The socialist government of Venezuela is, basically, rationing food. With food shortages a concern, one that’s been around for some time and was one of the issues at the center of protests earlier this year, its implementing a biometric system that will track how much people buy to stop them from overbuying:
The Venezuelan Executive Office is to implement a biometric system for the purchase of food in private supermarkets, for the purpose of controlling the sale of staples per individual. Authorities have outlined the move seeks to “collect data on Venezuelans’ purchases, included items and frequency” in order to tackle food smuggling.
With the mechanism, customers’ identity card numbers and fingerprints will be recorded, so as to prevent them from buying the same product more than once during the same week.
The current Venezuelan president, Nicolas Maduro, has continued the most of Hugo Chavez’s policies and announced the biometric food rationing system in the spring. Maduro, who’s led the country since March 2013, has blamed hoarders, smugglers, and the Central Intelligence Agency for the food shortage.
Earlier this year, Al Jazeera reported that the hoarding of food was worsening Venezuela’s shortage. But, in reality, that doesn’t speak to the real problem. The country’s socialist government implemented price controls under Chavez, despite warnings that the move would worsen food shortages.
The result has been shortages things that Americans can easily buy at their local supermarket, including milk, flour, and even toilet paper. Of course, Venezuela’s problems aren’t limited to price controls. Most of the actions taken by Chavez and Maduro have sent the oil-rich nation in a downward spiral.
But that’s the nature of heavy-handed, socialist government intervention in a free market. All it does is bring misery to those who live under it.