Here's What Happens When You Let Crazy, Economically Ignorant Socialists Run the Show
We could really learn a lesson from Venezuela, you know.
More worrying is Venezuela's apparent inability to get to grips with persistent inflation, which is now the highest in Latin America, reaching an annual rate of at least 27% in 2009.
Last week, yet again, Mr Chavez merely fuelled the inflationary spiral by raising the minimum wage to compensate workers for their loss of purchasing power.
At the same time, he has attempted to impose price controls which have largely failed to work.
Exito means "success" - but its French owners failed to please Mr Chavez
As a result, he has increasingly resorted to the ultimate economic sanction - confiscating the businesses of those who refuse to curb their prices.
The latest victim of this policy is the Exito supermarket chain - run by a Colombian retailer but ultimately controlled by France's Casino group, which also owns stores in Brazil, Argentina, Mexico and Uruguay.
That makes it the ideal target for Mr Chavez, who has ordered its expropriation as an example of "transnational companies" coming to Venezuela to "speculate with our prices".
Yet there is little evidence that Exito was doing anything other than reflecting the higher costs of imported goods that now have to be paid for with Mr Chavez's devalued bolivars.
I don't see anything in there about nationalizing car companies but shit does that 27% inflation number scare the crap out of me. Ohhh dear Hugo.