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Venezuela – fingerprinting as a rationing device.

Ben Cahill

26th August 2014

Venezuela’s socialist government took a different approach, implementing price controls to lower prices. Standard economic theory would predict that this would lead to shortages, which is exactly what has happened. A link to the food shortage problem can be found here.

As the article says, the blame for the shortages is placed on those panic buying and hoarding food (and the CIA also get their fair share of blame as well). Therefore the response is to introduce a system of biometric food rationing where information will be kept on each individuals purchases and prevent them from buying too much.

Something needs to be done – Venezuela is currently top of the “Misery Index” – a combination of inflation rate and unemployment rate. However, it seems unlikely that they will resort to some orthodox economic theory and let price act as a rationing (and signaling) function.

More information on the new system can be found here.

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