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Putin's Next Move: Cuba, Venezuela?

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Michelle Obama can fire the pastry chef 'cause she doesn't like milk, sugar, bread, eggs, butter, whatever.  In Venezuela, there is turmoil.  They don't have any flour.  They don't have any milk in Venezuela.  They don't have any diapers. 

"Alvaro Villarueda starts his morning the same way every day -- putting in a call to his friend who has a friend who works at a Caracas, Venezuela, supermarket. Today, he's looking for sugar, and he's asking his friend if he knows if any shipments have arrived. As he talks on the phone, his wife ... is in the kitchen." Sugar shortages in Venezuela, and do you know who their client state is? 

Cuba! 

What is their number one export in Cuba? 

Sugar! 

It's not rum, and it's not tobacco.  It's sugar.  Venezuela and Cuba are inseparable.  They're ideological soul mates, and Cuba's number one export is sugar, and Venezuela still doesn't have any.  "There are 10 mouths to feed every day in this family -- five of them children. The two youngest are still in diapers.  'The things that are the scarcest are actually what we need the most,' [the mother] says.

"'Flour, cooking oil, butter, milk, diapers. I spent last week hunting for diapers everywhere. The situation is really tough for basic goods.'" This is an NPR story, National Public Radio, and they're gob-smacked. They don't understand it. It's a socialist paradise!  Venezuela is a socialist paradise. Remember Hugo Chavez? He was the answer! He cared about the little guy.

Hugo Chavez was doing everything for the little guy and for the little people who've been screwed over by all those evil corporatists and the evil shop owners.  And I will guarantee you that the government of Venezuela is telling its own low-information citizens (which is most of 'em, by the way), "Oh, you can't find sugar?  It's because your evil grocery store owner won't let you buy it.  They're hoarding it!"  That's the way they do it.

In socialist-communist countries, they blame the people that the customers interact with directly.  A lot of surprising news is coming from our media guardians all of a sudden here.  Maybe they're getting these stories out of the way while they know people aren't paying attention because of the missing Malaysian airliner.  But they're going to blame the shop owners; they're going to blame the businesses. 

Hugo Chavez was nationalizing everything could get his hands on. He was nationalizing airlines, oil companies, oil wells. The state was going to take it over because the private sector was screwing people; the private sector was leading to shortages.  Now they don't have sugar, milk, eggs, diapers, nothing in Venezuela.  Crime is out the roof, too! That's the alternative to Scott Walker. 

There is no recorded history of socialism ever working.  I know you in this audience know, but, remember: There are new arrivals every day.  I talked to one today about how he found us and what he thought before he got here.  Sometimes you gotta go back to the basics.  "Obama would never do that." Right, "Obama would never do to health care what he's done to it." Right, "Obama would never make health care unaffordable! 

"Obama would never allow cancer patients to not be treated.  Obama would never..." Except all of that and more is happening under Obama.  The health care system has never been this bad in this country, is it safe to say?  The health care system has never been this bad.  Short of the Great Depression, it's arguable the economy has never been this bad, particularly after five years. And there's no hope. 

There are no indications that it's going to improve because there's no effort actually being expended to make it improve.  This is just the new normal, folks. This is what you are supposed to get used to.  And NASA? NASA says that this has to happen in order to save our society.  What we're doing here is we're equalizing everything. We're getting rid of inequality, where everybody's equal now.  Nobody has that much more than anybody else.  That's what we're aiming for, and that's how we will save our society. 

That's NASA. 

That's Obama. 

This mess is how we save America. 

That's who you voted for.  

BREAK TRANSCRIPT
 RUSH: Let's stick with some of this geopolitical discussion of Venezuela, because there are two things that relate to this and Russia. We've got to bring Russia into this, given Vladimir Putin's obvious desire and movements already being made to reestablish and rebuild the Soviet Union.

Venezuela, at the moment, is in this kind of bad shape, with it's "annualized inflation rate reaching 57%." The problem is that Cuba is dependent on Venezuela for its oil.  Venezuela's oil is what fuels the Cuban economy and allows them to grow and raise the sugar and other things that they export.  Venezuela's oil provides 60% of Cuba's demands. "In exchange, Cuba sends about 30,000 doctors to Venezuela, according to an analysis by Pavel Vidal, a former official at Cuba's central bank and now an economics professor at the Universidad Javeriana in Cali, Colombia." 

"For the last decade, Venezuela's oil has helped fuel Cuba's economy, providing 60% of the communist-ruled island's demand," and then Cuba sends the doctors. "The commercial relationship with leftist Venezuela accounts for 40% of Cuba's trade -- or 18% of Cuba's gross domestic product, Vidal said. If Venezuela were to cut Cuba loose," if Venezuela said: We can't even take care of ourselves, here; we can't afford to give you oil or sell it cheaply or whatever.

"If Venezuela were to cut Cuba loose, it could cause Cuba's economy to contract anywhere from 4% to 7.7%." Cuba's economy is nothing to write home about. "'Cuba depends on Venezuela's political situation,' Vidal said. 'And right now, Venezuela is unpredictable.'" It's tenuous. In addition to all of that, "Canada's largest airline announced Monday it has suspended flights to and from Venezuela capital Caracas as violent protests continue in the country.

"'Due to ongoing civil unrest in Venezuela, Air Canada can no longer ensure the safety of its operation and has suspended flights to Caracas until further notice,' said the airline in a statement. ... Despite being one of the world's top 10 oil-producing countries, more than 25% of Venezuelans live below the poverty line." This is socialism on steroids.  This was a workers' paradise!  This was the model.  Venezuela. 

Sean Penn and all these Hollywood actors loved Hugo Chavez.  They thought Venezuela was where equality reigned and where fairness and all these wonderful liberal things were are display.  And instead, it's just abject, absolute misery.  There isn't any freedom. There is fear in the lives of practically every citizen daily.  Now there's no sugar.  Now there's no milk.  Now there's not even diapers. 

The Venezuelan government has a 57% inflation rate, and is blaming the shop owners.  Cuba is so dependent on this... They talk about the US embargo.  Every other country in the world is free to do business with Cuba.  Now, why does all this matter?  A number of you say, "Come on, Rush! Who cares about Venezuela and Cuba?  For crying out loud, our own country's going to hell in a handbasket!"  It is.  It is in a way. 

We're nowhere near the shape Venezuela's in or Cuba, but we've got leaders who exemplify the same kind of thinking.  If you listen to Fidel Castro talk about the United States of America, it's no different from that and the way Democrats talk about this country when there's a Republican president.  You listen to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad talk about America during the 2004 presidential campaign?

It sounded just like John Kerry talking about America.  When you listened to Hugo Chavez talking about Bush and the United States, it was no different than the way Democrats today talk about it. The United States is the evil superpower.  The United States is the problem in the world, the United States military. The United States has stolen every other nation's resources! The United States is unjust, immoral. It's not a proper superpower, all that.

It's the same type of Saul Alinsky thinking. 

Now, over here, while all that's going on, Barack Obama is filling out on ESPN his March Madness brackets, while all of this is going on. And over there in Crimea and Ukraine, Vladimir Putin is openly laughing at the president.  Vladimir Putin only had to look at Obama's resume to know that he was no contest.  All he had to see was community organizer, community agitator, and that's all Putin needed to know, to know he could take him. 

So Putin wants to what?  He wants to rebuild the Soviet Union.  What do you have in that hemisphere?  No Soviet Union anymore.  But one of their former client states, Cuba, in bad shape.  Soviet Union used to give Cuba $5 billion a year.  Was it five billion?  It was huge, and when that money was taken away, was when the cigars went to hell and the sugar started becoming less.  They didn't have their own money.  They took five billion or whatever it was away from them, and they didn't have the financial resources to keep up.  They couldn't make up the loss. 

Now you got Venezuela ripe, ripe for somebody.  And you've got a president filling out his March Madness brackets while this is going on.  Now, what if Putin sits there, "You know, it was really cool when we ran Cuba."  And, in fact, haven't there been stories of Russian ships pulling into port in Havana in the last year or two. And aren't there similar stories of Russia supporting the Sandanistas, Daniel Ortega is back in Nicaragua?  So what if Putin decides, "There's nobody that's gonna stop me.  Nobody's got the guts."  What if he wants to put it back and include Cuba and maybe even Venezuela?  It all matters, folks.  (interruption)  Who, Putin would have to get the ChiComs out of his way in Latin America?  (interruption)  And the Iranians, but there's an alliance there ready to be made.  Because who is everybody's enemy there?  Us! 

The ChiCom common enemy is us; the Iranian common enemy is us; Cuba's common enemy, us; Venezuela's common enemy, us; Nicaragua's common enemy, us.  And here comes Putin.  The Iranians need material to build a bomb.  Who's got it?  Putin.  Serious stuff is the point.  It is really serious stuff.  And I'm sorry, I am not confident we have anybody in foreign policy leadership that even considers any of this a problem.  There's no hiding how weak Obama is.  There's no hiding how uninterested he is in all this.  There's no hiding the fact that Obama believes the days of the United States being a superpower were unjustified anyway.  There's no hiding any of that. 

Now, the Democrat theory is, all we gotta do is show the bad guys that we don't mean 'em any harm and they'll leave us alone.  All we have to do is show 'em we're not the cowboy Bush.  We show 'em we're not Reagan with the finger poised on the nuke and we don't want to hurt 'em.  All we gotta do is show 'em that we're finally nice, reasonable people, and they'll stay where they are and they'll leave us alone. 

What they ought to do is examine how they behave toward the Republicans.  When the Republicans are nice to 'em, what do they do?  They move in for the kill!  Exactly what our enemies would do if they thought there would be no opposition.  They're not gonna stay contained in their own borders, hunky-dory.  It's not the nature of bad guys.  

END TRANSCRIPT

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