Thursday, November 12, 2009

Great moments in the history of statism Pt. V

If Venezuela isn’t careful, they’re going to wind-up looking like the U.S.

President Hugo Chavez’s government on Wednesday nationalized two coffee companies, including Fama de America, one of Venezuela’s largest coffee producers.

The state-run Bolivarian News Agency said presidential decrees published in the Official Gazette ordered the government takeover of Fama de America and Cafea, which together control about 80 percent of the local coffee market.

The government justified this take-over claiming the two coffee companies were flouting the price controls and smuggling coffee out to Columbia. A black market attempting to get fair market price for something and a resulting shortage on the legal market are the entirely predictable results of price controls.

Meanwhile, stateside… how’s that auto bailout working for ya?

The Treasury Department will shut down a program to provide additional assistance to some of the nation's largest bailed-out companies, saying that most no longer need the help.

Of the 19 financial institutions and automakers eligible for the Capital Assistance Program, only GMAC, the auto lender, requires further financial aid, Treasury said.

Treasury said that GMAC was the only company unable to meet their “stress test” standards and will receive between $2.8 and $5.6 billion dollars in TARP funds in addition to $2.9 billion more in loan guarantees the government is planning on offering GMAC. GMAC has already received $12.5 billion in bailout assistance since the onset of last year’s financial crisis.

Anyone wanna bet that this next bailout round will not be the last?

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