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Venezuela: the brain drain begins in earnest
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, March 03, 2007

Well soon, Hugo Chavez will be the "smartest man" in Venezuela. Not necessarily because he has a high IQ (he's a socialist for heaven sake, that gives you an indication of intelligence or lack thereof all by itself) but because anyone with any smarts at all will be gone:
As Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez further tightens control of the South American country's economy, wealthy Venezuelans who once thought they could live with his socialist edicts are turning to their backup plan - flight to the United States, particularly Florida.

Venezuelans have long gobbled up condos and pre-construction deals in Florida as investments, but the latest buyers want homes where they can live and business properties that will help them earn a green card.

"First the people who come are the businessmen in the highest circles, then the losing politicians, then the military and then the professionals," said Miami-based immigration attorney Oscar Levin. "You're beginning to see the (Venezuelan) professionals."
As he tightens his socialist controls and takeovers by decree, the flow is turning into a flood:
Between 2000 - a year after Chavez took office - and 2005, the number of Venezuelans living in the U.S. doubled to about 160,000, according to the latest U.S. Census numbers. Nearly half live in Florida.

But those numbers are deceptive.

In 2005, 10,645 Venezuelans received their green cards allowing them to live in the United States, almost doubling the 6,222 who received them in 2004, according to the latest Department of Homeland Security statistics. And another 400,000 Venezuelans came to the United States in 2005 on business and tourism visas. It is unclear how many stayed.
And political and economic reasons aren't the only ones:
And while Venezuelan emigrants cite the political and economic instability of the country as their main reasons for leaving, many also talk of rampant and random violence.
Yup ... another socialist paradise in the making.

Also note the country of choice for those who prefer their freedom and want to hold on to their property. Hint: it's not Cuba.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

I guess the forces of counter-revolution prefer the smell of sulfur to their workers’ paradise.

So, will we let those who have no green card stay as refugees?
Written By: Bryan Pick
The obvious solution for Chavez is to use his buddy Fidel’s approach: Just don’t let people leave. If Chavez was unburdened of existing institutions in Venezuela he would probably be doing just that. It is hard to understand how Chavez can show such reverence for Castro without believing that his methods are acceptable.
Written By: Dan Morgan

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