Protesters attends a rally against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro outside United Nations headquarters in New York, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
What to look for on Smart Talk Tuesday, October, 2, 2018:
The country of Venezuela, situated on the northern end of South America, is a topographically diverse and resource rich nation. The capital Caracas is the nation’s center of industry, commerce, education, and tourism. In the last century, Venezuela transformed from a relatively poor farming society to a rapidly urbanizing one, made possible by the discovery and exploitation of huge petroleum reserves.
Some estimates list Venezuela as having 20% of the global oil reserves and during the 21st century they became one of the world’s largest exporters of oil. During that time, oil production also became nationalized and what was once a bright future, became plagued with corruption and mismanagment. Many problems affecting the oil industry are directly attributed to the rise and control of Hugo Chavez in the late 1990’s and exacerbated his successor Nicolás Maduro, who remains in power.
Today, there is widespread social upheaval, rapid and uncontrolled inflation, and a population migration into neighboring countries that is threatening to destabalize the entire region. Additionally, economic sanctions imposed by the Trump administration in the spring has created an environment primed for other nations to step in offering aid and influence. China is filling that role.
Dr. Evan Ellis
Also on Smart Talk, the Green Party Senate candidate Neal Gale from Abington Township, Montgomery County. Smart Talk has invited the candidates for the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and governor to appear on the program so that voters can hear where they stand on the issues. The conversations are intended to allow candidates to state their positions and to provide information to voters to help them decide which candidates to support.