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Sorayana Bravo — Lessons Americans Can Learn From The Collapse of Venezuela

Sorayana Bravo — Lessons Americans Can Learn From The Collapse of Venezuela

What happened to Venezuela book coverWelcome to another episode of the Grow Your Life podcast. In this Book Discussion episode, we're talking with author Sorayana Bravo about the collapse of Venezuela and what we Americans can learn from it.

Sorayana is a multi-lingual Global Communications Specialist with analytical and strategic copywriting talents in cross-cultural and B2B sectors and the senior associate editor at the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE). But, instead of talking about her marketing experiences, we're going to dive into a conversation about societies and failing nations.

Sorayana is the author of a book, ¿Qué le pasó a Venezuela?, or (in English) What's Happened To Venezuela. In these pages, she takes a historical dive into the country of her origin and the factors that led to the fall of the richly resourced and independent nation of Venezuela.

In our discussion, we'll explore her story, what happened in Venezuela, and what we Americans can learn as we face our own societal unrest and institutional challenges now exasperated by the pandemic.

Conversation Highlights & Topics

01:16 - Sorayana's Story
03:44 - What was Venezuela like growing up there?
05:31 - Socialism, regulations, demands, and price controls
09:50 - Violence and escalation + Fidel Castro's influence
13:54 - Why did the people of Venezuela go along with Hugo Chavez?

14:54 - The neglect of religion and its role in the collapse (form versus substance)
16:07 - Poor psychopaths end up in prison, but educated ones can end up in politics
18:40 - Was Chavez Extractive or Destructive? or Both?
22:00 - How did this happen? Sorayana shares her journey to understand the collapse
24:12 - What is socialism and how did it play a role in the fall of the country?

31:00 - Why were American elites infatuated with Venezuela in the late nineties and early two-thousands?
32:26 - What was the United States' formal relationship with Venezuela like?
34:23 - How was it up to the country's fall and the years that followed?
38:25 - How was it possible to take control? The United States has institutions that can protect us. Did Venezuela lack those institutions?
43:12 - The role of oil dependency

50:04 - America is facing social unrest and democracy challenges, what can we learn from Venezuela's collapse?
54:35 - Is America beyond the tipping point? How can we respond?
57:00 - What can we be looking for and how do we effectively push back to create a better outcome?
59:32 - Final parting words on socialism

Connect With Sorayana

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You can also find this discussion on Stitcher, Itunes, and wherever you listen to podcasts under the name, Grow Your Life.

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Coronavirus, Podcast - Book Discussion

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