How Socialism Devastated Venezuela

How Socialism Devastated Venezuela

Michael Sabga, a born-again Christian and successful businessman who was born in Venezuela shares how his family was heartbroken as they watched their home country deteriorate. Listen to hear what Michael thinks will happen to Venezuela.

25 Minutes • 2 months ago

Episode Notes

The Strang Report

with Stephen Strang

Guest: Michael Sabga

Michael Sabga, a born-again Christian and successful businessman who was born in Venezuela shares how his family was heartbroken as they watched their home country deteriorate. Listen to hear what Michael thinks will happen to Venezuela.

Introduction

Stephen Strang: If you've been following the news, you know that Venezuela is falling apart. It’s incredible that the country once described as the most prosperous in South America is now in total chaos, and it's because of socialism. Hello, everyone. I’m Stephen Strang and welcome to the Strang Report. On my podcast and newsletter, I cover a wide variety of things. Most of them have to do with the Christian community. But today I'm going to talk about a very important social and political issue and to explain what is going on in Venezuela by interviewing a man that I recently met in St. Augustine, Florida. His name is Michael Sabga. He was born in Venezuela. When I ran into him and heard him tell a little bit of his story, I said, this is interesting. I'd like to sit down and interview you for a podcast. As I got to know Michael, I discovered that he's a successful businessman. He's lived in the United States since the 1980s, but he was born in Venezuela. His father was in the oil business and he has watched as his country of birth has fallen into total disaster. He is a born-again Christian and he gives us insight that only someone from that country could. I've personally been baffled about how all this could happen, even though we know that countries that have taken on socialism have fallen into despair. But at least a lot of them function, even at a low level. Listen to my interview with Michael Sabga and you'll learn something. You'll also hear the passion as he talks about how this is affecting people that he knows.

·         Read the Strang Report: Successful Businessman Born in Venezuela Explains How Socialism Devastated His Homeland

Michael, you were born in Venezuela. So, you understand the situation down there in ways that most Americans don't know. When you were a little boy, what was Venezuela like?

Michael Sabga: Venezuela was a prosperous, beautiful, great country to live in with a great education system, great economy, buildings, highways, one of the most advanced medical facilities in the world were in Venezuela when we were growing up. The freeway systems were unparalleled in South America. It was a country that was built with foundations that would last multiple generations, a real powerful country and prosperous, like I said. It was a country that had real freedoms like in the U.S.: freedom of expression, freedom of just culturally speaking, religious. For example, Venezuela has one of the biggest populations of evangelism in Latin America. People don't realize that sometimes. But that's the kind of country that Venezuela was when I grew up.

From Charisma News

·         Venezuelan Pastor Issues Urgent Call to Prayer

·         Are We About Ready to Go to War with Russia Over Venezuela?

·         Ministry Aids Venezuelans with Survival Kits

Stephen Strang: You told me earlier that your father worked for the oil company. You move to the United States in the 1980s. Your parents moved out in the 1990s. Hugo Chavez, of course, came in in the late 1990s. Can you explain how a country as prosperous as you just described, could devolve into the chaos that we read about and hear about in the news.

Michael Sabga: There's a lot of reasons and a lot of different opinions on how Venezuela went from being such a great country into the chaotic situation that it is now. Various people will give you various points of view. My point of view is one that is a very simplistic point of view, which has to do with the fact that when we were kids growing up in Venezuela, the borders between Colombia and Venezuela were very porous. Actually, they still are. There's never been, per se, like an actual fence or border or any such thing; just open country with sort of like a highway that unites both countries. Then of course, there's a customs facility on both sides, etc. But when you look at the immense piece of land that is in between Venezuela and Colombia, and much of it is in the jungle areas, it's really open country. People can go in either direction. In the 1970s and 1980s, what really happened, and this is my opinion, is that Columbia was, as you know, a very poor and just devastated country. They were under the grip of really bad drug cartels. We all know about Pablo Escobar and the Cartel del Valle and what those people did to Columbia, which was basically turned into a war zone.

Stephen Strang: I had reason to go to Columbia back in that era, and I was told not to go, that it was just much too dangerous.

Michael Sabga: Absolutely. You could get shot anytime of the day or night in the streets. There were car bombs going off. Absolutely no security whatsoever. The desperation of those people, they had to flee the country. The quickest and easiest thing was to go to Venezuela right next door, of course, very convenient. But also, Venezuela was so rich and there was so much work, that those people would come in and they would find work and they would eventually … many of them would actually do better for their families and their lives. Venezuelans welcomed that. The problem was that for a long period of time, I'm talking two decades, the migration of these people was so intense and so heavy that it got to a point where the Venezuelan system couldn't deal with them anymore. They couldn't support them. They couldn't offer them education. What you ended up with were what we call belts of poverty around the cities. Around the cities you would see these poor areas with shacks and mountains that would fill up with really, really poor shacks that were built out of cardboard and things like that. Then when the rains came, they would wash them down into the rivers and people would lose their lives. It was a really horrible thing. But that poverty, the Venezuelan government couldn't deal with it and the religious institutions couldn't deal with it. That created an atmosphere where people that were poor, we're having children that then we're also poor, and they were not being incorporated into society. That went on all through the 1970s, the ‘80s. During the ‘90s it probably slowed down a little bit, but it was already such a big problem that at that point, you had somebody like Hugo Chavez who came in 1998 speaking the language of the people, the common poor people, offering them a future that was, let's put it this way, giveaways. Health system giveaways and even food and money, just handouts to help them get through the tough times.

Stephen Strang: So, these poor people voted for him and put him in office. They were able to outvote the people that were more middle class, I guess you'd say. So, when Hugo Chavez got in, he had close ties to Cuba. Was he actually a communist or was he just accused of being a communist?

Michael Sabga; He was definitely a communist. He was definitely a follower of Fidel, of the Marxist ideologies that came with all of that movement that swept through not only Cuba, but all of Latin America. In fact, a lot of people would be shocked to learn that Fidel Castro actually invaded Venezuela, not only once, but twice. After he was already in Cuba, he made various incursions into Venezuela to try to invade Venezuela because, of course, they were after the oil and the money and the power that came with oil. And he failed. He basically failed. We had a gentleman who was a president by the name of Marcos Perez Jimenez, who was later named as a dictator, basically. But what he was, was a leader who basically squashed the socialist and communist movement not only in Venezuela but in a great part of Latin America. But Hugo Chavez grew up listening to the stories of Fidel and how he came to Venezuela and how he wanted Venezuela to be under the communist regime, let's say of Latin America. Then basically, Hugo Chavez came in in 1998 and hand delivered Venezuela to the Cubans, if you can really put it in as simple terms as that.

Stephen Strang: So here was a prosperous country described as the most prosperous country in Latin America, and I have been to Argentina and Brazil, and I consider them both prosperous. So, I'm saying to myself, even though I've never been to Venezuela, Venezuela was better than that with all this oil. But I've also been to Nigeria and seen the poverty and, of course, they have a lot of oil to so oil itself doesn't make a country great. But you're describing a very vibrant Venezuela that has fallen into such chaos that they don't even have electricity. The inflation is, someone told me, 10 million percent. You can't even fathom that. People don't have enough to eat. It all started with mass migration that ended up voting in a socialist. Then when the socialist got in, what did they do that created all this economic chaos?

Michael Sabga: The first thing they do is they go after the Constitution. So, whatever constitution is in place, they're going to go and change it. That's a textbook definition of what Marxism is, and what communists do. They go into the country and the first thing they're going to do is what I call fix the Constitution in a way where they can perpetuate their power forever and ever, amen. You see it in Cuba. The second thing they do is they infiltrate the electoral system. Now, they can stay in power forever. They will infiltrate the apparatus of the elections. That way they basically fix the election so they're always winning. There were many, many instances where Hugo Chavez brought in these voting machines, electronic machines, where he got to control the results. It was just blatant.

For the rest of Stephen’s interview with Michael Sabga, please click here.

Where to Find Stephen Strang on the Internet

·         The Strang Report on Charismamag.com

·         The Strang Report on cpnshows.com

·         On Twitter

·         On Facebook

Episode Notes

The Strang Report

with Stephen Strang

Guest: Michael Sabga

Michael Sabga, a born-again Christian and successful businessman who was born in Venezuela shares how his family was heartbroken as they watched their home country deteriorate. Listen to hear what Michael thinks will happen to Venezuela.

Introduction

Stephen Strang: If you've been following the news, you know that Venezuela is falling apart. It’s incredible that the country once described as the most prosperous in South America is now in total chaos, and it's because of socialism. Hello, everyone. I’m Stephen Strang and welcome to the Strang Report. On my podcast and newsletter, I cover a wide variety of things. Most of them have to do with the Christian community. But today I'm going to talk about a very important social and political issue and to explain what is going on in Venezuela by interviewing a man that I recently met in St. Augustine, Florida. His name is Michael Sabga. He was born in Venezuela. When I ran into him and heard him tell a little bit of his story, I said, this is interesting. I'd like to sit down and interview you for a podcast. As I got to know Michael, I discovered that he's a successful businessman. He's lived in the United States since the 1980s, but he was born in Venezuela. His father was in the oil business and he has watched as his country of birth has fallen into total disaster. He is a born-again Christian and he gives us insight that only someone from that country could. I've personally been baffled about how all this could happen, even though we know that countries that have taken on socialism have fallen into despair. But at least a lot of them function, even at a low level. Listen to my interview with Michael Sabga and you'll learn something. You'll also hear the passion as he talks about how this is affecting people that he knows.

·         Read the Strang Report: Successful Businessman Born in Venezuela Explains How Socialism Devastated His Homeland

Michael, you were born in Venezuela. So, you understand the situation down there in ways that most Americans don't know. When you were a little boy, what was Venezuela like?

Michael Sabga: Venezuela was a prosperous, beautiful, great country to live in with a great education system, great economy, buildings, highways, one of the most advanced medical facilities in the world were in Venezuela when we were growing up. The freeway systems were unparalleled in South America. It was a country that was built with foundations that would last multiple generations, a real powerful country and prosperous, like I said. It was a country that had real freedoms like in the U.S.: freedom of expression, freedom of just culturally speaking, religious. For example, Venezuela has one of the biggest populations of evangelism in Latin America. People don't realize that sometimes. But that's the kind of country that Venezuela was when I grew up.

From Charisma News

·         Venezuelan Pastor Issues Urgent Call to Prayer

·         Are We About Ready to Go to War with Russia Over Venezuela?

·         Ministry Aids Venezuelans with Survival Kits

Stephen Strang: You told me earlier that your father worked for the oil company. You move to the United States in the 1980s. Your parents moved out in the 1990s. Hugo Chavez, of course, came in in the late 1990s. Can you explain how a country as prosperous as you just described, could devolve into the chaos that we read about and hear about in the news.

Michael Sabga: There's a lot of reasons and a lot of different opinions on how Venezuela went from being such a great country into the chaotic situation that it is now. Various people will give you various points of view. My point of view is one that is a very simplistic point of view, which has to do with the fact that when we were kids growing up in Venezuela, the borders between Colombia and Venezuela were very porous. Actually, they still are. There's never been, per se, like an actual fence or border or any such thing; just open country with sort of like a highway that unites both countries. Then of course, there's a customs facility on both sides, etc. But when you look at the immense piece of land that is in between Venezuela and Colombia, and much of it is in the jungle areas, it's really open country. People can go in either direction. In the 1970s and 1980s, what really happened, and this is my opinion, is that Columbia was, as you know, a very poor and just devastated country. They were under the grip of really bad drug cartels. We all know about Pablo Escobar and the Cartel del Valle and what those people did to Columbia, which was basically turned into a war zone.

Stephen Strang: I had reason to go to Columbia back in that era, and I was told not to go, that it was just much too dangerous.

Michael Sabga: Absolutely. You could get shot anytime of the day or night in the streets. There were car bombs going off. Absolutely no security whatsoever. The desperation of those people, they had to flee the country. The quickest and easiest thing was to go to Venezuela right next door, of course, very convenient. But also, Venezuela was so rich and there was so much work, that those people would come in and they would find work and they would eventually … many of them would actually do better for their families and their lives. Venezuelans welcomed that. The problem was that for a long period of time, I'm talking two decades, the migration of these people was so intense and so heavy that it got to a point where the Venezuelan system couldn't deal with them anymore. They couldn't support them. They couldn't offer them education. What you ended up with were what we call belts of poverty around the cities. Around the cities you would see these poor areas with shacks and mountains that would fill up with really, really poor shacks that were built out of cardboard and things like that. Then when the rains came, they would wash them down into the rivers and people would lose their lives. It was a really horrible thing. But that poverty, the Venezuelan government couldn't deal with it and the religious institutions couldn't deal with it. That created an atmosphere where people that were poor, we're having children that then we're also poor, and they were not being incorporated into society. That went on all through the 1970s, the ‘80s. During the ‘90s it probably slowed down a little bit, but it was already such a big problem that at that point, you had somebody like Hugo Chavez who came in 1998 speaking the language of the people, the common poor people, offering them a future that was, let's put it this way, giveaways. Health system giveaways and even food and money, just handouts to help them get through the tough times.

Stephen Strang: So, these poor people voted for him and put him in office. They were able to outvote the people that were more middle class, I guess you'd say. So, when Hugo Chavez got in, he had close ties to Cuba. Was he actually a communist or was he just accused of being a communist?

Michael Sabga; He was definitely a communist. He was definitely a follower of Fidel, of the Marxist ideologies that came with all of that movement that swept through not only Cuba, but all of Latin America. In fact, a lot of people would be shocked to learn that Fidel Castro actually invaded Venezuela, not only once, but twice. After he was already in Cuba, he made various incursions into Venezuela to try to invade Venezuela because, of course, they were after the oil and the money and the power that came with oil. And he failed. He basically failed. We had a gentleman who was a president by the name of Marcos Perez Jimenez, who was later named as a dictator, basically. But what he was, was a leader who basically squashed the socialist and communist movement not only in Venezuela but in a great part of Latin America. But Hugo Chavez grew up listening to the stories of Fidel and how he came to Venezuela and how he wanted Venezuela to be under the communist regime, let's say of Latin America. Then basically, Hugo Chavez came in in 1998 and hand delivered Venezuela to the Cubans, if you can really put it in as simple terms as that.

Stephen Strang: So here was a prosperous country described as the most prosperous country in Latin America, and I have been to Argentina and Brazil, and I consider them both prosperous. So, I'm saying to myself, even though I've never been to Venezuela, Venezuela was better than that with all this oil. But I've also been to Nigeria and seen the poverty and, of course, they have a lot of oil to so oil itself doesn't make a country great. But you're describing a very vibrant Venezuela that has fallen into such chaos that they don't even have electricity. The inflation is, someone told me, 10 million percent. You can't even fathom that. People don't have enough to eat. It all started with mass migration that ended up voting in a socialist. Then when the socialist got in, what did they do that created all this economic chaos?

Michael Sabga: The first thing they do is they go after the Constitution. So, whatever constitution is in place, they're going to go and change it. That's a textbook definition of what Marxism is, and what communists do. They go into the country and the first thing they're going to do is what I call fix the Constitution in a way where they can perpetuate their power forever and ever, amen. You see it in Cuba. The second thing they do is they infiltrate the electoral system. Now, they can stay in power forever. They will infiltrate the apparatus of the elections. That way they basically fix the election so they're always winning. There were many, many instances where Hugo Chavez brought in these voting machines, electronic machines, where he got to control the results. It was just blatant.

For the rest of Stephen’s interview with Michael Sabga, please click here.

Where to Find Stephen Strang on the Internet

·         The Strang Report on Charismamag.com

·         The Strang Report on cpnshows.com

·         On Twitter

·         On Facebook

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How Socialism Devastated Venezuela