This article talks about the economic crisis in Venezuela.  Although Venezuela is known for its abundant resources of oil, it is now having to buy oil from the US because they are not able to produce their own.  Much of the equipment is broken or missing.  Many oil rigs do not even have the basic materials necessary for operation.  Many workers are working for next to nothing.  Most workers are earning around a dollar a day, while a loaf of bread costs fifty cents.  There are many food shortages such as rice and corn and people line up for hours just to get a loaf of bread.  There are also shortages of antibiotics.  In addition to the struggling Venezuelan economy, the decrease in oil production in Venezuela could cause an increase in oil prices across the world.

One of the most striking examples of how this economic collapse is affecting the people is a story told by some of the workers of the oil rigs.  They say that because of food shortages and almost non-existent paychecks, many are going hungry.  One man said that he went from 200 pounds to 145 pounds.  One of the dangers in working on such an insufficient diet is that many are at risk of fainting on the job.  Coworkers look out for each other when they are up high in case they faint while working.  This seems very extreme.  People shouldn’t have to have a fear of fainting at work because they can’t get enough to eat.  It’s alarming that people are doing without some of what we view as the most basic needs in the US, food and medicine.  Hunger and poverty aren’t new, but it is disturbing when you see such blatant facts.

How Bad Off Is Oil-Rich Venezuela? It’s Buying U.S. Oil