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Maindawg -- It is true, of course, that both Chavez and Maduro were elected by the people. I lived there (1999-2002) when Chavez was popular. However, as I noted to my Spanish teacher at the time, there were few "centrists" in the political scene. They were either far right or far left. The Chavistas have now been in power for 17 years. That's too long. Power corrupts.
Maduro controls everything in the country. Just about everything has been nationalized. Take a look at this report by Reuters in 2012...a list of everything nationalized. Oil prices in 2012 averaged about $90 per barrel. In 2013 and 2014 before the drop, prices were in the $100 bbl range.
Venezuelan nationalizations under Chavez
In the five years since the 2012 report, there is little left to nationalize. Fidel Castro would be proud of Maduro. He has transitioned Venezuela into a Cuban like country.
Many of the "elitists" have left the country...by elitist I mean anyone with a higher education. The middle class. They are Maduro's enemy. I know because I hired some of the best and brightest out of their universities. They are as good as any American I ever hired. The problem is, they also left, working in the USA, Canada and other countries so happy to have their expertise...but not welcome in their own country.
Venezuela, once one of the most technological advanced countries in the world, has undergone a massive brain drain. It hurts their economy. There are few incentives for any small company to even start up. If they make a profit they will likely be nationalized. For Maduro, the word "profit" is a filthy word.
Maduro and his Chavista followers in Government have no idea how to make an economy work. That's why the economy is on the verge of collapsing. Yes they have massive oil reserves, but oil reserves in the ground, do not help the economy; and without the technological know how and the economic muscle of private industry, the oil will remain in the ground. Ditto for tourism and agriculture...enormous unrealized potential, but no investment by the ruling party.
The drop in oil prices have contributed to Venezuela's decline. That's a fact. But long before oil prices declined, Venezuela was headed towards a failed state because of the power of one party rule and the ineptness of the leftists running the country.