CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's economic failings are turning it into the "laughing-stock" of Latin America, according to late president Hugo Chavez's top economic planner. Former Finance and Planning Minister Jorge Giordani, who was sacked in mid-2014 by Chavez's successor, Nicolas Maduro, said in an interview this week that reforms in the South American OPEC nation are years overdue. "We should have taken measures from Oct. 7, 2012," Giordani told local website notitimes.com, referring to the date of Chavez's last presidential election victory. Chavez, who was president for 14 years, died of cancer in 2013. "In truth, we are almost the laughing stock of Latin America," Giordani, 75, said. "If the situation is bad, if the thermometer is at 40 degrees, there are those who blame the thermometer ... We need to acknowledge the crisis, comrades." Venezuela's ailing economy is Maduro's No. 1 problem. The economy is in recession, inflation is the highest in the Americas, revenues have been cut by half due to the fall in oil prices, and there are shortages of basic products. Giordani, a Marxist economist nicknamed "the Monk" for his austere lifestyle, was one of Chavez's closest advisers and helped him create Venezuela's state-led economic system. Foes lampooned him as a Soviet-era dinosaur lost in utopian visions and, indeed, still blame him for Venezuela's current problems. Maduro sacked him from his post as planning minister in mid-2014, after which Giordani publicly criticized the president for lack of leadership and squandering Chavez's legacy. "Listen, let's stop importing foods, let's produce," he added in the interview, referring to Venezuela's oil dependency and shortages of basic products. "Stop messing with things that work, it's as if we have the Midas touch in reverse," he added, referring to the mythological King Midas whose touch turned everything to gold. Giordani also criticized corruption, government bureaucracy, spending profligacy, which he called "fiscal nymphomania", and the "crass mistake" of not publishing central bank data on time. However, "of course we must defend the revolutionary government ... and the construction of socialism," he added, in the face of "fascist" threats from Venezuela's domestic opponents and the United States. Some government supporters now call Giordani a traitor. (Writing by Andrew Cawthorne; Editing by Alexandra Ulmer; and Peter Galloway)
Actress Anne Heche has died. The 53-year-old actress was in a devastating car accident on Friday, August 5, that left her in a coma. Her family had issued a statement shortly before her death to inform the public that the “Six Days, Seven Nights” actress was not expected to survive after experiencing a catastrophic brain injury caused […]
- In The Know by Yahoo
TikTokers were shocked by what this mom uncovered in the toddler clothes section.
- The Hill
Republicans, including Greene, have repeatedly accused the Justice Department of going after Trump for political reasons.
- Business Insider
Trump doesn't deny taking classified nuclear documents from the White House while baselessly accusing Obama of the same thing
Trump baselessly said Obama "kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified," suggesting that "lots" of them "pertained to nuclear."
- Rolling Stone
Republicans in Congress and the conservative media are plum out of talking points following the revelation that the FBI may have been searching for material pertaining to national security
"Alarm has grown when you talk to advisers of the former president," Washington Post reporter Josh Dawsey tells MSNBC.
- NBC News
A Texas man charged with five counts of child sexual assault died after a jury convicted him and he chugged a bottle of liquid in the courtroom, his lawyer said.
Trump baselessly bashed Obama for transferring records from the White House to Chicago. Here's why Obama was allowed while Trump is under scrutiny by the FBI.
The National Archives took it upon itself to dispel Trump's claims on Friday.
- Rolling Stone
"Nuclear weapons issue is a Hoax, just like Russia, Russia, Russia was a Hoax," the former president raged on Truth Social
Some Republicans express concern about Trump reportedly taking documents about nuclear weapons to Mar-a-Lago, even as they bash the FBI
One House GOP lawmaker said the severity of what Trump may have done could depend as not all nuclear information is "highly, highly" classified.
Here’s the Real Reason Tom Brady Is Taking a Surprise Break from the Buccaneers & When He’s Coming Back
His first break since coming out of retirement.
- The Recount
Fox News' Steve Doocy to House GOP Chair Stefanik on nuclear documents reporting: "That's kind of a big deal!"
Fox News' Steve Doocy said to House GOP Chair Stefanik that reports the FBI were seeking to retrieve classified nuclear documents from Mar-a-Lago is: "kind of a big deal!". President Trump overnight said that he encouraged the judge who authorized the search to release both the warrant and the list of items sought in the search.
- AZCentral | The Arizona Republic
Federal sources tell Newsweek what happened at Mar-a-Lago: The FBI truly thought this wasn't going to be a big deal. Whoops.
- E! News
After Tom Brady missed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' team practice on Aug. 11, head coach Todd Bowles said the NFL quarterback will be taking time away from the team. Find out when he'll return.
- Yahoo TV
Despite the fact that the image shown was credited to a Twitter handle run by a digital artist who creates memes, Kilmeade tried passing it off as real.
Republicans may have shot themselves in the foot by hammering the DOJ to release the Mar-a-Lago search warrant
Legal experts and political strategists speculate that Donald Trump's backers overplayed their hand and Merrick Garland called their bluff.
- The Daily Beast
Fox News/ScreenshotAs it becomes increasingly clear that Donald Trump may have violated the Espionage Act by storing “top secret” government documents at his private residence, the former president has turned to a familiar excuse: Obama did it too.“President Barack Hussein Obama kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified. How many of them pertained to nuclear? Word is, lots!” Trump posted on his social media platform Friday.But shortly after that, Fox News’ chief political ancho
- The Advocate
The actress had been declared brain dead, but she was kept on life support for a time for the purpose of organ donation.
Trump and his allies have attempted to distract Americans from an ongoing criminal investigation by pushing false claims about Obama. The facts reveal why the two presidents' actions aren't comparable
The Trump family was “actually able to see the whole thing,” attorney Christina Bobb said of the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago.