It was the blowout of the Barroso No. 2 well in Cabimas in 1922 that marked the beginning of Venezuela's modern history as a major producer. This discovery captured the attention of the nation and the world. Soon dozens of foreign companies acquired vast tracts of territory in the hope of striking it rich, and by 1928 Venezuela became the world's leading oil exporter. Oil ended Venezuela's relative anonymity in the eyes of world powers, making it a linchpin of an ever-expanding international oil industry and a new consideration in global policymaking. Venezuela's oil production became a major factor in policy making in Washington before the Second World War.Not Marx. Rand. Plus a little Graybill as well. Oil locked Venezuela into the embrace of globalism, where its government and economy were monopolized by US refiners. Globalism always narrows down the local range of skills and resources. The colonial master sees you as a supplier of one product or service, and maximizes that one product. = = = = = Sidenote: Scanning through those 145 ornamental woods showed a remarkable amount of learning and skill among Venezuela's carpenters and cabinetmakers. Nearly all had a specific use. Most have Injun names; one obvious Spanish name caught my eye. BORRACHO. (Piscidia erythrina) A light wood which resists the attacks of insects on account of a poisonous substance contained in the sap. It is used for ordinary cabinetwork. Sounds highly useful, but why drunk? Looked up the Latin name, found that it's commonly known as fishfuddle [Wonderful word!] in English. The poisonous substance is rotenone, definitely a good insecticide.... and those Injuns used the wood to 'sedate' fish for easy catching. Thus fishfuddle, and presumably thus borracho. Seems like it would still be a good export. There's a market for naturally insecticidal wood!
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.