- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro decided to fight the country’s high inflation and shortage of basic goods by forcing an electronics store to lower prices — at gunpoint — and threatening other businesses with the same practice if they don’t follow suit.

National guardsman wielding rifles stood outside Daka stores, the Venezuelan equivalent of Best Buy, to force “bourgeois parasites” to charge “fair” prices, Mr. Maduro said, USA Today reported.

“I want a Sony plasma television for the house,” said Amanda Lisboa, 34, who waited seven hours outside a Caracas Daka store, USA Today reported. “It’s going to be so cheap!”

“This is for the good of the nation,” Mr. Maduro said in the report. “Leave nothing on the shelves, nothing in the warehouses. … Let nothing remain in stock!”

“This is more like government-sanctioned looting,” said Caracas-based engineer Carlos Rivero, 42, USA Today reported. “What stops them going into pharmacies, supermarkets and shopping malls?”

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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