By Christian K. Caruzo
Venezuela’s socialist regime distributed a “Hope is Reborn” Christmas bonus stipend this week to users of its Chinese social credit system-inspired Fatherland platform.
The “generous” gift of 44 Venezuelan Bolivars was worth $2.84 on Monday and is now worth $2.67 as of Friday’s official exchange rate.
The $2.67 is far short of being able to cover the cost of any of the ingredients in the nation’s traditional Christmas dish, hallaca, which cooks now require at least $68 to make 58 of the corn cakes. The socialist nation’s minimum wage of 130 bolivars a month ($7.90 as of Friday) cannot begin to cover a basic family serving of the dish.
“The delivery of the Hope Reborn Bonus sent by our President Nicolás Maduro through the Patria Platform has begun. The delivery will take place between December 19-23, 2022,” a message on the Fatherland platform’s website (only accessible from Venezuela) read.
Venezuela socialist Christmas bonus 2022 (Photo: Christian K. Caruzo/Breitbart News)
The message also tells users of the platform that those fortunate enough to have become recipients of the socialist regime’s generosity will receive a text message on their phones that reads, “we feel joy and optimism for the blessings that the Child God will bring us. At Christmas, hope and the spirit of union are reborn.”
Del 19 al 23 de diciembre de 2022 se estará entregando el Bono Renace la Esperanza por un monto de Bs. 44,00 a través de la plataforma PATRIA.#veqr#bono#patria#venezuela#nicolasmaduro#carnetdelapatria#somosvenezuela#NavidadTiempoDePaz pic.twitter.com/exETn6piwz
— Bonos de la Patria (@bonosdelapatria) December 19, 2022
The Fatherland platform is a system that the Maduro regime built with the help of the Chinese company ZTE and is heavily inspired by communist China’s social credit system. The platform — the functionality of which has been gradually expanded throughout the years — contains a substantial amount of information on every Venezuelan citizen registered on it, such as their personal information and that of their families, any health conditions that they may suffer from, work information, and their Chinese coronavirus vaccination status.
Registering on the Fatherland platform is mandatory to be able to receive the regime’s meager money stipends, subsidized gasoline rations, and other “benefits” such as additional monetary bonuses to pregnant women and the elderly, as well as the monthly CLAP food boxes, a highly subsidized set of low-quality food products that often come either rotten or bug-infested.
Every monetary bonus stipend that a user receives through the platform is displayed as an accolade with a commemorative picture that often features Nicolás Maduro doing some sort of activity.
Venezuelan citizens who are registered with the Fatherland platform are given a Carnet de la Patria (Card of the Fatherland), a physical proof of their registry. The card, which contains basic personal information on the front, has a QR code on the back that can be scanned with a Maduro regime-developed Android smartphone application to access a user’s data or to be able to opt into the regime’s monetary bonuses or programs.
The monetary bonuses that the socialist regime gives to Venezuelans as “social protection” are always worth almost nothing, made even more worthless by the rapid and constant devaluation of the Venezuelan bolivar, which lost 39 percent of its value over the past month.
For comparison, the Maduro regime’s 2021 Christmas Bonus was 46 Venezuelan bolivars — which at the time was worth $10. Today it is worth $2.61.
The Maduro regime has not officially revealed the exact number of Venezuelans registered in the Fatherland platform in recent years, only claiming to have had 18.3 million sign-ups in 2018 and never updating that amount, which cannot be independently verified.