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Author Topic: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System  (Read 1664 times)

morganism

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Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System

https://decisiondeskhq.com/peru-mexico-chile-ecuador-and-the-struggle-to-change-a-broken-system/

"Latin American democracy has never lived up to its ideals and values. Two months ago, Decision Desk Headquarters analyzed the unfortunate Latin American political undercurrents of corruption, political fragmentation, “Caudillo” politicians, and wide wealth gaps. We analyzed the Ecuadorian Presidential runoff, the first round of the Peruvian Presidential Election, and the then upcoming Chilean Constitutional Election. A common theme in these elections was the conflict between the electorate’s desire to shed the corruption of the current system and said political system’s resistance to any reform. Two more Latin American elections this week exhibited this tension."

sidd

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2021, 09:52:06 AM »
deutsch welle: socialist elected in chile

"Boric, 35, a millennial former student protest leader who has vowed to raise taxes on the "super rich" "

https://www.dw.com/en/chileans-take-to-the-streets-to-celebrate-leftist-borics-election-victory/a-60187979

Kissinger is still alive to see this.

sidd

Alexander555

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2021, 07:12:53 PM »
That will be the end for Chili. A sociale europe-like model. Half of south-america is a favela. It want be long before they will have to start printing money day and night. Half of south-america will move to Chili for free stuff. And half of the planet is already printing money day and night. Inflation will probably become the next global crisis.

etienne

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2021, 07:47:07 PM »
Well, I believe that Chile is more mature than Venezuela, Nicaragua or Bolivia. It could look more like what we saw in Brazil and worked fine.

johnm33

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2021, 10:00:43 PM »
That will be the end for Chili. A sociale europe-like model. Half of south-america is a favela. It want be long before they will have to start printing money day and night. Half of south-america will move to Chili for free stuff. And half of the planet is already printing money day and night. Inflation will probably become the next global crisis.
Before the Spanish arrived the Inca managed a 'socialist' economy that supported a population similar in size to the current one, without systemic poverty.

El Cid

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2021, 08:31:07 AM »
john

I lived in a Socialist country. Thanks but no thanks. SOCIALISM DOES NOT WORK. It sounds good on paper, it is terrible in reality. People always think "but this time we will do it better". However, people are not perfect (to say the least) and therefore the system never lives up to hopes - on the contrary, it leads to deprivation. See Venezuela, a mighty mess even with the bigges oil reserves in the world! Even Cuba - although a more successful realization of the socialis model - is a very poor country, people flee from there. Wonder why they all want to go to the evil, capitalis USA?!

An old joke here in Hungary: "Introduce socialism in the desert and soon they will run out of sand"

oren

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2021, 11:19:04 AM »
The title of socialist can mean many things, not necessarily a Soviet style economy.
" vowed to raise taxes on the "super rich" " doesn't sound like an extremely bad idea.

SteveMDFP

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2021, 04:15:46 PM »
john

I lived in a Socialist country. Thanks but no thanks. SOCIALISM DOES NOT WORK. It sounds good on paper, it is terrible in reality. People always think "but this time we will do it better".

This is a silly over-generalization.  It's certainly true that quite a number of Marxist-inspired governments have horribly screwed up the lives of their people.  It's also true that quite a number of "socialist" governments have advanced human welfare within their borders.

Are the Social Democrats across northern Europe "socialists"?  If so, what's so bad about universal health care and a social safety net that protects its people from fear of hunger or homelessness in the event of becoming unemployed?   What's so bad about progressive taxation that reduces wealth and income inequality?

I would suggest that the important difference between a helpful government or unhelpful one is not so much Marxism/Socialism/Capitalism/Libertarian ideology as whether the political system gives real power to the people to choose.  One-party rule is generally an invitation to disaster--it doesn't matter whether that party is leftist or rightist.  One-person rule (dictatorships) have an even worse record.

Of course, two-party rule is only somewhat more democratic than one-party rule.  We see that in the US.

As for Chile in particular, it's interesting that electoral participation went up when people had a real choice.  It wasn't the choice many might have preferred, between too-right and too-left options.  But give the people real choices, and they will take their responsibility to choose seriously.  I suspect they chose well.  Time will tell.  Unless the new government degrades democratic principles, I suspect the nation will be fine.

Chile certainly has very good resources for bringing economic prosperity to it's people.  Great agricultural and mineral resources.  Given wise policies, the people may benefit enormously.

El Cid

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2021, 05:12:15 PM »
You are both right that Socialism is a broad and unwell defined term. However, the history of Latin America suggests that not much good will come out of it.

European style social democracy / the "welfare state" created the best living environment in the world in my view (let's not forget that W.European/German Ordolibearlism was a reaction to the Communist threat from the East, they had to counterbalance classic capitalism with welfare to appease the population and avoid revolutions) but Latin America has a tendency (surely due to historical social patterns) to go hardcore Socialist, which in my book means taking other people's assets (and going increasingly autocratic and creating perverse incentives which lead to very low efficiency).

But as Thatcher said very well:"The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.'"


(BTW, I consider myself a Social Democrat and agree with broader wealth redistribution)

 

etienne

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2021, 05:49:20 PM »
There was already in 2006  a socialist president elected in Chile, Michelle Bachelet, and it was fine. I don't think that there is anything to worry here.

As long as justice and the Parlament are independent of the government, there is not much to be scared of.

SteveMDFP

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2021, 06:00:38 PM »
You are both right that Socialism is a broad and unwell defined term. However, the history of Latin America suggests that not much good will come out of it.

European style social democracy / the "welfare state" created the best living environment in the world in my view (let's not forget that W.European/German Ordolibearlism was a reaction to the Communist threat from the East, they had to counterbalance classic capitalism with welfare to appease the population and avoid revolutions) but Latin America has a tendency (surely due to historical social patterns) to go hardcore Socialist, which in my book means taking other people's assets (and going increasingly autocratic and creating perverse incentives which lead to very low efficiency).

But as Thatcher said very well:"The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.'"


(BTW, I consider myself a Social Democrat and agree with broader wealth redistribution)

We would seem to agree more than we disagree.  A couple of points may still be worth discussion.

Why should being located in South America mean that a left-leaning government is automatically doomed to failure?  In truth, there's no shortage of examples of *both* left-leaning and right-leaning governments devastating the lives of their people in that continent.  Was Pinochet better than Chavez as a leader?  Personally, I have no idea, they were both disasters.

During the Cold War, the US exerted a very heavy hand in South America, propping up right-wing governments and undermining left-wing governments.  This doomed most left-leaning governments, regardless of how much better or worse they might have been for the governed.

The continent is *mostly* now freed from that heavy thumb on the scales.  Maybe Chile voted wisely, maybe they didn't.  Only time will tell.  I'm cautiously optimistic.  My main point is that as long as vigorous democracy remains intact, the people shouldn't have too much to worry about.

El Cid

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2021, 10:03:49 AM »
Unfortunately societies have a deep memory and their structure defines their relation to democracy. It seems that without a wide class of citizens who own assets / are entrepreneurial / have higher education and most importantly have the means to exist without dependence from the state - democracy is not possible. Ancient Rome already proved it (when the wide class of smallholders were wiped out during BCE 1st-2nd century, democracy collapsed).

I think this is the problem of Latin America: historically most of the people depended either on the state or worked in quasifeudal settings meaning that they always depended in their existence on a strong authority. This is why they are prone to authoritarian leaders be they left or right (and yes, I agree the US intervened during the Cold War there in very bad ways).

The same is true for Eastern Europe, a prime example is my homeland, Hungary, where an authoritarian leader with zero respect for democracy grabbed power and has been governing the country for 12 years now (authoritarians are ruling Poland, were ruling Slovakia in the 90s, and I wont even mention post-Soviet republics.

Our prime minister unchecked all the checks and balances and in effect created an autocratic system (and stole billions of euros of EU taxpayer money) where victory for the opposition is nigh impossible (although the 2022 spring elections are the greatest chance since 2010). This is only possible because 30-40% of the population supports him and the reasons go deep down in history: Hungary was occupied by the Turks for 150 years (not good for democracy), and after that was mostly a rural, feudal country with very few real citizens. The few we had (the town dwelling intelligentsia) was either Jewish (many killed during the Holocaust) or German (many repatriated to Germany after WW2). So we are a country of serfs - however harsh that may sound. Socialism did not help much to change this: to cope in that system you had to bow to authority.

This is why I think that Latam is very prone to go hardcore socialist and this usually does not end well, see eg Venezuela or Cuba

 

etienne

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2021, 01:39:51 PM »
Hello El Cid,
I feel that you are on one side pessimist regarding south America, Lula and Michelle Bachelet were both ok, and optimistic regarding Democracy in western Europe and north America. Crisis like COVID show us that modern democracy can also be very unfair.
Right now in Luxembourg, we have a government with a short majority and the laws are all voted 31 vs 29 without too much debate.
Your president is (was?) In the same political organization that Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron or Jean-Claude Junker, so we can't say that the EPP is undemocratic because of some examples that clearly are not. Same thing with the socialists. I never understood why political parties accept people who don't behave according to the message they want to carry in the political debate.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2021, 01:57:24 PM by etienne »

El Cid

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Re: Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and the Struggle to Change a Broken System
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2021, 04:40:42 PM »
The state of democracy - even with its numerous faults - is a thousand times better in Germany or France than in Hungary, that is for sure. If you lived here, you would not believe what is happening weekly. Any European government would instantly collapse from the scandals we have every week. It is quite amazing what has been gowing on here since 2010. Every week I can't believe my eyes and ears, and tell everyone that it can not get worse. It does. Why European taxpayers finance this is beyond me...

I do recognise the problems arising in the US and Europe though and most of it stems (I believe) from liberal economic policies enacted since the 80s that created income/wealth inequalities in these societies. If these are not taken care of, this could rip apart society for sure. I don't think we are there yet.