This is repeating a familiar tedious story.
Poor friffin’ Argentina, ruled from forever by a splintered combative stupid criminal class of politicians accumulated from all over.
Unfortunately the Argentinian people repeatedly choose bad leaders or choose not to remove their bad leaders.
That is something that has mystified me for years. Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico, are all blessed with size, resources, and population. Why aren’t they as stable, peaceful, and prosperous as the US and Canada historically have been for the last 150 years? Instead, they get wave after wave of jumped up pieces of crap that make war on their own populations. What was the body count of the Galtieri junta? 10,000? 30,000?
Unfortunately many LatAm countries are democracies by the consent of the military. This is a hard concept for Americans to understand or to accept.
On January 23, 1958 the Venezuelan dictator, Marcos Perez Jimenez, was ousted by a coup led by the Venezuelan navy and a provisional government called for democratic elections won by the reformed Communist, converted to Social Democrat, Romulo Betancourt. At some point he called a meeting of the democratic leaders and asked the question, “¿Who is our most dangerous enemy?” After everyone expressed his opinion Betancourt replied, “No, it’s the military. We have to make sure to keep them happy in their barracks.” They instituted a policy called something like “Plan Arepa.”
Maybe that’s why America has programs like the F-35…
When the democratic economy collapsed four decades later, the people elected a Messiah, a Comandante, Hugo Chavez, a charismatic leader loved by his subordinates. Lots of my middle class friends expressed regrets for having voted for Chavez. They though he would bring back good times like the ousted dictator, Marcos Perez Jimenez, had done five decades earlier.
Forgive me, I can’t stand the irony.
Some people hereaboutsare prepping, burying foodstuffs in the basement, making sure they have enough ammo and guns, and loading up on metals because the US dollar is about to collapse, and …
Argentina is moving to it because it is a pillar of stability,
That is more typical than humans want to acknowledge. We face it as well.
The immigrants to the US mostly come here because their own stuff stinks. May love the cultures but staying put and manning up is hard. Most won’t do it.
When mom and pops here on Main Street do not like my message that is why I am here saying the things I do.
The economy with a strongman is garbage. We can destroy the US economy with ignorant mismanagement sponsored by mom-and-pop on Main Street.
I spent a month one time in Guanajuato MX, pondering the local Spanish history, learning about silver mining history, how the local natives WILLINGLY SLAVED for the Spaniard “land owners”.
I came to the conclusion that PART of that willingness was due to the natives’ tradition culture of a King/God, the traditional accepted MANDATE to provide what that King/God demanded (including one’s own children for sacrifice!)…
The local natives did not conceive of a “different” way.
That ancestral traditional, ACCEPTANCE of a King/God, IMO still plays some role in the politics and governance of LatAm countries.
Ie the basic governance concepts of the people is NOT “democracy”. It’s “obey the King/God/dictator”.
In opposition to the basic governance concepts of LatAm, The US was colonized by people fleeing a monarchic system, with the Magna Carts and the French Revolution as part of their “democracy governance philosophies” (John Locke, Thomas Paine, etc), …
AND apparently influenced by Algonquin nation concepts of self-rule, democracy.
No, this isn’t the whole picture, but is perhaps an influence on the current status quo?
ralph notes that the Guanajuato, Dolores Hidalgo, San Miguel de Allende, Patzcuaro, Zacatecas, Aguas Calientes area is the birth place of MX independence, diez y seis de Septiembre, and the movement to a so-called “Democratic government”, back in 1811-1821.
US founders all survived the 4 year long American Revolution, to lead the “new country”. The US whooped that British hiney, and TOOK US independence!
The Mexican Revolution leaders were killed within months, their heads put in cages for public view in Guanajuato, and a brutal war between Mexicans and Spanish lasted 10 years. Mexico did not “win’. Spain was paying it’s military to fight"revolutions” in Central and South America (Bolivar), and IIRC the Pacific colonies. Spain QUIT fighting, and released their colonies to their own fate.
At least that’s how I understand LatAm colonial history and independence.
From museum exhibits, pamphlets, travel guide info, talking to people in MX and Central America, etc.
I welcome different POVs!
I’ve visited the Guanajuato area for a couple weeks at a time, on maybe 6 occasions.
So, you attribute it to the Spanish culture being some years behind the north, when it comes to rejecting the “divine right of Kings” nonsense, and either bringing the royals to heel, or the guillotine.
But when would you celebrate the overthrow of divine kings outside of Spain? 1215? 1649? 1793? 1917?
Keep in mind that Latin Americans are not “Spanish”. They think of and take pride
in themselves as Mexicans, Guatemalans, Panamanians, etc.
I attribute PART of the answer to a culturally ingrained acceptance of a “King/God”.
And therefore a lesser acceptance/understanding of “democracy”.
I think this applies elsewhere, to other societies, too.
Take the break up of the USSR.
I think commoner (prole) Russians are so ingrained to a “central authority” telling them what to do, that when they got “liberated” in the early 1990s, the “Proles” had no idea how actually implement “democracy” and then maintain it.
IMO, lasting, functional democracy (and building a nation that is a functional democracy!) is easier said than done.
In Mexico, Emiliano Zapata led the indigenous in a “common man” revolt (the Zapatistas). It was a good try, and somewhat successful??? But, over time, the wealth divide has reasserted itself.
What I was trying to get at was that most, especially European, cultures had the “King/God” thing going on, that royals rule by “divine right”, until “we the people” either brought them to heel, or the guillotine. But, somehow, the Spanish cultures have not made that leap? As you say, one could argue that the Russians have not made the leap yet, either, having gone from a divine authoritarian, to an atheist authoritarian, to, now, another authoritarian that finds it expedient to embrace the bigotries of organized religion.
As Franklin said “a republic, if you can keep it”. In the 70s I was seeing a move toward greater democracy and equal rights in the US. These days…
Let’s not forget the Spanish Inquisition also came to Latin America. At least Columbia has an inquisition museum. Also Peru I’m told.
In short you will be Catholic or you will be dead. People who failed to convert were tortured to death.
God and King may be a bit strong. It was good for your health.
Some say the fundamental problem in Latin America is they were founded by criminals. They lack the tradition of service for the community good. Ie the Mayflower Compact.
And another good point.
I’d forgotten the Mayflower Compact. Europeans came to the 13 Colonies to settle and build a home.
The settlers were libertarian, capitalist with an education and philosophies that valued “democracy”… They moved into and established themselves in a land with no established “system”.
The settlers displaced the local indigenous, killing most and then moving the remnants to reservations, less desirable land, with “other” “not American/USian citizen” status, and creating the “open” social/governance niche.
The Spanish came to extract wealth, and exploit, and take it back to mother Spain. They established the same monarchical governance as in Spain. And, as Paul says, with the Pope/Catholic religion overlay.
They assimilated the local indigenous and built on the local custom of the indigenous as slaves.
The natives were automatically “Spanish” citizens, with slave / second class citizen status.
There were (are?) no “reservations”.
The Congregationalists were horribly conservative. The Unitarians made the entire difference influencing the founding fathers dramatically.
That is not true for the colonies. In fact, this was England’s problem. The settlers were governing themselves for several decades. England could not figure out how to manage that.
I have no comments on South or Central American histories. Not my thing. The current stuff has something to do with migration. We get the risk-takers that would have been a counterbalance to authoritarian rule. The global brain drain leaves problems behind it.
I think thats a stretch. You could not settle in a New England community unless the residents thought you could contribute something of value. Ie a blacksmith when they needed a blacksmith. You needed to be in good standing with the church. Participation was required. Otherwise you got rejected. They say the rejects were sent to Rhode Island which was a bit more liberal in acceptance. It has the oldest Jewish community in North America.
While I can’t speak for other LatAm countries the creole ‘colonials’ of the 19th century Venezuela had a different outlook than modern day citizens.
The creoles got very rich and wanted to attain nobility rank which only the Spanish crown could grant. They sent requests to the King who would ask for certification of purity of lineage and financial compensation. The church kept the records and issued such certificates. But there was a problem, the Conquistadores didn’t bring women to America. To rectify the matter, the creoles worked hard to “improve the race” while the clergy extracted bribes to cleanse the certification of purity of lineage. The rank of nobility was hard and expensive to get. When the French invaded Spain the creoles said, “The hell with it, let’s go for independence.” On April 19 1810, they sent the Spanish governor back to Spain.
Venezuelans still regard Spain as ‘the mother country’ but regard themselves as Venezuelas with no hyphens, no Afro-Venezuelans, no German-Venezuelans. It’s truly a well functioning melting pot which does not deny individual cultural heritage. My first business partner and former boss was known as “El Negro Gamboa” and he claimed to be the descendant of African kings and native princesses.
My point is that two centuries does make a difference. After gaining independence Venezuela was conquered by American fast food and later by Cuban Marxists. Maybe it was revenge for Venezuela getting Cuba kicked out the OAS for Che Guevara trying to Invade Venezuela
There are 21 countries in LatAm, all quite different from one another
In 1963 IBM sent me to sales school to Cuernavaca, Mexico. Their culture was quite different from ours (Venezuelan). It’s 21 different cultures.
If you want to know more about the Owners of the (Caracas) Valley Los Amos del Valle, this is fun book to read.
Not to disagree, but this is totally and completely wrong. They were rigid conformists, who established state religions, and you attended and were in good standing or you were shunned and sometimes thrown out of that colony.
Your job was often dictated to you, and if the community needed something else you could be told to change occupations.
Marriages wee often pre-arranged, schooling for boys was minimal and for girls even less. Social mores were rigidly conformist, even as they mouthed piety to liberty.
They came from a common ancestry (Britain) and the upper crust had some commonality in philosophy (which included “free will” and “liberty”), but then they also held slavery to be natural and it was accepted in nearly every colony for most of the pre-revolutionary period.
Not hardly what you’d expect from “libertarians.”
“-- Congregation Shearith Israel, founded in 1654, in New York City, is the oldest congregation in the United States. Its present building dates from 1896–97.
– Congregation Jeshuat Israel, founded circa 1658, in Newport, Rhode Island, is dated to sometime after the arrival of Jews in 1658…”
Recall our High School history classes: Roger Williams was expelled from the Massachusetts Bay colony, and, with the help of the local natives, established “Providence Plantation”, in what is now Rhode Island. Not surprisingly, he advocated for religious tolerance and separation of church and state.
Yep the schisms created CT and RI. A little later from New Haven, Hartford and Boston possibly Providence and Springfield came the Unitarians as Yale and Harvard were taken secular. If Yale and Harvard had not been taken secular the entire history of the nation would have been different. Brown may have followed along with Princeton (University of NJ) and Columbia (King’s College).