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Protests Sweeping LatAm are Part of a Global Phenomenon, Financial Times, November 23/24, 2019

Michael Stott's Big Read article "A second 'lost decade'” (November 16) gives the erroneous impression that the mass protests sweeping Latin America are somehow peculiar to the region and therefore make it an outlier. However, they appear to be part of wider global phenomenon of people rebelling against a detached and self-interested political elite oblivious to the economic anxieties and suffering of the average citizen.

Hence, the Chilean case, in particular, is not much different from what is at the root of protests in countries such as France, Lebanon and Iraq, and what has upended the political system in places such as the US and the UK.

There is a certain irony that the ire of most Chileans over their country's rigged "free market" crony capitalist model is directed at their billionaire president, Sebastián Piñera, whose fortune was built on introducing the credit card to Chile in the late 1970's. Given meagre salaries and the exorbitant costs of basic services which are now almost all privatized, most Chileans cannot survive without access to credit.

Thomas Andrew O'Keefe,
President
Mercosur Consulting Group, Ltd.
New York, NY, US

11/27/19. 02:54:00 am. Categories: Financial Times ,

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