Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
At some point, the United States must tackle the core problem of the region: Latin America's persistent poverty. Mr. Chávez, for his part, has been addressing the issues surrounding this simple fact for six years now.  Meanwhile, the Bush Administration continues to pursue market reforms, privatization, and free trade agreements, without realizing that Latin Americans are increasingly blaming all three for their plight. A shift in strategy is desperately needed to reassure the region that this is not the case.
This is really something... How come 'market reforms' and 'free trade' and the rest of the Washington 'consensus' have not been thoroughly discredited by their repeated failures to make inroads on problems of poverty? I mean, these same people have no problem claiming that any and all 'socialist' ideas have been completely 'proved' 'wrong' with the Soviet collapse. But, 'free market' thinking is clearly right, no matter what the evidence of its destructive effects on developing nations. (Because poverty was never the issue to begin with? The interest was always on the side of creating the most favorable climate for business profits and continued prosperity of the well-off, and a strengthening of their position?) Let's just make trade a bit freer and prosperity will flow to all!!! Yeah, not stupid enough to buy that little claim, since it seems to be backed up by exactly nothing in the forms of actual outcomes... In fact, one might say it has been contraindicated...
by someone (s0me1smail(a)gmail(d)com) on Wed Jul 18th, 2007 at 04:20:15 AM EST

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