American have to understand something very important, and fundamental,
about politics in South America, and many other parts of the world. Most Latin
American "revolutions" have been about which faction of the elite is currently
in power, not about any fundamental change in how things are. They chose to
call themselves "Socialists" or "Conservatives" as a matter of convenience, and
in the hope of getting support/sympathy from abroad. Even Fidel Castro came
from this culture. His father was an officer in he Spanish Army, who fought
against Cuban independence, and later made sure Fidel had a healthy education
in anti-Americanism. Our "friends" down there are the same as our enemies, but
represent a difference of opinion among the ruling class, as to how best to
keep the right kind of people on top of things.
the rebels are children of the upper and middle classes, and when the rebels
succeed, they replace one form of police state with another. Often, the rebels
impose a more oppressive form of government, which is, in due time, pisses too
many people off, is overthrown, and replaced with a kinder and gentler form of
the same old economic and political oppression.
major problem in South America has always been a lack of economic freedom.
Without that, most of the population stays poor, and unhappy. Talk of social
justice in South America is usually just talk, because the wealthy families are
very reluctant to let competition arise. They note, even if only instinctively,
that the average family fortune in the United States only lasts about five
generations. That fact is also lost on most Americans, because the celebrity
driven media focuses on those few family fortunes that have lasted longer. The
many great fortunes that just fade away over a few generations are not
compelling news. But the new fortunes that replace them are, and that's what
you see much less of in South America, and many other parts of the world where
entrepreneurs are viewed as disruptive and a danger to the existing order.
all the prosperous economies are driven by entrepreneurs, and "new money."
That's what's behind the economic revolution in China, and the biggest danger
to the Chinese Communist Party. Even the Chinese communists realized that
without economic power, their political power was worth very little. But many
countries are run by rich folks who are willing to strangle the national
economy in order to preserve their positions. China let the entrepreneurs loose
again, and now you have many of the new fortunes earned by families that had
prospered under the empire. The talent is always there, if only those in power
are willing to take a chance on change.
curse of the hidebound is predominant throughout the "developing" world. Even
in the African countries, that came out of colonialism with their first set of
borders and government bureaucracies, the better organized and more aggressive
families quickly grabbed money, and power. After that, the main purpose of
politics was to hold on to the goodies, not do something that would benefit the