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Showing posts with label Argentina. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Argentina. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Why I'm Praying for Government Incompetence

by Bill Bonner

"You Americans don't understand anything. You have to come to Argentina and live here for a few years. Then you'll understand America."

We had to ask, "Huh?"

"When you're here, you can see more clearly how things really work... and don't work. You see the real nature of things... especially government. Believe me, you Americans have all sorts of delusions.

"A government 'by, for and of the people'? Or, as Hillary Clinton put it, 'The government is all of us.' Not quite. And when you've been here for a while, you'll see your own institutions more clearly."

Our Man in Argentina

The speaker was a friend of ours. An American from Alabama who has lived in Argentina for 30 years. He lived through the hyperinflation of the 1980s... the boom of the 1990s... and the crash of the 2000s.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Are We a 'Criminal Element'?

by Bill Bonner 


Back in the USA, stocks rose again yesterday. The Dow finished up 128 points. Gold fell $25 per ounce yesterday... and everybody seems to think it will be going down forever. (A word of caution: probably not.)
Last week, we went to São Paulo, Brazil. There, too, we found taxi drivers who knew a lot more about monetary crises than the typical US economist. Said one:
I remember. I was just a kid. But my father would call and tell us to run to the grocery store. He had just been paid. We'd dash for the grocery story, meet him there and buy everything we could. We spent every cent in just a few minutes.
Our friend was recalling what it was like in the late 1980s in Brazil. The government had caused inflation... then hyperinflation. Prices rose so fast that as soon as people got some cash they ran to the grocery store to spend it.
Later, there was no point. In 1990, hyperinflation in Brazil reached 30,000%. What cost 1 real (the Brazilian currency) in 1980 cost 1 trillion in 1997. The hyperinflation wiped out the middle class... and wiped the shelves clean.
"It's hard to run a business when you don't know what your money is going to be worth," said our friend. "Businesses tended to just stop."

From Harare to Buenos Aires...

And here in Argentina, there came an announcement this week. The government will freeze the price of gasoline for the next six months.