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Argentina condemned again (to success)

A former president said: “... Argentina is doomed to success,” yet success lasts us little for Argentines.

Politics and Economics
Cerati 04.09

I remember very well when in the  Congress of the Nation , in the middle of the social and economic crisis, a former president told us:  “... Argentina is doomed to success rdquo; . Surely he did not take into account that our justice is not very hard when you apply penalties, so  success lasts us little for Argentines .

Rarely a phrase can sum up so much of our history, and also hide it. Being convicted means punishment, something imposed and unwanted. If success is our pity, then what to strive for? And how can a society develop if it expects success as a result of other people's merit? We have experience in this. For the last 40 years we have been suffering the  “Success Crisis” , each one very well explained by the politicians in turn.

Today we face a dilemma. For some analysts, the change of public policies prevented a new crisis; for others it is brewing it. Argentine  politics  is like that, reformist, and we are already accustomed to changes. But for the world we are unstable, unpredictable.

The international community is looking closely at this reform process, and for the time being includes us on its agenda, but it does not integrate us. For that we need to make the decision to refound some aspects of our social and political relations.  We don't want to be condemned, we want to be successful.  Only then can we develop as a nation and as a society. Integration into global productive and economic processes implies a consistent policy and a vision of our country as part of global value chains.

Argentina's current challenge is to overcome cyclical reform processes in order to develop a future perspective based on new social and political foundations that will enable us to exploit national economic potential for the benefit of all Argentines.

Why are we doomed?

Above we talked about the famous phrase that  Eduardo Duhalde  gave in his speech at the beginning of ordinary sessions in 2002. I find it impossible not to draw a parallelism with a very similar phrase uttered at the end of the nineteenth century by then-president  Julio Argentino Roca   “... we are the trace of a great nation, destined to exert a powerful influence on the civilization of America and the world...” . The difference lies mainly in the context in which both phrases were pronounced: Roca's was expressed in a context of prosperity when we were still  the barn of the world , while that of Duhalde took place in a totally opposite context and after the  economic and social crisis   However, this dissimilarity in the contexts gives an account of the recurrent constraints in our history for the country's development that continue to present to the present day. That is, an  undeniable trust in the natural wealth of our country . They wanted to convince us that Argentina, as the barn of the world, is a country destined to  walk the path of success , no matter what happens with our institutions.

According to Rodrigo Zarazaga Director and Principal Investigator of CIAS (Center for Research and Social Action):    Our condemnation is not, then, to success, but to endure the invasions of the scene of political actors who consider themselves the best managers of that wealth and who are they are then willing to lay their mantle of political unanimity on a people who are somewhat willing to support any alternative that conceals their new reality, always poorer than what history promised them in its beginnings.  ”

So valuation and respect for institutions are simply empty shells that serve only to mask  personalist projects of political hegemony.  It is enough to listen to the speeches of those who ruled us for the past 40 years where without any glance they associate their political party with the homeland itself. In Zarazaga's words:  “Not a few felt the right to extend their political unanimity about the country and to declare “unhomeland”, “sepayos” or “vultures” to anyone who was not excited to enlarge their ranks.   “ They seek the accumulation of power so that they can  manage that inexhaustible wealth to their liking and adjust institutions to their interests  so that they can govern under no other dictation than that of their own reason.

They mix the concepts of national unity with political unanimity and governance with omnipotence and institutional outrage. There are two vicious circles in Argentina which make our development impossible: the first is one that, in an attempt to unanimity, performs the opposite action, seeking to erase the traces of the previous one and which makes it impossible to establish common objectives that transcend partisan differences. And the second vicious circle is made up of dangerous relationship between charismatic leaders, weak institutions and complicit society.

Publication Date: 19/04/2018

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