Argentina in $6.5bn offer to debt holdouts after its 2001 default on $100bn.
Great to be back in Buenos Aires. Had a lovely walk in the park today. See you all at the show on Sunday! pic.twitter.com/V4Ws2bueRf
— Mick Jagger (@MickJagger) February 6, 2016
Brazil Health Researchers Say Zika Virus Is Active in Saliva, Urine. Pregnant women advised to take precautions to avoid coming in contact with others’ saliva; other researchers suggest such fears are overblown
Privatization success: Chilean Pension Funds Grow 4.1% Year-on-Year in January
This week, the DEA announced the arrests of Hezbollah operatives with connections to ‘La Oficina de Envigado,’ a major Colombian Drug Trafficking organization responsible for a large share of the cocaine shipped to US and European markets. The presence in Latin America of Hezbollah, the Lebanese-based and Iran-backed Shi’a Islamic terror group is hardly news.
The group has been active in money laundering and other illicit activities in the region for decades, predominantly in the lawless tri-border region between Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. Most notably, Hezbollah bombed a Jewish center in Buenos Aires in 1994, killing 85 and wounding hundreds. However, the recent increase in cooperation with drug traffickers, as evidenced by these high-profile arrests, represents an alarming trend and a dangerous prospect for the future of hemispheric security.
Falling oil prices are affecting Iran’s economy, and Hezbollah must diversify and pursue other revenue streams. The lucrative Latin American drug trade is a natural choice.
President Barack Obama promised to throw the White House’s full support behind the Colombian government’s efforts to sign a historic peace agreement with leftist rebels, including a pledge of $450 million in aid annually to help demobilize rebels who’ve been fighting an insurgency for 51 years.
Comunicado- Plan Colombia https://t.co/tNdMkaYWMS
— Álvaro Uribe Vélez (@AlvaroUribeVel) February 5, 2016
Pope Che’s going back to Cuba: In Historic Move, Pope to Meet With Leader of Russian Orthodox Church
Ecuador has protested to Turkey over an incident in which demonstrators were violently ejected during a speech by visiting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the capital, Quito.
Protesters in Haiti have beaten a man to death in a clash with ex-soldiers, as political uncertainty continues.
Witnesses say the crowd in the capital Port-au-Prince attacked the man, thinking that he was from the country’s disbanded military.
Congratulations to Eneas Biglione: HACER entre los 75 centros de estudios más influyentes de EEUU
“La reina del sur” in hot water: Mexican Judge Grants Del Castillo Protection against Arrest
The runaway cops visit the burnt-out unit,
Mis amigos de HACER nos invitan,
Descargue gratuitamente de aquí el libro en PDF “Desarrollo económico y pobreza en América Latina: El rol de los Planes Sociales” publicado por Atlas Economic Research Foundation y la Asociación de Iberoamericanos por la Libertad (AIL) en el que se incluye la investigación “Transferencias condicionadas de dinero: El caso Colombia y su Programa Familias en Acción” llevada a cabo por el equipo de investigacion de la Fundacion HACER en Bogotá, Colombia.
My friends at HACER announce,
The Hispanic American Center for Economic Research (HACER) and the Fundación para el Progreso “Jean Gustave Courcelle-Seneuil” of Chile, joined efforts to publish and promote “Interventionism and Misery: 1929-2008″ a book devoted to understand the nature of past and future economic crises around the world. With a perspective of Austrian economics, Axel Kaiser explains the causes of the Great Depression in 1929, the crisis that started in 2008, the role of statism in the road to ruin and the key importance of the gold standard and capitalism for a prosper future.
Ralph J. Benko says in the prologue: “Interventionism and Misery: 1929-2008 by Axel Kaiser is an important book. Economics has become, in Kaiser’s apt word, an astrology. The more miserable grow our economies the more pretentious grow professional economists. […] Statism is based on faith, not reason. The Black Stone – the primordial artifact – of the Kaaba of canonical economics today is the claim that the free market somehow caused, and failed to cure, the Great Depression. Axel Kaiser directly and capably critiques this, the very foundational myth upon which statism, that most modern of religions, is built. He capably strips away much of the veneer of theoretical legitimacy upon which statism depends.”
In the early 1990s, Friedman visited poverty-stricken Mexico City for a Cato Institute forum. I remember the swirling controversy ginned up by the media and Mexico’s intelligentsia: How dare this apostle of free-market economics be given a public forum to speak to Mexican citizens about his “outdated” ideas? Yet when Milton arrived in Mexico he received a hero’s welcome as thousands of business owners, students and citizen activists hungry for his message encircled him everywhere he went, much like crowds for a modern rock star.
Well over 200 million were liberated from poverty thanks to the rediscovery of the free market.
Thanks to the generous support of the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, HACER’s allies in Argentina, Colombia, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, the United States and Venezuela will join efforts to celebrate Friedman’s life and legacy for freedom around the world.
Steven Hayward remembers Milton Friedman
My all time favorite Milton story involves the time he was motoring in Europe, and noticed a large group of men digging in a field with shovels. Milton asked someone why they didn’t use a steam shovel or earth mover, and was told that digging with shovels was an employment measure, and if they used an earth mover it would put people out of work. To which Milton naturally followed up: “Then why don’t you give them spoons?”
No one converted Milton Friedman, either in economics or in his views on social policy. His own research, analysis and experience converted him.
As a professor, he did not attempt to convert students to his political views. I made no secret of the fact that I was a Marxist when I was a student in Professor Friedman’s course, but he made no effort to change my views. He once said that anybody who was easily converted was not worth converting.
I was still a Marxist after taking Professor Friedman’s class. Working as an economist in the government converted me.
What Milton Friedman is best known for as an economist was his opposition to Keynesian economics, which had largely swept the economics profession on both sides of the Atlantic, with the notable exception of the University of Chicago, where Friedman was both trained as a student and later taught.
In the heyday of Keynesian economics, many economists believed that inflationary government policies could reduce unemployment, and early empirical data seemed to support that view. The inference was that the government could make careful trade-offs between inflation and unemployment, and thus “fine tune” the economy.
Milton Friedman challenged this view with both facts and analysis. He showed that the relationship between inflation and unemployment held only in the short run, when the inflation was unexpected. But, after everyone got used to inflation, unemployment could be just as high with high inflation as it had been with low inflation.
When both unemployment and inflation rose at the same time in the 1970s — “stagflation,” as it was called — the idea of the government “fine tuning” the economy faded away. There are still some die-hard Keynesians today who keep insisting that the government’s “stimulus” spending would have worked, if only it was bigger and lasted longer.
This is one of those heads-I-win-and-tails-you-lose arguments. Even if the government spends itself into bankruptcy and the economy still does not recover, Keynesians can always say that it would have worked if only the government had spent more.
Although Milton Friedman became someone regarded as a conservative icon, he considered himself a liberal in the original sense of the word — someone who believes in the liberty of the individual, free of government intrusions. Far from trying to conserve things as they are, he wrote a book titled “Tyranny of the Status Quo.”
Milton Friedman proposed radical changes in policies and institution ranging from the public schools to the Federal Reserve. It is liberals who want to conserve and expand the welfare state.
As a student of Professor Friedman back in 1960, I was struck by two things — his tough grading standards and the fact that he had a black secretary. This was years before affirmative action. People on the left exhibit blacks as mascots. But I never heard Milton Friedman say that he had a black secretary, though she was with him for decades. Both his grading standards and his refusal to try to be politically correct increased my respect for him.
My favorite Friedman clip: when he pops Donahue’s balloon,
My friends at the Hispanic American Center for Economic Research held their VII International Workshop: Leadership, Virtue & Citizen Participation in Washington, DC,
• Analyze and discuss the most current public policy issues in the Americas.
• Learn about the main challenges of the region’s relations with the United States and the world.
• Visit the main ally think tanks in Washington DC, to meet their representatives, learn about their main programs and the different ways that we contribute to the cause of freedom and democracy around the world.
HACER is steadfast in promoting leadership in our hemisphere, and this workshop is an excellent example.
If you are interested in future workshops, you may contact them here.
The Hispanic American Center for Economic Research (HACER) is a 501(c)(3) organization that is supported entirely through gifts from individuals, philanthropic foundations, and corporations.
HACER is devoted to promote the study of issues pertinent to the countries of Hispanic America as well as Hispanic Americans living in the United States, especially as they relate to the values of personal and economic liberty, limited government under the rule of law, and individual responsibility.
HACER Latin American News is a particularly valuable resource. The compendium of articles in Spanish and English, collected from media reports from two dozen Latin American countries, is thorough, informative, and up-to-the minute. It is an invaluable resource, on which I rely for my everyday blogging.
Add their feed to your feedreader, bookmark them, and read them every day.
Good news from HACER,
Last Friday the Hispanic American Center for Economic Research (HACER) awarded Álvaro Uribe, the former President of Colombia, their Simón Bolívar Prize for his work on promoting liberty, security and democracy in Colombia and the Americas.
Uribe, who left office after completing his term with a 75% approval raiting, led the country during its most effective struggle against the FARC. During his tenure, murders dropped by 45 percent from 2002-2009, and kidnappings decreased by 90 percent. At the start of his administration nearly two-thirds of the country’s land was under the control of the FARC, which now has retreated to the more isolated regions of the country. The country’s economy also improved, as its poverty rate dropped from 54% to 46%.
During the award reception, Uribe spoke about what had been achieved in Colombia and about Latin America’s challenges. Among the attendees was Oscar Morales, founder of Un Millón de Voces contra las FARC (A Million Voices Against FARC). Ambassadors Otto Reich and Robert Noriega, and Congressman David Rivera (R-Fl) were also in the audience.