Media Link: AVFA on Latin America.

In the latest episode of AVFA Selwyn Manning and I discuss the evolution of Latin American politics and macroeconomic policy since the 1970s as well as US-Latin American relations during that time period. We use recent elections and the 2022 Summit of the Americas as anchor points.

5 thoughts on “Media Link: AVFA on Latin America.

  1. Hola Pablo.. tanto tiempo !

    A very enjoyable episode.

    The interesting thing for me was how political movements seem to go in generations of 30 years.
    You mentioned 30-50’s national populism, 60-80’s neoliberalism then I would add 90’s to 2020’s globalism

    So what is next… reset …. multipolarity or both perhaps ??

    Saludos atentamente

  2. Hola Eduardo!

    Bienvenido de nuevo y muchas gracias por el cumplido. Siempre es un placer oír de ti.

    (For non-Spanish speakers, Edward has a LATAM connection and is fluent in Spanish so we tend to greet each other in that language. I just thanked him and welcomed him back to KP after a hiatus).

    As for where next in the region. I think that the PRC is going to play a big role in shaping the contours of LATAM foreign policies as the US influence declines. Some countries will gravitate to a PRC centric orbit and others will stick with the pro-US orientation, perhaps on more favourable terms. There may also be sub-regional divisions. Central America is not South America and the Caribbean certainly is not Central America or South America. Within each there is the right versus left-leaning tensions, all backdropped against climate change and recognition, however begrudgingly, of indigenous rights.

    But the cut will work both ways: Aided and abetted by foreign influencers like Steve Bannon, some countries like Brazil under Bolsonaro want to retreat into a white Xtian heterosexist patriarchy-dominant society, much in the way that Putin, Orban, and US and Polish conservatives want a return to “traditional” values. In contrast, the Left is increasingly post-modern in focus, which simply less emphasis on socio-economic class and more emphasis on identity and the social division of labor and other non-production related aspects of the economic order.

    Although incorporating noon-class issues is a good thing, I think that it is a bit of a mistake to dismiss matters in and of production. After all, it is clear that the current global system of production, supply, consumption and exchange–global capitalism, in other words–is in crisis and is unable to resolve of itself, in its present guise, the myriad problems that have been revealed by Covid and its response. Income concentration, “races to the bottom,” supply chain bottle necks and shortages, opportunistic price-gauging (such as that of oil companies), etc: none of this can be resolved by the current model as given.

    It strikes me that LATAM indigenous socialists may be among the first to develop alternatives to the current system, be it things like “near-shoring” and “friend-shoring” or more revolutionary/radical changes to the international economy. That may lead to new alliances, both ideological as well as pragmatic in origin.

    What is clear is that the era of US dominance in LATAM is ending and now form of bipolarity is emerging where countries now look to the PRC as much if not more than the US when it comes to economic and perhaps even political direction. That may lead to a dual multipolarity, one inter-regional and one when it comes to foreign interlocutors. But my crystal ball is cloudy beyond that speculation, so I will leave it at that.

  3. Barbara,

    Let’s hope this is a turn for the better. But the rightwing death squads and paramilitaries are already threatening to resume their dirty work in order to “finish the business” of eradicating commies from Colombia and (unmentioned) thereby have the drug trade to themselves. Fingers crossed that Petro takes a gradualist approach and can build a political coalition and policy platform that eases the fears of economic and military elites and foreign governments (the US in particular).

  4. Meanwhile the storm clouds, the clouds of war, get ever darker in Europe.
    I’m really concerned by the latest headlines ( the Guardian).
    Also now that we are in the 2nd half of the year.

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