Corruption and Poverty govern over Latin America
Corruption is the great plague that invades many countries in Latin America and the world. It will be perceived more and more as the threat of economic crisis looms, which will cause even greater rejection of corrupt practices.
Social and economic developments in Latin America over the past decade have failed to circumvent a harsh reality: 40% of the population is in vulnerable conditions. That is, the risk of falling into poverty is greater as the economic situation is aggravated by the economic slowdown.
The latest report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced dark clouds over Latin America, with the exception of Central America.
The political and economic crisis in Brazil and the inability of the Government of Venezuela have placed much of the continent under a bad prognosis for the next 12 months.
Some statistics shed light on the extent of this problem. In wages, 40% of more vulnerable Latin Americans earn an average of $ 1.72 per hour, while the other 60% enjoy a median income of $ 5.12 an hour.
And the differences are also evident when analyzing the years of education of each sector of the population, while the most disadvantaged studied an average of 6.4 years, the majority who had access to better income has studied for 9.3 years.
One of the biggest challenges for policymakers is to end corruption in order to focus on addressing the strong demand for services and the implications of the introduction in recent years of large sectors of the population who have moved from poverty to lower middle class and those from lower middle class to middle class.
At this time, no state is prepared to grow in infrastructure and social investment at the same rate as their citizens move up the socioeconomic ladder.
In São Paulo, the cradle of Brazilian big money, people are throwing dirt at Dilma Rousseff, who began a second term mortgaged by her political scandals.
Rousseff does not realize that people are less tolerant to corruption and that, coupled with economic stagnation and lists with names of those who steal in the administration, it all only adds up as fuel for the numerous demonstrations seen around the country.
Meanwhile, Venezuela remains the country with the largest known oil reserves in the world. It is a jewel created with a divine wealth, but it is battered by a ruling class that threatens the “good luck” that the gods shed upon the land.
Nicolas Maduro has no understanding about his people. He does not even understand the Chavistas anymore. It is a gross display of personal and political failure that is an example of someone who does not understand what it means to govern.
The region was one of the most successful in increasing the income of the poorest 40% of the population, but in countries like Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Brazil and Paraguay, more than half of this group continues to live under the threshold of poverty.
Rousseff is puzzled because she has not understood the power of the new political dynamics imposed by the communications revolution. Maduro simply does not know that ruling means anticipating and achieving a mix of strength and weakness so that people do not erupt in protest.
With these social differences, Latin America faces a new decade in an environment of low economic growth, both regionally and globally.
According to a report from the World Bank, the main challenges for the region in the coming years will be to focus on how to improve both quality of life and income for the 40% most disadvantaged. This, according to the report, will ensure that they do not return to poverty which in turn will help preserve the important achievements realized in the recent past.
This should be done without the help of the Bretton Woods institutions, which are largely responsible for the precarious situation in which America is America is as a whole.
Both the IMF and the World Bank have established standards of austerity and cuts in basic services that have much of the continent on the brink of collapse. For Latin America, it is time to seek other allies and partners in its race towards a brighter future.
In protesting against the “business as usual” situation, Latin Americans will also need to learn how to choose who leads them out of traditional ways of doing politics. As it has been widely demonstrated, no political ideology, no one single leader, no one single party has had the ability to lift the continent out of misery. It is time to stop voting for a face, a name, a party and an ideology and to start voting for people who promise less and works harder.
Both the people and the politicians may want to envision a Latin America free from corporate and bureaucratic colonialism.