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In a wide-ranging survey that illuminates both the history and present business climate of the region, Paul Craig Roberts and Karen Araujo describe the economic transformation currently taking place in Latin America. And as they do so, they also reexamine many of the prevailing orthodoxies concerning international development and the regulation of markets, and point to the success of privatization and free enterprise in Mexico, Argentina, and Chile as harbingers of the economic future for both hemispheres. The book describes the efforts of the Salinas, Pinochet, and Menem governments to combat the established interests of the local elites and the international development agencies, to privatize state industries, and to establish independent markets. In this new climate, private capitalists and entrepreneurs are feted and celebrated, and productivity has risen to levels unimagined only a few years before. But this dramatic economic turnaround, the authors show, is a mixed blessing for the United States. For if it provides us with a vast new market for our goods, it has also created a powerful new competitor for capital investment. To keep American and foreign capitalists investing in America, the government needs to make changes, which the authors outline in a provocative conclusion.
Paul Craig Roberts is Chairman of the Institute for Political Economy in Washington, D.C. and Research Fellow of the Independent Institute in Oakland, California. A former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, he is a columnist for Business Week and a director of companies with business interests in Latin America. Karen Lafollette Araujo is President of the Hemispheric Studies Institute, Research Associate at the Institute for Political Economy, Research Fellow of the Independent Institute, and Visiting Fellow of the Universidad Nacional Andres Bello, in Santiago, Chile.