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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Brilliant Gonzalo Lira Talks About Lula, Chavez and John Boehner

A Little Fluffy, But Worth Reading

PIMCO’s Mohamed El-Erian writes a fluffy but generally accurate assessment of Lula Da Silva’s tenure as Brazil’s president that’s worth reading.

Brazil’s Lula Da Silva
Something El-Eriandoesn’t mention—yet should have—is the contrast between Da Silva’s tenure in Brazil, and that fool Hugo Chávez in Venezuela.

Both were lefties, both faced big problems with the poor, a financial mess, and a socially stratified country—yet Da Silva did the job good, while Chávez is driving Venezuela off the cliff.

Notice, as El-Erian points out, that Da Silva did not need to give up his social goals in order to achieve sustained growth—there’s no contradiction between growing markets and improving social conditions for the poor.

Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez
That’s why Chávez screwed up a country as rich as Venezuela: Like not only old-style Leftists, but old-style Rightists, Hugo Chávez thought that social justice and a booming capitalist economy were mutually incompatible.

Lula Da Silva was smart enough to realize there was no such incompatibility—and acted accordingly.

See what happened to Venezuela, for having this old-style mentality.

See what is going to happen to the United States, with the incoming 112th Congress.

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker
John Boehner