Argentina + Einstein = x

Gorojovsky Gorojovsky at arnet.com.ar
Sat Feb 9 21:40:49 MST 2002


En relación a Re: Argentina + Einstein = x, 
el 9 Feb 02, a las 8:01, Louis Proyect dijo:

> In the latest issue of LBO which arrived in my mailbox the other day, 
> Doug Henwood departs from his usual USA-centric focus and offers up 
> an article (the first in a series apparently--I wait for the next 
> issue in 6 months or so with bated breath) that attempts to explain 
> why Argentina collapsed.
> 
> He says "the story is complicated, but the salient point is that its 
> early wealth was based on the export of grains and meats to Europe 
> and the U.S. This was not a sound foundation for a long-term 
> prosperity."

[...]

> Of course, Henwood's "analysis" begs the question of why New Zealand, 
> Canada and Australia, whose economies also revolved around grain 
> and/or meat exports, did not collapse as well.
> 

Ah, if only Henwood had written "revolved" instead of "based", and Lou had 
written "based" instead of "revolved"! 

This is not semantic hairsplitting. 

Lou's criticism is spotless IMHO, even though in my own opinion _he_ is wrong 
in writing that Oz and NZ's economies "revolved" around agricultural exports. 

The essential issue in the Argentinean tragedy is that agricultural exports 
were, for us, the equivalent of today's oil exports for Saudi Arabia. In this 
sense, the whole formation was determined by the export sector in a way that 
neither NZ nor Oz ever were. That is why _we_ "revolved around exports", while 
Oz and NZ were "based on exports".

In fact, one of the most adequate ways to teach how does imperialism work leans 
on a comparative analysis of the developmental trends (how technocratic I can 
become sometimes!) of Argentina-Uruguay, on the one side, and Australia-New 
Zealand, on the other.

The comparison with Canada is also adequate, although since Canada has been 
always gripped by its position between Western Europe and the USA, there are 
some differences that make the comparison a bit more complicated.

> 
> To answer these questions in my characteristically brontosaurus 
> Marxist fashion, I will begin my own series of articles. Drawing upon 
> Alejandro Bendaña's Harvard University dissertation on "British 
> Capital and Argentine Dependence 1816-1914", I will first of all try 
> to explain the roots of Argentina's long-term problems in imperialist 
> domination. Next I will try to explain what Peronism was and just as 
> importantly what it wasn't. Finally, I will deal with the post-Peron 
> era. In all 3 phases of Argentine history, I maintain that the 
> problems of development were, just like Sandinista Nicaragua, largely 
> subject to external domination. (I should mention, btw, that  
> Alejandro Bendaña was Tecnica's 'responsable' in Nicaragua and we had 
> occasion to meet with him frequently.)

I am looking forward to that series.

Néstor Miguel Gorojovsky
gorojovsky at arnet.com.ar

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Compañeros del exercito de los Andes. 

...La guerra se la tenemos de hacer del modo que podamos: 
sino tenemos dinero, carne y un pedazo de tabaco no nos 
tiene de faltar: cuando se acaben los vestuarios, nos 
vestiremos con la bayetilla que nos trabajen nuestras mugeres, 
y sino andaremos en pelota como nuestros paisanos los indios: 
seamos libres, y lo demás no importa nada...

Jose de San Martín, 27 de julio de 1819.

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