[Marxism] Gundin's piece on Friedman

Nestor Gorojovsky nestorgoro at fibertel.com.ar
Mon Dec 11 13:52:56 MST 2006


It is quite fitting that Gundin's piece on Friedman was recovered on 
Marxmail at the death date of Pinochet.

In fact, the piece is centered on Chile, and with lots of caveats but 
unmistakably, Chile can be defined as the place where the application 
of Friedman's theories was less harmful, not because of theories 
themselves but due to local circumstances too long to explain here.

On the other hand, the country most devastated by neoliberal 
policies, Argentina, almost does not exist in Gundin's comment.

A pity, because this is where you can best realize what it was that 
Friedman was bringing with him: quite strongly industrialized 
Argentina, heavily proletarianized Argentina, and not Chile, not even 
the forerunning Bolivia, is the choice, classical example as to what 
effects does neoliberalism have on a country. 

[BTW Same goes for the former Soviet Union as an example of what 
happens when capitalism is reintroduced in a country that has begun 
its road to socialism. According to polls, 70% of the citizens in 
Russia, Belarus and Ukraine would like the USSR "to be back here". 
Similar percentages would be found (or, better still, known if the 
private opinion polling firms disclosed their findings) in Argentina 
as regards pre-privatization times (not to speak of 1975!)]

I understand that Chile is more "savoury" to "Leftists" than 
Argentina, where history has put in the midst of the straightforward 
road to socialism such a nasty Fascist rock as Peronism (or Communist 
rock, if you believe the State Department, whose hatred Perón shares 
with Chávez, a hatred  almost as strong as some "Leftist" clownish 
Pope's hatred of Perón) . But this sad fact does not make Argentina a 
worse example than Chile. On the contrary, it is a better one, since 
it was a despicable "national bourgeois" regime (thus, a _capitalist_ 
regime) which built its industrial power, not an overtly socialist 
government. Friedmann's theses, in practice, destroy the achievements 
of _bourgeois_ regimes first and foremost. You don't need to turn 
Socialist in order to be destroyed by Friedmann's theories.

Has anyone in the English speaking Left made a complete analysis of 
Friedman's effects in Argentina?

Milton Friedman and the Economics of Empire
The Road from Serfdom

By GREG GRANDIN

Milton Friedman had no idea that his six-day trip to Chile in March 
1975 would generate so much controversy. He was invited to Santiago 
by a group of Chilean economists who over the previous decades had 
been educated at the University of Chicago, in a program set up by 
Friedman's colleague, Arnold Harberger. Two years after the overthrow 
of Allende, with the dictatorship unable to get inflation under 
control, the "Chicago Boys" began to gain real influence in General 

Este correo lo ha enviado
Néstor Miguel Gorojovsky
nestorgoro at fibertel.com.ar
[No necesariamente es su autor]
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"La patria tiene que ser la dignidad arriba y el regocijo abajo".
Aparicio Saravia
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