Friday, February 23, 2007

Latin American Citizens Are Politically Sophisticated

In a Washington Post hit piece out on Hugo Chavez today, the virtues of free market capitalism and trade agreements were extolled while Chavez was painted negatively. He deserves it in many areas. He has an authoritarian streak that I find quite disturbing.
However, this article, probably endorsed by the US chamber of commerce, and the ghost of United fruit did have a moment of truth mixed in with the pro coporate agenda.

Although Chávez frequently travels to foreign capitals to lambaste Washington, it's not so clear that Latin Americans favor the Venezuelan president's prescriptions, even if their governments are happy to accept his aid. According to a recent survey of 20,200 people in 18 countries by Latinobarómetro, a Chilean polling firm, most Latin Americans lumped Chávez with Fidel Castro and President Bush as bad leaders, citing Brazil's Lula and Chile's Bachelet as the best. And most of those polled classified themselves as political moderates .

In Latin America, they distrust Bush and Chavez. Today I am a latin american too. Much of the time, the rest of the world has a more nuanced approach to politics than here in the US of A. You don't have to choose A or B. You can dislike authoritarian Chavez at the same time you don't trust authoritarian Bush. Our two party system has set up this mindset that there are only two options and you have to embrace one of the two, which of course is a falsity.

Viva Latin America!