THE DOWNFALL OF ARGENTINA -
By Carlos Aznárez
Every newspaper in ARGENTINA is reporting on facts that seem to have no connection with each other but, actually, are part of the same scheme. On the one hand, a President, in this case MAURICIO MACRI, affirms he will repatriate 18 million pesos from the BAHAMAS (one million 304 thousand dollars), to invest it in local bonds that his own administration will issue. This initiative was announced as the President’s “great gesture” — the same President who was denounced in the PANAMA Papers—, since he is showing everyone he has confidence in the country’s’ new era, and it will also be accompanied by a tax amnesty bill that must first be approved in the National Congress.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD THE HEAD OF STATE WOULD BE INDICTED – NOT SO IN ARGENTINA
This situation, which in any other part of the world that adheres to the basic foundations of legality and where there are at least a little ethics in the government’s actions, would be considered a crime (worsened due to the fact that the people involved are civil servants).
But under MACRI’S rule this has become an honest gesture while receiving the applauses of the hegemonic media, the same media that constantly attacks VENEZUELA and doesn’t hesitate to praise the Presidential decision. Businessmen welcomed the measure for considering it “healthy” and, at the same time, because it opens the possibility of laundering dirty money, which comes mostly from kickbacks or other “benefits” provided by businesses that usually gestate at the high levels of power.
But, of course, MACRI is not the only one. Some officials of his cabinet are following in his steps. CARLOS MELCONIÁN, President of the National Bank, who has made clear that he is partial to these practices as well (1). He confessed, without fear or shame: “As many ARGENTINES, I have money stashed abroad. Of course, I will bring some of it back”, and he will repatriate the rest as soon as investors “regain confidence” in the local economy. (In six month of ruling the new administration was unable to curb in inflation which stands at a staggering 48 %!)
NO FAITH IN THE COUNTRY AND ITS POLITICAL SYSTEM
“Then, I will bring the money”, he shamelessly concluded. It seems to be a joke but in fact, it’s true: if the President of the main Bank in ARGENTINA has no certainty on the effects of his own administration, what can he ask of the 40 million ARGENTINE people, who are suffering layoffs, increments in services fees, hunger and, as in the 90s, are seeking a way out of the hopelessness of the situation.
This is what “MACRISMO” represents: the right-wing, the neoliberal model and the foreign policy of the US on the continent. The great problem is that, on the other side of the ring, things are not better. Or, in worlds of a Peronist leader: “You suck”. Every illegal activity that comes to light operates in service of a sector that wants to hide other illegal activities, and so on. Now, we could state once again: “they are all thieves”.
As happened in BRAZIL with some of the higher officials of the Workers’ Party, it’s evident that here too the former cabinet has also had some undesirable characters who didn’t hesitate to steal, become corrupted and promote that attitude with impunity. If the treasurer of the Workers’ Party, JOACO VACCARI (imprisoned) pocketed 70 million dollars of bribes and DILMA’S publicist, JOAO SANTANA (also imprisoned) payed himself extra wages of various million dollars as a price for the corruption scheme of Petrobras, then here some people have not fallen behind in terms of high-level corruption.
THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY IS THE MOST CORRUPTED INDUSTRY IN THE WORLD
The recent example of former Secretary of Public Works, JOSÉ LÓPEZ, throwing bags full of money up the walls of a Convent after having unearthed them from another hiding place when he was notified that he was being persecuted. Nine million dollars seem to be an exaggerated amount of money for a saver, but this is actually only a small portion of the actual number of pesos, dollars, euros, etc. that he and other officials have been receiving in the past years as investments for public work.
SHARE OF THE CAKE – PLUNDER OF THE COUNTRY CONTINUES…..
In fact, it was well-known that on both the national and local level, some officials have asked for bribes of up to 60% to carry out projects. Another Secretary, from Transportation, in the past government called RICARDO JAIME had been caught in a similar transaction and is now imprisoned with several judicial cases against him. A long list of MACRISTAS officials are charged with similar “achievements”, but are not imprisoned because it is time for them to rule and the roles have changed now.
“Disgust” is the proper world but it doesn’t seem to be enough to express the anger generated by this situation, in which both the progressive and neoliberal agents are unified in the plan to plunder the country, generating more hopelessness in new generations, who feel embarrassed when looking at these politicians of the bourgeois democracies as they build a system of impunity to continue earning dirty money.
What happened with JOSÉ LÓPEZ is not a coincidence but part of a scheme in which corruption is naturalized in a sector that allegedly raised the “national and popular” flags, but who in fact (not all of them) wanted to fill their pockets with the brutality of the capitalist thinking. As they collected more and more money in their bags or off-shore bank accounts, the more powerful they felt when “doing politics”. LOPEZ is JULIO DE VIDO’S man. Both of them were part of the permanent staff of the KIRCHNER era. The lack of utterance makes us wonder. And the main explanation to this is not related to loyalty or efficiency but to operative groups in administrations that were not always fully legal. What happened this time can’t be allocated to media campaigns nor conspiracies, but to those who raised flags that didn’t belong to them, soiled with the blood of real men and women of the country, and now tainted with dirty money.
CAN’T HIDE DIRTY MONEY? – SIMPLY IMPLEMENT A TAX AMNESTY
MACRI and his friends can’t hide their illegal activities and that’s why they are trying to approve the tax amnesty —with help of forces from the opposition who vote together in the National Parliament and the BUENOS AIRES legislature— just like LÓPEZ, JAIME and others are now being chased by their same colleagues, with different political colors but actually in a similar situation, and all with the same aim of maintaining the system. This is what we should repudiate and fight, in this complex scenario, which looks a lot like BRAZIL—. These are, with little differences, the facilities with which the regional right operates comfortably in each country.