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Argentina Votes to #EndTheFed

DKI readers are well-aware of my view that the size and expenses of the US government are unsustainable, and that Congress has decided to fund trillions of dollars of spending with inflation-causing debt (dollar-creation). Further, this fiscal malfeasance is enabled by the Federal Reserve, an institution that instead of maintaining any kind of financial order, simply blows up massive asset bubbles every decade or so.

Argentina has made the US Congress look like sharp-pencil fiscal conservatives. In doing so, they have squandered massive advantages including a large geography with natural resources and a huge coastline, an educated populace, and excellent infrastructure. I’ve been told that over 40% of the country is on public assistance, and that the public-sector unions have a stranglehold on spending. Tax policy is designed in such a way that business owners almost have to use offshore subsidiaries to get anything done, and the country is so short on dollars that business has ground to a halt due to inability to pay for foreign imported parts and materials.

Unsurprisingly, the inflation rate accelerated from about 100% last year to over 140% this year. I spent a month in Buenos Aires earlier this year, and for those of you interested in some personal stories from the people there, please check out these threads. These are all stories collected from real people I met there. You do not need to be a Twitter/X user to read these.

My cab driver and the tragedy of Argentina: https://twitter.com/Gary_Brode/status/1621213230113619969

Could you rent an apartment if you lived in Buenos Aires: https://twitter.com/Gary_Brode/status/1625269147050381315

The currency disaster is worse than it appears: https://twitter.com/Gary_Brode/status/1621565987681173505

Could you do business in Argentina legally: https://twitter.com/Gary_Brode/status/1628168747667140608

A funny comment from a young lady on inflation: https://twitter.com/Gary_Brode/status/1624786728367140864

After decades of big Peronist government, Argentina voted for freedom. The country elected anarcho capitalist, Javier Milei, as the new President. With some votes left to be counted, it looks like he’s around 56% to 44% for the current President, Sergio Massa. Massa has conceded graciously. Milei wants to slash the size of Argentina’s government, put the country on the dollar standard which would immediately give them our inflation rate instead of theirs, and he wants to get rid of Argentina’s version of the Federal Reserve.

The US and Canada are moving toward greater government size and more citizen surveillance, and Mexico is still having issues with its drug cartels controlling much of the country. Meanwhile, in South America, in addition to Argentina electing an anarcho capitalist, El Salvador has seen its murder rate drop by 97% since adopting the Bitcoin standard. South America’s citizens are becoming open to a greater degree of individual freedom and less government control. It’s my desire that the US, the UK, the EU, and Japan watch this, and embrace the same economic freedom that created the high standard of living we currently enjoy.

While it is encouraging that Argentinians have voted enthusiastically for freedom and for individual liberty over populist collectivism, I’m skeptical that Milei will be able to transform a country and a people who have lived under populist socialism for decades. Milei is an individual, not the head of a party or movement. He will take over the Presidency, but the rest of the legislature is part of the establishment and will resist his policies. In addition, just like here in the US, there is a large unelected government bureaucracy that likes having guaranteed paychecks. We can expect them to do all they can to sabotage Milei’s plans. Finally, the labor unions are going to fight hard to maintain their status and financial benefits. It’s rare that one person can transform a country without the cooperation of many others.

I hope I’m wrong about this last part. I’ve visited Argentina twice and love it there. The people are beautiful, warm, and smart. On behalf of DKI, we wish you incredible success on the new path you’ve charted.

 

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