chapter  2
18 Pages

Latin America at the Crossroads of Change

In Latin America over 5,000 state enterprises, many of them lucrative, in the resource extraction industry, banks, telecommunications and other industries, passed into the hands of global capital in the form of multinational corporations, as well as privately controlled local capital. While the statement had greater symbolic than substantive consequences, it does reflect a certain reality: while the North plunges into deeper, unending crisis, Latin America is doing reasonably well. During the 1980s Latin America experienced a deep and persistent crisis, manifested in negative growth. Economically, politically and socially the 'North' has been 'Latin Americanized': social instability, economic stagnation, political alienation, growing class inequalities and poverty is presided over by corrupt political elites. While the problem of class inequality was initially soothed and papered over by the economic growth generated by the commodity boom of recent years. In Latin America, the crisis led to mass protests, popular uprisings and regime changes.