by Doug Casey, International Man:
What my favorite place in the world doesn’t have…
✔ Cultural conflicts
✔ An immigration crisis
✔ Political correctness
✔ High prices
✔ Hillary as its next president?
What it does have will surprise you…
Reading the news while enjoying a cortado at a café in my favorite place in the world often causes cognitive dissonance.
How, I ask myself, can life here be so tranquil when the rest of the world appears gripped by madness?
As you might suspect, the café is located in Argentina.
Sure, until recently, we had to put up with the antics of La Presidenta, Cristina Kirchner. But she was largely a bad joke ignored by Argentines with any intelligence.
She’s gone now, replaced by the free-market-oriented engineer Mauricio Macri.
While one can never know how these things turn out, from what I’ve seen so far, I think he’s going to make a huge difference in pretty much every way that counts.
Maybe Argentina won’t return to its former position as the sixth-largest economy in the world, as was the case in the early 20th century, but the conditions are right for the economy to do a rocket shot.
That’s usually the result when a new team sweeps away the spaghetti string of truly stupid socialist policies and lets an economy breathe.
China’s decades of stunning growth following Deng’s liberalization provides a useful lesson.
An Embarrassment of Riches
Then there’s the proven fact that Argentina has an abundance of natural resources including gold, copper, oil, and natural gas.
And there’s the famed Argentine agricultural land stretching from one end of the country to the other.
There are few countries in the world with the ability to be completely self-sustaining – Argentina is one of those.
Of personal importance to me, it also has a well-educated population, the most sophisticated in South America. Anyone worth knowing down here speaks two, three, or more languages.
That is due, in part, to the country’s legacy as one of only a handful of immigrant cultures in the world. Just like the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, and Canada.
What these countries have in common (besides geographically secure borders) are that, in the early days, hardworking settlers from around the world flocked to the country’s wide-open spaces.
In the case of Argentina, the indigenous population was largely overrun (it happens) by Spaniards, English, Italians, Germans, Irish, French, etc. – rugged pioneer types who set out to the new world to make their mark.
Unlike the current mess in Europe where the immigrants have brought their bad habits with them and refuse to assimilate, in Argentina the newcomers culturally assimilated into the modern Argentine. Generally speaking, a confident, lively, and fun-loving sort who, like the Europe of old, work to live, not the other way around.
Returning to the beginning of this letter, Argentina is a “café society,” where people love sharing ideas over leisurely lunches and late dinners. They enjoy life a lot, even when saddled with a poor government such as the one we’ve just seen the back of.
There is a reason that, out of all the places in the world I really enjoy, Argentina has filled that spot for many years now.
There are other reasons I’ll get back to in a moment but first, back to the cognitive dissonance.
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