Neoliberal Macri Regime Trounced in Argentinian Elections

Last August, opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez and running mate/former President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner defeated President Mauricio Macri by a 47.22% to 32.36% margin. 

It was short of a majority triumph, requiring a electoral runoff. Center-right Roberto Lavagna came in third with 8.39% support.

In Sunday elections, Fernandez/de Kirchner triumphed decisively by 48% to Macri’s 40% support, above the 45% threshold to be able to declare victory in a two-party contest — results with 96% of votes counted as of Monday.

Argentinians rejected Macri’s neoliberal harshness, serving Western and internal monied interests at the expense of the general welfare — transforming the country into an economic basket case since taking office in December 2015.

Unemployment way exceeds the official Q II 10.6% level. Youth unemployment exceeds 25%. Underemployment affects most working Argentinians.

According to Trading Economics, annualized 2019 inflation exceeds 53% through September data, likely to top 55% by yearend.

Macri’s neoliberal harshness escalated after getting $57 billion in IMF financing in June 2018 — the largest amount ever by the notorious loan shark of last resort to any nation, what no responsible leader should have anything to do with.

Its predatory lending practices come with unacceptable strings, demanding privatization of state enterprises, mass layoffs, deregulation, deep social spending cuts, wage freezes or cuts, other corporate friendly policies, marginalizing trade unions, and harsh crackdowns on resisters.

It’s all about letting bankers and other corporate predators strip mine countries of their material wealth and resources, shifting them from public to private hands, crushing democratic values, hollowing out nations into dystopian backwaters, destroying middle class societies, and turning ordinary people able to find work into serfs earning poverty wages.

Reportedly, President-elect Fernandez will discuss restructuring of crushing Argentinian debt with creditors, much of it odious, notably IMF blood money, default a possibility for relief of an unacceptable public burden.

Argentina’s economy is on the brink of collapse. Desperate times call for tough measures to combat them.

Debt relief is essential, the country in deep recession, poverty and unemployment increasing, millions of ordinary people suffering from neoliberal rule dismissive of their rights and welfare.

One observer remarked that “(a)s in Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, almost everyone (in the Macri regime, investment community and IMF) had a hand in Argentina’s ongoing economic and financial debacle.”

Economic recovery depends on getting out from under the country’s crushing foreign debt burden.

On Monday, Telesur reported that President-elect Fernandez

“arrived at the presidential palace in Buenos Aires…for a meeting with outgoing incumbent Mauricio Macri where the two are expected to discuss the potentially tricky transition of power as financial markets watch closely.”

On December 10, Fernandez assumes office, a potentially major power shift ahead if neoliberal harshness is mitigated or abandoned in favor of governance serving everyone equitably.

Sunday’s electoral results rejected Macri’s rule, calling for positive change, wanting Fernandez to deliver.

At party headquarters, he thanked supporters, saying: “We’re going to be the Argentina that we deserve because it’s not true that we’re condemned to this Argentina,” adding:

“We’re going to enter the world with dignity. The government is back in the hands of the people!”

The jury is out on whether he’ll deliver as promised.


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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected]. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

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Articles by: Stephen Lendman

About the author:

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected] His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III." Visit his blog site at Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network. It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

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