Argentina in the ’70s:

February 10, 2010

*Here are a couple paragraphs about what was going on in Argentina in the ’70s:*

Anyone suspected of favoring these groups (revolutionaries against the gov) or their ideas was subject to arbitrary arrest. All cultural life was now subjected to strict censorship. The government took control of all labor unions. People were kidnapped on the streets and never seen again. The prisons overflowed with political prisoners and torture was common. There were no trials or pretense of legal process. An estimated 11,000 Argentines disappeared between 1976 and 1982, called *los desaparecidos* or “the disappeared.” More than 30,000 people died during this period, many in Argentine concentration camps modeled after the Nazi camps. At the height of the horror, only the mothers and grandmothers of the disappeared had the courage to stand up to the government. Every Thursday, they began assembling in the Plaza de Mayo in front of the Presidential Palace, demanding information on their missing children. Conditions in the prisons were unfathomable. Prisoners were not allowed to lie down on their cots during the day, and the strain of this sometimes caused paralysis or atrophy of the legs. They were allowed no contact with family or friends, and most prisoners were afraid to write to loved ones, for fear they too would be targeted. Almost all letters were seized by the censors. The prisons would play sad songs by Julio Iglesias to deepen prisoners’ depression (no kidding). Prison guards would stage fake escapes and executions with mannequins to scare the prisoners. When a prisoner was moved out of his cell, he had to keep his eyes straight ahead; one glance over his shoulder meant loss of all privileges and possible torture. Newspapers and radios were banned insider the prison. Only books written before the French Revolution were in prison libraries.

Prisoners were experimented on with tranquilizer darts, were tortured with cattle prods, had the soles of their feet beaten with batons, had metal buckets placed on their heads and then the buckets hammered, had electrical wires applied to breasts, vaginas, anuses, penises, tongues, and other body parts. In some cases, prisoners’ bellies were slit open and they were dropped in a river as “fish food.” Some were thrown out of airplanes fully conscious. The length of sentences was completely arbitrary and had nothing to do with the “crime” committed, and at the end of the prison term, the prisoner or his family had to pay the state back for the cost of his imprisonment or he would not be released.

*And here is what was declassified in 2003 about America’s opinions of what the Argentine Gov was doing:* In 2003, the *Miami Herald* published proof that America and the Ford administration had approved of this brutal military regime. According to a recently declassified U.S. government document, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger told the Argentine foreign minister in 1976, at the height of the Dirty War, that America supported the Argentine government. The transcript of the meeting between Kissinger and Argentine Navy Admiral César Augusto Guzzetti in New York is the first documentary evidence that the Ford administration approved of the junta’s harsh tactics. “Look, our basic attitude is that we would like you to succeed,” Kissinger reassured Guzzetti in the seven-page transcript, marked *SECRET*. “I have an old-fashioned view that friends ought to be supported. What is not understood in the United States is that you have a civil war. We read about human rights problems but not the context. The quicker you succeed, the better.” The Argentine military regime was delighted.

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Cry for Me, Argentina!

January 4, 2010

**another chain letter I received:

_______________________________________

In the early 20th century, Argentina was one of the richest countries in the world. While Great Britain ‘s maritime power and its far-flung empire had propelled it to a dominant position among the world’s industrialized nations, only the United States challenged Argentina for the position of the world’s second-most powerful economy.

It was blessed with abundant agriculture, vast swaths of rich farmland laced with navigable rivers and an accessible port system. Its level of industrialization was higher than many European countries: railroads, automobiles and telephones were commonplace.

In 1916, a new president was elected. Hipólito Irigoyen had formed a party called The Radicals under the banner of “fundamental change” with an appeal to the middle class. (“Fundamental change”… now where have I heard that recently?)

Among Irigoyen’s changes: mandatory pension insurance, mandatory health insurance, and support for low-income housing construction to stimulate the economy. Put simply, the state assumed economic control of a vast swath of the country’s operations and began assessing new payroll taxes to fund its efforts. (Beginning to sound more familiar?)

With an increasing flow of funds into these entitlement programs, the government’s payouts soon became overly generous. Before long its outlays surpassed the value of the taxpayers’ contributions. Put simply, it quickly became under-funded, much like our Social Security and Medicare programs. (As will our Health Care and other programs!)

The death knell for the Argentine economy, however, came with the election of Juan Perón. Perón had a fascist and corporatist upbringing; he and his charismatic wife aimed their populist rhetoric at the nation’s rich. (Sounds more and more like our current death march into total collapse!)

This targeted group “swiftly expanded to cover most of the propertied middle classes, who became an enemy to be defeated and humiliated.” (And, more!)

Under Perón, the size of government bureaucracies exploded through massive programs of social spending and by encouraging the growth of labor unions. (Do you see the light?)

High taxes and economic mismanagement took their inevitable toll even after Perón had been driven from office. But his populist rhetoric and “contempt for economic realities” lived on. Argentina’s federal government continued to spend far beyond its means. (Can’t happen here you say…Yes it Can!)

Hyperinflation exploded in 1989, the final stage of a process characterized by “industrial protectionism, redistribution of income based on increased wages, and growing state intervention in the economy…” (Will Never Happen Here…it has already begun!)

The Argentinean government’s practice of printing money to pay off its public debts had crushed the economy. Inflation hit 3000%, reminiscent of the Weimar Republic . Food riots were rampant; stores were looted; the country descended into chaos. (Impossible! Do not wait to STOP IT!!!)

And by 1994, Argentina ‘s public pensions — the equivalent of Social Security — had imploded. The payroll tax had increased from 5% to 26%, but it wasn’t enough. In addition, Argentina had implemented a value-added tax (VAT), new income taxes, a personal tax on wealth, and additional revenues based upon the sale of public enterprises. These crushed the private sector, further damaging the economy. (Can only happen in those lesser countries! No, ARGENTINA was a World power stronger than the US!)

A government-controlled “privatization” effort to rescue seniors’ pensions was attempted. But, by 2001, those funds had also been raided by the government, the monies replaced by Argentina ‘s defaulted government bonds. (Hmmmm….just what is about to happen in the US!!!)

By 2002, “…government fiscal irresponsibility… induced a national economic crisis as severe as America ‘s Great Depression.” (Will we set on our hands and let that happen again… will we?)

We’ve seen this movie before. The politician’s populist plans NEVER work, because power corrupts and government bankrupts everything it touches. For those that will listen, history shouts over and over that we cannot sustain the wild spending and government takeover of business, banking, health care, and continue to inflate unfunded entitlement programs! Like history tells us, it will be utter and complete disaster!!!

Today’s politicians are guilty of more than arrogant stupidity; they are enslaving future generations to poverty and misery. And they will be long gone when it all implodes. They will be as cold and dead as Juan Perón when your children and grand children must ultimately pay for the blind arrogance of politicians!

THINK AMERICA !

WE ARE ALLOWING POLITICIANS TO REPEAT THE FAILURES OF HISTORY!

VOTE EVERY DEMOCRAT OUT OF PUBLIC OFFICE FOR THE NEXT TEN YEARS OR THE ABOVE WILL BE YOUR FATE AND MINE FOREVER!!

THINK…. AND ACT ! !

PS…. while working America cuts back… Congress just increased “government expenditures” by 12% in the “Omnibus” spending bill of nearly half a TRILLION!

Here is just one example of “Government” waste…last year there was ONE person in the entire Dept. of Transportation making over $170,000!
This year that same “Government” Dept. has 1690 people making over $170,000! They are paid over $300,000,000 of our tax dollars for what????

Is your employer, or ANY company, doing that well? NO, they’re losing their business, being forced to lay off tax-payers, and having Democrats increase their taxes.
AND, this Democrat sponsored Omnibus bill has 5,224 earmarks (totally waste-full pork-barrel pay-offs) totaling $4,000,000,000! That’s your wasted taxes and mine tossed to the wind without a single care for the hard, hard work we women (and men) put into our jobs!