My HeyDay

Sometimes I think it is my mission to bring faith to the faithless, and doubt to the faithful

Five Days to Go...

Despite the fact that I live at the gates of the most Salvadoran neighborhood in DC, and I'm supposed to be familiar with Latin American politics, the last name I could ever know would be the El Salvador president, Elías Antonio Saca González. As the country's resemblances with the 2001 Argentinean meltdown were becoming obvious, the guy recently tried to enact a tax reform that would increase tax pressure over corporations and the private sector, to end the traditional fiscal deficit of the Salvadoran state. As usual, the big corporations lobbied against the reform and forced the removal of the finance minister, thus blocking the tax reform.

Some day, my dissertation (supposedly) will explain why this sort of things happen all the time in Latin America, and why many countries, like El Salvador, end with a tax system based mainly in regressive sales taxes (60% of total taxation). This sort of policy equilibrium forces the working class and low-middle class to bear the lion's share of the tax burden, also neutralizing any real attempt of establishing real redistributive policies. And in the long run, the level of inequality gets crazy: 0.52 in the last UNDP report, one of the highest in the world. And there is a well established DUH!-like bulk of knowledge on why inequality is not just ethically wrong, but also happens to kill and to hinder human development. And if democracies don't correct those imbalances at some point, you don't have to wait too long to see bands of people with torches messing around. Or, as it is the case of El Salvador, joining the maras (gangs). The US deported exported more than 20.000 gang members from south Cali back to El Salvador, exacerbating the problems of a country already over-populated.

Anyway, I already plotted the route on the map (the good thing about planning trips is that you are never able to follow your own plans):

I officially love Google Earth
5 days to go...


7 Responses to “Five Days to Go...”

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