Tuesday, January 09, 2024

Same Old?


But of course the libertarian jack-in-a-box was immediately sprung when this cabinet was announced: “una farsa”.

Her critique seemed to be that Bernie is “same old” in 🐑’s clothing, having added a smattering of ‘experience’ to his cabinet. 
The appointment that irked most was not mentioned in this article: Jazmín de la Vega, who served under Berger, not uncontroversially, and has more recently been the female face of CACIF, Guatemala’s guild of the guilded, an organisation many thought was set to be neutered by the new regime.
But Bernie is a career diplomat, so did anyone really expect him to go all Marshal Ney before his administration had even started? Just to have made it this far he has had to carefully detach key allegiances from the coup-mongering clique. 
And you don’t have to have attended Francisco Marroquín to know how Guatemala’s last spring came undone. Árbenz neglected to take proper note of vested interests in his initial enthusiasm for transformative initiatives. 
One would hope the nextgen primaveristas have internalised that lesson. Even if the danger of a reactionary coup has been sidelined, what we also don’t need to see is a Semilla administration fighting some sort of desperate, isolated, Rorke’s Drift rearguard action for four years, unable to do little more than survive. This government has to become the start of something lasting. As they say in Costa Rica: Pura Vida.
So, no need for the firework display (Milei, Bukele...), rather something more like fearlessness of a practical kind. The specific objectives ought to be husbanding the various sectors of wealth creation, while fixing the really serious issues like the health system and infrastructure. This is the largest economy in Central America so the simple tactic of cleaning up the way public monies are allocated should deliver significant if not spectacular benefits. 
I'd advise some caution with the deployment of so-called independent oversight as we have seen how these can be turned on their heads by the lowlifes. 
As well as being evenly split in terms of gender, the incoming regime includes a couple of scientists and an archaeologist. Bernie himself counts as an historian.

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