FOUNTAINS OF WEALTH
There used to be a saying “as rich as an Argentine.” It was a dream that could easily have been reality for longer than the century during which it was true. Argentina was once second only to Great Britain in terms of wealth. That was a mere hundred years ago. Things changed rapidly in this country that once was the envy of not only South America but Europe and North America.
Argentina is an ideal country for money generation. It practically grows in the fields. The country is blessed with magnificent farmlands, mineral wealth, rivers, mountains, and natural ports on the Atlantic Ocean. Unfortunately, it’s also a political minefield with governments that seem to pride themselves on competing for “who can be the most incompetent and corrupt regime” in the nation’s history. Nepotism takes on a whole new meaning here as the current government is displaying. The current president, Cristina Kirchner is the widow of the prior president, Nestor Kirchner, who won the presidency with a whopping 22 percent of the votes cast after his opponent withdrew from the race.
Back in the late 1800s Argentina was literally minting money. Its economy was expanding on the back of mineral wealth and agriculture. It was too rich. And that resulted in massive waves of immigration. The wealth was controlled by a small group of elites and, as is usually the case, the rest of the population began to demand a share and a vote. At first, entitlement programs were small ...