Week 5

Liberalism in Latin America was far from being as popular as it was in North America. Even today, I would say liberalism still makes a good portion of Latin American people look the other way. Much like it was said on the video, Latin America has a big a relatively recent history of slavery, and even after slavery was abolished a big history of discrimination, inequality and very poor working conditions. So after the protests and big social movements ensured better, fixed working conditions and minimum salaries for workers, very few people were willing to throw that aside to believe in liberalism.

Nowadays, we are seeing a surge of a liberalist wave occur all throughout Latin America, and really all over the world. More and more right wing candidates are being elected everyday. People are tired of the failing economy and corruption, and they believe right wing candidates are going to fix that.

For post independence Latin America, clientelism happened as a way of redividing the power, since the colonizers could no longer directly control the region. This redivision of power brought wealthy land owners many followers, and created a very strong sense of community. These people, mainly poor class, who suffered from injustice and inequality all their lives felt like they could get at least a slight sense of security and protection by joining the caudillos. Obviously there was also something in it for the wealthy landowner. By having his community he had a very strong electoral voting pool, which he could easily control, and so he held a lot of political power, by having a big influence in who would be elected next.

This way, it was very much in the interest of the wealthy people to keep this system going for as long as they could, and since they pretty much had total control over elections and politics, they kept liberalism at bay for indeed a very long time.

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