Thursday, March 13, 2014
Latin America's surprising success story: how economic populism is transforming the most unequal region of the globe
Posted by Kathleen Geier
Across the U.S. and Europe, economic inequality continues to soar. But there's one place in the world where economic inequality is declining significantly: Latin America. Attention must be paid, for several important reasons. Latin America has long been the most unequal region in the world, so what's behind the decline? As I explain in my most recent Nation post, economic growth has something to do with it. But more important than the growth has been the wave of economic populism that's been been sweeping the region over the past decade, leading to redistribution, a sharp decrease in the poverty rate, and higher standards of living for working people throughout Latin America. These forms of populism take different forms, but one thing they they all share in common is a rejection the neoliberalism that marked the "lost decade" of the 1980s.