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The Real Reason Brazil Can Still Be "The Country Of The Future"
08-13-2016, 02:53 PM,
The Real Reason Brazil Can Still Be "The Country Of The Future"
The Real Reason Brazil Can Still Be "The Country Of The Future"

<p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Tho Bishop via The Mises Institute,</em></a></p>
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<p><a href="" target="_blank">Writing this week for Bloomberg</a>, Tyler Cowan made the case that Brazil is &ldquo;still the country of the future.&rdquo; While I share Cowan&rsquo;s optimism for the nation&rsquo;s future, his focus on the country&rsquo;s diversity, size, and vaguely federalized political structure overlooks the real story &ndash; that <strong>Austrian economics and libertarianism is winning the battle of ideas within the country.</strong></p>
<p>As Reason <a href="" target="_blank">recently highlighted in&nbsp;an excellent short documentary</a>, <strong>Brazil is home to one of the fastest-growing and accomplished liberty movements in the world.</strong> Not only did organizations like the <a href="">Mises Brasil</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Students for Liberty Brazil</a> and the Free Brasil Movement play a pivotal role in the suspension of president Dilma Rousseff but, as I love to point out, Ludwig von Mises is now the most searched economist in the country. More impressive still, <a href=";geo=BR&amp;q=%2Fm%2F0cpvcd,%2Fm%2F032r1,%2Fm%2F04z0g,%2Fm%2F052h3,%2Fm%2F09gnn" target="_blank">as of last month</a>, F.A. Hayek was searched more than John Maynard Keynes and Murray Rothbard was searched more than Milton Friedman. This is an incredible testament to the work of Mises Brasil, <a href="" target="_blank">Instituto Rothbard</a> and the other organizations within the country dedicated to spreading Austro-libertarian ideas.</p>
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<p><u><strong>The importance of this ideological shift can&rsquo;t be overstated. </strong></u>After all, outside of his references to the current Olympic games and President Dilma&nbsp;Rouseff&rsquo;s impeachment saga, there isn&rsquo;t much in Cowan&rsquo;s article that wasn&rsquo;t true when&nbsp;<em>The Economist&nbsp;</em>was c<a href="" target="_blank">elebrating the country on its cover in 2009</a>. <strong><em>That the country today&nbsp;<a href=";rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=web&amp;cd=1&amp;cad=rja&amp;uact=8&amp;ved=0ahUKEwiN0piOrbzOAhWCdSYKHXYGC4AQFggcMAA&amp;;usg=AFQjCNGtUQQv9f-QGId8q6j8KHRtnERslg&amp;sig2=haW3g2A0KH9GNDnf9T9xjA" target="_blank">is in the midst</a>&nbsp;of its greatest economic crisis&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">in over a century</a>&nbsp;is an illustration that for all the resources Brazil may have as a country, only a nation with an intellectual climate that embraces markets and property rights can enjoy the fruits of sustained prosperity. Brazilians have the same choice as their&nbsp;their northern neighbors in <a href="">Venezuela: capitalism or chaos</a>. &nbsp;</em></strong></p>
<p><u><strong>If there is a silver lining to be found in Brazil's debilitating economic crisis is that it&nbsp;has made increasingly obvious the failings of&nbsp;the leftist status quo</strong></u>. As the funding for&nbsp;public services has been cut back, in part to pay for an&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">over-budget Olympic Games</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">the corrupt cronies they attract</a>, the market has been able to step in and provide vital services.</p>
<p>For example, as police officers protest budget cuts with&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">signs reading &ldquo;Welcome to Hell,&rdquo;</a>&nbsp;private security forces have&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">filled the gap during</a>&nbsp;the Olympic games. With&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">over 60% of Brazilians</a>&nbsp;fearing their country's police forces, in large part due to&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">the growing number of police-related deaths</a>, the demand for private protection&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">has grown throughout the country</a>.</p>
<p>Another socialized failure highlighted by this year&rsquo;s Olympic games is the disastrous sewage situation in Brazil. With headlines around the world focusing on the&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">serious health risks posed</a>&nbsp;to any athlete that has exposure to the sewage-filled water in Rio, there is growing&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">momentum to privatize Cedae</a>, the state-owned water and sewage company. Like many of Brazil&rsquo;s public companies, including the state-operated oil giant Petrobas that brought down Rousseff,&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Cedae is now under investigation</a>&nbsp;for corruption.</p>
<p>Perhaps most importantly, private education has been thriving in Brazil. With laws allowing for the rise of for-profit universities in Brazil being passed in the 90&rsquo;s, millions have gone through Brazilian private universities&nbsp;and the industry has <a href="" target="_blank">attracted billions</a>&nbsp;of dollars from international investors, <a href="" target="_blank">with double digit growth since 2010</a>. One major advantage of increased privatization of education is greater curriculum specialization and flexibility, which is particularly helpful given the diverse population Cowan highlighted. With Brazil&rsquo;s significant Japanese and German speaking populations, the growing education market allows for schooling that can meet the specific demands for individual communities.</p>
<p><strong>The fact that there is growing public sentiment supporting the privatization is a testament to the cultural changes that have taken place within the country. </strong>As Elena Landau, a former economist for Brazil&rsquo;s development bank, has said,&nbsp;&quot;Privatization is no longer a taboo.&rdquo; This is in large part due to the incredible work of the various organizations within the country dedicated to spreading&nbsp;capitalism.</p>
<p>As Mises said in his book <a href=""><em>Economic Policy</em></a>, <em><strong>&ldquo;Everything that happens in the social world in our time is the result of ideas. Good things and bad things.&ldquo;</strong></em></p>
<p>If Brazil truly is &ldquo;the country of the future,&rdquo; it will due to it embracing the ideas of Mises, Hayek, and Rothbard.&nbsp;</p>
<p><span style="line-height: 25.0001px;"><u><strong>The growing numbers of Brazilians&nbsp;dedicated to spreading capitalism and liberty are&nbsp;the greatest resource Brazil has. </strong></u></span></p>

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