By mid-March, United States’ president, Barack Obama, will begin a historical trip through the Caribbean and Latin America. First stop will be in Havana, Cuba, where he seeks to consolidate the progress made on subjugating Castro’s regime to imperialism, in which the Pope, by the way, has had a major importance.
Then, Obama will come to Argentina. he will be here on March 24th, 40th anniversary of the genocide military coup of 1976. With this, he is showing his support to Macri’s government which, as we will evidence later on, in a very short time has already given decisive steps aligning the country to the current imperalism policy for Latin America.
What is this policy about?
In the previous decade, Latin America was signed by governments like Hugo Chávez, Nestor and Cristina Kirchner, Evo Morales, Lula and Dilma. Thee governments, which were the distorted result of the outbreaks and mass mobilization processes during the 00’s, took advantage of the improvements of national economies (based on petroleum and soy prices’ rise, among other commodities) to give a closure to those mobilization processes; they had social policies to improve workers’ and people life conditions -compared to the previous period, of course.
This does not mean big multinationals did not take profits out of it. On the contrary, with the increasing consumption, the constant devaluations and the precarization of work conditions (which allows them to reduce the investment on salaries), multinational companies got strongly benefited.
However, all of this is not enough, in the frame of the world crisis development. This is why the Powers point to increase pillaging and exploitation of the entire region, as to maintain banks and multinational companies’ profits, each time more threatened by the crisis.
The previous period governments were already implementing the new lines of imperialism, by strongly adjusting the population and re-negotiating their debts. But Macri’s government is one of the firsts on the region to fully assume the flags of capitalist austerity with no shame whatsoever, leaving aside the flags of Populism. Like recently, in Davos Forum, where Macri was enthusiastically acclaimed by many of the main capitalists of the world because of his public statements.
This is not at all a symbolic gesture. Following the orders of New York Judge Griesa, the one driving the trial with the ‘vulture funds’, which rejected Kirchner’s proposals of re-structuration of the debt in 2005 and 2010, Macri is preparing the derogation of two bills -the Bolt Bill and the Sovereign Payment Bill-, which limitate the level of indebtness and the payments to this fraude the external debt actually is. So the offer to pay US$6500 millions to the vulture funds is just the first step of a long road of submission to the international usurers.
Together with this handing-over of the country to the financial funds, Macri already made effective the elimination/reduction of exportation taxes for the agro-industrial sector. This policy, combined with a growing elimination of subsidies to industrial and services companies, unleashed a true jump of internal prices, fuelled by the devaluation, calculated in a 40% rate so far, and considered insufficient by many bourgeois sectors. All of this, in addition to the elimination of the currency exchange control, which partially held the profit remittances of banks and multinationals to outside the country.
So Macri has completed in ten weeks a series of changes that can be summarized as: the reduction of 30% of workers’ income, and a transfer of 30.000 million dollars to bankers, vulture funds and imperialist monopolies.
So… what is Obama comming to Latin America for?
Obama is comming to tell Macri he is going through the right path. And that he is a true standar bearer of the austerity plan for Argentina and Latin America. Nevertheless, we cannot avoid acknowledging Obama is seen by many people as a “more friendly” character than Bush, specially for Latin America. In this regard, the first back president of the United States, the Nobel Peace Prize, comes to improve Macri’s image and to congratulate him for his work in Human Rights.
For the United States president to come on the anniversary of the bloodthirsty coup of fourty years ago, serving the multinationals, driven by the USA to the entire region through the Operation Condor, is nothing less than outrageous. Undoubtedly, the date choice was not by chance. Will Obama come seeking for the sympathy of the Argentinian people, one the most anti-USA countries of the world, even questioning the action of his country during the process of dictatorships in the region?
Although we cannot say yet, it is something we cannot discard. In fact, Pérez Esquivel recently stated he received a letter from Obama, saying “he recognizes we were right: the United States’ Government was responsible for the coups in Latin America”. No matter what speech he comes with, as always in history, nothing good can come to our continent from the claws of the imperial eagle. Sometimes with sympathy, others by force, what USA is doing is trying to expand its economic and political control over our continent.
In the face of this, the Argentinian people and workers have the opportunity of showing the world our rejection to Macri and his godfather Obama; of expressing on the streets our rejection to the austerity plan being implemented, imposed by the bankers and multinationals, at a continental and national level, to make us pay for the crisis they generated. And we have to pportunity of saying, during the bicentenary of the Declaration of our First Independence, that workers’ and people of the continent must raise for our Second Independence, for them not to sink us in a missery hole.
Vital measures for the Second Independence
-To not acknowledge or pay the fraudulent external debt. To reject the derogation of the Bolt and Sovereign Payment Bills. For that money to be destined to health, education, housing, and to fight violence against women.
-No to the prices increasement. Stop subsiding private companies. Statization and nationalization, under workers’ control, of natural resources and land; foreign trade and finances; industry, services and transportation.
-Immediate prohibition of dismissals. For the distribution of necessary working hours among all workers, with no salary reduction. Permanent jobs for all temporary and contracted workers.
-40% raise for all workers. No salary under the family basket price. Trigger clause to fight inflation. Moving 82% for retirees.
-Public works’ plan, to create jobs for current unemployed people, to build 3 million houses, hospitals, schools, and health and energy networks, and every other popular need, guarateeing effective jobs, with salary equal to the family basket.
-Strong progressive taxes to big fortunes. Suppresion of VAT and Wage Tax.
 The Bolt Bill –Ley Cerrojo– allows the government to reopen the negotiation of debt bonds for the so called holdouts, for about 20.000 million dollars. The Sovereign Payment Bill disposes the creation of a special account of Nación Fideicomisos S.A in the Central Bank of Argentine Republic, “aiming to hold in trust” the funds, to liberate them for debt service payment corresponding to debt securities under the Trust Agreement of 2005-2010.
 Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Argentinian acitivist on Human Rights and Self Determination of People. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1980 for his action against dictatorships in Latin America.
Translation: Sofía Ballack.