Thursday, December 14, 2006

Pinochet - 2

When you read the Pinochet obituaries, one thing that strikes you again and again is that he is the man who made 'disappear' a transitive verb.

Via Brad DeLong, we get this first hand account from someone who experienced the repressive regime in Chile in the 1970s. Let me just quote the last paragraph:

I hope dying hurt a whole lot, you rat-faced son of a bitch. I hope you suffered the tortures of the damned. I hope no one wiped your brow or comforted you while you suffered and died. I hope you died alone.

Via DeLong (and through Felix Salmon), we get a link to the London Economist's views on the dead dictator:

...[Pinochet] saw the “Chicago Boys”, a group of free-market economists, as a means to consolidate his personal dictatorship. The radical shrinking of Allende's bloated state was a way to avoid sharing patronage, and thus power, with the armed forces.

With Chileans cowed, the Chicago Boys could work as if in a laboratory, with no regard for social costs. They made mistakes: a fixed exchange rate and unregulated bank privatisations triggered a massive recession and financial collapse in 1982-83. More pragmatic policies and a renewal of growth followed. But it took the return of democracy in 1990, with its ability to bestow legitimacy, to create an investment-led boom and a large fall in poverty.


  1. Anonymous said...


    Such concern and sympathy for the victims of Pinochet whose worst days have come to an end. Touching indeed. Now how about a few words for the victims of the other tyrant of Latin America, who has ruled for nearly 50 years. The Indian MSM almost without exception goes into raptures over this man, his cigars, his jokes (yeah, right!). And his lackeys in the Indian media such as Siddharth Varadarajan or N. Ram just don't seem to get the idea of the pure evil that Fidel Castro represents.

    Read about one of Castro's victims here

    From Cuba by Yamilet de los Angeles Llanes Labrada
    Monday June 5, 2006


    Cuban phsycian and prisoner of conscience, Dr. Jose Luis Garcia Paneque, continues in the hospital of the Prison of ' Las Mangas ' in Bayamo, along with common prisoners, suffering from chronic bloody diarrhea and persistent ulcerative colitis as a consequence of the Syndrome of Intestinal Malabsorption that he has developed since his imprisonment in 2003...
    Dr. Garcia Paneque's four children are psychologically affected by their father's imprisonment and by the constant harassment they must sustain. Three times a week, groups of elderly Cubans cry out governmental slogans just two houses away from Garcia Paneque's home..."Jose Luis's case is very difficult and complicated; he is so sick" declared the wife of this Cuban prisoner of conscience.

    If you want to read more about the horrors being perpetrated on this island of horror check out some time.

    One expects the learned such as yourself to not merely express some concern here and some concern there. You are expected to call hypocrisy where you see it. And certainly the pages of The Hindu with its dorks bending and scraping before their portraits, busy singing the praises of Stalin, Mao, Castro, and Kim Jong Il is not the paper that shd be censuring Pinochet.

    The day irony meters melted down must surely be when Pinochet was arraigned in a court in Madrid, Spain, while Fidel Castro was being feted in Galicia.

    And Abi, spend a little more time reading about Salvador Allende who himself was no angel, who was well on his way to handing over the keys of state to his Cuban advisors. Chile is better off today for being rid of dictators both right and left.

  2. gaddeswarup said...

    I do not know Abi or any thing about his political affiliations but I feel some of the above comments are unfair. I assume that Abi has a profession and blogging is part time for him. He seems to post on things he finds interesting. Since he is not a professional journalist or politicaleconomist, I do not expect his posts to be very balanced or for him to do all my home work. If I have doubts or disgaree with him, I point out to him and so far he has not blocked any of my posts. I disagreed with him on faculty salaries and such and either some rapproachment occursor each maintains his views with due regard for others' views. What all I expect is that when I disagree with Abi and express my views politely, they will be published in his blog.