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Statement 04-2023


20 years ago, in 2003, it was very clear to many classic liberals that the failure of "neoliberalism" applied in the government (one example being the Washington consensus), would bring us enormous discredit in the public opinion, and would therefore strengthen the "Socialism of the XXI Century", with Hugo Chávez and his congeners. By a simple "law of the pendulum", the Sao Paulo Forum placed its candidates as presidents in our countries, and a "new progressive decade" began.

Liberals have been misrepresented for several generations. The "neoliberals" of the '90s came from social democratic or populist parties that never supported policies to privatize, deregulate or open markets to competition. Mercantilist businessmen are illiberal. And liberal economists never understood politics; neither the novelist Vargas Llosa, nor the "anarcho-capitalist" authors, nor the centrist or populist politicians who steal the label "liberal" for pure posturing.

In 2003 the liberal foundations, starting with the largest, the Atlas Network, which supports the others financially, were engaged in exclusively academic training programs. Young people who were new to liberalism were paid to write "papers" in the framework of the Austrian School of Economics. And nothing more.

They made a triple reduction of liberalism: liberalism was "economics", economics was the "Austrians", and the "Austrians" were Murray Rothbard and his "anarcho-capitalism". His Trainees were forbidden any intellectual or especially practical approach to politics, seen as something demonic. This rigid prohibition had a dissuasive effect on non-scholarship holders: "if you want a scholarship, no politics!" This line has been and continues to be followed to this day.

We demanded in 2003 that the Foundations review their aggressive anti-political attitude, because precisely what we needed in Latin America were political liberals, creating liberal parties in the political arena. All we demanded was liberal political training, just as left foundations and NGOs provide Marxist political training for their cadres and activists. But we ultimately lost that fight.

The second decade of this century, by the simple "law of the pendulum", saw the retreat of the left and the rise of a "new right", just as bad as that of the 90s: Governments that did not carry out the fundamental liberal reforms, and had been postponed at least since the 70s and 80s, mainly due to a lack of political education. And just as in the 1990s, we were once again didn't did what was promised, again. Making us look bad in the process.

Now in 2023, 20 years after the battle we lost against the liberal Foundations and Institutes, we are still without leaders or trained political cadres, and without parties to represent us fully, except for the efforts of the Five Reforms Project. And this is very clear in the case of Mr. Javier Milei, who once again makes us classical liberals look very bad, leading an anarchic troop of improvised people of dubious origins.

Regardless of the votes Milei gets, the trolls he has on social networks, or whether or not he becomes president, in any case, JAVIER MILEI DOES NOT REPRESENT US CLASSIC LIBERALS.

Nothing more.

October 13, 2023

President José Luis Tapia-Rocha, Perú

Myriam Ortiz, Peru

Jorge Chapas, Guatemala

Héctor Muñoz, Guatemala

Alberto Mansueti, Argentina

Erick García, México

Sonia Calderón, Costa Rica

Otman Domínguez, Colombia

Pablo Paiva, Uruguay

Gustavo Romero, Perú

Rodrigo Mora, Chile

Daniel Rocha, Bolivia

Manuel Alarcón, Chile

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