Thursday, December 09, 2004

Not Until You're Older

- "South America Creates Single Market,"
BBC News UK Ed. Thursday, 9 December, 2004, 03:13 GMT

More connectivity. More international agreement. Less focus on dealing with their individual lack of infrastructure. This is only good if South America can, as a whole, integrate the massive extralegal economies that exist in its individual states. Brazil is making good strides, and I'm sure that Argentina and Chile are trying as well. But, really, does anyone delude themselves into thinking that because Bolivia is managing its first peaceful (and legitimate) election and Colombia is begining to have great connectivity to the U.S. where extradition of drug lords is concerned that they'll be ready to join a union of states akin to the EU or US by the time that Argentina or Brazil will be? The loosening of trade restrictions in South America has far too many smuggling ramifications at present to be reasonable. Argentina, Brazil, and Chile are fighting to be part of the global economy. They won't be ready to serve as three pillars of a South American currency by 2020. One passport? Do you want Brazilians and Colombians to have equal access worldwide?

This is a giant step that the South American governments are taking, and they're taking it in their dad's oversized shoes. There's gonna be some slipage and maybe a fall or two. Is it overall bad? No. But it's definitely too soon to call this a success. This greater network that's being created won't be worth anything until the smaller networks beneath it are fully functional and able to go online. That said, it will be good for there to be a network structure there when these smaller networks are able to start the aggregation process, though I imagine it will be somewhat tired and defunct by then. Think "League of Nations" tired and defunct.

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