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erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Brazil over the past decade expanded its economy at a rate of 2.8%.  THis is why the people feel that Brazil is not moving forward.  Come on Brazil's government can only fight poverty and social injustice when there is a viable economy.  Previdencial Social has a deficit which eats up 60 billion dollars which comes out of the taxpayers of Brazil.  Then the tax system is one of the worst in Brazil which actually is regressive making the poor poorer while the rich pay very little since there are so many loopholes.  36,5% of the entire economy is taken in taxes by the federal, state, and municipal governments.
When the economy grows the poor and rich benefit.  Jobs are created for both segments of society.  The incomes of the poor and rich grow at the same rate which helps cut the number of people in poverty.  There economy cant expand in Brazil until some president in power is able to reform the system.  The pension system, Prevedencia Social only benefits the rich public servants who have a pension of 100% of their salaries.  This system is impossible to substain.  Then there are labor laws which prevent companies from hiring new workers.  CLT was made in the 30's when the economy was totally different than the curent economy.

The IMF did many things wrong.  But when it comes to Brazil, people like to complain about how the IMF stole 100 billion of reals that Brazil pays in debt.  Well it is actually Brazil's government that should be held responsible.  They are the ones who spend on projects that cost billion and that are used for corruption.  It is the previsious governments that spend causing inflation and erecting a high deficit.  By spending they caused too much inflation which causes the interest rates to go up in an attempt to control spiraling inflation.  Then the large deficits eat up the public savings which is needed towards investment. With more levels of investment Brazil expands production creating jobs which in the end cuts poverty.

Brazil needs to do two simple things, first cut down excessive spending like reforming Previdencial Social, one universal system for all retirees and reducing spending in other areas that Lula seems to be hinting at.  Then they need to cut taxers on savings in attempt to boost savings and decrease interest rates which stimulates the economy.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 12:47 pm on Feb. 9, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
"When the economy grows the poor and rich benefit"

*I'd like to make a distinction between economic growth and economic development here. They are not always the same thing...
*Did you ever in yout life happen to read stuff written by a Mexican guy called Rodolfo Stavenhagen. He has this piece out "Seven fallacies about Latin America". It's a really interesting argument on how the Western European and North American development model doesn't quite apply in Latin America... mostly because a phenomenon he calls internal imperialism (urban areas exploiting and feeding off the remote rural areas and favelas, and thus inhibiting their development). He also points out the role of the "first world" countries feeding off the developing countries like Brasil. It's a really good piece, and everyone interested in the development issues of Brasil should take a look at it. Stavenhagen points out a lot of ideas that didn't even occur to me at first; yet, he makes a lot of sense. ...and I think after reading that you will perhaps look at development from a bit different corner. ...
... My own belief is that if Brasil continues with the neoliberal policies that it's pursuing now, it will never get rid of the foreign burden on its back, and it will always be just an exporting economy/economic colony of North America.
And back to the original topic - as long as there are foreign companies draining the resources and profits from Brasil, I don't think the situation will get much better... I don't quite agree with the general opinion that economic growth should be the main goal; I'd be much happier to see a bit of tax reform, social security/assistance reform, a bit of land reform, and a bit more nationalist policies (as i described it above. perhaps also develop economic relations with other developing countries instead of the "first world)
*)also, i think instead of general growth of economy, Brasil should pay more attention on the backlands and the rural areas. Keep the brains from draining into the few main cities, and get the life going in those areas. Again...the more i think the more i realize how much easier everything would be if the government had a bit more control over the main pieces of brasilian industry...
anyway, i's starting to confuse even myself here. it has been a long day and i'm definitely not thinking very clearly (haha - perhaps tomoro i'll even disagree with myself). However, these are just some first ideas that came into my sleepy head; tell me if you agree with any of this, or if you don't, tell me why. I'm not claiming to be any kind of expert at all... In fact, eradicating poverty in Brasil sounds to me like a task equal to creating eternal world peace or something - not a very easy one to achieve..
ahh...but one is allowed to dream, right?


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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 5:49 pm on Feb. 9, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Hey Krista,
I am happy that you are the first one who replied to my new message board.  Ok well I will look into your book but I personally read Joseph Stiglitz, Globalization and its Discontents who was the president of the World Bank and that books makes a lot of sense to me.

Ok basically I feel that reforms like pension and tax need major reform and I pray Lula can convince the congress to pass this type of reform.  The pension system is horrible in Brazil because it provides a lot of money to a small group and it drains money away from the projects that make a difference in Brazil.  But neoliberal is not the wrong policy it is the correct policy.  

I think the biggest problem is that the govt has large deficits which drain the savings of people in Brazil.  The govt must borrow funds to finance large deficits.  If Lula covers these deficits he will stimulate growth because inflation will be lowered and interest rates can then fall.

Basically the reason why Brazil does not go forward is because of the crisis that occur.  When Brazil's economy slows down in economic growth, like from 2000 to 2001, Brazil experiences high rates of inflation.  THats the main problem with Brazil's current system, usually when an economy grows less it has less inflation, but in Brazil inflation grows strongly when the economy stops growing.  If inflation fell when the economy fell then the central bank could lower rates which would boost economic growth and development.  

I disagreew with Stavenhagen, because I point you to countries in Asia, who have more poverty than in Brazil but are making their economy grow more and reducing the level of population in poverty unlike the curent situation in Brazil.

The govt in Brazil needs to regulate industry better but it needs to keep its hand away from industry.  I think Brazil's govt is wrong to take over industry, private sector creates jobs and is better for the overall economy.  Take Banespa, it was controlled by the govt and it had 100,000 employees and a debt of tenths of billions of reais.  Politicians used this as an machine to gain votes and give jobs to people for favors and it pratically broke the bank.  Sao Paulo govt had to use 15 billion dollars to save the bank and finally it was privatize for 3.6 billion dollars.  

Now I dont believe in this explotation because it is benefial to both the USA and Brazil for the economy to grow.  Even the CUT, labor union is accepting Free trade of the Areas of the Americas as a future Brazil must join.  Brazil is still a very closed economy with an average 12% tarrif on imports.

So what I think went wrong with Brazil is that Cardoso privatize and opened the economy at a very fast pace.  Basically he liberalized the markets and sold state industry too fast and at a pace which I find was dictated by the IMF.  Now what I think should be done is the privatization but at a slower more gradual pace.  I think in the end an open economy is best but when you open the economy to fast Brazilian companies are unable to adapt to foreign competition for goods and these Brazilian companies are clearly unable to compete with international corporations because these international corporations have access to funds around the world and a better overall corporate structure.  When a Brazilan company cant compete against foreign companies these companies go bankrupt and then everey one is out of an job and we have social problems that currently exist in Brazil.  That is clearly what I believe occured in Brazil but I think Lula now understands the power of the market system and will apply a more social approach which I have no probelm with him doing!

Thank,

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 6:17 pm on Feb. 9, 2003 | IP
Ze


Junior Member
   
Sometimes I wonder what good is this economic growth. São Paulo already has more milionaries than any city in the world ( as an example, more than 500 familys own their helicopters in São Paulo, in NY only 12). I'snt it fabulous! Yet we still have mass poverty, and medium class wages here are les than the minimun on US.

Give me my share first, and then I'll concern myself with economical growth.

Total Posts: 93 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 6:48 pm on Feb. 9, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
erjbcdt -
if you want the stavenhagen piece, I have a copy of it in Adobe format; i can email it to you..or to anyone else who wants to look at it.

honestly, i quite like an idea of a free trade area, but knowing the business habits of USA and its corporations makes me sceptical about the FTAA. There are too many examples out there of US twisting the terms of such agreements to benefit its own businessmen while draining the partner country of its last resources. Some years ago, US made some kind of free trade deal with Jamaica (don't know the exact details); the result: right now, American farmers are sending their heavily subsidised products to Jamaica killing the last business opportunities for Jamaican farmers. So what was the point for that deal for Jamaicans? They were also promised free access to american market; however, Jamaican farmers can not compete in American markets... I am just afraid that the FTAA will have the same effect in Brasil... American companies will come in, take the last bits of market and leave Brasilians with nothing (especially the farmers, because the American ones receive so many subsidies that they can afford to sell at a much cheaper price. however, what good will cheaper products do, if brasilian farmers at the same time lose their last markets?). US also has some kind of a deal with Mexico (again, dunno the exact details). What's happening there is that as US factories have this easy access to Mexico, a giant amount of Mexicans are now working for american companies, and all the profit they produce is shifted out of the country very quickly. I'd rather that Brasil make no deal with US at all...US isn't a very altruistic country, it looks for its own good first, and I don't think Brasil can compete with that at the moment.

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 8:41 pm on Feb. 9, 2003 | IP
ELEGANTGENT



Junior Member
   
krista, i would appreciate to have a copy of the document. my email address is elegantgent@netzero.net
also i must agree with your opinion of brazil staying the heck away from american crooks. many countries have been taken advantage of and ripped.
tia

Total Posts: 53 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 10:16 am on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
Sick



Newbie
   
Krista, I would like to read it too. I need a good laugh.

ro695@21stcentury.net

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I have the best hair on this website.

Total Posts: 27 | Joined Dec. 2002 | Posted on: 10:37 am on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
fernandobn


Junior Member
   
I will appreciate to get a copy too

fernandobn@aol.com

Thanks

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Fernando B.

Total Posts: 55 | Joined Dec. 2002 | Posted on: 12:58 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Krista,

I want to read about the paper with Rodolf but I am busy with a lot of college work.  Well my email is smbb09@hotmail.com.. if you like to send it to me you may I just wont be able to read it for some time

As far as I read Jamaica does not have a free trade agreement with USA.  It is a complicated economic situation both countries.  There are many in the USA who dont want free trade with Brazil because the farmers in Florida will lose with competition from Brazil.  So Lula has to fight to reduce subsidies to farmers in the USA.

When you attack the USA you should also attack the European Union because they have extremely high subsidies also and there corporations do the same thing US corporations do.  They are all the same.  Brazil is close to signing a free trade agreement with them, and I hope Brazil signs a free trade agreement with EU before the USA.  But by signing a free trade agreement exports especially for Brazil grow giving Brazil a export base to reduce the current account balance.  Exporting products helps attract dollars to the country which keeps the currency strong and checks the growth inflation.

You said USA corporations make profits in Mexico, sure yes they do I wont disagree with that, but so what? they create jobs for Mexicans, they help attract dollars for the Mexican economy.  Its economy has flourished recently.  When the Mexican economy slowed down with the US economic slow down, Mexican inflation rates fell and its central bank was able to reduce rates helping spur economic growth.  Again I contend that when Brazil's economy slowed down its inflation somehow picks up so strongly, because the govt controls a lot of prices and not the market.

So well I hope Lula fights for economic rights of Brazil and he should rush into Free trade with the Americans but if anyone wants to call the americans crooks I want to here your proof and substain it with facts?

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 1:03 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
What does anyone think of FHC?  What did you think he did well and what did you think he did wrong?

What are the areas of Brazilian society that you would say the govt needs to pay more attention too? I think its the judicial system, but I want to hear what everyone has to say?

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 1:09 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Ze,
you said: Give me my share first, and then I'll concern myself with economical growth.

Well you see there is a problem with that.  Every year you get a smaller and smaller share because inflation is always growing especially in Brazil.  So to counter the shrinking size of your share of the pie you must have an economy that is growing.  Growth comes from production and if you produce more you need more jobs.  Thus increasing productoin comes from increase in investment and that is something Brazil seems to lack.

So you cant argue that you want a fair share of the pie, because that in itself would go against economic logic. IT is impossible to give everyone a fair share of the pie because the guy who is strong, smart and works hard at school will win more of the economic share than a guy who is rich but decides to be lazy and not work, and not give a shit about life...

Well thats my opinion but you argue all you want with me...

Erjbcdt

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 1:22 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
mmm... i agree with you, erjbcdt, that EU is not much better than US. the only reason i left EU out of it was that I had no idea Brasil was making a free trade agreement with them. Yes, European farmers also get quite heavy subsidies, and I think it would not be healthy for Brasil to compete with that. At most, I could agree with Brasil making somewhat restricted free trade agreements with US and EU, which would apply to only certain kinds of goods...
Mmm...yes, it is possible that Jamaica has no free trade agreement with US. I'm not really sure what kind is that one, but there's a whole movie on this issue, and it appears to be quite nasty. this unfair agreement, i mean.
Don't you agree that in the long run Mexico would be much better off if the companies providing jobs there would belong to Mexicans?
See, my idea is the following:
-One of Brasil's biggest problems is that the rural areas are almost dead, nothing much going on in there. It would help a lot if the people in those areas could open up their own little businesses.. you know, producing stuff or services on a small scale, and surviving on that (trust me, it doesn't seem very feasible for someone used to the way US works, but for a long time this kind of system existed in Estonia...which is why I believe in it that much). Right now this is not very easy to accomplish, because those small scale producers in Brasilian backlands can in no way compete with big American corporations. So I figure that while restricting foreign access to Brasilian market would keep the dollars out, it would also keep the reais in. I believe one of the biggest tasks for Lula's government should be encouraging the development of small local businesses in the rural areas. In addition to keeping the R$ in Brasil, it would also enormously help in terms of redistributing the money to the poor. Isn't the main problem in the rural areas right now that there are no jobs available? So perhaps these people can create their own jobs... I've seen it - a little soda company, a local bakery, a local butchery, a local fabric factory, a local furniture maker - all really small businesses, but making nice profit, because the Coca Cola Company or some other giant competitor isn't there... (ahh...call  me a horrible person or whatever, but the Soviet Union had some good things in it)
Just a little discalimer here - i do not think that Brasil should completely close its economy. No, i don't want Brasil to commit suicide. but i also think it shouldn't be as open as it's going to be... Big companies bringing in jobs may look good at first, but imho, they're not giving back enough (well, obviously they're trying to get more than they give, they should, that's business). One of the nastiest points about FTAA is that it will allow the big corporations affect the governemts' policies, completely messing up Brasil's environment, health system, human rights whatever... I wouldn't like to see that happen just for the sake of a few more $$.

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 2:26 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
Ze


Junior Member
   
Aren't you changing the roles? The guy who is rich and lazy getting less of a share than the "ambitious worker"? That only happens when you have social mobility, something we lack seriously.

So far, the new millenium has changed this "more production, more jobs" and I expect you to know why I'm skeptical about this.

About FHC, he may have done a few things right, but I cannot forgive him for raising our debt from huge 50 billions, to nightmarish 1 trillion dolars, selling some huge estatals for almost nothing, and being such a snobish ## that earned him the nick of "Príncipe das Américas".


... he entered on a flight to Paris just as he lost his trone.

Total Posts: 93 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 6:26 pm on Feb. 10, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Well let me first say that the rich for the most part are not lazy people.  Now a days it is hard to become rich if you are lazy.  I am not saying that if you are poor you are lazy, it is just that the poor tend to have less education and so less opportunity is open for them.  

Well you can ask any economist, the best method to boost employment is to produce more.  Comapanies need to borrow from the funds we save in the banks, this is how the economic structure works, so if you are against production in eccence you are against creating jobs for people.

No I dont understand why you are skeptical?

The debt of FHC is due not to his fault but to crisis he had no control in handling.  I agree that with the fact that he sold Brazil's assets in too short of a time period it is better for the overall country to open a country gradually, but opening a country to the international market is the best for the country in the future.  It the end result a country desires more openness to the world.
The debt skyrocketed because inflation continues to be  a problem that the central bank has to worry about.  As prices rise the bank raises rates to stop inflation but inflation rises because the govt dictates price increases.  As the interest rates rise the debt in Brazil rises because 80% of the debt is locked to local interest rates or local currency value.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 6:19 pm on Feb. 11, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
I belief that Brazil is a moment in time where they have to move forward in terms of reforms and move closer to a globalized world.  Staying a closed economy and attempting to raise an efficient economy will not come by until a new environment of pro-business, giving credit to small businesses which Brazil has more than any nation other than the USA.  And I think Lula has seen the meaninful sight of the market system and will pursue with giving the Central Bank freedom, which will make the monetary policy more transparent.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 4:02 pm on Feb. 12, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
"giving credit to small businesses" ...yes, yes, YES!!! I so agree. small businesses are what will bring brasilian backlands back to life (because once many of them used to be alive).
HOWEVER, moving "closer to a globalized world" doesn't seem to go with that... I can't see any way for some foreign mass-production brand-name clothing company and a local Brazilian small-scale producer to exist together. Or any international corporation... they will swallow the small businesses, because usually producing on the small scale is much more expensive (and obviously the consumer goes for the cheaper option). Opening up a bit is good, but opening up too much is dangerous-dangerous...
Did any of you ever get into this Wal-Mart argument with your friends? The one about the Wal-Mart super-chainstore going to small American towns, offering a cheap mass product and driving all the local small business owners out of market. Trust me, it's true. For two years I lived in this small town in the middle of a New Mexican desert. It used to be a quite nice place, people lived nicely, each of them doing their own little things... About a year after Wal-Mart moved in, most of the little local stores went out of business. The only one that stayed was Salvation Army. I have this scary feeling that letting the big corporations into Brasil will do the same to Brasilian economy - the giants will just drive all the small people out of the market and Brasilians will just end up serving cheap labor for the economies of other countries.

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 7:19 pm on Feb. 12, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Now I understand why Lula does not have a problem with the World Bank    

World Bank: Unions Can Improve Economies




WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A country's economy may fare better if a large number of its workers belong to trade unions, the World Bank (news - web sites) said in a study that marked a departure from the institution's traditional frosty approach to organized labor.

The report, released on Wednesday, found that high unionization rates can lead to lower unemployment and inflation rates, higher productivity and faster adjustment to economic shocks.


"The bank in the past has perhaps been hostile to trade unions, and the thing with this book is that it wants to have a very open and nuanced approach, different from the past," Robert Holzmann, the bank's director of social protection, told Reuters. "So no blank check to trade unions but a major offer to work with them because they're crucial."


The report said union members in rich and poor countries alike get significantly higher average wages than workers who are not affiliated with a trade union.


In the United States, wages can be 15 percent higher for union members while in other industrialized countries, they are between 5 and 10 percent higher. The benefits of union membership can vary in middle-income and developing countries.


The study also found that union participation can reduce wage gaps between skilled and unskilled workers and also between men and women.


UNIONS CAN STILL BE BAD


But unions can also create problems if they are not open and transparent.


"Trade unions can be important agents of change if it is done in a good manner," said Holzmann. "It does not mean they cannot have detrimental effects if the opposite takes place."


Holzmann commissioned the study on "Unions and Collective Bargaining: Economic Effects in a Global Environment" to provide policymakers, unions and employers in developing countries with data on the impact of unions on the economy.


The rapid growth of international trade has stimulated an interest in different labor standards around the world.


There is growing concern that countries that adopt lower labor standards will have unfair advantages in producing internationally traded goods than those with higher standards.


Also, new technology allows jobs to be directly subcontracted to workers in low-standard countries.



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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 9:19 am on Feb. 13, 2003 | IP
Jeromy


Junior Member
   
To Krista,

I absolutely agree with you. Major multi-national corporations crowd out local businesses through superior financing, high powered marketing, monopoly patents, and greater managerial resources.  In many poor countries over half the manufacturing assets are owned are controlled by foreign companies.  
A major key to uplifting a people out of poverty would be to put restrictions and heavy taxes on those corporations and give support to small local businesses.


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Peace and Justice for all

Total Posts: 55 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 8:54 pm on Feb. 14, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
yes, i still think that.
however, we must not forget that restricting the multinational giants too much is dangerous as well. I believe it was Goulart who put out this kind of law - he restricted the foreign companies' ability to take profits out of Brasil to about 10% or so... Sounds nice at first, right? Sounds like $$ is going to stay in Brasil... But no. As a result Brasil fell into economically hard times, because suddenly foreign investors started losing interest in Brasil.
The sad truth is that Brasil has already become so dependent on its foreign investors that it can't survive on its own. Perhaps the happy state of economic independence is even achievable, but first Brasil would have to face an inevitable economic crash and build up from that. Perhaps Goulart wasn't even that stupid; perhaps he just wasn't determined enough to finish what he started...he got the foreign companies out, but as the economy started crashing, he didn't really promote national economy, but canceled his restriction instead (or was that the military already? i don't remember the exact details...). But being realistic - this is definitely not going to happen again. (haha - if Lula even tried to do anything like that, Brasilian economy would fry and he'd be assassinated).
Perhaps Brasil could try to match up and create partnerships with other developing countries instead of the 'first world'? That could also be a quite interesting thing to see...

What do you people think? I actually hate economics, so I'll be happy to hear from someone who knows the topic a bit more..

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 10:03 pm on Feb. 14, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
WHY DO YOU THINK BRAZIL IS SOO DEPENDENT ON FOREING INVESTMENT? IT HAS EVERYTHING TO DO WITH THE OLD GOVT SYSTEMS THAT DONT WORK

tHE PENSION SYSTEM IS THE BIGGEST MONEY SUCKER!
IT GIVES LUSH PAYMENTS TO AN ELITE SET OF WORKERS AND THEY DONT PAY ANY TAXES ON IT, BUT NO ONE HAS THE COURAGE TO FIGHT FOR ONE UNIFIED SYSTEM WHICH ALL BRAZILIANS WOULD HAVE TO FOLLOW WITH A CELING PLACED AT 1,520 REAIS.  THIS IS FAIR IN MY OPINON AND I BELIEVE WITHOUT THIS MAJOR REFORM BRAZIL WILL CONTINUE TO DEPEND ON FOREIGN INVESTMENT TO FINANCE ITS GROWING DEFIICIT.  THE DEFICIT ALSO HAS A CROWDIN OUT EFFECT WHICH EATS AWAY SAVINGS THAT TURN INTO INVESTMENT AND INSTEAD THE SAVINGS IS USED TO GIVE FUNDS FOR THE GOVT TO FINANCE ITS DEBT!

tAXES ARE THE WORST ISSUE THAT HAPPENS IN BRAZIL.  INDUSTRIES AND SMALL BUSINESS CANT COMPETE BRAZIL THERE IS NO CREDIT.  TAXES DO NOT INCOURAGE INVESTMENTS TOWARDS PRODUCTION THAT CREATE JOBS AND INCREASE INCOME FOR ALL WHO ARE IN THE WORK FORCE.



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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 12:02 am on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
erjbcdt-

hey, turn off the allcaps; it's hard to read and it makes me feel that you're screaming at me..

don't you see...tax reform does not equal foreign investment reform (unless all foreign investment be heavily taxed). I don't know Brasilian tax law, but perhaps you're right, perhaps the tax system really is bad and needs to change. I have not argued against that at all.
At the same time, opening the economy for excessive foreign investment is still dangerous. The more production units the Brasilians sell to the foreigners, the more they will then depend on those foreigners. It can soooo easily happen that one day a big corporation will influence Brasilian politics just because it has so much power in Brasilian economy. (an example here - it was a canadian Naomi Klein who wrote in her book "No Logo" about how Shell bribed and threatened Nigerian government in order to get better drilling rights and all kinds of advantages in Nigeria...even though the drilling was happening where some people's villages were. a lot got polluted, many got killed, but once Shell was let in, it had enough power within the country that it could do such things. Now, I don't think exactly the same scenario will happen in Brasil. But perhaps some day a big corporation will influence Brasilian government to lower the corporate tax, because otherwise the corporations owning most of Brasil's economy will flunk it...)

But coming away from these black scenarios, I think Brasil could pick itself up if it encouraged it's own economy instead of bringing in other people's ecnomies. No, it doesn't have to be full government control over everything; more like, government juss making sure that a brasilian business has an advantage before a foreign business.
Now, if World Bank supported economic nationalism instead of "let's-sell-our-economy-to-the-rich-countries", I'd be happy..
(they're gathering their points with fome zero already. i must really look into what's their role in it)
---

ps: i think the very basic problem here is actually that Brasil is trying to compare itself to US too much. Brasil too wants a PC and a DVD-player and a car in every family right after hunger is gone... but why? is it just me who doesn't understand the need for another consumer society? If Brasil decided to jeep its economy for itself, yes, it probably wouldn't fly as high as the first world... but why should it? What makes a good life?? Really, tell me. I want to know where does everyone want to see Brasil. Where US is? or somewhere else?

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 8:40 am on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
I am sorry for caplocks it is just when I type so much sometimes I hit the button caps lock button and I dont even notice because it was like 2:50am or 3:30 that was when I went to sleep last night.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 9:19 am on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
it's all cool. i guess i'm just becoming a bit paranoid, 'cause i'm worried about the general tone of some people on this forum. i think we all know some...

...just looked thru the list of the latest topics discussed in the forum/general:
-coupe
-war
-economic problems
-world war
-taxes
-genocide
-hunger
-inequality
The sad undertone of all these topics made me think that perhaps we all need a break. So, again, completely out of topic, I am adding another link here for everyone who gets tired of politics and arguing and stuff.
This is a gallery of a street artist I met in Boston. He has worked all over the world, and the relevant part here is that Brazil is one of his favorites. He has been to Sao Paulo quite a few times, and those of you who live there now, can perhaps recognize some of his works on the street and buildings...
http://www.theartwheredreamscometrue.com

I wish everyone a happy day!!
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ps: I'm not expecting replies to this off-the-topic comment. I just hope some of you will go check it out, look at the photos, relax, and then come back to comment on the relevant issues...

(Edited by krista at 2:27 pm on Feb. 15, 2003)

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 11:34 am on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
Jeromy


Junior Member
   
To Krista, cool website!
To Erjbct. I commend you for respecting those who you disagree with. I hate it when people began throwing personal insults out during a debate because they disagree with someone.
I still want to address your comments on the World Bank and the Brazilian economy. I also want to address Krista's response to my last post on this subject. I just got in from working, I was up all night, I stink, I'm tired, plus I did an emotionally draining post on the war on Iraq. I want to clean up and rest and later tonight address these points.


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Peace and Justice for all

Total Posts: 55 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 2:49 pm on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Hey thank you for sending that art exhibit website it helps me relax.  Thank you Krista, now I need to clarify my economic and political ideas:

I believe that FHC error comes from radically opening the country to the outside, and globalizing the economy in four years when it should have been done in a gradual process like Poland, Malaysia and China have done.  The economy and nation does not function well under a closed state controlled society that Brazil had since the 1930's.  The state companies do have funding to invest in production and generate jobs, and state companies dont need to be efficient since the company has no competition from anyone.  Who gets hurt by this policy?  the Brazilian consumers who have to pay higher prices for products that other companies can produce cheaply.

I stand to agree with Joseph Stiglitz main thesis in the book Globalization and its Discontents, that third world nations need to better defend their interest, like Lula is certainly doing.  I agree that a small tax on investors who speculate in local currencies should exist.  It is still allowing capital to flow freely but it is going to curb rampand speculation that seems to occur in Brazil every year.
IMF has made several mistakes using the case with Ethopia in 1998.  The mainstream idea of globalization is changing and that has to do with the left constant attack that a better world is possible.  EVEN GEORGE SOROS, A SPECULATOR, BELIEVES THAT COMPLETE FREE MARKET REFORMS  HURTS THIRD WORLD NATIONS AND THAT GLOBALIZATION NEEDS TO HAVE NEW RULES THAT FAVOR COUNTRIES THAT ARE DEVELOPING BY LOWERING FARM SUBSIDIES! I attach an article on BBC news agency about George Soros  he basically says that market fundamentalism is wrong because markets to dont correct themselves but need state intervention to correct:  http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/2072100.stm  

Ok well I hope I clarfied my ideas, a little.  I did not mean to put caps lock when i spoke about Soros I just wanted to emphasize that point, thats all.  Hope to hear from you all soon!

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 9:14 pm on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
Ze


Junior Member
   
I have this feeling telling me that ending farm subsidies still won't make globalization much better than puncturing my lung.

There is to much that can be lost with globalization, and the gains have to much glamour to it that my skepticism fails to see any consistence.

Total Posts: 93 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 11:30 pm on Feb. 15, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
ok, read the article. oh yes, market fundamentalism really sounds like a crappy thing (ah, i didn't know there was such a theory...learning new things every day )

About the governemnt ownership of businesses... I didn't mean there needs to be monopoly in everything (well...in some industries, like public transportation perhaps, i think there should be...); i'm more thinking of just keeping the businesses in the hands of brasilians, and giving the government some form of control over what happens in the economy. What happened a lot in Eastern Europe after the collapse of Soviet Union was that everything got privatized and sold to the foreigners... That included media, banking system, electricity production, water companies, phone system...police force has partially been replaced with private security companies, in addition to lots of private doctors and hospitals we have private ambulance. I don't find that right. I don't think Brasil should keep completely everything to itself, but I hope that the same mistakes won't be repeated there. Am I making any sense? (...it's 4:30 am here...I don't feel too alert right now...)
i'm too lazy to go back and check...was it here where i was talking of the small local businesses? Well, for everyone else who is also too lazy, lemme repeat: What if we keep out big multinational corporations and put the main efforts into promoting lots of small businesses instead?
I mean, what happened to the trade of the shoemaker? Do these people still exist in Brasil? In US, when your shoes break, you buy new ones. In Estonia, not very often anymore, but still, you go to the shoemaker and have them fixed. And people can still make their living like that - you learn a trade, you put up your local thing, and you live.

I think, I'm too sleepy to continue...horrible...I'll be back later when I wake up (and I'll probably disagree mith myself a lot then..haha...I'm just exploring my sleepy brain here)

boa noite, you all!!


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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 1:40 am on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
Jeromy


Junior Member
   
Let first start out by pointing out the obvious. The problem that causes poverty in Brazil as well as in the rest of Latin America is what I call the imperial system.
Brazil is one of the richest countries in natural resources in the world, but it's population is one of the poorest.
It is pretty simple to understand why this is. The riches of the country are going out of the country and not to the benefit of the people of the country. Except to a very small percentage, the top 1 percent who control 53 percent of the wealth of the country.
These 1 percent get rich many times by selling the land, the labor, and the resources of the country off to foreign corporations.
This begun when the Portuguese came to Brazil. The riches of the country were sent out of Brazil to the empires of Portugal and Great Britain. Of course a small percentage of a European elite who took residence in Brazil got rich from this, and maintained power over the country. The European powers would give military support to these elites to maintain this system. This was the colonial system.
What we have today is a neo-colonial system. No one claims direct position of Brazil, but the imperialist system remains the same. The empires have changed, now it is the United States and it's European and Japan satellites.
The World Bank, IMF, NAFTA, FTAA, as well as the CIA, U.S. military, and since most of the Latin American military is trained and supplied by the U.S., it as well are instruments to maintain this system.
This system creates savage inequalities. Until that system is crushed, you will still have incredible poverty. This system can't be reformed. You can't reform imperialism. It is a system of injustice.          
I absolutely agree with Ze when he said: It is a fact, that neoliberalism concentrates the power in the hands of a few, that globalization destroys small economies. It should be understood that neoliberalism and neo-colonism are virtually the same. As Henry Kissinger said “globalization is really another name for the dominate role of the United States.”
Consider this quote by Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano, in his book We Say No (pg.278)

"For us capitalism is not a dream to be pursued, but a nightmare come true.  Our challenge lies not in privatizing the state but it deprivatizing it.  Our states have been brought up at bargain prices by the owners of the land, the banks, and everything else.  And for us, the market is nothing more than a pirate ship-the greatest it’s freedom, the worse it’s behavior.  The local market and the world market.  The world market robs us with both hands.  The commercial hands keeps buying from us ever cheaper  and selling to us every dearer.  The financial hand, which lends us our own money, keep paying us less and charging us more.
We live in a region of European prices and African wages, where capitalism acts like a the kind man who says ‘I’m so fond of poor people that I never think there are enough of them."
By the way this is great book on this subject, as well his book Open Veins of Latin America.
I will talk more about the negative results of privatization, the free markets role in poverty in Brazil as well as Latin America. This is an extremely interesting subject which I have much to say and much to learn.



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Peace and Justice for all

Total Posts: 55 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 1:49 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Ok now I understand your problems, but it is not helpful to just say capitalism is bad, if you hate it so much and it causes poverty why dont you tell me what system you prefer?  Do you prefer Brazil has a closed economy, does not listen to the markets, and has inflation rates of 3,000% a year?  Why dont you go ask the poor how many tv's they could buy when inflation was 3,000% a year?  Look the poor gained because when prices are controlled there money is all of a sudden worth more.

You guys are wrong about imperialism, that was a term European nations used to dominate third world nations.  THis roughly occured around the 1860-1900, when Brazil was a nation and becoming an republic.

Now if capitalism is so bad, how did the Japanese, CHinese, come to have powerful economies?  They followed capitalism, and how did Singapore a tiny little country become the export king of the world.  
How did Ireland,a small poor economy just 15 years ago, become the second leading export of IT equipment and have an unemployment rate of less than 4%.  How did it get rid of slums that existed in Dublin?  Well the economy for nearly 10 years expanded at a rate of atleast 7% a year, so why cant it happen to Brazil?  Explain to me why capitalism can work in many other nations, some one talked about eastern europe, why dont you look at Poland's successful economy, or maybe Slovenia economy which was recently said to be going too strong to want to joing the European Union..
Explain to me why Spain since the 80's has become a emerging first world nation. Economic growth has outpaced population growth which provides higher income levels of growth.

In my next post I will Explain why BRazil lives with such inequality, it is quite simile to understand.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 3:31 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Ok now I understand your problems, but it is not helpful to just say capitalism is bad, if you hate it so much and it causes poverty why dont you tell me what system you prefer?  Do you prefer Brazil has a closed economy, does not listen to the markets, and has inflation rates of 3,000% a year?  Why dont you go ask the poor how many tv's they could buy when inflation was 3,000% a year?  Look the poor gained because when prices are controlled there money is all of a sudden worth more.

You guys are wrong about imperialism, that was a term European nations used to dominate third world nations.  THis roughly occured around the 1860-1900, when Brazil was a nation and becoming an republic.

Now if capitalism is so bad, how did the Japanese, CHinese, come to have powerful economies?  They followed capitalism, and how did Singapore a tiny little country become the export king of the world.  
How did Ireland,a small poor economy just 15 years ago, become the second leading export of IT equipment and have an unemployment rate of less than 4%.  How did it get rid of slums that existed in Dublin?  Well the economy for nearly 10 years expanded at a rate of atleast 7% a year, so why cant it happen to Brazil?  Explain to me why capitalism can work in many other nations, some one talked about eastern europe, why dont you look at Poland's successful economy, or maybe Slovenia economy which was recently said to be going too strong to want to joing the European Union..
Explain to me why Spain since the 80's has become a emerging first world nation. Economic growth has outpaced population growth which provides higher income levels of growth.

In my next post I will Explain why Brazil lives with such inequality, it is quite simple to understand.

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 3:32 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
i'm not an expert at all the examples you gave, but Ireland, for one, got out of the black hole because of the insane amounts of money that European Union pumped into it. What makes me worried in Brasil's case is that, IMF isn't giving Brasil this kind of aid, but loans... Also, Ireland doesn't serve as a pool of cheap labor for the rich countries; again, my concern is that if Brasil doesn't act carefully, it may just forever be a pool of cheap labor for the companies from rich countries.

I personally don't see much problem with moderate capitalism. but I must say that because of the insane inequality that's present in Brasil, too extreme capitalism would just kill everything. People have to be helped out before they can go on with their lives in a normal way. Ok - i will be a leftie this time (i don't usually like to classify myself) - but i really believe that people should pay quite a bit of tax, and from that tax health care, public transportation, social security and education should be funded. That would bring down the ugliest sides of inequality and let the people start concerning about other things...

but coming back to imperialism, i believe that it is still present, just in a different form than 100 years ago. Yes, the governments of other countries don't want to be imperialists, they only want what's the best for their own economies. The best thing for their own economies would be to use the resources and cheap labor of other countries while scoring the profits for themselves. I may sound a bit paranoid, but I really don't have any faith in good intentions or the compassion of big corporations. Even when they do some into the country and create more jobs and relieve the burden on the poorest a bit...what happens at the same time is that most of them pollute the country so bad that it will create giant extra costs for the government (of course the corporations won't pay for their own pollution or destruction), the standard of living everywhere else will also rise..rise much faster and leave the poor even farther behind. My ideal would be letting the poor catch up a bit thru various  social reforms... Like all those i named above.. we still have the remains of that in Estonia: free education at all levels (and the education is quite good), free health care up to a certain level (beauty operations and some very big operations one has to pay for, but basic help is all free or heavily subsidised), public transport is funded by the state, thus really cheap; the only prob;em is the pension system (starting to fall apart) - but in total, even if one is dirt poor, they can help themselves. As far as I know, the situation in Brasil isn't quite that... And I think once the social situation is better, the economy will catch up.
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ps: high inflation rates don't necessarily come from closed economy. Also, Brasil doesn't have to close up completely; I'd love to see some cooperaton with other developing countries...lotsa trade and good stuff. I just want the supercorporations and the first world loan sharks out..



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Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 4:13 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
Sick



Newbie
   
If you want an interesting book about how rapid free markets reforms and democratization can actually cause more harm than good read Amy Chua's 'World on Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability'

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I have the best hair on this website.

Total Posts: 27 | Joined Dec. 2002 | Posted on: 10:16 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
Jeromy


Junior Member
   
Yeah...that is a good book.

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Peace and Justice for all

Total Posts: 55 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 10:26 pm on Feb. 16, 2003 | IP
Jeromy


Junior Member
   
To Krista,
I agree. There are quite a few things that you mentioned would help erase poverty.

Ways to remove poverty. Increae tariffs, Increase taxes, especially on the rich. Use that to provide health care, education all the way up to the university level, public transportation, social security, and some housing.
De-privatize water, and energy, so that even those who could not afford these will be able to have access to them. I don't mind some things being privatized. But corporations care only about making profits, and they will charge whatever they can profit from, and do just about anything to accomplish this. Thus causing those who cannot afford to go without basic necessities.
This would also provide more jobs. Plus lessen damage done to the environment.
Also providing support to small local businesses.
Another thing that would help is that the government would insure a livable wage to be paid to all employees, or that the worker is given a fair share of the wealth he/she produces. Encourage and support labor unions.
I am not against capitalism if it is put in it's proper place. The essence of capitalism is making capital and producing wealth which is not bad. It is amoral.
What I am against is state capitalism. Which is when a government's purpose is to protect the capital of the wealthy and to assist them to acquire more. This is immoral because it serves human greed and not human need. It protects the interest of the few at expense of the many.
Lester Thurow said of state capitalism:
"Democracy and capitalism have very different beliefs about the proper distribution of power. One believes in a completely equal distribution of political power, ‘one man, one vote’, while the other believes that it is the duty of the economically fit to drive the unfit out of business and into economic extinction. 'Survival of the fittest' and inequalities in purchasing power is what capitalist efficiency is all about. Individuals and firms become efficient to be rich. To put it in its starkest form, capitalism is perfectly compatible with slavery. The American South had such a system for more than two centuries. Democracy is not comparable with slavery."
John Maynard Keynes said:
“Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone “
Aristotle said that "Democracy cannot exist with inequality."
State Capitalism creates savage inequalities.
It is been said that in the 80's capitalism triumph over communism, and in the 90's it triumph over democracy (Actually in many places it triumph over democracy before the 90's).
What I support is what in Europe is called the Third Way. Which is occurring in Canada, Europe, and other places around the world. It is social democracy. It allows the producing of capital, while the governments focus on the needs of their people.




Total Posts: 55 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 4:28 am on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
'bout water rand energy and stuff... It's just one of those basic rules that you can't put management of public goods into private hands. Public goods are not supposed to create profit; thus, giving them to private hands would be a really weird contradiction...
everything else...let them privatize if they want. If well done, that will be a good thing. The state doesn't need it's own paper industry and things like that... But the production of essential goods should be controlled by the government.
Anybody disagree? I wouldn't mind hearing different opinions, provided that they come with a good explanation.


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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 11:46 am on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Hey Krista, and everyone else I have a good explanation why your ideas dont work out that well.
I will admit that your ideas on education make a lot of sense and personally I would agree with you purposals on free education for all.
But when it comes to higher taxes to pay for free health care then we have a problem.  Brazil, in the 1960's had a national health care service and it was horrible.  My mom told me about it and it really does not work. There is way too much bereaucracy which hurts the patients because it takes several months to get the treatment that is sometimes needed urgently.  Then there is the level of corruption that will occur in the system.  When there exists a bereacucracy corruption is extremely prevelent.  Why should the rich pay higher taxes when you are creating a health care system that doesn't provide good quality health care.  I think again there needs to be improvement in public hospitals that covers anyone who enters and not a national health care services which sacrifices quality.  
Second have you guys ever estimated the cost to the state to create free education, free healthcare, more taxes to save the environment.  They cost reach around 50, to possibly 80 billion dollars.  WOw, compared to Brazil's 36,5% of the GDP in taxes after all your plans go through it might well reach 80% of the GDP

Did you know that with 36,5% of the GDP taken in taxes in Brazil, only Germany and Sweden pays more in terms of the economy to the governments.  So why do the social services in Brazil still suffer from lack of funding? Well the administration of money is horrible, a lack of countability, not too much transperency, and high level of accumulated debt.

Why does Brazil pay first world taxe rates and get third world social services?  There is an administration issue that needs to be reformed before social services and benefit the mass population.  Brazilians need less taxes and more economic growth.

Now reducing taxes and becoming efficient with the state social service to benefit the poor who need it is most important.  Do you know that state funding goes to private hospitals in Brazil.  But they are required to take in a small % of people from the public.  This in my opinon makes little sense.  

Why should the rich who have worked hard be punished with higher taxes. I think taxes in Brazil need to be more progressive where the rich need to pay more of a share of their income than the poor because that is the best way to redistribute income in a common sense fashion.

Hope to hear the group's response....soon

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 3:22 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Jeromy how would increased taxes on the rich, and higher tariffs help eliminate poverty? No way that was the system that existed in Brazil and it led to massive unemployment, with high inflation rates reaching a 1,000% a year(unlike today in Brazil).  Plus today Brazil has Embaer, fourth largest aviation company in the world, based in my hometown.  Then we have Petrobras leading oil company in underwater oil drilling. Then you have CVRD is the largest iron ore company in the world.  
Now read my previous post and tell me where I am wrong?

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 3:38 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
Now I will keep to my promise and explain to everyone my opinion of why Brazil has a sever inequality problem.  It is a tough issue to tackle so I hope no one gets mad at me:

It is quite simple factual occurance in Brazilian History:

Ok, back in 1950 to 1970, Brazil expanded its economy by receiving hundred of billion of dollars from Institutions and the US government to spend on infrastructure.  Roads, transportation and invesment in industries occured throughout Brazil.  BUt where in specific did these investments occur?  In the states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janiero, and a little in Belo Horizonte, the states of the South East.  The state of Sao Paulo alone has 40% of the GDP of Brazil.  Now Sao Paulo and Rio had special political influence which helped it continue the large scale investments made by the federal governmetn during this 20 year period.  No what happened throughout the rest of Brazil?  In the Northeast, the people who were farmers, hear the news that jobs in factories where vacant in Sao Paulo.  Well then these people the Northeast some how traveled to Sao Paulo and Rio and tried to find jobs in the factories that the heard were free.  When these people got there, they found out that jobs in Sao Paulo and Rio did not exist, so they believed that it would be better to stay there in case these jobs began to open up.  Now there had almost no money so they built favelas as makeshift home.  Did you know that a favela is built in the state Sao Paulo every six minutes?  So what happened after?  Well the governmetn never invested in industries in the Northeast, and therefore never invested in education and health care.  Now during this time even the center west region received investment with the creation of Brasilia in the 1960's.  

Now what should've occured? the govt needed to have invested more in the infrastructure of the Northeast and the North region.  Now we see this divide in educatoin, health,income, and almost every statistics.

Now the Southern most states of Parana, Santa Caterina, and Rio Grande de Sul are rich because they received heavy immigration from European fleeing the devastating wars, so these states have income.  

Now I hope I was clear in my explanation, and to correct this requires heavy investment in these regions, which means less investment in the South East regions which have dominated political life of Brazil since the begginning of the 20th century!

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 3:59 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
I want to have 51 posts!

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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 4:01 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
Ze


Junior Member
   
To erjbcdt:
Are you against public services, or against bad administration? Krysta's ideas can work perfectly fine, IF we revise the administration and bureaucracy of the public services.

As to the inequality problem, sorry, but I think that you are not seeing that it happens in the norhteast, the southeast, central,... the whole country suffers from inequality, regional inequality is a secondary problem that does not explain why few hold so much money in this country.

Total Posts: 93 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 6:59 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
krista



Junior Member
   
ah...I haven't read all the posts yet, but I read erjbcdt's response to my free education and health care posting, and I just have to defend my position.
I believe you, erjbcdt, that the system might have been bad in Brasil in the past. Do you think it's better now? Yes, perhaps the rich can get some real nice quality healthcare now, but please tell me what healthcare do the favela dwellers get? Or those in the really poor rural areas? I agree that making free or extremely cheap basic healthcare is a difficult task, but I claim that it is a possible one. I will give this example from estonia again just because i know how it works there:
people's employers pay a certain health-tax on each person they employ (and i think it's a constant amount regardless of how much they pay the worker..but i'm not really sure, because as an employee, i never saw the tax..it could be a %). Also, everyone who goes to work gets a health-card from the government (the card covers also the employee's spouse and children; and i think old people get the card just because they're old), and with that card all basic medical services are whether free or extremely cheap. Also, the card gives you a discount on some basic medications (good for old people).
The reason the system doesn't bankrupt is that it doesn't cover expensive special procedures. Yes, it is sad that a poor person can not have a brain surgery; however, at least everyone can go to a dentist and stuff like that. It keeps the basic public health in control. These public cheap doctors aren't perhaps the best, but they are still quite good, really (I use that service with no fears). And the rich people have also an option of going to some private doctors if they want. But at least everyone has access to some doctor...
Another thing good about this system is that since you only get this card when you have an official job, it reduces informal economy a lot. I don't have any numbers, but estonian media has mentioned that effect a lot. And since Brasil definitely has a problem with informal economy, perhaps that could be one of the cures...no?
Also, free public education doesn't have to be a problem. Again, as I said, in Estonia we have both - free public universities and then private ones that cost money. And it is actually much ahrder to get into a free public one not only because it's free, but also, because they are much better. It's bizarre, I have no idea actually why the public ones are better (well, some, not all), but our top three or four are definitely public/free universities (and we only have about 20 or 30 total).
Honestly, erjbcdt, it CAN work!! The problem is, as you said, bureaucracy and corruption. If someone manages to figure out a good enough system for Brasil, I think this could work there too. Then again, I must point out that one of the advantages estonia has is its small size. So perhaps giving local state governments more power would help reduce the bureaucracy (because everything is smaller and gets locally done; also with some regional differences according to local needs. one can't deny that often the problems in different parts of brasil are different).
Actually, I have a question related to this localism issue - do the state governments collect their own taxes or do they get a share from the total that the big government collects?
what do you think?
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ps: erjbcdt - since you're also in boston - happy free day!! (most of the colleges around here are closed tomoro, i guess yours too, right?). and those who said that there's fire in hell are most definitely wrong - all I can imagine there is snow and ice...brrrrr...

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Radio Do Mar: http://www.live365.com/stations/226288

Total Posts: 97 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 9:34 pm on Feb. 17, 2003 | IP
erjbcdt


Junior Member
   
ok, well maybe you(Jeromy) overlooked one key point of my story; well basically that the inequality that exists in Sao Paulo and Rio was created by the mass immigration of people from the Northeast, and if you go through the favelas it is simple enough to trace back their ancetors to the Northeast, and North regions.

I hope you can read portuguese I have this interesting article to post:  

Investimento de R$ 3 bi em 15 anos pode acabar com favelas paulistanas


São Paulo - Com um investimento de R$ 3 bilhões ao longo de 15 anos, seria possível urbanizar as favelas da capital, esvaziar as áreas de risco e de mananciais e regularizar as moradias, fornecendo títulos de posse aos ocupantes. A estimativa é da Secretaria da Habitação e Desenvolvimento Urbano do Município, que nesta quarta-feira divulgou um estudo sobre os núcleos favelados.


Realizado em parceria com o Centro de Estudos da Metrópole (CEM) da Universidade de São Paulo (USP), o mapeamento digital foi feito com base em 8.400 fotos aéreas e 800 vistorias, e revela que há 1.160.590 pessoas vivendo em 2.018 favelas. É um número que, no entanto, está aquém das expectativas. Até então, imaginava-se que o houvesse cerca de 2 milhões de favelados na capital.



Ainda assim, o ritmo de crescimento das favelas é surpreendente e bem superior ao da população da cidade. Entre 1991 e 2000, esse núcleos avançaram 2,97% ao ano, o que equivale ao surgimento de 464 novas favelas no período, ou quase uma por semana. Já o índice de crescimento da população total de São Paulo foi de 0,9% ao ano. Quanto à área, os núcleos favelados cresceram 24% na década, enquanto o adensamento populacional passou de 360 para 380 habitantes por hectare. O topo da lista de maiores favelas da capital continua sendo ocupado por Heliópolis, seguido por Paraisópolis e Pantanal.


De acordo com o Secretário da Habitação. Paulo Teixeira, o crescimento das favelas reflete os problemas econômicos da década de 90. "Houve um empobrecimento da população. As pessoas não tiveram mais como arcar com as despesas de casa e acabaram empurradas para áreas irregulares", afirmou. Teixeira disse ainda que, ao contrário do que muitos pensam, a maior parte dos favelados não vem de outros Estados. "Os próprios paulistanos, ou migrantes que já viviam na cidade há muito tempo, são maioria nas favelas."

Teixeira acredita que, a partir desse levantamento, ficará mais fácil encontrar formas de combater o problema e também de obter recursos para aplicar nos projetos. Por enquanto, a verba da Prefeitura destinada às favelas para este ano é de R$ 70 milhões, o que inclui financiamentos feitos pelo Banco Mundial e governo federal, mas há a expectativa de conseguir mais dinheiro ainda em 2003.


Um eventual parceiro seria o Banco Mundial, que, de acordo com o secretário, deve liberar recursos para a remoção dos favelados em áreas de mananciais. O gasto estimado para esse fim é de US$ 300 milhões, mas a liberação está condicionada a uma contrapartida do governo estadual.


Pelas contas do secretário, o correto seria destinar R$ 220 milhões anualmente à questão das favelas, com um prazo de 15 anos para a solução dos problemas. "É algo perfeitamente viável, desde que o problema seja atacado em três frentes", garantiu, explicando que o trabalho passaria pelo reassentamento dos moradores de áreas de risco; pela urbanização das favelas em terrenos adequados, por meio de infra-estrutura, com a instalação de rede de água, esgoto, escolas e postos de saúde; e regularização fundiária.



O plano inclui a concessão de 50 mil títulos de propriedade para favelados em abril deste ano. "Os documentos referem-se à áreas que já estão em processo de regularização. Isso não significa que estimulamos as ocupações clandestinas." Segundo o secretário, a Sehab tem intervenções para a urbanização e regularização em 248 áreas de favelas, que deverão beneficiar mais de 120 mil famílias.

Katia Azevedo


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Viva Brazil

Total Posts: 54 | Joined Feb. 2003 | Posted on: 5:07 pm on Feb. 18, 2003 | IP
Ze


Junior Member
   
Iniciativa muito legal, mas típicamente não dá certo. Sempre tem uma imensa parcela que não quer se mudar, outra que quer dar uma de esperto,... . Isso já foi tentado antes de diversas maneiras e nunca chegou a funcionar de forma satisfatória i.e melhorar as condições de vida dos favelados e diminuir a ocupação e degradação de áreas de risco.

Total Posts: 93 | Joined Jan. 2003 | Posted on: 10:46 pm on Feb. 18, 2003 | IP
 

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