There are three types of economies, say local economists. There are the developed economies. There are the undeveloped economies. And there is Argentina.
It’s spring…south of the equator. Flowers and cherry trees are in bloom along the Avenida 9 de Julio. This morning, we got up at 5 AM and stood out on the balcony…as the great city was just beginning to stir. What a joy to see it…
We’re here for several reasons:
First, there are few places in the world where you can learn so much about economics. If there is any mistake the Argentines haven’t made yet, you can bet they are working on it.
Second, we have a feeling that America is on the road to the Pampas too. The masses clamoring for relief…the central bank offering unlimited cash and credit…the government reacting with one foolish initiative after another – welcome to the future of the USA., dear reader. (About which…more to come…)
Third, we’re here because we invested in property down here. Everything takes follow-up…everything takes follow-through. Everything takes more time and money than you ever thought possible. We bought land because it was very cheap – but we quickly remedied that situation!
Cometh this note from the farm manager, in Spanish, of course:
“Señor Bonner, I hate to bother you, but the peóns are getting very unhappy. They haven’t been paid for three months…”
“But don’t you get the checks every month from the accountant in Buenos Aires?” we wanted to know.
“Yes, but something happened…the government stopped the banks from transferring money because it was coming from overseas and they thought we were laundering or something…”
“Well, what about that extra 75,000 pesos we sent in July? Why didn’t you use that?” we asked.
“Oh…we had to use that to buy hay. You know, there was a severe drought down here. I told you. We had to feed the cattle…”
Markets and Money