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  • musketeernumberone musketeernumberone Dec 25, 2008 6:24 AM Flag

    cost of oil production

    Winnie, you still don't get me...

    I do not "like to bash Brazil", I like to tell the truth.

    The standard of living is improving throughout much of Brazil, though people are not being affected equally. The commodities boom and easing credit was very good for the country, though it remains to be seen what happens now the boom has ended and credit conditions have tightened

    The rich do well because they've been earning 12-20% (pre-tax) in the fixed income markets and, until the summer, the Real was strong and BOVESPA was one of the best performing bourses in the world.

    The middle class has grown. Credit has made apartments, cars, and consumer durables more accessible (at a high price in terms of interest rates), but (and this is conjecture) I don't get the feeling that incomes rise at anywhere near the real rate of inflation (as opposed to the published rate of inflation). Inflation hurts anyone on a pension since COLA adjustments do not keep pace with real inflation.

    The poor have benefited greatly from the "bolsa familia" subsidized food program. This has created more disposable income which flows to the banks in the form of interest payments on the purchase of consumer durables (stoves, refrigerators and washing machines, etc.) They have a saying in Bahia, something like: "Everyone's poor, but nobody is starving..."

    Conditions in the public health and educational systems are quite bad. Favela-ization and related problems with drugs, violence and criminality seem well entrenched and intractable. The coutry need major investments in infrastructure (apart from the oil industry): Roads, power generation and distrubution, etc.

    Brazilians have a saying (this is not me bashing Brazil): Brazil is the country of the future, and always will be.

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    • < I do not "like to bash Brazil", I like to tell the truth.>

      Musk, I was going to make a joke about what you posted about Brazil. I will never forget a guy in New York lecturing someone in Caracas about how he the New Yorker knew more than someone in Venezuela. I thought there is no way Winny is going to lecture you about Brazil again, but once more, Winny rises (or is it falls) to the occasion. Winny must have "grass is greener" tatooed on his chest.

      A history teacher once told me that he loved France in spite of the French. I knew what he meant. France has wonderful food, almost unsurpassed beauty, a rich culture, and beautiful language and possibly, the most arrogant people alive.

      With Brazil, I would say the opposite. I love Brazilians in spite of Brazil. By that, I mean the crime, congestion, corruption, and inequality in society. I love the food, language, and culture of Brazil but am repulsed by Brazilian institutions and a corrupt and irresponsible government. There is no reason Brazil should have the crime rate it does.

      That stated, perhaps it is the lack of caring by the government that I found the rural life in Brazil so amazing. We took a cab to a beach town an hour from Rio and it was like going back to the 50s. Everyone knew one another, no one locked their doors, and I never saw so many smiles. I can see why you chose to live in small town Brazil.

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