Sunday, November 19, 2023

THE PRAIRIE EDITOR: A Surprise In Argentina

Beginning with movie/TV star Ronald Reagan 52 years ago,

the world of politics has seen the electoral success of many

recent show business/celebrity personalities — figures who have

become notable presidents, prime ministers and major officials, 

and who have transformed their entertainment skills into 

victories at the ballot box.

Actors, comedians and other entertainment personalities have

frequently held political office in Brazil, Mexico, India, Thailand,

Phillipines, Japan, Sri Lanka, Italy, United Kingdom, Russia and 

other nations all over the world.

Earlier, in Argentina, actress and singer Eva (“Evita”) Peron 

became a powerful political figure.

In the U.S., actors Arnold Schwartzenegger and Fred Thompson,

and actor/wrestler Jesse Ventura attained political prominence

Two vey recent examples. of course, are Ukraine’s President

Volodymyr Zelensky and U.S. former President Donald Trump.

Now a new figure, Argentine TV personality Javier Milei joins

this group, having just won a landslide victory in that nation’s

presidential election.

Although a member of the country’s parliament, Milei emerged

suddenly, as did Zelensky and Trump, on to their national

political stage.

Milei is difficult to categorize. He is a social conservative, an

economic libertarian, and has been called an “anarcho-capitalist.”

He admires Donald Trump, the late Hasidic leader Rebbe

Menachem Schneerson, the U.S.A., Israel, and free markets.

He is pro-life and anti-climate extremism. He opposes current

Argentine government regulations, and wants to replace the

nearly bankrupt Argentine peso with the U.S. dollar. 

He dislikes socialism, jihadism, and Peronism.

With his trademark uncombed hair and leather jacket, he is a

charismatic speaker who has a huge following among working

class Argentinians.

Entertainment personalities in politics have ranged from liberal

and progressive to liberal and libertarian. Some have had more

success than others.

With many South American nations, including Brazil, veering

leftward, and others like Ecuador and now Argentina moving to

the right, the election of Javier Milei might not represent a clear

political trend in the continent, but with its free election and

peaceful transfer of power, Argentina has taken a hopeful step

out from its tumultuous and problematic past.


Copyright (c) 2023 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.

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