I agree with your point, Mano. I have recently spent an extendedn amount of time in Central America and (even though it's not S. America) I have come away with a completely different perspective of poverty. My experience has given me much more insight into the things I see on TV, etc about Africa, too. The tragedy is that in addition to people being poor, they are also disempowered, which is to say that they have a minimal ability to do anything about their proverty. The condition is structural/politcal, not just economic, and it is not because the governments can't do something about it. Poor, needy, disempowered people are much easier to control, and manipulate, and are less of a threat than people with means and resources. This is a tradition in Latin America, and those who control the resources and power have no interest in changing the situation.
There is indeed poverty in the USA, but it's relative, because of the high cost of living there. You can live a decent life on $500/month in say, Ecuador, even raise a family, and maybe get a mortgage and credit cards. ($500/mth means you have a good job.) But in the USA, it get's you hardly anything at all. But, there is an ever present chance of being able to overcome your situation in the USA, which other nations don't have. And that makes, literally, all of the difference in the world.
· 1 decade ago