Why Are Latin American Governments Considered Dictatorships While Angela Merkel’s Fourth Mandate Is Not?

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To Paola Estrada, the idea that Latin American governments are dictatorships are financial interests

Photo credit: Die Tagespresse

By: José Eduardo Bernardes / Source: Brasil de Fato / September 26, 2017

Angela Merkel’s fourth mandate as Chancellor of Germany was met by zero concern by critics and media analysts about whether there was a “dictatorship” in the European country, unlike cases of democratically-elected Latin American governments.

To Wilbert Villca, a Bolivian sociologist and doctoral candidate at the Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3 University, the element that guarantees Merkel’s permanence in  power without her government being accused of tyranny is the favorable economic situation of the country.

“The German Chancellor is approved of because she is functional to the interests of industrial and financial capital. So, while the economy is going through a period of growth, even under a true dictatorship, people tend to approve of the continuity of the government”, he said.

In Latin America, Evo Morales, who is about to hold a plebiscite to find out whether the people of his country support his re-election, is facing the same situation that former President of Venezuela Hugo Chávez encountered when he was considered a dictator for campaigning for a second term.

To Paola Estrada, member of the Coordination of Social Movements Towards the ALBA, the idea that Latin American governments are dictatorships is the result of financial interests that are disseminated by mass media.

“International media oligopolies have observable political stands on diverse political issues, on national and international geopolitical conflicts. We saw, for example, accusations of authoritarianism made to the governments of Maduro and Chávez in big media. Some of them even make the absurd affirmation that Venezuela’s government is a dictatorship while they celebrate Merkel’s victory in Germany, where she has been in power for 16 years”, she analyzed.

According to Villca, governments that make decisions to increase social rights pay the price for tipping the scale of the class struggle. And he recalls that Bolivian big media outlets omit mentioning the enormous social achievements of Evo Morales’ government.

“Simultaneously, there have been economic improvements, for example in Bolivia. Nobody is going to admit that right now Bolivia is the country with the fastest-growing GDP in Latin America. Nobody is going to congratulate Evo Morales. Any of them will question Evo and say that staying in power is the road to dictatorship,” he said.

Merkel, who is a member of the Christian Democratic Union party, won the elections with 33% of the vote last Sunday.

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