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Alvaro Vargas Llosa Archive

Alvaro Vargas Llosa is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute and his Independent books include Global Crossings: Immigration, Civilization, and America, Lessons from the Poor: Triumph of the Entrepreneurial Spirit, Liberty for Latin America: How to Undo Five Hundred Years of State Oppression and The Che Guevara Myth: And the Future of Liberty.
Full Biography and Recent Publications

What Is Kim Jong-un Thinking?



An interior monologue by North Korea’s dictator might go something like this: I can see myself as if I were back at the Liebefeld-Steinholzi school in Bern, Switzerland, with everyone convinced I was crazy because I talked little and was fixated on my PlayStation, keeping quiet for hours on end, observing others. What is...
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Playing Offense: Defeating the Assault on Free Speech



We live in times of hypersensitivity. One way in which collectivism acts against individual freedom is by declaring morally reprehensible—and oftentimes prohibiting—what is deemed “offensive.” The expression “political correctness” has come to define this assault on free speech that hides behind the mask of respect for the sensibilities of others. Any attempt to deviate...
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Another Bubble in the Making?



Moral hazard, easy money, and cheap credit have never produced good results. History is littered with examples of financial disaster brought about by monetary manipulation originating in central banks and then spreading to other parts of the system. One would think that the 2007/8 credit crisis, whose effects have not quite withered away, would...
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Venezuela’s Inferno



The decision by Venezuela’s Supreme Court, a political poodle of President Nicolás Maduro, to take over the powers of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, has sparked off massive demonstrations that the government’s vicious repression has been unable to stop. Although the decision was reversed a day later, the spirit of rebellion has proven resilient. Three...
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Four Years after Chavez’s Death, Venezuela Sinks Deeper into the Abyss



Venezuela’s dictatorship has tried to turn the fourth anniversary of Hugo Chávez’s death into a mystical experience of sorts—and a dose of much-needed political oxygen. Not a simple task in a country with inflation predicted to run at 1,600 percent, an economic growth rate of negative ten percent, a painful shortage of the most...
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Will Ecuador’s Voters Reject Failed Populism?



It is a pity that Ecuador’s presidential election, which will be held this coming Sunday, is not attracting more international attention. It should, now that the world is witnessing the rise of populist nationalism. For the past decade Ecuador has been governed by Rafael Correa. Like other Latin American populists, he won free elections...
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Putin’s World and Syria’s Nightmare



Vladimir Putin’s intervention in the U.S. election is and will continue to be a matter of controversy because we don’t know all the facts and therefore the full extent of what his government did (nor do we know the extent to which the U.S. intelligence community’s reports and leaks are devoid of political intention)....
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Cuba, What Next?



One would think there is no doubt in anybody’s mind about Fidel Castro’s horrific legacy. And yet we have heard important leaders say some outrageous things. What is Castro’s real political legacy? The last free election in Cuba was in 1948; Fidel Castro turned the island into a more ruthless police state than the...
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The Return of Protectionism



There are different ways to gauge the rise of protectionism. An obvious one is to count, as Global Trade Alert does, the number of measures adopted by various countries affecting competition from outside. Some 4,000 new barriers to trade have been adopted worldwide since 2008. Another way is to look at the trend in...
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Colombia Voters ‘Just Say No’ to Peace Pact with Narco-Terrorists



The result of Colombia’s plebiscite on the peace accord signed by the government and the FARC, the narco-terrorist organization, was a stunning surprise. More than 60 percent of the country abstained from Sunday’s referendum and, in a major blow to the polls, 50.2 percent of those who voted rejected the deal. Two major aspects...
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