Alvaro Vargas Llosa Archive

Alvaro Vargas Llosa is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute. More information

Goodbye, Maggie



Margaret Thatcher’s death caught up with me in the worst of places: a speech in Argentina. What to do? Should I follow my conscience and say a few words in memory of her—and risk offending an audience sensitive to the legacy of the Falklands War—or should I keep silent? I opted for saying a...
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Italy’s Populists



The populist reaction against Europe’s crisis continues to move south, as exemplified by the astounding success of the Five Star Movement led by comedian Giuseppe Grillo, which became Italy’s largest single party in the recent general elections. An organization that has been in existence for three years, the Five Star Movement has capitalized on...
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The Delusion of Money



French president Francois Hollande’s statement saying that the euro should not fluctuate according to the mood of the market; the complaint by Eurogroup president Jean-Claude Juncker about the euro being “dangerously high”; and the Bank of Japan’s recent decision to weaken the yen with “aggressive” quantitative easing confirm what we already knew: The world...
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Krugman’s Coin



Paul Krugman has made a tongue-in-cheek proposal that has set tongues wagging—having the U.S. Treasury Department mint a $1 trillion platinum coin in order to circumvent the federal debt ceiling. Actually, Krugman was not the first to propose this solution he himself calls “silly” but he has given it wider exposure. In these weird...
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Morsi’s Power Grab



The recent crisis in Gaza has confirmed that Egypt´s Mohamed Morsi is a new power player in the region. Everyone—including the United States, Israel and the Middle Eastern countries— paid almost as much attention to what he did or did not do than to the action on the ground and ultimately had to rely...
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The Next U.S. President and Latin America



Since the end of the Cold War, Latin America has hardly featured in U.S. presidential campaigns. The waning 2012 campaign has not been an exception. That said, Gov. Mitt Romney made a few references to Latin America in the debates but Obama let them pass without the slightest hint of curiosity. In the foreign...
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The Bazooka That Doesn’t Kill



The chairman of the Federal Reserve and the President of the European Central Bank, arguably the two most powerful men in the world right now, have done what many people had been asking for—fire the monetary bazooka that will supposedly obliterate the four-year economic crisis. In Europe, Mario Draghi announced he would buy unlimited...
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Stimulating—Enough Already!



Despite the evidence to the contrary, the dominant sentiment among politicians, academics and journalists in the United States, Europe and Japan continues to be that stimulating the economy via fiscal and monetary policy is the answer to the economic stagnation. It was stimulation—coupled with lower tax revenue due to the recession—that got several European...
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The Drowning Lifeguard?



With Berlin under pressure from everybody to rescue everyone, the recent confirmation of Germany´s economic slowdown and Moody´s threat to downgrade the Triple-A rating enjoyed by that country´s sovereign debt is a poignant reminder that in certain circumstances the lifeguard can also drown. The last time Germany used its muscle to pull a partner...
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Adios, Amigos



I had a weird dream the other day. Immigration, which is in a downward spiral in the U.S., continues to fall dramatically. At a certain point the debate shifts to the desperate need to attract foreigners. Eventually, headlines such as “a million immigrant visas to be granted on a first come, first serve basis...
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