Lasciateci fare Vol. 1 (2015) - full transcript

In the last 250 years, free-market ideology has played a central role in the development of the logic and rhetoric that have influenced the daily life of populations throughout the Western world. It was cornered for a few decades during the twentieth century in favor of a social economy for the public interest, and then returned to the limelight in the last thirty years of the century to dominate the logics that drive world economies, doing the favor of the elites at the expense of 99%. Through the testimony of six people informed about the facts, Laissez-faire offers a historical and ideological perspective through which to identify the fundamental problems of the economic mechanism on which Western societies are based.

In the last 20 years of the twentieth century

the economic elites of Western

societies turned history upside down.

They regained more power than

they ever had and made sure that

no one among the people would really notice.

Pushed by the free world market,

their power exploded while states,

democracies and citizens were

slowly deprived of their sovereignty.

Their system, however, has a flaw:

it devours everything it can and eventually

ends up devouring itself.

After the financial crash of 2007 that

hit the world, responsible

investment banks

are declared too big to fail

but the huge holes they cause

are covered up everywhere with state money.

Both in the United States and in

Europe the big banks close to

bankruptcy are all bailed out.

In the United States some of the great

managers were called to answer but

this time there were not only men

in the dock.

Despite the admission of guilt,

the accused returned to freedom.

On the other hand, ideas cannot be imprisoned.

Neoliberalism is

the political theory based

on affirmation, which arises from the affirmation of the industrial revolution.

Hence the affirmation of

capitalist society that it finds a system

of describing itself: that is, the new

bourgeois and capitalist class finds a

system of describing itself, its dynamics.

Obviously it does so in positive

terms, that is in terms of

legitimizing the social order in

which they find themselves prevailing and trying to give it

a rational foundation.

It is a thesis that can be traced back to

Adam Smith's infamous

invisible hand theorem of the late eighteenth century.

It was then subsequently reworked in many ways.

The basic idea of ​​neoliberalism is that in fact the individual,

selfish action of each

individual, of each company, allows

for a sort of heterogenesis of purposes

to lead to collective well-being.

In a sense, individual selfishness

actually leads to collective well-being.

Liberalism believes with Darwin,

Darwinism, this type of

philosophy: that in the end the best,

the strongest, must survive.

And it obviously confuses the strongest with the best.

In a complex and

class-structured society it is obvious that the

strongest are the richest, the best equipped.

And consequently they want to define

themselves as better and perpetuate themselves.

This is the weak point of liberalism which

in fact struggles to support

social mobility, to reward merit and

so on.

It is a thesis that actually served

interests, it served dominant interests.

All those who can then exercise power

in their action on the

market evidently feel

protected by this vision of things

because they can operate


It is no coincidence that the doctrine

also known as "Laissez-faire" should actually

be reinterpreted as the doctrine of

"Laissez-nous faire" that is, "Let us do".

There is only one major obstacle to liberalism:


In 1975 an international institution

called the Trilateral Commission

published a volume written by three different authors

entitled "The Crisis of Democracy".

The introduction of the Italian edition is

signed by Giovanni Agnelli who opens

by describing what the Trilateral Commission

of which he was a member is:

"The Trilateral Commission is a group of

private citizens who come together to

study and propose balanced

solutions to problems of burning

international relevance and of common interest."

The three authors, each for his area of

​​belonging, describe in detail

what are the obstacles in making

neoliberalism coexist with democracy.

The conclusions of the American Samuel Huntington

were these:

"some of the problems of government in the United States today

arise from an excess of democracy.

What democracy needs instead is

a greater degree of moderation.

Democracy is but one of the sources of authority.

In many situations,

whoever is better, more experienced or

older in the hierarchy can take

precedence over the democratic process."

It has undoubtedly served, that is, it has given a

scientific nature to industrial

activity, to microeconomic activity.

On the macroeconomic level, on the other hand,

it is more purely political, it is a theorization

of how and why they find themselves having,

and holding, the principles

of social justice.

Social justice is what they manage to

impose with their economic power.

However, while subjects endowed

with power obviously find

advantages from this pervasive dominant

ideology, in fact from the point of view

of the overall efficiency of the system,

we are faced with a series of failures.

Liberalism in the 30s entered into

crisis with the crisis of '29 in a blatant,

obvious way, with colossal increases in

unemployment and without any

capacity of the system to

spontaneously emerge from that crisis.

Neoliberalism today enters a crisis because the crisis of

2008, the so-called Great Recession

how the International Monetary Fund has defined it,

does not seem to be able

to resolve itself thanks to market forces.

And once again we are faced

with a series of

testimonies, proofs of the fact that

evidently this doctrine, which is

often considered scientific,

is considered irrefutable and to which

fine brains devote themselves in order to

defend and support it,

in reality this doctrine does not find confirmation in the facts.

The symbolic date of the birth

of the modern economy is 1776,

when Adam Smith publishes his most important work:

"An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations".

Thanks to this work, Smith

is considered the founding father of liberalism

but in reality it has only been used as a pretext.

He never wrote that the market

was sufficient to satisfy all the

needs of the individual, so much so that

he considered a free and gratis

state education fundamental.

Furthermore, the state of Smith was that

made up of the oligarchies of the time,

of the aristocracy, certainly not

referring to a democratic state.

The same year as Smith's publication,

the American Revolution ends and

13 years later, in the heart of Europe,

the French Revolution breaks out.

The liberal principles expressed by

the French and American constitution and

Smith's suggestive ideas on the thrust

of the industrial revolution, gave

birth to the modern capitalism we know today.

The power of the bourgeoisie exploded but at the same time

capitalism produced a new class of oppressed.

In the nineteenth century the

exploitation of labor was very high and

the living conditions of workers on

the verge of survival.

It was for this reason that in the mid-nineteenth century a

new intellectual movement set out to

subvert the rules.

By studying the history of societies and

their development in the recent capitalist era,

Karl Marx, until then a philosopher,

elaborated a profound analysis

that changed the view of the

economy forever.

He prophesied that if conscious and

organized workers could overcome

capitalism, a system which,

as he theorized, produces

exploitation and is subject to cyclical crises.

Condemned to a single destiny:

to implode on itself.

While Marx's ideas were inflaming masses of

workers across Europe, three economists,

taking up Smith's invisible hand principle,

invent a new theory.

It is called "general equilibrium" and

affirms that the entire market, if it is not

subjected to interference by the states,

regulates itself, generating well-being

for the entire community.

This new economic current will be elaborated later by

other economists and will take

the name of neoclassicism.

The basis of modern neoliberalism.

The bourgeoisie of the early twentieth century and

above all the great bankers and

industrialists understand that the principles of the

neoclassical economy serve their

interests perfectly.

Governments at the turn of the century were little

more than committees for their affairs and

economic policy choices throughout

the West therefore moved in

the direction of "Let us do".

Capitalism runs so fast that

trade becomes global,

as do the interests of the elite,

as do wars.

While more than 10 million workers, having become soldiers, die

in the trenches, in Russia, the masses of

workers and peasants led by Lenin

give life to the October revolution.

The largest state in the world abandoned capitalism.

On the ideas of Marx, Lenin

built a new type of state,

a new social model without private property,

without market economy and free

enterprise which would ensure that

work was no longer exploited and that the

state was no longer a means in the hands

of the elites only.

Marxism-Leninism will soon become Stalinism

and the old elites will be

replaced by new ones

but in fact from that moment Russia has withdrawn from the games.

In the West, however, the games remain open.

Capitalism runs fast,

firmly tied to the reins of liberalism.

Social imbalances and poverty are increasing more and more.

Many are forced to abandon

their land.

Those who remain, on the other hand, will be forced to

obey new ideologies.

But if liberalism in Europe produces

dictatorships and wars, in the United States

it continues to run free.

The market, especially the financial one,

has no limitations of any kind.

Stocks and stocks grow

more and more, inflating a bubble

that seems to never end.

Until one Thursday in late October

1929 in the Wall Street Stock Exchange Building

the ghost of Marx and his old

prophecy showed up.

That day was the first time that

capitalism collapsed on itself.

By neoliberalism we mean

an economic doctrine that

was born in reaction to the social economy

for the public interest that exploded with


throughout the period of the

so-called classical thinkers.

It had a very important relaunch

after the First World War with

thinkers like John Robinson and

obviously John Maynard Keynes

but I can't help but remember Michał Kalecki

that nobody remembers. A Pole, an economic


These men and women created

the social economy, that of the

so-called welfare, the Beveridge in England.

They created an economic idea

that led us from Dickens' 800, that is,

the exploitation of poor people,

children who worked in the mines,

to the idea that a company is

a state that had to use its own currency

for the public interest guaranteeing


It is a thesis that starts from what

is the doctrine of the

so-called critical economists.

First of all John Maynard Keynes.

When Keynes wrote - and he wrote

in the time of the Great Depression of the

1930s - he argued that

evidently without the intervention of the

economic policy authorities,

a capitalist economy is not able

spontaneously to reach full employment.

In this sense and according to

this vision, it is necessary that

the intervention of political authorities,

of the government as well as of the central bank,

must be coordinated precisely in order to

create that overall demand for

goods and services that allows the

production of goods to grow and therefore

the employment of workers to a

sufficient extent to be able to create

full employment.

In 1933, President Roosevelt implemented a

plan to get the United States out

of the Great Depression based

primarily on the Keynesian model.

It took the name of the New Deal.

The first measure of the New Deal is

the enactment of the Glass-Steagall law

which provides for the separation of commercial banks

from investment banks.

Subsequently, dozens of state programs

for job creation

are created.

The millions of unemployed who

enter those state plans work

on the construction of large public

works such as roads, dams, schools,

public buildings and services to the citizens.

Unemployment is quickly halved

and infant deaths, suicides, crimes

and disease decrease. And at the same time,

public utility works are being

built all over the United States.

The New Deal radically changes the role

of the state in the economy.

Public power is no longer a mere spectator.

On the contrary, it becomes the regulator of the system.

The Roosevelt government is also the first

in the history of the United States to

enter into a collaborative relationship

with the unions, involving them in the measures.

The United States is recovering from

the Great Depression

thanks to Roosevelt's

social policies.

In Europe, on the other hand, nationalisms

are becoming more and more aggressive.

As the war causes tens of millions of

civilian and soldier deaths, in 1944,

there was a major conference in

Bretton Woods,

United States, in which future

victors agreed on trade relations

once the conflict

was over.

At Bretton Woods, Keynes proposed a model

aimed at protecting economies that

applied a criterion of solidarity between

states but his proposal was not


Instead, that of Harry Dexter White was chosen

which led to the establishment of

the International Monetary Fund and

the World Bank. Economic organizations that

could lend money to adhering countries

but that a few decades later

will turn into powerful weapons in the

hands of the elites.

World War II ends.

The United States and the Soviet Union are

the big winners.

Germany, occupied by the allied

armies, is divided. And with her, the whole

world is divided.

In 1945 Europe was reduced to rubble.

The cities are devastated by

bombing and the population

severely impoverished.

But in that political void created by the war,

European societies reach a new


The Beveridge report entered the agenda

policy of the Labor party that won

the elections in the United Kingdom in 1945.

If in England the political balance simply changes,

in France, Italy and Germany, on the other hand,

new constitutions are drawn up.

Liberalism was

considered the cause of the imbalances

it created and therefore the new theories

- the Keynesian theory - regulated society.

They ruled it on the basis that much of

the Keynesian economic model

was incorporated into the constitutions.

In various ways then,

in England, where there is no

rigid written constitution, there was

the famous Beveridge Report.

In short, the company began a little

to reconsider the balance.

This, however, was a tremendous setback.

A tremendous setback to which we say

the liberal soul of capitalism, almost totalitarian,

was willing to continue making concessions

in the post-war period of the twentieth century,

after the Second World War,

because there were Stalin's tanks,

because there was the Soviet bloc,

the Iron Curtain

and then liberalism, if it had

revealed itself again in its attempt to

control society in its previous forms,

would have unleashed a

reaction not only of

social instability but of real


The hold on the people that the socialist

and communist parties had

in the immediate postwar period and the

Soviet giant by now at the gates of Europe

unbalanced the political equilibrium.

The post-war constitutions in fact

attested to a change of era that had begun

ten years earlier with the New Deal

in the United States.

The democratic state that intervenes

in the economy for the development and

well-being of the entire community.

The Constitution of Italy of 1948 is

perhaps the most advanced social treaty

that humanity has written.

And it is, more than the others, conditioned by the Keynesian model.

In fact, its fundamental rights

can only be guaranteed by state spending.

The Constitution has actually never really been applied.

The sixties and seventies

saw severe struggles in the squares and in the factories.

Democracies, as the authors of

"The Crisis of Democracy" also wrote,

in those years were impetuous and

workers obtained unexpected rights

until a few years earlier.

In the mid-1970s, other nations

freed themselves from new and old dictatorships.

In Portugal, Greece and Spain, new constitutions

with a strong social content

are being drawn up.

In the 30 years that followed the war,

Europe earned the nickname

"Continent of rights".

In a certain sense, a good face was put on a bad game and therefore

continued in the concession to the Keynesian model,

to democratic constitutions,

to the creation of social rights

and therefore to the redistribution

to multi-class society, that is to

a political power that was shared, in which

the political class it had the function of

mediation not only of representing

the economically prevailing interests

but of mediation between the various

economic or social classes.

In the early 1970s,

capitalism was really changing face.

The Keynesian system adopted

by the governments and the social rights

gained by the peoples were pushing

the whole West towards a new social order

where poverty and misery

left room for the formation of a

new economic class:

the middle class.

The masses, ever richer and more powerful,

would never again be blackmailed as before.

But the idea of ​​a return,

of a revenge, always remained latent.

And this aspiration then finds

cultural references precisely in the

neoliberal economists who have various

strands but the main one

- the one that had the most influence -

was that of the Austrian school of von Mises,

von Hayek who in turn, for various

vicissitudes that now it would take a long time

to retrace, it has a huge direct influence

on the Chicago school, on the

monetarism that is embodied

in Friedman. When you find

the perception that there is a

loosening of the deterrent capacity

of the Soviet bloc,

a sort of continuous tension for which

they were trying to implode this system

- and then it actually succeeded -

the attempt to recover all the lost ground begins.

So these what they do:

they want to bring the machine back

and say: "This social economy is not good for us.

It has given too much power to the people,

too much power to consumers, too much power

to families,

the idea of ​​the welfare state is

an aberration. The state - and this is

the number one point of neoliberalism - has grown

too large. It is heavy, it is huge, it is

powerful, it has the army, it has the sovereign parliament,

it has the currency to infinity, therefore

an economic power that no private

individual can ever have. This state must

shrink". And indeed the number one dogma

of neoliberalism is to shrink

the state, practically make it disappear from the scene.

The theories of the Austrian and later

Chicago schools give new life

to the aspirations of the elites.

It is in fact from the studies of Hayek and Friedman

that the ideology of "Let us do"

takes the name of neoliberalism.

Milton Friedman has the opportunity to

explain this worldview in numerous

lectures, academic debates,

television talk shows, and even a TV series.

From this excerpt,

the key concepts of neoliberalism can be understood.

There are no acquired rights,

housing, health, education and work.

Each individual has to

earn them on the market.

Workers are individual cells

in competition with each other.

Everyone will be rewarded based on their productivity.

Investments must be

decided by businessmen and

companies that are most capable by nature.

Wealth must flow

from top to bottom.

The condition is that the state and

the trade unions must not interfere and society

will move towards a natural order:

the order of the markets.

At one point it was decided to practically give the vote to the markets.

Yes, the market vote.

That is, to take it away from the citizens. That is,

the citizens are no longer those who have to

decide on the goodness or otherwise of

their country's economic policy choices,

but rather

the markets that decide. Why?

Because there is this presumption that it is a

current of neoliberal thought that

says that markets regulate themselves

while instead it is absolutely not true

that markets regulate themselves because this

principle actually means that

the state must absolutely not intervene,

must not interfere in the

mechanisms of market because the market

finds its right balance, for better or worse.

While instead we have seen at the state

of affairs that the markets not

only do not find the right balance but

also create such big problems where

then the state must

intervene in support.

Ignoring the fundamentals of the economics of

macroeconomics - which are the

Keynesian ones, because liberal macroeconomics

does not exist - liberalism is wrong

because it wants to apply

the criteria of business management

to macroeconomics, therefore to the state,


to large figures etc. corporatized

and this does not stand up

to the criticism of history.

While classical and Keynesian

economic theories elaborate their

principles by studying reality, neoclassical

ones instead adapt reality to their principles.

The free market

could work but in a system of

perfect competition.

In a society where people all have

the same means, the same

information, the same wealth,

the same social status.

The idea that distinguishes neoliberalism

is that the action of the central bank

must not be aimed at creating employment,

the government must reduce

the public deficit as much as possible

and in general the state must reduce

its overall size compared to the rest

of the economy and


it is necessary that the state

abandon a whole series of sectors in which

it may have operated through massive

processes of divestment and privatization.

They believe that if I do not subtract

resources from the private sector, this will be induced to

spend and invest more because it will have

expectations of having a greater

availability of expenditure and therefore everyone

will tend to either consume or invest more

- crowding out - and therefore

this would reduce greater growth.

Because while if those resources are

taken by the state, they are used in

efficiently if the same amount of

resources, of wealth, is left

in the hands of the private,

the private will automatically be able to

use them more efficiently. But this is

a purely hypothetical theory. It has never

occurred in history even when

neoclassicals first theorized this.

As for the large privatization process in Italy

- in Italy in the nineties -

in the nineties Italy achieved the

world record of privatizations after

the United Kingdom. Well, today

we can take stock of that massive

privatization process according to

the conclusion reached

by the Court of Audit.

Privatizations have led to a

sharp increase in costs and a great

gain for the so-called mediators, that is,

of all those investment banks of

those intermediaries who stood

between buyers and sellers

at the time of the divestment operations.

Finally, paradoxically, privatizations

very often led to an

increase in tariffs, contrary to the vulgate,

contrary to

the dominant ideology.

Here, the Italian case is a case for example,

in which we note how the whole

ideology of privatization

as a factor of efficiency and has not found

reliable confirmation in the data.

The public debt must be entrusted

to the markets and cannot be subject

to the intervention of the treasury through

the central bank which must respond

to the indications of the government,

of the treasury of each country.

The idea of deflation as a permanent goal

- or rather deflation -

of inflation control as

a permanent goal which is this basic idea,

this hostility, the idea that

the public debt therefore the state must be

made a debtor under common law

like any other economic entity

and therefore we must turn to

markets and cannot print money because

by printing money it increases inflation.

Which is not detectable.

Even today, we continue

to have to refute this idea.

An economic ideology that basically says this:

"The state must stop using money".

His weapon, his number one cannon,

his power, his number one

firearm for the social economy

It must stop using the coin.

And how did they convince the states?

They invented dogmas, fears,

non-existent ghosts with which

they paralyzed politics

and public opinion. They invented

the dogma and the ghost of public debt.

The state spends too much, it creates the

public debt which is the debt of the citizens

- everyone believed it -

this thing is completely false because

the public debt is a kind of state

which is the credit of the citizens, it is not

the debt of the citizens and it never will be

for the next two million years.

But they have all convinced that the public debt

is the debt of the citizens.

Everyone was afraid of the state that spends.

They invented the phantom

of inflation.

If the state spends on social goods,

on health, on pensions, there will be

inflation. Inflation means that

we all go to buy bread with

wheelbarrows. They took the ghost of the

Weimar Republic, they waved it

in all the newspapers, on all sides

and of course they created this

terrorism. Inflation is a ghost.

I give you a fact: Japan, USA,

England and the ECB itself have been

trying for years with all their means

to create inflation and they are not succeeding.

But the neoliberals have convinced

public opinion and politicians that

inflation is a monster and the state

must not spend. So away the money from

social services, pensions,

public salaries and so on.

The dominant thesis, the neoliberal thesis is

that the flexibility of employment

contracts, precariousness, allow for

an increase in employment levels

because according to the neoliberals, if

contracts are flexible then

entrepreneurs should be

incentivized to increase employment

levels, they should be

have more incentives to hire.

In reality, if we look at the data once again,

if we look once again at the

empirical tests that have been

carried out over more than

twenty years on this issue,

well we realize that it is not

possible to establish any correlation

between the increase in

job insecurity and increased employment.

Nothing less than the OSCE has come

to this conclusion. The OSCE

has been a supporter of the

liberal theses, more convinced,

more determined, has adopted, has carried out

a series of empirical research

in an attempt to demonstrate that the

flexibility of work leads to more

employment and it has not succeeded.

These empirical researches have actually produced

results that contradict the doctrine.

The same chief economist of the

International Monetary Fund

Olivier Blanchard in 2006 recognized precisely that

it is not possible to establish any

relationship between greater precariousness

and greater employment.

Therefore, as in the very top

of the world

economic institutions,

the defenders, supporters of a doctrine

that we could define as neoliberal,

have actually recognized that the idea

that more employment can be

determined by greater precariousness is

in reality an idea that is not reflected.

In their conception,

for example, the use of a subsidy to those

who are taken out of the world of work.

For example, the concept of citizenship

income is present in Hayek and therefore

in a certain sense the more aggressively

neoliberal economic process does not

exclude the fact that one can then go

and help the most disadvantaged but always

does it with a class vocation,

deeply classist. That is,

it is preferred that a person stay at home and

have no work and that perhaps, however,

enjoy a monetary subsidy rather than

having that person in

the workplace.

The reason is political, not economic.

Because by excluding this whole series of

people from the world of work,

I also exclude them from the decision-making

capacity on what, how much and how

to produce and consequently

I leave this decision in the hands of

a few and if you want to react,

challenge these policies not it must be done

simply from the economic side, that is,

it must not be explained only that economically

they do not work because in itself

it is not sufficient to understand why

they exist. They exist to eliminate a

growing segment of the population from

decision-making capacity. When you do not have

a job but you are subsidized you are not

fully citizens and consequently

even if I eat, live, survive, etc.

I do not participate fully

in the democratic process.

This dominant economic thought that sees

capital as the benefactor of humanity

as long as it is absolutely

free from any constraint,

this has meant media, it has meant

large newspapers, it has meant

television, it has meant

university teaching. For 30 years

in university economics courses,

we say that between 90-95 percent

have been teaching neoliberal economic

theories. Even after the crisis from

2007-2008 severely beaten up

these theories.

This neoliberal revenge that has

shrunk the states has defeated

the classical economy for the public

interest has paid - because it is

obviously the big financial capitals

that are behind - it has paid the

journalists, it has paid the televisions,

it has paid the intellectuals, it has

paid the university, but we have proof of this.

Karl Brunner, the great economic

name of twentieth-century neoliberalism,

said at a conference in 1976

- if I'm not mistaken in Bremen, Germany - he said

"We must conquer the universities,

conquer the publishers of the textbooks of

economics, pay our own

authors to say what we say".

As a counter-offensive, started

in the universities and in the so-called "think tanks"

- that is, the reservoirs of thought - already

in the 50s and 60s

the Chicago boys, of which Milton Friedman

was the best known representative.

As early as the 1950s,

in a climate of cold war,

a US government program, created to

combat socialism in South America,

began to finance exchanges of economics

students with the University of Chicago.

Milton Friedman and his people thus have the

opportunity to indoctrinate hundreds of

economists who returned to their countries

in the hope of being able to influence the

economic choices of their governments.

The experiment of the so-called Chicago boys

was tried in several states of South America

but only in one there were the

favorable conditions to experiment their studies: Chile.

Under the regime of Augusto Pinochet.

In 1971, two years before

its rise, Unidad Popular, the Chilean

left-wing coalition led by

Salvador Allende wins the elections.

Its program envisages the

nationalization of raw materials and

primary services to the population,

the increase in wages,

the freezing of prices on consumer goods

and the participation of workers in the

management of state industries.

Allende's project is aimed at the

realization of a democratic socialism

and its fulfillment can

upset the political and economic

equilibrium of the whole world.

At the end of 1972, Allende spoke
at the United Nations

no only dennouncing the US

but to indicate something
much more serious:

the lack of control over
multinationals and

their harmful role.

This was just before the

that today dominates the world.

We are before
a truly frontal conflict

between the large multinational
corporations and the States.

They are being under threat
in their most fundamental

political, economical and military

decisions by global corporations
that do not depend on any State,

and whose activities

are not fiscalised by and do
not answer to any Parliament,

or any institution that
represents the commom interest.

In a word:

the very political structure
of the world is being undermined.

Allende denounces the activity of

American multinationals that exploit

labor and raw materials in Chile and the rest

of South America.

The implementation of the Unidad Popular

program would wipe out any possibility

for American business to exploit

labor and resources on Chilean territory.

But Chile also poses a threat

beyond the Iron Curtain.

The leaders of the Soviet Communist Party

never fully supported

Allende and his party.

The example of a democratic socialism

would have brought down the foundations of their

system of power.

It is above all the example of Allende that frightens the power.

Chile would have been a model

for other states to follow and could have

triggered a chain reaction

across South America.

Allende's project had to be

stopped in the bud.

A real economic war led by

the United States is unleashed

against Chile.

But the Unidad Popular government is resisting

and the consensus among the Chilean people

continues to grow.

Without being a martyr,

I shall not give
a single step back!

Let them know that!

I will leave the Moneda

only when I have carried
out the people's mandate!

I have no alternative,

Only by shooting me

will they stop my will

of carrying out the
people's programme!

Sept. 11. The enemies

of freedom carried out an act

of war against our country.

At the first light of dawn, armored

troops advanced against our

presidential palace.

Allende, his ministers and advisers were inside.

Allende did not flee while the Palacio de La Moneda

was being bombed.

He was murdered.

The coup was led by General Pinochet

but backed and supported by the

US government and the CIA.

After the harsh repression on the Chilean people, Pinochet

now had to return the favor to those who

had helped him to take power.

The request is simple: to call back

Milton Friedman's Chicago boys.

Chicago graduates will occupy all

key positions to govern

the Chilean economy: the ministry

of economics, finance,

the central bank, as well as university

professorships and newspaper editors.

The reforms imposed were very hard and

only feasible by a brutal dictatorship.

Neoliberalism hands Chile back into

the hands of American business,

interrupting the great economic

and social development that the

Allende government was carrying out.

His ideas and his actions, however,

leave history a great example and

in a few years his words become prophecy.

The large multinational corporations

not only go against the interests
of developing countries,

their dominating and
uncontrolled action

exists also in the industrialised nations
where they establish themselves.

It is our trust in ourselves,

that which increases our faith
in the great values of Mankind,

in the certainty
that these values shall prevail,

that they cannot be destroyed!

When Allende gave this speech,

the power of multinationals was only

a crumb of what it is today.

In the mid-1970s, in the United States

and Europe, democracies were increasingly

participated. The socialist and communist

parties had a great popular consensus

and the union struggles, determined and

resolute, involved all the workers.

"If there will be occupation, there will also be from our part. Night and day if necessary. All of us together."

To impose neoliberal

policies it was necessary to

circumvent the obstacle or to

influence public opinion with a slow and long

work of infiltrating every place

that allowed those ideas to be transmitted.

Universities and the media

were the main targets.

To infiltrate politics, however, something more

was needed. In those years the so-called

"think tanks" were born and spread,

authentic reservoirs of thought in

which to train white-collar workers to be inserted

in positions of power in the institutions.

When in the mid-70s an oil crisis

due to the closing of the

taps by the producing countries

causes inflation to soar throughout the West,

the Keynesian system is no longer able to

guarantee the same degree of development

as in previous years.

For those who worked a lifetime to

tear down that system,

that was the moment of the limelight.

In '74 Friedrich von Hayek won the Nobel Prize

for economics and in '76

the prize went into the hands of Milton Friedman.

Friedman, go home!

Friedman, go home!

Long live the people of Chile!


Stop the capitalism!

From that moment it was a little over

two years before Friedman's ideas

found a place in the parliament and

government of a democratic country.

In 1979 Margaret Thatcher won the

elections in Great Britain.

Although British society reacts

strongly to its policies,

the process has begun and as

Thatcher herself said there is no alternative.

Two years after Thatcher's victory

in the United Kingdom,

it was Ronald Reagan's turn in the United States.

Winning the election was

child's play for a former Hollywood actor

mainly because none of his films

were funded like his campaign.

To bring neoliberalism

to the United States you needed an actor and

who better than an actor could have

read a script like this:

The political intentions of the

Reagan government were immediately clear,

as were those of Margaret Thatcher.

Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan

presided over their respective governments

for most of the 1980s.

They introduce reforms that demolish

the social rights won in previous

decades and profoundly transform society.

Large pockets of poverty

are forming again and as at the beginning

of the twentieth century, ever richer elites

acquire immense global power.

The Reagan government immediately

resumes the colonial policy

that the previous Carter government was easing.

For this new colonialism

no warships and occupation troops

are needed: to plunder the resources

of a nation and keep it in a state of misery,

just use the debt trap.

The weapons are the dollars of the

International Monetary Fund and the neoliberal economic recipes.

But it happens, sometimes, that someone does not fit.

"Here's another one. You have

a Levi's branded shirt

so you advertise at Levi's.

Sure, they did that shirt right.

Levi's makes very nice jeans. For real.

But it's an American product and you're not

American, you're not from San Francisco

and it says San Francisco. So?!

Do they at least pay you? Because if they don't pay you it doesn't make sense.

And that other one back there,

the one who asked a question earlier.

Harvard? But do you at least know where it is?

Sometimes I don't understand anything anymore.

Too many oddities, don't you think?

But do you really think that here we don't know and

we can make nice t-shirts?

Thomas Sankara wants the inhabitants of

their country, Burkina Faso, to benefit

from their resources and consume

the goods they produce themselves.

Assassination technicians. It was they who proposed the

financing channels, the lenders.

Telling us that these were the right things to do

to get our country's development,

the growth of our people and its well-being off the ground.

We were presented with packs of

appealing financial dossiers and prospectuses.

Those files were very elegant.

But now we find ourselves in debt

for the next 50, 60 years and possibly more.

That is, we have been persuaded

to compromise our peoples for 50

years and more.

They want all their money back.

They tell us that otherwise there would be a crisis.

But no, Mr. President.

They played, now they can even lose.

They are the rules of their game and life will go on.

But if Burkina Faso is left alone

to refuse to pay, I will not be

there at the next conference.

If, on the other hand, I have the support of all of you,

- support of which I will have a great need -

if we are all united we can avoid paying

and therefore use our resources

for the development of our countries.

Sankara was killed on October 15, 1987.

The hand that held the gun was that of his former friend,

General Blaise Compaoré,

who with the approval of the Reagan and Mitterrand

governments took his place in the government.

As Burkina Faso and other developing

countries are again subjugated by

the interests of Western elites,


continues its charge in every corner of the world.

Even where you would never expect.

Deng Xiaoping, the new leader of the

Communist Party of China,

is suddenly fascinated by Friedman's ideas.

His phrase "We must allow a few men

to get rich so that all the others

will benefit from it"

is still famous in China.

But at the end of the 80's there is a real

turning point in history.


is being reunited and the Soviet Union is about to dissolve.

Beyond the wall, waiting for the Russians, there was no freedom and democracy

or that capitalism with a human face that everyone expected.

On the eve of the

first democratic elections in Russia

after 80 years of regime,

the British weekly The Economist

headlined an article urging

Gorbachev to follow Pinochet's Chilean model.

The Washington Post echoed it

by publishing an article that

even reads that "an economy needs

free markets but not

free people to function".

The entire industrial apparatus of

the former Soviet Union is privatized.

In the following years, Russia sinks

so quickly into misery

and abject poverty that the life expectancy

of Russians drops by almost ten years.

A real, authentic and

little-told social catastrophe.

In less than twenty years, neoliberalism

went from the books and theories of Hayek

and Friedman to the decisions of the

majority of governments in the world.

No, not all over the world.

The Old Continent, with its

constitutions, still resisted.

No siege would have brought down its walls.

To conquer it, a deception was needed.