May 3Liked by Joseph Francis

Agreed that having its fate tied to the UK meant that the deck was stacked against Argentina. I saw a graph of Argentina/UK GDP per capita (likely from Maddison) and the ratio was stable until 1975.

Canada had a terrible 1930s but then converged significantly vs. the U.S. from 1940-1980. I haven’t read enough on postwar Canadian history but they did share the same insecurity as Argentina about FDI’s negative impact on the capital account.

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What about Argentina/Canada? Based on uncorrected Maddison data, I believe the big break between the two countries was WWII rather than WWI. My personal theory is that Argentina’s WWII “neutrality” is an overlooked structural factor since Canada industrialized on a grand scale during that war and never looked back.

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I haven’t looked at the Canadian GDP stats yet, but I assume they would track the US stats closely.

In the Maddison data, WWII also seems like the big break in the Arg/US comparison. My revision of the data suggest, however, that WWI was also a substantial break. I think both wars were good for the US (and, by extension, Canada) and bad for Argentina.

Carlos Escude has written on WWII extensively, but I feel he overemphasizes the extent to which the US punished Argentina for its neutrality. In my opinion, the bigger problem was that Argentina fed the UK on credit, then after the war the British said that the only thing they’d give them to pay off the debt was ownership of the railways. Perón sold it as a nationalist triumph, but really it had been forced on him and was a good deal for the British.

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