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one step at a time…

housing for the masses: barrio butteler, 1910

One of the things that has always impressed me about Argentina is their commitment to social welfare. Before the onslaught of comments to the contrary, hear me out. Without question, you can find lots of examples of the oligarchy looking out for itself, plenty of internal conflicts that jeopardized social welfare, & certainly a lot of work left to be done at present. But the average citizen’s standard of living was often a big concern during 20th-century in Argentina.

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buenos aires: supermarket price comparison

Argentina, Buenos Aires, Disco, supermercado, supermarket

Many people are complaining about rising prices on basic food items. At the grocery store in mid-February, a woman told me she thought Argentines were cowards for putting up with price increases… an interesting opinion. I’m not sure what she would do, but my idea is to stick with a group of basic food products & monitor prices at the three largest chain supermarkets over the next few weeks. One of the first big news stories after devaluation was the rise of bread prices by 30%. Now the milk industry is following suit.

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argentina: legal again

US passport, stamps

A long time since the last update but with good reason. I just got back from a quick Uruguay trip to renew my passport stamp. I’m officially in Argentina as a tourist which allows for a 90-day stay. Every time those 90 days expire, I have to travel outside of Argentina & return again to obtain a new entry stamp. Sounds like a hassle but with work trips to Europe, it usually isn’t a problem.

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argentina: ghosts from the past

Argentina, Buenos Aires, Centro Naval

There has been a lull in big stories during the past month, but many smaller events to track. In spite of the economic and political crisis (or precisely because of it), the 4-day holiday during Holy Week saw a huge increase in local tourism as almost the entire city of Buenos Aires left on vacation. Many stayed in Argentina to keep costs down, & it was bizarre to see so few people in town.

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argentina: another crazy week

Argentina, Buenos Aires, Casa Rosada, valla

The first week of March has come to an end which means two things: autumn is coming & the school year has begun. Naturally, the education system is not immune to current political & economic problems in Argentina. Faced with less funding for schools & salary cuts, threats of striking teachers in half the provinces of Argentina had many people wondering if classes would be in session or not. Buenos Aires had no problems on the first day of class, but the strike was adhered to in seven other provinces. The following day, news media reported that most teachers in the country reported for work, & the story quickly disappeared from headlines. President Duhalde went to Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego to inaugurate the school year. Fortunately there were students and teachers present to listen to his public address!

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