Thursday, April 9, 2009

distrust of the man

i had a meeting with my boss this morning (more on that later. as always she deserves her own post).

something i found odd was that she told me to be careful of "dengue fever". when i told her that i heard about it, that the U.S. embassy here issued a warning but they, the media and newspapers all said that the people infected with dengue fever were all in northern argentina or vacationing in the north. no one has been infected in capital federal (the center of the city and it's close suburbs).

she said she doesn't believe the media or trust that the government is telling the truth. she said we'll only find out that it's in capital federal when a person from a rich neighborhood dies. then the media will know.
*capital federal is like the new york city of new york state. buenos aires is both a city (referred to as capital federal) and buenos aires is a province (like a state)

*dengue fever transmitted by mosquitoes. there is no vaccine.
this has been a reoccurring theme with my argentine students. more than half of them have made comments about how corrupt the government is. yes, people talk about how the u.s. government is corrupt, but not to the extent that people distrust here.

(for anyone who reads the history of argentina it's understandable why their people feel like this)


Conor said...

There is massive distrust of government statistics and reports by the government. Case in point is the "official"inflation statistics which have been manipulated by the Kirchner government so blatantly its laughable. Everyone else and economists would say that. For example official inflation was in single digits when everyone knew it was at least 25%. All economists in and outside Argentina know that Argentina is now in a recession but the "official" statistics dont. Where in industrialized countries such statistics are independent of the government (and to be fair they are kind of in Argentina) run by independent agencies its not in Argentina. Hence the massive distrust of statistics in Argentina.

Also dengue was found in Quilmes in Buenos Aires province last week. It's been "imported" by people traveling from the infected areas. So do watch out and the government are again misreporting the statistics to make the infection rate seem lower.

Yeah Buenos Aires is a province but the centre of Buenos Aires city is a federal district like Washington DC. It was split from the province after various civil wars with the provinces fighting over loads of things. Mainly other provices were not happy with the disproportionate influence Buenos Aires city and province (which at the time were one) wielded. So to appease all sides the city became a federal district. They built a whole new city called La Plata to be the capital of BA province. You should check it out. Its nice and look at it on Google Maps! It's so well ordered and planned out well!

Nicholas N said...

Err... come to think of it.. my head is a little warm...