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Evidence clearly demonstrates Latin America’s political systems transition to democracy. Though unstable, it’s long democratic history reveals progression from oligarchy, to semi-democracy, to an electoral democracy. Thus, with these three cycles of democratization trace the political changes that demonstrate Latin America’s consistent effort to implement electoral democracy.
Oligarchy, dominated Latin America’s political structure from 1900 to 1939. At the height of the European industrialization, Latin America became Europe’s main provider for raw materials. Mexico, for instance, provided Europe and North America with hemp, copper, and zinc. By 1910, Latin America was being integrated ever more strongly into the world of capitalist economy, given the role of “peripheral producer” of primary goods and consumer of industrialized goods from the developed nations at the center of the system. Hence, Latin American countries producing raw material in exchange for European manufactured goods, further, embedded the pattern of economic control by foreign countries. Thus this pattern already established due to colonialism, continued, and Latin America became more dependent on a foreign countries economy for its prosperity. However, in the minds of many political leaders, this new economic order was reasonable and endorsed, as a result of the growing dominance of liberal ideology in most parts of Latin America. In fact, due to the new ideology, throughout this phase of free trade, political parties were established.
Many political liberals who favored less centralized state rule formed liberal parties, while the traditional agricultural interests and pro church conservatives formed conservative parties. Moreover, as free trade was glorified because of its intrinsic worth, political leaders and foreign counterparts open their borders. This action was largely due to the ideological perspective of many Latin American political leaders, which viewed as abnormal to stand in the way of the economic and social progress that free trade would contribute to the prosperity of the state. With regards to local governments, conveniently took the opportunity to collect revenue from commercial trade which during colonial times had thrived illegally outside of their control. However as it would be expected, it was only a small percent, since only 5% of the populations benefited from the free trade agreements.

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asked by Christi
  1. Is this the Latin America I know? You have made a broad sweeping generality that has little basis of fact. Many, many folks will disagree with you on your conclusion. If you are going to make such an astonishing conclusion, you need to support it with facts. Why do countries in Latin America have those big armies?

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