New right, old ideas

brasilobserver - Jul 20 2015
Gloria Alvarez, Latin American new right’s star (Photo: Fernando Conrado)

(Leia em Português)

Conservative network from the United States finances young Latin Americans to fight leftist governments from Venezuela to Brazil and defends old flags with a new language


By Mariana Amaral – from Agência Pública

“The body is the first private property we have; it is up to each of us to decide what to do with it,” calls out in Spanish the blonde with a firm voice, while moving gracefully on stage at the Liberty Forum (Fórum da Liberdade, in Portuguese), adorned with the logos of the official sponsors – Souza Cruz, Gerdau, Ipiranga and RBS (affiliate of Rede Globo, Brazil’s biggest television network). The auditorium with 2,000 seats of PUC University in Porto Alegre, capital of Brazil’s Southern State of Rio Grande do Sul, is completely packed, and bursts into laughter and applause for the Guatemalan Gloria Alvarez, 30, daughter of Cuban father and descendant of Hungarian mother.

Gloria or @crazyglorita (55,000 followers on Twitter and 120,000 on her Facebook fanpage) rose to stardom between the Latin American right youth at the end of last year when a video in which she attacks the “populism” in Latin America during the Ibero-American Youth Parliament in Zaragoza (Spain) went viral on the Internet. In the main forum of the Brazilian right, Gloria and the former Republican governor of South Carolina David Bensley are the only ones among the 22 speakers, Brazilians and foreigners, scaled to the keynote – this year three days-event was baptized “Paths to Freedom”.

A radio broadcaster for ten years, today with a TV program, Gloria is a captivating woman. She easily leads the audience mostly made up of students from PUC, one of the best and most expensive Brazilian universities. “Those who are liberal or libertarian raise your hands,” she asks the audience, which responds with raised hands. “Oh, okay”, Her mission is to teach her ideological peers how to “seduce the leftists” and win over those “bearded ones with Che’s hat”, explains the young leader of the National Civic Movement (Movimiento Cívico Nacional or MCN, in Spanish), a small political organization that emerged in 2009 in Guatemala during the development of the movements that demanded – unsuccessfully – the impeachment of social-democratic President Álvaro Colom.

The first lesson is to use the hashtag created by her, “república x populismo” (republic x populism) to overcome “the obsolete division between right and left.” “An intellectually honest leftist must recognize that the only way out is employment, and the right-wing of the 21st century, who has been modernized, has to recognize that sexuality, morality, drugs are a problem of each individual; they are not the moral authority of the universe,” she continues, under a rain of applauses. No guilt, nor moral or social, she teaches. The message is individual freedom, “empowerment” of youth, low taxes, and minimal state – the platform of the liberal right (in economic terms) worldwide: “Wealth cannot be transferred, gentlemen, wealth can only be created from the little head of each of you,” she says. Similarly, Gloria rebuffed social assistance programs for the poor, policy of quotas for women, blacks, disabled and even the existence of minorities: “There aren’t minorities, the smallest minority is the individual, and what best serves them is meritocracy.”

“There is a truth that every human being should attain to have peace if one does not want to live as a hypocrite. We all, seven and a half billion human beings who inhabit this planet, are selfish. That is the truth, my dear friends in Brazil, we are all selfish. And is that bad? Is that good? No, it’s just the reality,” she says. “There are people who do not accept this truth and go with the wonderful idea: ‘No [imitating the voice of a man], I’ll make the first unselfish society’. Take care, Brazilians; take care of yourself, Latin America! These wise guys are like Stalin in the Soviet Union, as Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un in North Korea, Fidel Castro in Cuba, Hugo Chavez in Venezuela.” And “why we follow like little sheep” behind those “hypocrites”? Because [grimacing and speaking like an old lady] they “teach us it is ugly to be selfish and to think of ourselves in sin. How many of you have not seen someone say ‘ah, we need a good man who does not think only of himself,’” she says, curving up as she talk to then recover the proud posture: “Look, unless you are a Martian, this man does not exist, never existed or ever will exist.” Applauses.

But, she explains, the “defenders of freedom” also have their share of responsibility. They don’t know how to communicate their ideas, use technology to “empower citizens” and “liberate” Latin America. “If we discuss macroeconomics, GDP etc., we will lose the battle. We have to learn from populists to say what people understand,” she says. “And here I will give you more advice because they say we, liberals, we are explorers,” she quips. “I found a very beautiful way to define the concept of private property. And with this concept of private property leftists go ‘ooooooh!’”. Private property, she says, is what we accumulated in a lifetime, from our first property: body and mind. The past, she continues, is not the same for anyone, it is personal. “It humanizes us; it gives a little heart to us, liberals”. More applauses.

“There are people who want the right to health, education, work, housing. The UN now wants the universal right to internet”, she disdains, though she has just said that technology is the key to changing the world. “Imagine that in this auditorium, some want the right to education, the other the right to health, the other the right to housing. So if I give you education, everyone here will pay for it, and you will be VIP, and they second-class citizens. If I give you health, everyone in this auditorium will pay for their health, and you will be VIP. This is not social justice, it is inequality before the law,” she concludes, again accompanied with laughter and applauses.

“If everyone in Latin America is entitled to life, liberty and private property, then each of you go behind the education you want, the health you want, the house wherever you want to live without super-Chavez, super-Morales, super-Correa”. Ovation. Whistles. Before closing 40 minutes of exposure, Gloria invites those present to counteract the worldview that “victimizes Latin Americans”, “blames the Yankees”, undermines “self-esteem” and the courage to take risks requiring entrepreneurial spirit. The audience applauds, standing.



Rodrigo Constantino autographs books (Photo: Felipe Gaieski)

Rodrigo Constantino autographs books (Photo: Felipe Gaieski)

Gloria Alvarez does not represent anything really new. The big difference is the language. The MCN (movement to which she belongs) received “funds from some of the largest companies in traditional business elite,” says investigative journalist Martín Rodríguez Pellecer, director of the Guatemalan website Nómada. “I found from close sources that one of the industries that supports them for mass campaigns and lobby in Congress is Azucar of Guatemala, the powerful cartel of thirteen companies (Guatemala is the fourth largest exporter of sugar); and the Guatemalan plants have investments in plants in Brazil as well.”

The same can be said about their ideas. Despite the attractive title, the libertarians “are a minority segment within the political tendencies that gained influence in the post-war period to oppose the interventionist policies of Keynesian inspiration,” explains the economist Luiz Carlos Prado, of the Federal University in Rio de Janeiro.

From the oil crisis of the 1970s, pro-market economists as the Austrian Friedrich Hayek (Nobel Prize in 1974), monetarists from the Chicago School of Milton Friedman (Nobel Prize in 1976) and the new-classics associated to Robert Lucas (Nobel Prize in 1995) have come to dominate the global economic thought and became known to the general public under a single label: “neoliberal”. Their concepts were brought to Latin America by the most conservative sector of United States, represented mainly by think tanks linked to Ronald Reagan, who after losing the Republican Party primary in 1968 and 1976 was elected president in 1980 with Friedman as principal adviser. These neoliberal ideas also prevailed in the government of Margaret Thatcher (1979-1991) in the UK. “The defenders of classical liberalism were also advocates of political freedom, but the current called ‘neoliberal’ essentially advocated non-intervention in the economy without a particular concern with the issue of political freedom, reaching in some cases, to support dictatorships without such constraints like Pinochet in Chile,” says Luiz Carlos Prado.

Gloria Alvarez is a good example of how libertarians’ ideas are translated in Latin America. In 1971 “a very representative part of the Guatemalan economic elite assumed as political project the rightwing libertarianism, when they founded the Francisco Marroquín University (UFM, in Spanish),” says the journalist Martín Rodríguez Pellecer. “The founder of the university, Manuel Ayau, known as El Muso, referring to Mussolini, joined the fascist and anti-Communist project of the National Liberation Movement (Movimiento de Liberación Nacional or MLN, in Spanish). Since then, the UFM has been forming political and academic leaders to discredit the State and social justice and convert Guatemala in the country that collects less tax in Latin America (11% of the GDP) and that least redistributes,” he explains. It was in this university that Gloria studied and “became a libertarian much less conservative than their teachers, a mixture of neoliberals and Opus Dei. Alvarez is declared atheist and supports the decriminalization of abortion and, though she has become a star in the Latin American right, in Guatemala she is a minor reference to the right, has no political base and will not be a candidate. I see her more as an enfant terrible libertarian,” says Martín.

The libertarians resurfaced with force in the United States after the 2008 crisis – and the subsequent clamour for market regulation – and as a result of the Democrat Barack Obama’s rise to power. They preach the predominance of the individual over the State, the absolute freedom of the market, the unrestricted defence of private property. They claim the economic crisis that threw 50 million people in poverty was not due to lack of financial market regulation, but because of the government protection to some sectors of the economy. And emphatically reject the social programs of the Obama administration. However, a significant proportion of libertarians has distanced from the traditionalism of the right in behaviour matters, defending positions normally associated with the left, like drug legalization and tolerance to homosexuals in the name of individual freedom. Republican Senator Rand Paul, pre-candidate for president in the US, is one of their best-known representatives.

“The libertarians who are with the conservatives in the Tea Party (the right-wing radical current in the Republican Party) are in think tanks like the Cato Institute and comprise the postmodern right, represented, for example, by Cameron in England, who modernized the agenda of reducing the state’s welfare,” says Luiz Carlos Prado. He laughs when I speak about Brazilian libertarians, followers of the economics Austrian school of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek. “The Austrian school is a minority tendency even in the academy,” he says. “Who are these libertarians? What we have in Brazil are sophisticated economists who follow tendencies like the new-classics of Nobel Prize Robert Lucas and others, right-wing politicians like the little developed Ronaldo Caiado (Senator of Brazil’s Democrats Party) and the conservative middle class that reads Rodrigo Constantino in Veja magazine.”

Caiado and Constantino are veterans’ participants of the Liberty Forum in Porto Alegre. The novelty is the Tea Party libertarians have been able to present themselves as the inviting face of the right for the Brazilian youth.



Gloria Alvarez spoke to around 100,000 people in the Paulista Avenue in São Paulo (Photo: Reproduction/Facebook

Gloria Alvarez spoke to around 100,000 people in the Paulista Avenue in São Paulo (Photo: Reproduction/Facebook)

On the eve of the Forum, on 12 April, Gloria Alvarez spoke against the “evil populism” dressed in a sequined shirt forming the flag of Brazil to around 100,000 people in the Paulista Avenue in São Paulo, in the second round of demonstrations against the government of Brazil’s incumbent president Dilma Rousseff (Workers Party). From the top of the Vem pra Rua (Come to the Streets, roughly translating) truck, the leader of the movement, Rogerio Chequer introduced her to the crowd as “one of the greatest representatives of the battle against populism of the São Paulo Forum” and remained all the time at her side. Gloria, who had announced in advance their presence in the protests in an interview to Danilo Gentili on SBT television, had given a lecture at the Fernando Henrique Cardoso Institute, assisted by the former social-democrat Brazil’s president himself three days earlier.

Among those who led the protests in March and April against Rousseff’s government, the movement of Chequer was one of the last to take the impeachment flag. The Free Brazil Movement (Movimento Brasil Livre or MBL, in Portuguese), known mainly through the figure of Kim Kataguiri, had taken from the beginning the impeachment flag and publicly broke with Chequer, publishing pictures of him next to the Senator José Serra (Brazilian Social Democracy Party) in Aécio Neves campaign for presidency last year – branded as “traitor” by hesitation in asking for the impeachment of the elected president. They reunited after the commission of senators led by Neves and Ronaldo Caiado made its controversial expedition to Caracas.

Caiado was on the opening debate of Liberty Forum this year. Without the grace of Glorita, the conservative senator linked to the biggest farmers in Brazil drew applause from the audience with phrases against the corruption scandals that have the Workers Party at the centre, references to the São Paulo Forum, request of  Dilma Rousseff “resignation” and attacks to the BNDES (Brazilian Development Bank). Interestingly, the accusations of Caiado were made under the logos of Gerdau and Ipiranga – of the group Ultra – which are among the largest borrowers of BNDES loans according to data collected by Folha de S. Paulo newspaper. Both individually obtained more than one billion reais from the bank between 2008 and 2010.

The businessman from Rio Grande do Sul Jorge Gerdau is one of the creators of the Liberty Forum, which began in 1988 with the intention of promoting debates between various schools of thought. In its first editions, the Forum included the former president Lula, the former minister José Dirceu and the former governor Leonel Brizola (all of them considered leftists) among the panelists, without jeopardizing its identity as the primary conservative forum of the country.

It was there that, in 2006, the main think tank of the right in Brazil, the Millenium Institute, launched. Arminio Fraga (chosen to be finance minister of Aécio Neves if he won the election) is its best-known figure in the economic field. Its supporters are Gerdau, the publisher Abril and the Pottencial Seguradora, one of the companies of Salim Mattar, owner of the rental company Localiza. Suzano, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and the Evora group (of the Ling brothers) are also partners. William Ling participated in the foundation of the Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies (Instituto de Estudos Empresariais or IEE, in Portuguese) in 1984, which, made up of young business leaders, organizes the Forum since the first edition; his brother, Winston Ling, is the founder of the Liberty Institute of Rio Grande do Sul (Instituto Liberdade, in Portuguese); his son, Anthony Ling, is connected to the group Students for Liberty, who created the Free Brazil Movement. The manager of the Ultra group, Helio Beltrao, is also among the founders of the Millenium, although he has his own institute: Mises Brasil.

The network of liberals and libertarians think tanks in Brazil is completed with two entities: the Instituto Ordem Livre (roughly translating means Free Order Institute) – which holds seminars for the youth – and the Centro Interdisciplinar de Ética e Economia Personalista (or Interdisciplinary Centre of Ethics and Economics), from Rio de Janeiro, linked to Opus Dei. The jurist Ives Gandra, author of the controversial opinion on the existence of legal basis for the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff, is part of its council.

Like the Millenium, the vast majority of these institutes were recently created. The original seed was the Liberal Institute (Instituto Liberal, in Portuguese), created in 1983 by the civil engineer Donald Stewart Jr., who died in 1999. According to the doctoral thesis of historian Pedro Henrique Pedreira Campos, from the Fluminense Federal University, the Ecisa, Stewart Jr. company was one of the largest contractors during Brazil’s military dictatorship and Stewart Jr. joined the American Leo A. Daly to build Schools in the Northeast region of the country. The participation of US companies in the works was requirement of funding from USAID – the American development agency that functioned as the CIA arm during the Latin American dictatorships.

Donald Stewart Jr. also was an old friend of a crucial character in this story, the Argentine settled in the US Alejandro Chafuen, 61; both were members of the Mont Pelèrin Society, founded by Hayek himself in 1947 in Switzerland and headquartered in the United States, which brings together the most faithful libertarians. El Muso, the founder of the university where Gloria Alvarez studied, was the first Latin American to chair the Mont Pelèrin, and its current rector, Gabriel Calzada, is part of the board with Brazilian Margaret Tse, CEO of the Liberty Institute, the ideological support IEE. The current president of the Mont Pelèrin Society is the Spanish Pedro Schwartz Girón, sewer of think tanks linked to the FAES, the foundation of the Popular Party (PP) led by José María Aznar, who promoted the Ibero-American Youth Parliament, where Gloria Alvarez was catapulted to fame. Pedro Schwartz, Alejandro Chafuen and the Colombian Plinio Apuleyo Mendoza, co-author of the book “Guide to the Perfect Latin American Idiot”, a hit for the rightwing youth, attended the “Latin America” panel at the Liberty Forum. Chafuen also participated discreetly of the protests on 12 April in Porto Alegre. He did not resist, however, to post on Facebook a photo in which he appears dressed in the Seleção shirt embraced with the young political scientist Fábio Ostermann, from the coordination of Free Brazil Movement – name that assumed on the streets the Brazilian arm of the Students for Liberty group.

Ostermann, Juliano Torres and Anthony Ling are founders of the Estudantes pela Liberdade, the local version of the Students for Liberty, a key organization linking conservative American think tanks – especially those who define themselves as libertarians – and the “anti-populist” youth in Latin America. Chafuen, president of Atlas Network since 1991, is its mentor.

The Atlas Network (fantasy name of the Atlas Economic Research Foundation since 2013) is a kind of metathink tank, specialized in promoting the creation of other libertarians organizations in the world, with resources obtained from partner foundations in the United States and/or channelled from local business think tanks for training of young leaders, particularly in Latin America and Eastern Europe. According to the 990 form, which all charities are required to submit to the IRS (US Internal Revenue Service) Atlas’s revenue in 2013 was US$ 11.4 million. The resources allocated to activities outside the US were US$ 6.1 million: of which US$ 2.8 million for Central America and US$ 595 thousand to South America.

Apart of the Fernando Henrique Cardoso Institute, all organizations mentioned so far make up the Atlas Network connections in Brazil, including Gloria Alvarez’s MCN, Francisco Marroquín University and the Brazilian Students for Liberty, an organization that was born within Atlas in 2012. As we will see, besides the mentioned resources are much more sizeable projects funded by other foundations and executed by Atlas.



Alejandro Chafuen, from Atlas with Fabio Ostermann, from Movimento Brasil Livre during demonstration (Photo: Reproduction/Facebook)

Alejandro Chafuen, from Atlas with Fabio Ostermann, from Movimento Brasil Livre during demonstration (Photo: Reproduction/Facebook)

Juliano Torres, executive director of Brazil’s Students for Liberty (or EPL, in Portuguese), was clear about the connection between the EPL and the Free Brazil Movement (MBL), a brand created by the EPL to participate in street demonstrations without compromising American organizations that are prevented from donating funds to political activists by the laws of the American revenues service. “When the protests in 2013 by the Free Pass Movement happened, several members of EPL wanted to participate, but as we receive resources from organizations such as Atlas and Students for Liberty, due to the income tax there, they cannot develop political activities. Then we said: ‘The members of the EPL may participate as individuals, but not as an organization to avoid problems’. So we decided to create a brand, not an organization, it was just a brand for us to sell in the demonstrations as Free Brazil Movement. So Fabio [Ostermann], Felipe França and I joined, plus a four, five people, and created the logo, the Facebook campaign. And then the demonstrations happened, as well as the project. Thus we started looking for someone to take over; it had more than 10,000 likes on the page, pamphlets. Then we found Kim [Kataguiri] and Renan [Haas], who after all gave an incredible shift in the movement with marches against Dilma Rousseff and things like that. Kim is a member of EPL, so he was trained by the EPL as well. And many of the local organizers are members of the EPL. They act as the Free Brazil Movement members, but were trained by our people in leadership courses. Kim will participate now in a charity poker tournament organized by the Students for Liberty in New York to raise funds. He will be a speaker. And also at the international conference in February, he will be a speaker,” Torres said in a telephone interview.

Paid for his position in EPL, Juliano explians that he has two online meetings per week with American headquarters and that he and other Brazilians participate annually in an international conference, with expenses paid, and a meeting of leaders in Washington. The budget of the Students for Liberty in Brazil should reach 300 thousand reais this year. “The first year, we had about eight thousand reais, the second was 20 thousand reais. We get money from other external organizations too, such as Atlas. Atlas, along with the Students for Liberty, is between our main donors. In Brazil, the main donor organizations are the Friederich Naumann, who is a German organization, which are not allowed to donate money, but pay expenses for us. Then there was a meeting in the South and Southeast, in Porto Alegre and Belo Horizonte. They rented the hotel, accommodation, paid to the event room, lunch and dinner. And it has some individual donors who make donations to us.”

The foundation of the EPL in Brazil came after Juliano took part in a summer workshop for thirty students sponsored by Atlas in Petropolis, in 2012. “Right there we did a draft, a plan and then, later, we contacted the Students for Liberty to officially join the network,” he says.

After that, he went through almost every type of training in the Atlas. “There’s what they call a MBA, training in New York and also online training. We recommend to all people who work in positions of more responsibility to pass through the Atlas training as well.”

The results obtained by Brazilians have impressed the US headquarters. “In 2004, 2005 there were around ten people in Brazil who identified with the libertarian movement. Today, within the global network of Students for Liberty, the results that we have are very good. One way to measure the performance of regions is the number of local coordinators. In all regions, counting North America, Africa, Europe, we have more coordinators than any region separately. In the United States, the organization has existed for eight years; in Europe, four; here three. So, we are having more results in very little time.”

There are two Brazilians in the International Board of the Students for Liberty (out of ten members), and this year’s report devotes a page specifically to MBL outbreaks in Brazil. The Brazilian Elisa Martins, graduated in Economics at the University of Santa Maria, in Rio Grande do Sul, is responsible for the international programs for scholarships and training of young leaders in the Atlas Network.

The programs are carried out in partnership with other foundations, especially the Cato Institute, the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation and the Institute of Human Studies – foundations linked to Koch family, one of the richest in the world. Together, the 11 foundations of the Koch poured US$ 800 million in the last two decades in American conservative foundations network. Another important partner is the John Templeton Foundation, of another American billionaire. These foundations have much larger budgets than the Atlas and develop fellowships programs that come with money and Atlas, with the execution. An example of these projects is financing the expansion of Students for Liberty Network with funding from the John Templeton, closed in 2014 with more than US$ 1 million budget.

So even though it appears in third place among the funders of Students for Liberty, Atlas raises a much larger volume of funds for the organization through its partners. All major donors of Students for Liberty are also donors to Atlas. It is not always possible to know the origin of the money, despite the legal obligation to publish the 990 forms – delivered to the IRS. Conservative US foundations drain money by a large multiplicity of channels, which makes impossible to know what the original source of the money that reaches each of the receivers.

In addition, concerned about the surveillance they have on these projects as the Transparency Conservative and press, which have revealed a series of scandals involving the use of these resources for lobbying in Congress and state governments, as well as controversial causes such as the denial of global warming, in 1999 the foundations created two philanthropic investment funds – Donors Trust and Donors Capital Management – which do not require donors to have the name up on 990 forms. The Donors Trust is the largest donor to Donors Capital Management (and vice versa). The first is among the largest donors of Atlas, and the second is the largest donor of Students for Liberty. The Koch foundations are the biggest suspected of pouring money into these funds.

The 2014-2015 report of Students for Liberty shows an impressive collection of funds: US$ 3.1 million compared to only US$ 35,768 obtained in 2008 when the organization was founded. Of these, US$ 1.7 million came from foundations, according to the report that does not detail the amount donated by each institution. The Charles Koch Institute was in the report of Students for Liberty, but according to the form, it gives grants only to American students, while the Charles Koch Foundation, which gives grants to students in a number of foundations, is not mentioned in the report. The Institute of Human Studies (IHS) – another Koch Family Foundation – is a major contributor to the fellowship programs for students. Only in 2012 were distributed US$ 900 thousands in donations in accordance with the form submitted to the IRS.

Atlas is a major partner of the IHS. Fabio Ostermann, for example, coordinator of the MBL, says he was Koch Summer Fellow at the Atlas Economic Research Foundation. Ostermann is advisor to the deputy Marcel van Hattem (Brazil’s Progressive Party), pointed out by Kim Kataguiri as the only politician to fully embrace the MBL’s convictions. The young deputy, who was elected with grants from the Gerdau and Évora – of the father of Anthony Ling, founder of the EPL – has also attended courses at the Acton Institute University, the most religious of libertarians’ foundations that make up Atlas fellowship network and Koch Foundation. Among its principles is in the “sin”, for example, related in a unique way with the need to reduce the state.



The “hero” of the Forum, Kim Kataguiri, with the major sponsor of the debates held in Porto Alegre, Jorge Gerdau (Photo: Fernando Conrado)

The “hero” of the Forum, Kim Kataguiri, with the major sponsor of the debates held in Porto Alegre, Jorge Gerdau (Photo: Fernando Conrado)

The Liberty Forum, after all, ended as street demonstrations that preceded it: with shouts of “Dilma Out”, “Workers Party Out”. Marcel van Hattem made an exalted presentation, after thanking the forum for his mandate – “If I am deputy today, I owe to the Liberty Forum” – and made an interesting distinction between the manifestations of 2013 – multi-party and disorganized – and this year – “when we had an agenda”.

The program has been modified with the arrival of Kim Kataguiri, who did not appear as a speaker. He was embraced by sponsors such as Jorge Gerdau and Helio Beltrao, posed for pictures with several fans and, with his friend Bene Barbosa, who was launching a book for the liberation of firearms for every citizen, he went to the auditorium, again full of students.

Seated on the couch, Kim waited for Van Hattem to shred the usual accusations – against the Foro de São Paulo, the totalitarian power of the Workers Party and “the biggest corruption scandal of the universe” – tearing applause at every catchphrase. He also aroused enthusiasm showing his identification with the audience: “The avant-garde today is not leftist, it is liberal. The well-informed young hit the streets and ask for less Marx, more Mises. Enjoys Hayek, not Lenin.”

So Van Hattem left the pulpit and, walking across the stage, headed toward Kim. “The next step is up to you, but it’s hard. The Brazilian system is refractory to new ideas. Today, Kim, the communist deputy Juliano Roso called you a fascist,” he said. And finally: “I just want to conclude by saying that the streets are saying: ‘Workers Party Out’.” Applauses, screams. The audience sings in chorus: “ole, ole, ole, ole, we are on the street just to overthrow PT (Workers Party).”

It was the cue for Kim entry. Walking across the stage, Kim urged liberal institutes and said “let’s get out of our liberal bubble, our libertarian bubble, our conservative bubble and take the country.” “It’s time for us to take the left monopoly of the youth. We have to stop this image that those who defend the free market are that older ones defending the military regime. The opposition is us. We want to privatize Petrobras. We want the minimal state. Brasília will not abide the people. It is the people who will guide Brasilia”.

Three days after the Forum, Kim Kataguiri started his March for Liberty toward Brasilia, with dwindling membership, while Gloria Alvarez undertook a tour that would take her from Argentina to Venezuela reported effusively in their social networks. In Argentina, she went through Buenos Aires and the city of Azul, invited by the Rural Society of Argentina. In Tucumán, her lectures at the National University were organized by Fundación Libertad y Federalism, which has in its international council Atlas Foundation, the Heritage Foundation, Cato Institute, the Hispanic American Center for Economic Research, the CEDICE Libertad (Venezuela) and the Instituto Ecuatoriano de Economía Política (Ecuador).

All of these organizations are part of the Atlas Network, as well as other foundations that ordered the Glorita ride: Estudiantes pela Libertad (Bolivia and Ecuador), the CEDICE in Venezuela and the Fundación para El Progresso in Chile.

The most interesting episode of her trip, however, was not registered in her social networks, not even in Chilean newspapers. On 23 April, she and the Cuban blogger Yaoni Sanchez met with former conservative President Sebastián Piñera after they held talks at the Universidad Adolfo Ibañez in Viña del Mar.

The meeting with the former president – who is also the only picture they appearing together – was reported by twitter of the economist Cristián Larroulet, former Minister of Piñera with the caption “President Piñera with Yoani Sánchez and Gloria Alvarez, two examples of Latin American women fighting for freedom.” Larroulet is founder of the think tank Libertad y Desarrollo, obviously a partner of Atlas Network.