The Audacity of Prudence: A new sense of progress
-by Ernesto Ottone and Crisóstomo Pizarro-

translated by D. Ohmans
© copyright 2009

Text imprint Mexico City, Fondo de Cultura Económica, ©2003

     "Pessimism teaches us that in every case it is necessary to have,
     in place of a furious humanism, a modest humanism."


This book inquires into the situation in Chile and Latin America and attempts
to propose, or at least discuss, the tasks that we judge fundamental to obtain
a democratically organized, modern region integrated into the world which
ensures a future of reasonable equality and just liberty for its inhabitants.
     Chapters one and two situate the country in two contexts that we cannot
ignore: globalization and the new dimensions consequent upon the equality of
the dawning century. If these are considered, and attention is then paid to the
redefinitions of progressivism in the developed world (chapter three) and to
the challenges to the progressive project in Chile and Latin America (chapter
four) it is possible to advance certain propositions oriented towards a modern,
productive and reasonably stable democratic organization that ensures equity,
justice, liberty and equality.
     The authors are grateful for the valuable contributions to this book of
Carlos Vergara, Guillermo Campero and Javier Martinez, who participated
directly in the elaboration of many of its ideas.
     The authors thank their editor Óscar Luis Molina who was critical to
the quality of the edition.

                              I. GLOBALIZATION


We stand before a new era, an experience equivalent to that lived at the
appearance of industrial society. Ways of life and modes of work, of doing
business, of communicating, of forming families and communities, finally, all
the aspects of life--everywhere--change together with a velocity that often
makes it difficult to assimilate and adequately process the transformations.
     Languages and cultures become globalized. Communications permit economic,
social, political and cultural agents to act in real time with people
witnessing what happens anywhere exactly when it is happening. The concepts of
time and space and the ways of living them are contradicted. The effects span
the domains of human activity. A book by Giddens is a good example. It covers a
conference recorded by the BBC.(1) It has five chapters. The first and the last
were recorded in London, the second in Hong Kong, the third in Delhi and the
fourth in Washington D.C. All of them, furthermore, generated a fruitful
electronic discussion, via the Internet, from all areas.
     We participate in this process, globalization, with its evidence of a
universal nature. Nevertheless, every day we see that national communities live
these transformations in different fashions depending on their economic
development, their type of role in it, their culture and local tradition, the
strength or weakness of their institutions and of their civil society and their
degree of moral, social and national integration and the nature of their
ruling elites.
     Additionally the nature of the socio-political processes through which the
changes have been produced influences the traits that this phenomenon acquires.
It is not identical whether those processes occur in a context of pluralist
political democracy or in one of bureaucratic authoritarianism or in a
decidedly dictatorial one.
     All those factors result in that distinct national communities display
diverse social, political and cultural reactions according to the level of
opportunity, uncertainty or threat they subjectively or objectively perceive in
the process. Yet somehow, one can detect that there is a question of legitimacy
still not resolved in a universal and consensual manner. As in all epochal
changes, this corresponds to the feeling of uncertainty that accompanies the
social mutations characteristic of such processes.
     The expectation of new opportunities and the challenge of adopting
innovative behavior is combined with the progressive downfall of the known
"navigation maps," which for better or for worse decreed certain certainties or
routes to follow. The "modes of life and cohabitation" of the ancient social
order, with its advantages and limitations, are seen to be questioned. An
attitude of perplexity, and sometimes of opposition to what unfolds, tends to
spread through the most diverse sectors. Perplexity or defensive reaction
before the little known, before rules of the game not controlled, before the
uncertainty about the results.
     But at the same time individuals or groups appear who bet on the new
opportunities, risk innovation and assume the leadership of change, becoming
new ruling elites. Thus leaderships of change and of resistance intersect.
     Both types of leadership or of conduct are faithful expressions of the
magnitude of the changes and of their effects. Society finds itself in a search
phase, at once anxious and expectant of clues to shape an idea of what the
emergent social order will be. That causes this age to be rebellious and at the
same time open to debates, production of ideas and creation of a social and
political thought that identifies the coordinates, difficulties and
opportunities in the change and which, above all, formulates a vision of the
future that incorporates the preceding history and the possibilities of the
future. It does not attempt to delete the biography of the societies in the
name of a vague idea of the future. It attempts to move, from ideas and from
practice, into the new century, preserving and honoring its history, but
including it in the prologue of the future and not in an elegy of the past.


Change has been the characteristic of the 20th century; its speed that of its
last decade. Hundreds of thousands of years were needed for the world to attain
a billion inhabitants in 1800; only 130 years to arrive at two billion, in
1930, and only 30 to reach, in 1960, three billion. The world's population
today is estimated at six billion.
     In September of 1999, the prime minister of Sweden addressed the
Parliament: "Today are gathered in this hall the Parliament which will lead
Sweden from one millennium to the other. We deal with a symbolic event. The 40
generations who have lived here during the last thousand years have taken our
nation from the dark world of myths and superstitions to that of scientific
knowledge. In four generations industrialism flourished. In one generation
Sweden was computerized."

The division of labor

The division of labor has radically changed. The trend is toward growth of
employment in the cities, of non-manual labor, and of the emergence of women in
this market. Many more persons than ever, in absolute as well as relative
terms, are involved in education, training and employment. Many more are
independent contractors or work part time. "White collar" workers are a
majority and within this category the managers and professionals have
increased, particularly in the last decade.(2) In the case of Chile, in 1920
something more than 40 percent of the economically active population were
performing agricultural labor, and towards the end of the century that
proportion was less than 15 percent.
     It remains to mention the effects that the changes in the division of
labor have in everyday life. It suffices to consider, for example, the
consequences that women with paid work outside of the home can have on raising
the children, on the size of the family and on the nature of the inner
relations of the family.


According to the 1907 census in Chile there were 280 carrier pigeons.(3) It may
seem picturesque that until so recently means of communication would be used
that today seem so archaic. Furthermore, there are archives that establish the
quota of pigeons according to the size of the cities.
     During the middle of the 19th century, Morse transmitted the first
telegraphic message, which was sent without anybody transporting it physically
or materially. Perhaps that began a new phase in history. In 1999--150 years
later--Morse code disappears, on being discontinued as a means of communication
on the seas.(4) In its place satellite technology has been installed. The first
commercial satellite was launched in 1969 and today there are more than 200.
Instantaneous electronic communication is more than a faster mechanism for
transporting information. Its existence changes the physiognomy of ordinary
existence. Just seeing news on television places everyone, wherever we may be,
in front of everything.
     40 years were necessary for the radio to have an audience of 50 million in
the United States, but only 15, since the first personal computer was
introduced, for 50 million to use it in the U.S. And it only required four
years for 50 million persons to convert there to regular users of the Internet.

Globalization and the Nation state

Globalization is now a term in common usage. Beyond what different people want
to mean by it, the idea is always present that now things have existence and
meaning not only for the interior of a country. But globalization is more. It
has consequences everywhere. The global village, the global market, and instant
communications are more and more indifferent to territorial frontiers. The
effects of the Mexican crisis upon the New York stock exchange had a greater
effect upon the Chilean economy than any domestic political event. Every
general crisis demonstrates that nothing important which occurs in a large
economy, albeit distant, fails to have consequences for our countries.
     In the new economy, thousands of individuals, directors and corporations
transfer capital from one side to another with only a mouse click. World
transactions are traditionally measured in dollars. A million dollars is a lot
of money for any person. If one places hundred dollar bills one atop the other,
it would extend 20.32 meters high. A billion dollars would stack higher than
Saint Paul's cathedral of London. A "trillion" dollars (we use, a million
million dollars) would measure more than 118 miles in height (20 times more
than Everest). Considerably more moves the world financial markets in a single
day.(5) Enough to destabilize any economy.
     Economic stability depends not only on our own forces and rules, but also,
and to a determining degree, on that which occurs beyond the national borders.
The collapse of borders in the world of communications puts in check the
classical notions of a nation's cultural identity. Even more so, the form and
geography of our democracies depend more on the international political
community than upon the internal political forces of our societies.
     The frontiers of the Nation state that emerged in modern times as the
obligatory site of the political process are shaken today by the intensity and
speed of the changes taking place. The actual process of globalization by far
exceeds those of world internationalization implemented since long ago in
history and at certain moments it has had a commercial intensity comparable to
the latter and according to some even superior.

The new meaning of risk

The epochal change adumbrates the end of the logic of industrial capitalism.
And what best describes the industrial logic is the classical notion of
     Everything suggests that the idea of risk appears in the 16th or 17th
centuries. In the Middle Ages, or in previous cultures, there are no vestiges
of its existence. Seemingly, its origin is in navigation without maps,
practiced by the Portuguese and Spanish. The notion, then, refers to space;
later, with the appearance of the bank, investment and securities, it assumed
its temporal dimension, that of calculating uncertainty over a length of time.
To live in risk is to live in the future, the essence of classical capitalism,
the essence of the private risk of investing, lending money, contracting risk
premiums. The Welfare State itself is a complex system of administration and
distribution of risks and of protection against misfortunes in health,
employment, social security or age. Classical capitalism, or if you prefer, the
modern industrial society, is inconceivable outside of this idea, of its
calculation and its dimensions of space and time.

Globalization: opportunities, effects and problems

The actual changes have comprised, according to M. Castells, "a technological
system of systems of information, telecommunications and transport that has
rendered the whole planet into a net of flows wherein the functions and
strategically dominant unities converge in all domains of human activity"(7).
According to Felipe González, it is "a revolution in information and
communication between human beings, produced by the new technologies, that is
changing the relations of production, the structures of power, the basis of
industrial society and is generating a growing interdependence, however
imbalanced, at the same time as historically unknown opportunities"(8).
     In summary fashion, one can affirm that globalization introduces an
economy characterized by the extension of the financial markets, the importance
of the international market, the production of goods and services in
transnationals, and the globalization of scientific activities and
technologies. Productivity and competitiveness depend on the generation of
knowledge, the processing of information and the cultural dimensions of
persons, businesses and territories.
     These changes not only offer opportunities but also questions, unforeseen
problems and negative effects in the social, political and cultural life of
millions. Globalization generates interdependence and disequilibria, changes in
productivity, competitiveness and inequality among the nations.
     That has caused the perception that followed the fall of the bipolar
structure of the cold war, according to the political optimism of Fukuyama (9)
and the technological of Toffler, Naisbitt, Negroponte and Bill Gates to be
little sustainable today. After more than a decade since the fall of the Berlin
wall, the promises of peace and prosperity have been only partially fulfilled.
The democratic construction in the countries of the East still present not a
few questions, and on the economic plane the developed nations have been unable
to resolve problems such as unemployment. The dynamic of development in
countries under development present an enormous heterogeneity.(10) The indices
of poverty, misery and exclusion continue being very high throughout the world.
     On the political plane, a scenario emerges where globalization shares the
paradigm of liberal democracy with conflicts that respond to ethnic rivalries,
nationalisms and fundamentalisms which provoke confrontations with territories
that were a single country. New and old fanaticisms acquire grand dimensions
and generate uncontrollable situations. As Jean Daniel observes, "we direct
ourselves without witchcraft and without stars toward a worldwide future, but
we proceed among the most tumultuous convulsions"(11) that oblige us to
contemplate a fragile future, predestined neither towards progress nor
catastrophe, where prosperity, democracy and citizenship for all is as
difficult as "squaring the circle"(12).
     Taking the given situation into account, Alain Touraine has characterized
contemporary societies by a double process.(13) On one hand the dissociation of
the instrumental universe and the symbolic universe of the economy and culture.
On the other, by the existence of a diffuse power that is not motivated to
create a social order and which acts solely in the direction of change,
movement and the circulation of capital, of informational goods and services,
generating a political and social vacuum. Against this vacuum, many respond
with communitarian regressions which Touraine calls processes of
"demodernization." This tends to generate ever more fragmentary societies,
with modern elites involved in global interchange and, at the other extreme,
the excluded who navigate between social atomization and refuge in local,
regional, ethnic, lineage or religious traditions.
     In consequence, in contemporary societies new demographic disequilibria
are experienced with an inversion of the demographic pyramid in the developed
countries, tendencies toward loss of social cohesion, persistence of high
levels of unemployment, emphasis on income differences and greater
concentration of wealth. Also the mechanisms of integration of the industrial
societies lose efficacy for interfering with the intergenerational transmission
of inequality.
     According to M. Walzer, there are at least four mobilities that undermine
basic solidarity: the new occupational modality, which undermines class
solidarity; the geographical, which undermines the solidarity of the
barrio; family, which makes the nuclei of protection fragile; and the
political, product of the weakening of the parties, which undermines
ideological solidarity.(14)
     The foregoing represents new types of social differentiation, now not in
the vertical sense between those from above and those below, but instead
horizontal between those who are inside and those who are excluded from the
society, from the productive domain to the actual exercise of citizenship
(Touraine).(15) However, exclusion is not only seen in those who remain on the
margin of the system of opportunities. There also exists exclusion at the top,
of the elites who no longer need the public space to resolve their problems and
therefore generate their own habitat with private and self-sufficient systems
of health and security (Giddens).(16) The conjunction of these elements works
against the development of more united, equitable societies capable of sharing
a common citizen morality.
     Furthermore, globalization impacts the national society, at once
exacerbating the social divisions and their development of communication. The
migration of the connection to television fails to justify the price of the
products that are publicized. At the same time then, a culture of expectation
of consumption and another of frustration or sublimation can grow. Many feel
obliged to distract themselves with an ample menu of consumption symbolic of
another, more limited, one of access to material progress. There is a
development of options for symbolic gratification that is not supported by a
similar access to the benefits of globalization.
     As the news concerning global progress informs us, globalization strains
the role of the Nation state in at least two directions: a) in relation with
the trans-nationality of economic, environmental and human rights themes, among
others, which now cannot be treated in purely national terms and tend toward
regional or universal forms of organization, and b) within, in relation to the
distribution of power resulting from the emergence of local identities and
decentralizing impulses.(17)
     At the same time, on the universal level, the transformations in process
raise diverse questions for the democratic institutions and their functioning
in societies where information and the image play a central role. This
questioning touches the role of the political parties, the relation between
electors and elected, and the production of the political milieu.(18)

The debate over State and market revisited

A new idea about progress and progressivism should be identified by a
fundamental orientation: to assume the challenge of how, in view of the
profound changes happening, to reconfigure the relations between liberty and
equality, and the unity of social community with diversity and pluralism.
     The doctrinaire position called neoliberalism, which apparently imposed
itself during the Seventies and Eighties not only as a vision of economic
logic, but as a sort of comprehensive social philosophy, offered a drastic
judgment on what was called social constructivism, one of whose most faithful
expressions would be the Welfare State.
     To this was attributed, by neoliberal radicalism, an egalitarian logic,
supported by a "hypertrophied" State, which in the end would become incapable
of generating sufficient energy for dynamic development. Ahead of which
neoliberalism posited the logic of the market, free competition, individual
initiative and interest for wealth and profits, as the motor and the most
powerful locus to awaken and unleash personal creativity and, consequently,
that of societies. Thus was inserted into the common sense of the social debate
the State-Market antinomy, assigning the first a reduced and subsidiary role
and the second practically the equivalence with the notion of society. In this
way, the theme of the search for certain levels of economic, social and
cultural equality came to lack its own entity.
     It is enough to mention that in the post-War period this theme had been a
relevant part of thought concerning human welfare and the role of the State and
politics, not only in the West, but also in a great part of the world. Now, in
a logic of winners and losers, the possibilities of such equality seem the
result of the successful use of individual opportunities stemming from market
exchange and from chance selection of the most capable. Competition among
unequals, certainly: inequalities in the distribution of educational
opportunities, of access to information and technology, of endowment with the
spirit of enterprise.
     Otherwise, and associated with the above, neoliberalism also questioned,
although in a less direct manner, the collective aspect of societies,
understanding, according to the most drastic liberal tradition, that the
"communal," the societal would only be an exclusive derivation of the surrender
of individual sovereignty in the fields where personal enterprise cannot
succeed by itself. The State is always perceived as an entity that annuls and
saps individual energy. This reasoning suggests that the society understood as
market asserts that the State can only assume limited responsibilities; such
that a solid basis is lacking for its function of expressing the unity and
historical continuity of the society, as also its role in guaranteeing
collective rights.
     For the neoliberals, then, the articulation of unity and diversity in the
society, of the public and the private, does not seem to be a relevant theme,
to the point that can put politics and its institutions in doubt as
indispensable spaces for the expression of popular sovereignty, which instead
would have its place in the competition of the marketplace. In this scheme, the
notion of political democracy loses rank as against the liberty of choosing in
the market.
     The experience of the years following the Seventies demonstrated that this
perspective of ultra-liberalism did not seem to have sufficient cogency to
ensure reasonable conditions of equity in access to the benefits of growth nor
above all to avoid the generation of social differences. This in many instances
affected the cohesion, the social integration and the morally pertinent sense
of a true community. For that, together with recognizing the limits of social
constructivism and valuing the macroeconomic achievements accomplished, the
ideals of collective solidarity are maintained in full force, being valued as
intrinsic parts of a definition of human progress.
     Finally, there also emerged as a central theme in the debate of the
"golden years" of radical liberalism the question of how the material and
cultural globalization could combine virtuously with national identities,
enabling their possibilities and not invading them.


Numerous interpretations (20) have raised culture to a new centrality in the
analysis of reality and in the prefiguration of future scenarios. This
centrality acquires dramatic dimensions above all when it refers to the
collision between globalizing tendencies of modernization and the emergent
anti-modern (21) identity constructions that have spread in the Middle East, in
some Asian nations and in some territories of the ex-Soviet Union, and which
are present in one way or another on a world scale.
     All these identity constructions, however strong and conflictive they may
be, do not annul the processes of modernization nor are unaffected by the
universalist elements of the actual process of globalization. Rather, they tend
to generate, in processes that frequently turn bloody and traumatic, new forms
of equilibrium between the global and the local. For example in the case of
Iran (the most radical experience of radical identity construction) it tends to
generate a new remoteness of the elite with respect to the society, where
traditional ties reappear and a subterranean economy expands with new forms of
consumerism. What is more, the realpolitik of the regime has led to a
complex situation, where a discourse that demonizes the West coexists with
spaces of consumerist modernity.
     The anti-modern identity constructions are not the product of the world in
development or of post-communism. Nor are they necessarily opposed to the
framework of modernity; often they accept modernity's instrumental rationality,
questioning aspects of normative rationality, democracy, secularization, and
tolerance. Yet in general, in the great religious currents groups or positions
of reactionary orientation tend to acquire power, whose discourse opposes the
processes of secularization implied in modernity.
     The contradiction between modernization and cultural tradition does not
crystallize, however, necessarily in anti-modern identity constructions; it can
lead to situations of cultural westernization without technical modernization,
as in the case in many countries of sub-Sahara Africa, or of functionality of
the tradition for modernization, as in the case of Japan.
     In his Critique of Modernity, Alain Touraine proclaims: "We all are
embarked on modernity; but it is necessary to know if we do so as galley slaves
or as passengers with baggage, projects and memories"(22). Those are two
affirmations. One is the imperative character that modernity assumes: the
scientific-technological revolution, globalization of markets and
communications, and the presence of a competitiveness based upon the diffusion
of technical progress, have liquidated all dreams of autarchy; even Albania has
had to "de-albanize."
     The other affirmation that underlies the citation from Touraine is that
there is no single road towards modernity. The process can be a martyrdom,
since no one is a galley slave by choice. But it is of interest here to see how
the affirmative alternative can be pursued: to proceed with "baggage, projects
and memories," personality and identity. To consider such a possibility means
to understand cultural identity as a dynamic reality that endogenously re-
defines the changes imposing defensive visions which understand the cultural
identity of a nation or a group as an unmodifiable reality that can only be
projected as a repetition of a forever valid past.
     The defensive visions belonging to the anti-modern identity constructions
tend to avoid the real history. The latter demonstrates to us an incessant
modification of identities and a strong tendency toward interbreeding and the
"contamination" of cultures. Diverse examples could be brought together
concerning the cultural movements that were born at the margin of the dominant
cultures and generated cultural products today incorporated into the ways of
life of their countries or cities. The tendency towards cultural interweaving
is every greater. How could the Hispano-american and the Asian be
from the North American culture of today? This has led Eugene McCarthy to
affirm, from a defensive perspective, that "the United States has become a
colony of the World"(23).
     In synthesis, a conception of cultural identity that is neither static nor
dogmatic, and which assumes its continuous transformation and its historicity,
is an important part of the construction of a "substantive" modernity that does
not reduce to processes of instrumental rationality, productive efficiency and
unification by way of consumption. If instrumental rationality, productive
efficiency, technical progress, and the capacity to respond to aspirations for
consumption are indeed part of modernity, they do not guarantee the use of
valuable elements like the implementation of human rights, democracy,
solidarity and social cohesion, environmental sustainability, and the
affirmation of memories and historical projects.
     A reductionist reading of modernity that does not posit, in an integrated
and complementary manner, equity, sustainability, democratization, and
identity, will tend to reinforce incomplete modernization processes, destined
to produce enormous differences between integrated/ modern elites and vast
sectors of the populace, marginalized and fragmented. Such a mold will
reinforce processes of disintegration tending to entrench anti-moderns and
reactions contrary to development.
     The limited aspects of modernization are not only seen in developing
nations. They also appear in developed countries. Certainly, their major
intensity is manifested in regions of less development, where the phenomenon of
exclusion reaches vast sectors of the population and attaches to situations of
extreme poverty. There they can generate separate societies, with entrenched
modern elites confronting the excluded masses, and where the excluded shape
communities that do not submit to a national civic consensus but instead tend
to take refuge in traditional attributes - local, regional, ethnic, of blood,
and religious. In this situation, the communitarian aspect can feed world views
and cultural or ethnic fundamentalism that resists all integrative forces of
     A critical vision of modernity implies breaking the opposition between
rationalization and subjectivity, and between tradition and progress, and
searching for their complementarities and interactions. It tries to
simultaneously sustain the sense of a single world with the fragmentation and
rupture that the actual world presents. As Touraine suggests,(24) if one were
to measure modernity, she would have to consider the accepted subjectivity of a
society, because this subjectivity is not separable from an unstable
equilibrium between two opposite and complementary orientations: on one side,
the rationalization by which man is the owner and dominator of nature and of
himself; on the other, the personal and collective identities that resist the
powers which have put rationalization into effect.


"The territorial state, the nation and an economy circumscribed by national
frontiers formed an historical constellation in which the democratic process,
to a greater or lesser extent, could follow a convenient institutional form. In
the same fashion, the idea of a democratically constituted society, whose parts
can act reflexively within themselves as if they were a unity, has up to now
only made progress in the shape of the Nation state. This constellation is
being put into question by a series of developments that we know by the name of
globalization"(25). The acceptance of the idea which postulates that national
politics have no other option but to passively adapt to the imperatives of
globalization would deprive the actual political debate of "its last aspect of
     Habermas concentrates a part of his analysis on the changes having
occurred in the fiscal capability of the Nation state to generate resources
that permit its legitimation as the social State and the decline of the
principle of territorial jurisdiction and of autonomy, beyond the preservation
of internal order and the protection of the borders, this being the traditional
realm for the exercise of coercive power. The multinational effects of
decisions taken outside of the national frontiers and the motley architecture
of governmental and non-governmental international organizations explain in
part the diminution of the "sovereign" character of the Nation state. It is
also necessary to consider that the cultural communitarian substratum on which
the idea of the nation is based has today become more complex and dynamic:
societies relatively homogeneous from a cultural point of view have been
transformed into "multicultural societies." The idea of a homogeneous society
should give way now to a "constitutional patriotism," which supposes a far
greater level of abstraction and universalism than the older legal citizenship,
arisen from a community with a supposedly common origin. In multicultural
societies, equality can only be guaranteed through the recognition of cultural
rights. With that "the substantial idea of the nation as a community with an
historically common origin is undermined"(27). "If this does not bring about
the undoing of the historical symbiosis between classic republicanism and
nationalism, and locate the pro-republic convictions of the population upon a
new basis that represents the patriotism of the constitution," one cannot
contemplate the formation of new collectivities, due in large measure to the
exhaustion of the "reserves of civic solidarity"(28). Here we only highlight
the new difficulties of the Nation state in the exercise of its fiscal
function, the legitimation problems that this brings with it, and the proposal
for a political initiative governing globalization according to the rationality
of the lived world (personality, society and culture).(29)

The social state and globalization

     The capacity of the Nation state to generate resources stemming from
private enterprise has deteriorated even more by the rapid mobility of capital,
the flight of capital and the tough competition of the national economies to
"maintain competitiveness" in the global economy. (In the countries of the OECD
the income from utilities has been reduced and that of consumption and ordinary
rents, including salaries, augmented).(30) As was argued previously, to
counteract the logic of the capitalist economy, the modern State should have
intervened in the economy with the goal of sustaining a social State
legitimated by a mass democracy. In the notion of the social State we have
highlighted not so much the regulatory functions as those referring to their
redistributionist politics, in which can be included those referring to the
labor market, youth, the protection of nature, the family, as well as classic
social politics in health, education and housing. The dismantling or weakening
of budgets dedicated to social politics have also made the requirements for
access to systems of social security more prohibitive.
     Another notable fact implicit in the foregoing, and certainly associated
with globalization, is the immense difficulty for the economy and the State in
creating favorable conditions for full employment. In this context, Habermas
emphasizes that "under the pressure of global markets, national governments
lose in a marked way the capacity to influence the economic cycle." This fact
will be putting an end to the political Keynesianism limited to the territorial
State. "Keynesianism in one country is no longer possible"(31). In
transnational liberalism, industrial production "has adapted to the necessities
of flexibility"(32). The competition between nations impinges
on the rationalization of the productive process with its respective negative
impacts upon employment and on the unions.
     The global market becomes independent of national politics generating a
displacement of power towards the multinational corporations. This, in the last
analysis, is best explained by the predominance of the coordinating medium
"money" upon the coordinating medium acting in the political system itself, the
medium, "power"(33).
     The Nation states can be seen as compelled to integrate themselves with
the rationality of the global market. Prominent therein is the case for
deregulation. Nevertheless the market will only be able to correct itself
through a larger and more effective coordination of "the fiscal, social and
economic fields"(34). This will be an advance in the sense of a positive
reaction to globalization. The global market requires secure jurisdictions in
the Nation states as a guarantee of contracts and property rights, and
deregulation in the financial markets, infrastructure and services, as much as
macroeconomic stability and in general the existence of "the best conditions
for the valorization of capital"(35). This adaptation of the Nation states is
not the same as saying that they would be disposed to and are capable of
adopting corrective measures for the market, influencing redistributive
processes,(36) nor that they are competent to regulate the way in which
competition between nations occurs. There still are no accords for taxes
covering speculative transactions.(37) It is more difficult to mark a common
consensus for national tax laws.(38) The procedure of deregulation with the
goal of reducing costs "conduces to obscene gains and drastic differences of
incomes, to an increase in strikes and to the social marginalization of an ever
wider population"(39).

"Openings and closure" in constant movement

"The public forums of the western world are dominated by a profound refusal to
shape social relations according to political criteria, as by an abandonment
of normative points of view in favor of the inevitable, systematic, imperative
assumptions of the world market"(40) Confronted by "supposed impotence before
the process of globalization" and its destructive impact on the life world--
personality, society and culture--Habermas proposes a politics "of openings and
closure" in constant movement. "The necessary result is...sensitivity to an
authentic equilibrium between openings and closure"(41).
     To approach the "challenges of globalization" in a "rational manner," it
is necessary to develop new forms of democratic self-government for the
society. Following a critical analysis of the European Union's advances,
Habermas postulates that the "political response" to "an economically runaway
world society will only be possible if the powers who can act globally, in
relation to issues like the maintenance of social standards and the suppression
of extreme social disequilibria, introduce institutionalized procedures towards
the formation of a transnational political will. They should be willing to
widen their perspective of the national interest until arriving at the
viewpoint of a global governance.(42) That means that governments decide
to enter "within cooperative procedures of a cosmopolitan community. Innovation
cannot take place if the elites do not also express an echo of value judgments
previously shaped by the people." These values will represent "a cosmopolitan
conscience, up to a certain point a cosmopolitan consciousness of obligatory
     The projects for a cosmopolitan democracy suppose a compatibility between
"the pursuit of self-interest and the realization of political liberty"(44).
That will be possible when it is understood that "the democratic process"
obtains its legitimacy from general accessibility to a deliberative process
whose structure justifies the expectation of rationally acceptable
results"(45). In this case the legitimating force does not depend "primarily,
or only, upon participation and expression of will"(46). Although these
conditions do not completely replace "conventional processes of decision and
representation," they displace the center of gravity...from the incarnation of
sovereign will in persons, elections and votes to the procedural exigencies of
communication and decision. In this way the conceptual link is loosened between
the forms of legitimation and the known state forms of representation.(47)
     The formulation of this perspective necessarily should involve citizen
governments, citizen movements and "political parties that have not retired
from the totality of civil society to entrench themselves in the political

          LATIN AMERICA:

In the contemporary history of Latin America, and also in that of Chile,
considerable obstacles to crucial aspects of modernity persist.(50) It is true
that in the first half of the Nineties advances were achieved towards goals
like the establishment of pluralist political systems and the gradual taking
root of democratic and tolerant cultures in the majority of the nations, and
toward the realization of a notable effort to reorient the development strategy
and better insert it in the world economy, elevating the quality of the
macroeconomic agenda and recovering, if only modestly, economic growth. But
such advances today are made very fragile and in some cases reversed by the
negative cycles of the world economy and the internal crisis of various
     In consequence, marginalization, exclusion, poverty, extreme poverty and
inequality persist in Latin America. In a scene characterized by these problems
a great effort is expended to rethink development, attempting to close the gap
between "intensive modernization" and "frustrated modernity." The integrating
mission of this effort is evident, for example, in the proposal for productive
transformation with equity that the CEPAL had elaborated at the beginning of
the Nineties. In a more culture-values sense, that can be understood as a
critical perspective to access modernity, in which it is sought to reverse the
persistent sponsors of social, economic, political, and cultural exclusion that
a large part of the national societies of the region have suffered. Animated by
a pluralist mission for the cultural, democratic for the political, dynamic for
the productive and integrative for the social, it attempts to lay a basis for
an integrated perspective of development.(51)
     The central idea of this proposal for productive transformation with
equity is that the incorporation and diffusion of technical progress constitute
the fundamental factor so that the region shall develop a competitiveness that
permits it to enter into the world economy and ensure a constant growth. To
situate competitiveness in the incorporation of technical progress, it is
sought to transcend the rentier spirit that has prevailed in our
historical way of joining the world markets; now one does not try to base
competitiveness on low salaries nor in the abuse and the depredation of natural
resources. Such forms of spurious competitiveness not only have been
concentrative and exclusive in the past, but instead today operate in
opposition to any strategy of development sustained into the future.
     An authentic competitiveness supposes counting on human resources
in good condition, with the capacity to add intellectual value and technical
progress to the base of natural resources, reinforcing and enriching them. The
passage from a spurious competitiveness to an authentic competitiveness
simultaneously requires and reinforces a systematic focus on the
productive process. In other words: if the enterprise is indeed a central
element in the diffusion of technical progress through the productive
apparatus, international competitiveness will be found through the "functioning
of nations," including from the scientific and technological infrastructure to
the quality of labor relations, the educational system and the levels of social
     In this systematic focus, the theme of equity acquires new meaning. It now
not only is sustained by value principles and by the necessity to consolidate
democracy with greater social integration: it seems functional for leaps in
productivity, acquiring substance in the economic arena. There is no
sustainable development if it is based only upon low salaries; sooner rather
than later the economic performance will point out the incongruity between the
necessity for human resources capable of incorporating technical progress and a
poor population with a low level of attainment.
     This focus can be linked, in cultural terms, to a concept of modernity
that surpasses the limits of instrumental rationality and which breaks the
blockade imposed by cultural particularisms withdrawn into themselves. In this
sense, it expresses a critical vision of modernity: it tries to reconcile
individual liberty and modernizing rationality with the communitarian
     To avoid this contradiction it is indispensable to negate the negation of
the other, established in our history and that begins with the discovery, is
prolonged with the Conquest, the evangelization and the colonization, and does
not cease with the transition toward republican States nor in the discontinuous
dynamics of modernization attempted by our society. This dialectic of negation
of the other is founded on cultural negation (of women, the peasant, the urban
margin, etc.) and constitutes the cement for a long tradition of socioeconomic
exclusion and socio-political domination.
     The asynchronous character of a slow tendency of the processes of socio-
economic integration promoted in effect by the productive transformation and
social rationalization, and a more intensive integrative tendency in the
symbolic and cultural level (by way of the political democratic and industrial-
cultural opening) during the next years would comprise an important thematic
nucleus in the struggle for the citizenry in a large part of the region's
     This creates the need to build human resources in the poorest families so
that their children increase their productive output in adult life, and also
construct from the foundation of development (in children and youth) a
consciousness of themselves as participants in a collective development
process. Formal education and, in a more general sense, the diffusion of
knowledge and skills to assume the challenges of productive modernization,
today constitute the inflection point in which the negation of the other can
reverse or ameliorate. The so-called "knowledge society" means that the
diffusion of knowledge represents an axis for the construction of a populace
where the other can be an equal.(52)
     The Latin American region since its founding has been a motley
intercultural fabric, a recurrent act of intercultural co-penetration or
"active assimilation" of the culture of modernity out of its own historical-
cultural heritage. The importance of this cultural trademark has been decisive
for the pathways that modernity has taken in Latin America. And an ambivalence
underlies the imagination of this modernity. Because when so often we have
wished to interpret modernity as the surpassing of all exclusive particularism
or like a species of "thorough westernization," we thus have turned our back on
the element most related to ourselves: the capacity to dynamically integrate
cultural diversity in a shared social order. So then, the cultural variable
also seems unavoidable if one wishes to consider a public beyond the empty and
rhetorical forms that have limited it historically. Unavoidable also, if one
wants to activate endogenous energies and mobilize the social arrangement
towards productive development with greater levels of social equity.

Some orientations towards a harmonious vision of development and

The previous pages posit the necessity of incorporating cultural consideration
into the economic development project and of the construction of modern
citizenship, inclusive and extended.
     To this degree, a cultural force that advances the consensus for a
development orientation, and which in turn allows incorporating into that
orientation the values and identities of our societies, should consider at
least four prerequisites of high "systemic" effect.
     In the first place it is required that education and transmission of
knowledge be linked to the construction of a modern citizenry through the
diffusion of an entrepreneurial ethos concerning the arrangement of society,
with everything adapted to the possibilities and cultural and economic profiles
of each nation.
     In the second place, the construction of an extended citizenship requires
of politics that, adapted to the national contexts, there be promoted an
institutional culture based on contracts, norms of conduct and rights shared by
the actors involved (institutions, individuals). A consensus exists between
development agents and social analysts that cultural values affect institutions
and thereby are decisive for the behavior of the economy.
     From that it follows that the incorporation, from basic education and on a
massive scale, as much of a creative relation to instrumental rationality and
the productive processes as of a socialization in values and behavior which
strengthen the sense of citizenship and of juridical-democratic legitimacy.
Such socialization is not restricted to basic education, but instead should be
spread through a net of training, adult and vocational education institutions.
     In the third place, recommended is a politics of recognition, promotion
and integration for the sectors that suffer triple exclusion: cultural
discrimination; socioeconomic exclusion; and marginalization of the mechanisms
for representation and political participation. Such a politics should permeate
initiatives for integration, on the symbolic plane (through the participation
of those sectors in the decision-making system, above all on a local scale) and
on the material plane (through promotion of productive, communitarian
activities and the empowerment that strengthens competitiveness and the
organization of the excluded sectors). These actions could count on political
support from those activated by national pacts for the overcoming of poverty.
     In the fourth place, to expand the margins of endogenous development,
development and consolidation of a locally derived cultural industry today
occupies a strategic place. The cultural industries cannot disappear for
simple lack of comparative advantages. It should be assumed, in order to
elicit effects of mobilization and cooperation, that "without cultural
industries a national culture does not exist and in that sense the production
of economic, financial, juridical, and organizational items that promote the
development of such industries should be adopted"(53). The strategic character
of the cultural industry for endogenous development is threefold. First, for
the dynamism of that industry towards the general dynamism of an economy today
called modern. Second, by the strategic character, in a competitive economy of
globalized markets, of efficient access to knowledge and information. Third,
because the cultural industry is ever more important for the stimulation or de-
stimulation of the national cultures.
     Separate from these political orientations, all cultural politics will
have to integrate and conform itself to the changes of emergent information
societies. In the end, cultural politics (or the politics of systemic impact
that dwell on the cultural dimension) shall in turn promote maximum
flexibility, creativity and adaptability at the roots of those emergent
societies, namely: communication (linked to the cultural industry, the cultural
market and the mass media); management (ever more tied to interactive nets of
information); and consumption (adapted to the needs and cultural models of our
     We engage, as summary, in assuming a systemic vision of the relations
between economy and culture: to recognize that the cultural values and
practices affect the institutions and the behavior of the economic agents, and
that the dynamic of the economy affects, in turn, the possibilities for a
cultural construction compatible with and geared to the challenges of

Democracy today

The end of the Cold War and the gradual democratic restoration throughout the
world positively affected the region, giving legitimacy to democracy. Yet this
consolidation was primarily a consequence of the region's own development. At
the basis of said process are the lessons learned on the effects of the absence
of mechanisms to resolve social and political conflicts in a regulated manner,
which intensified and resulted in confrontations that shattered the
institutional system and led to the coronation of military dictatorships or to
experiences of civil war and systematic violence.
     These experiences brought the political, social and economic actors to a
political-cultural change favorable to generation of basic consensuses for
regulating conflict through negotiation and compromise and preventing
confrontation and the logic of war. The above led to a revision of the rules,
the institutions and democratic procedures and to a higher valuation of and
respect for human rights.
     If indeed this democratic consolidation of the political regimes has not
been immune to avatars, today acceptance of pluralism predominates, and the
sharing of power, division of the State's powers, the election of authorities
as the basis of legitimacy, the majority principle with respect for minorities,
as well as attention to and respect for human rights.
     As another aspect "Latin America is also the scene of the complex process
of transition towards the information and knowledge society, one of whose
consequences is that the advances and setbacks in economic and social matters
are viewed by the citizens through a new prism comprised of contrasts,
expectations, frustrations, new questions, and behaviors which that
communicational opening has tended to construct"(54).
     That has generated doubts about the functioning of democratic institutions
in societies where information and imagery are central. These doubts have a
global character, reaching the role of political parties, parliament, the
relation between electors and elected, and the sense of political activity
     In effect, there seems to exist a tendency, albeit not lineal, towards
the decline of the vote in modern democracies and a lesser meaning for
elections a determinants of the politics of the elected authorities.
Increasingly elections seem mere selectors of directing teams who rarely are in
a position to apply a governing program, for they find themselves overwhelmed
and driven by the economic and social situation.
     The problems mentioned explain why the studies that measure perceptions
about democracy show that it continues to be preferred, but that the levels of
satisfaction are lower when one refers to its efficacy in responding to
demands.(56) It seems evident that there is a disjunction between the
perception of the public--particularly middle, lower-middle and lower sectors--
of the size of its burden and its sacrifices to contribute to development
versus the slowness in the enjoyment of the benefits which appear
providentially provided.
     To these obstacles are added phenomena like the criminal economy generated
by narco-traffic and corrupt practices in the political system's functioning.
Similarly, security problems have increased, and that causes difficulty for
civil governments in controlling political and judicial issues while respecting
human rights at the same time.(57)
     All the foregoing is accompanied by the perception of a sterile
bureaucratization of rights (58) that leads to low civic density and is
expressed with inequality in access to justice in relation to agents of the
State and with the world of private capital. The perception, in sum, if of the
existence of non-transparent rules of the game, where now the counterweights of
the past (parties, unions) do not exist with equal vigor, however restricted
and corporate they were, and where there is no other form of protection than
individual strategies of survival.


Never had the relations between the concepts of citizenship, social cohesion
and equality appeared with such strength in the sociological literature, in
political debate and in the agencies of cooperation for development. It is not
accidental: we live in a world where cohesion and social equality are in check
before globalization tendencies and those of the third industrial revolution
(1); and the "democratizing mission" of that globalization, against de facto
regimes of discrimination, puts the theme of citizenship on the table.
     Yet there is a contradictory relationship between those terms. On one hand
citizenship becomes the theme of the day: modern democracy is accompanied by
strong normative human rights. One could say that it tends toward an extensive
ordering of citizens. But the same does not occur in the matter of social
cohesion and equality, where the futurologists extrapolate existing tendencies
and project a somber future of technological unemployment, weakening of social
ties, fracture of the Nation state, and increase in the incursion of taxes.(2)
     On the other hand, in the field of citizenship important redefinitions
emerge, derived from the combined phenomena of globalization and the third
industrial revolution. The age of the global village, as McLuhan
prognosticates, advances the knowledge-information component in the economy;
the politics becomes determinate and imposes another image of the public; the
fluidity of the circulation of money, information, images, and symbols dilutes
the idea of nation or of national frontiers, and material (goods and services)
and symbolic consumption (of knowledge, information, images, icons) gain space.
Given these conditions, it is clearly seen that we are passing from identity
based upon work and production to an identity based on consumption and
     All of these changes alter roles, habits and desires, and also ways of
exercising citizenship now not restricted to constitutionally sacred rights and
duties, but instead expanded to daily practices like remote work, the use of
information for personal or group achievements, the redefinition of the
consumer and her rights, and the use of common space to bring an actor to face
the other actors.
     The promises of remote interaction and of infinite information
paradoxically coexist with the tendency to exclusion, to the loss of cohesion
and to inequality in the national societies, with an increase in the gap
between the productive resources of industrialized countries vis-à-
vis nations in development. Social and economic rights have difficulties
being materialized in real compromises between the State and the society, above
all with the collapse of the Welfare State in Europe and its partial replicas
in nations under development.
     Meanwhile, globalization carries a great consciousness of differences in
cultural identity, be this because it suffuses the media of communication, be
it because there are cultures that react violently before the wave of "world
culture" and generate regional conflicts which in turn fill the scene. Thus
pressures and deeds expressing cultural affirmation increase, and the demands
for social and economic rights collide with labor markets pinched by the "goal
of Fordism" but also by the adjustments of national economies open to the
     Also, with the Soviet collapse and the hegemony of neoliberalism, we are
finishing two decades of the depreciation of equality as an ideology and as a
value. After the Cold War and following a model claiming to be unique, the
banner of equality loses strength, the imperative of human rights is weakened
and a normative idea of liberty tends to impose itself on whose altar all
redistributive state intervention may be immolated. The civil rights of
autonomy confronting power thus seem incompatible with social rights, which
require State intervention. The very idea of the Welfare State acquires infamy
against the ideal of the free economic subject and of possessive individualism.
The principle of indivisibility of rights thus is battered by deeds and by
     This tendency might be moderated by its negative effects on social
cohesion. But the loss of cohesion not only follows recent trends towards
massive unemployment, the exclusion of intellectual life, the salary gap and
concentration of wealth. There are other tendencies that erode social cohesion:
occupational mobility, which undermined group solidarity; geographic mobility,
which undermined barrio solidarity; family mobility, which undermined
the protective nuclear family; and recent political developments that seem to
generate a wave of citizen "disaffection" with the political system.
     To advance in third generation rights (economic, social and cultural) as
well as social cohesion and equality does not imply a return to pre-modern
communitarianism. Globalization advances with the third industrial revolution
and a retreat appears unthinkable. One must consider the complexity imposed by
a global ordering and an interdependence in which money, goods, information,
and shares of all kinds circulate rapidly. Regarding the complexity that such
circulation brings about, the challenge is to transcend the fragmentation and
lessen the social gaps through forms of cohesion and equality that are also
     A thesis in vogue is that if not only civil and political rights are
embodied as inalienable, but also the economic, social and cultural then
advances can be made towards greater social integration and equality. It is
argued that the call for "more citizenship" not only seeks to ground them in a
mediated world and a knowledge society, but also to re-submit the idea of
citizenship carrying inalienable rights. Along these lines it seems feasible
to provide an ethical foundation to the social politics of development that
conforms to economic, social and cultural rights.


In modern democracy citizenship has been understood as the possession of
inalienable rights of the subjects comprising political society and as dutiful
obligation and respect for the rights of others. The so-called civil rights
limit the action of the State and guarantees the liberty of persons in matters
of their exclusive sovereignty. Citizen rights also include the right to
political involvement, delegating representation or competing for political
power. Thus human rights were extended from fundamental liberties to the right
of suffrage, to elect and be elected to positions of political representation.
Also and as an expression of human rights modern legislation includes rights
called economic and social. We also observe a growing consciousness concerning
the importance that should be granted to rights related to development and free
expression of cultural life. Those rights reflect values of equality,
solidarity and non-discrimination. By virtue of these and as an expression of
universal, indivisible human rights interdependent with the civil and the
political, the citizenry can come to effectively enjoy basic rights of a
social, economic and cultural character. Among those have been recognized and
consecrated, among others, the rights to work, to an adequate living standard,
to health, nutrition, clothing, housing, education, and social security.(3)
     Economic, social and cultural rights impose the impetus of politics on the
State to promote them among those who do not have them. The State decides and
then regulates the necessity of increasing, redistributing and organizing
resources in the most efficient manner, above all to the benefit of groups or
persons who, because of their unequal and disadvantaged conditions of social
insertion, have the fewest possibilities of using them. To achieve the full
application and universality of economic, social and cultural rights in
national societies, the State tends to seeks forms that reduce original
inequality and the dynamics which reinforce it.
     Citizenship rights, considered in their totality, constitute a limit to
the authority of the State and to the action of the market. In the first case,
because civil and political rights prescribe inalienable fields of autonomy
(which should not be subjected to the coercion of the State) and also prescribe
rights of participation and representation in political life. In the second,
because economic, social and cultural rights proscribe levels of inequality
that the market, in its free functioning, can generate or strengthen, where
those inequalities inhibit the full exercise of those rights in the sectors
least favored by market dynamics.
     "Social citizenship" is not secondary in relation to civil citizenship or
political citizenship. From the ethical point of view rights are indivisible
and not hierarchical. In practice, social citizenship can promote a greater
exercise of civil and political rights. To the extent that economic, social and
cultural rights prescribe, as a state duty, the promotion of greater
integration of work, education, information, knowledge, and of safety nets and
social interaction, they permit improving citizen capacity to participate in
political institutions, in public dialogue, civil associations and cultural
     In synthesis, if citizenship is defined by the possession of that set of
rights, a society of citizens implies a limit to coercion and inequality. Civil
and political rights require the rule of the State of Law and forms of
participation and political representation that permit options to all who wish
to participate in public life and the decision processes. Economic, social and
cultural rights, on the other hand, depend for their realization upon the level
of social well-being that can be achieved according to the average productivity
of a society and the capacity of the State to focus, directly or indirectly,
upon the division of resources.
     There are three considerations that better situate the actual challenges
of the citizenry in relation to equality. The consolidation of democracy,
together with the necessity of "relaunching development," grants special
importance to political settlement among the diverse actors to confront the
future, with projects of sustainable development. The power of this idea of
settlement places priority on second generation rights, which equip one to
participate in decisions and projects coming from politics and the State. Yet
at the same time, the limitations of "settlement" are clear if it tries to
incorporate at one table of public dialogue sectors which do not "add on" their
demands nor operate with the new "logics" of politics and public
     If the institutionalization of democracy tends today to revolve around
widespread settlement, this contrasts with the lack of public presence and
access to decisions of an important part of the population. Sectors
marginalized by productive development, peripheral in the territorial net and
not representable by the political parties, do not accede to public dialogue.
     On another side, movements emerge that are new ways of reclaiming rights
and exercising them. The more social movements of groups who do not accede to
the power of the State nor feel represented by the political system link to the
populace, the more they affect the public space: the resonance of these
movements is greater if their message relates to reclaiming postponed rights,
which may be rights to land, justice, language, public transparency, or social
protection. That is the case with the movements for human rights and the
"disappeared," marches against hunger and corruption, movements against
discrimination and the abuse of women and children, etc.
     Secondly, unequal access to justice according to social condition also
creates a problem of human rights and has multiple facets: the lack of citizen
confidence in the organs of justice, protection and security; deteriorated
prison conditions and the delays in penal processes; the lack of access to a
just defense for youth of low income and, in many cases, their state of
permanent arrest due to delays in the process, and the perception of impunity
that is held regarding certain sectors whose offenses range from the violation
of human rights to that of corruption and narco-trafficking.
     In this the youth of working populations constitute a vulnerable segment.
Variation in age, sociability and the precariousness of access to justice lead
them to perceive fourth-class citizens. And a reaction occurs of skepticism
regarding the equanimity of the judicial system, with the related behaviors:
transgression of the law, the search for "shortcuts" to procuring what is
needed, re-socialization in the culture of crime, taking of justice into one's
own hands, etc. The disruptive effect that this aspect causes is clear.
     The third consideration is that pending issues in the matter of equality
of social rights and opportunities for all do not impede new forms of
citizenship emerging in communities of "information," of "management" and of
"computerization." In this viewpoint, exercise of citizenship now serves not
only to distribute political, civil and social rights, but also to participate
in conditions of greater equality in communications interchange, in cultural
consumption, in the treatment of information, and in access to public spaces. A
"citizen" in an information management society is one who applies knowledge and
the necessary goods to participate as an actor in the flux of information, in
the circulation of knowledge and in mediated dialogue so as to adapt to new
processes of management and organization.
     To develop these potentials there is a need to distribute assets
throughout various sources of production and diffusion of knowledge: the
expression of demands and opinions in the means of communication so as to
benefit from their flexibility; handling of codes and cognitive skills of
modern living in order to acquire strategic information regarding one's own
projects; handling of communicative possibilities and the exercise of rights to
defend their cultural differences and develop their group or territorial
identity; and organizational and administrative capacity to adapt to situations
of growing flexibility in work and everyday life so as to respect their vital
projects. Together with the demand for housing, for attention to health and
diversification of consumption, is added the demand for information, for useful
knowledge, for transparency in decisions, for better communication in the
enterprise and in the society, and for mechanisms of public visibility and
interlocution with others.
     In this new field for the exercise of citizenship, the outcome depends
upon the disposition of knowledge and techniques, and access to networks,
flows, "competitive" projects, etc. According to this, the progressive
centrality of knowledge and education for development are felt in the dynamic
of a democratic order, for the material and symbolic basis for democracy now
does not rest exclusively on a version of economy or political institutions,
but also in the widened use of knowledge, information and communication. To
this degree, the codes of modernity permit a greater capacity for adaptation
and productive scenarios, greater interchange within the society and more
egalitarian access to public life.(4) It illustrates the updating of the old
desires for modernity: to form productive human resources and promote the
development of autonomous persons.
     The challenge is not easy: we live halfway between underdevelopment and
the information and knowledge society. We can avoid neither the historic nor
the emergent forms of citizenship. Yet if we aspire to form an active part of
the globalized world in matters of economic competitiveness and of
communication and cultural presence, we cannot postpone the formation of the
necessary capacities for the effective social use of knowledge.


Our development, from post-World War II until the end of the Seventies, has
associated social integration with virtuous processes in which the social
groups access the dynamics and benefits of progress. Various phenomena would
have come together in integration: participation of the active population in
modern, more productive employment with a better salary; access to better
education and to greater possibilities of social-occupational mobility; a more
diffused buying power and access to a growing gamut of goods and services;
better territorial insertion, that is, access to quality housing and habitat
and to amenities connected to the modern infrastructure, and institutionalized
access to health and social security services.
     On average, a high and sustained rate of growth was obtained, with
positive jumps in scholarship, urbanization, reduction in family size, access
to basic services, participation in consumption and access to means of
communication. If we consider indicators of well-being like those utilized by
the U.N. in its Reports on Human Development, we arrive at a positive balance:
educational levels, life expectancy and average income levels had auspicious
results in 30 years of growth. But other indicators temper that vision: income
distribution always worse than the world average; political instability and
fragility of the democratic system; a high level of structural heterogeneity
and persistence of high levels of informal labor and marginal housing due to
the accelerated urbanization; persistence of a broad contingent of the poor and
formation of subcultures immune to modernization.
     Full social integration was never achieved, and in this we should avoid
the mystification of the past. Furthermore, the historical tendencies were
truncated partly by the crisis of the substitution model and by the traumatic
transformations of the economic scene. Meanwhile, the lost decade sharply
impacted the social condition of the poorest groups and also of a large part of
the middle class. Despite the partial recuperation observed during the last
decade, income distribution has barely improved.
     Additionally, the informal workforce has not disappeared, based on low
incomes and low capitalization, and it comprises the sector that absorbs masses
of workers remaining on the margin of productive modernization, or low-skilled
youths who join the labor market; the traditional rural sector becomes ever
more marginal with respect to the rest, and the society fragments from the
accumulation of those phenomena, with disturbing impacts in terms of civic
insecurity, political apathy and increases in violence.
     Together with these features, there are alleviating elements. Infant
morbidity and mortality diminish. Education presents more problems of quality
than of coverage, implying that it has increased, such that other educational
challenges can be met. The diffusion of means of communication allows for the
great majority to be better informed and have better access to cultural
production and the political debate. There is more consciousness and use of
civil and political rights, greater validation of political and cultural
pluralism, and the theme of citizenship and of social and cultural rights
acquires renewed spirit.
     Optimism and pessimism cohabit. There is disenchantment before the
collapse of national projects that filled the collective imagination of the
future with expectations of social integration. As opposed to developmental
occasions and the socialist project, there is nothing on the political agenda
nor in the vision of the future that leads one to think of rapid change in
matters of social integration. Inequality is not automatically resolved with
successful economic indicators, for informal labor persists, marginality and
sub-cultures are consolidated in the large and intermediate cities, the fiscal
and social vulnerability of numerous contingents seems to augment, violence
increases in fact and in citizens' perceptions, political disaffection grows
and it becomes ever more difficult to adhere to shared values or to mutual
support nets. All those are indicators of a diminution of social cohesion.
     Yet on the other hand discourses circulate in which a social insertion of
attainment by anyone is redefined: forms of management at the micro and macro
levels for the director of a great or micro-enterprise; new media of
information and communication, that can make everyone into an active citizen,
generating messages and producing information; redirection of social capital
and community "empowerment," key mechanisms for the social and administrative
development of deprived groups (5); validation of the cultural diversity that
makes of everyone, or of each group, a unique import into the societal fabric;
efficiency and focus in social politics to optimize investment in
administrative reforms for the least protected that have a central tendency and
a local tendency and community policy-making. Social insertion seems involved
in this discourse that is placing upon a single map the euphoria over the new
technologies, the emergent criteria of engineering and social management; the
expansive virtues of "systematic" competitiveness and the adhesion to
pluralistic values (political, cultural and gender democracy).
     To this paradox between apocalyptic and the enthusiast spirit can be added
others: the gap between symbolic integration and material disintegration.
Modernization puts the classic image of social integration under judgment. The
myths of development and modernization, until the Seventies, tightly associated
symbolic and material integration. Access to housing, modern employment with a
growing income, and services of health and urban infrastructure were associated
with greater political participation, cultural interconnection and formal
education. Mass society introduced the symbiosis between widening of
consumption and the socialization of all in reading and writing, practical
information and "expressive" use of public spaces.
     This link in prospective development today is broken or better, atrophied
on the side of material integration and most enlarged on the side of symbolic
consumption. In a way, social well-being is not dispersed in proportion to
economic growth, the number of poor does not stop diminishing, and consumption
stratifies into its diversifying rhythm; yet access to symbolic goods provided
by formal education, television and practical information expands. If
globalization accelerates the circulation of money and images by way of
microelectronics, it is certain that money's circulation concentrates and that
of images disseminates. Globalization thus impacts on national societies
simultaneously exacerbating their social segmentation and communicational
openings, while strongly altering expectations and patterns of behavior.
     The average individual in a peripheral society finds herself obliged to
distinguish between a menu of symbolic consumption and another, more
restricted, of access to an participation in material progress. The
reconciliation seems far away, awaited by classic modernization, of integration
between the material (through distribution of the benefits of growth) and the
symbolic (through politics, education and the media). But we reckon with
countless options for symbolic gratification. The caricature of the day shows
empty hands together with eyes brimming with worldly images.
     Does this mean more disintegration or other deterioration of the
components of social integration? Poverty does not decrease, but school
matriculation does increase, like television and computer density (the first,
in almost all poor houses; the second, spreading from the upper class towards
the middle), political liberty and of values and consumption expectations. The
gap between "hard" (material) disintegration and "soft" (symbolic) integration
feeds the confluence of disenchantment and enthusiasm. Social segmentation is
criticized, yet the defense of cultural diversity awakens adherents. The
informal workforce is a structural factor in reproducing poverty, yet we talk
of self-management and "access to strategic skills" that the new times can put
within the reach of all. At the same time that social-material integration
seems to expend all its old resources, the new impetus of symbolic integration
emerges from industrial culture, political democracy and the new civic
movements. Whether with long-distance intercommunication, opening of public
spaces or self-determination of social subjects, what is certain is that they
seem, in very diverse fashion, to give one new forms of symbolic integration.
     Auspicious and dramatic signals interfere. If indeed the flowering
cultural-industrial complex seems to promote a new impetus for symbolic
integration, that collides against the opaque wall of unequal distribution of
goods, services, assets and understandings. On one hand, the cheapening of our
goods and services from the culture industry, and their ductility in
penetrating different environments, is held to be a promise of greater
integration; but, on the other, new forms of cybernetic illiteracy threaten
broad swaths of Latin American children and youth who do not experience any
sort of computerization.
     In the field of the transmission of techniques there is a diversity of
access to education and knowledge. But this new way of channeling talents in
socially recognized ways collides against another wall: social stratification
in the quality of education, which lays the ground for visions of a more unjust
and unequal future. Yet at the same time the opposite possibility exists, since
the new technological developments, if combined with an effective expansion of
citizenship, can be utilized to enrich labor, generate more connections between
socioeconomic segments and sociocultural actors and to direct advances in
productivity with socially promoting criteria.
     The new utopia of knowledge is not accidental before the vacuum left by
imaginary development and the breach between symbolic integration and material
integration. On the one hand, the diffusion of access to pertinent knowledge
permits people's potential competitiveness to be socially distributed, from
which the aggregate competitiveness of a society increases along with the
material benefit that such competitiveness brings. On the other hand, and to
the degree that that access supposes "active reception" and "critical
discernment" by the recipients, it permits new generations to adjust to
modernity with a greater consciousness of their identity. An "up-to-date"
utopia of democratic modernity, justly expressed? What is certain: upon
education and knowledge falls, in great measure, the hope of reconciling
economic competitiveness, social equity and the learning of the exercise of
modern citizenship.


In this situation of greater material inequality and greater symbolic
integration, it is worthwhile thinking whether this asymmetry impacts the level
of integration and social cohesion. According to the traditional functionalist
thesis, one could think that the gap between low material integration and high
symbolic integration generates a crisis of expectations that can erode social
cohesion. In other words, the constant exposure to mediated publicity, together
with more years of education and greater consciousness of one's own capacities
and rights, provokes higher expectations of social mobility, consumption and
material well-being. That asymmetry between consciousness and real
possibilities generates frustration and a crisis in expectations, which implies
heightened conflict.
     Meanwhile, this asymmetry attempts the very opposite: symbolic integration
"compensates" for the powerful inequality of access and material goods. This
idea resides in a bogus concept, "complex equality": inequality would not be
given homogeneously in every land. Thus, for example, in education and in
consumption of communication media, the equity gap that is found between income
and regular expenditures is not reproduced, at least not to the same degree.
Complex equality means that we are not "equally unequal" in everything, and
that thereby less unequal fields are opened from where inequality in the most
critical fields can be overcome. Such that if in education and cultural
consumption (of the media) the access to information and knowledge is
democratized, that enables lower-income sectors in turn to compete, with
possibilities for mobility, in more stratified subsystems such as the market
for labor and power.
     Symbolic equality would be proactive, biased towards greater material
equality. According to Walzer, equality would be based in the asymmetry between
access to material goods and to symbolic goods. The idea of Luhman and Habermas
according to which societies are comprised of ever more relatively autonomous
subsystems, allows us to consider this notion of complex equality and from
there make the gap "positive" between high symbolic integration and low
material integration. Which justifies investment to reduce inequalities where
investment could have greatest systemic impact: where virtuous circles between
subsystems are set up.(6)
     But there are objections to the idea of complex equality. It is argued,
for example, that the poorest in income and productive employment are also the
least equipped with symbolic capital: they have fewer years of scholarship,(7)
less access to new means of communication (especially interactive), to
interchange with public authorities, to networks for social and professional
promotion. It would be necessary not only to redress equity (greater equality
of opportunities) but also equality in a broader sense: equality of
opportunities seems insufficient to achieve a more egalitarian society, and the
politics are lacking that compensate the least qualified so as to achieve
acceptable levels of equality in results. Complex equality suggests,
normatively, intervention in different venues where inequalities are generated,
and not only the impulse ab initio. Merit alone, as a factor in social
mobility, will generate downward mobility and will reproduce the inequality of
opportunities. Therefore a politics of compensation is necessary for
"inequality of pathways" and not merely regarding initial opportunities.
     We now define exclusion as a situation suffering from inequities in
diverse subsystems of the society, from labor incomes to education and from
access to knowledge to access to basic services. Such that complex equality
applies to societies where systematic inequalities exist. It is enough to
inquire, then, into the relation between citizenship and exclusion. For if
citizenship includes the full exercise of civil, political, economic, social,
and cultural rights, and if furthermore the new interactive modes of the
mediated world and the new forms of management and association are
incorporated, is it wrong to suppose that those excluded are so with regard to
a large part of citizen rights and the modern exercise of citizenship? Are not
the excluded those who have the least possibilities for political
participation, for visibility in the public space, for access to income and
worthy employment, to quality education and good social services, to useful
information for users of services and as consumers, and to form an active part
of electronic networks?
     If liberty is understood not only in the negative sense, as the absence of
coercion, but also in a positive sense, as the power to orient one's personal
life according to one's own desires and projects, and if equality is understood
in the proactive meaning given it for example by Amartya Sen, for whom it is
measured less in distribution of incomes and more in the capacity to realize a
determinate life project, would not the excluded be deprived simultaneously of
positive liberty and of equality? And if liberty and equality are two faces of
citizenship (since it requires the possession of civil, political, economic,
social, and cultural rights) the previous definitions indicate to us that the
traditional "trade-off" between equality and liberty would not occur, and that
equality (in the distribution of capabilities) is a condition for the
"positive" exercise of liberty (as the power to realize one's own projects).
     The presence of social rights as a condition of citizenship serves to
enable this complementary form of equality and liberty. On one hand, "the
raison d'etre of the social rights such as education, the right to work,
the right to health, is an egalitarian reason," since "the three tend to
minimize the inequality between those who have and have not, or to place an
ever larger number of individuals in position to be less unequal with respect
to individuals more blessed by birth or social condition"(8). On the other, the
indivisibility of rights allows movement from negative liberty (civil rights,
which proscribe excess coercion) to positive liberty (political, economic,
social, and cultural rights, which empower decisions over conditions affecting
one's life).
     But the presence of economic, social and cultural rights also depends upon
resources for their exercise. As opposed to civil rights, which oblige the
State not to intervene in areas controlled by the subjects in political
society, and to political rights, which link to a democratic-representative
order, the attainment of economic, social and cultural rights is tied, at least
in part, to economic development. Therefore, their demands are not immediate
and absolute, but dynamic and gradual. The recognition and effective protection
of economic, social and cultural rights do not occur spontaneously. The
economic, social and cultural rights conflate a general normativeness with
concrete demands that society, or sections of it, obtain from the State:
better conditions of work, education, access to health and housing, etc.
Economic development generates resources that permit giving a reply to those
demands and implementing economic, social and cultural rights. For that, a part
of the additional resources that growth generates should be directed to their
full implementation, but also to the most efficient organization of the
services that channel those resources to the benefit of the groups most
affected by the general inequality.


According to Max Weber, the loss of social cohesion is a problem intrinsic to
the processes of modernization. Socio-economic, occupational and geographical
mobility, the economic conjuncture and the complexity of the social systems,
cultural secularization and the loss of mooring in tradition corrode social
cohesion. Confronted with this, politics and the State have been fundamental in
constructing "modern" forms of cohesion: through a new social pact incarnated
in a Welfare State, critical in the distribution of wealth and in the provision
of employment, or through codes for communication and interaction shared thanks
to universal education and the mass media of communication.
     Yet the global scenario also shows that the modern forms of social
cohesion themselves erode. The reasons are many: a) the crisis of the welfare
or planning State and its difficulty with guaranteeing well-being and promoting
employment; b) the dilution of national frontiers and the difficulties that
confront the nation State in maintaining a clear collective identity; c) the
stratification of access to knowledge and quality education; d) progress in the
secularization of values and diversification of lifestyles, by means of an
intense and extensive interchanges of images and messages; e) the corrosive
effects of the third industrial revolution, which opens the gap between
included and excluded, threatens massive contingents of technologically
unemployed, replaces the international division of work with new
configurations, and promotes a model of the intelligent but individualistic
worker; f) the gap between the "democratizing" expansion of images of the world
versus the concentrating expansion of money, which produces a crisis of
expectations with unforeseeable results; and g) the effect of two decades of
neoliberal hegemony with an economic culture that privileges the private over
the public, the individual over the collectivity and personal benefit over
social solidarity.
     Yet also in the most resourceful sectors attitudes are observed disruptive
of social cohesion: the elites exclude themselves from civic life and withdraw
in closed neighborhoods; they do not interact with other groups, except as
employers or executives; they generate and support their own educational
systems, emphasize links with many other countries and do not link with their
own society.
     To regain the public space, as a meeting place where symbolic equality is
found and difference is fruitful, is basic in breaking the exclusions of above
and below. The object of such politics then passes from the social to the
public. In that which is public is found a sense of relevance that cannot be
found in social politics. But at the same time a focused and compensatory
politics is required to reduce the social gaps and palliate poverty.
Equilibrium between both fields of intervention matters. Avenues for
intervention in the public space are many and we only mention: the
rehabilitation of the use of the land and of the city; increased use of public
goods in service of the community; politics to increase security and neutralize
violence; modern politics in public education; efficient and reliable sanitary
systems; defense of the environment and of minority cultural groups.
     The rescue of the public space is part of the extension of citizenship,
like the reduction in inequality. Today it seems opportune to evaluate social
citizenship by its relation to equity and the boom in civil and political
rights of the last decade. We not only have a political democracy in process of
consolidation, but also a democratic culture that increases and includes
respect for civil and political rights. Thus "it is not strange that attention
tends to shift towards the guarantees of rights of equity intended to
achieve an extended citizenship in which, in addition to respect for civil and
political rights, the citizens can enjoy their economic, social and cultural
     Yet the same loss of social cohesion generates a consciousness of the need
to reverse that. Those who focus on social disintegration today also clamor for
the exercise of extensive citizenship; it includes a wide gamut of actors, such
as governments, academia, social organizations and NGO's, cultural movements,
Churches, international organizations, etc. Privatizing euphoria is at an ebb
phase, in search of equilibrium between the roles of the State, of the market
and of society. The concern for "more of society" and not so much for "more
market" illustrates that ebb in which social cohesion and the extension of
citizenship along with competitive enterprises and private initiative gains in
     How is social cohesion to be understood in view of this claim for more of
society? It is sought to combine the perfecting of the democratic system, the
strengthening of the society as a domain of cooperation and communication, and
the internalization of democratic rules among the different actors. Social
cohesion does not suppose pre-modern forms--like communitarianism, homogeneity
of beliefs or the force of the central authority--but instead can be understood
in the following senses: a) an agreement to respect the procedural rules of
democratic institutionality and of the Welfare State; b) articulation of
heterogeneous social groups within a system capable of representing their
demands and of politically institutionalizing them in interventions that assign
resources for the implementation of economic, social and cultural rights; c)
development of mechanisms of civil society that reinforce relations of
solidarity and responsibility within the group and among different groups; d)
diffusion of a pluralist culture to improve the levels of compatibility and
communication; and e) affiliation with social support networks or interactive
groups that permit greater participation and integration (unions, guilds,
Churches, civil associations, etc.)
     And cohesion contributes to equality through: a) promotion of values of
solidarity and social responsibility, which generates a favorable climate for
transferring resources towards deprived sectors; b) augmentation of the
capacity to defend social, economic and cultural rights on the part of
dispossessed groups, which gives them greater presence in the distributive
fight for assets that permit actualization of such rights, avoiding the
corporate omnipresence of the strongest groups who, often using distributionist
language, tend to accumulate benefits for sectors with the most political
strength to the detriment of weaker groups of less influence; c) generation of
intra-societal (neither state nor market) mechanisms for distributing assets via
social networks and intermediate institutions; and d) promotion of agreements
about State politics for progressive redistribution tied to productivity
increases and to economic growth.
     Equality contributes to cohesion, then: a) greater equality of opportunity
prevents exclusion and discrimination and inhibits factors of cohesion loss; b)
equality of opportunity inspires adhesion to a system of rules perceived as
meritocratic; c) better distribution of goods according to ascriptive traits
contributes to the ascriptions (gender, ethnicity, age groups) not resulting in
fragmentation, enabling differentiation by ascriptive traits; d) greater
equality grants legitimacy to the State and to public administration, which
avoids ungovernability and social conflict; e) the extension of goods and
services to satisfy basic needs avoids illicit forms of procuring those
satisfactions (delinquency, micro-traffic in drugs, etc.) thus generating
respect for the Law and an atmosphere of civic security; f) a better
territorial distribution of services and infrastructure allows reversing
territorial segregation (a principal cause of lack of social cohesion); and g)
a better distribution of opportunities provides a response to the problem
called "hard poverty," within those groups of extreme vulnerability whom social
politics fails to support.


There is a tension specific to existing democracies. On one hand they seek to
renew or activate equality, understood above all as inclusion of the excluded,
yet without resulting in cultural homogeneity, the concentration of political
power or the uniformity of tastes and lifestyles. On the other they try to
support differences, understood as cultural diversity, pluralism of values and
more autonomy of the subjects, but without this justifying inequality or not
including the excluded.
     Because of this, it is of interest to shape cultural politics that permit
harmonizing self-determination of the subjects with the differences in culture
and values which follow from the defense of autonomy, with economic and social
politics that reduce gaps in income, patrimony, human security, and symbolic
capital. The challenge of combining equality of opportunity and respect for
differences situates us at the intersection of the exercise of civil,
political, social, and cultural rights. Civil, because it involves the autonomy
of individual or collective subjects to decide about their lives and values.
Political, because it tries to make room in the deliberative and decision
processes for distinct social actors and for a "democratic exchange" with this
participation. Social and cultural, because it aspires to make equality of
opportunity compatible with respect for differences.
     Given these considerations, the politics of equality attach to the
criterion of non-discrimination. That includes affirmative politics of
discrimination regarding minorities whether socioeconomic, cultural, ethnic,
age-or gender-based who display greatest vulnerability. The politics opposing
discrimination by differences (which promotes civil, political and cultural
rights) is complemented by social politics focused upon groups most
discriminated against, in the most disadvantageous conditions for affirming
their uniqueness, satisfying their basic necessities and developing capacities
for positively practicing their liberty. Affirmative discrimination, which
accompanies that focus, extends rights particularly to those who least possess
them. This refers not only to social rights but to education, work, social
assistance, and housing; also to the rights of participation in public life, of
respect for unfamiliar cultural practices, of insertion in the public dialogue,
etc. Overall, it thus aims at a complex concept of equality passed through the
filter of the new democratic sensibility, of multiculturalism and of the right
to differ, without that permitting conditions of production and reproduction
with socioeconomic exclusion.


These suggestions allow understanding complex equality as a concept worthwhile
to break down into a set of components. To illustrate this, in the table
presented below we correlate distinct aspects of social division with different
types of equality and aspects of citizenship.

Complex equality: Objectives and rights
Objectives of social division Types of equality Type of rights
The distribution of access to the level of well-being that the society can supply in accordance with its average development of production Social equality and less material inequality Social rights and economic rights
Distribution of access to education, knowledge, information, and communication which tend to open opportunities for social well-being Symbolic equality Social rights, Cultural rights and new citizenship linked to the information society and to the "mediated public"
Distribution of control of one's own situation and life-project through the power of intervening is that which affects the surroundings in which such a situation and project unfolds "Volitional" equality, also definable as positive liberty Civic rights (the power to decide), Political rights (power to affect) and new citizenship linked to bureaucratic capability and to the use of strategic information
Distribution of access to networks that constitute social capital, which promote "empowerment" and contribute mechanisms of social advancement "Binding" equality Social rights and new citizenship (powers of governance and of association)
Distribution of productive employment, and of training and diverse productive resources Social equality and less productive inequality Economic rights and social rights
Distribution of the power to affirm global visions and local cultural practices in the arena of a pluralist public dialogue "Identity" equality Cultural rights and political rights
III. REDEFINITION OF THE IDEA OF PROGRESS IN THE DEVELOPED WORLD THE AMBIVALENCE OF GLOBALIZATION Globalization is an ambivalent process, full of promise and possibilities, which can allow countries in development to overleap epochs and reach new levels of well-being and at the same time is capable of producing enormous inequality within countries and among nations. It is also an irreversible process. Its scientific and technological advances have no reversal, where the perception of the reality that has overturned the traditional space/ time relation will not disappear and has been reinvented beneath conditions of exponential acceleration: the compression of reality by means of microelectronics circulating an immeasurable quantity of "bits" in a space reduced to nothing by the speed of light. Temporal acceleration and spatial displacement are intensely displayed in the application of electronics to the circulation of money and images. The images and monetary mass that are displaced without spatial limits and occupying an infinitesimal time have no precedent. But globalization does not live univocally. From beyond its vital centers it can exist in diverse modes, in an active or passive manner. Not to oppose oneself to the forces of change does not signify renunciation of social action. To understand the traits of globalization is basic for defining an attitude engaged in the progress of democracy in its actual circumstances. To recognize the ambivalent characteristics of globalization does not imply renunciation of the ideal of equality nor its trade-off with that of liberty. Bobbio, for example, thinks it is possible to require of democracy a compromise between liberty and greater equality in the material conditions of life. That is, to him it seems adequate to seek the preservation and development of the regimen of liberties made possible as well as a certain egalitarian will that utilizes the power of the State to moderate the most manifest and unjust material inequalities for their presence in any society can make the enjoyment and exercise of individual liberties illusory and empty.(1) This viewpoint is consistent with Rawls's notion of "justice as equity" which reconciles the ideal of liberty with that of equality. Democratic societies should guarantee all citizens the various measures that permit an equitable and effective realization of their liberties. In this sense the principle of liberty can be preceded by an anterior "lexicographic" principle, consistent with the principle of satisfying the basic necessities of the citizens. The observance of this principle will be a necessary condition for them to understand and be capable of exercising basic rights and liberties in a fruitful manner. In a lexicographic ordering no principle can intrude unless those situated previously have been satisfied or deemed inapplicable. The contingencies of the "natural lottery," that originates in the talents with which certain members of society are born and which can be realized through their cultivation, will be considered as a social heritage in this setting and will be favored to the extent that they also might contribute to the betterment of the conditions for well-being of the least favored groups. Nevertheless the contingencies of the natural lottery, the family and social contingencies, which are neither just nor unjust, but are arbitrary and unmerited, can finally become causes of injustice. In accordance with this principle it would not be unjust for the society to assign special resources to the most advantaged if this were to bring with it greater welfare for the least advantaged.(2) Habermas, for his part, also emphasizes the value of equality in his radical understanding of democracy throughout the length of his prolific production. He sees reduction of the poverty and inequality constantly reproduced by a society organized by differentiated social groups as an inescapable condition for the achievement of a democratic society. The utilization of instrumental reason entirely engaged with the supercession of inequality supposes the re-socialization of values of solidarity intrinsic to social integration as well as the creation of new cultural values related to the socialization of interests not dependent upon money and power considerations. It deals with submitting instrumental reason to the reason that governs what is called the life-world shaped by personality, society and culture. The latter includes: emancipation and individuation.(3) Emancipation involves liberation from arbitrary and illegitimate power, from conscious deceit or manipulation, and from unconscious or ideological manipulation. Habermas calls individuation a characteristic of the "modern consciousness" which implies three basic dimensions: conservation, self-consciousness and reconciliation. "The utopian perspective of reconciliation and liberty bases itself on the very conditions of individual communicative socialization, these now inserted within the linguistic mechanism of reproduction of the species"(4). All this is unthinkable without the regeneration of the democratic discussion upon the basis of legitimation of the social order and of the motivations of individual conduct. The crisis of democracy can be surmounted if interests are recreated through the public sphere. An implicit aspect of this re-creation is the adaptation of citizens to exercise communicative action, dispersing accumulated knowledge throughout the society with the constant search for accord among the free and equal.(5) CRISIS OF THE WELFARE STATE Reactions to the crisis From different theoretic horizons--social liberalism, Christian socialism and above all social democracy--the progressive vision of democracy found expression in the Welfare State. Its actual crisis has been the object of varied reactions. The neoconservative finds the cause of the crisis in the bureaucratization of the State and hopes the liberation of the market will signify new advances in the general well-being. It proposes to improve the conditions for accumulation of capital, the reduction in expenditures for social services that legitimate the Welfare State and the activation of corporatism through the promotion of large-scale organizations that operate like economic and social systems with great autonomy. The State would be converted to another actor in the negotiation process, limited to a minimal realization of regulatory legislative enactments to ensure the satisfaction of general interests.(6) However, the end of the Welfare State would leave vacuums in the functioning of society, only controllable through repression or demoralization. This current should be distinguished from that of the "legitimists," who identify the crisis with the "monetarization of the workforce," and in the unleashing of market forces. They believe that the old-fashioned Welfare State should not be redefined in radical terms. Habermas labels them as "true conservatives"(7). Both responses to the crisis are passive: they limit themselves to redistribution of the impetus behind the historic realization of welfare between the State and the market. Another critique of the Welfare State emerges from the "anti-productivist alliance" or "the great refusal." It not only would refuse the generalized "commodification" of the everyday world, but also its "bureaucratization." Power and money threaten the life world. This critique questions the supposition of traditional social democracy itself: that political liberty and equality could be extended to the economy and the society through the intervention of the State. Redefinitions For Habermas, the project of the Welfare State requires a radical redefinition that should emerge from "a higher level of reflection"(8). This new level presupposes: maintaining the accord with the objectives of promoting full employment, a guaranteed income congruent with the satisfaction of basic necessities, and the shielding of the life-world from the inhuman effects of the employment system and of the administration of public services. Nevertheless, as already said, it is ever more difficult to stick to the goals related to the conditions of full employment if we do not pass from Keynesianism in one country to a post-national Keynesianism. Also, the new level of reflection includes the critique of the legitimist position. This continues to persist in the social labor utopia which follows from the assumption that the status of wage earners will be "normalized through the rights of political participation and property; that [wage earners] have the opportunity to live in liberty, social justice and growing prosperity, which is assured through the intervention of the State.(9) Here it is worth restating the position of Przeworski before what he considered "the lack of acceptable historical alternatives" to social democracy. He believed that "democracy could be extended from the political terrain to the social, as the quintessence of social democracy under capitalism"(10). This would be achieved by asserting the harmony of socialism with liberation: "the liberation from direct labor" necessary for the satisfaction of necessities, the result of "automation and accumulation." "Necessities cease assuming the form of interests, that is, the limits of their satisfaction cease being objectifications of human activity"(11). "Socialist democracy is not something that can be found in parliaments, workplaces or families, is not a simple democratization of the capitalist institutions. Liberty means individual autonomy"(12). Przeworski also calls for re-examining "the cultural problems," that is, a reality which goes beyond material preoccupations. Certainly this author did not include in his analysis the new difficulties stemming from mature capitalism and even less those derived from the problems of globalization. Returning to Habermas's central argument concerning the legitimist position, one must highlight his thesis that independent of the circumstances favoring the realization of those political and economic rights, there is room to question the internal difficulties following success itself of the Welfare State. Its success in the increase of wage costs and social benefits affects the conditions of capital valuation in the perception of the capitalist enterprise, which leads her to invest in rationalizing the productive process and in turn affects labor productivity and the demand for workers. The State cannot intervene to the extent of altering the factors surrounding the accumulation of capital. The Welfare State is not an autonomous force propelling prosperity and it cannot ensure the realization of social justice in the workplace. It lacks sufficient power to ensure generalized well-being.(13) Another field for reflection involves the suitability of political power for promoting and safeguarding emancipatory forms, those worthy of the human being. Without denying the high degree of social justice achieved by the Welfare State, its reformers did not consider the intervention of the State in the life cycle of its citizens problematic. Those who recognize the historic achievements of the Welfare State also may be disposed to admit "a mistake that does not derive from any particular obstacle nor from a partial realization of its promises. That mistake has to do with the narrowness of vision of the project itself"(14). The professionalization and "scientification" of the administration of social services is linked to practices that deform the life- world, isolating it, desiccating it, controlling it, generating new forms of exploitation and impoverishment and conflicts which unfold in the psychological domain, which are internalized and are not less destructive than material conflicts.(15) In summary, we face a contradiction between the method and the goal of the Welfare State, a contradiction inherent in it. The establishment of free and egalitarian life forms that allow the development of the personality implies generating new ways of life and these cannot be created with "average" power. This reflection is expressed politically in cultural action to recreate the elements of a new legitimacy, which can only be born from non-distorted communicative interaction: from mutual, non-ideological understanding free from all forms of submission to structures of domination. Thus democracy is defined as an incessant search for a communicational ideal. This will be a new utopia that renounces defining a totality, but which believes in a social order justified by its capacity to generate and regenerate the conditions for a type of rationality that affirms communicative action: the emancipation, individuation and extension of communication free from any form of domination. The modern state and advanced capitalism Even accepting its limitations, which does not imply accepting what Habermas calls "cheap critiques," it is not possible to ignore that such a state, particularly in post-war Europe, generated democratic societies with very high levels of well-being. Nevertheless, they had to confront serious crises, and the supports that had permitted them to function effectively during the "30 glorious years"--sustained growth, full employment, distributive solidarity from above to counterweight the inequalities of the market--had been eroded. Existing globalization imposes requirements not only on the economy, but also upon politics and on the systems of social protection. The neoliberal critique of social democracy rationalizes the emergence of a discourse that understands the market not only as an essential economic dynamo, but as the unique articulator of society. However, in many senses, neoliberalism is an attempt to resuscitate the ideology that accompanied the first stages in the consolidation of competitive capitalism, only that now this ideology cannot deal with the light of development of mature capitalism. During the first stages of the capitalist economy, the distributive problems were segmented and they could be resolved through market mechanisms. The State purported that problems of integration would be resolved by the functioning of an economic system free from state intervention. The secondary and unwanted consequences of the accumulation process did not signify a loss of legitimacy if the prejudiced interests were kept, segmented, within the private sector, without bringing political effects along with it. To the degree that the capitalist economic process permanently penetrates new areas in the life of society that before were in the private domain, it renders them more vulnerable to the disturbance. This, in these conditions, assumes political relevance. In this manner, the capacity to isolate the dysfunctional effects of the economic process in each of its partial manifestations was ever lessened. The incapacity to maintain those effects as politically neutral phenomena led to different forms of state intervention. This intervention maintained the legitimacy of the public power, but it expressed itself in distinct types of market regulation designed to ensure employment, distribution of income, growth and economic stability.(16) When the political system resolved those conflicts, the modern State assumed the form of "social State with mass democracy"(17). Legitimation problems in organized or state-regulated are directly related, furthermore, with productive heterogeneity and diversification of the class structure in the economic system, and with the apparition of new general difficulties: disturbances in the ecological balance, phenomena of alienation in the personality structure and the explosive character of international relations. This last, although it may not be specific to the political and economic systems, informs their activity. To all this must be added the new problems of legitimation already discussed and resulting from globalization: the race towards deregulation of national markets so as to accept the logic of the global economy and increase its competitiveness ends in diminishing even more the fiscal capacity of the nation State to generate resources that permit its legitimation as a social State; the decline of the principle of territorial jurisdiction and of autonomy beyond that of preserving internal order and protecting the borders, that is, of the traditional domain for the exercise of coercive power, with the subsequent diminution of the "sovereign" character of the nation State, and the emergence of multicultural societies, as well as the fall of the idea of the nation as a traditional community to one whose origin and subjective basis is the abstract and coercive legal order constituted by the State. This carries with it enormous difficulties in creating "patriotism of the Constitution." Under the pressure of global markets, national governments keep losing--as accused--the capacity to influence the economic cycle, ensure macroeconomic stability, generate employment, and sustain social politics. The above phenomena comprise an insurmountable obstacle to the realization of a Keynesian politics in only one country. However, the displacement of power from national politics to the power of the multinational corporations indeed continues to be better explained by the theory of the "means of coordination for activity": the dominance of the "money medium" over the medium for coordinating action belonging to the political system, the "power medium." The global market becomes independent of the power medium and of all the structures of the life- world. The risk of inequality The emergence of neoliberal thought leads to a profound fall in the value of equality and instead presents inequality as a positive social value and even as an economic necessity. Individualism grows and the State and even the public sphere are devalued, which acquires full expression in the saying of Margaret Thatcher: "Society, there is no such thing." In order to avoid the legitimation crisis, culture, in the advanced capitalist societies, contributes to a depoliticization of that which is public through the creation of a strong bias towards the private in the vocational, civil and family domains. "Civil privatism" will consist of a strong interest in the results of the administrative system and in lesser participation in formation of the popular will. This is expressed, in the realm of the family, in interests oriented towards consumption, and in the vocational field by careers with an interest in success. This privatism has its correlate in the occupational and educational system regulated by free competition. Individual development, necessary to obtain the rewards of well-being and success, cannot always be assured: it presupposes equality of real opportunity and a "just" assignment of rewards on the part of the market. The promises of reward that the ideology of development attributes to individual efforts, which have accompanied all stages of capitalism, are threatened by the lack of coordination between the occupational system and the educational system. Meanwhile, a growing difficulty exists in evaluating, solely attending to individual achievements, professional development in different productive sectors. Furthermore, the fragmentation and increasing routinization of work, demanded by the market, tends to disconnect material rewards from vocational interests and the unfolding of identity. Individual action motivated by the utility calculus assumes the validity of the assumed sovereignty of the weakened individual consumer and also ignores the emergence of needs related to intellectual activities and new developments in science, modern art and the universalization of values. These necessities cannot be satisfied through material compensation and in turn favor the evolution of new normative structures. If they are blocked, immense damage will be caused to the motivational resources of the society, which will be expressed in different forms of psychological regression.(18) The theoretic and subjective acceptance of inequality permitted the increase of all the practical inequalities, which is perfectly verifiable: it augments the abyss between rich nations and poor nations and in every country, the gap in incomes between the few who control the wealth and the many who survive or remain "excluded." It is evident that the margin of personal and civic liberty if very different for one or another. As against this crisis of democracy, Habermas's intellectual effort relative to his redefinition of a "new level of reflection," briefly outlined here, is therefore most pertinent. Squaring the circle Other reflections oriented in the same manner and which are pertinent to recognize here are those of Dahrendorf and Beck. For the former "the response to the experience of disintegration, to extensive antisocial behavior, to the crude competition among individuals incorporated in the ideology of, enrich yourself Sir," would be "the discovery of citizenship, of civil society, of a civic sense and of civic behavior." What he calls "the squaring of the circle" means "squaring the circle of prosperity, civility and liberty"(19). The destruction of the linkage between civility and liberty is certainly associated with "the winds of internationalization," globalization and its stimulus to competition, the fall in social spending, increase in individual contributions to social security, victimization of the middle class, and diminution of the integrative function of local communities. This is "treason to the values of civility," "a moral problem," though it may not be the origin of a "revolutionary movement." The combination of individualism and exclusion is the high price of macroeconomic success paid by "free societies." Apparently the response would be nothing but some way of concretizing Kant's ideas in favor of universal history along with cosmopolitan intentions. To square the circle it is necessary "to reconstruct civil society beneath the imperative of the new conditions." "There is no word that better describes the sectors, interests and classes of citizens than the term, association. The creative chaos of associations that collide among themselves but from which...also emerge the greatest number of persons who can simultaneously obtain the greatest number of opportunities" to satisfy their interests. The collision does not preclude the values of confidence, cooperation and inclusion.(20) Experimental lives The emphasis of Beck is centered upon the impact of globalization on "the process of individuation." "The importance of an authentic life in a runaway world" is a phenomenon resulting from the process of differentiation, in the language of Habermas. The breakup of traditional society and the emergence of "institutional individualism" pressures people as much toward a constant differentiation of roles as toward the creation of social linkages. As distinguished from what happens in traditional societies, now "the individuals are obliged to fill out their biographies with risk..., broken, decomposed." There is a great difference between the individuation in which institutional resources exist like human rights, education and the Welfare State to allow the construction of modern biographies, and their atomization in which those do not exist. The neoliberal idea of the market reinforces atomization with all its connotations"(21). The institutional guidelines and the insecurity, often incalculable, require of individuals a great capacity for action. In this milieu the failure is not perceived as a class experience in a culture of poverty, but individual. Unemployment and pathologies at the level of personality are internalized as the result of mistaken decisions, incapacities and defeats, although these perceptions be mistaken.(22) Today biography depends also on globalization. "The multi-local transnationality of our life is one more reason for national sovereignty to be vacated and sociology based upon the nation to be obsolete"(23). The first from the first to the second modernity is also a transition from the monogamy to the polygamy of places. The sources of collective and group identity and meaning that characterize industrial society (ethnic identity, class consciousness, faith in progress, with ways of life and notions of security sustained the western democracies and economies until the Seventies) lose their mystique and collapse exhausted"(24). In the global and denationalized society the individuals are permanently dedicated to undo traditions and construct new hybrid cultures that are the result of a process of individuation from which conflict is not exempt. Globalization, de-traditionalization and individuation create space for "an experimental life"(25). To live one's own life is almost synonymous with the need to construct "a reflexive life": processing of information, dialogues, negotiations, and contradictory compromises. Now culture is not a product of tradition but instead of liberty. "Culture is the terrain on which we affirm that we can live together, equal, yet different. No one knows how to make compatible the necessity for mass organizations (political parties, unions), of creating obligations among individuals with the demands of participation and self- realization"(26). In a situation like that described, one would try to search for a kind of "cooperative or altruistic individualism [that] means thinking of oneself and living for others." This used to be considered a contradiction, while today "the result of an internal connection." The politics based upon the defense of life as a personal project is the rejection of its powerful adversaries: "the powerful market system...and a sensation of community that suggests purity and homogeneity"(27). In political terms, this type of approach requires recognizing, in addition to the opening of society, the sub-politicization of the society with intermediate decision-making levels, adopted by organizations of great scale but at the same time heterogeneous, a depoliticization of national life in terms of the conventional forms of political participation, and a confidence in the capacity of initiatives proceeding from individuals who wish to construct new biographies. All of this places into doubt the suitability of the traditional channels of democratic representation.(28) The attempts at reflection represented by some of these authors have not been useless and are known in Europe and the United States and have allowed a new reflection in progressive thought, which refers fundamentally to the developed societies from which its elaboration emerges. Nevertheless, and with precautions to avoid mechanical applications, they are useful for Latin American reflection, particularly for those countries of greater relative development. REFORMULATIONS OF PROGRESSIVISM A glance at what was examined and proposed at the third summit meeting, "Progressive governability for the 21st century" (Florence, November 1999) (29) allows us to delineate various characteristics of that which has been called a process of renewal, in this case of progressivism. In the first place, the abandonment of a psychological attitude of nostalgia for the past is evident, which permits the recognition of fallacies, errors and setbacks and a better comprehension of what is possible in the future. In the second place it is recognized, with nuances, that the frontiers have changed between conservative and advanced forces. There are new social divisions, producing changes in the exercise of citizenship, with the electorate having become more volatile and the political parties debilitated. The right obtains votes in the ex-working class timid of change, and social democracy in sectors that had been prohibited. (In France, the left vote between 1986 and 1997 fell among workers from 62 percent to 49 percent, while that of top executives rose from 32 percent to 52 percent.) It becomes inadequate for it to enclose itself in old schemes of representation and reinforce introverted cultures incapable of dialogue with social sectors that traditionally have sought different representation or are on the margin of civic participation. For the new laborism, this is the new center, which opens upon a radical left tradition, and to liberal currents and the progressive Christian sensibility. In Italy, the "center left" is nourished by the post-communist Italian tradition, by the Christian democratic culture, by the liberalism described, and by diverse expressions of environmentalism and human rights. In Germany there is an alliance with the greens and in France "la gauche plurielle" emerges. There are no class barriers, since the logic of the civic majority tends to impose itself over that of class. The multicultural character of modernity and wealth of society Another aspect in the center of consideration is the idea that there is no univocal way of living out globalization. The political function is not to resist the forces of change, but instead to adequately negotiate them. This can take many expressions. Modernity is not the sum of modernizations nor simply a response to aspirations for consumption, but also social integration and quality of life. It is possible that the idea of the public and of the collective, of the sense of community, are not segregated from the evolution of society, but are part, together with individual liberty, of a modern concept of citizenship. Macroeconomic stability An indispensable good is serious macroeconomic management, the rules of the game clear, with discipline in the handling of the public account. "In the past the word left was judged incompatible with low inflation. For many it evoked images of instability, capital flight, free spending and inflation"(30). Together with the importance of macroeconomic stability, they focus on the inconvenience of the producer State and of paralyzing taxes, and recognize the role of the market as a growth engine. Complementary roles of the State One assumes intervention of the public sector in areas that should complement private action. This is seen in investments in infrastructure, in leading technologies and sciences--the basis of competitiveness in the 21st century--, in the growth of human potential through training and education, in stimulation of long-term investment and in the development of medium and small businesses, key to generating employment. A regulatory role of the State is claimed in the nature of a "traveling companion" for the enterprises of a "New Industrial Revolution." And this regulative role supportive of the market is empowered and perfected. The State contributes to creating the entrepreneurial spirit, for the jobs of tomorrow will be created above all by small enterprises and services, and it also backs investment risk, simplifies administrative processes, and invests in innovation through an active politics of risk capital. The environment as opportunity The environment theme appears not only as a problem, but also an opportunity for development: the defense of land, the air and the water comprise an investment possibility for the future, and its guardianship and enhancement activities can generate thousands of work opportunities. Nevertheless, a progressive perspective, even stemming from within the developed countries, cannot avoid a wider vision. In this regard CEPAL announces that: "In the last three decades a planetary situation without precedents has come into evidence and been scientifically documented, derived from the growing and accumulative scale of human activities... This has effects of a world character such as global warming, the thinning of the stratospheric ozone cap, the reduction in biodiversity, and the advance of desertification and drought, that acquire a perverse dimension, that of "global public bads" (31). The foregoing has made manifest the greater environmental vulnerability and the greater interdependence existing between nations. In consequence, the environmental question goes very much beyond national confines and relates to the rationalization of the international management of sustainable development confronted by a set of international institutions that is still precarious, most especially when the nations in development must confront growing pressures to reach elevated environmental standards in their negotiations to obtain commercial accords that will permit them to accelerate their growth processes. It attempts to recognize, to that extent, that "common yet differentiated responsibilities exist," which obligates the developed countries to assume more environmental commitments than the developing nations in the framework of multilateral agreements. This will permit a virtuous circle within their environmental politics, the elevation of the quality of life, and competitiveness. INTERNATIONAL REGULATION OF FINANCE A decisive theme has been the new international financial architecture. "We all have the experience of the national States which...regulate the economy. We all live out the new great problem of the world economy, that is not set against a State. What are the tools of its politics? What is to be done with the international institutions to guarantee them greater stability and a more equitable benefiting from the riches produced? How is inequality to be reduced? I think that that will be the new frontier of politics, to regulate globalization through supranational institutions"(32). The theme of the regulation of globalization is, however, a fundamental theme of progressivism, while the actual situation may remain however difficult, where there are no regulatory norms or the regulatory norms derive from the definitions taken by a limited number of countries. This discussion has some similarity with the laborious process of 500 [sic] years ago, when the United Nations were formed and rules had to be established to allow it to function. The existing financial volatility and the level of disequilibrium on a world scale makes urgent some type of regulation of international financial movements, over the three trillion dollars that are transferred daily from one economy to another without there being practically any regulation. When there is no regulation, the strongest always rules. In truth the international economy at the beginning of the 21st century is very different from that which existed in the middle of the 20th century, when the organs of Bretton Woods were created and, therefore, a central problem is the profound reform of their functioning so that they rise to the level of the new challenges. This includes resolute and expedited action by the multilateral financial organs and by the more developed nations to prevent financial turbulence from starting in economies that would be fully sustainable if confidence were reestablished and, worse yet, spreading to other countries continually putting regional and global stability at risk. Reform of the State and reconstitution of the public domain The traditional Welfare State has problems of financing and distribution of expenses and has accumulated disfunctionalities, injustices and privileges. Reform does not imply the conservative "dismantling," but new mechanisms for equality of opportunity, equity between generations, stability of those mechanisms and job creation, moving from assistance to favoring new conditions of activity. A State is assumed which emphasizes the correlation between duties and rights and is capable of generating opportunities, which exerts itself so that originating and continuing conditions of the citizens may be similar, for only thus can the confines of individual liberty be extended in a substantial way. The adaptation of the Welfare State to the actual conditions of competition places at the center the investment in human capital, in goods that generate greater intergenerational equality. Equality is the acquisition of symbolic goods (education), is proactive so as to achieve greater material equality in the future. The following measures are highlighted to reconstitute the public domain: maintenance of public spending; sexual equality; recovery and enhancement of public spaces; extended public services, available to the majority of the population (only a welfare system of wide coverage generates a common civic morality)(33); control of the level of criminality; and investment in goods that generate the greatest systematic impact. However a society that only delivers initial equality of opportunities is insufficient; from that a meritocracy would result where conditions of inequality would persist (visible, for example, in the United States). Measures of equalization and simplification of procedures are necessary. The new Welfare State is founded upon a new contract between the individual and government, and places education and employment in the center. Regarding education, it posits strategic public investment destined to supersede the education gap; the pertinence of the educational process with respect to the speed of unfolding knowledge; and information about and respect for new forms that allow a working life characterized by continual change which more emphasizes "changing horizons" than accumulation of information. In regard to employment, it is found that private enterprises create the vast majority. All are adopting flexible rules of organization. Under actual competitive conditions, that includes linking salaries with the levels and advances in productivity and management, programming and arranging flexibility such that it will not be extreme and unilateral, but instead useful for employees and employers, which requires reconciling flexibility with minimum wages, with effective unemployment insurance, with permanently formed protective mechanisms for employment transitions, with part-time opportunities, and with elevation of the quality of the handiwork and measures to avoid its marginalization. The perfecting of democratic institutions If indeed the proposals of this reflection first obey the peculiarities of each country, in all there is concern for the weaknesses in the actual functioning of democracy, in the devaluation of the parliamentary role, in the decline of representation by the political parties as spaces for citizenship and civic formation, all of which seems to involve a process of disaffection and depoliticization of the citizenry, and of the accentuation of problems of representation and legitimacy between directors and directed. This situation tends to produce discomfort and difficulties in democratic legitimacy, which is tied to the incapacity of the political system to achieve new forms of counterweight to the exclusions the market generates. Thus the emphasis on transcending the separation between citizens and their representatives, in reversing consideration of the public space as the space of a political class separated from the people, nontransparent if not opportunist and even corrupt. If one considers those phenomena, she can also dwell upon the importance of measures decentralizing, de-concentrating power and intended to reinforce associative life. The guiding idea is to "provoke the birth of a new civic ethic, a new relation between the State and individuals, with new weight for civil society"(34). Yet in all the actual proposals of social democracy the need is felt to ensure respect for rules that eliminate privileges and clientism, a reform of justice in terms of making it accessible, rapid, modern and respectful of rights and, finally, decentralization which permits giving greater decision power to local government, that closest to the people. THE CURRENT SITUATION OF GLOBALIZATION AND DIFFICULTIES WITH PROGRESSIVISM Despite the efforts at renewal accomplished by the center left parties and having directed good governments in Holland, Italy and France, they have been defeated electorally. In the always unique case of the United States of America, Clinton, despite concluding his term with a high level of support within public opinion, was replaced not by a democrat but by Bush. What is the explanation? There would not seem to be a single explanation, but everything indicates that the current moment in the process of globalization traverses a phase characterized by its most somber traits: the asymmetries and inequalities that characterize it have sharpened. A negative spiral has been established between the increase of insecurity, whose emblematic moment was the attack on the twin towers of New York, and the subsequent chain of negative impacts in the world economy, where the fragile signs of recuperation tended to be refuted and financial volatility increased along with economic insecurity. At the same time, conduct of the principal world power has tended to reduce the international agenda to the theme of terrorism and of security from a unilateral perspective, without considering the tremendous force an effort would have, in the combat against those "global bads," to reduce "other global bads" that give rise to instability, inequality and injustice, and operate to foment cultivation of terror and insecurity. There does not appear on the horizon an agenda that proposes a new international financial architecture and the protection of global public goods through international instruments and prudential rules capable of limiting the risks to the weakest economies and of generating countercyclical effects. And the current moment of politics and the economy, marked more by the destructive than by the creative, give rise in the perception of societies, beyond the realities, to insecurity and the fears, being afraid of the "other" and particularly of the impoverished immigrant from another culture. In the case of Europe, the center left sectors have strongly resented that new international scenario and have suffered its effects upon relevant portions of the electorate, particularly on those who most perceive a threat in globalization: the workers without qualifications or with low levels of qualification, the "non-graduates," the excluded and marginalized of globalization, those to whom the social changes of the last decades have left them unprotected and without clear socio-cultural referents. In some countries volatility of the vote not only has moved toward the traditional right, but also towards forms of the extreme right or of rightist neo-populism which has shown great capacity to "politicize the rejection of politics"(35). The nations that have displayed such phenomena are those where the anti-globalization, anti-European, anti-immigrant, and anti-party movement is the strongest; those where the gap has opened widest between an "elite" fit to live in modernity and a "people" who suffer the changes. These movements take diverse forms and diverse accents, deriving from a nationalist or regionalist reaction that insists on its particularisms, which combines xenophobia and traditionalism, authoritarian reactions and rejection of universal values, and directs itself as much towards those who have been deceived by the classical right as toward classically left populations who feel unprotected before the changes underway. Nevertheless this ebb of European "progressivism" should not be a "long wave." To shorten this wave two conditions would have to be satisfied. First, that the progressive position offer a convincing strategy of economic leadership. And second, that it includes the implementation of plans that represent new forms of protection of wide coverage against the risks generated by the economic transformations. It would be fatal to undo the path covered by renovation; on the contrary, one must reinforce it, improve the capacity to learn from social changes underway and generate a new public politics so as to include the productive and distributive aspects which comprise the hard nucleus of its tradition. The "elite"-"people" gap and anti-political discourse and its danger of anti-democratic derivations will only lose strength if channels of social mobility are opened sufficient to break their present blockage. Certainly those channels, together with those at the global level, would ensure social cohesion and a positive experience with the immigration phenomenon such as it was in the past. The subject of the center left cannot be anything but the citizen, the public, and not the corporations with their privileges whether they be from the left or the right. "A government of the center left should always stand against injustices. When it does not do so it becomes an establishment"(36). Only a strong, growing economy will be able in the end to overthrow exclusion, poverty, and insecurity, and will permit democracy, diversity and tolerance to be consolidated. The center left confronts insecurity and criminality from its own perspective. As opposed to the threatening discourse of the right, its primary objective is to act efficiently, with the same meaning in government that it has in other political and social domains. The struggle against inequality is conjoined with the need for security of those citizens who obey the rules and only deal with the public forces to be defended from criminality. The future of the center left is also in play in the European construction, where it historically has had a fundamental role. A more economically, socially and politically strong progressive Europe is a space that is dramatically needed to create a more governable and more habitable world. The war in Iraq, and the logics of "preventive intervention" and of "unipolarism" on the part of the leaders of the present great power, with the consequent weakening of the international community and of the United Nations, dramatically shows us how arduous and laborious will be the road to defeat phenomena as bloody as the terrorism that constitutes a real danger for humanity and which has contributed to create the situations discussed above. It shows us, in turn, the real difficulties that exist to make it respect the rules of multilateralism, giving predominance to right over force and to the consensus concerning unilateral decisions. IV. THE CHALLENGES TO A PROGRESSIVE PLATFORM IN CHILE (1) ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL LAGS If one imagines that European and North American reflection have much in common with our own, it is necessary to express reservations, to consider the differences. It is different to speak of economic and social reforms, or to redesign the role of the State and social politics in countries where the GDP exceeds 15 thousand dollars per capita than in countries where it does not reach, as in the majority of our own, even five thousand dollars. In Europe, in order to adapt to the new conditions, it is necessary to transform the Welfare State. In Latin America, where this had not existed with that level of development, it involves creating a social net which allows maintaining the society's cohesion before the challenges of the new competitiveness. In the crisis of the Eighties, external financing collapsed and the economy suffered in the majority of our countries, who should have re-oriented their development strategy so as not to be left behind. No one forgets the high social costs of the structural adjustment and economic reconversion programs that permitted us to get underway. So severe was this readjustment that CEPAL called the Eighties the "lost decade." And it was at least partially so. The economy did not grow and the indicators of social progress plummeted. Nevertheless it seems to us better to describe the events of those years is they are characterized as those of "painful lessons": therein was a growing process of democratization and of advances in pluralism that accompanied decisive economic transformations. Towards the end of the decade of the Nineties, on balance the economic transformations show advances and lags.(2) There are significant advances in macroeconomic stability, diversification of exports, access to greater levels of external financing, and increments in economic interdependence, impelled by a new generation of formal integration accords. Nevertheless the growth is still far from being that necessary to tackle the technological and social lags. The economies show a high degree of vulnerability, lax increments of internal savings, insufficient expansion of investment, and a sharpening of the structural heterogeneity of the productive systems. Relative to poverty national differences were very profound. During the first five years of the Nineties the incidence of poverty diminished from 41 percent to 39 percent, an important advance but insufficient to counterbalance the increment from the past decade which was from 35 to 41 percent, and to exceed in absolute terms the number of poor who at this time reach 210 millions. The magnitude of the economic growth and the reduction in inflation have been critical for reducing poverty, as also the effort to increase and ensure the efficacy of social expenditures. Those countries most reduced poverty who reconciled relatively high rates of growth over several years with reduction in the unemployment rate and higher employment among the poorest families. The rhythm and characteristics of actual growth continue to generate less employment than that necessary to productively absorb the workforce. Productive heterogeneity in employment and the marked differences in the rates of public unemployment have been perpetuated and in some cases accentuated. In the countries where recorded urban unemployment fluctuated around five percent, the unemployment in the poorest decile is close to 20 percent and exceeds 30 percent when average unemployment reaches greater rates. This tends to deepen the productivity difference in the most dynamic and modern sectors relative to the others and augments the dispersion in working incomes, which in part explains the rigidity in income distribution that has accompanied growth even in the most successful experiences. The median advance realized in the region towards the middle of the Nineties became every more fragile towards the end of the decade, so as to produce a frankly negative situation by the beginnings of the 2000's that calls into question not only the progress but also the sustainability of the efforts taken to successfully integrate itself into the world economy. The effect, the existing "dark" phase of globalization has brought perturbations that have been devastating to the region. Perturbations in the financial markets and their rapid and indiscriminate propagation keep the perspective of a new lost decade always in view. The successive crises, that of "tequila" in 1995, which involved regional growth of one percent while the world economy expanded at 3.6 percent, and later the Asiatic crisis in 1998 and 1999, in which the region grew at 1.2 percent as against world growth near three percent, speaks to us of the tremendous vulnerability of the Latin American economies. The foregoing has become aggravated even more by the given recessionary problems: the Argentine hecatomb, the fall of Uruguay, Paraguay, the situation in Venezuela, the uncertainty of the Brazilian economy, comprise a somber reality where even the most solid economies, like that of Mexico, are overtaken by the recession, and the Chilean seems to be facing a prolonged deceleration in the rhythms of growth. Only recently has there begun an unstable and insecure attempt to project a region-wide improvement.(3) The gravity of the economic scene is accompanied by deterioration of the political systems and by a strong disaffection from the democratic system, by resurgences of social atmospheres that can undermine systems for negotiating conflict and favor the populist offerings of corporate origin, by anti-modern identity reactions of various types (from authoritarianism to revolutionary "revivals"). The sharp perception of social injustice, that those who pay for the crisis are "the underdogs," the vision in various countries of the political elites as corrupt elites and of globalization as a conspiracy of the rich nations to exploit the region, is a reality reflected in an increase in nationalist positions and in the discredit of many of the leaders before public opinion, in the deprecation of the political parties and in the extreme volatility of the vote. The depiction of a region advancing, with problems yet with average results, cannot now be sustained: today the Latin America scene, the very sustainability of globalization, seems questionable,(4) and the danger of sacrificing one's gains is real. The region could only survive with difficulty and without convulsions a continual regression in its levels of social equity and setbacks in matters of poverty. The deep requirements for Latin America to retake the road to development, which is related to an increase in its competitiveness and to a rupture of the intergenerational transmission of social inequality, today confront two enormous obstacles that negatively affect them. The first is the asymmetry of international relations, which causes the nations in development to be particularly vulnerable, whose efforts are always threatened by an excessively high level of uncertainty. So it needs to be permitted that the effort of the nations of the region to order their economies and attain development be protected from international financial volatility and that they generate conditions for a new international financial architecture. The second obstacle emerges from the need to overcome the existing political weakness of the nations of the region. The development becomes indispensable of political systems that allow diversity to be captured, but which generate social cohesion, respected and transparent rules of the game. Demanded is a public and strong democratic system, which can only be the fruit of a political system with great capacity for conciliation and with a vocation at once to integrate the world and to reduce the multiple manifestations of inequality. Progressivism in Latin America will only be able to play a role if it supplies correct answers when confronted by those two great obstacles. It is safe to say: if it is capable of simultaneously embodying economic dynamism, incorporating technological progress into its productive systems, generating social networks capable of achieving more just, cohesive societies, and strengthening its democratic systems assuring stable levels of governability. CHILE: AN EXPERIENCE OF DEVELOPMENT GUIDED BY PROGRESSIVISM It is said, not without reason, that Chile had an exceptional situation in Latin America for having attained so much in the last 15 years in matters of growth such as democratic development and equity since the recovery of democracy. This permits thinking that Chile may in a possible future reach meaningful levels of development with greater degrees of democracy and equity. It is good to analyze such a possibility when beginning a brief reflection upon development. It could be said that attaining development is not something univocal, nor does it admit to an exact definition. From an orthodox perspective it is usually tied above all to the conquest of high levels of growth of the gross domestic product. From a more egalitarian perspective, development appears to be identified with a better distribution of wealth without focusing the effort on growth. Everything indicates that to seek a balanced vision of development presupposes avoiding unilateral visions. A country can considerably exceed ten thousand dollars per capita with levels of internal inequality so great that its poor live as in the least developed countries or have important levels of equality in a sea of mediocrity and poverty. None of those visions seems desirable for Chile. To imagine achieving development in today's world assumes in the first place being very aware of the international context and the comparative dimension so as to posit obtainable goals. When we think of Chile as a country nearing development we are not thinking solely of a determinate per capita income level. We are thinking of a country that, together with capturing a level of economic growth sustained through time, displays notable improvements at the levels of income distribution, socially integrated and with varied opportunities for social mobility; which exhibits a solid democratic density, high levels of probity, efficiency and public responsibility, a diverse and active civic fabric, and one that resolves into a culturally tolerant society. The virtuosity with which the dichotomies growth-equity and democracy- liberty are handled will determine, in our view, the level of development that Chile can obtain in the near future. In regard to the economic growth necessary to reach development it is unrealistic for a small nation as strongly integrated into the world economy as Chile to set growth rates outside of the cycles that the latter undergoes. Nevertheless it is possible, as reality itself demonstrates, to defend to the maximum, in a downward cycle, achieved benefits, to diminish the recessionary dangers and take advantage of all the opportunities presented for continuing to grow even though it may be at more modest rhythms, and to be in the best condition to seize opportunities when a new positive cycle opens. In that the definitive quality of public action consists. Therefore, even taking into account the enormous difficulties of the world economic situation at the beginnings of this century, Chile can, with a view to achieve an acceptable development level around its bicentennial, propose to maintain throughout the decade a rhythm of economic growth that on average approaches double what the developed nations are obtaining. For this it is necessary that, just as has occurred during the last 15 years, Chile be among the countries which grow most rapidly in Latin America. To be on the threshold of development cannot be defined according to one dimension or one indicator: it will be expressed in a combination of many factors, in a considerable increase with respect to the annual per capita income, but also in an increase in the income of the first quintile, towards a percentage in poverty that approach more to ten percent than to the actual 20.6 percent, where indigence shall be eradicated as a social phenomenon and a different series of aspects shall be displayed which make Chile a society with a different face. To be able to fulfill these objectives, Chilean society should reinforce its sense of social integration and its symbolic unity, at the same time respecting diversity and pluralism. And additionally it will have to take a giant leap towards full incorporation of the technological revolution in Chile. These are goals that as we well know can never be fully reached. One strives meanwhile to ensure a constant tendency towards their achievement. Most respectably, some theorists propose higher philosophical goals, like happiness or love among human beings. Yet a certain "pessimism of the intellect" calls for prudence in the objectives that one wishes to carry out.(5) Happiness and love in human relations are tied more to individual and psychological avatars than to the activities of public politics and to politics "tout-court," and when they have been transformed into political goals it has ended more like a nightmare than a dream. From there we derive our modest, though persistent, vision of development, which is not measured only by average figures, but instead above all by the level of dignity of life for the least favored. It is to reach a society where the majority of conflicts can be processed through negotiation, reducing use of force to the necessary minimum, where diversity is accepted as a good that enriches, not debilitates, social cohesion; a society where social ascription would be reduced to a minimum and where disadvantages do not all accumulate in the same persons and be transmitted over generations; a society, finally, where even assuming the reductive conceptualization so in vogue of "winners" and "losers," the "winners" can have their reward but the "losers" would also have their level of human dignity ensured, and their offspring can in turn be "winners" if they have the talent and the merits to be so. To achieve a society that approaches the suggested characteristics, goals more restrained than ambitious must exist, not harboring hopes of great harmonies, fraternity and social happiness. A more realistic relation is to generate the conditions so as to advance step by step towards a society where liberty and equity expand and where democracy functions as effectively as possible. We are not imagining a utopian for Chile, but we envision a laborious path of reforms. This Chile of the Bicentennial will also be a society with inequalities and conflicts, with sufferings and injustices. Yet to have neared the threshold of development will mean that more wealth will exist and that its benefits will reach more Chileans, that there will be more possibilities for everyone to unfold their desired life project with fewer obstacles than those which exist today. REACHING THE THRESHOLD OF DEVELOPMENT FOR CHILE WITHIN A REASONABLE PERIOD Approaching the threshold of development has a possible basis, often already solidly constructed. During the decade of the Nineties, poverty diminished significantly moving from five million Chileans in poverty, which there were in 1990, to three million in 2000. In percentage terms poverty decreased in one decade from 38.6 percent to 20.6 percent of the population; this fact can be studied with attention to the world level by its enormity, but in our provincialism, at times self-interested, we view the advance with a certain indifference. In comparative terms, Chile constitutes the only nation in Latin America that can display those levels of advancement in the diminution of poverty.(6) Despite the foregoing, Chile's performance in the reduction of extreme poverty has been still more remarkable, it decreasing from 12.9 percent in 1990 to 5.7 percent in the year 2000. Behind these figures are found economic growth, gains in income and in the distributive impact of social expenditure. All this is a response to more than "good administration." If the democratic governments did not indeed step backwards from the military regime in the economic arena with a set of modernizing measures, they changed fundamental orientations that they brought to fiscal politics, education, infrastructure, and social politics, and they did this on a plane such that the transformation has not only been radical with respect to the nation's democratization, but it has been made intellectually false to speak of gradualism. There exists an original mixture that still has not received theoretic justice. Notwithstanding those advances, one should indicate that the country presents levels of inequality which would be structural, and therefore practically unmodifiable. According to studies of the CEPAL,(7) the levels of inequality in the country have been kept practically unchanged over the past ten years. The above contracts, in any case, with the regional distributive tendency: the majority of the countries during the last decade saw the concentration of income, far from decreasing or holding level, increase.(8) That is, in Chile there are fewer poor, but the distance that separates this group from those who possess higher incomes would not have diminished. This last assertion is not entirely exact. In effect, the distributive impact of public spending was strongly influential, not only to freeze the existing gap between rich and poor, but also actually succeeded in diminishing it, intermittently yet with persistence. In the year 2000, the average monthly income for households in the first decile increased 31 percent as an effect of these subsidies, bringing with it a slight improvement in the distribution of income. By adding monetary subsidies to autonomous income it is obtained, for the year 2000, that the portion for the first two deciles increased from 3.7 percent to 4.3 percent and that corresponding to the richest decile decreased from 42.3 percent to 41.7 percent.(9) The same evidence is found in other studies. An investigation at the University of Chile (10) confirmed that the social politics implemented in the 1990-96 interval comprised an effective tool for reducing inequality. This work indicated that in 1996 the richest quintile had an income equal to 18.9 times the income of the quintile of lowest earnings, without considering the effects of the socialized politics. However, when these are included in the computation, inequality diminishes notably: to 11.4 times.(11) For figures for the year 2000, the relationship is more encouraging. Applying the same methodology, we find that the richest quintile has an income 15.3 times that of the poorest quintile upon considering only autonomous income. Importantly, such a relation decreases to 8.3 times when social subsidies are taken into account. In this connection, the 20 percent of the poorest households increased their portion from 3.7 percent of autonomous income to 6.4 percent of total income, while the 20 percent of the richest households reduced their fraction from 57.5 percent of autonomous income to 53.4 percent of total income.(12) With the foregoing we are not maintaining that the levels of inequality which Chile presents are in any way acceptable. Nevertheless, it is worth noting that the tendency of this decade is contrary to that which is normally sustained. In this sense, a complete synthesis can be summarized thus: in 12 years of democracy, the tendency has been towards permanent economic expansion, strongly influenced by the international confluence as much for good as for bad, toward a constant reduction in poverty and a gradual, but invariable, decrease in the gap found between rich and poor. An impressive demonstration of the leap in social mobility experienced in Chile over the last ten years is seen by comparing the Census taken in 1992 and that from 2002, as much in its global statistics as when the events in the poorest communities are analyzed. The leaps forward in education, housing, showering, sewers, access to domestic goods and of interconnection (washers, automobiles, television, telephones, computers) are spectacular.(13) Yet these categories finally take account of the precarious nature of the immense life transformation in aspirations and in subjectivity of the Chileans over the last 12 years. Not under any circumstances do we pretend to embrace this theme, yet the Chilean social reality has been marked by the connectivity generated by the phenomenon of globalization. The mobilities that Michael Walzer and other authors describe, and the asymmetric combination of modernization processes and modernity, present us a much more complex and multi-colored photograph of the social stratification in Chile, of the sharings, aspirations and frustrations of the diverse social sectors. The study of public opinion #41, carried out by the Center for Public Studies (CEP) displays very impressive dimensions to us in augmentation of income and enjoyment of goods during the final years for middle and lower middle classes. Naturally none of these elements by itself characterizes a "good life" or a "good society"; but indubitably we confront gigantic changes in people's lives in a growing process of universalization of connectivity and of access to information. The Chileans have experienced a tremendously accelerated and naturally traumatic process of change in the last years. In a few years they have had to adapt to changes and fashions in their cultural icons, in their identities, reference groups, lifestyles, family structure, mechanisms of social mobility, in the relation between the individual and the collective, and have lived through a revolution in their hopes and a multiplication of their needs. Their work environment has drastically changed. In a few years changes have befallen them that for their grandparents or their parents took generations. Those changes have highlights and shadows and have provided the ground for different analyses that put the accent on one or another aspect. The distrustful approach toward those advances, implanted from positions nostalgic for a past where the collective occupied a greater space, appears sterile in our judgment for its irreversibility and a bit "patrician" when it is produced by those who always have had connections through intergenerational transmission. Nevertheless, in our view not helpful either is an uncritical view of the partial nature of those advances when they co-exist with a segmented educational system or with profound inequalities in the possibility of confronting misfortune by reason of work, health or social provision. On this plane, Chilean society traverses the problems that come to all the existing democratic societies and in particular to those who have lower levels of development. It is well to remember Toqueville's point: "When conditions improve, the sentiment of frustration and of lack intensifies." Chile is far from development and from a true modernity, but it is equally far from the Chile previous to its insertion in the globalized world. So we cannot then miss the more properly pessimistic tone that emerges from studies relative to the Chilean subjectivity (very high levels of uncertainty towards others and towards an important number of democratic institutions).(14) Keeping the above-described context in mind, there are three levers that actually bring Chile nearer to the edge of development, beyond the situational polemic and the necessary democratic debate. A first aspect is to complete the reconstruction of the republic, the expansion of the liberties that should be embodied in constitutional changes which assimilate Chile to normal liberal democracy from a legal point of view, a necessary condition to really effectuate the ideals of liberty and equality. The center of this change has been constituted by the democratic normalization of the civil-military relationship. Another fundamental component of this first aspect is the urgent transformation of public institutions ever more dissonant with the growth and development of the society that requires a transparent and modern State, the possessor of instruments adequate to a functioning which allows accomplishing its tasks efficiently, uprooting opaque, incorrect and even corrupt practices. A second aspect is to continue advancing upon the terrain of equity, to generate the basis for decreasing inequality and diminishing poverty in future years, implementing the creation of an indispensable social net in a country that aspires to be developed and to maintain high degrees of cohesion and social peace. A third decisive aspect is found on the plane of economic growth. We have already said: in a globalized economy a good part of Chile's success depends upon the international economy's rhythms of recuperation. Yet there is a considerable part that depends on us. If thus only the "necessary minimums" are considered, it should be seen that if we do not regain growth of at least four percent it will not be possible to decrease the existing levels of unemployment; even that percentage does not permit the expansion necessary for growth targets that ensure arriving on the threshold of development by the Bicentennial. It is necessary to make an extraordinary effort to recoup the rhythms of growth with greater speed. A gigantic impulse would be required, then, to develop new levels of competitiveness, seek new activities, execute a decisive leap in formation, recycling, perfecting of markets, eliminate the disfunctionalities of the public domain, overcome the bureaucratic obstacles that impede greater initiatives, and break the misunderstandings between the public and private sectors to generate a powerful launching pad for growth. COMMON TASKS OF A DEMOCRACY FOR THE 21ST CENTURY IN LATIN AMERICA As we have seen the future of Chile and of Latin America depend upon an effort of the international community to transform their international institutions and protect, in a countercyclical manner, the efforts exerted by the countries in development, but at the same time requiring indispensable internal efforts. These are in our judgment those that are indicated below. Regeneration of solidarity relationships between State, market and society This project is inconceivable without the regeneration of solidarity relationships between State, market and society, which should be understood as distribution of the obligations mentioned and as counterparts of the rights attributed by society to the agents of social cooperation. The progress of democracy implies a balance between rights and responsibilities, where the favored groups bring their capacity and talent to society and do not retire into small worlds--geographic, social, cultural, and recreational--privatized and self-sufficient. In this sense, businesses not only produce and work, but also cooperate in improvement of the workers' living conditions and in the efforts to integrate less favored groups into the economic and social progress. In the same way, the workers do not limit themselves to the defense of their rights, but also contribute to the general welfare. The governments, for their part, assume a function of encouragement in this direction, providing to the citizens and associations the instruments that will permit them to exercise their rights and assume their responsibilities. In Habermas's language, the proposal for a new democratic project involves in this sense a reestablishment of interest in the public sector, and a supercession of "privatist motivations" in the individual, family, professional, social, and political domains. In this last sense, it demands a revalorization of politics as the expression of popular sovereignty and, no less important, a change in the relations between governments, parties and persons, social communities and agents of economic initiation. It attempts to generate synergy between government, the political system and civil society, which implies a de-bureaucratization of welfare services and a limitation on the arbitrary discretion of the State, of economic power, of the communications media, and of all mega-power. These processes will have as counterweight an increase in initiative, autonomy and responsibility of civil society as also the exercise of personal liberties and effective respect for civil, economic, political, social, and cultural rights. To maintain macroeconomic achievements and incorporate technological progress The reinforcement of macroeconomic stability and its extension to the development of active anti-cyclical politics, incorporating long-term growth as an objective, is complemented with active politics to strengthen the productive structure. It concerns whether the society and the people adapt and dominate the diversity and complexity of the new realities, providing means of knowledge and action and instruments that lead away from refuge in defensive conduct before the changes. To begin and integrate ourselves as nations in the global world implies accepting the opportunities and challenges of the information revolution and the combination of scientific and technological advances. Failures to incorporate the technological innovations of the 21st century curtail our opportunities of free enterprise as well as integration. If governments and the private sector facilitate a propitious climate for the enterprising entrepreneur, they contribute to reducing the costs of access to the new technologies and foster research and scientific progress, the citizenry resulting in a better position to participate in the new technologies. This climate will stimulate individual and collective liberties and their manifestation in new capabilities for enterprise and innovation; it also will support the capacity to generate greater opportunities of equality for the greatest number of persons and social communities. Equity, solidarity and integration The recomposition, after proactive public and private action, of a sense of social and moral integration of the national community will strengthen or reconstruct confidence damaged by savage forms of competition, uncertainty or confrontation. In this way it would recreate the symbolic unity of society: a sense of association and belonging to a culture and to a community that promotes solidarity relations and at the same time values diversity and pluralism in a universalized world. This could be the most appropriate context for the expression of the general interest, public goods shared by all, and for the moral development of persons in conformity with their particular definitions of good. Integration, in a broad sense, will be manifested in various dimensions. In the economic, as the inclusion of all in access to the conditions and the benefits of economic progress. No one should be excluded from the material aspects of modernity. Moral and civic integration provides a sense of belonging to a single society. The social implies a sense of solidarity disposed to correct the generation of inequalities. The territorial is the capacity to value the entire territory and can require reducing differences of opportunity and of resources among cities and rural zones, and to support the processes of decentralization and territorial deconcentration of power. Cultural integration is the presentation of a complex identity formed from multiple diversities. The political is the democratic reflex of a society whose normative links cover all the citizens. To modernize the State The above presupposes an effort to modernize the administration of government and adjust to the times, so as to guarantee that it concentrates upon solving citizens' problems and on promoting their development. Association with the private sector to produce certain goods and services can benefit the less favored groups. Decentralization allows the citizens to acquire greater and effective control over the solution of their problems. A modern public administration considers the viewpoint of the beneficiaries and delivers public services with efficiency and equity, more personalized and of higher quality, in education, health, personal assistance, in penal justice. The principal obstacle comes from bureaucratic resistance and from "clientist" practices, from the vision of the State as "war plunder" and from the dangers of corruption that that implies. Perfecting of international cooperation The commitment in favor of strong communities requires international cooperation. The developed world has duties to the countries en route to development and those with respect to the use of the assistance. That destined to alleviate debt should be utilized to satisfy necessities of the population, not to finance internal conflicts, or between countries, to destroy the environment or obtain unjust advantages in international commerce. The idea of community can be promoted from a national, regional or global optic. A stable international financial climate is key to fostering growth and reaching the benefits of globalization for all the countries. The recent crises underline the necessity of adequate financial regulation.(15) From the positions discussed one can derive a political set destined to motivate the development of the new democratic project such as the following.
  • Education and universal access to technical progress These are sine qua non conditions to promote economic dynamism and insertion into the market economy and to generate long-term growth, stability and full employment. This implies encouraging lifelong learning and actualizing the aptitudes of less qualified workers. With the expansion of education, including higher education, the foundation of investigation into the new technologies is likewise created. Educational achievement is also necessary for progress with equity, development of civic consciousness, and distributive justice. A first expression of the latter is betterment of income levels and the reduction of poverty. Distributive justice is seen especially in support for economic and social rights, but is not limited to them. As we said, a new dimension of equality is access to symbolic goods, one of which is the new information technology. In a more general way, the reduction of inequality of opportunity between men and women and the defense of the rights of other vulnerable groups also are associated with the improvement of educational opportunities. Insertion into the national, regional and global economy is consistent, finally, with the protection of the environment. Politics of sustainable development should include it in all the relevant arenas of national and international politics.
  • Social security as an expression of solidarity relationships Improvements in the social security net can avoid the perpetuation of poverty and the inequality between women and men. Furthermore, it is necessary to ensure that assistance to aged, sick and incapacitated persons have a secure financial base. Thus the new demographic challenges can be confronted. Social politics should supply conditions that permit effective management of the labor market.
  • Strengthening of civil society Communities have greater opportunities for prosperity if families operate in a protective surrounding that allows public action on its own initiative. The strengthening of civil society assumes respect for pluralism in a context that ensures rights and promotes duties which will be respected if they are born of politically agreed-upon norms. FINAL REFLECTION This book does not pretend to express a model or a doctrine with respect to progressivism at the outset of the 21st century, still less to constitute itself as a utopian vision full of absolute convictions. Nor is it a neutral glance towards the grand themes at the century's beginning: the relation of globalization with democracy, liberty and equality. The analysis is performed from a position taken that of necessity is not only libertarian but also egalitarian such as the democracy described by Bobbio, Rawls and Habermas, among others. We have tried to analyze globalization understanding it as an irreversible and ambivalent phenomenon, yet holding this process to a critical view, recovering the magnificent expression of Fernando Savater: "one thing is being in favor of electricity, being in favor of the electric chair is something completely different"(16). Surely it is not a text called to grand polemics. It assiduously seeks the attractiveness of "the terrestrial task." Its tone and its objective are more to indicate, with a realistic sense of its proportions, the difficulties with which democracy is dealing at the beginning of the century, without more definitive answers, keeping a marked high valuation on the gradual advances, the incomplete constructions, without those meaning the deferral of a permanent aspiration towards a better, freer and more just society. If any ideas in these writings have been able to help the reader understand the complexities through which our societies move and know the difficulties and obstacles as much as the eventual road to attain a better democracy, with more liberty and equity, they will have fully fulfilled their mission. NOTES I. 1. Anthony Giddens (1999) Runaway World, Profile Books, London. 2. In the United Kingdom, around 1911, manual workers were 75 percent of the workforce. They were 50 percent in 1981 and less than a third in 1991. In the same manner, the proportion of economically active women grew from 56 percent in 1971 to 72 percent in 1999. And between 1901 and 1991, the proportion of agricultural workers fell twelve-fold to two percent. See A. H. Halsey (2000). 3. I.N.E. (1999). 4. A. Giddens, op.cit. 5. Example taken from A. Giddens, op.cit. 6. The essence of the discussion is taken from A. Giddens. 7. Manuel Castells, "Globalization, Identity and State in Latin America". Government of Chile, Ministry of the Secretary General of the Presidency/PNUD, Santiago, Chile, 1999. 8. F. Gonzalez (1999) Report on Global Progress. 9. See F. Fukuyama, "The end of history". The National Interest, no.16, summer 1989. 10. The countries with the best rhythm of development achieved a notable effort of investment in education. From 1980 until 1995, the public expenditure for education in four recently industrialized Asian nations reached these averages: Hong Kong had 2.7 percent of its GNP, that is 16.9 percent of total government spending; Singapore with 3.2 percent of its GNP, equivalent to 19.1 percent of its public spending, and Thailand 3.8 percent of its GNP and also equivalent to 19.7 percent of the expenditure of government. Korea, between 1980 and 1994, maintained as an average expenditure on education a value equivalent to 4 percent of its GNP which in 1992-1994 reached a level of 16 percent of its public spending. Japan in 1993 sustained expenditures in education that reach 3.7 percent of its GNP while China in 1995 invested an amount equivalent to 2.3 percent of its GNP (Source: Unesco, Statistical Yearbook 1997). 11. Jean Daniel (1995) Journey to the heart of the Nation, Andres Bello, Santiago, Chile, p.171. 12. Ralf Dahrendorf (1995) Quadrare il cerchio", Benessere economico, coesione sociale e liberta politica, Laterza, Bari, Italy. See a fuller development of this in chapter three. 13. Alain Touraine (2000) Can We Live Together? Equality and difference, Stanford University Press. 14. Michael Walzer (1997) Pluralisme et Democratie, Esprit, Paris. 15. A. Touraine, op.cit. (1997). 16. A. Giddens, op.cit. (1996). 17. A. Touraine, op.cit. (1997). 18. On the concept of democracy see the report of Agustin Squella in his book Philosophy of Right, third chapter "On Democracy and Rights", Editorial Juridica de Chile, Santiago, Chile. 19. The arrangement of the argument is taken from Fernando Calderon, Martin Hopenhayn and Ernesto Ottone, That fragile Modernity. Development, citizenship and culture in Latin America and the Caribbean in UNESCO/Nueva Sociedad, Caracas, 1997. 20. M. Gallo (1990); A. Minc (1993); J. C. Ruffin (1991); P. Kennedy (1993); S. Huntington (1993). 21. We refer to them as anti-modern identity constructions because they are not a simple return to tradition; they are a construction where groups who feel excluded from modernization reinterpret the traditional as a weapon of identity and of combat with western modernity. 22. Alain Touraine (1993). Critique de la Modernite, Fayard, Paris. (Version in English: Blackwell, 1995). 23. UNESCO, Futuresco-Cultura, no.4, June 1994. 24. A. Touraine (1993) op.cit. 25. J. Habermas (2000). The Post-national Constellation: political essays, Polity Press, Boston, chapter 4, "The post-national constellation and the future of democracy", pp.83-4. 26. Ibid. p.84. 27. Ibid. p.101. 28. Ibid. pp.100-101 and 103. 29. We present a summary definition of this concept and refer to this author in chapter III concerning the redefinition of the idea of progress in the developed world. 30. Ibid. p.94. 31. Ibid. pp.106 and 104. 32. Ibid. p.105. 33. Ibid. p.105 and our preceding analysis. 34. Ibid. p.106. 35. Ibid. p.137. 36. Ibid. 37. Ibid. 38. Ibid. 39. Ibid. p.106. 40. Ibid. p.107. 41. Ibid. p.117. 42. Ibid. p.145. 43. Ibid. 44. Ibid. p.143. 45. Ibid. 46. Ibid. 47. Ibid. p.144. We omit here Habermas's apprehensions about the competence of the U.N. to cause the requisite institutions that embody those deliberative proceedings and related ones concerning an "ethical-political self-awareness of the citizenry" as the normative basis of a cosmopolitan democracy, just as the level to which human rights can aspire may come to have a transcultural character. It is clear that Habermas's position holds an affinity to that of Rawls regarding the procedural character of legitimate accords for social cooperation as well as democratic institutions. Both give priority to equal political liberties and public reason. Habermas however manages to distinguish and fully combine the three dimensions of practical reason: the moral, the ethical and the pragmatic. The moral, engaged with the equitable and impartial resolution of conflicts and which aspires to be universally recognized. The ethical, occupied with the interpretation of cultural values in specific historical contexts and thereby constrained in its prescriptive potential. And the pragmatic, regulated by instrumental or strategic reason. In this effort, Habermas amplifies and strengthens "the public sphere." In Rawls public life is the most restricted and in that sense "weaker." To see Rawls evolve his concept of democracy up to a post-national level, see his The Law of Peoples (1999). A major clarification of the relations and differences between ethics and morality and their incidence upon our discussion is in the introduction by F. Vallespin in J. Habermas and J. Rawls, Debate on political liberalism Barcelona (1998). 48. Ibid. p.145. 49. The arrangement of the argument is taken from Fernando Calderon, Martin Hopenhayn and Erneste Ottone, That fragile Modernity. Development, citizenship and culture in Latin America and the Caribbean, op.cit. 50. It suffices here to emphasize the difference between modernity and modernization. The latter is an historical process rooted in the changes of productive processes, demographic composition, standards of consumption and work, access to goods and services, and progressive secularization of collective action. Modernity, on the other hand, constitutes a cultural project engaged in the diffusion of values and attitudes linked to the promotion of social and individual liberty, social progress and development of personal potential, and with a democratic vocation that defends tolerance and diversity. Modernity tends toward the diffusion of a formal rationality and of an instrumental rationality, necessary for modernization, yet with a cost in terms of the reification of human life. A critical perspective of modernity is that which, without discarding the importance of rationalization, seeks to subordinate it to modern values associated with democracy: tolerance, liberty and diversity. See ibid. chapter five. 51. See CEPAL, Productive transformation with equity. The urgent task of development in Latin American and the Caribbean in the Nineties, Santiago, Chile, March 1990; Sustainable development: productive transformation, equity and the environment, Santiago, Chile, May 1991; Equity and productive transformation: an integrated focus, Santiago, Chile, April 1992; CEPAL, Unesco Regional Office of Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, Education and knowledge: axis of productive transformation with equity, Santiago, Chile, 1993; Open regionalism in Latin American and the Caribbean. Economic integration in the service of productive transformation with equity, Santiago, Chile, April 1994; CEPAL, Latin America and the Caribbean: politics to improve insertion into the world economy, Santiago, Chile, April 1994. 52. CEPAL/ Unesco Regional Office of Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, Education and knowledge: axis of productive transformation with equity, op.cit. The diffusion of education and of knowledge "synergistically" activates competitiveness and citizenship, disseminating the "codes of modernity". 53. Claudio Rama, "The cultural industries and the challenge of Mercosur" in Cultura Mercosur: politica e industrias culturales, Editor Hugo Achugar, Montevideo, 1991, p.91. 54. E. Ottone and L. F. Yanez (2000) "Globalization and human rights in Latin America", Persona y Sociedad magazine, vol.XIV no.1, p.74. 55. See G. Sartori (1999) Homo Videns: la sociedad teledirigida, Taurus, Madrid. 56. Latinobarometro in Encuesta 1999-2000 observes that even though the majority of Latin Americans continue to consider democracy as the best form of government (60 percent) there is growing disillusionment with its functioning, such that only a little more than a third (37 percent) are satisfied. 57. See Human Rights Watch, World report 2000, section on the Americas. 58. It is customarily maintained that formal citizen rights would allow increase in the capacity of behaving as a "social actor" with possibilities of self-determination, the ability to represent interests and demands, and the full exercise of individual and collective rights, judicially recognized. See Ottone, Hopenhayn and Calderon (1993) op.cit. NOTES II. 1. The authors acknowledge the important contribution of Martin Hopenhayn in the elaboration of this chapter. Part of its content is included in Martin Hopenhayn and Ernesto Ottone (2000) The Great Link: education and development at the dawn of the 21st century, Fondo de Cultura Economica, Buenos Aires. They also are grateful for the contribution of Luis Fidel Yanez to the theme of human and social rights. 2. Cohen (1998); Rosanvallon (1995); Rifkin (1996); Touraine (1997) and others. 3. Upon formulating his critique of Marshall's vision of the evolution of civil, political, economic, and social rights, Ferrajoli has insisted on the necessity of distinguishing between human rights and rights of citizenship. That goes to the contingent fact of consecration or not according to positive right of that called human rights. Positive legislation can be not so extensive as the level of recognizing all the ample gamut of human rights for all people. It is also quite relevant to differentiate between the rights of liberty, defined as rights/ negative expectations that establish prohibitions on public authorities, and social rights, defined as rights/ positive expectations that establish duties for provision by the public authorities. This second distinction would be of a structural nature and not reactive. The expectational rights span personal liberty, political, of thought, of opinion, of press, religious, to the inviolability of the home and of correspondence, to intimacy, process guarantees and habeas corpus. Rights of liberty are virtually in conflict with the State and also with the market. As opposed to the right of property and of all the patrimonial rights, they are not transferable, are inalienable. The rights of liberty represent a limit to public power and the market. Social rights that consist of positive expectations corresponding to positive duties, of obligatory provision, are those where the juridical elaboration of constitutional guarantees and effective financing for their fulfillment are most deficient. Their application is less simple and effective than that for negative rights/ expectations corollary to the duty of public authorities not to do, to prohibit. The social rights, on the other hand, impose the duty on the authorities of bringing about the provision defined as obligatory. However, the violation of social rights does not assume the character of null acts from the legal, administrative and judicial point of view. They are not the object of judicial annulment. Their violation represents an absence of the acts required for their genuine recognition. This will require modalities of coercion that do not exist or if they do are difficult to put into practice. The realization of those rights causes economic and political problems. Their application requires enormous financial resources and a bureaucratic mediation that can generate indiscretion, favoritism and even corruption. See Luigi Ferrajoli, in "From citizenship rights to personal rights" in Rights and guarantees. The law of the weakest (1999) Trotta, Madrid, pp.97-125. 4. CEPAL-UNESCO have defined the codes of modernity as "the arrangement of necessary knowledge and skills so as to participate in the public life and unfold productively in modern society." [Capacities which] "should be defined as those required for the manipulation of basic arithmetical operations; reading and comprehension of a written text; written communication; critical observation, description and analysis of one's surroundings; the reception and interpretation of the messages from the means of modern communication; and participation in the design and execution of work in groups" (CEPAL/OREALC 1992, p.157). It suffices to add here such emergent skills as the use of computers, handling of long-distance networks, capacity for adaptation to new forms of organization, administrative ability, and others. 5. The neologism empoderamiento comes from the English "empowerment". 6. Viz. the impact of educational equality in democratizing options in the labor market. 7. See chapter one. 8. Norberto Bobbio (1999) Autobiography, Taurus, Buenos Aires, p.151. 9. "La Igualdad de los Modernos" CEPAL/IIDH, San Jose P.R., 1997. NOTES III. 1. Bobbio, N. (1999) Autobiography, Taurus, Buenos Aires, pp.285-286. See also The Future of Democracy, Fondo de Cultura Economica, Mexico City, 1st edition, 1986, especially pp.16-25 and "The Crisis of Democracy and the Lesson of the Classicals" in Crisis of Democracy (by N. G. Pontara and S. Veca) Editorial Ariel, Barcelona, 1st edition, 1985, especially pp.8-13. 2. See A Theory of Justice, especially chapter II, Harvard University Press, 1971, Cambridge MA and Political Liberalism, especially Lectures I, IV and V, Columbia University Press, New York, 1993. 3. Jurgen Habermas, "Technology and Science as Ideology" in Jurgen Habermas On Society and Politics: a reader (1989) edited by Steven Seidman, Beacon Press, Boston, p.245. 4. J. Habermas, Theory of Communicative Action (1985) Beacon Press, Boston, p.507. 5. See "The Public Sphere" in Steve Seidman, op.cit. pp.231-237. 6. The neoconservative critique also embraces the "intellectuals" as carriers of modernity, "unproductive and obsessed with power". "Post-material values, especially those related to the satisfaction of the expressive necessities of self-realization, and their critical judgments depicting a universal morality are seen as a threat to the motivational bases pertaining to the functioning of a society based on social work and on a depoliticized public sphere". Meanwhile "the cultivation of traditional culture and the stabilizing forces of conventional morality--patriotism, bourgeois religion and folkloric culture-- are stimulated. "These will reward the personal duties that should support private life and ameliorate the pressures of a competitive society in accelerated modernization". See J. Habermas (1989) "The Crisis of the Welfare State and the Exhaustion of Utopian Energies" in Jurgen Habermas, On Society and Politics: a reader, op.cit. pp.285-299. 7. Ibid. 8. Ibid. p.296. 9. Ibid. p.289. 10. Przeworski, A. (1986) Capitalism and Social Democracy, Cambridge University Press, p.376. 11. Ibid. pp.276-7. 12. Ibid. p.278. 13. Furthermore, the unions suffer pressures deriving from change in the labor market, their power to execute threats has diminished, they have lost affiliates, and are seen forced to practice a politics of alliances determined by the short-term interests of those who still remain working. The structural basis has disappeared for the diffusion of a culture of solidarity among workers. 14. J. Habermas, "The Crisis of the Welfare State and the Exhaustion of Utopian Energies", op.cit. p.291. 15. Ibid. p.292. 16. J. Habermas, Communication and the Evolution of Society, Beacon Press, Boston, p.193. 17. Ibid. 18. Under consumer sovereignty one must mention that the system of individual preferences is not shaped by constant necessities once the basics are satisfied, including that of security. This opens two possibilities: the formation of collective expressions for their definition and redefinition, or the actual manipulation of the processes of preference formation. Lastly, the satisfaction of infrastructure needs in urban societies is necessitating the primacy of decision criteria that embark from a differentiated system of individual preferences or of forms of private appropriation. See Habermas, "What Does a Crisis Mean Today" in Jurgen Habermas, On Society and Politics: a reader (1989) op.cit. pp.266-283. 19. Ralf Dahrendorf, "Prosperity, Civility and Liberty: can we square the circle?" in Proceedings of the British Academy, vol.90, pp.223-235. 20. Ibid. 21. U. Beck (2001) "Living our own life in a runaway world: individuation, globalization and politics" in A. Giddens and W. Hutton, eds. On the Edge: living with global capitalism, Random House, London, pp.233-254. 22. Ibid. pp.237-8. 23. Ibid. p.238. 24. Ibid. p.239. 25. Ibid. p.240. 26. Ibid. p.242. 27. Ibid. p.243. 28. A more radical critical perspective is that of Immanuel Wallerstein. After almost three decades of reflection, he unalterably maintains his decidedly anti-systematic vision, an historical perspective of great range and amplitude. He always rejected the validity of concentrating the sociological analysis on the idea of the nation State. When he considers a massive transition from the existing system it would be more relevant, in theory and politically, to view the nature of the world economic system in relief. See, Immanuel Wallerstein, The Modern World System, vol.I, Academic Press, 1974; The Modern World System, vol.II, Academic Press, 1980; The Politics of the World Economy, Cambridge University Press, 1984; After Liberalism, New Press, 1995; The End of the World as We Know It: social science for the 21st century, University of Minnesota Press, 1999; The Essential Wallerstein, New Press, 2000; and The Limits of 19th Century Paradigms: unthinking social science, Temple University Press, 2001. 29. A meeting attended, among many others, by Anthony Blair, Lionel Jospin and Massimo D'Alema. 30. W. Veltroni (1997) Governare da Sinistra, Baldini & Castoldi, Milan. 31. CEPAL "Globalization and Development", Sintesis, Santiago Chile, 2002, pp.4-5. 32. Massimo D'Alema, at the cited meeting. 33. See A. Giddens (1996). 34. W. Veltroni (1997) op.cit. 35. Pascal Perrineau (2002) "Le Nouvel Observateur". 36. Mileband and Nuder (2002) "La Republica" newspaper, Italy. NOTES IV. 1. Although Chile in the year 2002 may be an exception in the turbulent regional panorama, a large portion of its problems are related to those of Latin America and we therefore think it is advisable to first paint a general panorama so as then to concentrate ourselves on our nation. 2. The rate of negative economic growth estimated for 2002 would have resulted in an increase of one percent in the number of persons living in conditions of poverty as compared with 2001. In absolute terms this is equivalent to seven million more. Thus during 2000-2002, the poor would have increased by 15 million. A very significant part of this increase is attributable to Venezuela, Paraguay and Argentina, who are contributing a third of the total (Panorama Social, 2001-02 edition, pp.41-44). Regarding the evolution of inequality, already in the 2000-01 Panorama it was seen that only two countries showed an improvement. However, the Cepal simulation studies display how important the reduction of inequality indices can be to the reduction of poverty. "In a context in which sustained economic growth appears ever more difficult to accomplish, redistribution of income appears as a complementary factor of great efficacy" (Panorama Social, 2001-02 edition, p.9). This situation is associated with the behavior of unemployment. Towards the end of the decade of the Nineties, the global rate of unemployment occurring in nine countries of the region almost doubled that existing in 1990, reaching 9.5 percent (Ibid. p. 80). The alternation of growth and contraction seen in the biennium 2000-01 led to one of the greatest unemployment rates recorded in the region over the last ten years, exceeding the average for the period 1990- 99 by more than 1.3 percentage points. (In 1999 the per capita GDP was minus one percent; for 2000 it was 2.3 percent; in 2001 at 0.5 percent and projected for 2002 at a decrement of 2.4 percent. Ibid. pp.36 and 44; table 1 of the statistical appendix, p.171 and 1.1 on p.37.) 3. Projections for Latin America and the Caribbean 2003, CEPAL, Santiago Chile. 4. Manuel Castells, Introduction to the seminar Situation and Perspectives on Latin America in an Information Society, March 25-27 of 2002. 5. The definition of high philosophical themes corresponds to what Rawls has called comprehensive general doctrines that completely encompass the specific objective of the political philosophy which serves as a basis for the constitutional democracies. In these the problem consists in defining a notion of political justice whose basic contents refer to essential constitutional elements and to matters of distributive justice. Both aspects are defined for citizens who are considered as free and equal. Between the modest, but not for that easy to achieve, goals of political philosophy and those of the comprehensive general doctrines, there should be no conflict to the extent that each has different objectives. The latter usually refers to all aspects of life while the former only proposes to make the basic structure of social cooperation in conformity with the "idea of public reason" explicit. This reason is manifested in an "interwoven and reasonable plural consensus" which is not the same as the consensus resulting from the pragmatic appreciation that it is not possible to impose the comprehensive doctrine by force, but by what is convenient to class interests or to the prevailing configuration of forces. Because the notion of individual welfare cannot be imposed, especially not through force, tolerance is revealed to be one of the most outstanding conditions for true exercise of the public reason that is the only reason capable of governing political affairs. Thus the history of humanity demonstrates. From that public reason there can and indeed do emerge reasonable consensuses among citizens who can go on holding to their individual plans and notion of good. The same basic political institutions that consecrate liberty, equality and equity of opportunities define the value of a well-ordered and stable society as a moral good and not a mere result of convenience, a "modus vivendi." Thus political stability would have a lasting moral basis and not be pure contingency. Once these ideas are accepted, the decisive issues with the most potential conflict are removed from the field of struggle. The gradual acceptance of the principle of tolerance which led to freedom of thought and religious liberty during the last three centuries still is not of universal patrimony. Also it is still necessary, through the practice of justice with equity, to keep advancing in the extension of the principle of equality in the effective organization and implementation of economic institutions under the given circumstances of economic development. (See his work Political Liberalism op.cit. and the extension of his idea of political justice or what he calls people's society, in Rawls's Law of Peoples: a realistic utopia with The Idea of Public Reason Revisited, Paidos, Barcelona, 2001. 6. Figures extracted from the Survey of National Socioeconomic Characteristics (CASEN), taken in November of 2000. 7. CEPAL, Panorama Social 2000-2001. The largest inequality is from Brazil with a 0.64 Gini coefficient, the slightest is from Uruguay and Costa Rica with a 0.48. Chile measures at 0.55. 8. The Gini coefficient increased in seven countries and decreased in four, inasmuch as the increases were greater than the reductions. CEPAL, Panorama Social 2000-2001. 9. Mideplan: distributive impact of social spending 2000. 10. David Bravo and Dante Contreras, "The distribution of income in Chile 1990- 1996", Department of Economics of the University of Chile. 11. Ibid. 12. Mideplan 2000, op.cit. pp.11-12. 13. 2002 Census, Population and Housing Survey (country-region-province- community). 14. United Nations Program for Development, PNUD, "Human Development in Chile", Santiago Chile, March 2000. 15. Jose Antonio Ocampo, "Toward a new international financial architecture", Report of the Working Group of the Executive Council for Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations, 21 January 1999, Santiago Chile, CEPAL, 1999, 70 pages; Jose Antonio Ocampo, United Nations, CEPAL, Reforming the international financial architecture: consensus and divergence, Santiago Chile, ECLAC, 1999, 32 pages (Temas de Coyuntura series, no.1). 16. Fernando Savater, conference "Philosophy's interest in a globalized world" in the Presidential Conference for the Humanities program, Palacio de La Moneda, 22 October 2002, Santiago Chile.