With his characteristic fatalism, Tyler tells us:

If they put me in charge of a Latin country, I don’t think I could deliver superior growth performance. At best I would avoid some of the really stupid mistakes, but I couldn’t turn the country around.

On the surface, it seems absurd to think that Tyler couldn’t match or exceed Pinochet’s Chilean economic miracle. To me, Tyler’s only plausible handicap is his lack of a reputation for brutality to keep him in power. Other possibilities?

P.S. One reader remarks “I get the irony, but it does worry me that for an ‘economics and liberty’ blog, you guys seem to get more authoritarian every day.” I can see how you might read me that way, but recognizing that brutality can keep you in power is hardly an endorsement of brutality.

Normatively, I think I’m as far from authoritarian as you can get, but judge for yourself.