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The Javier Milei administration in Argentina is establishing its own governing methodology, which is vastly different from that of his predecessors, Alberto Fernández and Mauricio Macri. Milei, a self-proclaimed anarcho-capitalist, is taking high risks and adopting a confrontational approach towards his political opponents. While Fernández and Macri initially sought collaboration with their rivals for governability, they eventually broke away and faced deep crises. Milei, on the other hand, is directly pinning his opponents as enemies from the start, leading to potential political rifts. It remains unclear if Milei’s strategy is effective, but his growing political capital and popular discontent may test social tolerance for aggressive austerity measures.

Despite a decline in public interest in opinion polls following Milei’s election, recent surveys show him with a net positive public image. However, his level of social polarization is evident, with strong negative emotions towards him from certain voter segments. The main challenge facing Milei’s administration is taming inflation and stabilizing the economy. Milei and Economy Minister Luis ‘Toto’ Caputo have implemented a shock economic plan that aims to curb inflation through a painful recession. While initial indicators show progress, aggressive austerity measures have sparked conflicts with provincial governments and sceptical economists warn of sustainability issues without underlying reforms.

Milei has built his political persona on antagonism towards the political class, branding them as “the caste.” Despite toning down some campaign promises, such as torching the Central Bank, Milei remains committed to dollarization. He has identified politicians who oppose his plan as his enemies, leading to confrontations during congressional negotiations and on social media. Milei’s strategy of governing by emergency decree, rather than through a plebiscite, has stirred controversy and raised concerns about the sustainability of his approach. This political bickering may serve to divert attention from the economic challenges facing Argentina, including double-digit inflation and economic contraction.

It remains unclear whether Milei’s confrontational approach is part of a strategic plan or a result of amateurism. The ongoing political battles allow Milei to portray his opponents as part of the “caste,” while society waits to see if the economy will improve under his administration. The coming months will be crucial in determining Milei’s ability to sustain his confrontational style and address the economic issues facing Argentina. Time will tell if his unorthodox governing methodology will lead to lasting change or further political turmoil in the country.

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