A Young Man's Guide to Late Capitalism
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In the tradition of Martin Amis, Joshua Ferris, and Sam Lipsyteâset against the stunning mountainous backdrop of La Paz and interspersed with Bolivia’s sad history of stubborn survivalâPeter Mountford examines the critical choices a young man makes as his world closes in on him.
I want to know more about Evo Morales. When does he take office?" "January." "Well, as soon as possible I want to know which foreign-owned companies he's going to expropriate, if any, and I want to know what he's going to do with them." "No problem." "And what will the World Bank and IMF do if he does expropriate foreign property? Will it affect Bolivian aid? And—and this is the most important—if Bolivian aid is cut off, how long before the Bolivians are angry enough to throw out their new
you stick with it, Gabriel, but—and I'm only going to say this to you once, I promise—but if there is another job that you can stomach doing, anything at all, you should do it." "You don't understand my situation, Fiona." She squinted at him. "I don't want to sound patronizing, because you're clearly made of just the right stuff. Really, you've got the razor edges, the scary ambition. That's all right, but that ambition does wear out eventually, and you're not left with much to show for it."
privileged as you and I. You know, we're all living with this preposterous falseness..." and so on. His mother stared at him, alternately hopeful and frustrated by his line. Bolivia did not have a study-abroad program that Brown would endorse, but Ecuador did. He had filled out his application for the program within a week of returning. Though he didn't have the words for it yet, he would later realize that what had struck him was not Bolivia itself but what it implied about the United States.
they spent no time together with other people. What they had, instead, was a kind of nocturnal hermitage in Gabriel's room. By day, their lives were blindingly public and relentlessly social. She was on the phone for hours, talking with scores of people; her meetings were stacked up tidily, constructed of ten-minute increments. Gabriel was out in the city, making the rounds, meeting political figures and bureaucrats in their offices, reporters at cafés, he was still trying to make use of his
what he would say to that person if he met him. Life was, finally, too haphazard for such straightforwardness, for such clarity. He looked at his notepad and was about to go over his notes again when he felt a tap on his shoulder. "Gabriel?" It was a familiar voice. He turned to see Grayson McMillan—ruddy, stubbly, reeking of musty cologne. "Hey!" Gabriel shook the hand, motioned for him to sit. "I wasn't expecting to see you here." "I'm a member." Grayson sat, ordered a martini from the