The extreme size of America's extreme right became a trending topic in Brazil when Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck attacked the Brazilian national pastime, linking its concept of team play to Marxism and socialism. President Lula is a big futebol fan and 58 million Brazilians have gained internet access thanks to his "one nation for everyone" strategy that projects the good side of globalism.
Lula's programs are like futebol because his team knows that distributing the ball promotes income distribution and provides opportunities for everyone to score personal economic goals.
But US companies with globalist agendas that the soccer haters front for want an economic model for Brazil's digital economy favoring educated Caucasians with American-style business-to-business values, not Brazilian ones. With US consultants packaging their Trojan horse up in the cloud in a sustainable wrapper, they merely recycle the old pathology of underdevelopment, broaden the digital divide and seek to roll back government oversight of information technology markets in a nation where the social contract democracy model remains strong.
At a time when there's a lot of room for improvement in US-Brazilian relations the racist subterfuge in the Beck-Limbaugh anti-futebol message promotes an "ugly American" image for US tech and banking firms like Accenture, HP, IBM, Citibank and Gartner Research who are active in Brazil's economy. Though they are wont to admit it, all of these companies are eager to see a candidate sympathetic to US-style neoconservative political values win the coming presidential election.
Sports marketing featuring World Cup futebol stars Robinho and Kaka will help Brazil's economy expand 5.6 percent this year according to the central bank and American-based companies want to cash in on the action. According to the national banking association, FEBRABAN, internet banking grew 18 percent in 2009 and is projected to grow another 15 percent by the end of December. Sharing the soccer love, Itau, one of Brazil's largest private banks, has signed on to become lead sponsor for the 2014 World Cup to be held in Brazil.
A study by Booz Allen, with its close ties to US government agencies, indicates that Gen Y Brazilians will spend $150 billion this year. As a Paul Volcker-style yardstick, that's twice the amount Uncle Sam is spending this year to help stabilize Iraq and 52 percent of the total tax cuts approved by the US Congress in its 2009 economic stimulus bill.
In a soccer-style effort to distribute the ball FEBRABAN is reaching out to this burgeoning market with a contest awarding about $20,000 in prize money to find the best ideas for Brazil's bank of the future. This writer learned on background in Sao Paulo recently that the winners want their financial services mobile, they want a quality hand held device as their digital partner, and they want it now.
With its strong IT infrastructure Big Data Brazil has the backbone to deliver the bandwidth and make it happen. But if banks take the advice of the Gartner consultants who are active in Brazil's economy the concept of a bank for everybody that distributes the futebol to help the team win will default to the American professional baseball model with its gatekeepers and dislike for government regulation of any kind.
The net-net from taking Gartner's advice is likely to restrict opportunities to individuals who can make it to the show and get an opportunity to hit a home run or strike out in a league that takes on the characteristics of a quasi-derivatives market that is exempt from anti-trust and other regulatory laws.
With growth prospects in Northern Hemisphere economies resembling a hotbed of inertia Microsoft, HP, Accenture, Gartner and others in this globalist league seek to control and monetize data and information technology as if they were fungible commodities like oil. At a series of conferences Gartner helped sponsor recently in Sao Paulo and Rio, senior company officials pronounced that the current model of using long term contracts to lock in savings on information technology and outsourcing is broken and solicited help from Big Data Brazil, China and India to support their notion of an OPEC-style cartel that will force companies and consumers to monetize data services as if they were pulling up to a gas pump.
The Windows friendly concept of cloud computing and its digital socialism sharing model that soccer haters Beck and Limbaugh scoff at is at the core of efforts to commoditize the current contract based client-server data delivery system into a shared pay-as-you-go platform. But beyond the hype there is no trust-based method to measure the monetary value of the cloud, putting it in the same category as social media itself.
Former senior US data security officials now operating in the private sector have expressed major concerns about the privacy and overall security of the cloud and attempts to commoditize it that mobile banking enthusiasts everywhere should note. And Google, which runs its big southern hemisphere operations in Brazil, is quietly moving away from Windows friendly cloud schemes to open source solutions that offer savings,aren't data and memory hogs like the Windows world is, provide enhanced data security protection and build bridges with growing Linux Ubuntu and MAC communities in Google's markets.
Outsourcing was started by Eastman Kodak in 1989 at the debut of the big color graphic interfaces in order to squeeze costs savings from operations. Since then programs for Windows and Windows friendly apps have gotten bigger, sloppier and as sluggish as a person who just walked away from eating a Big Mac, a Wendy's triple double and a plate of Bob Griese's favorite tacos, in need a digital angioplasty. Instead of companies who were accessories to ongoing crisis trying to monetize the big data cloud, its time to put big data on a big diet.
Mobile banking in Brazil could be a win-win for globalism and for younger generations if the banks who offer it take steps to insure that everybody is included and that consumers don't develop the "ugly American" soccer hater mindset of America's neo-conservative schlock jocks. Because right now the target market for mobile banking among Brazil's Gen Y are on the affluent side of the digital divide... Brazilian faces wearing American masks.
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