Brazil: In Search of a Miracle

As irreverent cariocas put it, not even Jesus Christ, whose statue, arms outstretched, gazes down on Rio from Corcovado, would be able to do much about Brazil's endemic sin of inflation. In one 31-month period, the cost of living soared an astronomical 340%, and in 1964 alone, the year that free-spending João Goulart was thrown out, it was heading up 150%. Yet when President Humberto Castello Branco took over, he confidently vowed to achieve stability in just two years.

With the strength of his army behind him, Castello Branco upped tax...

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