Over the weekend, The New York Times released a great long piece on the situation of Puerto Rico and the war going on behind the scenes. The situation is basically a huge power struggle, testing the power of the ultra rich.
On the surface, it is a battle over whether Puerto Rico should be granted bankruptcy protections, putting at risk tens of billions of dollars from investors around the country. But it is also testing the power of an ascendant class of ultrarich Americans to steer the fate of a territory that is home to more than three million fellow citizens.
The investors with a stake in the outcome are some of the wealthiest people in America. Many of them have also taken on an outsize role in financing political campaigns in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision. They have put millions of dollars behind candidates of both parties, including Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush. Some belong to a small circle of 158 families that provided half of the early money for the 2016 presidential race.
Regardless of the victor, difficult times lie ahead for the largest unincorporated territory of the United States. But it is still good to know the real agents behind what happens.