It's also worth noting that economic policy has not been as unresponsive to market pressures as it was historically. Argentina's reflexive response to problems is to blame foreigners and to back away from international engagement. But the forces of globalization have begun to erode the self-destructive aspects of Argentine particularism.
Consider, for example, the consequences of the re-nationalization of YPF, Argentina's oil monopoly. To restore energy exports as a source of growth, the newly nationalized YPF will have to develop significant offshore oil and gas deposits.
In another era, that might have been impossible since so much depends upon the willingness of foreign investors to commit advanced technology and tens of billions of dollars to the endeavor. But if the finds are substantial, Argentina will not have to rely on traditional sources of capital or expertise.
China will certainly be among those ready to commit resources, as they have already done in Venezuela and Brazil. Petrobras Argentina, the Argentine subsidiary of Brazil's monster oil company, will also be an active player. Thus Argentina may be able to thumb its nose at from America and Europe without denying itself the benefits of Argentine offshore oil and gas. More generally, thanks to the pronounced shift toward trade within emerging markets, the Argentina can better withstand the anti-American, anti-European impulses of its politicians.
None of this is to say that Argentina is about to be awarded a free pass from the consequences of its toxic political culture. Inflation, a symptom of its wars of distribution between agriculture and industry, and industry and labor, is already running to double digits. Argentina, alas, remains a land of great promise, largely unfulfilled.