Subject Government and Politics International Government and Politics


Write a 5 page research paper on: Operation Bootstrap and the effects it had on Puerto Rico.

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Operation Bootstrap was an economic program instituted by the United States in 1947 that was intended to modernize Puerto Rico’s economy through a major industrialization program. Prior to 1947, Puerto Rico was an agricultural, plantation economy which lagged far behind the rest of the United States in living standards. Puerto Rican wages immediately after World War II were four to five times lower than mainland wages due to lack of infrastructure and investment outside the plantation economy (Rivera-Batiz & Santiago, 1996). Operation Bootstrap was designed to act as a Marshall Plan for Puerto Rico, despite the fact that the island did not experience any destruction during the war. Puerto Rican living standards improved dramatically in some metrics, such as lower unemployment and higher salaries, but the traditional industries, such as plantation agriculture, suffered and the social effects produced an unforeseen massive migration to the U.S. mainland in the early 1950s...

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