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Former Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo analyzes two concurrent crises: 1) collapses in the U.S. housing and financial sectors that led to the global economic downturn; and 2) the rise of social discontent and institutional fragility in some Latin American countries. Toledo argues that these two failures are inversely related. In the first case, a lack of government regulation led to an economic crisis; in the second, a deficient distribution of economic prosperity has enabled the rise of several authoritarian governments. Toledo presents policy recommendations for preventing future economic and political crises, referring to the Social Agenda for Democracy in Latin America, a regional consensus authored by 20 former heads of state.