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July 22, 2006 [LINK]
MERCOSUR welcomes Chavez
Hugo Chavez addressed the seven other heads of state at the summit meeting of MERCOSUR members in Cordoba, Argentina, on Friday. There was much talk of addressing social inequalities, but the anti-American rhetoric was apparently subdued. His pal Fidel Castro showed up, which would have been unthinkable five or six years ago when conservatives still dominated in South America. See CNN.com.
Electoral uncertainty in Mexico
After nearly three weeks, the election in Mexico has not yet been resolved definitively. It took longer than that in the United States after the November 2000 elections, so there is no reason to panic yet. In spite of losing candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's call for mass protests to back up demands a more favorable recount, Mexico remains more or less peaceful for the moment. Catholic bishops have asked for calm, and called for week of prayer for "reconciliation, understanding and peace." See CNN.com. On Thursday, the Electrical Workers Union took some wind out of AMLO's sail, affirming that the presidential elections were in fact clean.
Economic fragility in Bolivia
Financial anaylysts in the IMF have warned that Bolivia's economy would be in serious jeopardy unless the government of Evo Morales does something to encourage private investment, soon. See CNN.com. I would agree with the IMF -- in this case, at least -- that Bolivia needs reforms aimed at promoting social equity, but that does not mean that a "movement toward socialism" (the name of Morales' party) is required. Beyond that, officials in the IMF (and World Bank) must surely realize that the possibility of widespread non-cooperation in economic policy by Latin American governments would signify that virtually all the multilateral aid and stabilization efforts since the 1982 debt crisis would be rendered futile. Sovereign nations cannot be coaxed into doing what is in their own interest, and even though free trade is generally in the interests of the vast majority of people in rich and poor countries alike, there are circumstances in which the interests of the North and South diverge. This may be such a case, and we have to consider a substantial reducation in IMF/World Bank funding efforts. As for Morales himself, he has been acting a bit more adventurous and radical than I had anticipated, caught up in enthusiasm for Hugo Chavez's revolution, perhaps, but his style of governance is about as hesitant and ambiguous as I had expected.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 22 Jul 2006, 11: 46 PM
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Culture & Travel
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This (or that) year's
January 7, 2006 ~ DeLay gives up majority leader post
January 12, 2006 ~ Alito withstands Dems' "torture"
January 16, 2006 ~ Michelle Bachelet wins in Chile
January 19, 2006 ~ Views on Iran's nuclear ambitions
January 24, 2006 ~ Fallout from Canada's election
January 31, 2006 ~ Second (& third) thoughts on Iran
February 1, 2006 ~ The State of the Union, 2006
February 8, 2006 ~ D.C. Council votes "yes," but...
February 18, 2006 ~ Checks and balances in wartime
February 22, 2006 ~
Neocons & Neolibs: chastened alike
February 28, 2006 ~
The Dubai Ports World uproar
March 14, 2006 ~ New D.C. baseball stadium unveiled
March 24, 2006 ~ In the footsteps of France?
April 7, 2006 ~ Immigration compromise fails
May 16, 2006 ~ Bush militarizes Mexican border
June 6, 2006 ~ Alan Garcia triumphs, once again
June 9, 2006 ~
Zarqawi: The death of a terrorist
July 3, 2006 ~
Election in Mexico: too close to call
July 5, 2006 ~ North Korea goes ballistic
July 28, 2006 ~ Garcia prepares to lead Peru, again
August 4, 2006 ~ Israel invades Hezbolland
September 6, 2006 ~ "Crunchy conservatives": for real?
September 25, 2006 ~ Nationalists thwart conservation
October 3, 2006 ~ Nationals: Year in review
October 29, 2006 ~ Virginia's marriage amendment
November 7, 2006 ~ The people render their verdict
November 8, 2006 ~ Republicans lose big time
November 9, 2006 ~ Allen concedes / Election post-mortem
November 13, 2006 ~ Toward consensus on Iraq?
December 1, 2006 ~ Realism and our goals in Iraq
December 6, 2006 ~ Latin America & U.S. trade policy
December 8, 2006 ~ Iraq Study Group reports
December 22, 2006 ~ Yuletide political roundup
Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.
The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:
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Also see: My blog practices.
Blog errata (Nobody's perfect.)