Archive for July, 2015

TeleSUR, ten years on, with focus


TeleSUR celebrates its tenth year of operation. And as most countries of the region continues to pursue their path of independence, it is only natural that congratulations should come from the former President of Cuba, Fidel Castro.

Over the years of its operations TeleSUR has provided news, analysis and articles seldom found in major media such as issues that affect the indigenous or the poor. or even general news on any of the not-so-small countries. And just as one of many examples that distinguishes TeleSUR, we have, Impact of ‘Ecocide’ in Guatemala’s Pasion River Runs Deep(more…)

A detective story – death of young Irish widow in Pennsylvania


A quirk of fate, curiosity, surviving old documents, and dogged investigation. And a mystery is solved.

From The Guardian we have a detective story, a story that also shines a light on desperate poverty, optimism and immigration, and reality.

This tale of migration of a young widow to Pennsylvania from her native Ireland. Irish and Catholic in this wave of migrants to the US, she would face the brutal reality of a society where bigotry towards the Irish was intense. During a time of cholera, she would suffer an untimely and at the time unexplained death. Not to give away the plot, Reburial of woman in native Ireland highlights 183-year-old murder mystery 

Of Heroines and Heroes – New World Discoveries


Good bye, Columbus. Latin America and the Caribbean continue to discover and praise their own. This week in Argentina, the President Cristina Fernández with her guest, the President Evo Morales of Bolivia unveiled a statue of an indigenous heroine who had fought against Spanish conquest, source of national pride for the remaining indigenous peoples and for the settled nationals. As TeleSURTv reports. Argentina Replaces Columbus Statue with Indigenous Heroine. An excerpt,

The two South American leaders will inaugurate a monument to independence heroine and South American guerrilla military leader Juana Azurduy.
Zerneri [the sculptor] said Azurduy led battles that were fundamental for South American independence and her legacy is part of the longstanding regional defense of Patria Grande [an integrated Latin America].
     This is a continuation of a trend in the region to recognise those who fought, and fiercely, against being dispossessed and depopulated, mainly unsuccessfully, by merciless invaders.
     The colonial tradition of a statue of Columbus continues to fade. Venezuela has its Guaicaipuro; Trinidad, its Hyarima; Cuba, its Hatuey of Hayti (Haiti and the DR) – Hatuey of those famous ‘Last Words’.
     Just as Argentina has its heroine, so too Hayti (‘Hispaniola’) has its most famous heroine, Anacaona, also celebrated then for her arietos – and she is celebrated in song.

Grace in flight


The condor, not just graceful gliding on air currents on high, but purposeful on the ground, in reducing spread of disease.

And the condor has allies, similarly not as powerful, who seek to ensure a health environment for their families and and struggle to protect their ancestral lands, their patrimony. Just one case, Indigenous Communities Resist Contamination in Peru’s Amazon. Carrion the condor can handle – but not if riddled with chemical and other contaminants.

A Long Read – capitalism and slavery, the past intrudes


The Guardian reports on an upcoming documentary on slavery and Britain’s role by the BBC, one of that corporation’s strengths, The history of British slave ownership has been buried: now its scale can be revealed.

As lead-in to the British role and experience, David Olusoga takes a brief look at genealogy, history and the US celebrity. (more…)

Jamaica, model of ‘expansionary austerity’


There is that island in the sun. But, first, a journey through turquoise waters of another tourist destination.

There we find a set of islands that comprise Greece. That country, a member of the ‘periphery’ (word of profound meaning), continues to experience its massive economic, social and emotional) Depression unleashed since 2007, in which Greek policies were not entirely blameless.

As member of the eurozone with the euro as its currency, Greece has had limited to nil options available with regard to monetary policy to deal with the economic catastrophe. Aside the fact that the country was integrated into the union with the feverish ‘connivance’ of now very ‘aggrieved’ parties. Lacking its sovereign currency, Greece could not resort to devaluation as a tool of monetary policy that might have allowed more flexibility, and minimised, or rather contained, the severity of the damage to the economy and the concomitant exacerbation of the country’s debt.  Paul Krugman, Simon Wren-Lewis, and others have also touched on this option, albeit unavailable, at the moment. (more…)

La Présidente brésilienne parle français – aux États Unis?


President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil just recently completed a long planned visit to the US. That visit had been deferred because of that delicate matter of US eavesdropping on all and sundry in Brazil, and elsewhere. The Brazilian President had been a principal target of the US eavesdropping.

The President, during her stay in the US, would explain her change of attitude at the selfless, magnanimous decision of the US to halt its spying activities toward her, and members of her government. After all, things had changed. As the news report would have it, (more…)

The man from Nola and the Canon


That classic interpretation from Wynton Marsalis.

The state of Puerto Rico, economic state, that is


For some thirty years, under Section 936 of the US tax code, the economy of Puerto Rico had benefited substantially from the influx of US corporations. While the US Congress would repeal Section 936 in August 1996, corporations would be granted a ‘breather’, a continuance of tax benefits for another ten years, expiring in 2005. That repeal of Section 936 was encouraged by the Commonwealth’s then Governor Rossello in the mistaken belief that the US Congress would promptly grant the dependency statehood.

The expiration of Section 936 would see the prompt flight of the corporations from the island to more lucrative destinations. (more…)