Archive for the ‘Fausta’s blog’ Category

Cuba, the “Not Ready For Prime Time Civil Society” country

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Read all about Cuba, the “Not Ready For Prime Time Civil Society” country

Biden: Like taking a binky from a baby

Friday, April 10th, 2015

To quote Duane,
“. . .the thought of pulling a pacifier from a baby’s mouth and inserting it unwashed, sterilized or otherwise de-cootied into my mouth is a thought that has never entered my head.”

Biden puts Bloomberg’s grandson’s pacifier in his mouth

Craig Ramsay for the win!

Coming up next: The Summit of the Americas circus

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

Coming up next: The Summit of the Americas circus

Read all about it here.

Venezuela: Opposition leaders’ wives to attend the Summit of the Americas

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

The wives of jailed opposition leaders Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma will be attending the upcoming Summit later this week.

Lilian Tintori and Mitzy Capriles will meet with NGOs, and Ms Tintori will be a panelist at the “Civil society and civilian actors” forum.

Let’s hope they don’t get stopped at the airport.

Nicaragua’s steps to dictatorship

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Sergio Ramírez at El País on how Daniel Ortega is taking Nicaragua towards dictatorship (link in Spanish).
After 9 years of Ortega in power,

48% of the population subsists on less than $2 a day, and in that group, half subsists on less than $1 a day. Nicaragua’s on the bottom three of the Latin American misery index, along with Haiti and Honduras.

Coming elections?

Ortega, or his wife, will win the 2017 presidential elections.

But family Governments always end up as big political disasters. Tensions will turn up and increase as hopes in Ortega’s populist rhetoric wear out, particularly since Venezuela’s aide comes to and end as that country faces plummeting oil prices, shortages, inflation, and a swelling short-term foreign debt.

Ramírez is deeply pessimistic about the proposed Nicaragua Canal, too. He accuses Ortega of turning over the defense of Nicaragua’s national sovereignty to Wang Jing and the Chinese

Another breaking point will be the failure of the canal project, now seen as a huge hope, which will become a cause for frustration once it is proven to be a merciless lie.

By which time, Ortega will be rich enough to live in impunity.

Coming up next: State Dept. To Fly Central American Children Into US

Saturday, April 4th, 2015

I first found this at the Daily Caller,

Any permanent resident, parolee or illegal immigrant granted or in the process of being granted a work permit under President Barack Obama’s recent executive order or his deferred action policy, who has children under 21 living in Honduras, Guatemala or El Salvador can apply for the program.

Ponder that for a moment: Hondurans, Guatemalans and Salvadorans are to be granted exceptional privileges above all other immigrants into the U.S., and the State Department and Department of Homeland Security will administer the program.

Immigration and State Department officials explained how the program will work on an invite-only teleconference call Tuesday that was not open to the press and was mostly attended by groups known to advocate for illegal immigrants

They’ll get free DNA tests, one-way tickets to the U.S., and, once here, they are allowed refugee status, and will be provided free education, medical care, living expenses and food stamps.

Judicial Watch reports:
DHS Launches “Family Reunification,” Refugee Program for Central Americans (emphasis added),

A U.S.-based parent will initiate the application to bring his or her child in from any of the three Central American countries. To qualify they must be a permanent resident, a parolee or a beneficiary of Obama’s recent amnesty or deferred action. Many have probably lived illegally in the U.S. for years. The only out-of-pocket cost is for a DNA test to assure the child belongs to the applicant but Uncle Sam will reimburse the money if the result is positive. A U.S. official will interview the child, then a medical exam and “cultural orientation” will be conducted before the minor flies to the U.S. Once in the U.S. the illegal alien will get “resettlement assistance,” the State Department official confirmed during the teleconference.

If the applicant doesn’t qualify for the more desirable refugee status he or she can be considered for parole, a USCIS official explained in the teleconference, which was attended mostly by immigrant rights groups known for advocating on behalf of illegal aliens. Refugee status is a form of protection offered to those who are deemed of special humanitarian concern to the United States. Parole allows individuals who may be otherwise inadmissible to come to the U.S. on a case-by-case basis for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit. The State Department official assured that applicants need not express or document a credible fear to qualify under CAM because “we want to make sure this program is open to as many people as possible.”

Notice how the age limit is 21, while voting age is 18.

Rule of law (the restriction of the arbitrary exercise of power by subordinating it to well-defined and established laws) goes out the window.

I want to know, when did Congress fund this?

Meanwhile, God help you if you were adopted and your parents didn’t apply for your citizenship.

Cuba Forever, Indiana Never

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
George Orwell, Animal Farm (1945)

Cuba Forever, Indiana Never: Cuomo Hypocrisy on Gay Rights Smells Like Politics Liz Mair writes on Dem blindness: Andrew Cuomo bans all non-essential, taxpayer-funded travel to Indiana but is heading to Cuba – at taxpayer expense, of course,

Cuba’s record on LGBT rights has improved over the years. However, it was so dismal to start with that this can hardly be surprising. Shortly after seizing power, the Castro regime sent tens of thousands of gay men to labor camps. It later forced HIV-positive people and those with AIDS into facilities in which they were separated against their will from the public-at-large.

Even after these worst abuses fell by the wayside, LGBT individuals as well as LGBT advocates in Cuba have faced ongoing harassment from government authorities in the form of detention, arrest, and physical assault. Cuba also initially opposed, then abstained from voting on, a 2010 UN proposal to treat “sexual orientation” as an especially objectionable motive for murder—a position it is hard to believe Cuomo would endorse.
. . .
A 2013 report by the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association indicates that in Cuba, not only can people refuse to bake cakes for gay couples if they so desire, there is also no “constitutional prohibition of discrimination based on sexual orientation.” Only very recently did Cuba ban discrimination in employment against gays and lesbians.

Furthermore, in Cuba, same-sex couples enjoy none of the rights of marriage, let alone the ability to marry. Moreover, joint adoption is not an option for gay couples on the island. Gay couples in Cuba also lack the option of civil unions, domestic partnerships and similar arrangements.

Cuomo, once in Cuba, will likely be chaperoned by the official Communist sexologist and daughter of Raul Castro, Mariela, she who said the United States “must be dreaming” if it thinks easing sanctions would bring about a market economy.

I suggest that Cuomo read Before Night Falls: A Memoir before he lands in Cuba.

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In other Indiana news,
Nets Devote 3x More Time to Indiana Law Than Hillary E-Mail Server Wipe, since one has to do with national security and the other one doesn’t.

Your Questions On Indiana’s Religious Freedom Bill, Answered (h/t Gay Patriot)

Yes, it’s April Fools’ Day

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Yes, it’s April Fools’ Day, and there is bad news, and good news.

Read all about it here.

Would Peru go for Chavismo?

Monday, March 30th, 2015

Mary O’Grady writes about the reasons behind Peru’s recent economic success: A market model that allows for

  • a vibrant consumer class that is entrepreneurial and creative
  • openness to imports
  • structural reforms that included ending a punishing system of import tariffs and quotas
  • fiscally conservative governance.

However,

Still, the downturn in commodity prices is eating into growth and the slowdown that began last year continues. Market forecasts for GDP growth are in the 3% range for 2015. Peru’s economy is performing far better than most in the region, but lackluster is not what Peruvians have come to expect.

The obvious answer to this lethargy is more aggressive trade opening on key products like sugar and corn, more tax cutting and deregulation. But Mr. Humala’s popularity is sagging and he is unlikely to do anything bold. Meanwhile, opponents of economic freedom will turn slower growth into opportunity by linking stagnant incomes in the market economy and corruption.

As O’Grady points out, this means Peru Is Chavismo’s Next American Target
Corruption scandals give the left an opening in the 2016 presidential election.

On a seemingly unrelated topic,
The Obama administration insists on easing restrictions on Cuba’s merciless Communist dictatorship while Cuba’s dependence on Venezuelan oil goes bust. Once Cuba’s economy improves cosmetically (because you can bet those in power will not give up their acquisitiveness), the Cuban propaganda machine will use this as another tool in its propaganda arsenal against market economies.

No matter how ruinous Cuban-driven Chavismo is in real life; propaganda is the only thing Cuba’s regime is good at, and it is particularly effective in Latin America.

Face it: The fact that the article talks about Chavismo – instead of Castrocommunism – itself is a success for the Cuban propaganda machine; in reality, “The Venezuelan regime is a puppet controlled by the Cubans.”

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Related reading:
Hernando de Soto’s excellent book, The Other Path, available on Kindle for under $10, and Ian Bremmer’s The End of the Free Market: Who Wins the War Between States and Corporations?

How a German trial relates to the #Nisman case

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Roya Hakakian explains Germany’s commitment to justice:
Iran’s Assassins in Berlin
The determination of the prosecutor, the press, and the Iranian exile community made all the difference in Germany, where the courts ruled against Iran’s highest leaders.

[Investigator Bruno] Jost had a major advantage. He was investigating in the shadow of the World War II blunders and the fundamental transformations that the German justice system had undergone. By the time the trial was set to begin, Tehran was no longer the focus of popular attention. Now, it was Germany, herself, on trial, with something grand to prove about her own credibility and the authenticity of her reformation.

In contrast,

Whether the same spirit can cross over into another continent to move the course of the Argentines’ investigation is to be seen. But this much is for sure: The sum of the 1994 AMIA bombing, Iran’s lethal role, the misconduct of former President Carlos Menem, an alleged conspiracy to halt the nuclear negotiations, the mysterious murder of Alberto Nisman, and the alleged corruption of President Cristina Kirchner or the Argentine Intelligence all add up to something larger. It is about Argentina herself, the state of her republic, and whether the ghosts of its dirty past are truly buried or still lurking in the shadows.

This us a must-read.