The exceptionally smart Ronald Nelson makes the right decision: read my article on Why the University of Alabama won over the Ivy League
Brad Pitt bought the movie rights to Paul Barrett’s book, Law of the Jungle: The $19 Billion Legal Battle Over Oil in the Rain Forest and the Lawyer Who’d Stop at Nothing to Win about fraudster Steven Donziger.
Rafael Correa is not happy:
He said: “Now they’ve brought out a book, Law of the Jungle, all paid for by Chevron, in which we look like savages in a country without any separation of powers. If he has any doubts, we invite him to come to Ecuador and scoop up with his hands the oil which still lies in pools 30 years later and which was left by that corrupt oil company Chevron-Texaco, continuing to pollute our forest. Given the clarity of the facts, anybody who signs up to or collaborates with Chevron is an accomplice to that company’s corruption.”
One with misspellings, complete with photo of Brad’s 2012 trip to Lago Agrio,
— JusticiaParaEcuador (@Justice_Ecuador) May 5, 2015
One grammatically correct,
— JusticiaParaEcuador (@Justice_Ecuador) May 6, 2015
In my original post, I snarked about Brad Pitt. I reconsidered, and apologize for unduly casting aspersions.
Rachel Cunliffe looks at The dark side of price controls in Venezuela
Shortages of basic goods, from food to fuel, have led to a sharp increase in crime and situations “where police officers are gunned down for their weapons, trucks ambushed for merchandise and commuters held up for cellphones.” Now the shortage of motorcycle parts is so severe that bikers are being attacked for their vehicles, and in some cases murdered.
This is the reality of price fixing and currency controls.
Read the whole thing.
The central government prefers to blame violence on drug traffickers and politically-motivated paramilitaries. But that view isn’t that far from the truth: these criminal gangs sort-of fit the basic definition of a paramilitary body, and many of those groups (such as the infamous “El Picure” gang) are involved in drug-related activities. However, the political angle the government desperately wants to stick onto the problem simply doesn’t match the evidence available.
Our crime epidemic is surpassing all estimations, to the point that Venezuela is (according to the Brazilian think tank Instituto Igarape) the second most murderous country in the planet. If you are being murdered, there is a high chance you are in Venezuela.
Linked to by Rantburg. Thank you!
The Estadio Nacional in Brasilia, the most expensive of the stadiums, is being used as a bus parking lot.
Business Insider: Brazil’s $3 billion World Cup stadiums are becoming white elephants a year later. Why? Several were built in cities that don’t even have top-rated teams. Add to that the distance to major urban areas, and the expense of holding events at those venues.
Some stadiums are still are paying for the construction, and then there are contracts:
The club team Atlético Mineiro plays its games at the old Independencia stadium in Belo Horizonte — it can’t make money playing at the new Estádio Mineirão because of its contract with the stadium’s owners, the AP reports.
Many – including myself – saw it coming, prior to the WC. In all, another one for Capt. Louis Renault.
We talked about this in Silvio Canto’s podcast last night:
— Fausta (@Fausta) May 14, 2015
In other news, Brazil is ranked 60th on education in a list of 76 countries (link in Portuguese) by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Argentina (62d), Colombia (67th) and Peru (71th) did even worse.
Recently, Pope Francis
- met with Peruvian priest Gustavo Gutierrez, the self-declared founder of liberation theology.
- Restored to the priesthood Miguel d’Escoto, the Sandinista who expounded liberation theology as a priest and turned Nicaragua into a Cuban-ruled hellhole. D’Escoto also considers Fidel Castro a saint.
- Brokered the “easing” of U.S.-Cuba relations that left the Cuban dissidents out in the dark.
- Welcomed Raul Castro for an hour-long private audience.
- UPDATE: Recognizes the Palestinian state.
To quote the estimable Mark Steyn, “If he were working for the other side, what exactly would he be doing differently?”
More on the Pope and liberation theology at IBD: Liberation Theology’s Comeback Comes With A KGB Caveat
Linked to by Babalu. Thank you!
The “more” includes growing ties with Mexican drug cartels – which are in charge of human traffic across the border – and the terrorist group for bringing into the U.S. Islamic terrorists, in exchange for weapons.
Read my article, Hezbollah in Latin America: $100million a year, and more
y Pacasso trae el Exótico Hotel Marigold 2
Back in the days of The Sopranos, “It’s over for the little guy”. Now there’s real muscle doing the protection rackets.
“Nearly all the merchants have left. They decided to leave before they got killed or had to pay the ‘war tax,'” said Sheila, methodically slicing bananas and tossing them into boiling oil.
The “tax,” in her case, is $20 a month, which she pays the gangsters so they will let her stay in business.
. . .
The maras now have some 100,000 members in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.
A MORE PEACEFUL AND PROSPEROUS HONDURAS? Not quite in the works yet (emphasis added):
President Orlando Hernández’s speech promoted his plan for domestic development. While detailing the new initiatives for the prosperity of his people, the president seemed to lack equal detail when addressing questions of what Honduras can do to tackle the global illegal drug issues in which it is entangled. Only when his administration takes on the problems that Honduras is facing on a transnational level will President Orlando Hernández be able to meet the standards necessary to join the Alliance for Prosperity, and make use of the admittedly questionable advantages it offers.
Within two weeks of Haiti’s January 2010 earthquake, the word had already gone out from the State Department that Bill Clinton would be in charge of U.S. reconstruction efforts. “That means,” one individual told me and I reported in a Jan. 25, 2010 column, “if you don’t have Clinton connections, you won’t be in the game.”
The “game,” as my source called it, meant securing hundreds of millions of dollars in no-bid contracts from the State Department’s U.S. Agency for International Development and grants from multilateral institutions like the InterAmerican Development Bank, which gets the bulk of its funding from the U.S.
The Clintons deny that Bill’s power over State’s purse was used to secure donations to the Clinton Foundation. But at least two contributors who gave more than $1 million as I described in a March 9 column, including the InterAmerican Development Bank, benefited from U.S. earthquake aid.
No bid contracts, carte blanche from the Obama administration, Bill handling hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars . . . as Capt. Louis Renault said,