Posts Tagged ‘Michelle Bachelet’

Bad news for Chile

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

Mary O’Grady reports on how Bachelet’s policies have repercussions:
The Chile ‘Miracle’ Goes in Reverse
Investment and growth are falling, and now the government targets private schools.

To understand why the outlook for the Chilean “miracle” is so grim and investment is plummeting, look no further than this government’s obsession with holding back those who would skate ahead of the pack.

Ms. Bachelet has increased tax rates on everything from capital to consumption. One objective is to soak the investor class, making it poorer so that income inequality goes down. But it is more likely that income disparities will go up since the rich have ways to shelter income while the poor depend on job creation from investment to earn their daily bread and build wealth.

Additionally, Bachelt will end school vouchers,

The new law, which passed the lower house last month and now goes to the senate, would prohibit students from using vouchers to attend for-profit schools and prohibit schools that receive public subsidies from charging parents a co-payment. What is more, schools will no longer be allowed to select students because, apparently, it is “unfair” for gifted children to learn at their own speed.

Vouchers make it harder to indoctrinate kids, too.

Chile had a good run.

So much for that.

Chile: Bachelet, going left as promised

Monday, May 5th, 2014

Last November I predicted that, if Michelle Bachelet made good on her campaign promises, it would be disastrous not only for Chile, but also for the region.

She’s on her way:
Assault on the Chilean Miracle
President Bachelet wants to raise the corporate tax rate to 35% from 20%.
(emphasis added)

Three decades of fast growth—led by liberal economic policies—have made Chile the most prosperous country in Latin America. Its annual per capita income of more than $19,000 is up from $5,000 in 1990. The percentage of Chileans living in poverty stands at 14.4%, down from 45% in 1985.

The country also stands out politically in the region for its adherence to a rule of law that protects minority rights and eschews banana-republic populism.

Now Ms. Bachelet and her minions in Congress are signaling a game change that suggests a return to the political polarization of the early 1970s. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that they see their legislative majorities as their chance to finally ram the utopian dream of the late President Salvador Allende down the collective Chilean throat.

Sen. Jaime Quintana, spokesman for the New Majority coalition in the upper chamber, said as much in March, when the opposition complained that the ruling coalition was using a “steamroller” in Congress. Not “a steamroller,” Mr. Quintana said. “We are going to use a high-powered steam shovel because it is necessary to destroy the antiquated foundations of the neo-liberal model of the dictatorship.”

In addition to raising the corporate tax rate to 35% from 20%, Bachelet wants to eliminate the FUT,

a key provision in the tax code that allows companies to delay paying taxes on earnings if those earnings are reinvested rather than paid out. Known by its Spanish initials as the “FUT,” this provision has provided much of the capital that fueled Chile’s rapid growth in the last three decades.

Wait until she amends the Constitution and starts overspending the mining profits on social programs and running a deficit.

And don’t forget she’s invited Putin already.

Chile goes down, and the Pacific Alliance is o-v-e-r.

Chile: Bienvenido, Putin

Saturday, May 3rd, 2014

Now that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stopped in Chile during his tour of Latin America, Bachelet invites Putin to visit Chile

Chilean President Michelle Bachelet on Wednesday invited Russia’s Vladimir Putin to visit the Andean nation and the bases that both countries have in Antarctica with the aim of moving forward on scientific cooperation.

And it’s not just science,

[Chilean Foreign Minister Heraldo] Muñoz also joined Lavrov at a meeting with Chilean Defense Minister Jorge Burgos to discuss “the potential for military exchanges.”

$5 says Russia comes out ahead on any of this.

UPDATE:
Linked to by Babalu. Thank you!


Mike Hammer goes to Chile

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Not this Mike Hammer,

this one:

Grew up in Latin America,
Georgetown U international relations graduate,
100% fluent in Spanish,
and personable.

Photo of Ambassador @MikeHammerUSA at a meeting presenting credentials to Pres. Bachelet at La Moneda.

Certainly a much more qualified diplomat than the Noah Mamet guy they were thinking of sending to Argentina!

Biden goes to Chile

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Joe Biden went to Michelle Bachelet’s second inauguration and managed to do a decent job: Read my article, Biden goes to Chile, at Da Tech Guy Blog.

#Chile: Bachelet’s inauguration LIVEFEED

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Michelle Bachelet inauguration livefeed

The Venezuela Crisis Exposes Political Split in Chile
Ruling Coalition Divided over President Nicolás Maduro’s Crackdown on Protestors
, since Maduro will be attending Bachelet’s inauguration, and is expected to canvass other dignitaries for support, having called for a meeting of UNASUR,

The Venezuelan leader has called for an emergency meeting in Santiago of the South American regional grouping, UNASUR, which is heavily influenced by Venezuela and its closest allies, Bolivia, Ecuador and Argentina. The meeting is expected to take place following the inauguration.

Chilean President-elect Michelle Bachelet

fashioned her wide-ranging “New Majority” coalition to beat an incumbent conservative government in recent elections. She is now caught between her own Socialist party, communists and other hard-left supporters who back Mr. Maduro, and center-right Christian Democrats who blame the Venezuelan leader for a heavy-handed crackdown.

Socialist and communist party lawmakers in Chile blocked Mr. Walker’s resolution in the lower house, denying that abuses are taking place and casting Mr. Maduro as the victim.

Joe Biden’s in Chile for the inauguration where

he called the unstable situation in Venezuela “alarming” and said the Caracas government lacked even basic respect for human rights.

Joe will meet with presidents Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia, Ollanta Humala of Peru, and Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico; he’ll probably run into Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro. Let’s hope he doesn’t bow.

Bachelet has already proposed increasing corporate taxes and close tax loopholes to sponsor a system of free college education, changes to the constitution, and more spending to address inequality.

Venezuela: Today’s headlines

Sunday, February 16th, 2014

The Scotsman: Venezuela: Third night of riots over dead students

WSJ: Venezuela Opposition Leader Is Sought
Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said a police manhunt was under way for Leopoldo Lopez, the hard-line opposition leader behind antigovernment demonstrations that ended with three deaths
.

Reuters: Venezuela frees some student protesters, unrest continues

Yahoo: Venezuela music star Dudamel targeted by opposition critics

AP: Twitter reports image blocking in Venezuela

MercoPress: Chilean president-elect Bachelet blasts Venezuelan repression and Maduro

Following the bloody events of last Wednesday, while countries such as Argentina, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua expressed their full support for the Venezuelan government of President Nicolas Maduro, others were more cautious such as Washington and the Europe Union calling for restraint and dialogue, but Chilean president-elect Michelle Bachelet openly twitted her rejection to repression, to President Maduro and called for a plebiscite.

AFP: John Kerry says US concerned about unrest in Venezuela. Official statement here.

Twitter:
#LaSalida

Livestream: NTN24

Blogs:
Altamira then and now: a Venezuelan spring?

Cuba Training Venezuelan Armed Groups

Is This the End of Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela?
In the midst of runaway violence, inflation, and shortages of basic goods, Venezuela’s youth have taken to the streets—to take on its Orwellian government.

Video in Spanish:

Chile: A step to the left

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

From The Economist:

(more…)

Chile: Left turn coming up

Monday, November 11th, 2013

My contacts in Chile agree,
Chile Is Poised to Move Sharply Left
Michele Bachelet wants to amend the constitution and expand the welfare state.

Ms. Bachelet wants to expand the welfare state. To pay for it she wants to raise corporate tax rates and to tax shareholders on retained earnings along with the dividend taxes they already pay. She would restore a role for the state in the now privatized pension system and has called for an “exhaustive review” of the Trans-Pacific Partnership that would deepen Chile’s commitment to free trade. Labor unions would get more power, and education spending would be sharply higher. Most troubling, the self-described admirer of Fidel Castro proposes changes to the constitution that would extend the reach of government and has not ruled out calling a constitutional assembly.

This, of course, would be disastrous not only for Chile, but also for the region.

The question then, is, how will Chile’s institutions hold up in the onslaught?

Chile: Matthei/Parisi vs Bachlet?

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

Gap closes between Parisi and Matthei as presidential race tightens

The way I see it, it’s Bachelet.

The election’s scheduled for November 17.