After three weeks of repression, fifteen dead, at least 60 reported tortured and more than eight hundred detained, including opposition leaders and reporters, the Venezuelan students have at least shown the world what little respect the Maduro administration has for the human and civil rights of the people.
The protests come from people who realize that their future has been robbed by a narco-kleptocracy. Almost anyone in Venezuela that has aspirations to a better future through education, hard work, you name it, questions more or less actively the regime.
Heisenberg: Chapo Guzmán, la conexión argentina
What could possibly go wrong? Argentina Plans Price-Control Measures
President Cristina Kirchner has pledged tougher measures against businesses that raise prices, as her administration tries to stabilize an economy suffering from double-digit inflation and hard currency shortages.
Two Years After Expropriation, Argentina and Repsol Sign Accord on YPF
The agreement establishes compensation for the Spanish oil firm of $5 billion in dollar-denominated government bonds, a debt that will be settled by 2033, at the latest, if the bonds are held to maturity
Upcoming meme alert: Expect MSNBC to start referring to the Venezuelan demonstrations (if they ever notice them) as “attempts at a soft coup”, Presidenta argentina habla de ‘golpe suave’ en Venezuela
The military police are not part of the armed forces, and yet they operate according to military principles of rank and discipline. They cannot strike or unionize, and are subject to a military-style penal code (meaning transgressions at work can be treated as mutiny or treason, and officers are tried in a special court). They are prohibited from “revealing facts or documents that can discredit the police or disrupt hierarchy or discipline.”
They also can’t openly disapprove of the acts of civilian authorities from the executive, legislative or judicial branches of government, and are forbidden to express their personal political opinions.
“This is a site on par with Dinosaur National Monument here in the United States, a whole hillside littered with dinosaur skeletons. We seem to have the same thing except with whales here in Chile.”
From The Economist story (also posted under Panama, below): Caribbean ports and the Panama canal
Brazil and Cuba agreed in 2009 to develop the port of Mariel, west of Havana, through a partnership between Brazil’s Grupo Odebrecht and a state-owned Cuban company, with PSA International of Singapore as operator. The port has been dredged to a comfortable 18 metres and was inaugurated in January. But a major transshipment role is blocked by the American trade embargo: ships which have been to Cuba are barred for six months from American ports. More time to complete the Panama expansion means more time for the embargo to lift.
— Eric Farnsworth (@ericfarns) February 26, 2014
The new locks will accommodate ships which can take almost three times that load and need a draft of over 15 metres.
These monsters will slash shipping costs for Pacific cargo en route for Atlantic ports, and boost the 6% share of world trade that the Panama canal now claims.
The WSJ lists Venezuela’s Opposition Leaders
University students have been the backbone of the antigovernment movement, but demonstrators recently have looked to Leopoldo López, a former mayor of the Chacao district of Caracas and leader of the Popular Will party. Read more about the opposition to President Nicolás Maduro.
Death toll from Venezuela street protests rises to 18
Anti-government protests continue to Caracas and across Venezuela with ongoing battles between protesters and police claiming the life of a national guardsman
‘A Perfect Storm’: The Failure of Venezuela’s New President
He was hand-picked by Hugo Chávez, but Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has lost control of the country’s economy. Vast protests have been the result, but the government in Caracas has shown no signs of bending.
The week’s posts and podcast:
Latin America at the #Oscars2014
At Da Tech Guy Blog:
What would it take for Latin America’s left-wing populist economies to turn around?