Tag Archives: Brazil

Brazil: the day after

Our Brazilian friends are going to be needing us, a lot, in the coming years. We, and what is left of global civil society, have to be prepared and give shelter to those under attack.

By Francesc Badia i Dalmases.  Published 10-27-2018 by openDemocracy

“Courage is what gives meaning to freedom” reads this graffiti on the walls of the Cachoeira public university, in the state of Bahia, pictured in September 2018. Image: Francesc Badia. All rights reserved.

 

 

We have to prepare for the day after.

Brazil is already suffering from a tide of unbearable verbal and symbolic violence, and the incendiary hate speeches are already claiming their share of victims. Bolsonaro’s victory seems indisputable and is forcing us to get ready for a double action.

The first thing will be to protect ourselves and prevent verbal attacks from turning violent under the cloak of euphoria for the victory of a candidate who considers the losers not ideological or political rivals but enemies who must be eliminated. Communist worms, they call them. Continue reading

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Coke, Nestle Near Ownership of World’s Second Largest Aquifer

A concerted push is underway in South America that could see the Guarani Aquifer, one of the world’s largest reserves of fresh water, soon fall into the hands of transnational corporations such as Coca-Cola and Nestle.

By Elliott Gabriel. Published 2-26-2018 by MintPress News

The Guarani Aquifer. Image: Public Domain via Wilimedia Commons

 

A concerted push is underway in South America that could see one of the world’s largest reserves of fresh water soon fall into the hands of transnational corporations such as Coca-Cola and Nestle. According to reports, talks to privatize the Guarani Aquifer – a vast subterranean water reserve lying beneath Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay – have already reached an advanced stage. The deal would grant a consortium of U.S. and Europe-based conglomerates exclusive rights to the aquifer that would last over 100 years.

Named after the Guarani indigenous people, the Guarani Aquifer is the world’s second largest underground water reserve and is estimated to be capable of sustainably providing the world’s population with drinking water for up to 200 years. Environmental groups, social movements, and land defenders warn that the exploitation of the freshwater reserve could see the 460,000-square mile (1.2 million sq. km.) reservoir sacrificed for the short-term profits of agribusiness, energy, and food-and-drink giants. Continue reading

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Accusing Facebook of ‘Effectively Banning Professional Journalism,’ Brazil’s Largest Paper Ditches Platform

Facebook has become “inhospitable terrain for those who want to offer quality content,” said Folha de S. Paulo’s executive editor

By Jake Johnson, staff writer for CommonDreams. Published 2-9-2018

In an article published on Thursday, Folha—which has over 5.7 million followers on Facebook—noted that over the past several months it had begun to detect a sharp decline in interactions not just with its own Facebook posts, but with those of other major Brazilian newspapers as well. (Photo: Legal Loop)

Accusing Facebook of discriminating against “quality” content and accelerating the spread of “fake news” with its newly-unveiled algorithm, Brazil’s largest newspaper Folha de S. Paulo—which boasts a print and online subscriber base of 285,000 people—has announced that it will no longer publish its articles on the social media platform.

“In effectively banning professional journalism from its pages in favor of personal content and opening space for ‘fake news’ to proliferate, Facebook became inhospitable terrain for those who want to offer quality content like ours,” Sérgio Dávila, Folha’s executive editor, said in a statement. Continue reading

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Happy Birthday CIA: 7 Truly Terrible Things the Agency Has Done in 70 Years

By Carey Wedler. Published 9-18-2017 by The Anti-Media

The seal of the Central Intelligence Agency inlaid in the floor of the main lobby of the Original Headquarters Building. Photo by user:Duffman (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

On Monday, President Trump tweeted birthday wishes to the Air Force and the CIA. Both became official organizations 70 years ago on September 18, 1947, with the implementation of the National Security Act of 1947.

After spending years as a wartime intelligence agency called the Office of Strategic Services, the agency was solidified as a key player in the federal government’s operations with then-President Harry Truman’s authorization. Continue reading

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Brazil’s tide against corruption swells

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Calls for Brazilian President Michel Temer’s ouster are growing louder due to allegations of government corruption. Pilar Olivares/Reuters

Susan Rose-Ackerman, Yale University

Brazil’s political turmoil is going into overdrive, exacerbated in recent days by the discovery of a tape recording allegedly of President Michel Temer approving some US$600,000 in hush money to pay off a disgraced political ally. Temer denies wrongdoing and is rebuffing calls to resign even though the new reports are consistent with others that implicate the Brazilian leader and his associates. Along with leaked audio of damning conversations, a prominent news outlet has published photos said to show the wads of cash used for the payoffs. The Conversation

Despite the severity of this crisis, as a scholar of the political economy of corruption, I see some grounds for optimism. As Paul Lagunes and I have previously written for The Conversation, the ongoing investigations and convictions demonstrate that, overall, Brazil’s independent prosecutors and judges remain deeply committed to investigate and punish high-level corruption. They have strong public support, and their efforts to end the impunity of the business and political elite are beginning to succeed. Continue reading

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Safe with ‘Oligarchs and Imperialists’ in US, Brazil’s New President Admits Coup Plot

Ousted President Dilma Rousseff wouldn’t enact austerity roadmap, so “a process was established which culminated with me being installed as president of the republic,” Temer says

By Andrea Germanos, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 9-23-2016

Newly-installed Brazilian President Michel Temer speaking this week. (Photo: Agência Brasil Fotografias/flickr/cc)

Newly-installed Brazilian President Michel Temer speaking this week. (Photo: Agência Brasil Fotografias/flickr/cc)

Proponents of her ouster argued that former Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff was targeted and ultimately booted from office for budgetary wrongdoing or, ironically, corruption.

But fresh comments by new, unelected president Michel Temer himself back up claims that her impeachment was politically motivated, specifically, that Rousseff wouldn’t enact the austerity-promoting, welfare-slashing economic platform Temer unveiled from his party, the Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB), in October when he was vice president. Continue reading

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‘Not a Good Day for Democracy’: Senate Approves Impeachment Trial for Brazil’s Rousseff

Her ouster—an effort she’s calling a coup— would be end of 13 years of rule by leftist Workers’ Party, and would leave in place unelected Temer

By Andrea Germanos, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 8-10-2016

Demostrators hold signs during a march in Rio on August 5, 2016 . (Photo: Mídia NINJA/flickr/cc)

Demostrators hold signs during a march in Rio on August 5, 2016 . (Photo: Mídia NINJA/flickr/cc)

Brazil’s Senate on Wednesday voted to hold an impeachment trial for suspended President Dilma Rousseff, an effort that could mark the end of 13 years of rule by her leftist Workers’ Party.

“Today is not a good day for our democracy,” said Senator Paulo Rocha, an ally of the nation’s first female president. He added that “there is a political alliance that smells of a coup” working against her. Continue reading

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Superbugs, Sewage, and Scandal: Are Rio Olympics Poised for Disaster?

Companies at center of grafting scheme construct Olympic Village, raw sewage pours into Rio de Janeiro, and protests sweep nation

By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 8-1-2016

Thousands of dead fish float in the Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon, where the Olympics rowing and canoeing competitions will take place, in 2015. (Photo: Marcelo Sayao/EPA)

Thousands of dead fish float in the Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon, where the Olympics rowing and canoeing competitions will take place, in 2015. (Photo: Marcelo Sayao/EPA)

A biology professor has simple advice for athletes and tourists descending on Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for the Olympics’ start on Friday: “Don’t put your head underwater.”

Dr. Valerie Harwood, chair of the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of South Florida, remarked on the dangers posed by Rio’s water to AP, which reported Monday that a 16-months-long study revealed that “the waterways of Rio de Janeiro are as filthy as ever, contaminated with raw human sewage teeming with dangerous viruses and bacteria.” Continue reading

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Venezuela Accuses US of Plotting Coup, Declares State of Emergency

‘Washington is activating measures at the request of Venezuela’s fascist right, who are emboldened by the coup in Brazil,’ said the nation’s president.

By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 5-14-2016

Dilma Rousseff receiving a picture of Hugo Chávez from Nicolás Maduro. Photo: Valter Campanato/ABr (Agência Brasil) [CC BY 3.0 br], via Wikimedia Commons

Dilma Rousseff receiving a picture of Hugo Chávez from Nicolás Maduro. Photo: Valter Campanato/ABr (Agência Brasil) [CC BY 3.0 br], via Wikimedia Commons

Venezuela’s leftist president Nicolas Maduro announced a 60-day state of emergency on Friday evening and accused the U.S. of plotting with right-wing groups within the country to overthrow his government.

On the same day, unnamed D.C. officials warned of a coming “meltdown” in Venezuela. Continue reading

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Brazil’s Elite Move Ahead with ‘Coup’ as Rousseff Impeached by Lower House

Workers’ Party president Dilma Rousseff is not accused of any crimes—while right-wing politicians voting to impeach her are investigated for corruption

By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 4-18-2016

Dilma Rousseff at the 2010 Workers Party Convention. Photo: Valter Campanato/ABr (Agência Brasil) [CC BY 3.0 br], via Wikimedia Commons

Dilma Rousseff at the 2010 Workers’ Party Convention. Photo: Valter Campanato/ABr (Agência Brasil) [CC BY 3.0 br], via Wikimedia Commons

Brazil’s embattled leftist president Dilma Roussef watched on Sunday as right-wing opponents in congress voted in overwhelming numbers to impeach her, drawing cries of “coup, coup, coup!” from her supporters in the Workers’ Party (PT).

367 of the 513 members of Brazil’s lower house voted to impeach, surpassing the two-thirds majority required to send the proposal to the senate for a vote, which is expected to take place in a few weeks.

Critics of the process immediately decried the impeachment vote. Continue reading

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