As a quiet example of how privatizing Social Security works in the real world, Chile’s 30-year experiment is succeeding beyond expectations. Instead of running huge deficits to fund the old “PayGo” system, private savings now exceed 50 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
The Plurinational State of Bolivia is presenting a message to the world via the United Nations: Nature should have just as many rights as human beings do. Air has a right to be clean. Water has a right to be pure. And nature has “the right to balance.” Bolivia’s ambassador to the UN, Pablo Salon, will be presenting a treaty to the UN with the goal of codifying these sentiments into international law.
The horrific, premeditated massacre of nearly a dozen children at a school in Rio de Janeiro was the work of a Islamic extremist — but the English language press is either ignoring or concealing the alleged murderer’s religious beliefs.
Socialist Venezuelan “President” Hugo Chavez prompted ridicule and concern about his well being after suggesting in a speech that “capitalism” and “imperialism” may have ended life on Mars, adding the possible demise of Martian civilization to a long list of ills the revolutionary leader blames on free markets.
While U.S. President Barack Obama’s trip to Latin America hogs the media spotlight in news coverage of the region, the nations on the Southern continent made their new regional government official on March 11 as the Union Of South American Nations (UNASUR or UNASUL) treaty entered into force. Basing the supranational institution on the European Union model, further integration is still planned and already underway as two socialists were elected to lead the union.
Under the guise of supposed emergencies, outgoing “lame-duck” Venezuelan legislators voted overwhelmingly on December 17 to give socialist President Hugo Chavez dictatorial powers to rule by decree for the next year and a half in a bill being referred to as the “enabling law.”
Mark Twain, one of America’s greatest satirists, once observed, “Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it." Marxists, however, believe that man can do anything and that class enemies can be responsible for anything — now including inclement weather.
Hugo Chavez, the brutal Marxist leader of Venezuela, has faced a rocky road in his effort to emulate the career of Fidel Castro. The Venezuelan middle class, opposition newspapers and radio stations, and political groups accustomed to the nation’s tradition of democracy have all resisted the tentacles of his octopus, dealing stinging rebukes to his claim to represent all the people of Venezuela.
The madness of the courts and the greed of trial lawyers are proverbial. The woman who won a huge award from McDonald’s when she spilled hot coffee on her lap has become, perhaps, the archetypical example of litigation run wild. Now McDonald’s again finds itself making headlines in a lawsuit over conduct that seems safe and ordinary to most of us.
Nowadays it seems rare to read a news story with a happy ending, between tales of economic disaster across the world and violent outbursts from jihadists, protestors, and criminals. Fortunately, today (October 13) we celebrate the ongoing rescue of the 33 trapped miners in Chile, of which 14 have already been saved and the 15th rescue is underway. At the rate the miners are being brought up, it seems likely they should all be on safe ground by tomorrow.
Voters in Brazil this weekend had a choice between three leftist candidates for president, two of whom will now be facing each other in a runoff election after no contender reached the necessary 50 percent to win automatically in the first round. And in São Paulo, voters sent Tiririca (Grumpy) the clown to Congress with an astounding 1.3 million votes — almost twice the amount of his nearest competitor anywhere in the nation.