The Failed Promise Of Aid, The End Of Austerity?
October 14, 2019 7:53 AM   Subscribe

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — President Lenín Moreno and leaders of Ecuador's indigenous peoples struck a deal late Sunday to cancel a disputed austerity package and end nearly two weeks of protests that have paralyzed the economy and left seven dead. (Us News and World Report) Analysis: The empire strikes back in Ecuador, and what it means for Scotland (Common Space) Baghdad (AFP) - Iraq's deadliest wave of protests since the 2003 ouster of dictator Saddam Hussein has made the country vulnerable to a battle for influence between its two main competing allies, the United States and Iran, analysts say. (Yahoo) Crises in Iraq and Haiti Expose the Failure of Militarized Neoliberalism: American installed governments face opposition around the word (Common Dreams) Journalist's killing fuels ire of Haiti protesters (Euronews) “After an earthquake struck in 2010, the US pledged to help rebuild the Caribbean country. A decade later, nothing better symbolises the failure of these efforts than the story of a new port that was promised, but never built“ The Failure Of US Aid (Guardian)
posted by The Whelk (7 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
Any updates on Greece? They went in big for austerity, but recent stories I have seen have concentrated on their right-wing/neo-Nazi problems.
posted by wenestvedt at 8:32 AM on October 14, 2019 [2 favorites]

That Haiti article - my god, every word is damning.

A 2011 US government report declared: “With its proximity to Miami, a new container port in this region could become a hub for the north,” which had “untapped potential” in light manufacturing, such as garments, and in certain kinds of high-value agriculture. Companies such as the major Korean textile manufacturer Sae-A, which became one of Caracol’s first tenants, would be able to ship in cotton and ship out apparel. “A port – that was the carrot for these companies,” Jake Johnston, a Haiti expert at the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), a liberal thinktank, told me.

But the location was attractive for other reasons, too. “Land was readily available in the north,” and the “hundreds of small farmers who had to be moved” to make way for the park and port “were far less resistant than the wealthy landowners in the capital,” Johnston wrote in 2014.

Which in turn reminds me of something else I was reading: Walking With The Comrades, by Arundhati Roy, which describes the Indian state's long struggle to steal mineral-rich land from the millions of forest-dwelling people who live there now. (Take-away - the Naxalite/forest-dweller resistance is a lot better than the Naxalite manifestos, also virtually all mainstream media lies constantly about the resistance.)

You look at the history of the world and it's a long saga of the rich and powerful just....taking shit. Moving people on, murdering them if they refuse. The base of every great fortune is a heap of murdered peasants.

And for that matter, land ownership is the last refuge of ordinary people - you can see it in Sylvia Federici's Caliban and the Witch - when the peasants still have their land, they can ride out hard times, they can do wage labor as and when they please. When they're expropriated, they are at the mercy of the rich and have to work for whatever cash they can get.
posted by Frowner at 8:36 AM on October 14, 2019 [22 favorites]

It's good to read some more on all of this, I must admit to having been a little confused as to Moreno and his whole deal recently, thanks.

It's certainly nice to see the IMF take a hit of any kind as well.
Against Neoliberalism and For Humanity is not a less relevant position now than in the past.
posted by Acid Communist at 8:50 AM on October 14, 2019

Well, there went the last scrap of respect I had for any living president after Carter. That quote where he admits his previous plan didn't work the first time and then commits to doing it again. Fascinating how he was appointed by the Bush administration, and the article neatly elides right over that.

Good Lord, the sheer gall of the man, and this is after his supposed rehabilitation? I'm beginning to feel that the American presidency is and always has been about crimes upon crimes.
posted by hobo gitano de queretaro at 10:13 AM on October 14, 2019 [6 favorites]

Poor Haiti - that $21 billion that it owed France - that was reparation payments to France for the lost value of SLAVES because Haiti had the first successful slave rebellion, ending in 1804. Why did it agree to those payments? Because France imposed an embargo against Haitian sugar exports, and was supported by the US.

It is like some curse from an Ursula Le Guin novel - being attractive to the Clintons.
posted by Barbara Spitzer at 7:16 PM on October 14, 2019 [1 favorite]

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