Monthly Archives: April 2010

Reality is just so much less interesting

While the usual suspects up north try to drum up panic over the possibility of an insidious Iranian incursion into the American continent, the always-excellent Tim Rogers just went ahead and asked Iran’s ambassador to Nicaragua what they’re up to: The Iranian Embassy in Managua, he said, is “the smallest diplomatic mission in the entire [...]
Posted in Nicaragua, Politics | Tagged | 1 Comment

Car chase in Mexico

This video of a kidnapping and car chase in Mexico is notable mainly for the bad-assitude of the TV journalists who were on this like white on rice. Well done, gentlemen.
Posted in Mexico, Side notes | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Economist on Mockus

The Economist takes a peak at the Mockus phenomenon in Colombia: “His moustacheless beard gives him the air of a Baltic pastor… He is financing his campaign with a bank overdraft. His supporters rely on Facebook and make their own posters; street vendors sell unofficial campaign T-shirts.” [link]
Posted in Colombia, Politics, Side notes | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

‘The Torture Coloney’

For your Wednesday evening reading pleasure, a very long, very strange article on Colonia Dignidad, a German colony founded in Chile by a child molester/Nazi named Paul Schaefer. In addition to being the personification of the evil cult leader, Schaefer – who died last week in prison – got into evil politics as well, torturing [...]
Posted in Chile, History, Human Rights, Odd | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Chávez tweets UPDATED

Hugo Chávez now has a Twitter account: @chavezcandanga, which roughly translates to “Chávez candanga.” That is to say, if you think you can translate candanga, please, give it a shot. As far as the Venezuelan executive’s eloquent use of Venezuelan slang in an official capacity, it’s reminiscent of the “vergatario:” Anyway, all trips down memory [...]
Posted in Odd, Politics, Venezuela | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Mockus running away with it

This is almost ridiculous. According to the latest polls, Mockus leads Santos 38% to 29%, and in a runoff he would absolutely dominate, with 50% to Santos’ 37%. I think it might be time for Chávez to start squabbling with someone else, and for the rest of us to start wondering what a Mockus presidency [...]
Posted in Colombia, Politics | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Cruise lines to abandon Antarctica

Some cruise lines will cease traveling to Antarctica after this cruise season, as a ban on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil goes into effect next year. The ban came after a 2007 incident when a Gap Adventures ship got punctured by ice and sank, causing a mess. [link]
Posted in Argentina, Environment, Side notes, Travel | Leave a comment

Anywhere but there

They did it. Arizona – a state for old people and unemployed real estate brokers – now has the most fascist immigration laws in the country. I try not to write about happenings in the United States in this space, but since Lat/Am Daily criticizes so many other countries in the Americas for their human [...]
Posted in Human Rights | Tagged | 5 Comments

Santos and Mockus tied

Folks, we have a race. According to the latest poll results, Santos and Mockus are technically tied for first place, polling with 35% and 34% of the vote. Also? If the second round of the presidential election were between Santos and Mockus, the former mayor of Bogotá would win the election with 50%, over the [...]
Posted in Colombia, Politics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Pecados de mi Padre

This looks like a fascinating movie: Pecados de mi Padre – Sins of my Father – purports to be a documentary on the life of Pablo Escobar’s son, Sebastián, but it also appears to have a healthy bit of good clean footage and storytelling about Pablo himself. However, I have to say that having read [...]
Posted in Arts and Culture, Colombia, History, War on drugs | Tagged , | Leave a comment
  • DAILY LINKS

    • The Nation has a long, wonky, wonderful article on Mexican maize cultivation, the effects of NAFTA, and the dangers of genetically-modified seeds. Author Peter Canby backs up his excellent writing with piles and piles of meticulous research. Not to be missed. [link, via SM] (Image from Joel Penner.)

    • Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas ended his hunger strike yesterday after 134 days. Farinas decided to end his strike after the Cuban government said it would release political prisoners rounded up in the "Black Spring" crackdown of 2003. Get well soon. [link]

    • The Uruguayan selection, which has made it to the quarter finals of the World Cup, just received a shipment of half a ton of fine cuts of beef for the mother of all asados in preparation for a contest against Ghana on Friday: "450 kilos of lomo, 200 of entrecot, 75 of vacío, 75 of colita de cuadril, 150 of ojo de bife and 50 kg of picaña." [link]

    • Hitmen have assassinated the PRI candidate for governor of Tamaulipas State, Rodolfo Torre Cantú. Torre was gunned down along with six others at about 10:30 this morning on a highway on the way to a campaign event. Drug mafias are assumed to be responsible. [link]

    • From the days when coups were something of a regional sport, new documents detail a famous British ballerina's role in a plot to topple the government of Panama. The plan was to use her yacht to gather men and arms, then "land somewhere and collect in the hills." It didn't work. [link]

    • Mexico's Attorney General's Office has posted on its web site irrefutable evidence that gold-plated AR-15s and diamond-studded pistol grips are not nearly as cool-looking as they sound. The deadly knick-knack collection is said to belong to Valencia Cartel leader El Lobo. [link]

    • Two Brazilian ranchers were sentenced to 30 years in prison apiece for ordering the killing of an environmentalist nun: "Prosecutors said the pair offered to pay a gunman $25,000 to kill the 73-year-old [Dorothy] Stang because she had prevented them from stealing a piece of land that the government had granted to a group of poor farmers." [link]


    • This video of a kidnapping and car chase in Mexico is notable mainly for the bad-assitude of the TV journalists who were on this like white on rice. Well done, gentlemen.

    • The Economist takes a peak at the Mockus phenomenon in Colombia: "His moustacheless beard gives him the air of a Baltic pastor... He is financing his campaign with a bank overdraft. His supporters rely on Facebook and make their own posters; street vendors sell unofficial campaign T-shirts." [link]

    • Some cruise lines will cease traveling to Antarctica after this cruise season, as a ban on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil goes into effect next year. The ban came after a 2007 incident when a Gap Adventures ship got punctured by ice and sank, causing a mess. [link]