Ibero-American News Digest
Lopez Obrador Announces National Tour
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will announce his cabinet on Nov. 3, as the kickoff for a 28-city, ten state national tour between Nov. 3 and 18, organizing towards his inauguration as the legitimate President of Mexico, in Mexico City's Zocalo on Nov. 20, his website (www.lopezobrador.org.mx) announced this week. Also announced was the launching of a new internet TV channel, www.votoxvote.org.mx, where the activities of the resistance will be reported, so people can participate.
Lopez Obrador's tour is likely to make more history than the just-announced meeting between the illegitimate President and President-to-be, George Bush and Felipe Calderon, who are to meet in Washington on Nov. 9, to discuss free trade and security for North America.
IMF Official To Run Economy for Mexico's Calderon
Mexico's "official" President-elect Felipe Calderon announced on Oct. 16 that he had named Agustin Cartens, the Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, as economic coordinator on his transition team, with responsibility for drafting the economic policy of the new government, including its 2007 budget. The appointment confirms the widespread rumors that Carstens would be named as Calderon's Finance Minister come inauguration day Dec. 1. Calderon singled out Carstens' doctorate in economics from George "Pinochet" Shultz's notorious University of Chicago as a key reason he had been chosen.
Hinting at Carstens' new responsibilities was an IMF report on Mexico released on Oct. 11, which advises the incoming Calderon government to promote "greater competition" in Mexico's financial system, and more "risk-sharing" with private investors on the part of Mexico's state oil company Pemex. The report states that, for Mexico, "The challenge ahead will be for the new government to put in place structural reforms that will remove remaining obstacles to growth while fully entrenching macroeconomic stability." Specifically urged are tax reforms, financial reforms, and investment reforms.
Drive Is On To Privatize Mexico's Public Universities
Students should have to pay part of their tuition to attend Mexico's public universities, a "Council of Education Specialists" advising the incoming Calderon government recommended on Oct. 13, in releasing a report on how to overhaul education in the country. The proposed measure is the cutting edge of a drive to rip up Article Three of the Constitution which requires the state provide free education to all. The Zedillo government tried in 1999 to require students pay tuition to attend public universities, but was forced to back down, in the face of a lengthy strike at Mexico's giant National Autonomous University (UNAM).
There is a broader plan involved. UNAM researcher Gian Carlo Delgado revealed on Sept. 19, that the World Bank has been working since 1999 to revamp Mexico's university education and scientific and technological centers to meet "the necessities of the market." The plan, first called the Knowledge and Innovation Project and now renamed the Innovation for Competitiveness Project, argues superior education must be financed by "public-private partnerships," and teaching and research should be refocussed to increase "competitiveness," by setting up formal ties between universities and private companies, including foreign companies. On Sept. 12, Felipe Calderon asked one of the entities cooperating with the World Bank on the plan, the National Association of Universities and Institutes of Higher Learning, to draft a national education plan for his government, one of whose three major objectives is to increase "competitiveness."
On Sept. 10, legitimate President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador denounced the fact that "the right wing" has set out to shut down public education, to provide education run by "the market, as if it were a commodity, to see who could acquire it."
Computer 'Glitch' Leads to Second Round in Ecuador
In Ecuador's Oct. 15 Presidential elections, front-runner Rafael Correa, an anti-free market nationalist, slipped to second place behind right-wing billionaire banana tycoon Alvaro Noboa, after the computerized vote-counting system broke down with only 70% of the vote counted. Correa has charged "shameless fraud" on the part of the country's "political mafia," and is calling for a strong and united showing behind his campaign in the Nov. 26 run-off election, when he will face off against Noboa.
From the Archives: Pinochet's Banker Train Fears Bachelet
Synarchist banker John Train's hedge-fund operation, Genesis Chile Fund (CGF), hysterically warned in a December 2005 evaluation, that Chile could slip from synarchist control, were Michele Bachelet to become President (which she has). At the same time that it was undergoing "voluntary liquidation," reportedly due to "regulatory breaches," the Genesis Chile Fund, of which John Train was a director, warned that the January 2006 runoff in Chile's Presidential elections could be influenced by the "socialist/nationalist/populist trend already seen with Messrs. Chavez in Venezuela, Kirchner in Argentina, and Castro in Cuba."
The GCF's "fortnightly update" for Dec. 30, 2005 lied that Venezuelan Hugo Chavez was the big problem, because he was throwing money around to people like the "reptilian" Argentine President Nestor Kirchner. This had led to "working class and indigenous" elements taking over in Bolivia and threatening to declare sovereignty over the country's hydrocarbon resources, it added.
In reality, the Train outfit knew very well that a phase-change was occurring in Ibero-America, as several Presidents joined together to coordinate anti-IMF policy. They feared that were Bachelet to join this emerging "Presidents Club," the grip that synarchists had held on the country since the Pinochet coup of 1973, could be loosened. Already anticipating a Bachelet victory, GCF shrieked, Chile's state oil firm ENAP was considering investments in Venezuela, while copper workers were striking for higher wages.
GCF suggests that the Christian Democracy (which helped overthrow Salvador Allende) could be an important factor in the elections, since some of its internal factions were backing billionaire fascist Sebastian Pinera. Even though Pinera lost, the CD has in fact acted as the saboteur within the ruling Concertacion coalition on several occasions. But the "wealthy and well-to-do" whom GCF said would play a key role in determining the electoral outcome, couldn't beat the majority of the Chilean population who had had enough of the Pinochet crowd, and elected Bachelet last March.