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fab
January 22, 2004, 09:09 PM
As can be expected, excellent speech by Arundhati Roy at the World Social Forum.Like Old Imperialism, New Imperialism relies for its success on a network of agents – corrupt local elites who service Empire. We all know the sordid story of Enron in India. The then-Maharashtra government signed a power purchase agreement that gave Enron profits that amounted to 60 percent of India's entire rural development budget. A single American company was guaranteed a profit equivalent to funds for infrastructural development for about 500 million people!
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In the new era, apartheid as formal policy is antiquated and unnecessary. International instruments of trade and finance oversee a complex system of multilateral trade laws and financial agreements that keep the poor in their bantustans anyway. Its whole purpose is to institutionalize inequity. Why else would it be that the US taxes a garment made by a Bangladeshi manufacturer twenty times more than a garment made in Britain? Why else would it be that countries that grow cocoa beans, like the Ivory Coast and Ghana, are taxed out of the market if they try to turn it into chocolate? Why else would it be that countries that grow 90 percent of the world's cocoa beans produce only 5 percent of the world's chocolate? Why else would it be that rich countries that spend over a billion dollars a day on subsidies to farmers demand that poor countries like India withdraw all agricultural subsidies, including subsidized electricity? Why else would it be that after having been plundered by colonizing regimes for more than half a century, former colonies are steeped in debt to those same regimes and repay them some $382 billion a year?
Entire Article (http://www.alternet.org/story.html?StoryID=17644)

oracle
January 23, 2004, 03:08 AM
Why does this happen? There's little point in beating our breasts and feeling betrayed. Lula and Mandela are, by any reckoning, magnificent men. But the moment they cross the floor from the opposition into government they become hostage to a spectrum of threats most malevolent among them the threat of capital flight, which can destroy any government overnight


Good points. Sad that this Lula guy looks lame as soon s he gets elected. that country, with all that racism, could do with some shake-up.




Radical change cannot be negotiated by governments; it can only be enforced by people.

Did she get any concessions in the end from the Narmada stand?

Pundit
January 23, 2004, 05:16 PM
In the new era, apartheid as formal policy is antiquated and unnecessary


Maybe its the otherway around. Because there is no apartheid, we have a new era. To many people, not getting wipped to death because of the shoulder color is far better than being left out from economic bargains due to unfair international instruments of trade.