Friday, January 30, 2009

Another world is happening

The child left behind

Hey, this is cute. Some US fifth grader read a Washington Times article on the Bolivian constitutional referendum and wrote a solid C+ paper for his social studies class on "Globalism vs. Ethnonationalism" which then somehow got posted on the wingnut website.

Oh wait, looks like this fifth grader is named "Patrick Buchanan". Change that teacher's mark to an F.

US-Bolivia opening?

Bolivian Minister of Foreign Relations David Choquehuanca:

“According to the Chancellery, more than two hundred years of the civil rights struggles have passed in the United States, giving place to a new leader: Barack Hussein Obama, as the new president of the nation, and with him, he revives the fire of equality, liberty and justice of Martin Luther King.

“I feel that the new president of the United States has a grand opportunity to improve relations with all of Latin America, in diplomacy, commercialism and investment cooperation, which doesn’t happen with ultimatums, blackmails, nor vengeful politics.”

Ranking Republican on the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Richard Lugar:

“I congratulate the Bolivian people on their referendum. Sunday’s vote was accomplished by overcoming numerous challenges. Bolivia has clearly achieved an important milestone in its history. It is now up to the Government of Bolivia, and opposition parties and interests together, to build upon this event.

“The positive statement by President Morales in response to the Obama administration's congratulatory remarks on the adoption a new national charter for Bolivia signals a willingness to work toward improved relations. If our two countries can continue to speak to one another respectfully, and if we can each designate ambassadors, yet another step would be taken to ensure that these developments represent a positive new stage in relations between the United States and Bolivia.”

The Chance to Recast US-Bolivian Relations
Andean Information Network

In September 2008, Bolivian President Evo Morales expelled the U.S. ambassador, Philip Goldberg, stating that he had violated national sovereignty by interfering in Bolivian political affairs. The Bush administration denied any improper conduct and immediately expelled the Bolivian ambassador, Gustavo Guzman. Evidently as a reprisal for Ambassador Goldberg’s expulsion, the administration then declared (without basis) (1) that Morales’ government had “failed demonstrably” to honor its international drug control obligations and suspended Bolivia from eligibility for benefits under the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act (ATPDEA). Accusing members of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of engaging in espionage and political interference, President Morales then expelled the DEA from Bolivia.

Continue reading...

The US Should Support Land Reform in Bolivia
Andean Information Network

The Bolivian government has repeatedly promised the indigenous rural poor adequate access to land since 1953. Hope that this promise would be fulfilled swept Evo Morales to electoral victory in 2005, and his administration has moved forward with a serious agrarian reform agenda that other governments have lacked. While the reform process has encountered resistance from large landholders, the Morales administration has shown a willingness to make compromises on relevant constitutional issues and follow established legal processes. It is urgent that the United States support the land reform underway in Bolivia by asking large landholders to engage in legal processes, rather than violent opposition. The U.S. should provide aid to the Bolivian government for economic development in indigenous and small farmer communities.

Continue reading...

The Real News on new constitution

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Demon tractors plot our demise!

Speaking before the Senate Armed Services Committee Defense Secretary Robert Gates alerted the nation to a growing conspiracy against our freedoms.

”I’m concerned about the level of, frankly, subversive activity that the Iranians are carrying on in a number of places, in Latin America, particularly South America and Central America. They’re opening a lot of offices and a lot of fronts, behind which they interfere in what is going on in some of these countries. To be honest, I’m more concerned about Iranian meddling in the region than I am the Russians.”

Damn. What are those cunning Iranians up to? They did build a joint tractor factory in Venezuela and Hugo has been spreading the new tractors across the continent, even suckering Evo to donate these machines to unsuspecting farmers. But how could an army of tractors be used to advance their nefarious plot to destroy America? Oh shit...


It's perfect. From hidden locations across the western hemisphere these war machines are just waiting to strike at the Homeland and free their demon lord Megatron from Hoover Dam! Kiss your freedoms goodbye because we're finished.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

AP does a kind deed

We didn't think you guys were capable. After reading Otto's post on the Facebook group organized towards the assassination of Evo Morales, AP alerted Facebook who shut down the page and then wrote this story on it.

As AP notes, the group's organizer Hony Pierola is a huge asshole. Pierola: "in my honest opinion as a human I think it's not his [Evo Morales'] fault he's such an imbecile... I hope he doesn't do stupid things and that Bolivia doesn't turn into a communist state," Since Pierola is a resident of Fairfax, VA is the Secret Service the proper authority to alert about his threats towards a Head of State?

Otto has a follow up post as well.

Monday, January 26, 2009

USAID flattered by yellow journalists

USAID Bolivia accepted the "Golden Page" award for the "2008 Organization of the Year" from El Diario, La Paz's most conservative daily paper. USAID won "based on USAID’s commitment to helping the Andean nation." Acting director Peter Natiello: "'We at USAID deeply appreciate the award and commit ourselves to working even harder' in 2009 to help the Bolivian people"

It takes truly "patriotic" journalists to honor a foreign organization two years in a row which committed itself to overthrowing the nation's democratic constitutional government. But we shouldn't expect anything less from Bolivia's domestic press.

Dangl in the streets

Ben Dangl of Upside Down World is not just any gringo journalist cruising through Bolivia, he actually hangs out with those crazy Indians and then writes down what they told him. Here's the latest from La Paz.

From Bolivia's Streets: What Bolivia's Think About the New Constitution

Bolivia Looking Forward: New Constitution Passed, Celebrations Hit the Streets

Why they really oppose the constitution

"What could a collection of sheep-herders, coca farmers and road-blockers, suckled by the NGOs, have to offer the country?...The Constituent Assembly has been very democratic, agreed. But it verges on irresponsibility to claim that illiterates can legislate."

Why Evo matters to Obama

The Contradictions Facing a Black President of the American Empire
Johann Hari

The tears are finally drying - the tears of the Bush years, and the tears of awe at the sight of a black President of the United States. So what now? The cliché of the day is that Barack Obama will inevitably disappoint the hopes of a watching world, but the truth is more subtle than that. If we want to see how Obama will change the world - for good or bad - we need to trace the deep structural factors that underlie US foreign policy, and tease out what he will do about them. A useful case study of these pressures is about to flicker onto our news pages for a moment - from the top of the world.

Bolivia is the poorest country in Latin America, and its lofty slums 4000 meters above sea level seem a world away from the high theatre of the inauguration. But if we look at this country closely, we can explain one of the great paradoxes of the United States - that it has incubated a triumphant civil rights movement at home, yet thwarted civil rights movements abroad. Bolivia shows us in stark detail the contradictions facing a black President of the American empire.

Continue reading...

Bolivia Approves New Constitution; How Will the Obama Administration Respond?


WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Obama administration’s response to Bolivia’s referendum on a new constitution may be key to improved relations between the two countries, according to Mark Weisbrot, co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

“If President Obama issues a clear statement indicating support for the constitutional process – as governments in the region undoubtedly will – this will send a message that Washington no longer supports extra-legal or anti-democratic actions against the Bolivian government,” said Weisbrot.

“If not, opposition governors and groups who have vowed to defy the new constitution will likely read Washington’s silence as continued support for their cause,” he said.

Continue reading..

Sunday, January 25, 2009

"Yes" to a new Bolivia

The Bruddasites are all already on it. Yes to the new constitution wins by a landslide.

Bolivia's corporate media is calling it at 57%, but their estimates are already moving up (currently claiming 60%). These numbers are playing like a repeat of the Recall Referendum in which Evo won 67% in the final count. Yes is sure to win 60+%. Put your bets down now on the final count. This all calls for a song:

¡Viva Mi Patria Bolivia!

A sign of what is coming

Wondering how the vote is coming along? Well in the country's first voting station to close "Yes" won 100% of the eight votes cast, with one absentee. In case you were also wondering the referendum is being monitored by respected international observers. According to the OAS things are moving along with "regularity".

But this is not enough for Branko Marinkovic who claims indigenous rural voters are being intimidated into voting for a constitution which expands their rights, along with massive voter fraud, and "Venezuelan military functionaries". It only fits then that Marinkovic's own brown shirt unionistas intimidated "Yes" supporters in Santa Cruz earlier today.

Evo slaps down CNN

At a press conference yesterday Evo dressed down a CNN correspondent for the network's duplicitous coverage of Morales' presidency, specifically Bolivian-Iranian relations, to which the correspondent claimed ignorance of CNN's reporting. Maybe Evo is overreacting, I mean CNN basically only called him a nacrotrafficking Jihadi terrorist.

Not all trash

You know their are some English language journalists and researchers covering the Constitutional Referendum using things called "facts" and "history". I know, yawn.

If you are into that kind of thing, nerd:

Reuters: "Bolivia votes on leftist, indigenous constitution"

Guardian: "Bolivia set to adopt new constitution empowering indigenous majority"

McClatchy: "Bolivia's native peoples poised to win new rights"

COHA: "From Rightist Chaos to Leftist Constitutionalism"

UDW: "Spilling ink instead of blood"

openDemocracy: "New constitution, new definition"

Side note

Ever notice how in the western press Bolivia's racial divides are described as between Indians and "whites", with white always in quotes. Since when has white become a postmodern identity marker?

Who lives in Rancho Cucamonga?

I got this visit via Sitemeter last night.

Continent : North America
Country : United States (Facts)
State : California
City : Rancho Cucamonga
Lat/Long : 34.146, -117.5798 (Map)
Referring URL against whites
Search Engine
Search Words
bolivia's crimes against whites
Visit Entry Page

I wonder if they were able to read this blog through that distracting white sheet.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Bolivia votes, hacks squirm

That's right, it's the big day when Bolivians will go to polls and handily approve their new constitution after decades of demands, marches, organizing, and years overcoming the death throws of fascist attempts to subvert democracy. But not everyone is so happy with the Bolivian people getting what they have struggled for. The BBC doesn't want to admit the violent golpista opposition is finished, except they totally are and this referendum will only stick it to these loser even further. Even the Wall Street Journal is laughing at their crazy Jesus "Vote No" TV ads.

So what is a western news bureau to do facing the afoul truth? Dig deeper down that denial ditch and find some shameless hacks to pile on the bullshit. Here goes:

AFP claims the constitutional referendum is "divisive" because Evo only has a 67% proven approval rating.

The Economist is bitter Evo continues to be so popular and has guided the Bolivian economy to unarguable success so they claim the new leftist constitution empowering indigenous self-governance "owes rather more to the corporatism of Spanish colonial rule than Marx"

CNN writes utter trash and peddles lies while introducing us to a new hack Peter Hakim from the Inter-American Dialogue Institute, claiming Evo is one "who use democracy to concentrate power." Except the new constitution decentralizes power to local authorities more than any previous Bolivian constitution.

The Financial Times also cites a Inter-American Dialogue hack, Michael Shifter who thinks the constitution will only bring more instability. Go ahead and trust that assessment from an article which unashamedly quotes fascist scum Branko Marinkovic in calling the new constitution "racist".

The Christian Science Monitor's resident idiot Sara Miller Llana managed to paste together an article with random nutters in Santa Cruz, the joke Human Rights Foundation, and some Bolivian academic hack Carlos Toranzo who claims the new constitution is not a legitimate social pact because "There was no agreement. After Jan. 25, we will have more violence." Just the agreement between the majority of elected Constituent Assembly members who drafted the text, two-thirds of Congress who approved and redrafted the text, and the voters who will vote on it Sunday... Besides that, it is totally authoritarian.

Bloomberg found a US academic hack Nicholas A. Robins to claim, “The new constitution is a massive structural exercise in affirmative action, using discrimination to try to end discrimination,” I know! Those fucking Indians don't deserve anything, the white man stole this shit fair and square.

But the LA Times gets the hackyist of hack awards. They manage write an entire article based on interviews with professional hack Eduardo Gamarra, the recalled corrupt Prefect of La Paz Lupe Andrade, ex-Prez hack Carlos Mesa, and former opposition congressman hack Luis Eduardo Siles without one word from a pro-government voice. Now that's "objectivity".

Take these names down because it won't be long before we get to officially call them idiots for their false predictions of impending "chaos" and "instability" with the new constitution.

With your hand on your heart, say stupid

Opposition music ads against tomorrow's Constitutional Referendum. The opposition is chalk full of sure fire arguments, no?

(hat tip MGrace's new blog El Gaviero)

Basically: "Do what that pretty white girl says, vote No."

Oh, that Bolivian press

Supporters of Evo are always bitching about how the press is biased and hostile, lairs, racists and some other sissy names used by commies after they complain about being massacred or something.

But then Evo started bitching and publicly humiliated a Bolivian journalist after the guy published a front page story humbly declaring Evo had participated in an illegal contraband scheme based on... well, the solid word of a few guys arrested for smuggling Brazilian trucks. Evo called the domestic Bolivian press corps a bunch of "lairs" and said he'd only give interviews to the "more responsible" international press corp, and their standards are so high.

But you know, how ridiculous, the press never lies. I mean only a few days after Evo confronted the Bolivian press corps, La Razón (Bolivia's highest regarded and widest distributed daily) printed a piece of dynamite journalism, following up on the sensational arrest of opposition leader Branko Marinkovic, accompanied by this stellar, clearly non-photoshopped photo showing how it went down. The only problem of course being that it never happened. (This is not a joke, that is actually the picture they published.) One of La Razón's major corporate stake holders until a few days ago has been the Spanish press company Prisa, whose conservative daily El Pais is also known for its inventive coverage of their former colony.

But stupid mistakes like this are never directly politically motivated. It was only coincidence that after a rightwing radio host Jorge Melgar Quete was arrested for calling on air for Evo to be assassinated that the Fox News of Bolivia, Unitel aired this months old tape of government minister Ramon Quintana at a pre-August 10th Recall Referendum rally in Pando calling for voters to "politically bury [Pando Prefect] Leopold Fernadez" in the upcoming vote, which is obviously an equivalent call to violence and somehow implicates the government in the September 11th massacre of 30 campesinos by Fernadez's paramilitary goons. And its only fair and balanced that half of Pando's press corp were also on the pay rolls of Fernadez's Prefectura. I am sure that didn't corrupt their reporting of the massacre.

Now this group called "Reporters without Borders" is actually detailing malicious abuses of media, this thing called "hate radio", assaults on media workers and outlets, and telling Bolivian journalists that with that thing called "free speech" comes another thing called "responsibility", to you know, not lie and stuff. (tip Ten Percent)

Typically awesome, with the Bolivian press in such a shithole, Evo has decided to save the day. Two days ago Evo initiated a new state run newspaper daily, "Cambio", giving Bolivians a non-bullshit option for their daily news consumption. The End.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

US stooge can't handle the truth

U.S. Charge d’Affaires Krishna Urs walked out during Evo's three years in office anniversary speech after the uppity Indian had the nerve to tell the truth to his face;

“The United States has fomented the regional disintegration of the country, holding secret meetings to promote disturbances against the national government.”

Urs parroted former US Ambassador douchebag Goldberg telling journalists the statements are “unfounded and false.”

Perhaps, except for that secret meeting Goldberg had with those secessionists and fascists prior to an attempted violent coup, and except for the US Embassy's internal documents showing USAID staff trying to organize political opposition to Morales. But you have never heard about any of that because everything I have just told you has been censored from US press coverage of Bolivia.

If Obama wants to show the world that "America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity", he can start by appointing an Ambassador to Bolivia who won't peddle bold face lies or support coup mongers.

ADL condemns Evo's "inflammatory and offensive" call for life and humanity

On the crazy front, head of the Anti-Defamation League Abraham Foxman denounced Bolivia and Venezuela's decision to cut diplomatic ties with Israel over its genocidal campaign against the people of Gaza claiming this means Evo and Hugo now "stand with the terrorist organization Hamas." According to Foxman, Morales' call for humanity is cause for concern for Bolivia's Jewish community, because apparently without diplomatic contact with Israel Evo is ready to throw all the Juden in concentration camps. God forbid Bolivian Jews might feel more fidelity towards their home than Israeli war crimes. Never mind that under Morales' new constitution Bolivian Jews will for the first time have equal protection under the law to freely practice their religious beliefs.

While on the subject of discredited human rights organizations, the latest Human Rights Watch report on Bolivia (encountered on the conservative MABblog) effectively equivocates rights violations between pro-Morales government and opposition supporters, only citing various "accusations"... Their firmest statement being: "The government’s supporters and its opponents, as well as the police and military, have been accused of killings during violent clashes between rival demonstrators." The report then goes on to tell how Morales' supporters have been slaughtered on various occasions by rightwing opponents over the last decade, but never lays responsibility on anyone while expressing concern over continuing impunity (good one guys!).

Basically the HRW is full of shit and is clearly morphing into a US interest mouthpiece. If they are not refusing to answer expert critics on their bullshit Venezuela report, they are claiming the equality of Israeli and Hamas war crimes while advocating IDF investigate itself, because to do otherwise might offend their "pro-Israel donors".

Monday, January 19, 2009

Constitutional referendum reading

Bolivia's Constitutional Challenge
Annie Murphy

Mariano Aguilera is driving fast down a country road in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, heading towards his sugar cane fields. He coaxes the red Mercedes over ninety and passes a truck full of peasants, regarding them in his rearview mirror.

"I bet they're headed to La Paz to take over the Congress or something," he says. "A new constitution is going to bring nothing but more problems."

From August 2006 to December 2007, Aguilera was actually part of an assembly that rewrote Bolivia's constitution. The draft will be approved or rejected by a highly anticipated referendum here on January 25.

Continue reading...

Bolivians Mobilize for National Vote on New Constitution
Ben Dangl

In the morning on Sunday, January 18, after a heavy rain fell on La Paz, Bolivia, the sun came out, drying the umbrellas of thousands of marchers winding through the city streets. The mobilization was in support of a new constitution which is to be voted on this January 25.

Eddie Mamani, a resident of La Paz with an indigenous wiphala flag draped around his neck, spoke loudly to be heard over the brass band playing behind him. "For too many years we have been exploited by right wing politicians who do not govern for all Bolivians. We are marching today for our children and our grandchildren."

Continue reading...

Bolivian Constitutional Referendum Analysis
Andean Information Network

On January 25, 2009 Bolivians will vote to accept or reject a draft constitution promoted by the MAS government, resulting from the conflict-ridden Constitutional Assembly and subsequent multiparty negotiations. The extensive 100-page, awkwardly-worded document has provoked a myriad of mixed reactions in the diverse nation. Opposition groups have voiced stiff criticism of the proposal, although ironically their congressional representatives ratified it. On the other hand, some social movements and progressive groups argue that MAS permitted too many concessions in the document to make it sufficiently reformist. Some of these critiques have proven valid and constructive, and others inaccurate and politically motivated.

Continue reading...

Touching a Nerve: Freedom of Religion in Bolivian Constitutional Debate
Andean Information Network

The new Bolivian constitutional draft to be voted upon in the January 25 referendum incorporates an important reform: the separation of church and state. It also broadens provisions for religious freedom, specifically including indigenous religious practices. Although these stipulations seem rational and necessary to citizens of countries who employ these precepts, within Bolivia it is a symbolic and historic change. In response, opposition groups on the right argue that some of the articles are too vague and leave the door open for religious reforms they oppose, especially in the areas of personal rights and education. In contrast, women’s and other progressive groups had hoped that the new constitution would go further to lay the foundation for more liberal legislation.

Continue reading...

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Evo stands against genocide

With the Gaza death toll exceeding 1,000 Evo Morales has expelled the Israeli consulate, calling their crimes by the proper name, "genocide".

"Considering these grave attacks against life and humanity, Bolivia will stop having diplomatic relations with Israel."

"The Israeli government's crimes affect global stability and peace and have returned the world to the worst stage of crimes against humanity that we hadn't seen except in World War II and in the last years in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda."

Additionally, Evo will seek charges against Israeli's leadership for crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court, and compelling the UN General Assembly to begin investigations. Bravo (video of speech, Spanish only)

This is Genocide

White Phosphorus, incendiary weapon akin to napalm

Israeli Murder Tourism, "a little bit fascist"

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Otto rocks

Inca Kola News is a finalist for the 2008 Weblog Awards for best Latino, Caribean, or South American blog. Please vote now!! and tomorrow and the day after until the contest is over.

Apologies to Otto for being so late on this post, but you all need to head over and vote for this awesome dude. He has been a indispensable ally in promoting this blog and more importantly the cause of the Bolivian people against racism and fascism. He is one of those few people who will for example post a gut wrenching video of Bolivia's racist "autonomy" supporters at work, routinely hidden from western eyes by many press outlets. So like I said, vote.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Beauty queens and coup mongers

Contestants for "Miss Hispanamerica 2008" during the October contest with Percy Fernández, the rightwing mayor of Santa Cruz Bolivia made famous in September by his open call for a military coup against Evo Morales, quoted by the NYTimes,

"This government has not learned how to govern, and for that reason I ask the armed forces to overthrow the president of the republic."

(Photos taken from “Promociones Gloria" website, the Santa Cruz beauty contest outfit which runs the competition... and "Mister Bolivia" contest won in 2004 by the North American Dustin Larsen.)

Then surprise, surpise! The contest winner Laura Zuniga of Mexico was arrested in December by Mexican police for arms and drug smuggling- her boyfriend only happens to be the brother of "El Doctor", head of the Juarez drug cartel. Promociones Gloria stripped her of the title for "consequence of events of public knowledge in which Miss Laura Zuñiga has been involved," failing to demonstrate "adequate behavior, avoid scandals and bad habits and be a good example for society." Glad to see they are maintaining standards. This is all certainly a spectacle.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Evo on Gaza

"Israel must change its policies and the U.S. government should not continue using a country like Israel to invade countries that are seeking liberation... The killings are not a solution in this new millennium, so Israel should stop being a tool of U.S. imperialism to humiliate the Palestinian people." (photo, The Angy Arab)

Evo has spoken out. Obama is silent. What about you?

US: ANSWER Campaign, End the Occupation

UK: Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Scottish Palestine Solidarity