by Arnold August
Council on Hemispheric Affairs | May 22, 2019
“Oh, I am against military intervention!” goes a “pacifist” narrative heard in the North that serves as pretext for a statement on Venezuela. This prelude consoles the soul, clears the liberal conscience and strives to maintain the desired – but increasingly elusive – “progressive” academic, journalistic and political credentials.
However, the “pacifism” dealt with here has nothing to do with Norway’s recent gesture to seek a peaceful solution. The government of President Nicolás Maduro is of course fully involved in this latest attempt at negotiations. In fact, the Venezuelan government has been proposing this throughout the crisis.Read More »
The U.S. economy has been stuck in stagnation for a decade. The GDP growth rate has been only 2.2% per year since the recovery from the Financial Crisis and Great Recession of 2008-09 began. That is far below the growth rate in past post-recession recoveries since the end of World War II. The last long period of stagnation in the U.S. economy was the lost decade following the stock market crash of 1929.Read More »
Five members of Amnesty International’s leadership team are on their way out, following a damning report about what’s been described as the human-rights organization’s “toxic” culture.
Amnesty said the senior leadership team accepted responsibility and all seven had offered to resign.
Five of the seven senior leaders, based mainly in London and Geneva, are either have left or are in the process of leaving the organization.Read More »
Bank employees in Sudan participated massively in today’s strike. Photo: Sudanese Professionals Association
The two-day general strike which began in Sudan on May 28, saw the participation of over 90% of the workforce of the private and public sectors, including many government ministries. The strike was called for by the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) in order to pressurize the military junta to make way for civilian rule. The SPA was one of the driving forces in the protests which ousted former president Omar al-Bashir on April 11.Read More »
As many as 50,000 teachers across New Zealand went on strike on May 29 to demand a pay hike and better working conditions. Members of education unions NZEI Te Riu Roa, which represents primary school teachers, and the Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA), which represents secondary school teachers, voted to jointly call the strike when negotiations with the Ministry of Education reached a deadlock earlier this month. This will be the largest teachers’ strike the country has ever seen.
The teachers are demanding a pay increase of up to 15-16%. Apart from increased wages, they are also seeking reduced workload, and more classroom resources. The teachers are also calling on the government to devise long-term solutions to address increasing underemployment in the teaching sector. The average wage for primary school teachers is about USD 47,980 a year, which equates to about USD 23 an hour (USD 5.30 above the minimum wage).Read More »