On November 18, the Supreme Court of Chile issued a protective order on behalf of Leopoldo Lopez and Daniel Ceballos, two opposition mayors imprisoned without just cause in Venezuela. These brave individuals had the temerity to oppose the regime of Nicolas Maduro, and earlier this year they went on a hunger strike.Read more
The Health Committee of Chile's Chamber of Deputies has voted out a measure to permit the killing of human fetuses in three cases: rape, fetal malformation, and danger to the life of the mother. According to opinion polls, each of these "exceptions" to the protection of life enjoys public support. A July 2015 poll by Plaza Publica-CADEM reports 74 percent support abortion when the life of the mother is endangered, 72 percent in case of rape, and 72 percent when there is a high probability the fetus will not survive, whereas according to the constitution, "the law protects the life of the unborn." Of course, the Constitution is not there to protect the lives of the popular, and the well being of the well loved, it exists to protect those who are disliked and discarded.
In the words of Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa, Nicolas Maduro's government is increasingly a “dictatorship whose economic policies and generalized corruption have terribly impoverished” Venezuela. A founding member of OPEC with extensive petroleum reserves, the once prosperous nation is plagued by shortages of goods, a stratospheric unemployment rate, and epidemic levels of crime, including an escalating crescendo of crimes committed by the state.Read more
Late Thursday afternoon, guards at Venezuela’s infamous Ramo Verde military prison attempted to abduct opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez from the cramped dungeon cell in which he has been held incommunicado. Lopez refused to leave unless he was in the presence of his lawyers and a representative of the “People’s Defense,” a branch of the Venezuelan government charged with defending the rights of people in detention. While the guards attempted to remove him by force, a prison functionary blocked the cell door.Read more
The Council of the Princeton University Community voted on Monday to gut due process for students accused of sexual misconduct. The week before last it was the turn of the faculty to genuflect as the hearse bearing the remains of due process rolled past. This unsavory episode highlights two parlous issues. First, there is the problem of sexual misconduct on campus, which was always at unacceptable levels and appears to be getting worse. Second, there is the dangerous license federal agencies have to rewrite law.Read more
The World Court resolution of Peru’s petition to change its border with Chile didn’t catch much attention beyond the Pacific coast of South America, but it matters, a lot. A century and a half ago la Guerra del Pacifico, in which Chile opposed both Bolivia and Peru, left Chile holding several hundred miles of coastal plane previously claimed by its opponents. Subsequently, in the 1929 Treaty of Lima, Peru conceded Arica to Chile, but got Tacna back. The marine border between the two countries, settled the following year, began at the coast, and extended due west at 18˚21′03′′, and there it stayed until this week.Read more
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