Tag Archives: chile

Dissenters voice doubt over John Paul II sainthood

Pope John Paul is slated to be declared a saint on Sunday, but some disagree with the declaration of his sainthood

JOHN PAUL II. A picture made available on April 7, 2014 shows a portrait of Pope John Paul II during the final preparations for the opening of The Holy Father John Paul II Family Home Museum in Wadowice, near Cracow, Poland, 05 April 2014. Jacek Bednarczyk/EPA

VATICAN CITY A much-loved pope will be declared a saint on Sunday but not everyone in the Catholic Church agrees.

John Paul II also alienated many left-wing Catholics and has been blamed for hushing up child sex crimes.

“Not all the people of God agree about canonisation,” the International Movement We Are Church said in a statement ahead of the canonisation ceremony in St Peter’s for John Paul II and his Italian predecessor John XXIII.

The group accused the late pope of “spiritual authoritarianism” and of putting too much emphasis on “hierarchical control” two traits it said left little room for victims and investigations of abuses.

“Pope John Paul II was a pope of great contradiction. His tragedy lies in the discrepancy between his commitment to reform and dialogue in the world and his return to authoritarianism,” it said.

The pontiff credited with helping to bring down Communism in Eastern Europe was accused of backing right-wing dictators in Latin America including Augusto Pinochet in Chile during the Cold War.

At the same time, the Vatican cracked down on the Liberation Theology movement of pro-social justice clergymen which it saw as being too Marxist.

Bishops accused of being leftists were replaced by ultra-conservatives and dissident priests were banned from teaching, while more conservative Latin American movements were given favourable treatment.

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Dissenters voice doubt over John Paul II sainthood

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The week in pictures

images: /mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139231314476_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139231751602_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139232704277_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139232986227_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139233564763_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/2014413923495902_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/20144139234783371_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/4/13/2014413923595608_8.jpg captions: A view of houses affected by a fire on April 12 in Valparaiso, Chile. The wildfire has destroyed approximately 500 houses and forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 people. Cyclone Ita made landfall in Queensland, Australia on April 12, toppling houses and boats.

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The week in pictures

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The New Theology of (Global) Hope

Not since Pope John Paul II has a religious leader been looked upon so ardently as the face of hope in a turbulent world. With global leadership faltering and multilateral organizations incapable of bringing about a resolution to conflicts, all eyes are on Rome, especially as President Obama, the politician of hope, seeks the divine intervention of Pope Francis. On the agenda will be issues of social justice and finding solutions to the vast income inequality that still keeps a billion people in extreme poverty.

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The New Theology of (Global) Hope

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Ignacio Portes: How the Left Underestimates Chiles Right-Wing Keynesians

Yves here. Please welcome Igancio Portes to NC. Hes a sophisticated young writer who has a sharp eye for power dynamics and is keenly interested in why the left (the genuine left as opposed to the fake version we have in the US) so often fails to achieve its intended results when it gets control of a government. Hell be providing posts from time to time on Latin America, which is too often covered in a cursory and propagandized manner in the mainstream English language press.

By Ignacio Portes, a freelance journalist who lives in Buenos Aires. He has been published in English at PandoDaily and NsfwCorp

The rise of left wing movements in Chile has led some analysts to believe that the neoliberal model of the country might finally be subjected to a serious challenge. Students have organized demanding that education should be a universal right, not a privilege to compete for; the private pension system has come under question; and the conservative-neoliberal alliance thats been in government for the last four years has proven to be a false alternative to the limits of the also-neoliberal (but more socially oriented) Christian Democrat + Socialist Party alliance that presided over the country from the end of the Pinochet dictatorship to 2010. A new, slightly more leftist alliance that includes both the 1990-2010 governing coalition and some other parties will now have four years of rule.

These are all positive developments, but a sustainable shift in power is still quite far from materializing. The left might be overestimating its own powers and underestimating the strength of neoliberalism, which has its supporters inside the new ruling coalition, and is also sustained by something that transcends Chile: the power that capital has today to shape the world economy.

The pro-capital, Mont Pelerin-inspired, export-based economy of Chile was installed during Pinochets dictatorship, when resistance against it could easily be held back as there was no democracy or human rights to put any limits on the regime or its unpopular reforms. Navigating Chiles moments of crisis and its negative impacts on living standards was much easier for the Pinochet regime, knowing that state terror ensured there was hardly any chance of massive social unrest. But this doesnt explain why, after the dictatorship ended and basic liberties were restored, many of the tenets imposed by its neoliberal reformers were kept in place, unquestioned. Inequality, the weakness of organized labor, the idea that the market should be in charge of most of the economy, and that compliance to market logic and an almost unlimited competition are the basis of a healthy society: most of these neoliberal principles were, at best, slightly toned down during the post-dictatorship Concertation decades, and at worst, left completely intact.

What alarms me is how the left cant seem to deal intellectually with one of the biggest reasons for why this happened. Parts of the capitalist tale about Chile are true in a perverse way: capital does flow towards places with lax regulations, low wages, low social spending and weak unionsand that can bring an amount of growth and prosperity to a country under certain conditions, even if life becomes totally dominated by capital, and its not too inspiring to live with so little time to dedicate to things in life other than The Market.

Suppressing wages to restrict internal demand is a recipe for Depression if you are a developed European country in the middle of a deep recessionbut its the reality under which competition to attract capital has forced Latin America and other underdeveloped regions to work with for a long time.

Under Pinochet, Chile set the foundations for exactly that: what was (and is) a relatively educated and healthy workforce was made cheap and disciplined enough under an iron fist so as to attract a lot of capital to Chile, once internal resistance was quashed. By the end of the dictatorship, much of the brutal sacrifices imposed from above to lower wages, destroy labors bargaining power and eliminate state interventionism had already been accomplished. And after several horrendous crises, the economy was now attracting a lot of foreign investment and growing steadily, thanks to the work of Chiles now disciplined workforce.

So the democratically elected government that followed the Military Junta was presented with the following dilemma: Should we risk our now considerable growth rates by trying to reverse all these changes, making our country less competitive internationally? Or do we just take advantage of the fact that were now getting lots of investment, exporting massive amounts of raw materials, have decent levels of employment and the ability to import a lot of consumer goods without bankrupting the country to keep the population happy? We could even improve the welfare state a bit without bothering capital too much, using the year-on-year increases of state revenue that growth leaves, without even needing to seriously tax the rich.

It was hard for Latin American countries to compete with Chiles love affair with capital, which was all flowing its way. Some tried to do it, but the social consequences of firing people en masse, lowering internal demand, privatizing state assets and so on were so harsh that barely anyone resisted the reforms without having first experienced all kinds of crises that made them unsustainable.

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Ignacio Portes: How the Left Underestimates Chiles Right-Wing Keynesians

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Chilean club fined for wearing ‘anti-Israeli’ jerseys

A top flight club in Chile have been fined and ordered to change the numbers on their shirts after complaints from Jewish organisations.

Club Deportivo Palestino, who were founded by Palestinian immigrants in 1920, caused big controversy when they wore the distinctive shirts for three matches.

The problem came with the numbers on the back of the shirts, or more specifically how the number one was represented.

As you can see in the photograph above from AFP, the number one was replaced by a map of Palestine as it was before the UN voted to partition it in 1947.

The Jewish organisations who complained about the shirt said that the design implied the entire area was Palestinian and did not recognise the state of Israel.

The club continued to use the shirt, which is also in the green, white and red colours of the Palestine flag, while the Chilean FA investigated.

The federation finally ruled against Palestino and fined them $1,300 (800) saying that they were against “any form of political, religious, sexual, ethnic, social or racial discrimination.”

“We cannot accept the involvement of football with politics and religion,” they added.

On the club’s official Facebook page Palestino state: “For us, free Palestine will always be historical Palestine, nothing less.”

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Chilean club fined for wearing ‘anti-Israeli’ jerseys

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Pope Chooses New Cardinals

Pope Francis announced a new cadre of cardinals, naming 19 men from Africa, Asia and North and South America, from countries as far-flung as the Ivory Coast and the Philippines to reflect his focus on global poverty. Besides fulfilling administrative duties and acting as counsel for the pope, cardinals main function is to elect a pope when the Holy See becomes vacant. Of the 19 cardinals Francis named, 16 are younger than 80, meaning they are eligible to elect the next pope, the Associated Pressreports

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Pope Chooses New Cardinals

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US Called to Rescue Chinese Ship Trapped in Antarctic

Chinas Xue Long, or Ice Dragon, research icebreaker is stuck in Antarctic ice, after attempting to rescue the crew of a Russian ship.

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US Called to Rescue Chinese Ship Trapped in Antarctic

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On the job

Time traveler Paul Salopek leads his camels across Ethiopias Afar desert. (John Stanmeyer / National Geographic)

Paul Salopek is going for a walk. He set out in Ethiopia at the beginning of 2013. If all goes well, hell arrive at the tip of Chile in 2020. Salopek, 51 and a veteran foreign correspondent, is retracing the 60,000-year-old route of the first humans who emigrated from Africa, through the Middle East and Asia, and into the Americas.

Christened Out of Eden, the project grew partly out of Salopeks love of literature, particularly the tradition of quest stories that dates back to Greek epic poetry. Such stories gave his journey its structure and mission: Follow a prehistoric route in an effort to understand the modern world more deeply. By inching slowly across the surface of the Earth, as Salopek puts it, he wants to discover links between stories, like globalization and climate change, that are covered in a really granular, segmented way by the media.

The project is funded by the National Geographic Society and the Knight Foundation. Salopek writes stories about his travels, transcribes interviews with people he meets, and posts photographs and videos at nationalgeographic.com and outofedenwalk.com. Every 100 miles he snaps a picture of the ground and the sky, takes a panoramic shot of his surroundings, records some audio, and then asks the nearest person three questions: Who are you? Where do you come from? Where are you going?

Salopek spent much of his career covering developing countries, winning two Pulitzer Prizes reporting on Africa for the Chicago Tribune. As a result, he is comfortable in conditions Westerners might consider extreme. Maybe the most important thing that people might find extreme, he says, is the capacity to wait, which the global north seems to find increasingly incomprehensible. The ability to sit under a tree and wait for something to happenits a way of perceiving the world that is getting rarer as the world becomes more wired.

The objective is to walk for seven years straightno coming home for holidays. His long-suffering wife visits him on the road, as do his brothers and sisters. But, Salopek says, Theres no guarantee that in 2020 Im going to be walking onto a beach in Chile. That is the goal, but I reserve the right to stop walking. And that itself becomes part of the journey.

Naomi Sharp is a CJR intern

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On the job

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Michelle Bachelet wins Chile election run off – Video



Michelle Bachelet wins Chile election run off
Michelle Bachelet wins Chile election run off Michelle Bachelet celebrates in Santiago. Photo: 15 December 2013 Evelyn Matthei waves to supporters in Santiag…

By: Amez Videonews

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Michelle Bachelet wins Chile election run off – Video

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Ex-president Michelle Bachelet Wins Chile Poll Run-Off – 16 Dec – Video



Ex-president Michelle Bachelet Wins Chile Poll Run-Off – 16 Dec
Chile Election Bachelet and Matthei Fight in Run Off Chileans are due to go to the polls in a presidential run-off, with Michelle Bachelet widely expected to…

By: WorldBreakingNews

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Ex-president Michelle Bachelet Wins Chile Poll Run-Off – 16 Dec – Video

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