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Friday, September 29, 2006

COLUMN: ARE MIGRANTS, REMITTANCES, CREATING A GENERATION OF CRIMINALS IN LATIN AMERICA?

Here's an issue that is seldom talked about: the possible link between immigration, family remittances and Latin America's rising crime rates. Millions of Latin American migrants in the United States are absentee fathers whose children are being raised by permissive grandparents. Many of these children are growing up on the streets, and become criminals. Read the full column here, and let me know what YOU think.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

COLUMN: 700-MILE BORDER FENCE WILL BE A MONUMENTAL WASTE OF MONEY

White House spin doctors are painting it differently, but it's becoming increasingly clear that President Bush's Republican Party, forced to choose between courting Hispanic voters or the xenophobic right in the race for the Nov. 7 congressional elections, has opted for the latter. The Senate's decision to move ahead with plans to erect a 700-mile fence along the border with Mexico is a monumental waste of money. Read the full column here to find out why. Do you agree?

Thursday, September 21, 2006

COLUMN: WILL CHAVEZ WIN U.N. SECURITY COUNCIL SEAT? AND IF HE DOES, WILL IT MATTER?

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, whose megalomania seems to rise in direct proportion to his country's oil income, will be fighting for his most coveted prize over the next few weeks: winning a seat on the U.N. Security Council, from where he could grab the biggest headlines around the world. Read the full column here, and let me know whether you agree.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

COLUMN: JUST WHAT LATIN AMERICA NEEDED -- A NEW ARMS RACE

When key U.S. and Latin American policy makers met at The Miami Herald's Americas Conference last week, some of them raised eyebrows by raising an old issue they said is coming back -- a regional arms race.
''Latin America has begun a new arms race,'' Costa Rican President and Nobel Peace Prize winner Oscar Arias told the conference's opening night. In a later interview, he told me what should be done about it. Read the full column here. What do YOU think?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

COLUMN: IN LATIN AMERICA, POPULISM AND OIL PRICES GO TOGETHER

There are two ways of reading today's headlines about Latin America: You can say that this week's Movement of Non-Aligned Nations meeting in Havana illustrates the triumphal return of radical leftist regimes in the region, or you can say that it marks the beginning of their end. Read the full column to find out which of the two I think it is. What do YOU think?

Monday, September 11, 2006

COLUMN: IS AFRICA PERFORMING BETTER THAN LATIN AMERICA?

Just when Latin America is waking up to the fact that China, India and Central Europe have surpassed it in the global race for investments and economic growth, they may soon have to add a new region to the list -- Africa. Only months after United Nations figures showed that Africa's economy grew faster than Latin America's last year, a new report from the World Bank shows that Africa -- while still behind in overall business friendliness -- has overtaken Latin America in a ranking of world regions that have shown the most progress in creating a good business environment. Read the full column here. Your comments?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

TEN REASONS WHY MEXICO IS LIKELY TO REMAIN STABLE

Contrary to forecasts that Mexico's President-elect Felipe Calderón will not be able to rule effectively because of defeated leftist candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador's vow to make the country ungovernable, there are 10 powerful reasons to believe that Calderón is likely to weather the storm. First, while Calderón won the July 2 election by only 234,000 votes, he will have the largest legislative bloc in both houses of Congress. Sure, he will still need votes from other parties to pass major reforms, but he will have significantly greater representation in Congress than outgoing President Vicente Fox. Read the full column here. I'm interested in your comments.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

MEXICO'S HOUR OF TRUTH - HOY ES EL DIA

MADRID, Spain - As Mexican electoral authorities are about to proclaim center-right candidate Felipe Calderon as Mexico's new president-elect later today, one thing is clear -- international public opinion is increasingly seeing leftist runer-up Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (who is not conceding defeat) as a sore loser. Here in Spain, the influential daily El Pais, whose reporting was very pro-Lopez Obrador before the July 2 election, carried a devastating editorial against Lopez Obrador on Sunday. Read key portions of it in the comments section (in Spanish,) or the entire editorial in www.elpais.es. As seen from Europe, Lopez Obrador is rapidly losing the international public opinion battle.