Sunday, February 15, 2009

Latin America sees wave of constitutional votes +

Latin America sees wave of constitutional votes
Saturday, February 14, 2009

Latin American leaders have long amended constitutions or rewritten them entirely to break with the past or simply prolong their rule. A flurry of such efforts accompanied the end of dictatorships in the late 1980s. Here's a look at some of the constitutional rewrites since then:

VENEZUELA: In 1999, President Hugo Chavez won a new constitution less than a year into his term, enhancing human rights protection, giving members of the military the right to vote and allowing the president to run for immediate re-election. In late 2007, voters narrowly defeated his attempt to make 69 more changes aimed at making Venezuela socialist. In a new vote Sunday, Chavez has rebounded with a narrower proposal that would remove term limits on politicians, including himself. Venezuela has had 24 constitutions since independence in 1811.

BOLIVIA: Last month, a proposal by President Evo Morales to give the indigenous majority greater rights and allow him to run for re-election was approved by 62 percent of voters.

ECUADOR: In September, Ecuadoreans overwhelmingly approved a new constitution championed by leftist President Rafael Correa that increased the social safety net for the poor, enhanced the power of the central government and lets Correa run for two more terms. Ecuador has had 20 constitutions since independence in 1822.

COLOMBIA: Colombia's constitution was amended in 2004 to let President Alvaro Uribe serve two consecutive terms; he won re-election in 2006. Supporters are seeking another amendment that would let him begin a third term next year; voters and the Constitutional Court would need to approve the change.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: The Dominican Republic has had an eye-popping 31 constitutions since its 1844 independence. The latest came in 2002, allowing presidents to serve more than one term. Leonel Fernandez won his second term two years later.

GUATEMALA: In a vote that fell largely along racial lines, Guatemalans rejected a 1998 package of 50 amendments intended to enshrine in the constitution the results of U.N.-brokered peace accords that ended a 36-year civil war.

PANAMA: Panamanian voters rejected a 1998 effort by President Ernesto Perez Balladares to establish consecutive re-election.

BRAZIL: Former President Fernando Henrique Cardoso won a constitutional amendment in 1997 allowing elected officials to run for consecutive re-election. He won re-election the following year.

ARGENTINA: Former President Carlos Menem pushed through an amendment in 1994 that expanded the bill of rights, streamlined the legislature and allowed presidential re-election.

PERU: Former President Alberto Fujimori rewrote the constitution in 1993 to allow his re-election, and he won two more terms until fleeing to Japan in 2000 when his government collapsed in a corruption scandal.

Comment: Hell, we should still prosecute the Bush Cabal for crimes against humanity that actually violated the U.S. Constitution! Many Constitutional problems simply arise from governments not enforcing the good laws to ensure order and justice that are already on the law books, such as the Bill of Rights. Remember that one?

When was the last time you read the U.S. Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and/or the Bill of Rights?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?

It is good that These Latin American governments are open to still make modifications to their own Constitutions and should be respected for their flexibiloity. People talk shit about Mexican corruption but the U.S.A. is the most corrupt government in all of human history!

People's basic humane rights are ordained by the Great Creator, by nature and by what is just, fair and right for people based upon our basic humane right to survival and our right to have our basic survival needs met by the powers-that-be. Or else why even have any government or system of laws?!? It always always goes back to and down to our basic survival needs as human beings: food, clothing, shelter, medicine and basic education.

Memory Links:

Education for Liberation!
Peter S. Lopez aka: Peta


No comments: