domingo, 27 de fevereiro de 2011

Noam Chomsky Interview - Human rights in US foreign policy

Noam Chomsky: U.S. is very much in favor of human rights in the enemy countries. So U.S. is greatly in favor of human rights in Iran or in Eastern Europe, but not in the Western domains. Take Eastern Europe and Central America and compare them in the 70’s and 80’s and the post-Stalin era. In the post-Stalin era, human rights were protected much better in Eastern Europe than in Central America. In 1989 the Berlin Wall went down and one week after it 6 leading Latin American intellectuals had their brains blown out by the Salvadorian Special Forces which just came out of the military training at Fort Bragg. Those were people trained to commit several thousands of assassinations in El Salvador beginning with the assassination of the Archbishop. And that was just El Salvador. Guatemala was much worse. But nothing like that happened in Eastern Europe. Havel was punished but his brain never was blown out by the Special Forces trained by the Russians. But we don’t see that, we are not allowed to see that. We are expected to believe and worship our leaders. But if you pay attention to the facts it is pretty obvious. And Obama has changed practically nothing about it. He just made a rhetorical change.

Noam Chomsky Interview - China (Continued)

Noam Chomsky: Remember that China has a big demographic problem. The big Chinese growth period last 20-30 years has been helped enormously by the fact that there was a boom in young workers. This big boom of people 20-30 years old is declining because of one child policy. So China is moving towards a decline in human component that created this growth. China is a significant power that wants to have a role in the world. And it is a military threat as well. Countries in Southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam, have been frightened by China for a thousand years. It is something that the United States never understood. Actually, I visited Hanoi in 1970 when there was a bombing pause and they invited me to lecture right in the middle of the war. As soon as I got there, the first thing they told me to do was to go to a war museum. And in that museum you spend 3 very boring hours watching re-enactment of every battle with the Chinese starting since 12th century. So what they tell you is simple. They don’t care about the Americans because we are across the Ocean, they care about the Chinese. And they still care about the Chinese and so is every other country in the region.

segunda-feira, 21 de fevereiro de 2011

Noam Chomsky Interview - China

Noam Chomsky: China is a poor country obviously. Have a look at the human development index. I think China is ranked around 90. It would be probably lower if you cloud investigate it. They have a closed society and we don’t pretty much know what’s going on in the peasant areas. 90 is pretty low, India another possible threat is 120 something. These are poor countries, very poor countries with a lot of internal problems. Very severe internal problems. China has some of the worst inequality in the world. According to official statistics, which I’m sure are underestimated, China has some 50-60 thousand labor actions every year. So there is a lot of turmoil going on in the labor movement. The government tolerates them when they are targeting foreign corporations like FoxConn, but these are not problems which they can handle easily. They have tremendous environmental problems which are going to get only worse because of the global warming. It is certainly a powerful economy, which is taking control of the commodities prices around the world. Take a look at Saudi Arabia, at the moment half of its oil goes East not West. That’s a big change. So the Chinese are slowly building up a system of influence and power. For example, the United States is deeply concerned about what they call “the Chinese aggressiveness and military buildup”. Pentagon recently reported that Chinese military has now reached the level of one fifth of U.S. expanses in Iraq and Afghanistan. Well, it’s a real threat they say. The Chinese are trying to expand their control in the waters off China to 200 miles limit. Recently there was an article that China is getting very aggressive in the waters off the coast of Okinawa. They have warships going around Okinawa. The U.S. has a large military base over there, which the population of Okinawa has been trying to get rid of for 50 years now. But that’s not aggressiveness. The U.S.’s principle is “we own the world”. And since we own the world, if anybody is disturbing anything anywhere that’s called “aggressiveness”. So if Iran is trying to expand its influence in Iraq we call it “aggressiveness”. But when we invade Iraq and destroy it, we call it “stability”. It’s the same thing with China. If they have war ships off the coast of Okinawa they are “aggressive”. If we have a huge military base in Okinawa that the local population hates that’s “stability”. That’s the way imperial ideology works. Take for example France. The current uprising wave in the Arab world actually began in Western Sahara last November, before the Tunisia revolt. Western Sahara was conquered and occupied by Morocco. It was a brutal, violent occupation, pretty much like in the East Timor. Western Sahara always wanted independence but Morocco wouldn’t permit it and the main supporter of Morocco was France. When the uprising took place in Western Sahara last November, the Moroccans went in and smashed it. There was an effort for UN inquiry but it was blocked by France, which would not allow Morocco to be investigated. That’s another example of imperial ideology and still France is not as powerful as the United States. […]

Noam Chomsky Interview - Egypt and the Middle East

Noam Chomsky: What happens in Egypt is up to the Egyptians. The Muslim Brotherhood is organized. The dictatorship that the U.S. supported crashed all the secular and labor movements. So what are left are the remnants. Bear in mind that the U.S., Britain, France traditionally supported radical Islam. Consistently they supported radical Islam against secularism. The most dramatic case is Saudi Arabia. It is a center of radical Islam and fundamentalism. The center of funding for jihadi terror and it is the leading ally of the West. The U.S. relations with Israel reached its current stage in 1967. What happened then? There was a war between Saudi Arabia and Egypt, a proxy war in Yemen. And it was basically a conflict between radical Islamic fundamentalism and secular nationalism. The U.S. and the West generally supported radical Islamic fundamentalism. They didn’t like secular nationalism because secular nationalism, as we think about it, does speak about and implements a notion of using the natural resources of the region mainly for the region. […]

The second major center of radical Islam is Pakistan. Why? Well, that’s another of Ronald Reagan’s legacies. Zia ul-Haq, who was the most awful of Pakistan’s many dictators, was radically Islamizing the country with Saudi funding and U.S. support. In fact it relates to the nuclear issue too. The Reagan Administration pretended that they didn’t know that Pakistan was developing nuclear weapons so they could continue support for his radical islamization of the country. Now we’ve got a situation in Pakistan where, as the WikiLeaks revealed, the American ambassador is warning Washington that U.S. policies in Afghanistan and Pakistan are raising the threat that radical Islamists may gain access to fissile material. Where does that come from? It comes from the U.S. policies in the 80’s. Those things don’t come out of nowhere. So now when you hear the West worrying about the Muslim Brotherhood you must laugh. Especially Britain and the United States, but France too, because they were supporting radical Islam for years.

Entrevista Noam Chomsky

De volta apos uma longa ausencia. Num computador adquirido nos EUA, por isso sem acentos.

Tive oportunidade de realizar uma entrevista a Noam Chomsky com mais 2 colegas de MBA no Stata Building do MIT, em Boston. Neste fabuloso edificio, tivemos oportunidade de ter uma entrevista informal com Noam Chomsky acerca de variados assuntos tais como o papel dos novos instrumentos de "social media" como o Facebook e Twitter no desencadear de novas revolucoes e como veiculo de comunicacao de politica externa, a revolucao no Egipto, a politica externa dos EUA no Medio Oriente, o despertar da China como potencia mundial, a Presidencia de Obama e o estado actual do Partido Republicano.

Esta entrevista foi realizada por mim em parceria com Sebastian Aulich do European Courier e Yiannis Rogan.

quarta-feira, 16 de fevereiro de 2011

Desemprego em Portugal atinge os 10,8% em 2010

Mais um triste recorde batido pelo actual governo de Portugal.

Augusto Mateus defende demolição de estádios do Euro 2004

São mais de 13 milhões de euros que as autarquias de Braga, Aveiro, Coimbra, Leiria, Faro e Loulé pagam anualmente, e tudo somado, à banca pela amortização e juros das dívidas contraídas pela construção dos seus estádios de futebol.

Um luxo demasiado caro para estas cidades que quiseram entrar no roteiro do Europeu de 2004, algumas para receber apenas dois jogos. Desde então, o seu estado normal é vazio, ou quase.

A venda e/ou a demolição de alguns destes recintos parecem ser as soluções para travar o agravamento da dívida e a asfixia das câmaras.

Em declarações ao 'DN', Augusto Mateus considera mesmo que estes são os únicos caminhos para os recintos de Leiria e Aveiro, de forma a controlar os custos das autarquias.

"A construção dos estádios foi uma precipitação, uma opção pelo presente. Estes projectos foram derrotados, não têm viabilidade", comentou Augusto Mateus.

Fonte: Jornal Económico de 11/02/2011, versão on-line

segunda-feira, 14 de fevereiro de 2011

Sound and Vision

segunda-feira, 7 de fevereiro de 2011

Bairro Português de Malaca

Outro Tempo, Outro Espaço


quarta-feira, 2 de fevereiro de 2011

A cada vez menor importância do sector ferroviário em Portugal

Dos 231 milhões de viagens de comboio realizadas em 1988, passou-se para 131 milhões em 2009, uma redução de 43 por cento.

Ontem, foi retirado o serviço ferroviário regional em mais 138 quilómetros de vias-férreas, depois de, no ano passado, se terem encerrado 144 quilómetros de linhas (com a promessa de reabilitação que não aconteceu).

O número de passageiros por quilómetro percorrido) era de 6 milhões em 1988, baixou para 5,6 em 1991 e é agora de 3,7 milhões.

A quota de mercado do caminho-de-ferro no transporte de passageiros afundou-se em cerca de 66 por cento entre 1990 e 2008.

Não surpreende, assim, que nos países da Europa Ocidental Portugal seja o único que, em 20 anos, perdeu passageiros na ferrovia. É certo que a França, a Holanda e a Suíça tiveram crescimentos modestos - "só" conseguiram transportar cerca de 30 por cento mais de passageiros -, mas isso resulta de serem mercados maduros onde a tradição de andar de comboio é quase ancestral. A Grã-Bretanha, país que foi o berço do caminho-de-ferro, cresceu 53 por cento em 20 anos, a sua vizinha Irlanda 57 por cento, a Bélgica 55,2 por cento e a Alemanha 83 por cento, em parte graças à aposta em comboios de alta velocidade que são um verdadeiro luxo.

Fonte: Público on-line 2 Fev. 2011-02-02
Extractos de um artigo de Carlos Cipriano

Extensão da linha ferroviária – Portugal Continental - ao longo dos anos:

1910: 2898 Km
1974: 3563 Km
2006: 2839 Km
2011: 2600 Km ?