Friday, September 04, 2009

Where I agree with the coup government

After the State Department announced more sanctions, one response from coup supporters is that the country needs to depend less on the United States, and strengthen ties to Europe and Asia. I couldn't agree more, and it is unfortunate that it took this much conflict to hammer the point home. It certainly would be difficult, since the economic relationship is also deeply tied to immigration. For example, in the past Mel Zelaya himself has traveled to Washington to lobby the Bush administration about immigration crackdowns.

Regardless, diversification would be a good strategy for the country. The ultimate goal is to get to a point where you don't have everyone looking to the U.S. to resolve political crises.

Days since the coup: 68
Days until the scheduled presidential election: 86


Nell 5:57 PM  

The United States government and U.S. corporations have encouraged the government and business owners of Honduras (one and the same) to intensify their commitment to the economic model that puts almost all of Honduras' eggs in the basket of the U.S. export-import economy. Moves away from that have met with harsh criticism from the preceding administration and this one. The bipartisan consensus on foreign policy is that neoliberal economic policies = democracy. That's what "democracy promotion" funds are all about; why else are we funding COHEP under that rubric?

It's the large role of the United States government in creating and sustaining that economic model throughout the region and in creating this particular "political crisis" that makes the U.S. responsible for doing more to end it. The entrenched power, sense of entitlement and impunity of the oligarchs who made the coup comes from their wealth but also from their experience of near-continuous support from the U.S.

Constitutional changes that would give Honduras' majority more participation in making policy are the most likely route to economic policies that diversify the current hyper-dependence on the U.S. economy. Here's hoping they come soon. It will be interesting to track the reaction here and elsewhere.

Slave Revolt,  10:21 AM  

Greg, face it: you have more in common with the rightwing coup government than the more democratic and progressive opossition.

For one thing, you share the same questionable assumptions, the naivete, the amnesia, and the antipathy toward anti-capitalist efforts to cast off layers of oppression that become enbedded in the political psyche.

When I was in Honduras the political oppression was obvious: child prostitution, generalized squalor, lack of education, enemic nationalism, massive pro-empire propaganda, etc.

Despite all of this, there were progressive people attempting to heal and make progressive, democratic reforms.

But these are the people being violated by the pro-empire security apparatus, being terrorized by the folks fanatical in their belief that Chavez and Castro want to take over Honduras as their own personal commie playground. (Talk about comprador/imperialist projection. It is the greedy elites that desire to hord every resource and super-exploit labor.)

When you dishonestly impune Chavez and the Bolivarian-aligned governments as being totalitarian in scope, and soft-pedal the crimes and oppression that are part and parcel of the US-allied governments (Colombia, Peru, Mexico), you are actually performing a function that bolster's the US grip on the region.

You honestly think that elites whose power depends on US help in wacking left-populist movements want less US involvement in the region?

US dependence is the sine qua non of their very existence. Unchecked and unchallenged, the people of the region will opt for regional alliances, government ownership of resources and critical industries, etc.

But, of course, you know this--you just have to play a cool game that you don't in order to secure an academic position in the bowels of empire. You are jockeying for a position inside the empire's brain--which in the curious morphology of the US is pretty close to the empire's ass, given the shit that we see coming out of the empire's mouth most of the time.

  © Blogger templates The Professional Template by 2008

Back to TOP