Barbarity at the US-Mexico Border

Despite repeated claims by the Department of Homeland Security that migrant detention centres in the United States provide sanitary and humane conditions for their inmates, a growing weight of evidence suggests that the United States government is, in fact, presiding over a spectacular violation of the human rights of vulnerable people, including large numbers of … Continue reading Barbarity at the US-Mexico Border

The Mad King and the Decline of American Empire

On May 30 Donald Trump announced that from June 10 he would impose a 5% tariff on all goods imported from Mexico until Mexico stopped undocumented migrants that has entered its national territory through its southern border attempting to enter his country. This latest trade war episode was apparently stimulated by the detention the previous … Continue reading The Mad King and the Decline of American Empire

Dysfunctional Government in Brazil and the Disunited Kingdom of Brexit

In recent weeks I have participated in two academic events dominated by bleak appraisals of the conduct of government by Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil. Participants not only offered strong critiques of the negative social, political, geopolitical, and environmental implications of the government’s actions to date and plans for the future, but also expressed considerable concern … Continue reading Dysfunctional Government in Brazil and the Disunited Kingdom of Brexit

On the latest Minas Gerais mining disaster

At 5.30am this morning an alarm sounded to warn of dangerously high water levels in another dam in Vale's Córrego do Feijão mining complex in Brumadinho, Minas Gerais, where the rupture of a tailings dam last Friday is already known to have killed 37 people, but left hundreds more missing. Although more than a hundred … Continue reading On the latest Minas Gerais mining disaster

Is the Brazilian justice system entering a legitimacy crisis?

Recent weeks have seen both organised and spontaneous protests by citizens against leading figures in the judiciary. An example of the latter was an outburst by passengers on a domestic flight against Supreme Court Judge, Glimar Mendes, notorious for his political sympathies with the PSDB,  a video of which is available on YouTube here. A … Continue reading Is the Brazilian justice system entering a legitimacy crisis?

New publication: Dossiê on Urban Issues in Caderno CRH 31(82), open access

This special section (dossiê) of the Brazilian journal Caderno CRH, edited by Maria Gabriela Hita and myself is now available online, open access through the SCIELO system. All the papers are in Portuguese except for Mariano Perelman's, which is in Spanish. Direct links to the full text papers and abstracts are provided below. You can … Continue reading New publication: Dossiê on Urban Issues in Caderno CRH 31(82), open access

2018: a year for political hope?

It is not exactly easy to be optimistic about what 2018 has in store for either Latin America or Europe. In a sense, my country of citizenship, the United Kingdom, now seems to offer one of the more promising political scenarios around. There is civil war within the country's elite, Theresa May's Conservative government gets … Continue reading 2018: a year for political hope?

What the Tories need to see in Manchester

Today the British Conservative Party begins its annual conference in Manchester. At first sight things have been going well for Manchester recently. But one result of improvements to the city's image as a place to do business, study at university, live, and have fun, in a metropolis that doesn't sleep very much, is that property … Continue reading What the Tories need to see in Manchester

Does Temer’s survival weaken the Brazilian coup?

Yesterday, as expected on the basis of recent developments, unelected Brazilian president Michel Temer survived. 263 deputies in the lower house of congress voted in a plenary session against suspending him from office pending investigation of the charges brought against him by Attorney General Rodrigo Janot, comfortably more than the minimum required to keep Temer … Continue reading Does Temer’s survival weaken the Brazilian coup?

Brazil’s calvary

On July 12, Sergio Moro, the federal judge presiding over the Operation Carwash (Lava Jato) corruption investigations in Curitiba, duly delivered his most important contribution to the coup process in his country. He sentenced former Workers' Party president Lula da Silva to nine and a half years in prison for passive corruption and laundering money received … Continue reading Brazil’s calvary