MercoPress, en Español
Get our news on your inbox! Suscribe x
Montevideo, March 20th 2019 - 19:45 UTC
Argentina is offering a reward for information leading to the recovery of money from a case in which former President Cristina Fernandez is accused of leading a corruption scheme involving officials and business leaders. Read full article
This article is priceless! It implies the governments suspicions of the enormity of the criminal fraud committed by Cristina probably far exceeds 13 million US Dollars.
A wise move as the wicked witch probably guilty of stealing ten times that amount...
the criminal fraud committed by Cristina probably far exceeds 13 million US Dollars.
... the wicked witch probably guilty of stealing ten times that amount...
Only ten times? More like 500x if some reports are to be believed...
You're probably right.
This latest action reveals the desperation of a government that has totally lost control on the economy and is unable to do anything about it. As a result, president Mauricio Macri needs to come up with some entertainment to push the bad news away from the newspapers' front pages.
Relentless propaganda by Argentina's powerful media conglomerates have installed the narrative that former president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and officials in her government stole money, getting immensely rich as a result.
Problem is, after three years of investigations, judges and prosecutors have been unable to come up with the smoking gun, that is, the money -- any money -- allegedly stolen. They searched, broke walls and ceilings, took backhoes and dug CFK's properties in Patagonia. The justice system searched for offshore accounts but got nothing, however finding a few Macri accounts in the process.
Now the proverbial chickens are coming home to roost -- Argentina's economy is devastated amid high inflation and shrinking wages; punishing interest rates, imports kill what remains of the domestic productive sector, forcing local industries to close doors; dropping consumption hits hard the population and the retail sector.
Worse, international markets are unwilling to buy Argentine bonds anymore; the first $15 billion lent by the IMF have been spent in unsuccessful attempts to support the peso -- and the D word is being whispered more often.
Time is up, Mr. Macri.
Enrique Massot - Funny how the only South American economies in trouble are Brazil, Argentina and the humanitarian disaster in Venezuela - I wonder what they have in common. Is it the fact that they were ruled by leftist populists over the past decade which increased spending to unsustainable levels? Why aren't right-wing Colombia, Chile, Peru in economic crisis? Macri is indeed facing the chickens coming home to roost - The chickens of 12 years of Kirchnerist populist mismanagement, overspending, and money printing.
In the 1970s Argentina had 7% poverty and spending was less than 20% of GDP. Today spending is 44% of GDP and poverty is 30%. We tripled the size of the State and tripled the poverty rate. Seems like socialist economics always results in the same failure. Serious socialist parties in Europe and Latin America have long embraced the free market.
You lost on the marketplace of ideas a long time ago. 1989 to be precise.
Unbelievably, some will still come up and tell you -- without smiling -- that nearly three years of free-market politics did not exist and that today's Argentina economic mess is the fault of the previous government.
Why, of course. Nestor Kirchner took office in 2003, when Argentina was still paralysed by its 2001 payment default - within two years and a half, the economy was firing in all cylinders and on Jan. 3, 2006, Kirchner paid off the entire debt with the IMF.
Fast forward to 2015: Mauricio Macri takes office Dec. 10. Less than three years later, all economic indicators are in the red, the country's credit card has been maxed up, and Macri has run to the IMF for a hand out.
The difference? One of those governments was a doer and did what it was supposed to do: govern.
The other spent nearly three years complaining about the previous government while refusing to own up to its catastrophic decisions.
Enrique, did you purposely forgot to mention the Cristina years in government, when Argentina started to go down the pan financially. probably best not to mention those years.
At the pace things are going under Mauricio Macri (refer to MP's newest story) even the worst years of Cristina will feel like heaven for beleaguered Argentines.
That is the reason CFK was going up in the polls until the government had the brilliant idea of releasing photocopies of notebooks compromising CFK (hey, driver/writer saw her in pajamas once).
Now the question is, for how long the citizens' attention will remain diverted before their day-to-day economic difficulties take over again?
Ever notice how Enrique keeps madly barking...
Communism is a confirmedly failed exercise in the allocation of resources.
This is an unassailable truth.
As you move from pure capitalism economic inefficiency increases.
The communist tendencies of rg society coupled with its collective morally degraded character owing to the legacy contributions of its cultural origins is a yoke that continues to crush it - time and time again.
Anglo Turnip Golfcronie above says...:
*** Enrique, did you purposely forgot to mention the Cristina years in government, when Argentina started to go down the pan financially. probably best not to mention those years.***
Anglo Turnip Golfcronie..., did you purposely forgot to mention that..., during the Cristina years in government..., when Argentina started to go down the pan financially (2008 - onwards)..., the whole World was going down the pan financially...?
Probably best not to mention those years..., Huhhhhh...?
I live in Buenos Aires and as each day passes the news of this corruption scandal gets more bewildering and astonishing.
This will far exceed the Brazil Lava Jato cases by a very long way, yet the most frustrating aspect is that woman's senatorial immunity.
1) I really hope you are right and that ***this will far exceed the Brazil Lava Jato cases by a very long way***
It would please this auld Argentinean humongously to see justice done..., and watch hundereds and hundreds of corrupted and corruptors get their deserved punishment...
2) I just want to ask you...
Why you Think that...: ***The most frustrating aspect is that woman's senatorial immunity***...?
That senatorial inmunity evaporates the very same second when the judicial system determines that she is guilty as charged..., you know...?
You want Justice............................. or Circus...?
This will far exceed the Brazil Lava Jato cases...
It would be good news for Argentina if it did.
The cartelization of public works in Argentina started at least during the military dictatorship of the 1970s and continued unabated through each following government. Breaking the cycle would require strong political will and broad citizen consensus.
Preliminary signs, unfortunately, indicate otherwise.
For starters, Brazilian prosecutors went pretty strong against bribing companies.
In Argentina, the government has indicated that public works companies won't be punished by the actions of their employees. This, of course, is disingenuous. No company will be paying millions in bribes without the knowledge and approval of their top executives.
The Macri government will try to walk a fine line to reach the top prize -- former president Cristina Fernandez -- without producing friendly fire against valuable people such as president's cousin Angelo Calcaterra, who gave testimony and walked back home in record time.
DT, why are you so ashamed of your land of origin?
Chronic, why are you so balderdashingly smug of your land of origin?
Why, of course. Nestor Kirchner took office in 2003, when Argentina was still paralysed by its 2001 payment default - within two years and a half, the economy was firing in all cylinders and on Jan. 3, 2006, Kirchner paid off the entire debt with the IMF.
May I ask with what money ? asking only because Lula did much the same thing....at the cost of the internal debt, which tripled overnight...he simply internalized the debt....he didn't lie (about liquidating Brazil's foreign debt), but he conveniently ommitted the fact he had increased the internal debt like hell, and that on this internal debt, interest rates were more than double of that paid to the IMF and foreign banks....a populist move which compromised even more of Brazil's tax revenue...who won ? the local banks.....and which were all very grateful to Lula. So much for the people's man ....it looked like a 'great' swap, but only to his ignorant followers who don't understand the first think about economics.
One more, perhaps the fact that Macri took over after 12 'K' years, similar to Temer (poor sod) taking over after 14 PT years, is a burden too heavy for any government to carry ?
Lula took over after 8 FHC years, with inflation controlled, the commodity boom on the horizon, and a stable economy....what could go wrong, with revenue pouring in and promises to get rid of poverty ? Lula's popularity skyrocketed. Unfortunately, so did his greed....someone sets the table and someone else eats the meal...it isn't the first time.
Sure, JB. Temer is a poor sod and Brazilians are a bunch of idiots who don't understand the first think about economics.
There is always some rational to question popular governments - the fact that no government is perfect will always leave some door open to criticism. But the millions of people who saw their living conditions effectively improve during Lula da Silva presidency, you can't convince them of the contrary. All you can do is to seek some comforting solidarity here in MP threads.
Same as for Lula goes for Juan Peron, Nestor Kirchner and Cristina Fernández. None of them were perfect, but they wanted to improve the living conditions of workers and that fact made them stand out.
The following paragraph of yours is very telling:
Lula took over after 8 FHC years, with inflation controlled, the commodity boom on the horizon, and a stable economy....what could go wrong, with revenue pouring in and promises to get rid of poverty ? Lula's popularity skyrocketed.
Oh yes, you acknowledge that. Then it comes: ”Unfortunately, so did (Lula's) greed.
Sure. A judge found conviction” if not facts, that Lula had accepted an apartment as bribe.
Very smart way of preventing Lula from surely becoming next Brazil's president.
Just for your kind info...
The PRECISE words of the judge in the Lula case were that he had a...:
***Conviction born from the set of indicators.***
NO J U S T I C E...
Paying double interest isn't great, but aren't there some advantages to internalising the debt? Presumably much of the interest paid would stay in Brazil instead of going to other countries? Plus it gives the government full control over the economy again.
Re Brazilian round of presidential candidates:
We do have the other kind of car thief in England too, who steal cars for profit. When I lived in a semi-bad area, my friend's motorbike was stolen from outside my house a couple of times, and each time the police found it after a few weeks and gave it back to him. I don't know what happened to whoever nicked it, though.
the laws should contemplate every possible situation.
It should try to be comprehensive, but it's impossible to anticipate every possibility, that is why judges in England have some discretion and can even make new law if it's a situation that never came up before.
in Brazil... repeat offences carry no extra sentence
I can see why you'd object to that. You just get a revolving door from prison to the street. And now I have another question: most trials have no jury, does the judge know about the defendant's previous record? In England the jury is not allowed to know so they can't be biased, but the judge knows when deciding the sentence.
”it's unlikely (rational) voters will ever feel they are being punished because their would-be candidate was barred from running
Kind of ironic you posted this on an article headlined: Brazilian round of presidential candidates debate takes off...without Lula da Silva”. Some high percentage of Brazilians won't be able to vote for their preferred candidate in October. Maybe it was hard to bar candidates in the past, it might be easier from now on...
Bzlns are a bunch of idiots who “don't understand the first thing abt economics.”
generally speaking, yes...you obviously have no idea how deficient schooling is here, or how the ignorant have trouble understanding how things work...you know, cause & effect ?
You insist on millions who saw their lives improve under Lula....if that were true, where are they now ? it was a fleeting, false sensation', shattered asa the PT-created recession hit them....give me 'some' credit...I saw it then and I see it now.
Your adoration of Lula, Peron etc, is understandable through yr warped, populistic point of view..
You don't agree Lula took over after 8 FHC years, with inflation controlled, the commodity boom on the horizon, and a stable economy.. So, is it a lie ?? Think what you want, I know no amount of proof will convince you.
Paying double interest isn't great, but aren't there some advantages to internalising the debt?...none that I know of, except kidding the lesser educated part of the population and boosting your poularity...It's a financial disaster. The interest went to banks, which got richer, and transferred a good part abroad...it doesn't necessarily 'filter' back into the economy. It was populist move, w/ no advantage other than to the banks, 'n being able to gloat, we now have no foreign debt...at one hell of a cost.
can even make new law if it's a situation that never came up before...” right, jurisprudence ...in a country where it works. AFAIK, only murder crimes go to trial...as to the judge knowing the defendant's previous record (if a reoffender), it's a bit hard to not know it, but it cannot be used against him in another trial.
Yes, also ironic that some high percentage of Brazilians don't realize what a crook their preferred candidate is....
Well, if justice starts to work efficiently, and corrupt politicians are punished (still VERY few), there IS hope it might be easier from now on....but I wouldn't hold my breath.
Damn, does everyone in Brazil send their money abroad? It's not a wonder the country never has any.
it's a bit hard to not know it, but it cannot be used against him in another trial.
Not officially. No one can just forget what they know and be impartial, that's why drug trials and experiments always have to be double blind. But that's one of the downsides of not having a jury. That lawyer Terry is always quoting seems to know what he's talking about, and he said Brazil's justice system is seriously outmoded and needs reform.
Re Lula, I'd like to know how many people believe he's innocent, vs the number who think he's guilty and want to vote for him anyway. But, while corrupt politicians getting punished is a good thing, there's still plenty of reason to worry about the justice system being abused.
Re your post on Brazil farmers:
”I don't think the situation (safety-wise) of where the asylum seeker is coming from should oblige the potential host country any more or any less
Asylum is supposed to be about fleeing a dangerous situation, not picking the best country to immigrate to. If the US, say, would accept Venezuelans coming from Brazil, shouldn't they also accept Brazilians? It wouldn't make much sense to allow one and not the other.
Anyway, I'm glad to hear your government is doing something all the refugees, though it hasn't stopped violence erupting in one town.
Before the Fed Govt decided to interfere with the freight rates...”
Sounds like the truckers and agribusiness failed to negotiate a sensible agreement and had to turn to the government to sort it out. But maybe that's partly expectations; the truckers went on strike demanding cheaper diesel, not better rates for delivery, and I still don't really understand why. And surely the agribusiness realises their goods won't get delivered at all unless they at least cover the costs. Building their own fleets might be more reliable, but they'll still have to pay for fuel.
What is cabotage?
...does everyone in Brazil send their money abroad? anyone who can and is sensible...Brazil's never been a great place for locals to invest their cash, 'n relatively risky.
OK, you can't just wipe prior knowledge out of yr head, that's why a jury can only consider evidence allowed at a trial,'n besides, it's why jurors are selected by their capacity to be impartial. Agree Brazil's justice system is kinda obsolete...it's usually slow (STF), can be subject to undue influence (TSE with Temer/Dilma), but since you are referring to Terry's lawyer, must be about talking about Lula...but I really believe that for once they got it right. Many new, young prosecutors & judges are earnestly trying to modernize things, but the 'old' school, 'n Congress are loath to let them.
Lula's rejection is over 65%...and don't know how that relates to those who might believe in his innocence or would still vote for him.
How many asylum seekers (in Europe) tried to get into countries where benefits were the most generous ? Don't think their intention is to ' just get away' from danger. I still think each country has the ultimate right to decide who to let in.
In Pacaraima, 4 VZs attacked 'n seriously injured the owner of a small supermarket....not the first story of VZn crime there, plus the fact that 1000s pouring in have stretched the town's resources to beyond its capacity ; some are receiving money to pay rent, disease has been brought in (measles), making the locals angry...thus the violence.
The truckers turned to government which established freight rates unilaterally without consulting the agribusiness...so the result was no surprise. The raise in fuel sparked the paralyzation, but agribusiness /the population paid the price. Problem is that people complain abt govt interference, yet don't think twice about resorting to government to solve their disputes...
Private fleets will still pay for fuel, but will be in control.
Cabotage is coastal shipping.
anyone who can and is sensible
Very reasonable, and very bad for the country.
Yes, the lawyer was Geoffrey Robertson and he was talking about Lula, and one of the things he objects to is the prior knowledge thing:
This system offers no separation between the role of the investigating judge, who supervises and approves the work of the police and the prosecutors, and that of the trial judge, who should hear cases without bias or preconceptions. In Brazil, both of these roles are played by the same person, even when, as in Lula's case, the investigation has included prejudicial findings against Lula by the judge.
Besides, several people who ought to know have said that the evidence against Lula would not have been enough to convict him in other countries.
I think at least some of the 'new, young prosecutors & judges' are indeed trying to modernise things and root out corruption, but that doesn't mean they are immune to bias and making mistakes. It's the system that is supposed to prevent that, and - I'm guessing - can only be reformed by Congress. It's probably in the constitution.
Lula's rejection is over 65%
How can that be true when a story today said he has 37.3% of voter intentions?
Many of the asylum seekers in Europe tried to get to Germany which is richer and has more jobs, or to Sweden which is more friendly to immigrants. This is hardly surprising but isn't the point of asylum, and those countries accepted them to try and take the pressure off Greece and Italy, not because they had to.
Oh, and some tried to reach Britain which doesn't have better benefits than France but does have lower unemployment and no ID cards.
It seems the refugees in Roraima are already causing problems and provoking resentment, I wonder if it'll get as bad as the crisis in Europe before long? Anyway, they're unlikely to turn up on your doorstep any time soon, getting from Pacaraima to São Paulo is a tad more difficult than Greece to Germany (and over twice as far).
ME : ”“anyone who can 'n is sensible” YOU: reasonable, very bad for the country.
Tell me about it...in '71, my old man invested heavily in the stock exchange....one of my Univ professors, Delfim Neto (ex-Finance Minister), warned us the signs were not good, so best sell....Told my father to get out, buy real-estate or send some abroad. He refused, his answer, It's not good for the country...told him to send the country to hell...but was no use, and he lost 90% of his financial assets....so excuse me for not thinking like my father... because, what did Brazil do for him ?
...as in Lula's case, the investigation has included prejudicial findings against Lula by the judge...here we go again....so I must ask, what prejudicial findings did Moro use against Lula ? that's GR's spin on the conviction....I do not buy it. What evidence used against Lula was not directly connected to PB/OAS/Triplex ? The fallacy here is, it's not the 'judge' who investigates. And in other countries, Lula very likely would not have managed to set up a criminal organization in government, either..
but that doesn't mean they are immune to bias and making mistakes....well, from that point of view, no prosecutor, or judge, from any country, is.
Re Lula's voter intentions at 37,3%, gotta ask, 'where' (city, town, region ?) was the poll taken ? a lot doesn't add up. The fact that some think he should run, defines Brazil.
Re the asylum seekers in EU, all I can say is that the news made a point of emphasizing that many were not content to stay in their first country of entry, but wanted to go to others, where benefits were better....the refugees may not have considered this the most important issue, but I don't believe it didn't cross their minds.
The refugees up north are causing problems, even if involuntarily....the federal govt is already taking steps to transfer Venezuelans to other States, and quite frankly I have no problem with them - provided they don't cause trouble
what did Brazil do for him
Enough that he and you decided to stay and get citizenship; but that doesn't require him to be foolish with his money. Besides, losing on the stock market is something that can happen anywhere, and buying real estate or government bonds wouldn't have involved sending the money abroad.
what prejudicial findings did Moro use against Lula
According to GR, Moro said things suggesting he believed Lula guilty before the trial, sent the police to forcibly take him in for questioning, although he always agreed to do it voluntarily, and released wiretaps to the press. Also:
Moro even went as far as to attend the launch party for the Brazilian journalist Vladimir Netto’s book on Operation Car Wash, which depicts Lula in a negative light. At the event, Moro signed copies of the book and posed for photos. Such a scenario would be impossible in the Anglo-American trial system, which rigorously insulates trial judges from the investigative process. Even in Europe, where judges do play an investigative role, they may not try a person whom they have previously indicated may be guilty.
no prosecutor, or judge, from any country, is.
Exactly, which is why you need a system that counteracts bias and corrects mistakes as far as possible. Like having a different judge in charge of the trial who can look at the evidence with fresh eyes.
where was the poll taken?
I found the details here, it says the survey covered 5 regions, 25 'Unidades de Federação' (states + federal district?), and 137 municipalities.
Re the refugees, if the numbers keep increasing they are bound to cause some trouble, just like in Europe. Society can only absorb so many people without difficulty.
Here's a list of asylum applicant benefits from different EU countries. Which would you pick?
OK, my father made foolish decisions, but while he could still salvage 50%, he took our advice, but it was too late- the broker had sold his shares ‘n pocketed the money ; went to court, but despite overwhelming proof, the judge was bought/never gave a decision. So it wasn’t “only” bad decisions. But what did Brazil do for him ? Nothing, except screw him. You can say it was our first direct experience at being robbed/then screwed due to corruption.
“According to GR, Moro said things suggesting he believed Lula guilty, sent police to forcibly take him in for questioning”…Moro could not /did not use any evidence not related to the case ; Moro had already summoned Lula, who publicly stated he would not go…saw him on TV, growling “who the hell does Moro think he is “? that’s why Moro sent the police to get him…but that of course, the lefties – and GR – conveniently ignore. Moro released ONE wiretap to the press, of a phone call in which Dilma told Lula she was sending him a document, appointing him as Cabinet Minister, to give him immunity, and to be used only in case Moro tried to arrest him. Moro simply anticipated Dilma’s attempt to get around the law. The STF then ruled Lula could not be appointed (if to escape Justice);
Funny, the lefties were pissed off at the leak, but not at the contents of the wiretap.
You presume a lot of things without being all that familiar with the case. Vladimir Netto’s book was published May 2016…more than 2 years after the ‘Lavajato’ was ‘officially’ launched, ‘n 2 yrs after Lula & wife were already being investigated…so depicting Lula negatively, at that point, made absolutely no difference. As I’ve said b4, judges do NOT investigate…they use info /evidence supplied by the Fed police ‘n prosecutors.
In 2010, election year, the lefties put out a film extolling Lula’s “virtues”…of course, ‘it’ didn’t depict Lula in a positive light just b4 the election, did it ?
Need some more space for ‘poll’ & asylum seekers, pls.
“the judge was bought/never gave a decision”
You didn’t mention that earlier. Okay, that wouldn’t happen in just any country, so he really did get screwed. And I didn’t mean to say your father definitely made bad decisions, because I don’t know all the circumstances, but rather that I think ordinary people shouldn’t feel obliged to keep their money in Brazil out of patriotism/gratitude/whatever if that would be bad for them, because one person can’t solve the problem all by themselves. It’s something the government needs to fix by building confidence; it might make a difference if THEY didn’t have their money stashed in tax havens.
“Moro released ONE wiretap to the press”
From the Washington Post:
“Moro also released conversations between Lula and his lawyers, between Lula’s wife and their children, and even a conversation between Lula and a political scientist offering advice as a consultant. Some conversations were embarrassing, showing Lula making use of profane language and making politically incorrect and offensive remarks about other politicians and members of the judiciary. These materials, even if accepted in court, would not help convict Lula of any crime. They were, nonetheless, politically devastating for the government, and Rousseff’s impeachment process was put in motion the next day.”
Nor was the content so clearly incriminating as you said, though it could be interpreted that way. Why did Moro release them to the press, rather than just to the STF who were the ones who could and did stop Lula’s appointment? The very fact Moro took drastic action to stop Lula gaining immunity suggests he already thought him guilty, long before the trial, and the same with the book signing. The latter is not the action of an impartial judge.
Re questioning Lula, FdSP says Moro gave avoiding riots as justification for the ‘condução coercitiva’. Did he say anywhere in his dispatch that it was because Lula refused to answer questions?
Didn't think it was relevant until you implied it was all his fault. If Brazil allowed USD a/c's with US interest, could be a solution, but would depend on the degree of confidence you had in govt ; in 1990 Collor confiscated all savings a/cs (over a pre-established, low limit), for 18 mths, paying 6% /yr, with inflation at 1,476 % /yr....other investments were also hit, all with the official excuse of curbing inflation...It had the opposite effect. I went to court to get my money back, and won.
The release of ALL the wiretaps - EXCEPT that one I mentioned btwn Dilma and Lula - was authorized by higher courts....and by then Lula was already up to his neck in sh*t, so it only affected his public image....didn't the people have the right to know who he was ?
Besides, NONE of them were presented as evidence against Lula. The phone call between Dilma 'n Lula, IF you knew the context, was EXTREMELY incriminating. Moro simply anticipated Dilma's attempt to circumvent the law, because had Lula been sworn in, the charges against him would be suspended....his action may not have strictly followed the Law, but AFAIC it was Justice....
suggests he already thought him guilty....I don't see it that way...Moro simply prevented him from escaping trial - which would determine his innocence or guilt, based on evidence. If Lula was innocent why did he resort to immunity ? Not the attitude of an innocent man. But you can read into it whatever you want...as many do, ignoring the evidence.
Moro gave avoiding riots as justification for the ‘condução coercitiva’.
BS. Only the place chosen to question him, was to 'avoid' riots ; he was taken in under coercion because he'd publicly refused to obey the summons. I saw it. The leftie press omits that.
Had you seen his deposition, you'd know he bs'd his way out of most questions.
Then, as now, Lula defiance of the Law/judiciary is part of his strategy to appear a victim.
May I respectfully suggest you get better information.
Commenting for this story is now closed.If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!
Get our news on your inbox!