In the midst of the unrest this year in Venezuela, there was little attention paid in the media to the conditions facing Indigenous peoples in that country and where they stood in regard to the anti-government demonstrations.
While it is important to be well-read and keep up with the news, it can be equally important to make sure the news stories mean something to you personally.
"My husband, Leopoldo Lopez, is in prison for saying what all of Venezuela wanted to hear."
Over the last few months, the price of Brent crude oil lost over 20 percent of its value, dropping below $90 just yesterday and hitting its lowest level in over two years. In consequence, oil producers will no longer be able to rely on oil revenues to pay their bills.
The challenge for regional democracies will be to meet the rising economic and political expectations of their people within a framework of slowing economies, reduced growth, and growing global competition. The political implications are potentially large.
The U.S.'s decision to send soldiers to fight disease says it all. Every problem to the U.S. -- a country which is armed to the teeth and which has become the proverbial hammer of the world -- looks like a nail.
As a feminist, I've always felt deeply conflicted about the whole boob job thing. On one hand, it's both sad and ridiculous that women feel compelled to pay thousands and undergo surgery to attain an ostensibly "more desirable" body.
Crimea, once part of Ukraine, is now part of Russia (at least according to Putin). Yet so far, this dramatic move is being met with relatively weak responses from the United States and Europe.
Justice Vegas is optimistic about Venezuela's future and believes that the democratic process began by Hugo Chavez 15 years ago will continue and grow.
After zigging toward liberalization, by suggesting a reduction in the gasoline subsidy or letting the bolívar devalue, and zagging back away, the only continuity is that Maduro is gradually displacing the original chavista high guard.
South American political elites seem to have jettisoned much of the high minded left idealism of past years in favor of crass economic interests. In a somewhat outlandish turn of events, Brazil has embraced Vladimir Putin, a figure who has desperately sought to end his country's political and diplomatic isolation.
Studying abroad contributes to global, regional and national economies in a significant way. It opens up doors for international trade, commerce and understanding, as well as for peace building, communication, and national security.
Colombian President Santos staked his job on finalizing a peace agreement with the FARC guerrillas. Voters rewarded him with a mandate in June's run-off election, giving him a decisive victory over right-wing challenger Oscar Zuluaga.
I beg to differ with liberals who say the recent U.S. sanctions against individual members of the Venezuelan government are counterproductive. By the same token, I disagree with conservatives who dismiss them for being too light and applaud the White House and Congress efforts to punish Venezuelan drug traffickers and human rights violators for a very simple reason: in the rigged system of justice that Hugo Chavez set up in the country, it is impossible for any member of its repressive political system to ever face justice in a court of law.
The Obama administration last week embarked on a path to break diplomatic relations with Venezuela. But the drama was cut short last night when the Dutch government announced that it would not allow the extradition of Hugo Carvajal, a Venezuelan retired general and military officer whom Washington wanted to bring to trial in U.S. courts.
Once the black market differential is big enough, it also increases the incentive for corruption; unlike selling cocaine, you don't even need risk to leaving this world in a hail of bullets if you can get access to official dollars at 6.3 Bf and sell them for 72 on the black market.