2011-10-29 The Economics of Occupy Wall Street, Part II: Citizens United v. FEC

"I hope we shall ... crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government to trial and bid defiance to the laws of our country." -- Thomas Jefferson

Earlier this month, a group within the Occupy Wall Street movement (OWS) published a draft of the 99 Percent Declaration, which proposes solutions to economic inequality in the U.S. and announces a plan to organize a national convention to be held in Philadelphia on July 4, 2012. Still a work-in-progress, the Declaration calls for the election of delegates who would draft and vote on a non-partisan petition of grievances to be presented to the U.S. President, each member of Congress, the Supreme Court, and all federal candidates in the 2012 elections. If, warns the Declaration, the government does not act within one year to remedy its stated grievances, OWS will form a third political party to run in every Congressional seat in 2014 and 2016.

2011-06-04 WikiLeaks: Македонските избори: Владејачката партија победи - земјата губи

Претходните парламентарни избори во Македонија, одржани на 1.07.2008 годин.поминаа, со голем број груби прекршоци. Набљудувачите констатирале дека победата на владејачката и тогашната партија ВМРО-ДПМНЕ била постигната со цената на заплашување и насилство врз гласачите, со измами, со ставање на повеќе гласачки ливчиња од едно лице, или гласачки ливчиња од името на непостоечки гласачи. Терминот кој е употребен во извештајот на Американската амбасада од Скопје [08SKOPJE359] е "ballot-stuffing", што буквално значи "филовите со гласачки ливчиња" и е познат од средината на 19 век во САД, како едно од средствата за манипулација на резултатите од раните години на демократските општества и такви во примарената фаза на својот развој. И покрај повиците на меѓународната заедница и медиумите за слободни и фер избори и осудата на непопреченото спроведување, гласањето во Македонија е прогласено за нормално и законско од власта.

Во програмата детално се опишуваат случаи на убиства во изборниот ден, како и такви на попречување на граѓани да го искористат законското право на глас. Други биле директно заплашувани, откако побарале контакт да се пожалат на меѓународните набљудувачи. Амбасадорката, Џилијан Миловановиќ опишува и ги пренесува потреснате услови, поминаа изборите за парламент пред 4 година - масовно полнење на гласачки ливчиња и согорување на неудобни билтени; употреба на оружје; физички напади врз набљудувачи и државните службеници вклучени во изборите; уништување на цели изборни гласачки кути и гонене на меѓународни и локални набљудувачи на изборите, групни и семејни гласања и сл.

2011-05-22 WikiLeaks: Bulgarian 2009 elections - Garbage In, Garbage Out


Bulgaria held European elections in June 2009, followed by the national parliament elections in July. The main political players are analysed by the american ambassador in Sofia Nancy McEldowney in two cables sent to Washington DC and reported by the investigative journalism site Bivol, a local partner of Wikileaks. [09SOFIA301] [09SOFIA264]

The cables give a rough picture of a political landscape plagued by corruption, shady businessmen, vote buying and accused criminals running for MP.

Bulgarian media stressed the direct translation of the title "Garbage in, Garbage out", adding that not all of the Bulgarian MPs deserve to be named "garbage", but many of them are looking after their private interests first, through heavy lobbying. "Now, it's up to them to reject this qualification. With a radical change" - popular daily "Troud" wrote in an OpEd.

English language site Novinite stressed the comparison of Ataka (Attack) party and the ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms. They are each other's "best enemies", according to the cable.

"Local analysts say Ataka and MRF need each other to frighten their constituents into voting." the cable says.

Currently, Ataka is the ruling centrist-right GERB's only parliamentary ally.

2011-02-11 The problems of the presidential succession in Egypt

The struggle for democracy, unleashed indirectly in Egypt by the leaking of thousands of secret documents from the U.S. Diplomatic service, is particularly complicated due to Egypt’s political situation in the Middle East. The necessary succession of the Mubarak regime results in a very fragile state of affairs, as the important players in area, Israel and the U.S. on one hand, and Palestine, Syria and Iran on the other, all know how important it is to count the future Egyptian president as an ally. Precisely because of this, in a 2007 cable 07CAIRO1417 the U.S. ambassador in Cairo says that “Presidential succession is the elephant in the room of Egyptian politics. Despite incessant whispered discussions, no one in Egypt has any certainty about who will succeed Mubarak, or how the succession will happen”.

As of now, Egypt is entering its third week of paralysis; protests and riots are still widespread across the country and without a sign of relent. President Mubarak has hidden himself and even though he has come out to assure the nation that he will not run for President again, the government’s stance on the matter indicates that he does not want to step down from his office, but rather that he prefers to stall and see if the situation calms down. To relieve some tension he shifted power toward Omar Suleiman, the vice-president and the strong arm currently in charge of running the country. This political maneuver is revealing after taking into account the strategic interest from Egypt’s allies, Israel and the U.S. It is obvious that even though the Obama administration has publicly asked Mubarak to step down and allow a democratic transition, they did this knowing that they could never permit a figure such as Amre Moussa’s, the secretary of the Arab League, to lead the country.

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