October 12, 2008

Coming Back From the Brink... (Republished)

MABB © ®

I wanted to republish this post because at this moment the government and the opposition, this time in Congress, are negotiating the modifications to the Morales constitution. I think these, below, are some of the themes they will be talking about. I don't change the words because I want to preserve the original post, but the enumerated items continue to be important.

I bolded the items being talked about now.

Coming back from the brink, that is how Bolivia's motto should cry. The, what I called in prior posts, Bolivian roller coaster has hit a new low point and, if history serves us good, the car is on its way up!

Yesterday, the people (MAS supporters) decided to give Santa Cruz (and us) a brake. They decided to lift the two weeks old blockade until this coming Saturday. They'll continue if the opposition Prefects do not sign the latest government offer.

The offer is to modify the Oruro constitution to include the autonomic statutes. The modifications, however, are only in that chapter. No other part of the constitution should be touched.

That must be a tempting offer but one hard to realize, as the Oruro constitution, in the eyes of the opposition, needs a number of improvements (to say it diplomatically).

The issues to be worked out are the following.

At the top are:
1. Land reform
2. The kind of autonomy

The rest:
1. Definition of the state (pluri, multi, kulti, etc.)
2. Constitutional reform (simple majority vs. absolute majority) --- this is in the Bolivian sense
3. Presidential reelection or term
4. Relevance of private property vs. communal property
5. Communal justice
6. Organization of the state


GS said...

Reminds me of a presentation made by Herbert Klein a couple of years ago. I paraphrase: If one thing is evident in the history of Bolivia it is that Bolivians always drive problems to crises levels and then to the brink of a precipice, but then pull back.

mabb said...

Oh, yes, Klein should know. I am not sure, I might have even read that on his book. I have to check that out. At least the word brink.

mcentellas said...

Klein also wrote some excellent articles in the 1960s about the "military socialism" of David Toro & German Busch. They make for interesting comparisons to recent events.

GS said...

mcentellas, are these articles easily accessible or would I have to have a subscription to an academic journal?

mabb said...

Here you can find them:

German Busch and the Era of "Military Socialism" in Bolivia, Herbert S. Klein, The Hispanic American Historical Review, Vol. 47, No. 2 (May, 1967), pp. 166-184 (article consists of 19 pages)

David Toro and the Establishment of "Military Socialism" in Bolivia, Herbert S. Klein, The Hispanic American Historical Review, Vol. 45, No. 1 (Feb., 1965), pp. 25-52 (article consists of 28 pages)

mcentellas said...

The articles are fairly accessible. But you'll need access to JSTOR (which any university/college library does). Otherwise, at a public library, as them to help you look it up. Both articles appeared in the a journal (if memory serves) called "Hispanic American Historical Review."

GS said...

mcentellas, thanks.