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Green Colonialism: The New Face Of Environmental Hypocrisy

If you hated greenwashing, you'll be appalled by green colonialism.

PARIS — From renewable energy solutions to recycling innovations, everyone is busy touting their so-called "green" credentials. But as we've seen with the term "greenwashing," the vocabulary of the environmental movement can be turned around quite sharply on any would-be hypocrites. Among those accused lately of exploiting the banner of ecology (while actually causing it harm) comes another term: "green colonialism."

Around the world, echoing political and territorial colonialism of the past, there is a growing number of examples of countries and companies crossing borders to make the same mistakes that got us into this perilous situation in the first place: mismanagement of land, destruction of ecosystems in the name of "progress," and a general disrespect for the quality of life for indigenous communities.

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A Rumination On Excellence (Or Why Mediocrity Often Wins)

A Latin American consultant argues that excellence is an end unto itself, something that often gets lost in the pursuit of business


MONTEVIDEO — I have since long been obsessed with the idea of excellence. What is it really? Is it a choice or a destination? Is it something anyone can achieve? Is it the same to be excellent as to be the best? Is it possible to transform a mediocre organization into one of bonafide excellence?

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Uruguay President vs. Big Tobacco

MONTEVIDEO — While other world leaders used their slot at this week's United Nations General Assembly to argue over Syria or the global economy, Uruguayan President Tabaré Vázquez had smoke on his mind.

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After Legalizing Marijuana, Uruguay Now Ready To Save The Planet

Uruguay shows again why it is one of the world's most progressive countries, with the government's recent pledge to aim to use only clean energy in the future.

There is always some piece of surprising news from Uruguay. The South American continent's smallest state, with barely 3.2 million residents, is not just great at football but it's living standards are comparable to developed states. And with sensitive issues such as drugs, it has decided to stop fussing and opt for progressive policies like liberalizing marijuana.

We can add another, even more impressive accomplishment to the list. Uruguay is implementing a veritable energy revolution. The sun that shines between the blue and white on its flag is taking on new significance because the country is on the verge of obtaining all of its energy from renewable sources — and investing 3% of its GDP to this end. About 40% of this clean energy is already coming from wind, solar and biomass.

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Camilo Segura Alvarez

Uruguay, Big Pharma And The Global Marijuana Market

Foreign interests are eyeing Uruguay's recent legalization of cannabis use in its territory. Will big pharmaceutical firms be allowed to move in on this huge business opportunity?

After Uruguay's new law last year that legalized the consumption and production of marijuana, government laboratories and authorities from Canada, Chile and Israel contacted their Uruguayan counterparts about the possibility of purchasing cannabis for medicinal use.

Though the recent law permits the sale, research and consumption of cannabis, it does not yet stipulate any regulations for exportation or investment by the world's large pharmaceutical firms. Still, some expect the government of President José Múgica to eventually open a global market for marijuana, with the potential of turning Uruguay into a new center of biotechnology research around the effects of the drug.

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Uruguayan President Calls Kirchner "Old Bat" And Her Husband "Cross-Eyed"

EL OBSERVADOR (Uruguay), LA NACION (Argentina)


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Guillermo Pellegrino

Uruguay Debates Whether To Clean Dictonary Of Racist Expressions

MONTEVIDEO – Racism and racist expressions are often ingrained in society. In Uruguay, they are also written in the dictionary.

Last month, Vice-Minister of Culture and Education Oscar Gomez urged the Uruguayan Academy of Letters to remove racist and offensive expressions from the Dictionary of Uruguayan Spanish. It is part of a campaign launched on Jan. 22 called “Let’s Erase Racism from our Language,” sponsored by the Afro-Uruguayan Culture Institute.

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The Second Latin American Nation Is Set To Ok Gay Marriage

EL PAIS (Uruguay) CLARIN (Argentina)

MONTEVIDEO - The past year has been a momentous one for supporters of gay marriage. And 2013 looks like it may begin with at least one more country -- and the second ever in Latin America -- to legalize same-sex marriage.

Last week, the lower house of Uruguay’s legislature approved a bill legalizing same sex marriage, El Pais reports. The bill will now move to the Senate for approval and then to the desk of President Jose Mujica, who plans to sign the bill in the beginning of 2013, Clarin reports.

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Argentina's Currency Restrictions Squeeze Latin American Tourism

EL OBSERVADOR (Uruguay) CLARIN (Argentina)


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Antonio Ladra

Is Uruguay's Push To Legalize Pot About To Go Up In Smoke?

MONTEVIDEO – Uruguayan President José “Pepe” Mujica placed his country in the global drug-policy spotlight when he presented a bill earlier this year seeking to decriminalize marijuana.

Many observers – including Nobel Prize winning novelist Mario Vargas Llosa of Peru – pointed to the move as an example of what countries can do to prevent themselves from becoming “narco-states.”

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Uruguay President Wants The State To Grow And Sell Pot


O GLOBO (Brazil), EL PAÍS (Uruguay)

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President, Amnesty Law Under Fire In Uruguay

Human rights violations committed during Uruguay’s 1970s and 1980s-era military regimes have come back to haunt the South American country, where the legislature’s recent failure to revoke a stubborn amnesty law has sparked a major political crisis.


Horacio Gelós Bonilla was with his uncle in the main square in the Uruguayan city of Maldonado in the early evening of Jan. 2, 1976 when two men emerged from a truck and arrested him. That was the last time his family saw the 32-year-old labor leader. Bonilla was reportedly taken to a local jail where witnesses later reported they heard his cries as he was being beaten, until he went silent.

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