Rise of the Banana-less Republics

     Latin America, both the Spanish speaking countries and Brazil, are stereotypically known for being “banana republics” run by dictators.  Indeed, Venezuela and Cuba seem to personify this.  However, there is an increasing trend of would-be tyrants and corrupt “El Presidente” types being legally removed from office in a triumph of democracy.

     In Honduras, Manuel Zelaya was automatically removed by the wording of the Honduran Constitution, and the army was ordered by the civilian authorities (in this case the Honduran Supreme Court) to remove Zelaya—a move confirmed and validated by the Honduran Congress, including most of Zelaya’s own fellow party members.

     Then, Fernando Lugo was impeached by the Paraguayan Camber of Deputies by vote of 76-1, and removed by the Senate by a vote of 39 to 4, and later endorsed by the Supreme Court of Paraguay.

     In both cases the Presidents were Left-leaning and both claimed it was an illegal coup against them, despite their removal being in accordance with the law.

     Now Brazil can join this illustrious group: Dilma Rousseff was convicted by the Brazilian Senate by a vote of 61-20 and removed from office.  As with Paraguy and Honduras, claims of a “coup d’etat” were claimed despite the ouster being done in accordance with the Brazilian Constitution and by the legitimate civilian authorities exercising their Constitutional powers.

     In contrast, the Congress of the United States seems to shrug as Obama increasingly acts dictatorially.

     A little mood music:

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2 Responses to Rise of the Banana-less Republics

  1. avatar Brian Edminster says:

    Aha! So *that’s* the problem: We have too many bananas for Congress to use the tools of our Constitution to rein in our ever increasingly dictatorial POTUS!

    All bad jokes aside – I think the problem is that too few of our congress-critters have any problem with how things are progressing.

    That is – as long as they can stay in power, it’s all going according to plan…
    ^– perhaps an oversimplification, but not by much…

  2. avatar gospace says:

    A note on Manuel Zelaya’s removal from office. The current administration opposed it. And threatened Honduras with retaliation for removing him from office.

    The removal wasn’t quite in accordance with the Honduran constitution. He should have been arrested and tried. Instead he was escorted away from Honduras and exiled. But the removal from office was automatic by the Honduran constitution. Wikipedia refers to his ouster as a coup. It was not. It was called for by their Constitution.

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