Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas
 

Strike a New Partnership with Brazil

The U.S. and Brazil must expand their trade relationship. Although there are significant differences between the two countries, especially in socioeconomic development, the similarities are clear: our size and enterprising spirits bring us together. For example, Brazil’s advancements in the field of alternative energy and the technological innovation that emerges from the U.S.

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Protect the Lives and Rights Of Indigenous People

Congratulations on your victory. I offer you our traditional best wishes for a good heart, good mind and good thoughts as you assume your new responsibilities. I write to you as National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, the national organization representing First Nations in Canada. Canada is home to more than 800,000 First … Read more

 

Move Beyond the One-Policy-Fits-All-Model

The next president must abandon the current one-policy-fits-all approach to U.S. neighbors and recognize the region’s vast economic, political, cultural, and ideological diversity. His foreign policy toward Latin America, no less than toward the rest of the world, should focus on revamping the U.S. image as a country that respects the rule of law, promotes peace through multilateral institutions and champions international governance as the best way to solve global problems.

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Reform the Immigration System

“Mother of exiles. From her beacon-hand glows world-wide welcome…. Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Emma Lazarus’ famous poem is engraved on the pedestal on which the Statue of Liberty stands. The invitation implicit in those words is so compelling that every day someone dies in the desert near the U.S.-southern border, attempting to reach the United States.

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Recognize and Work with the New Central America

Mr. President-elect, please take a moment to recognize the vast changes in my region, Central America. Some of your compatriots already have, and they are surprised by what they have found. I recently enjoyed a cup of Salvadoranian coffee with a U.S. investor who regularly commutes between Manhattan and El Salvador, in less time than … Read more

 

Bridge the Digital Divide

For some time now, Latin American countries have been working diligently to reduce what has come to be known as the digital divide: the gap between the huge advances in information technology and those who do not have the access or the digital skills to use that technology. In the private sector, collaboration and mentoring have helped bridge the gap, and business continues to have the greatest potential for progress. Reinforcing a combined effort on the part of regional and U.S.

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Recognize that Cuba’s Future Is Inside Cuba

I write my humble recommendations to the new President-elect and to others who will read this essay as an activist who has spent more than 17 years of uninterrupted confinement in filthy jails simply for expressing my desire for change. The reforms that I have advocated are the same as those that were demanded in Central Europe in public squares and streets two decades ago. And it is with this experience that I urge you to remember that the hope for change in Cuba is still alive.

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Build Smart Borders

Mr. President, welcome to the overwhelming responsibility and the awesome opportunity of leading the world’s richest, most powerful nation at a time of global change and trial. I am offering you advice today from a Canadian perspective—a perspective that I fear you will have received from few of your advisers. In my lifetime, two dates … Read more

 

End the Credit Squeeze on Latin America’s Poor

Over the past two decades, democracy has taken hold in the vast majority of Latin American countries. Notwithstanding an anti-market backlash led by Venezuela, the region as a whole has benefited from stable economic policies and improved growth rates. Yet these gains remain imperiled by persistent poverty and income inequality. According to a May 2008 … Read more

 

Deal with the Left’s Resurgence

The landscape of Latin America has shifted in both political and economic terms in the last ten years. The Left, with its “one thousand faces,” has reappeared in a distorted and pernicious manner, without providing any solutions to the biggest problems in the region such as poverty, drug trafficking, contraband, and corruption, among others. In many of our countries, we have to start over again. The challenge awaiting the new president of the United States in developing new policies for the region will not be easy.

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Ignore the Has-Beens, Look to Brazil

What a paradox! Never has the Hispanic vote been more influential in a U.S. election than in 2008—and never has the U.S. had less regional influence than today. That said, 200 years of history and a rising regional power (Brazil) present you, Mr. President-elect, with a unique opportunity to build a new relationship of solidarity with the region on everything from energy, aid and commerce, to security and migration.

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Develop a New Hemispheric Vision

For many years most Latin American presidents favored maintaining close relations with the United States. The best university students coveted scholarships to attend graduate school in the U.S., and thousands of the more than 190 million poor in our region migrated to the U.S.—sometimes at great personal risk. But “the times, they are a-changin’.” Today, … Read more

 

Expand Trade—Even with Cuba

Congratulations, Mr. President-elect. Amidst the celebratory post-election fervor of the past few weeks I hope you have caught glimpses of the transcendent significance of your victory, and the powerful inspiration that it provides to the citizens of the U.S. and, indeed, the world. In fact, there can be little doubt that your ascension to the presidential office validates and illuminates many of the core tenets of your nation.

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