Laura Carlsen is director of the Americas Policy Program (www.americaspolicy.org) in Mexico City, where she has been an analyst and writer for two decades. She is also a Foreign Policy In Focus columnist. Her articles are frequently republished on this site and can be accessed below, including a link to original source.
The recent successful elections in Bolivia and Venezuela are being heralded as an important step forward for Latin America, signalling the increasing decline of US influence and a further triumph in the region for economic independence, social equality and redistributive policies.Obama and NAFTA
Some Obama-watchers claim he's waffling on his promise to renegotiate NAFTA, but this is a historic opportunity to change course in crisis, and should no longer be a question of 'will he or won't he', writes Laura Carlsen.North America Doesn't Exist
The problem with the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is that trade isn't really 'free', and North America - at least as portrayed in the summits - doesn't actually exist, writes Laura Carlsen.Shattering the Myths of Globalization: No Rest for the Working Poor
In Mexico City, the working poor are forced to confront the false promises of globalization every day - as a race to the bottom that sees only decreases in wages despite the soaring costs of food.Why Bolivia Matters
Bolivia’s National Palace is a classic colonial building that sits on the pigeon-filled Plaza Murillo in downtown La Paz. It’s more often called the “Palacio Quemado” or “Burned Palace” because it’s been set on fire repeatedly by dissidents of one stripe or another over the centuries since Bolivia gained its fragile independence. Today, painted a cheery yellow, it stands as reminder of a conflictive past and a fresh future.A Strange Homecoming: Reflections on the First US Social Forum
Attending the U.S. Social Forum held in Atlanta, Georgia June 27-July 1 was an adventure. The first social forum for the United States, it was also one of the first in a series of regional events aimed at decentralizing the mega- World Social Forum that started in Porto Alegre, Brazil.NAFTA: Kicked Up a Notch
The North American Free Trade Agreement is the world’s most advanced example of the U.S.-led free trade model. It’s not just about economics any more. The expansion of NAFTA into the Security and Prosperity Partnership reveals the road ahead for other nations entering into free trade agreements. It is not a road most nations -- or the U.S. public -- would take if they knew where it led.Migrants: Globalizationís Junk Mail?
The titles that Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) attaches to its operations reveal a great deal about the logic behind current U.S. immigration policy, writes Laura Carlsen.Latin Americaís Pink Tide?
The South American Summit of Nations and the Social Forum for the Integration of Peoples took place last week, stirring visions of continental unity. Both events—one of government leaders and one of civil society—showed there are new winds of change on the continent.U.S. Immigration Policy Fosters Bad Neighbor Relations
Guillermo Martinez was only 20 years old when he was shot in the back at close range by an agent of the U.S. Border Patrol in the state of California on December 30, 2005.
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