Dienstag, Juni 30, 2009

The First Serious Error...

The Obama Administration has made its first serious error of fact.

They've already made a number of errors of opinion, but this is the first case where they simply have the facts wrong, and are clearly siding on the wrong side of those who are right.

Here's a brief description of what has happened, which basically comes from here. If someone has a better source, I'd be happy to update this, or if there are any errors here, please correct: however, from what I've read, this is accurate.

The country of Honduras has a constitution. To change their constitution, to make amendments, you have to have a general assembly of the Honduras congress that is the only legally permitted organ to make constitutional changes.

The deposed President of Honduras is Manuel Zelaya.

* When the armed forces refused to distribute the ballots, Zelaya fired the chief of the armed forces, Gen. Romeo Vásquez, and the defense minister, the head of the army and the air force resigned in protest.
* Yesterday the Supreme Court ordered by a 5-0 vote that Vásquez be reinstated.
* Honduras's Supreme Electoral Tribunal ordered authorities to pick up all the ballots and electoral material, which were held by the country's air force.
* The country's Attorney General requested yesterday that Congress oust Zelaya.
* The courts have declared the referendum unlawful. Last Tuesday the Congress passed a law preventing the holding of referendums or plebiscites 180 days before or after general elections. Congress has also named a commission to investigate Zelaya.


An official statement of the Supreme Court of Justice explained that the Armed Forces acted under lawful grounds when detaining the President of the Republic, and by decommissioning the materials to be used on the illegal poll which aimed to bring forth Executive Power against a judicial order.

Other sources verified that the president of the Congress, Roberto Micheletti, will assume the presidency of the republic in a few hours.

Honduran president Manuel Zelaya was detained this morning by the military in compliance with an order of the courts of law.

The above is from linked site, emphasis in the original.

In other words, when faced with a president who was actively seeking to break Honduras law and suborn the constitution, the Honduran legislature ordered his arrest. Zelaya resigned (link here, only in Spanish). He now claims he did not.

The removal of Zelaya is fairly popular. See here and here, especially the comments. Zelaya was driving the country into the ground.

From the first link:

In the first 2 years of his term, he seemed to be trying to fulfill his promises, but then we see him starting to engage in relations with Venezuela's leftist president Hugo Chavez, which per se is not a bad thing, but he starts to support his ideologies.

This is where Mr. Zelaya stabbed the Honduran people in the back. He makes an unpredicted turn to the left, which the majority of the population is against, but nevertheless, he goes on with the integration of Honduras to the ALBA, Hugo Chavez's initiative, which has caused nothing but civil unrest on countries that have joined. This mostly motivated by promises of easy money by Chavez.

Zelaya starts also to take a populist stance, first approving a huge increase in government workers' wage, then approving a general increase to the minimum wage to levels where small and medium business were not able to cope with. He uses his "Citizen's power" initiative to promise the poor areas of Honduras a thousand and one benefits with the integration to the ALBA. This all seems good, but in the background, he is asphyxiating our country's air-thin budget with these initiatives, and forgoing such responsibilities such as the fight of crime, drug trafficking, diseases, the World's economical crisis, and many other social matters.This is Zelaya first crime.

With this strategy, Zelaya "purchased" the support of some in-country blocks, such as peasant and indigenous organizations.This all would have been good, until you see Zelaya's true intentions.

His purpose was of gathering support for his new project: to dispose of the current Constitution, over which he was sworn in, and create a new one, similar to ones crafted by Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, with which he would be allowed to be re-elected. This is Zelaya's second crime.

From the second link:

President Zelaya talks of a new, better kind of Democracy where the representatives in Congress will be chosen by social organizations, such as worker unions, peasant unions, teacher unions and other social organizations, in other words, a new version of Lenin's Proletarian Dictatorship. This model of the 60s, 70s and 80s has been tried and failed because it limits representation to a few. Yet he ironically claims that the other branches of the government and the "Oligarchies" are the ones who want to keep power in the hands of a few.

Thus, with the survey and fourth ballot, President Zelaya seeks to break the constitutional order, to defeat the constitution and change the rules of representation. That is why the majority of the Honduran people oppose this survey. That is why Congress opposes it. That is why the Supreme Court and the judicial system oppose it. That is why the Human Rights Commission, the Ombudsman, opposes it. That is why the churches oppose it. That is why the Honduran Bar Association opposes it. That is why the military oppose it. That is why we, the people oppose it.

Article 64 of our valid constitution protects itself from the passing of laws that contradict any other article in it, specially the seven non-amendable articles. There is also an article that states that no referendums or surveys can be held within 180 days before the general elections. Mel's survey would therefore involve going against each of these articles, and ultimately assault the constitution as a whole. Our legislative and judicial institutions are aware of this, declaring it an illegal action. Our armed forces have rejected the commands from the president, because they refuse to participate in an illegality, causing further discourse. The news channels and newspapers have encountered themselves with people who have been offered money in exchange for their vote, and a woman was even denied service at a public hospital because she refused to sign in favor of the ballot.

The judicial courts and Public Ministry (attorney general's office) ordered all the material to be removed and stored in the Air Force base, at which point, Zelaya proceeded to march there with a group of about 2,000 followers suspected of being bought, brought down the gates, and retrieved the boxes of material which were then taken to the presidential palace.


Yes, Zelaya was democratically elected, but he also betrayed the Honduras's people vote by trying to take the country to a path that we do not chose (ALBA and Chavez extreme socialism), forgetting important country affairs for promoting his Chavist agenda, and using the country's poor for this purpose. If he promotes democracy through the voice of the people, why didn't he asked us if we wanted to join the ALBA?

Finally, I want to remind everyone that this was not a military coup, this was the arrest and destitution of a criminal president, with the help of the military. Proof that it is not a coup, is that as of this moment we already have the Constitutional State of Right re-established, with a new president, and new cabinet. Let us Hondurans be, we have already defenestrated what was causing us such stress, division and unrest, and we will reunite ourselves, to again perform our right of suffrage in 5 months.

So, what does President Obama do?

He sides with Castro and Chavez, who were grooming Zelaya to take power in Honduras as Chavez had in Venezuala, by suborning the constitution and perverting the process.

According to this:

"We believe that the coup was not legal and that President Zelaya remains the president of Honduras, the democratically elected president there," Obama told reporters after an Oval Office meeting with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe.


"It would be a terrible precedent if we start moving backwards into the era in which we are seeing military coups as a means of political transition, rather than democratic elections," Obama said, noting the region's progress in establishing democratic traditions in the past 20 years.

Despite Obama's comments, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the administration was not formally designating the ouster as a military coup for now, a step that would force a cut-off of most U.S. aid to Honduras.

Under U.S. law, no aid -- other than for the promotion of democracy -- may be provided to a country whose elected head of government has been toppled in a military coup.

"We do think that this has evolved into a coup," Clinton told reporters, adding the administration was withholding that determination for now.

We see here a common thread, one that ties in with the Obama conceit "I won" and how his Administration, Pelosi and Reid are turning the Congress into a rubber-stamp parliament, who won't even slow down to read the laws they are passing.

The only thing that counts is "democracy", the mob rule, getting elected. The Rule of Law?

Only when it's convenient.

In developing countries, the Rule of Law is the most important step to development at all. No one will work if the fruits of their labors are simply taken by despots; they'll work to survive, but no one will build businesses and create jobs so that they can be turned over to politically correct cronies, who usually then plunder the company and lets it then fail, blaming the original owners.

This is the first truly egregious error of the Obama Administration, an actual error of fact.

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