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Fri Apr 13, 2012, 05:42 PM

D.C. seems stuck in another age – a Latin Am. country serving as a model is beyond its comprehension


Everyone wants to talk to Brazil's President Rousseff, except Obama
Washington seems stuck in another age – a Latin American country serving as a model is beyond its comprehension

Jason Farago
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 11 April 2012


The second most powerful person in the western hemisphere arrived in Washington on Monday. But the most powerful one spent most of the day rolling Easter eggs on the South Lawn.

Dilma Rousseff, the Brazilian president, leads an economy larger than Britain's, commands an ocean's worth of oil, and enjoys a 77% approval rating her American counterpart can only fantasise about. Everybody but Barack Obama wanted to see her this week. She arrived to the accompaniment of a half-dozen op-eds from professors and thinktank bosses, all of them extolling her economic stewardship and begging DC to take her seriously. The presidents of Harvard and MIT (both women, for what it's worth) invited her up to Boston. Even the US chamber of commerce put out the bunting – surely the first time the big bad business group has been so excited to meet a former Marxist guerrilla. Only Obama shrugged.

The two presidents had a short meeting and a shorter press bilateral, during which they never looked each other in the eye. About the only boost to bilateral ties that came out of their confab was a deal to promote the importation of cachaηa – wonderful news for caipirinha drinkers, sure, but not exactly an agreement of world-historical importance. Not only did the US president not bother with the trappings of a state visit; he barely gave Dilma two hours. "Obama could have taken her to dinner," one Brazilian official groused. "Or to the Kennedy Center."

The leaders of India and China get pomp and circumstance when they come to town. Vladimir Putin is a big enough operator that Sarah Palin blessedly keeps watch on his nation from her house. But Brazil is the Brics country that gets no respect, even in 2012. We still speak of it as a basket case, which would be patronising even if our own country weren't in the grips of a rejectionist Congress and a politically motivated supreme court. Yet of all the big emerging economies – a ridiculous phrase now that they have already emerged, while our own and Europe's seem to be receding into nothingness – Brazil is the one that poses the least significant geopolitical threat and offers the most advantages, as all those salivating CEOs already know. .................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2012/apr/11/brazil-president-rousseff-obama-washington



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Reply D.C. seems stuck in another age – a Latin Am. country serving as a model is beyond its comprehension (Original post)
marmar Apr 2012 OP
boston bean Apr 2012 #1
saras Apr 2012 #2
MannyGoldstein Apr 2012 #3

Response to marmar (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:37 PM

1. He did seem disengaged. Maybe he had something else on his mind... nt

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:27 PM

2. Brazil isn't fascist enough to get along with corporate America.

 

I don't think the multinationals are ever going to forgive whoever they blame for losing exclusive control of South America. And whenever it comes down to multinationals versus foreign citizens, Obama is always on the same side, the side that pays him.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 08:45 AM

3. "Make No Mistake: Fox News would disapprove"

'Nuff said.

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