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Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - “Orçamento impositivo” is the sesquipedalian rendering in Portuguese of “pork barrel” —American for adding provisions to legislation that forces the government to spend money on something it doesn’t want to....
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - Often overlooked in the frenzy over corruption is the number of official government entities whose purpose is to see whether state-owned companies and federal bureaucracies are minding their P's and Q's....
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The Curmudgeon will today focus on Brazilian criminal law. “Boring!” you say, but you are wrong. This disquisition focuses on a proposed Constitutional Amendment (#171) that would lower the age of...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The first “king” is Roberto Carlos, a star of Brazilian music for at least fifty years, long known as “o Rei”. Some years ago, an unauthorized biography of “the King” was...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – This week or next, the Federal Senate will begin hearings to decide whether or not to confirm the appointment to the Brazilian Supreme Court (STF) of one Luiz Edson Fachin, replacing...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - One of the collateral effects of the Lava Jato investigation and the Petrolão scandal is that it has introduced arcane technical terms into our quotidian lives. Consider “delação premiada” and “ilação”,...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - In early 1999, the Curmudgeon watched, aghast, as the dollar went from R$1.20 to R$2.10 in less than a week; in late 2002, the Curmudgeon watched, astonished, as the dollar went...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The Curmudgeon will today focus on two closely related topics: (1) how Justices of the Brazilian Supreme Court (STF) are appointed; and (2) how they retire. The appointment process differs from...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Traditionally, the Brazilian Supreme Court (STF) was largely exempt from political machinations. Appointments were made based on professional and ethical qualifications. That tradition died a horrible death in 2009 when President...
Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - The title is a colloquial term for a "bitter struggle for territory, power, control, or rights." Today’s Smidgen is about real turf, i.e. real estate: more specifically, what is being done...
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