Opinion: Movers and Shakers, a Smidgen

Opinion: Movers and Shakers, a Smidgen

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”, terms upon which the Curmudgeon expounded last September. The latest entrant into the attention-grabbing headline […]

Opinion: The “Third Round”, a Smidgen

Opinion: The “Third Round”, a Smidgen

Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Friday the 13th, there were demonstrations across the country, supporting President Dilma, even though many of the demonstrators simultaneously protested actions by Dilma’s current government. Most of those who demonstrated were from Dilma’s part of the political spectrum — populist, leftist and socialist. For these demonstrators, […]

Opinion: “PEC da Bengala” or, the “Cane Mutiny”

Opinion: “PEC da Bengala” or, the “Cane Mutiny”

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 most Brazilian judicial appointments, in that the President is free to nominate whomever she wishes. […]

Opinion: Packing the Court, a Bovine Smidgen

Opinion: Packing the Court, a Bovine Smidgen

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 Lula appointed José Antonio Dias Toffoli to Brazil’s highest court. Toffoli had only one “qualification” […]

Opinion: Turf Wars, a Smidgen

Opinion: Turf Wars, a Smidgen

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 with the land that underpins and overlooks Rio de Janeiro. Although the battles in this […]

Opinion: The Curmudgeon on “Reputational Rescue”

Opinion: The Curmudgeon on “Reputational Rescue”

Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The title is a phrase used Thursday, March 5th, by Luis Carlos Adams, head of AGU, the equivalent to the Solicitor General’s Office in the U.S., when talking to Luciano Coutinho, the President of BNDES, Brazil’s development bank. “Reputational rescue” is a euphemism for “whitewash”. Adams […]

Opinion: Plano Real 3.0, a Smidgen

Opinion: Plano Real 3.0, a Smidgen

Opinion, by Michael Royster RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Actually, it’s 3.01, the number of Brazilian reais needed to purchase one US dollar at the close of the commercial exchange markets yesterday, March 5, 2015. That’s the highest it’s been since August 2004. 2004 wasn’t that bad, comparatively speaking. In October 2002, just before the […]

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