Commentary on Latin America. Mostly about Mexico - but not always. Designed to encourage readers to learn about the apparently "secret history" of 500 million people spread across two continents - but not always. You can always count on a little snark.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Brazil - Not Even the PT Can Stop Nature
Associated Press is reporting that 200 have been killed and 11,000 displaced in a mudslide in Rio. A growing middle class and urban renewal projects under President Da Silva have done much for Brazil, but you can't wipe out the desperate poverty of Rio's poorly planned hill side slums over night. In this case we are looking at the collapse of buildings built on a land fill that had not been used for more than 20 years. Rio currently employs several thousand workers that travel around the city working to counter the possibility of slides - but how much can you really do for a spontaneous slum built on a landfill with no initial support or planning combined with record rain falls? On the bright side - if we can eve dare to use the phrase - perhaps some improvement in infrastructure has guaranteed that this disaster was not worse considering the region has endured over 80 slides in the last few days.
Jason Dormady is currently an associate professor of history at Central Washington University where he teaches courses on Mexico, general Latin American topics, world history, and religion in Latin America. He is also a member of the CWU Latin@ and Latin American Studies program faculty. You can read about my research interests at Academia.
The statements on this page do not reflect the views of Central Washington University or the Latin@ and Latin American Studies program.