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Presidents and constitutions in Latin America July 10, 2009

Posted by Sverre in : Political Theory, World politics , add a comment

Now that more information is available, it seems clear that calling the situation in Honduras a coup. Using the military to drive the president out and sending him into exile is hardly part of a legitimate judicial process. Steven Taylor had some good comments about that today. For that matter i recommend all his comments on the situation in Honduras.

Even though the rest of the government obviously overstepped their bounds in ousting Zelaya in the manner they did, it still remains that the entire government wanted him gone, including his own party. Now, I don’t know much about politics in Honduras, but it all reeks of something. And looking at Latin American politics from the side, it does seem to reek of the same thing that has happened in several other countries in the region lately: That the executive branch gets in a position to keep changing the constitution and election laws to counteract the checks and balances of government, such as term limits. (more…)

Perak, Malaysia – a constitutional monarchy gone haywire February 7, 2009

Posted by Sverre in : Malaysia , add a comment

perakAn interesting political conflict is taking place in the state of Perak in Malaysia these days. Things have turned into complete chaos with a government that won’t resign, a monarch that won’t dissolve the parliament and two political alliances trying to steal each other’s representatives with all means necessary. All claim to have the constitution on their side and accuse the others of acting unconstitutionally.

After the 2008 elections, the state parliament is divided almost 50-50 between the opposition alliance PKR and the government alliance BN. Until now, the state had a PKR government who ruled with a 3-member advantage in the parliament. So far pretty straightforward, but then it becomes complicated… (more…)