Truthout contributor Michael Meurer talks about the release of 2,000 photographs of the US torture of prisoners and the ways in which Uruguay has drawn neoliberal wrath for thwarting supply-side economics and corporate governance.
With the release of the US Senate Select Committee report on the CIA’s detention and interrogation program, Truthout contributor Michael Meurer puts the spotlight on the still unreleased photographs evidencing torture of prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan. Meurer, in his Truthout piece and in this interview, insists that the time is now to release these photos with the goal of getting as complete a picture of what the US government was thinking and doing during this period so we don’t repeat these policies in the future.
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In the second half of the interview, the discussion focuses on the country of Uruguay to highlight the ways in which the government is coming under economic attack by neoliberal (or supply-side) international bankers for deviating from austerity programs. Uruguay has also become a lightning rod for the global financial elite because the country is challenging the legitimacy of international trade tribunals that lie at the heart of the proposed TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) and TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) trade agreements. Meurer’s Uruguay article also highlights the country’s aggressive anti-smoking campaign and how Uruguay has to defend itself in a lawsuit brought by Philip Morris for the images and labels that are on packs of cigarettes. This lawsuit is not being heard in Uruguay’s domestic court system. Rather, the country has to defend itself in Washington DC at an international trade tribunal funded by the World Bank – a legal change that augurs ill for state sovereignty in the future. In the 1990s, George H.W. Bush had a slogan for this kind of supply-side corporate governance. He called it “a new world order” and what’s happening in Uruguay exemplifies the shape and form of that order and the disintegration of the social safety net in many countries affected by policies designed to protect global financial and corporate interests – not the human citizens of any state.