President Bush went down to Brazil today and sure enough, the usual coterie of leftwing whiners were there to greet him, mouthing the usual pap.
Police clashed Thursday with students, environmentalists and left-leaning Brazilians protesting a visit by President Bush and his push for an ethanol energy alliance with Latin America's largest nation.The fun wasn't just contained to Brazil. They're already warming up in Colombia.
Riot police fired tear gas at protesters in Sao Paulo after more than 6,000 people held a largely peaceful march, sending hundreds of demonstrators fleeing and ducking into businesses to avoid the gas.
Clashes between police and anti-Bush protesters were also reported in Colombia, where Bush is scheduled to visit on Sunday as part of his five-nation tour to Latin America.No blood for ethanol!
Bush has spoken approvingly of Brazil's ethanol program, which powers eight out of every 10 new Brazilian cars. The proposed accord is meant to help turn ethanol into an internationally traded commodity and to promote sugarcane-based ethanol production in Central America and the Caribbean.
In Sao Paulo, some carried stalks of sugarcane — used to make ethanol — and a banner reading: "For every liter of ethanol produced, 4 liters of fresh water are consumed, monoculture is destroying the nation's greatest asset."
And in the southern city of Porto Alegre, more than 500 people yelled "Get out, imperialist!" as they marched to a Citigroup Inc. bank branch and burned an effigy of Bush.
Fearing that Brazil may clear pristine jungle to increase sugarcane cultivation for ethanol, Greenpeace activists hung a huge banner warning against increased reliance on ethanol as an alternative fuel. They placed the banner on a monument to the 17th century Portuguese explorers who conquered Brazil's Indians in search of gold and gems.
"We know that Bush and the United States are known for exploiting weaker countries into deals that will only benefit themselves without worrying about the environment," said Mariana Schwarz, a 25-year-old publicist.
"Bush and the United States go to war to control oil reserves, and now Bush and his pals are trying to control the production of ethanol in Brazil. And that has to be stopped," said Suzanne Pereira dos Santos, an activist with Brazil's Landless Workers Movement.
Meanwhile, we also see how much good Bush's pandering to Mexico has done.
And in Mexico City, which Bush is scheduled to visit Tuesday, about two dozen demonstrators gathered in front of the U.S. Embassy chanting slogans against the U.S. project to construct border fences and Bush's visit.
"Why is he coming here? It makes no sense, it's unreasonable, after all he's done," said protest leader Roman Diaz Vazquez, a lawyer. "We don't like him. Why is he coming, after he ordered the construction of the border wall?"
Carmelo Ramriez Reyes showed up for the protest in a devil's mask, carrying a placard reading "My name is George Bush, killer of Mexicans."