With Echoes of the ’30s, Trump Resurrects a Hard-Line Vision of ‘America First’

WASHINGTON — America, and the world, just found out what “America First” means.

President Trump could have used his inaugural address to define one of the touchstone phrases of his campaign in the most inclusive way, arguing, as did many of his predecessors, that as the world’s greatest superpower rises, its partners will also prosper.

Instead, he chose a dark, hard-line alternative, one that appeared to herald the end of a 70-year American experiment to shape a world that would be eager to follow its lead. In Mr. Trump’s vision, America’s new strategy is to win every transaction and confrontation. Gone are the days, he said, when America extended its defensive umbrella without compensation, or spent billions to try to lift the fortune of foreign nations, with no easy-to-measure strategic benefits for the United States.

“From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first,” he said, in a line that resonated around the world as soon as he uttered it from the steps of the Capitol. “We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our products, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.”

The United States, he said, will no longer subsidize “the armies of other countries while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military.”

While all American presidents pledge to defend America’s interests first — that is the core of the presidential oath — presidents of both parties since the end of World War II have wrapped that effort in an expansion of the liberal democratic order. Until today, American policy has been a complete rejection of the America First rallying cry that the famed flier Charles Lindbergh championed when, in the late 1930s, he became one of the most prominent voices to keep the United States out of Europe’s wars, even if it meant abandoning the country’s closest allies.

Mr. Trump has rejected comparisons with the earlier movement, with its taint of Nazism and anti-Semitism.

After World War II, the United States buried the Lindbergh vision of America First. The United Nations was born in San Francisco and raised on the East River of Manhattan, an ambitious, if still unfulfilled, experiment in shaping a liberal order. Lifting the vanquished nations of World War II into democratic allies was the idea behind the Marshall Plan, the creation of the World Bank and institutions to spread American aid, technology and expertise around the world. And NATO was created to instill a commitment to common defense, though Mr. Trump has accurately observed that nearly seven decades later, many of its member nations do not pull their weight.

Mr. Trump’s defiant address made abundantly clear that his threat to pull out of those institutions, if they continue to take advantage of the United States’ willingness to subsidize them, could soon be translated into policy. All those decades of generosity, he said, punching the air for emphasis, had turned America into a loser.

“We’ve made other countries rich,” he said, “while the wealth, strength and confidence of our country has disappeared over the horizon.” The American middle class has suffered the most, he said, finding its slice of the American dream “redistributed across the entire world.”

To those who helped build that global order, Mr. Trump’s vow was at best shortsighted. “Truman and Acheson, and everyone who followed, based our policy on a ‘world-first,’ not an ‘America-first,’ basis,” said Richard N. Haass, whose new book, “A World in Disarray,” argues that a more granular, short-term view of American interests will ultimately fail.

“A narrow America First posture will prompt other countries to pursue an equally narrow, independent foreign policy,” he said after Mr. Trump’s speech, “which will diminish U.S. influence and detract from global prosperity.”

To Mr. Trump and his supporters, it is just that view that put America on the slippery slope to obsolescence. As a builder of buildings, Mr. Trump’s return on investment has been easily measurable. So it is unsurprising that he would grade America’s performance on a scorecard in which he totals up wins and losses.

Curiously, among the skeptics are his own appointees. His nominee for defense secretary, Gen. James N. Mattis, strongly defended the importance of NATO during his confirmation hearing. Both Rex W. Tillerson, the nominee for secretary of state, and Nikki R. Haley, the choice for ambassador to the United Nations, offered up paeans to the need for robust American alliances, though Mr. Tillerson periodically tacked back to concepts echoing Mr. Trump’s.

And there is a question about whether the exact meaning of America First will continue to evolve in Mr. Trump’s mind.

He first talked about it in a March interview with The New York Times, when asked whether that phrase was a good summation of his foreign-policy views.

He thought for a moment. Then he agreed with this reporter’s summation of Mr. Trump’s message that the world had been “freeloading off of us for many years” and that he fundamentally mistrusted many foreigners, both adversaries and some allies.

“Correct,” he responded. Then he added, in his staccato style: “Not isolationist. I’m not isolationist, but I am ‘America First.’ So I like the expression.” He soon began using it at almost every rally.

In another interview with The Times, on the eve of the Republican National Convention, he offered a refinement. He said he did not mean for the slogan to be taken the way Lindbergh meant it. “It was used as a brand-new, very modern term,” he said. “Meaning we are going to take care of this country first before we worry about everybody else in the world.”

As Walter Russell Mead, a professor at Bard College and a scholar at the conservative Hudson Institute, put it the other day, “The fact that he doesn’t have a grounding in the prior use of the term is liberating.”

“If you said to the average American voter, ‘Do you think it’s the job of the president to put America first,’ they say, ‘Yes, that’s the job.’”

But Mr. Mead said that formulation disregarded the reality that “sometimes to achieve American interests, you have to work cooperatively with other countries.” And any such acknowledgment was missing from Mr. Trump’s speech on Friday.

Mr. Trump cast America’s new role in the world as one of an aggrieved superpower, not a power intent on changing the globe. There was no condemnation of authoritarianism or fascism, no clarion call to defend human rights around the world — one of the commitments that John F. Kennedy made in his famed address, delivered 56 years ago to the day, to protect human rights “at home and around the world.”

That was, of course, the prelude to Kennedy’s most famous line: that America would “bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.”

But the America that elected Mr. Trump had concluded that it was no longer willing to bear that burden — or even to make the spread of democracy the mission of the nation, as George W. Bush, who was sitting behind Mr. Trump, vowed 12 years ago. Mr. Trump views American democracy as a fine import for those who like it.

“We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone,” he said, “but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.”

At the inauguration, millennial women share why they believe Donald Trump will make America great again

While many young women are traveling to the capital this weekend to participate in Saturday’s Women’s March, there are also those in town to celebrate the inauguration of President Donald Trump.

I spoke to young women at Trump’s inauguration about why they believe Trump will fulfill his promise to “Make America Great Again,” and what that means in their lives.

Brooke Cusack

Brooke Cusack Credit: Marianna Brady

Brooke Cusack, 22, Anchorage, Alaska

“I love Trump. He’s going to do a lot of great things, he’s a businessman. He’s not exactly what you might call a politician and that’s what the country needs right now. I’m really excited to see what the future has in store.”

“He’s going to do a lot of different things that we’ve needed in the last eight years. The country has been really divided for the past eight years. I think he’s going to unite us. I want ISIS to end and I just want everyone to be happy.”

Gillian Fahu

Gillian Fahy. Credit: Marianna Brady

Gillian Fahy, 23, Long Valley, New Jersey

“I voted for Barack Obama in 2012, but I supported Trump this time, mostly because I didn’t want Hillary Clinton to be the first woman president. I think she’s disgraceful and has done so many criminal things. I couldn’t see her as the first woman president.”

“I also feel there are a lot of issues with safety, and I think that Trump is going to be a stronger force against ISIS. I have a lot of family in the military and my dad is a police officer. I felt there was no respect on the Democratic side for military veterans, police officers and service men. Trump is a huge supporter of these people, and his support of all people will make America great again.”

Sarah Lynch

Sarah Lynch. Credit: Marianna Brady

Sarah Lynch, 21, Long Island, New York

“I like to consider myself a Republican for certain beliefs. I’m pro-life, being a Catholic.”

“I actually didn’t vote for him because I don’t support the person he is, but I like what he stands for and I think he will make America great again. He has put smart people in his cabinet that will lead him to make good decisions. I believe that through God’s will he will make decisions for the good of humanity.”

Tyler Rowson

Tyler Rowson. Credit: Marianna Brady

Tyler Rowson, 31, Atlanta, Georgia

“I think Trump will be a great president because he is a businessman and prioritizes making America strong again. He will be a great president for women, and I believe he supports women 100 percent. Just look at the group of powerful women behind him. I mean, his daughter Ivanka is incredible.”

“Trump was the only presidential candidate who has ever had a successful female campaign manager. Yes, there are those comments that he’s made that offended me and everyone else, but I think he overall is a great man and cares for women deeply.”

Destinie Beach

Destinie Beach. Credit: Marianna Brady

Destinie Beach, 21, Winchester, Virginia

“I think if Trump succeeds at making America great again we’ll have more jobs and less people. He says he is going to get rid of the illegal immigrants. They honestly take over all the jobs, pay no taxes and are allowed to live with 20 people in a house at one time. That’s not right and it needs to change. Trump will change it.”

Avalon Warren

Avalon Warren. Credit: Marianna Brady

Avalon Warren, 17, Dallas, North Carolina

“I believe in conservative values. Trump is a businessman and will treat America like a successful business. He will do good things for our country.”

“I think making America great again means unifying our country and coming together as one. There has been a lot of division because of Barack Obama — he kind of stirred things up. Trump understands the people and believes we have the right to protest. He knows we have the right to free speech and we have the right to believe what we want.”

Stavroula Horiates

Stravroula Horiates. Credit: Marianna Brady

Stavroula Horiates, 19, Cherry Hill, New Jersey

“The most important thing he can do to make America great again is to strengthen our border security. I’m Greek, and I know that bad things happen when you open your borders. Having stronger borders makes a country successful. That is something America needs to implement in order to make us great again.”

In: pri

Defending Western Values: Time for an International Front Against Trump

With the inauguration of Donald Trump as U.S. president, America is set to move into a more isolationist and more self-interested direction. The rest of the West must now stand up to defend our values.

A Commentary by Ullrich Fichtner

WARREN, MI - JANUARY 15: A man in a mask resembling President-elect Donald Trump walks outside the barricades during the "Our First Stand: Save Health Care" rally with Sen. Bernie Sanders, members of the Michigan congressional delegation and local elected officials at Macomb Community College on January 15, 2017 in Warren, Michigan. The event is one of more than 40 "Our First Stand: Save Health Care" rallies taking place around the country on January 15th. (Photo by Rachel Woolf/Getty Images)

WARREN, MI – JANUARY 15: A man in a mask resembling President-elect Donald Trump walks outside the barricades during the “Our First Stand: Save Health Care” rally with Sen. Bernie Sanders, members of the Michigan congressional delegation and local elected officials at Macomb Community College on January 15, 2017 in Warren, Michigan. The event is one of more than 40 “Our First Stand: Save Health Care” rallies taking place around the country on January 15th. (Photo by Rachel Woolf/Getty Images)

Our current times have all of the elements of a good television series, but they are not the kinds of things you want to see in real life. Behind every corner there’s a juicy surprise, a sudden change, a shock.

China’s president is now apparently the foremost proponent of free trade, who would have thought. The British prime minister is eschewing compromise in Brexit negotiations in favor of a full break. In France, the right-wing populists are dangerously close to power and same is true in the Netherlands. In Germany? Who knows? And Trump? He crowns everything, with a fat “T” embossed in extra-thick gold. NATO? “Obsolete.” Merkel and Putin? Six of one, half-dozen of the other. BMW? Can start saving for punitive tariffs. The Iran agreement? A scrap of paper. Trump talks like a caricature of a used-car salesman who sees the world as a marketplace for Donald’s great deals.

We need to prepare ourselves for the following: From now on, the most powerful person on the planet, along with his entourage made up primarily of billionaires like himself, will be regularly stomping on that which the international community has spent decades negotiating with effort and care. Who thinks, for example, that Trump’s troupe will feel bound to the Paris Climate Agreement for the reduction of greenhouse gases? That anybody in the White House will still care for the protection of animals, oceans or forests? That Trump could have any priority other than maximizing his own profits? Does anyone think he will support culture? Strengthen women’s rights? Show consideration for minorities? That he would be willing to think about the limits of capitalism? Of course he won’t.

Once it has pushed Islamic State further into retreat, the U.S. will withdraw as far as possible from its role as the world’s protective power. There have been similar phases in American history, periods of isolation and self-interest, and we are likely headed for another. America has always been the standard bearer for Western values, even if it hasn’t always managed to abide by them itself, but now the country will send those values into hibernation. From now on, there is a risk that active global policy might primarily consist of Trump, in the middle of lonely nights, inciting diplomatic crises on Twitter — insulting the Chinese, provoking India and denigrating Europeans.

It’s Time to Defend Our Principles

This won’t be fun. It reflects a new American desire for the survival of the fittest — in a world where the U.S. is still the strongest. Trump’s government won’t strive for global compromise, opting instead to try to get the most it can out of negotiations with individual nations. This president will do everything he can to weaken international organizations like the UN, the EU or the G-20 in order to make space for bilateral deals — just like his counterpart in the Kremlin. Maybe this will allow him to achieve a small American economic miracle, but a great many will pay the price: more global inequality, unchecked climate change and, in his own country, an even more jittery society with marginalized minorities.

The depth of the ultimate tragedy will depend on how quickly the opposition forms. Even the power of a U.S. president is not unlimited. He isn’t an absolute ruler, answerable to no one. Trump will be faced with the strength of civil society, the intelligence of his opponents, the courage of American citizens. This president cannot allow himself even the smallest litigable mistake for fear of being chased out of office.

Until then, the rest of the world needs to get to work to block American machinations against international standards, to ward off unfair American economic greed and to protect global agreements. What’s needed is a front against Trump.

The UN will need to show that it can be a countervailing power in the civil sphere and an advocate for its especially vulnerable members. The European Union should see Trump as a new justification for its existence and make the best of it. It’s very possible that previously unthinkable constellations might emerge — that Europe and China, for example, could act in concert on some issues. Impossible? That’s what we thought. But in the now-dawning Trump world, it’s not about believing or about hoping. We have no choice but to forcefully defend our interests and our principles.

In: spiegel 

Con Trump comienza una era de incertidumbre e improvisación entre Estados Unidos y América Latina

WASHINGTON — A pocas horas de que Donald Trump inicie su gestión como presidente número 45 de Estados Unidos, y a pesar del protagonismo que tuvo México durante su campaña, la volatilidad y la inexperiencia política del nuevo mandatario han llevado las expectativas de América Latina al mismo nivel que las del mundo entero: nadie sabe muy bien qué esperar de Trump ni qué resultará del choque entre sus pretensiones y la realidad.

Analistas y expertos consultados por The New York Times en Español coinciden al menos en un punto: es probable que nada cambie profundamente para la región en esta nueva etapa, pero el tono y la perspectiva de la relación entre América Latina y Estados Unidos no estarán marcados por las oportunidades, sino por las amenazas y la improvisación. Una particularidad que tendrá efectos concretos en países como México, uno de sus principales socios comerciales, donde cada rueda de prensa de Trump y hasta sus tuits han impactado en los mercados y han generado una caída histórica del peso mexicano frente al dólar.

Más allá de las múltiples promesas que el magnate de bienes raíces hizo en su campaña, el analista venezolano Moisés Naim sostiene que Trump se topará rápidamente con “el síndrome Guantánamo”, refiriéndose a que Obama luchó durante ocho años para cerrar la prisión en Cuba sin lograrlo: “Va a descubrir que cosas que a él le parecen obvias o que prometió en campaña no son posibles de hacer”.

Ricardo Ernst, profesor en la McDonough School of Business en Georgetown University, usa otra expresión para describir la misma expectativa: este presidente, dice, “podría ser caracterizado como un perro que ladra mucho pero que no necesariamente muerde”.

Aunque existe una preocupación compartida por la agresividad y la efervescencia del nuevo presidente, en términos generales Naim espera “más de lo mismo” de esta etapa, “pues la característica de la política de los presidentes y la Casa Blanca, de Washington en general hacia América Latina, es una de desdén amistoso”.

La región, dice, no compite ni siquiera como amenaza: “No tiene terroristas suicidas ni bombas atómicas, no tiene conflictos armados entre países, sus problemas no se irradian al resto del mundo como China, Europa, Irán. No logra calificar con sus problemas en la lista de los top ten”, y solo figura con asuntos de inmigración y drogas.

El gabinete designado por Trump, de hecho, será el primero desde la administración de Ronald Reagan en no incluir un solo latino entre sus miembros.

Una relación transaccional

Si América Latina no ha sido históricamente una región prioritaria para Estados Unidos, Trump parece haber descubierto los beneficios proselitistas de vapulear a los latinos sin tener que pagar un alto costo político: inició su campaña calificando a los mexicanos como “violadores y criminales”, dijo que iba deportar a más de tres millones de inmigrantes, atacó al TLCAN como “uno de los peores acuerdos probablemente firmados en cualquier lugar”, prometió construir un muro y hacer que México pague por él y aseguró que el primer día de su presidencia se saldría del Acuerdo Transpacífico de Cooperación Económica.

Activistas latinos protestan en contra del muro que prometió construir Donald Trump frente a la Convención Republicana en julio de 2016. CreditWhitney Curtis para The New York Times

Para Peter Hakim, presidente emérito y senior fellow de The Dialogue, será interesante ver si Trump deja de usar a México como parte de su retórica teatral y accede a sentarse a conversar seriamente sobre los temas importantes: “Si me hubieran preguntado hace una semana, diría que sí. Pero últimamente creo que va a mantener el teatro y las declaraciones explosivas, porque le han dado gran resultado”.

Un rasgo problemático de la relación entre Trump y América Latina es el aumento de la desconfianza, dice Eric Farnsworth, vicepresidente de Americas Society/Council of the Americas. Después de años de una relación complicada, Estados Unidos y México habían llegado a un entendimiento sano basado en la confianza y el buen desempeño como socios comerciales.

Tal como ha demostrado la caída del peso mexicano, que ha sufrido una devaluación de alrededor de un 40 por ciento desde que comenzó la campaña hasta hoy, “es un riesgo perder la confianza”, sostiene Farnsworth, quien cree que Colombia, otro país que ha sido buen socio de Estados Unidos en la región, podría empezar a tener dificultades según cómo se implementen los acuerdos de paz con las Farc.

Estados Unidos comercia con México un promedio de 500 mil millones de dólares anuales. El Tratado de Libre Comercio de América del Norte (TLCAN), firmado en 1994, se convirtió en uno de los blancos de Trump, quien durante la campaña lo responsabilizó por la pérdida de trabajos en Estados Unidos y lo calificó como una victoria para México.

Aunque esta perspectiva difiere mucho de lo que viven los mexicanos, Ernst cree que el mundo actual exige una revisión del tratado, porque las condiciones sobre las cuales se firmó son muy distintas: “Independientemente de la dimensión política, ha llegado el momento de revaluar el tratado, para ver cuáles son las condiciones, motivaciones y necesidades del 2017”.

Aun así, para los analistas parece claro que la relación entre Estados Unidos y la región no responderá al diseño de una política exterior específica, sino más bien a la resolución de problemas domésticos —como la migración y la protección de fronteras— y a un espíritu transaccional que Trump ha hecho explícito también para el resto del mundo, basado en la pregunta “qué podemos ganar nosotros en esta relación”, como lo describe Farnsworth.

Dispararse en las piernas

Eduardo Velosa, profesor de Relaciones Internacionales de la Universidad Javeriana de Bogotá, cree que la “reorganización” de América Latina y su nuevo “giro a la derecha” no representará incentivo alguno para el incremento o profundización de relaciones, al menos en el corto plazo. De hecho, algunos analistas ya han empezado a afirmar que este “vacío” que no aprovechará Estados Unidos sí será maximizado por China.

Ernst, por ejemplo, explica que si Trump insiste en salirse del Acuerdo Transpacífico de Cooperación Económica (TPP), un tratado que incluye a 12 países y representa el 33 por ciento del PIB mundial, el que saldrá favorecido será China.

“Es un tratado que busca, por diseño, dejar afuera a China para contrarrestar la fuerza económica del país asiático”, señala, y también es la puerta de entrada para un tratado de libre comercio entre Estados Unidos y Europa. “Si estropeas el TPP, te disparaste en las piernas”, dice Ernst.

Las piñatas con la imagen de Donald Trump se volvieron muy populares en los barrios latinos de Estados Unidos, como este en el Mission District en California. CreditJustin Sullivan/Getty Images

La amenaza de salirse del TPP no sería la única forma de dispararse en las piernas que implican las promesas de Trump. Para Juan Carlos Hartasanchez Frenk, director sénior de Albright Stonebridge, una firma de consultoría de negocios en Washington, “un México más débil afecta a los Estados Unidos”. Si se aumenta el impuesto a las remesas, dice, los que más sufrirán el impacto son las familias pobres de México, “que si no tienen ingresos van a tener que buscar otras oportunidades y va a aumentar la migración”.

Por ahora, lo único que parece haber ganado Trump con sus amenazas a los latinos son votos, y por eso Naim cree que como mandatario “tiene que hacer la escenografía de la pared” para cumplir con la promesa del muro: “No se puede dar el lujo de no hacerlo pero no será la gran muralla china por miles de kilómetros. Y tendrá que seguir haciendo todos los ruidos sobre tarifas, compañía por compañía para tratar de persuadirlos, pero todo serán actos simbólicos”.

En México, donde los actos simbólicos de Trump ya se han convertido en una realidad para el bolsillo de los ciudadanos —y sus amenazas se toman como una afrenta personal—, todo el mundo tiene una opinión sobre la era por comenzar.

El lunes por la tarde, en la zona sur de Ciudad de México, el barrendero Rubén Fernández, de 46 años, se preguntaba cómo “un hombre tan culto, porque sí ha tenido una vida de millonario desde que nació, puede ser tan racista”. Aunque, a fin de cuentas, Fernández cree que el nuevo presidente de Estados Unidos será funcional al gobierno mexicano: “Con todo el teatro de Trump, pues pueden culparlo. Van a subir todo y le van a echar la culpa. Yo creo que con el gasolinazo, los de México ya estamos pagando el muro”, comentó y siguió con su trabajo en el Parque de los Venados.

En: nytimes.com/es

Dimensions by Carl Sagan

Do you think you live in an organized world?, Chaos is not part of your mind?, Do you think that your existence have a purpose?, Do you believe in parallel universes? Are you a relativist? Let me tell you: Our existence is just a sweet or bitter coincidence in this universe, you are always living in an illusion among constant chaos and Carl Sagan suggests this in this awesome old video. Enjoy it!

Muere en un accidente de avión un juez clave del caso Petrobras

El hijo de  ha anunciado la muerte del magistrado responsable de las investigaciones en el Tribunal Supremo brasileño

Imagen: http://ep01.epimg.net/internacional/imagenes/2017/01/19/actualidad/1484853573_809612_1484855814_noticia_normal_recorte1.jpg

Imagen: http://ep01.epimg.net/internacional/imagenes/2017/01/19/actualidad/1484853573_809612_1484855814_noticia_normal_recorte1.jpg

El magistrado Teori Zavascki, de 68 años, que lideraba las investigaciones en el Tribunal Supremo brasileño del monumental caso Petrobras, ha muerto este jueves al caerse el avión en el que viajaba al mar de Paraty, en Rio de Janeiro. Ha sido su hijo, Francisco Prehn Zavascki, quien ha anunciado el fallecimiento en su propio Facebook, minutos después de confirmar también por la red social que su padre estaba en el vehículo accidentado. La Fuerza Aérea Brasileña ha añadido que el avión pertenece al hotel Emiliano, un lujoso complejo con sedes en São Paulo y Río de Janeiro. Al igual que el resto de magistrados, Zavaski estaba disfrutando de sus vacaciones estivales pero había decidido interrumpir el asueto para trabajar en el proyecto de mayor envergadura a su cargo: el caso Petrobras.

Él era el instructor de la macrooperación que lleva dos años destapando centenares de casos de desvío de fondos públicos y sobornos entre la clase política. Entre ellos se encontraban aquellos políticos que gozan de aforamiento y solo pueden ser investigados por el Tribunal Supremo. De ahí que todos los ojos políticos del país siguieran siempre tan de cerca los pasos de este magistrado. También tenía el poder de homologar las llamadas “Acusaciones del fin del mundo”: las decenas de confesiones recientes de ejecutivos de la empresa Odebretch, en las que han descrito con detalle cómo sobornaban a la clase política y qué favores obtenían a cambio.

Se esperaba que Teori Zavascki decidiese en febrero si daba por buenas estas confesiones que implicaban a centenares de políticos, incluido los núcleos duros del gobierno actual, de Michel Temer, y del anterior, de Dilma Rousseff.

Viudo desde 2013, Zavaski deja tres hijos. Uno de ellos, Francisco, había denunciado, en mayo de 2016 y en Facebook, que la familia recibía amenazas por la actividad profesional de su padre (ninguna sobre la integridad física del magistrado). “Es obvio que hay movimientos de tipos muy variados para frenar el caso Petrobras”, escribió entonces.

A. B.
La muerte del magistrado Teori Zavascki puede provocar un retraso de meses en el caso de Petrobras en el Supremo. El artículo 38 del reglamento interno de la Corte estipula que el trabajo debe ser heredado por el sustituto del finado; el sustituto de Zavascki tendrá que ser escogido por el presidente del gobierno, Michel Temer y, después, refrendado por el Senado. Por poner un ejemplo, la última vez que se hizo una sustitución en el Supremo el proceso duró 11 meses entre la jubilación de un juez y la aprobación de su sustituto.

Pero cabe la posibilidad de que el Supremo se valga de una laguna del reglamento, según la cual la presidenta del Supremo, actualmente Cármen Lúcia, puede decidir unliaterlamente quién investiga el caso Petrobras. Esto se debe a que el artículo 68, tal y como está redactado, permite que cualquier caso pueda cambiar de manos conforme dicte la presidenta.

En: elpais.es

JPMorgan pays $55M to settle mortgage discrimination lawsuit

Image: https://rampages.us/izdivine/wp-content/uploads/sites/8175/2015/10/14.jpg

Image: https://rampages.us/izdivine/wp-content/uploads/sites/8175/2015/10/14.jpg

JPMorgan Chase agreed to a $55 million settlement with the government over allegations that it discriminated against “thousands” of black, Hispanic mortgage borrowers, it was disclosed Wednesday.

The bank’s independent brokers charged minority borrowers higher mortgage interest rates and fees during from 2006 to 2009, compared to “similarly situated white borrowers,” according to a government lawsuit filed in a New York federal court.

JPMorgan is expected to settle the lawsuit for $55 million without admitting any liability.

“We’ve agreed to settle these legacy allegations that relate to pricing set by independent brokers,” the company said in a statement. “We deny any wrongdoing and remain committed to providing equal access to credit.”

The settlement was just one of the actions reported Wednesday taken against JPMorgan by the government. On the same day, the Labor Department said it filed a lawsuit against JPMorgan alleging that the bank has systematically discriminated against female employees by paying them less than men in similar jobs. JPMorgan responded that it is committed to diversity in the workplace and is a “neutral decision maker.”

The mortgage lawsuit, filed by U.S. attorney Preet Bharara of the Southern District of New York, alleges that the average black or Hispanic home buyer paid about $1,000 more than white borrowers with the same risk profile.

Altogether, the alleged discrimination cost at least 53,000 borrowers “tens of millions of dollars in damages,” the government said.

JPMorgan Chase attorneys denied the allegations in a response filed in court.

In the lawsuit, the U.S. government sought damages for borrowers, civil penalties and an order preventing further discrimination.

The bank gave its independent mortgage brokers the discretion to adjust pricing based on factors not related to borrower risk without documentation or justification, the government alleged. The lawsuit also accuses Chase of rewarding brokers with bonuses for charging interest rates above those based on standard credit criteria.

The average black borrower paid about $1,126 more over the first five years on an average loan of $191,100, according to the government, while the average Hispanic borrower paid about $968 more on an average loan of $236,800.

“Even when Chase had reason to know there were disparities, however, Chase did not act to determine the full scope of these wholesale pricing disparities, nor did it take prompt and effective action to eliminate those disparities, nor did it engage in adequate efforts to remedy the impact of those disparities upon the borrowers,” the plaintiffs charged in the lawsuit.

In: usatoday

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