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Arts and Culture

Sean Penn’s Diplomatic New Gig

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Posted on Jan 17, 2012
Wikimedia Commons / Seher Sikandar for rehes creative (CC-BY-SA)

He’s certainly been rehearsing for this role for years (remember his post-Katrina floating photo op?), and now Sean Penn has an honest-to-goodness new post as the ambassador at large to Haiti, as of a special ceremony held in his honor last weekend.  —KA

CNN:

The dinner, which was organized by Cinema for Peace, raised $5 million to put toward the efforts of rebuilding, according to a statement, and Penn told CNN at the event that Haiti is at a crucial turning point.

“The work that has been done, while slow and frustrating in many cases, it is a miraculous amount of work that has been done in the last two years,” the actor said. “If we’re able to follow through on that – build the trust between the countries and build the trust between the organizations that are doing productive work as opposed to those that don’t - I think that this could be a dynamic jump forward.”

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By jamie1950, January 22, 2012 at 10:43 am Link to this comment

Sorry for the misplaced words in last post I do suffer from dyslxscia

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By jamie1950, January 22, 2012 at 10:39 am Link to this comment

Hello heterocchrochromatic,
You’re on the spot about Clinton era also the last days in office he signed
the Banking modernization act sponsored Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999
with removed 52 republicans and 1 democrats voted this act removed the
Glass-Steagall act put in place after the Great depression started by the
stock market crash of 1929. Well hear we are again the same wealth
distribution as the Roaring 20’s.

Now about Haiti http://www.pih.org/pages/haiti from Partners in Health.
By the way I enjoy the debate.
Always follow the money

Report this

By heterochromatic, January 22, 2012 at 9:07 am Link to this comment

ghost~~~ you continue to make an ass of yourself. how
can you call someone a “Clinton stooge” without even
knowing who the guy is?

and again, you seem unable to grasp the simple point
that clearing P-a-P of rubble and seeing that nothing
else was going to topple can’t be seen as looting
anything when the money for the work was provided by
the US.

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ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, January 22, 2012 at 8:56 am Link to this comment

@ Heterochromatic:

Perhaps you will reconsider your opinion of my description of Haitian “reconstruction efforts” as something more than “guesses.”

The deliberate destruction of the Haitian economy is thoroughly documented and available from any number of “major media.”

A mere five seconds of effort typing “deliberate destruction of Haiti” into the Google search engine reveals over 5 million results, most of which are actually relevant.

Instead, you rely on the hearsay of a Clinton stooge, which Clintonian personnel are complicit in the systematic looting and subjugation of Haiti and its people.

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EmileZ's avatar

By EmileZ, January 22, 2012 at 3:49 am Link to this comment

On the second anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti that killed roughly 300,000 people and left more than 1.5 million homeless, we speak with Randall Robinson, author of “An Unbroken Agony: Haiti, from Revolution to the Kidnapping of a President.” The United Nations estimates international donors gave Haiti over $1.6 billion in relief aid since the earthquake and more than $2 billion in recovery aid over the last two years. But critics say little of the funding made it directly to the Haitian people, instead going to international non-governmental organizations and private companies involved in the relief effort. “I’m not surprised that the reconstruction efforts are not going well,” Robinson says, “because I don’t think the United States, officially, ever wanted anything to go well in Haiti.”

http://www.democracynow.org/2012/1/13/2_years_after_devastating_earthquake_haitis

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 8:53 pm Link to this comment

thank you, jamie. it’s at least something more than a
cynical ghost of a guess.


I happen to know somebody who was sent to Haiti by
President Clinton in the mid-90s and he visited Haiti
after the quake. He noted that there are no companies
capable of handling big jobs in Haiti and not even a
fire department in the country.

(privately, he’ll venture to say that the corruption
is massive and all controlled by a tiny number of the
same old SOBs)

it not bothersome to me that Haitian companies
weren’t drawing big contracts because the shit
wouldn’t get done.
doing the job and employing Haitians to do the work
and actually paying them their wages is more
important.

but again, thanks for bringing something real to the
table. even if it shows the dismal truth of Haiti
that nobody is going to create a fundamentally new
and better life for the island, your article does
show that the US did see to cleaning up the mess and
helped put some US money into Haitian pockets as they
did so.

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By jamie1950, January 21, 2012 at 8:33 pm Link to this comment

Hello heterochromatic
Check it out this how the US government works
The Washington Post article Jan14th 2010 one year after the earthquake
this is just crony politics as usual
Alex Dupuy, writing in The Washington Post, reported a similar pattern in
Haiti, noting, “Of the more than 1,500 US contracts doled out worth $267
million, only 20, worth $4.3 million, have gone to Haitian firms. The rest
have gone to US firms, which almost exclusively use US suppliers. Although
these foreign contractors employ Haitians, mostly on a cash-for-work
basis, the bulk of the money and profits are reinvested in the United
States.” The same article notes, “less than 10 percent of the $9 billion
pledged by foreign donors has been delivered and not all of that money has
been spent. Other than rebuilding the international airport and clearing the
principal urban arteries of rubble, no major infrastructure rebuilding –
roads, ports, housing, and communications – has begun.

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By tony wilson, January 21, 2012 at 8:23 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

what is he saying about us marines using child prostitutes..yer nothing.
what he saying about the us use of depleted uranium missiles all over the
world,yer nothing.
what is this passionate man saying about the killer front man for big corp murder
inc.yer nothing.

just another sucker thats joined the club

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 3:50 pm Link to this comment

ghost~~~ I don’t miss the damn point…..I merely haven’t seen the point made…..
Please show us how the money spent for cleaning up Port-au-Prince was all
scammed off and not of benefit to the people of Haiti.

it’s certainly possible that your guess is correct, but a flaming cynical guess
doesn’t amount to more than a handful of cold piss.


now I know of a half-dozen ways that some of it MIGHT have been bled off or even
never have been really all there or even might have been misrepresented in value
as part of a write-off deal, but tell us the work didn’t get done or wasn’t worth
doing and show us what REALLY happened and YOU’LL be providing far more
value than asking us to accept your guesswork as gospel.

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ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, January 21, 2012 at 3:33 pm Link to this comment

You keep missing the point.

Somehow someone in the US coughed up 100 million dollars and spent that digging rubble in Haiti (yeah, right).

The reasons are obvious why they did that: it’s called Disaster Capitalism/Economics. They did this rather than giving the Haitians the loot and letting them figure out what needing doing and how to spend that cash.

Wake up and smell the charity bait and switch, dude. It stinks.

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 12:05 pm Link to this comment

ghost—-you’re getting really silly now and spewing
sludge.

if the Haitians had the machinery and money to dig
themselves out in short order, they could simply have
gone ahead and done. They could have gone right ahead
and employed the vast array of medical personnel,
medical supplies, temporary shelter and food aid as
well.

Except they didn’t have more than a fraction of any
of it. Spare us the crap about pretending that I said
that the Haitians are lazy, ghost. There are plenty
of Haitians living in my neighborhood and I haven’t
met one who’s lazy.

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 11:55 am Link to this comment

jamie~~~ I’m not all that naive or all that trusting in
thinking that what starts out as well-meaning gets
carried out in the same spirit or always produces good
result.

We once trained a young man from Haiti in medical
practices in the US and he returned home and had, in
course of ridding Haitians of disease, all the pigs in
Haiti killed. He meant well, but the measure deepened
poverty.

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By jamie1950, January 21, 2012 at 11:15 am Link to this comment

heterochromatic
Just like in the NFL what have you done for me lately? All tax dollar
kickbacks to what corporations? I think you might be somewhat naive to
how the US government works in my humble opinion. The music act Arcade
Fire has kept the conversation going more then the USA I’ve seen nothing
at all or heard anything at all from our government. Where did you come up
with your info?  Just Sayin.

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ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, January 21, 2012 at 11:14 am Link to this comment

This is what I’m talking about.

Providing $100 million in aid is considered leaving Haitians “without means.”

Oh wait a minute - what you’re saying is that somebody *else* used up a hundred million ameros to shove some debris around while the Haitians sat on their incompetent asses, ‘cause they’re too freaking dumb to be able to figure out how to move some dirt.

Jeeze, what was I thinking?

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

ghost~~~~ cleaning up after an earthquake for people
without the means to do it themselves is an example of
“chauvinistic charity work” ?

I think you’re getting a little carried away here.

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ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, January 21, 2012 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

First of all, San Francisco (which is a union town) is not Port au Prince or any other part of Haiti.

Also, $100 million will buy a lot of importation, diesel, fuel and spare parts, and it’s fucking Haiti, so yes you can just “fill up dumpsters and cart them away.”

You’re doing the same thing that people object to about chauvinistic charity work in every Third World country: First World thinking, which includes the assumption that we know better than the locals about how to get something done and let’s just throw a shitton of money at the problem, and ignore the natives, cause they can’t do shit without our oh so superior techniques and knowledge.

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By heterochromatic, January 21, 2012 at 8:49 am Link to this comment

ghost~~~~ for starters, you cant buy the equipment if
there’s done around….....it had to be imported.

and cleaning up after an earthquake isn’t just filling
dumpsters and paying to have them carted away.

go count the cost of cleaning up the San Fran quake in
the late 80s.

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ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, January 21, 2012 at 3:39 am Link to this comment

@ Heterochromatic:

How is spending $100 million to push crap around a good deal for anybody?

That’s 33 cents a cubic yard. A pretty piss-poor deal and about 10x what it costs in the United States. It’s another example of what Naomi Klein calls Disaster Economics.

You can buy outright a used Caterpillar D5 bulldozer for $26,000 in A1 condition. For a lot less than $100 million you can buy dozens of dozers and hire half of Haiti to bulldoze shit.

Somebody’s got their priorities twisted.

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By heterochromatic, January 19, 2012 at 3:43 pm Link to this comment

jamie, I’m sure they’re doing much good, but to say that they’re done more than
the US govt is quite over-the-top. 

consider just the $100 million +  spent on clearing the 33,000,000 cubic yards of
rubble from Port-au-Prince, one facet of the work that was done…...

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By jamie1950, January 19, 2012 at 7:30 am Link to this comment

Mr. Penn should look at the work of Partners in Health 96% of donations go
straight to the cause founded by Dr Paul Farmer.  They in my estimate have
done more for the people in Haiti then the USA government. Watch and
learn.They are building a hospital there as I write this.

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By heterochromatic, January 18, 2012 at 7:54 pm Link to this comment

bray—- I may think that Penn is a couple of cards
short of a full deck, but I’m not gonna believe that
he’s hanging out with “tet panye” because he’s an
admirer of that goon until I see real solid evidence of
it.

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By gene bray, January 18, 2012 at 6:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

sean penn went out to dinner with “baby doc”. see web site “the black agenda”.

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they call me the working man's avatar

By they call me the working man, January 18, 2012 at 1:00 am Link to this comment

Wha wha whaaaat? Countries and organizations working together productively? The cult of selfishness trolls will not be pleased.

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By heterochromatic, January 17, 2012 at 10:02 pm Link to this comment

di—- it’s not his sense of justice or his hate that I question, I like those; it’s his
judgment about who truly serves the people.

Chavez is a tough case considering how badly things are generally run in SA
and he was a positive influence for a while. But he’s turned into a mess and a
would-be totalitarian with a lousy, near non-existant regard for people’s
political rights….and a terrible recent record for delivered any economic benefit
in the short-term while he failed to use the the oil bubble windfall to build any
base for a long-term improvement.

Once he coulda been a contender, but he failed and now he’s just another
Bolivarian Banana Republican hoping to hold on until he kicks off.

and kinda krazy as well…..long has been…. did you catch this one?


————“Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez speculated on Wednesday that
the United States might have developed a way to give Latin American leaders
cancer, after Argentina’s Cristina Kirchner joined the list of presidents
diagnosed with the disease”.————

http://guanaguanaresingsat.blogspot.com/2011/12/did-us-give-latin-
american-leaders.html


as with so many of Hugo’s krazy komments, it was so so stupid….especially as
it turned out that the lady didn’t have cancer,.

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By diamond, January 17, 2012 at 9:09 pm Link to this comment

More importantly will it interfere with your duties as the right’s answer to Groucho Marx? Sean Penn is a good person who actually has a sense of justice.  People like you hate good people, despise justice and admire evil bastards. That’s just how you are and you will never change.

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By heterochromatic, January 17, 2012 at 7:28 pm Link to this comment

will this interfere with his duties as Court Taster in Caracas?

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