For those interested in peace and the non-violent resolution of conflict the prognosis is not good. Not just because the war on terror keeps producing enemies with whom, it is said, there is no negotiating, but because the legal and political framework it has engendered has transformed the way in which political violence and armed conflict is understood and managed.
Since the current drug laws were enacted several important changes have taken place inside and outside of Myanmar. The decision of the Myanmar Government to review the law is not only timely but also offers a prospect to improve the drugs legislation and to ensure that the laws address drug-related problems in the country more effectively.
Myanmar's National Land Use Policy promises to make profound changes to the current economic, social, and political-institutional landscape. This is an important and bold step, but its impact will depend on how it addresses the often “messy” details of actual land based social relations.
What are the potential gender implications of the current land use policy draft in Myanmar? How might it be improved to promote and strengthen women’s land rights?
The neoliberal free market has been 'constitutionalised' through law in Europe and elsewhere as a way to prevent challenges to financial and corporate power. The new technocracy put in place poses a serious danger to democracy and freedom.
Growing public awareness of corporate violations has led to various initiatives to improve corporate behaviour but these serve largely to beautify the beast. What options are on the table that could rein in corporate power and lay foundations for a new economy?
Dutch investment treaties (BITs) are frequently used by foreign companies to sue governments in the North and South for policies that might harm their future profits. 75% of these cases were brought by mailbox companies with no real economic substance in the Netherlands, making use of the vast web of Dutch BITs and the rights and protection given to foreign investors.
Corporate crime is not due to a few´bad apples´ but to an architecture of impunity and a structure of power that puts corporate rights above human rights. An infographic from the State of Power report 2015
The investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) clause present in many trade treaties give investors far-reaching protection, curtailing governments’ ability to regulate for progressive agrarian and agricultural policies and reinforcing the notion of land as a commodity.
Economists consistently have upheld the power of elites, at times by taking their side overtly, but most often by ignoring or obscuring power, giving economics a veneer of science, in which the impact on people and the environment is hidden from public view.