Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Tuesday, September 23, 2021

Well, I think I’ll abandon my crackpot efforts to score a spot on the annual John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “genius award” list. Because the 2008 edition was announced today, and of course, I didn’t get the coveted phone call.

It’s not so much that I wanted to get my grubby little hands on that $500,000 no-strings-attached grant money. No, really. It’s that I feel the world is just a little bit poorer for not having a MacArthur Foundation Blogging Fellow in its midst.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 09/23/2008 11:46:45 AM
Category: Bloggin', Creative
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Regardless of what happens in the U.S. on Election Day, it looks like Barack Obama definitely will be elected into office — in Brazil.

Due to a quirk in Brazilian electoral law, candidates can put any name they want on the ballot, as long as it isn’t offensive. At least eight candidates have chosen to be known as “Barack Obama” in the Oct. 5 elections.

The Illinois senator is hugely popular in Brazil. The prospect of a black U.S. president has generated enthusiasm across the country, where more people call themselves black than anywhere except Nigeria…

Claudio Henrique dos Anjos, who’s running for mayor of Belford Roxo on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, took the name Barack Obama de Belford Roxo and said he’s gone from third place in the polls to a tie.

Maybe the Obama campaign should explore extending the American voting franchise to South America. How many Electoral College votes is Rio de Janeiro good for?

An aside regarding racial identity in Brazil: There’s a strong linkage with the United States in terms of Brazil’s parallel maintenance of a slavery system until the late 19th Century (in fact, Brazil didn’t emancipate its slaves until 1888, more than two decades after the U.S. Civil War). But the similarities pretty much end there, as the scale of African influx into the country effectively created a sociocultural structure radically different than that found in North America. Interesting, then, that so many Brazilians still look north for Obama’s example.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 09/23/2008 11:16:53 AM
Category: Politics, Society
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