As the World Social Forum opens in Mumbai, India, the spotlight has been turned on Coca-Cola and Pepsi, whose products have been found to be laden with pesticides and insecticides.
Fast Track trade authority has squeaked through Congress. Analysts from the Institute for Policy Studies say it is one set back among many victories in a battle that is far from over.
In the wake of the multiple scandals over tainted Chinese food and drug exports in recent months, Chinese goods now have an indelible image of being not just cheap, but life-threatening as well. But the fact that wrongly labelled foods, liquor and pharmaceuticals have routinely sickened and even killed people en masse in China has been largely overlooked.
As global commodity prices have plummeted and several of China's partners in Africa have stumbled deeper into chaos, China has backed away from some of its riskiest and most aggressive plans. China has sought to secure minerals in Africa through agreements to build huge projects in exchange for minerals. African governments are now realizing that these deals are loans against future revenue, and falling prices could leave them saddled with debt.
The South African government has intervened to support the Indian-born Gupta brothers, owners of a sprawling conglomerate with interests from mining to media, following a scandal that suggested that the brothers had accumulated so much power that they could dictate cabinet-level decisions in the country.
The movement for a different kind of globalization is in danger. Either we expose what the police are actually up to and prevent the violence of the few, or we risk shattering the greatest political hope in the last several decades.
The 2012 United Nations Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development event comes after two decades of major changes in the global environment since the 1992 Earth Summit. One of the biggest differences is the enormous growth in corporate power which will not be addressed by the agreements on the table.