Thursday, June 23, 2011


As the evening arrives to Buenos Aires, they begin to appear. They trawl the streets of virtually every neighbourhood of the capital. They get in the rubbish and tear up all those black sacks and plastic bags of refuge emptied from the city’s apartment buildings onto the pavements; and they cause what is let’s face it, a rather ugly mess. 

They are however a hard working lot and like it or lump it, they’re providing a service.

The tens of thousands of cartoneros, perhaps best translated as cardboard people, make their living by extracting recyclable materials from the city’s rubbish.

Generally working in teams, whose members will commonly include children as young as seven or eight, they roam the streets from the early evening until the early morning, pushing carts from one corner to the next and ransacking the rubbish bags that are left for the binmen, in search of paper, plastics, metals and anything else they can flog.

Friday, June 3, 2011

You can't light up here che

Argentina has become the eighth country in Latin America to ban smoking in public places. The legislation, which was passed in the Senate last August, was approved by Congress this week by 182 votes to one.

The law means that all enclosed spaces including bars, restaurants and offices will be 100% smoke-free and will therefore limit smokers to lighting up outdoors or in their homes.

It will also ban tobacco advertising and will force cigarette manufactures to place warnings on their packs, prohibiting the use of words such as ‘light’ and ‘mild’ which give smokers a mixed message. From its second year the law will even stipulate that a cigarette cannot contain more than one milligram of nicotine and 10 milligrams of carbon monoxide.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Give us back the Malvinas and you can have my vote

FIFA vice-president Julio Grondona - My hands are clean

“I think there is corruption everywhere,” said Argentine Julio Grondona, the head of AFA (Argentine Football Association) and vice-president of FIFA. 

But in an interview with the German press on 31 May he denied personally having taken a bribe during the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids and confirmed “I have never asked for anything.”

Except that one little time of course when,

“I told the English, look let's be brief, you can have my vote if you return the Malvinas Islands which belong to Argentina.”