Little Feat Announce Full Band Performances For Northeast Run

first_imgRock and roll staples Little Feat are gearing up for some fun times ahead, as the group has just announced a handful of shows in the Northeast. While members Fred Tackett and Paul Barrere occasionally perform as a duo, this will mark the full band’s first shows in some time, and we couldn’t be more excited.Unfortunately, however, the run doesn’t kick off until September, so there’s plenty of time to build anticipation before the magic. The four-night run will see the band hit shows in Boston, Port Chester, Huntington, and Washington DC, bringing all of their classics to stage for an exciting round of performances.Check out the full schedule below, and head to the band’s website for details. Pre-sale for tickets begins tomorrow at 10 AM, and full on sale for tickets will happen this Friday, March 25th, at 10 AM.Little Feat Tour Dates9/8/16 – Boston, MA – Wilbur Theatre9/9/16 – Port Chester, NY – The Capitol Theatre9/10/16 – Huntington, NY – The Paramount9/12/16 – Washington, DC – Warner TheatrePresales are Wednesday at 10am > Thursday at 10pm.On sale to public Friday at 10am.[Photo via Little Feat FB]last_img read more

Trey Anastasio Band Announces Two Additional Fall Dates

first_imgTrey Anastasio Band just announced two brand-new dates for the fall! Today, Trey Anastasio Band announced that they will headline Canada’s Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival in Fredericton, New Brunswick on September 15th. The band also announced that they will perform at Thompson’s Point in Portland, Maine, the following day on September 16th. Following these new September dates, the band will continue on to Grace Potter’s Grand Point North Music Festival in Burlington, Vermont, on September 17th.Grace Potter Announces Trey Anastasio Band As Co-Headliner For Grand Point North FestivalThese dates come in addition to the already scheduled performances at The Fillmore in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Delfest in Cumberland, Maryland; Summer Camp Music Festival in Chillicothe, Illinois; Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado; Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre in Salt Lake City, Utah; and Big Sky Brewery in Missoula, Montana to close out Trey Anastasio Band’s spring tour, which ends in Montana on June 3rd. The summer will also see the Trey Anastasio Band perform together during High Sierra Music Festival in Quincy, California, as a lead-in to 4th of July.Trey Anastasio Announces Two New Symphony Performances This FallTickets for the Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival go on-sale today at the festival’s website here. Tickets for the September 16th Thompson’s Point show in Portland, Maine are on pre-sale here right now. The pre-sale ends on Thursday, May 18th, at 5 p.m. (EDT), and will go on sale to the public on Friday, May 19th, at 10 a.m. (EDT) here. You can check out Trey Anastasio Band’s full touring schedule here, which also includes two solo symphony performances by the Phish guitarist toward the end of September; on September 27th, Trey will perform with the Nashville Symphony at Schermerhorn Symphony Center, and on September 29th, Trey will perform with the Atlanta Symphony at the Atlanta Symphony Hall.last_img read more

Bhabha awarded Humboldt prize

first_imgLiterary and cultural theorist Homi K. Bhabha, Anne F. Rothenberg Professor of English and American Literature and Language and director of the Mahindra Humanities Center, has won a Humboldt Research Award for his academic contributions.The honor celebrates Bhabha’s entire body of work in the humanities, and recognizes his “cutting-edge achievements in the future,” the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, which is based in Germany, said in an emailed statement.Bhabha will attend an upcoming conference in Germany, speaking at the Center for Literary and Cultural Research in Berlin about his work and philosopher and political theorist Hannah Arendt.Diana Sorensen, dean of Arts and Humanities and James F. Rothenberg Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures and of Comparative Literature, said Bhabha, who holds an honorary degree from Free University of Berlin, is an academic force who has “coined many turns of phrase and concepts that have charted a way of thinking that help to address many of the concepts of our time.”“There’s practically no essay I will read by a Latin American, French, or American critic that doesn’t engage with Homi’s ideas,” she said. “He has a way of getting at literary and broader world problems with a conceptual acuity that helps people think through similar problems.”Since 2007, Bhabha has sat on the board for the United Nations Education, Cultural, and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) World Report on Cultural Diversity.Beyond his intellectual capacity, Sorensen praised Bhabha as the “ultimate convener.”“He has an idea — perhaps about violence, or the public and the private — and he gets people together to think about it,” she said. “In that sense, he makes the University happen.”last_img read more

AI — The Time for Action is Now

first_imgThe U.S. is already one step ahead of the game — last December, members of the American Congress presented a bill on the ‘Development and Implementation of Artificial Intelligence’. Its aim is to establish a Federal Advisory Committee for AI. The drafters reasoned that understanding AI “is critical to the economic prosperity and social stability of the United States.”How forward-thinking of them. But they have nothing on the Chinese — the Chinese State Council has stated that it wants China to be the leader in AI by 2025, which implies that they want to knock the U.S. from its pole position. Even the U.K. is eyeing up a lead position. But what about Germany? Ever since the pandemonium of last summer’s election, when the two largest parties frantically pushed for an AI ‘masterplan’ after China’s statement, not much has actually happened.I didn’t expect a change in pace either, though. I think it’s much more important that politicians have the issue on their radar at all, and that they understand the implications of artificial intelligence.Here is where opinions are diametrically opposed. Tesla’s Elon Musk and celebrity physicist Stephen Hawking have branded this technology “our biggest existential threat.” Steve Wozniak has attempted to offer a more balanced opinion, while Mark Zuckerberg has praised AI to the high heavens.Of course, businesses are optimistic about what the future holds for AI, and are already using it for a wide array of applications: from communication, to cognitive searches and predictive analytics, to translation. The next big thing is the autonomous car. The (German) automotive sector, which used to focus on tin and steel, is also undergoing significant changes. Other sectors are following suit. To companies, AI is the game changer that will improve all our lives and revolutionize the economy. The results of our latest study on the working world of 2030 show that the majority of the 3,800 business leaders surveyed already anticipate a close human-machine symbiosis in the coming years. However, the same study also shows a clear split in opinions. Roughly half of the respondents were pessimistic about the effects of AI, while the other half were optimistic.So what do we do now? The most important question concerns the implications that AI will actually have — will it usher in a bright new future or social disorder? The discussion on job losses is already in full swing.Apocalyptic scenarios aren’t the only things we should be thinking about, but at the same time, it is worth reflecting on regulation at this early stage. I think that the AI expert Oren Etzioni has the right attitude. Following the example of Isaac Asimov’s laws of robotics, he suggests three simple rules for artificial intelligence systems so that we are equipped for the worst-case scenarios and can prevent any conceivable damage. He says that AI must be strictly regulated, that AI must be discernable from humans, and that AI cannot arbitrarily handle confidential data. These may seem like superficial rules, but they serve as a very good starting point and basis for discussion.Are these ideas a little too ahead of their time? I don’t think so. If we tackle these issues as early on as possible, then we will be in a much better position to plan the future of artificial intelligence. Isaac Asimov wrote his laws of robotics way back in 1942, and they are still considered exemplary, even today. And if that’s not a good source of motivation, then I don’t know what is.last_img read more

Radium Girls’ premieres at Saint Mary’s

first_imgWith just three day’s worth of rehearsal remaining, director Richard Baxter changed his vision for the upcoming Saint Mary’s fall production, “Radium Girls.” Something was simply not working in the last scene, and instead of making minor adjustments, he threw out the ending altogether, Baxter said.   “What you see is nothing I set out to direct … So much changes when you get in the [stage] space,” Baxter said. “You’re constantly changing things … That’s what I love about this.” Interpreting the script by award-winning playwright D.W. Gregory, Baxter said he directs a cast of 15 Saint Mary’s students ranging from first-years to seniors along with several of the College’s male professors and two male community members to tell a compelling story of young factory workers who begin a campaign for justice after being sickened by radium-laced paint on the job in 1920’s New Jersey. The play, which will premiere Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Little Theater in the Moreau Center for the Arts, takes place over a period of 20 years with a majority of its focus in the 1920’s during a time when radium was considered a miracle substance believed to cure cancer and other illnesses when in fact the element had the opposite effect, Baxter said.   “Directing this play makes me think of two things:  It makes me think, ‘How do we apply the ‘Golden Rule,’ how do we really treat each other the way we want to be treated?’ The second is, ‘What kind of radium products do we have now?’” Baxter said.    Radium is one of several prevalent themes present in all aspects of the show, including the colors in the costumes, costume designer Melissa Bialko said. “The things that I really tried to visualize were simply the colors of radium and what you’d stereotypically think of radium to be, so it’s sort of hitting the audience over the head, but it’s fun as well,” Bialko said. “There’s a lot of yellows and greens, and then there are supplemental blues and purples and neutral colors.”   Baxter and theatre professor Katie Sullivan chose to stage “Radium Girls” after considering several other works. The selection process involved keeping a thematic four-year cycle in mind in order to make sure students coming into the theatre program are exposed to a variety of styles, time periods, playwrights and venues.  “As I read [“Radium Girls”], it filled all the criteria that we had set out.  We wanted something that would involve as many female actors as we could find, something that wasn’t too technically demanding, something that we think we can costume [and] something we could produce in a small space,” Baxter said.   “The big thing is we wanted a good story, something that was compelling and interesting.  At the end of that process, we felt this was the best choice.  It was very cinematic.  There are a lot of short scenes that are tightly woven.  It’s a compelling story.  It’s about social justice.  It has a lot of female characters, the time period works, [and] that’s how we decided to do the play.” Baxter was already familiar with “Radium Girls” because of his personal connections with the playwright through his wife, Baxter said.   “D. [W. Gregory] had sent me a script last year to see if I had any interest in it, and I did, but I didn’t have any venue for it,” Baxter said.   Senior theatre major and stage manager Molly B. Goodman said she had no knowledge of the play prior to its selection, but her subsequent research led her to also find connections within its context. “I actually have family from New Jersey so I talked to my grandparents that live out there about what was happening, and they remembered people talking about it when they were growing up, so it was interesting to hear that,” Goodman said. Baxter said the show’s success derives from crew members’ extra efforts.   “You have to be selfless enough to say what’s better for [the] play, what’s better for the crew, what’s better for the cast, what’s better for the audience, and if you do that then you can really collaborate well,” Baxter said.  The play will run Thursday through Sunday, and Gregory will take part in a panel discussion Friday titled, “Radium Girls, Opening the Doors of Justice” about the labor issues explored in the play. The talk, coordinated by the College’s justice education program, will take place at 1 p.m. in Welsh Parlor of Haggar College Center.  Contact Emilie Kefalas at [email protected]last_img read more

Odds & Ends: Gary Griffin Leads Parade & More

first_img Star Files Angela Lansbury May Blithely Cross the Pond Dame Angela Lansbury might play the wacky Madame Arcati in the U.S. once more. According to The Daily Telegraph, the current West End production of Blithe Spirit, starring Lansbury and Jemima Rooper and directed by Michael Blakemore, is eyeing a move to this side of the Atlantic. Rooper says, “We’re hoping to bring it back with her in the U.S…[Lansbury]’s almost 90 and she’s delivering every day.” The Broadway legend won her fifth Tony Award for her performance in the 2009 Broadway revival, also directed by Blakemore. Gary Griffin Joins the Parade Gary Griffin will helm the previously announced one-night-only concert performance of Parade at Avery Fisher Hall. Jason Robert Brown, who took home his first Tony fin 1999 for the show’s score, will serve as music director and conductor. Casting for the February 16, 2015 event will be announced at a later date. Griffin is also set to direct Brown’s latest Broadway-bound show, Honeymoon in Vegas. Wanna Be a Producer? There’s an App For That Nabbing that Tony might be as easy as clicking your mouse. Maxolev Productions, headed by Howard and Janet Kagan, have launched a site to raise funds for the latest project: the upcoming Broadway revival of On the Town. According to The New York Times, the two hope to raise between $1 million and $2 million of their $8.5 million capitalization from the site. Performances are set to begin September 20. Sure beats becoming an investor of some potato salad online. View Comments Here’s a quick roundup of stories you may have missed today. Angela Lansburylast_img read more

Living on Love, Starring Renee Fleming, Sets B’way Dates

first_img Related Shows Living on Love In Living on Love, Fleming plays celebrated diva Raquel DeAngelis. When her husband, the fiery and egomaniacal Maestro Vito DeAngelis, becomes enamored with the lovely young lady hired to ghostwrite his long-delayed autobiography, Rachel retaliates by hiring her very own—and very handsome—ghostwriter to chronicle her life as an opera star. Sparks fly, silverware is thrown, and romance blossoms. The comedy is adapted from Garson Kanin’s Peccadillo. Fleming, a four-time Grammy Award winner, has performed on the stages of countless opera houses, including The Metropolitan Opera, where she will sing The Merry Widow later this month, Milan’s La Scala and London’s Royal Opera. In 2013, she was awarded the National Medal of Arts. Earlier this year, she released her first holiday album, Christmas in New York, which featured Broadway favorite and Merry Widow co-star Kelli O’Hara. View Commentscenter_img Show Closed This production ended its run on May 3, 2015 Opera superstar Renée Fleming will make her Broadway debut this spring in Living on Love. The previously speculated transfer of the Williamstown Theatre Festival production will begin performances on April 1, 2015 at the Longacre Theatre. It will open officially on April 20 and run through August 2. The comedy, written by Joe DiPietro, will be directed by Kathleen Marshall. Additional casting and creative team will be announced at a later date. The company of the WTF production also included Justin Long, Blake Hammond, incoming You Can’t Take It With You (which is currently playing a limited engagement in the Longacre) star Anna Chlumsky, Douglas Sills and Scott Robertson.last_img read more

Meet Brooklynite Standout Nicolette Robinson!

first_img Nicolette Robinson Brooklynite View Comments Related Shows Age: 26Hometown: Los Angeles, CACurrent Role: Astrolass, Brooklyn’s most celebrated superhero who secretly longs to be normal, in the new off-Broadway musical Brooklynite.Stage & Screen Cred: After graduating from UCLA, Robinson appeared in Billy Porter’s 2008 production of Once On This Island and early workshops of Brooklynite. She plays Jane, the best friend of Alison (Ruth Wilson) in The Affair on Showtime.“I was a really outgoing kid. I’d be in the other room and you’d hear me belting my face off, playing the piano as loud as I could so everyone in the house could hear it. I was kind of obnoxious, but very sweet and well-meaning!”“After seeing my husband Leslie [Odom, Jr.] in Hamilton, I’m so overwhelmed with pride. We’ve been together for six years, and knowing each other’s journeys fills me with so much joy. I have to catch myself because I start crying at a place where you’re not supposed to cry!”“I’m shy and I don’t like to make my friends watch me on TV, but people come up to me and are like, ‘Guess what? I started The Affair last night!’ We had no idea it would be received as well as it was when we were filming. But it’s an intense show to binge-watch—good luck, don’t get too depressed!”“My costume in the show is tight! [Choreographer] Steven Hoggett does a workout with us every day and kicks our asses, but I don’t have the most self-control when it comes to food. I love carbs and desserts, so there are definitely days where I say, ‘Why did I eat that chocolate cake before the show?!’””Matt Doyle is the best. He’s so talented and has an amazing voice, and he’s a dream of a human being and scene partner. He’s one of my dear friends now, forever. I love him.”“It’s amazing they created Brooklynite around a female superhero and cast an African-American woman. It’s awesome and very empowering. I can definitely walk down the street with more of a raised posture and confidence. Being a superhero starts to rub off.”center_img Show Closed This production ended its run on March 29, 2015 Nicolette Robinson photographed by Caitlin McNaney for Star Fileslast_img read more

The Next National Scenic Area?

first_imgThe Forest Service listened, and last month, they responded. In their 30-year draft forest plan, they acknowledged the rare and special qualities of the Craggy forest, and they recommended stronger protections for Craggy across all of its plan alternatives. Rural neighbors build a national coalition to protect a wild, ancient forest as the Craggy National Scenic Area Four years ago, a small group of Appalachian farmers, teachers, and carpenters sat around a wobbly table in their community center. They were worried: logging threatened the old-growth forest that surrounded their valley. So they began spitballing ideas about how to save it. They sketched out a plan that included door-to-door conversations, flyers at the local gas station, and a community meeting later that month. “We didn’t know what we were doing,” admitted Steven McBride, one of the neighbors around the table. “But we had to try. We just decided to go for it and got to work.” photo by Steven McBride The neighbors invited the Forest Service to attend the community meeting. The Forest Service managed the Craggy forest, and on the evening of the meeting, they showed up first. The community center was empty, except for a few volunteers offering apple cider and cookies to anyone who showed up.   What exactly are national scenic areas? They are federally designated public lands that have outstanding natural and scenic value. Craggy certainly qualifies as scenic. It includes the sweeping, breathtaking vistas from 6,000-foot Craggy Pinnacle and the Craggy Gardens Visitor Center along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Mountains-to-Sea Trail—North Carolina’s state trail, stretching almost 1,200 miles from the Smokies to the Outer Banks—rolls through the Craggy’s high-elevation spruce-fir forests. Craggy is also part of a contiguous 100,000-acre block of protected wildlands, including Mount Mitchell, the highest summit in the East. These vast, rugged wildlands were once nominated to be a national park. The grassroots gathering in the community center has quickly grown into a national coalition that includes hundreds of organizations and businesses—and thousands of supporters. The Forest Service has already received thousands of comments endorsing permanent protections for Craggy, and city council and county commissioners have passed unanimous bipartisan resolutions supporting the Craggy Wilderness and expanded protections for all of Craggy.  Now, the coalition is working with Congress to introduce the Craggy Mountain Wilderness and National Scenic Area Act to permanently protect Craggy. Craggy’s rugged, remote slopes would be recommended for wilderness designation, and the rest of Craggy—including its popular trail network—would be designated a national scenic area. “This is Craggy’s big moment,” says Hannah Furgiuele, one of the original Craggy organizers. “This is a rare and unique opportunity to permanently protect one of the wildest and most ancient forests in the East.”  • Coosa Bald, Georgia (1995) • Bear Creek, Virginia (2009) The United States only has 10 national scenic areas. Craggy could become the country’s eleventh.  They were hoping to protect the 16,000-acre Craggy section of Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina.  It includes ancient forests, waterfalls, pristine streams, 6,000-foot summits, world-class trails like the Mountains to Sea Trail, and panoramic vistas from Craggy Gardens, the most popular and photographed spot along the Blue Ridge Parkway. • Mono Basin, California (1984) Virginia boasts three of the country’s 10 national scenic areas, and Georgia is also home to a national scenic area. The designations’ flexibility—and Blue Ridge region’s natural scenic qualities—make the national scenic area designation an ideal fit for many classic Appalachian landscapes like Craggy. Could Craggy become the South’s fifth national scenic area—and North Carolina’s first? “There is nowhere more scenic and more stunningly spectacular than Craggy,” said Rob Lenfestey, neighbor and co-organizer of the I Heart Craggy campaign. “Craggy has all the ingredients to become the country’s next national scenic area: overwhelming public support, unanimous bipartisan support, and some of the most jaw-droppingly beautiful and biologically diverse forests in the country.”  National Scenic Areas in the United States + Year Designated • Beech Creek, Oklahoma (1988) You can also sign a petition and learn more about the Craggy National Scenic Area at • Alabama Hills, California (2019) A National Scenic Area might be the next best thing. National Scenic Area designations overlay existing public lands, such as national forests. Like wilderness, a national scenic area requires an act of Congress. However, national scenic areas are more flexible and adaptable than wilderness. National Scenic Areas can accommodate a wider variety of uses, including mountain biking. The Forest Service can recommend national scenic area designations in their forest plan, and the Craggy coalition hopes that they will. The Forest Service is currently seeking public comments on their draft forest plan for Craggy and the entire Pisgah National Forest. Already letters and emails supporting a Craggy National Scenic Area have flooded the Forest Service, and a supporting petition has collected over 5,000 signatures in just two weeks.  • Columbia River Gorge, Oregon and Washington (1986) • Indian Nations, Oklahoma (1988) • Mount Pleasant, Virginia (1994) • Seng Mountain, Virginia (2009) • Saint Helena Island, Michigan (2000) Southern Pride: The South boasts more national scenic areas than any area of the country, thanks to its stunning vistas and abundant recreational opportunities. Then the first few attendees wandered in—mountain families wearing hand-made t-shirts that said, “Don’t Cut Our Forest.” Scientists from three area universities arrived next. More vehicles pulled into the gravel parking lot—including dirt-splattered pickups and bumper-stickered Priuses. The organizers quickly ran out of cider and cookies. The community center filled to capacity with over 300 people, and more folks continued to arrive. On a cold, dark February night, they stood at the windows of the community center and waited out in the parking lot. Nearly everyone in attendance asked the Forest Service to permanently protect the Craggy forest. Fifth-generation farmers and hunters voiced support for keeping Craggy as it is. Seven-year-olds spoke with quivering voices to the Forest Service: “Don’t cut Craggy. Keep it wild.”  The momentum has ignited a national movement to create the Craggy Wilderness and National Scenic Area, which would permanently safeguard all 16,000 acres of Craggy. Craggy is one of the oldest and most biologically diverse forests in the country. It shelters dozens of rare and endangered species. Hollywood blockbusters have been filmed in Craggy’s enchanted forests, including The Hunger Games and The Last of the Mohicans. Waterfalls thunder down its rugged slopes. last_img read more

From Riches to Rags, the History of the Venezuelan Crisis

first_imgBy Marcos Ommati July 26, 2019 It is no surprise that countries — besides Brazil — that have received most of the migrants fleeing the crisis in Venezuela are Colombia, Ecuador, and Panama. In 1821, after a series of short-lived declarations of sovereignty, which followed several bitter battles, Gran Colombia, comprised of those countries, won its independence from Spain. Simon Bolívar played a key role in the struggle, forever winning the hearts of Venezuelans. Less than a decade later, Venezuela separated from Gran Colombia to become an independent country. In the 1930s, Venezuela was already one of the world’s largest oil exporters, with one of the largest crude oil reserves on the planet.The country developed and became a relatively stable democracy, and thanks to its vast oil reserves, one of Latin America’s fastest-rising economies. However, that great amount of petroleum became a curse rather than a blessing, with the country now virtually 100 percent oil-dependent. In 1983, a fall in world oil prices led the government to introduce widespread spending cuts. It became harder and harder to subsidize everything from the price of gasoline in gas stations to food in the supermarket with “petro dollars.”International Monetary FundThe Venezuelan president at the time, Jaime Lusinchi, signed a pact between businesses, trade unions, and the government to resolve the fallout, but he never enjoyed a smooth presidency. His successor, Carlos Andrés Perez, was elected in 1989 and had no other choice than to seek loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to try to reenergize the country’s economy. Historically, funds from the IMF come with a series of restrictions and highly unpopular conditions, particularly requirements for a vast reduction in social assistance spending. This situation caused the downfall of President Perez, and opened the doors for populist leftist leaders to arise. One of them was a young military officer named Hugo Chávez, who in 1992 led a failed coup attempt and was subsequently jailed, along with other disillusioned officers. Despite the failed coup, ordinary Venezuelans, tired of corrupt politicians and longing for “the good old days” of oil-based subsidies, admired the bravery of Chávez.From jail to the presidencyEventually, Chávez was released from jail and founded the Movement of the Fifth Republic. Casting himself as a leftist firebrand by selling the idea of giving power to the people and ending the corruption of the traditional political parties that had governed Venezuela for over a quarter of a century, Chávez won the 1998 general elections with 56 percent of the vote, becoming the new president.Chávez began his presidency with the support of the people, when the price of a barrel of oil was selling for more than $100. Venezuela was a nation so awash in petroleum revenues that the leftist government spent huge amounts on social programs and, at one point, even provided almost all of the petroleum consumed in Cuba, in exchange for the support of Fidel Castro’s regime. Once in power, Chávez replaced the existing Congress by creating a new National Assembly, which he controlled. He used his new National Assembly to rewrite the constitution to perpetuate himself in power, after muzzling the press as well as his opponents to get the law passed. Chávez served as president for 14 years, until his death in March 2013. However, his biggest promise to the Venezuelan people of improving poverty in the country never became a reality.Bus driverHis replacement, Nicolás Maduro, was a former bus driver, union leader, and unconditional follower of Chávez, who had Maduro appointed to the National Assembly. As his handpicked successor, Chávez also appointed Maduro to become the secretary of State, the vice president, and finally anointed him as his heir. Maduro inherited a country in shambles, which had become more oil-dependent than ever, and increasingly divided.As Venezuela’s situation worsens, the Maduro regime arrests opposition political leaders, shuts down news outlets and arrests journalists. In 2017, Venezuela’s Supreme Court, filled with Maduro loyalists, took away the powers of the National Assembly, increasing his control. The following year, Maduro was reelected in an election that a coalition of more than 50 countries says “lacked legitimacy.” Meanwhile, the situation continues to worsen, and pressure from the Venezuelan people, who are seeking an end to their hunger and daily struggles, is growing by the day.According to UNHCR, the Refugee Agency for the United Nations, and the International Organization for Migration, which called the pace of the outflow staggering, the number of people fleeing Venezuela has now exceeded 4 million, or roughly 12 percent of its entire population.In November 2018, Human Rights Watch warned of Venezuela’s “devastating health crisis,” and increasing rates of maternal and infant mortality, in addition to a spike in cases of measles, diphtheria, tuberculosis, and malaria. Susana Mújica, who suffers from kidney disease, summarized the critical situation in Venezuela in an interview with the British newspaper The Guardian: “We know the reality. It is crystal clear to us because we are the ones living this reality every day… Whether we live or die isn’t important to them. Their priority is staying in power.”last_img read more