Fox's Farewell Address -- Bring in the Troops

It was supposed to be his grand farewell, a moment to bask in high popularity ratings and a strengthened economy. But outgoing President Vicente Fox faces a bitter -- potentially violent -- showdown tonight, uncertain whether he will be able to actually deliver his final state of the nation speech or even make it to the podium inside the Chamber of Deputies.


Instead of preparing one last victory lap for the man who ousted the once-dominant PRI, the plan is to erect a veritable shield of armor around Fox.

All day Friday, Mexicans strategized about street and subway closings as political commentators speculated on what will happen at 7 p.m. (central time), when Fox is scheduled to stand before Congress to give the speech, known as the Informe.

"As Mr. Fox prepares to deliver his final State of the Union address Friday, that work includes resolving a political crisis that could plunge the nation into violence. He might not even be able to enter the site of his speech, the lower house of Congress, because protesters are threatening to block his path," explains Alfredo Corchado of the Dallas Morning News.

"While these addresses normally are used to discuss poverty, crime and other issues, Mr. Fox confronts a volatile civil disobedience campaign by leftist politician Andrés Manuel López Obrador, designed to reverse presidential election results that left him the apparent loser. The results showed Felipe Calderón of Mr. Fox's National Action Party beat Mr. López Obrador by 239,000 votes."


Narrated Photo Gallery: Vicente Fox's 'Revolution'

Yes, after camping out in tents in Mexico City's Zocalo for weeks, López Obrador and his supporters are now threatening to block entrances to the legislative building, create traffic gridlock and even physically surround Fox so that he cannot speak. López Obrador and his Democratic Revolutionary Party, or PRD, are targeting Fox because they say the president has illegally aided Calderón during and after the July 2 election.

As the Los Angeles Times points out, Fox has been anything but circumspect about his attitude toward the two candidates.

"As López Obrador and his supporters ridicule the tribunal's conclusions, Fox and his government have tried to bolster its image, as well as that of the Federal Electoral Institute, which organized and ran the election. One government-sponsored television commercial shows a woman telling the camera, 'I defend the tribunal, because the tribunal defends my vote.'"

Not Quite Official, But...

We're still waiting for Mexico's election tribunal to certify Calderón as the official winner of the July 2 election -- the seven judges have until Sept. 6. But ever since the panel rejected López Obrador's demand for a full recount, virtually everyone agrees the certification is a fait accompli, and Calderón will almost certainly be sworn in as president on Dec. 1.

The tribunal's refusal to acquiesce prompted López Obrador and his PRD party to raise the stakes once again. He has promised massive, unspecified civil disobedience today and beyond.

"The Informe is only one potential flash point in the PRD-PAN confrontation that has shaken the nation since the July 2 election. Another is Sept. 16, Independence Day, when the PRD plans to hold a 'constitutional convention' in the Zócalo - despite the traditional military parade that arrives at the square in the morning and the president's annual 'grito' from the National Palace the evening before. PRD officials on Wednesday said they don't seek a confrontation with the military, but they would not reschedule or relocate the convention."

Known by his initials, AMLO is now talking about scheduling meetings of his parallel government every six months.

In preparation for this evening's event, government workers have fortified gates around the legislative building and officials announced they were doubling security forces. Between 8,000 and 8,500 city police officers and federal agents will be on hand. (And Campaign Conexión thought the Secret Service went a little overboard in Washington for the president's State of the Union!)


Federal police step up security in preparation for President Vicente Fox's final state of the nation address. (REUTERS/Andrew Winning)

Both sides are amassing small arsenals.

"For weeks, an army of federal police wearing riot gear has stood behind the 12-foot-high steel wall protecting the compound. There also were water cannons mounted on trucks. Roads were blocked and officials announced late Thursday that most subway stations in the area, as well as near the presidential compound, would be closed - a quick way to ensure that if demonstrators want to get anywhere near Congress, they're going to have to walk for miles."

What makes the drama especially interesting -- and different from most protest movements in the U.S. -- is that many lawmakers are vowing to participate, and not just with speeches. It won't be enough for Fox to simply make it inside the chamber. Once there, he'll have to contend with a sizable block of PRD legislators who will certainly hoot and holler, and very possibly physically block him.

Don't Worry, Be Happy

For all the threats from PRD, the Fox team is putting on a good face, with claims that he won't be deterred. But behind the scenes, discussions have been underway about other options, including a "Plan B" option that has him arriving by helicopter if protesters make it impossible for his motorcade to navigate the downtown streets.

As in the United States, the Mexican president is not required to deliver the speech in person; it has simply become a tradition. Fox could send a written report to Congress or address the nation directly from the safe confines of a radio or television studio.

According to El Universal, "PAN leaders also huddled Thursday, including an evening session called by its Senate leader, Santiago Creel. Party officials promised to 'protect' the president, though without answering any violence with their own. 'We PAN legislators won't be provoked,' said Marko Antonio Cortés Mendoza, a PAN senator.

"In an interview with EL UNIVERSAL Thursday, Cortés said Fox should deliver his speech on television if he is prevented from giving it at the Chamber. 'It's a way for him to reach every Mexican's house, so they can be aware of the achievements made during his last year in office,' he said."

Either way, the Fox camp is privately putting out the word that this will be a brief speech.

The former Coca Cola executive is finishing his six-year term with popularity ratings that would make George W. Bush salivate.

But Mexican surveys can be deceiving. In a country where positions of authority garner great respect, it is common for citizens to tell pollsters they like or approve of a leader. More interesting in the poll are Fox's ratings in specific categories. While he scores high for honesty and managing the economy, Mexicans are disenchanted with his performance in the areas of job creation, security and combating corruption.

Regardless of what happens this evening, Calderón won't be in the chamber. The almost-president-elect plans to watch the speech from his transition offices. Calderón aides say he is merely following tradition; Fox, for instance, did not attend Ernesto Zedillo's final speech. But they weren't exactly on the same team. Were it not for the tribunal and López Obrador's challenges, Campaign Conexion suspects tonight's address would have been the perfect opportunity for him to symbolically hand the torch to Calderón.

Now it looks as though the Harvard-educated Calderón will mark his victory on Sept. 10. Juan Camilo Mourino, head of Calderón's transition team, said the PAN has a right to celebrate. (No word on where the López Obrador folks will be that day.)

At a meeting with party leaders in Cuernevaca, Calderón sounded a conciliatory note, speaking of "opening the door to dialogue." Where there is division, he suggested, we will sow unity, where there are insults, we will speak the truth.

Back at the Encampment

For those of you unable to get to the Zocalo, Jonathan Roeder, has an excellent account of his recent visit to the tent city.

"Guadalupe Acosta Naranjo, secretary general of López Obrador's left-leaning Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) and also in charge of the encampment's logistics, showed reporters a map of the encampment, complete with the locations of the 80 gas tanks that are firing the grills and greasy stovetops that feed the movement.

"City civil protection officials, he added, constantly worry about the camp, telling them the amount of fire extinguishers required."

Roeder introduces us to student demonstrators, an enemy "infiltrator" and a man from López Obrador's home state, charged with serving up meals for his compadres. "The cook, Don Pedro Gallinos, said he occasionally gets special orders from López Obrador himself, who hails from the southern Gulf state. His favorite dish, they said, is pancita, or tripe stew, prepared Tabasco- style with garbanzo beans and tomatoes."

By washingtonpost.com |  September 1, 2006; 4:51 PM ET  | Category:  Campaign Conexión
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Excellent coverage Cici and a fun, informative blog to read.

We've linked to a few articles and editorials slamming AMLO for calling for a parralel government, at the Mexicans and Americans Thinking Together Blog. Just when you think it's nearly over it gets more interesting.

http://mexicanosyamericanos.blogspot.com

and visit http://www.matt.org

Posted by: Adam | September 1, 2006 05:48 PM

Ceci,

Vicente Fox is a an all around good guy. He is likable, decent and THE BOSS.

In this little comedy of an Informe he has all the cards and all the big sticks. All other players are rabble rousing dwarves.

Fox represents not only the Executive branch of government. In a very peculiar way, we Mexicans all feel offended personally because he represents each one of us. He is US. We back him because the rowdies are attacking all of us. They don't own the Zocalo nor Reforma street, they don't own this large country of ours. We, the people are coinheritors in our lifetimes of this sacred Motherland, and we won't allow some tin pot gorillas think otherwise.

Fox, you tell them that!

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 06:14 PM

Well said, Rodolfo! Little Lopez and his merry little bunch of street fighters will not bring down this great nation-- as long as the people back their president and the institutions established by law.

No matter what happens tonight, Mexico will survive. Even if he has several million people willing to follow him, the nutty guy from Tabasco does not have the support of the vast majority of Mexicans. He cannot claim to represent the "people," when the majority of the voters rejected him. As the CIDAC poll shows, if the election were held today, Little Lopez would get even fewer votes and Calderon would win with over 40 percent.

Fox should stand firm and let the military maintain order if need be. No one has the right to break the law in pursuit of political ambition.

Posted by: Goyo | September 1, 2006 06:22 PM

Ceci, you wrote:

"As in the United States, the Mexican president is not required to deliver the speech in person; it has simply become a tradition. Fox could send a written report to Congress or address the nation directly from the safe confines of a radio or television studio."

The constitution says (capitals are mine):

Artículo 69 - Informe Presidencial

Artículo 69.- A la apertura de Sesiones Ordinarias del Primer Período del Congreso ASISTIRÁ el Presidente de la República y presentará un informe por escrito, en el que manifieste el estado general que guarda la administración pública del país. En la apertura de las sesiones extraordinarias del Congreso de la Unión, o de una sola de sus Cámaras, el Presidente de la Comisión Permanente, informará acerca de los motivos o razones que originaron la convocatoria.

ASISTIRÁ = attend

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 06:37 PM

Goyo,

Music to my ears:

The new concept of democracy - According to AMLO - Mexican Election Post #22

The head of the election tribunal came close to the final determination on the Mexican election by suggesting that save about 4000 votes Mr. Lopez Obrador failed to win (he lost). But wait.....

#1 - AMLO has suggested that he will give his own Grito on independence day (September 16) and declare himself president. but #2 - Polling is turning against this self styled messiah. In a poll released in the Wall Street Journal the following responses were reported -

a) Do you agree with AMLOs resistence to the election results - NO 68%, b) Based on what you know who do you think won the July 2 election - Calderon 62%. c) If the election were held today who would you vote for Calderon 54% (on July 2 37%), AMLO 30% (on July 2 36%), Madrazo 12% (on July 2 23%) - thus support for Calderon has come at the expense of both Madrazo and AMLO.

Finally, (based on a 10 point scale with 10 being high) - How would you rate the following - The voters in the July 2 election (8.2), The electoral tribunal after the election (7.1), Calderon's conduct after the election (7.1), AMLOs conduct after the election (4.1).

posted by Dr. Tax in Sacramento at 5:07 PM

http://drtaxsacto.blogspot.com/


The "crisis" will be a shambles of a house of cards, Lopitos and all, blown away by the new democratic Mexico.

Posted by: | September 1, 2006 06:38 PM

The "Music to my ears" post was mine.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 06:52 PM

mexico is a great country fox has done a great job this mad man who has lost the election and his thugs must pay the penalty for all the cost incurred on a major developing country jv

Posted by: don jose | September 1, 2006 06:56 PM

K.Vronna,

Ceci isn't supposed to know the prissy punctiliousness our government attaches to parlamentary rites and rituals.

We break the law in every which little way we can in our daily lives but when it comes to pomp and circumstance, girl, aren't we barroque.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 07:04 PM

Why should Mexican taxpayers have to subsidize with our taxpesos the PT and Convergencia parties that are only political wings of the PRD. What's the difference between the three?

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 07:19 PM

Can't say I blame them. Look what not protesting over the stolen elections in the US did to our nation.

Posted by: Will in Seattle | September 1, 2006 07:24 PM

I'm sorry my friends, I don´t have any respect for a person (Fox), who told us "stupids, you don't believe that Mexico can grow at the 7% (economy)"... until now we don't grow at the 7%...

I respect the institutional figure, but not the person, for that Fox don't has my respect.

Posted by: Max | September 1, 2006 07:35 PM

Unfortunately for Fox, his crystal ball didn't work so well in predicting 9-11 and the world economic recession.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 07:42 PM

Will in Seattle,

Would your local police allow a sit-in blocking all entrance to your main square and your main street be settled by squatters for an indefinite period of time?

Are Seattle police idiots of some sort?

Are the vast majority of Seattle inhabitants chumps who will be trampled upon?

Would the State police sit on their hands?

They shure would if they were perredistas.

The only reason this silliness is happening in Mexico City is because the PRD mayor is in cahoots and is lapdog to Lopez wishes, the real boss running things here.

In Europe they had an Adolph and Italy had their Mussolini. Here we have our Lopez to remind us of old fascistic glories.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 07:54 PM

K. Vronna,

WOW! so now the failure of Mr. Fox administration can be blamed on 9/11?

He did everything right from your perspective, right? another foxiland believer!
Yes we have less poor people in Mexico, Viva!!
Viva Mr. Fox!!! Viva Mr. Fecal!!! y que Viva la gente estupida que no se informa correctamente!!

Posted by: Anti-Yunque | September 1, 2006 08:02 PM

Anti-Yunque/ViviClone
Just a comment on a fact that many refuse to take into account. Did I say that 9-11 was the justification for everything that went wrong? Did I say that I am a believer in Foxilandia? Is your last sentence a well thought out and respectful argument? Insults are a dime a dozen and going down in price everyday due to their great abundance, especially from AMLO supporters. Find an anger-management group fast before you sour your life forever.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 08:16 PM

Anti-yunque,

you're right... viva la gente que no se informa correctamente! viva the sister republic of Reforma! Viva to the people that don't even bother reading the whole constitution. Viva to the people who think everyone is out to get them. Viva the people who are so anxious to hold power that they invent a non exitant fraud. Cause everyone knows that that is the kind of people I want(not)to rule my country...

Posted by: bunburina | September 1, 2006 08:19 PM

K.Vronna,

Happy with your sexy article 69?

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 08:30 PM

It's hard to believe that the PRD leadership is allowing this kind of damage to their party. Running up to the podium waving banners and chanting a stupid slogan to block the President from speaking? I don't know how this is playing in D.F. but in Monterrey, people who formely supported AMLO are more and more embarrassed by these antics.

Posted by: Greg | September 1, 2006 08:56 PM

Beyond Sour Grapes

September 1,2006

Left-wing deputies in Mexico have just taken over the stage in Congress, preventing President Vicente Fox from making his final state-of-the-nation speech.

These thugs should be put in jail and face the maximum penalty the law allows. It's time for the real Mexico to get tough.

Posted by: Fred Phil | September 1, 2006 08:58 PM

What are the angry people protesting about?

Posted by: Senor Love | September 1, 2006 09:04 PM

I'm still amazed by how far the Coalition goes to discredit their cause. At least they didn't physically harm the president, or carry out violent marches, but still they reinforced their image of intolerance. They should go to the Profeco to demand their PR people, what a disaster! Just hope that the real left can come out of this as a viable alternative.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 09:11 PM

If I were President Fox-- I would act on behalf of the nation and its institutions and use my last few months in power to put things in order. First-- federalize the police force of the DF. Clean out the Zocalo and get rid of the plantones along Reforma.

If the Little Lopez people get nasty, fight fire with fire. I would also bring a couple of young cops on television with me so that they could tell their story-- about how these "peaceful" demonstrators throw rocks and filth at them. People would see that these are not "robocops," but human beings. They are Mexican men and women trying to earn a living and doing their job to uphold law and order. It is a disgrace that people elected to Congress to make laws are violating the laws and destroying the very institutions upon which democratic government is founded.

Let's hope the president gets tough and stops this nonsense.

Posted by: Goyo | September 1, 2006 09:17 PM

If I were President Fox-- I would act on behalf of the nation and its institutions and use my last few months in power to put things in order. First-- federalize the police force of the DF. Clean out the Zocalo and get rid of the plantones along Reforma.

If the Little Lopez people get nasty, fight fire with fire. I would also bring a couple of young cops on television with me so that they could tell their story-- about how these "peaceful" demonstrators throw rocks and filth at them. People would see that these are not "robocops," but human beings. They are Mexican men and women trying to earn a living and doing their job to uphold law and order. It is a disgrace that people elected to Congress to make laws are violating the laws and destroying the very institutions upon which democratic government is founded.

Let's hope the president gets tough and stops this nonsense.

Posted by: Goyo | September 1, 2006 09:19 PM

I'm not angry at all K. Vronna. I'm just laughing here reading all those pro-PAN people's comments.
Those who still believe everything is going super-duper in Mexico. Those who think Televisa-TV Azteca are serious in their news programs and not biased.

BTW. I could care less for AMLO-PRD same as I care less for PAN-PRI-YUNQUE-etc

My view is that Foxilandia has not solved many important issues in Mexico and I seriously think Fecalandia won't solve those either (as well as Amlolandia if that would've been the case).

As an observer from the US since I migrate here 10 years back I think there's a good chance of doing a regression on the political arena to almost 40 years a go. I just have to say, what a f*ing shame!

Posted by: Anti-yunque | September 1, 2006 09:24 PM

K.Vronna,

Cuauhtemoc is waiting in the wings, Amalia is an OK governor and the Lopez lunatics will be shunned and expelled, or take their fascist pipe dream and their wonderful little party down with them.

The tribes are running amok, lapdog Marcelo gave a ranting nonspeech before Lopez today at Zocalo. He plays the lapdog routine to a tee.

There were hopes that he would rejuvenate the party rethoric, driving the party to a more sensible center. But a lapdog is a lapdog, that Marcelo little chihuahua.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 09:29 PM

President Fox presented himself in the Congress building and delivered his "State of the Union Address" in writing, thus complying with Article 69 of the Constitution.
His speech will be given at 21:00 hrs. on nationwide TV from the presidential residence, reaching a larger audience now.
Win-win situation!
What else is there to report?

Posted by: PETER FREDERIKS | September 1, 2006 09:30 PM

Peter Fredericks,

The Lopistas at Zocalo are gathering in numbers as you read this.

What will they do, where will they go, will they ever stop?

I'll keep you posted.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 09:37 PM

Just what a lot of people have said about the Coalition's miserable PR group, now Fox's speech will carry a much greater weight and be seen by a much larger audience like you say, Peter.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 1, 2006 09:38 PM

K. Vronna, why just their PR people? what about those polls that showed AMLO 10% ahead of Calderón? They should demand them too...

Oh but wait... wasn't AMLO their only PR people? their only strategist? their only pollster? Gee... maybe AMLO should demand himself to the Profeco...

Posted by: bunburina | September 1, 2006 09:43 PM

bunburina--- Just reading your post it came to me-- Of course, AMLO was in on the complo -- he conspired against himself. He needs to be put away in a dark room with a mirror so he can confront himself.

Posted by: Goyo | September 1, 2006 09:47 PM

Sow the winds and you will harvest storms, the saying goes, the right-wing is suffering that now, after the dirtiest political campaign in Mexican history, much owed to US Republican Party advisors, we all face an atmosphere of no governance, it will be difficult for López Obrador to be president, but it will the same difficult for Calderón, who is just a marionette of vested interests groups, reality goes beyond fiction, much is still to be seen, today's failure to give the state of the nation speech is sign for the times to come, let's wait until the 16 or, much better, let's be there

Posted by: depraman | September 1, 2006 09:54 PM

Goyo,

Hold your horses. You put a madman in front of a mirror and he'll hate himself like he hates us. He'll get so incredibly irate that the man is capable of harming himself like he has harmed us and our city. He might call himself paid and bought for, like he called his PRD polling station representatives. He might sit on his face, like he has done to our Zocalo.

Wait, let's get this guy to face himself, he'll sit on his ugly face and we will applaud the calisthenics. The guy can say magic, let's watch him do that magic on himself.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 09:58 PM

I was watching president Fox on Mexican tv, was he depicting Mexico or some other country? at moments I thought he was talking about Norway

Posted by: bored | September 1, 2006 10:08 PM

Did you guys know that what we have just witnessed today is something we should be proud of?

"Sí se pudo", gritan simpatizantes de AMLO en Zócalo

http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/notas/372599.html

They have some weird concept of good and bad. I can imagine some pejefan choping some carrots, and then, accidentally, cut himself a finger and say: "sí se pudo!! sí se pudo!!". Well that pretty much sums up what they are doing to their political career.

Posted by: bunburina | September 1, 2006 10:09 PM

The question is whether the newly " elected" president will be able to hold the country together in the face of his highly questioned victory.

I submit that if violence is exercised to obtain consensus, Mexico will head down the path of civil strife.

A dire test of gobernability awaits whoever stays in power.

Posted by: joel b | September 1, 2006 10:14 PM

bunburina,

I hope they castrate themselves all the way to Panteon de Dolores and Lopez be the first to jump into the grave they have dug for themselves.

Can anyone see this loony perredistas running a country?

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 10:19 PM

As a Mexican who is proud of his country, I pledge allegiance to our Nation, which is made possible by it's Institutions.

I strongly dissaprove the actions of a small, power-hungry, few, who are willing to throw all that's been built by so many real heroes who have in some cases sacrificed their own lives to lead forward our democracy trough betering our Institutions

Constitution, Presidency, IFE, Congress, Political Parties, are all powerful institutions that hold together our nation.

Lopez Obrador has demonstrated a profound disrespect to all mexicans by going agaist everything that we stand for: Democracy, Liberty, Freedom of Speech.

We don't want that for our future. We remember Porfirio Diaz. The revolution is over now. Let us live our democracy in peace.

Posted by: 2opinionated | September 1, 2006 10:35 PM

Anti-yunque (and anyone who feels like this person),

I am not here to make excuses for President Fox or the PAN or anyone else....however, President Fox is correct...there is no reason Mexico could not have grown at 7% or more during his six year term.

If the right labor and tax reforms were made as well as investment in infrastructure and education were made, Mexico could grow at 10%. From my point of view, he was to AMLO-esque in the beginning of his term...thus alienating both PRI and PRD conservatives. He was not willing to compromise on some issues to at least get half-watered down measures passed that would have started Mexico down the right path. The PRI, very angry from their loss in 2000 blocked all initiatives that did not originate with them....and since they had the largest block (I don't remember if it was a simple majority) there was nothing that President Fox could do to get the needed reforms passed. Thus no 7% growth in Mexico...be honest Anti-yunque, do you not believe that Fox's proposed reforms would have spurred economic growth? Does Calderon's current economic proposals not make sense either? They do to me....why don't they to you Anti-yunque?

I'm not sure what you mean by foxilandia...I am assuming it is a reference to Fox and his supporters living in a dream world...but that was not the case. They knew the realities, as all the current PRD congressmen do, and were not able to overcome the PRI and sometime PRI-PRD alliance to shoot down all of his major reforms. That is why I find it disgusting that all the PRD congressmen (as well as you Anti-yunque) criticize Fox (or any president of a republic) for the failures of his term. He had much non-help in getting there. If he had been able to pass all of his reforms and the economy still showed no growth, then I would agree with you and put the blame squarely on the president...but he did not get that chance.

I put much of the blame on the sore losers of the PRI for refusing to cooperate with the PAN at all costs...including the stagnation of Mexico for six years. I for one hope that the less radical factions of the PRD will cooperate with the PAN and PRI to pass Mexico's needed reforms.

Read any economic study on Mexico and you will see time and time again that the same reforms are recommended to spur growth in Mexico...the very same reforms that Fox (and now Calderon's job) tried to pass in Congress. It doesn't take a genius to realize that the economic failures of Mexico over the last six years are directly attributed to the opposition parties....not to Fox simply because he happened to be president at the time.

Well I've said my peace,
Cheers everyone

Posted by: RPM | September 1, 2006 10:41 PM

Sighhh... man, the few AMListas left aren't even challenging, like that kid Anti-Orc or whatever fantasy he's afraid will come and eat him while he's sleeping. I mean, he just hasn't the capacity to notice that almost no one lives in Foxilandia, we just don't want AMLO and he's proving us right.

I remember saying to my wife a couple of months ago "well, if AMLO wins so be it, lets hope he does a good job" but now... I think even Krauze's and Sanchez Susarrey (I mean, you put me in a positon of defending Susarrey for Pete's sake!!!) fell short with their descriptions.

Here's a prediction: in 3 years, the PRD will lose half the congress seats it currently has. Their only hope is to ditch AMLO soon.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 1, 2006 10:46 PM

Ariel,

I am watching in rapture as events unfold. One man's personality disorder is proving contagious.

There is no "crisis" and no real danger to the republic. What we have here is a buffonery and teenage exuberance that is intrascendent. All fire and brimstone but no effective blood spilling on either side.

Despite the imaturity you can sense a willingness to show but not act on the foolishness. Bad manners do not bring down a republic. It makes the fools look foolish and that is all.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 1, 2006 11:01 PM

So, is this the way it's going to be? Whenever a liberal candidate loses an election it was in some way "stolen"? Liberals just can't believe the majority of the people don't see things their way.

Posted by: Juan | September 1, 2006 11:20 PM

First of all, I think this is a great forum, very informative. It really has been the best source of information about both events and opinions surrounding this very important election.

I am struck by the vastly different perceptions of the election in Mexico from here in D. C. Here, the general feeling among people who have been following the election is that it was clearly stolen. Most people that I've talked to seem to feel that if the recount had really come up clean, the results would have been published immediately. And everyone agrees that given the closeness of the election there should have been a recount -- the reason the PAN is resisting is because they have something to hide.

Also, the general feeling is that one should put too much faith in all those pro-Calderon endorsements from newspapers --they're just following the advertising money.

What's particularly striking is that the PAN supporters seem to feel that the perception of fraud is a result of the actions of Lopez Obrador's supporters. Others may have a different experience, but my experience is that that's not true. Most of the people here are largely unimpressed by the whole civil disobedience thing. What is creating the perception of a fraudelent election is the refusal to recount the votes and openly present results. My impression (and its just my impression) is that the PAN is actually losing the battle of perceptions outside of Mexico.

Of course, this is just my experience. I'd be very interested to read about other people's experiences.

Posted by: On the Fence | September 1, 2006 11:35 PM

Unfortunately, this crisis is unfolding into the traditional comedy of the "Banana Republic" and a "people's Junta". What's next, yet another Mexican civil war? And how long will the American public tolerate such a violent civil war on our own doorstep before stepping in? Especially with tens of millions of American citizens of Mexican-heritage, and legal and non-legal Mexican citizen-residents here north of the Border-lands.

Next time it won't be at the cost of losing just Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.

Posted by: Ted in NJ | September 1, 2006 11:55 PM

Juan,

That isn't fair; conservatives also cry foul when they lose close elections. Here are four examples:

(1) 1994 Maryland Governors race: Losing Republican candidate cried foul and dredged up a list of dead people who had voted and thousands of "unregistered" voters. She was very embarassed when the Washington Post found her dead voters within 48 hours. Also the unregistered voters turned out to be voters who had moved in the past year and hadn't gotten around to updating their voting information.
(2) 2002 - South Dakota Senate Race: GOP went so far as to submit forged affidavits alleging fraud among Indian voters.
(3) 2004 - Washington State Gubenatorial Race: GOP tried to disqualify ballots from King County; judge ruled there was no evidence of fraud.
(4) 2004 Venezuela - Regardless of how one feels about Hugo Chavez, he DID win the election by a large margin (and he actually did implement a number of serious protections against fraud in the election; random sampling of ballots and random designation of those ballots into ballot boxes really does make it harder to commit fraud and easier to detect it).

The reality is that there is no such thing as a foolproof election; there will always be some fraud. A corollary to this is that parties that lose a close election will always be able to convince themselves that they were cheated, unless mechanisms are in place to ensure transparency.

A huge part of the problem in the recent Mexican election is that it doesn't contain very much transparency. It creates conditions which actually make it easier for a losing candidate to justify the belief that he or she was cheated.

Regardless of how one feels about Lopez Obrador and his claims that he won the election, his complaints about lack of transparency in the election are valid.

Posted by: On the Fence | September 2, 2006 12:04 AM

As a third generation Mexican American ,
You Mexicans suk just like those dumb ass americans that voted for dubya.
Viva Revolution!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Jesus | September 2, 2006 12:10 AM

"Regardless of how one feels about Lopez Obrador and his claims that he won the election, his complaints about lack of transparency in the election are valid."

You have got to be kidding. What? Are your friends too lazy to check each and every ruling from the tribunal, published on their web site? They don't have enough time to check each and every polling station's result, available on the internet too? Because they don't then if follows that there is no transparency? At least AMLO supporters took the time to look through them, how do you think they came up with the numbers in the first place? I feel their numbers are heavily biased but the fact is they got the chance to do so PRECISELY BECAUSE THE WHOLE PROCESS IS TRANSPARENT.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 2, 2006 12:16 AM

Now we noticed that there were no massive confrontation. The obsolete repressive apparatus set at El Congreso de la Unión represented a clear strike to the machiavellian plans of the oligarchies who lead the coup: PAN and closed right wing supporters.

AMLO, once again, showed no intention about leading a violent struggle. He did not send the masses to a danger confrontation against army´s gorillas (some of them trained in the USA).

But, of course, oligarchies own the Media, so they pretend to show a different story, something alike Fox-y-land, or Disney-land?

It`s a pity that Ceci does not cite mexican constitution and electoral federal laws. It would be so simple to show that Fox has not respected the Constitution, niether FeCal. It also would be so easy to show that if an electoral box has been violated (openned without the explicit authorization of the Tribunal Electoral), it must be cancelled. Now the judges are not respecting the law.

Everybody knows that in Mexico there is no legal principle or rule of law. That social order benefits, at least, to oligarchies, and at the end, to some imperialist oligarchies in the USA.

So the struggle is not only a national one, and it is not violent.

Peace is the principle of the left politicians; violence is the aim of the PAN.

I hope you mexican citizens practice your rationality and consider facts.

Posted by: Gorgojín | September 2, 2006 12:24 AM

It has often happened in these comments that Democrats from the USA have expressed sympathy or support toward AMLO after displaying bitterness toward the results of elections in the States that favored Republicans. While it is true that AMLO would be as anti-USA as any Liberal could possibly want a foreign leader to be, such people should do some research into what the man planned to do if he had been elected. His administration would have taken Mexico directly into a deeper economic crisis than we have now, for starters.

Posted by: Greg | September 2, 2006 12:31 AM

Gorgojin: Such rationality as was on display in the Congress tonight? Rationality like throwing out vague conspiracy theories with no evidence to support them? Rationality like calling for a parallel government? Losing people their jobs? Depressing tourism in vacation season? Making points by screaming simplistic sound-bite rants.

Posted by: Greg | September 2, 2006 12:44 AM

A lot of the people outside of Mexico did not perceive the profound democratic culture revolution that has taken place over the last years; it's one of those invisible news stories that never gets much reporting. It's easy to stereotype a country with such a tainted history of vote fraud, but it just doesn't represent the actual situation.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 12:53 AM

To see all gringos talking about "respect of the insitutions" when fraud has a long history in Mexico, started with the PRI and continued to these days.

It's also funny to see how all the "established media" get hysterical about the possibility of a left-leaning candidate winning across the border.

As a German friend used to tell me "the US has moved SO far to the extreme right, that what would qualify as a center government everywhere else in the planet is now seen as 'leftist' by the Americans".

I now live in Brazil and guess what? the hysteria by the "markets" and the "finance pundits" has passed, and even they agree the world won't come to an end if Fernando E. Cardozo wins his re-election term.

Posted by: It's so funny... | September 2, 2006 12:57 AM

Ummm, is this blog caught in a time warp? You live in a Brazil ruled by Cardoso? You know, for someone who lives in Brasil you sure can't spell Brasilian names. Cardozo-Cardoso, Enrique-Henrique, who cares?

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 2, 2006 01:27 AM

It's so funny to see someone who thinks Fernando E. Cardozo is running for reelection. If you happen to know a Fernando E. Cardozo, please, introduce him to me because I only know Fernando Henrique Cardoso, former president of Brazil.

Oh, and by the way, the current president of Brazil and the one running for reelection is Luis Inácio Lula da Silva, who is a center-leftist ok?

Posted by: bunburina | September 2, 2006 01:39 AM

On the Fence

Interesting to get an opinion from DC that's partially impartial (I love my oxymorons).

One of the reasons for a difference in perception is the fact that people are going to be more interested in a case of wrongdoing, than of something going fine. How many times have you read a headline, and subsequent analysis, saying "Elections held in Bongo Bongo land: Everything transparent and legal". We all like to believe in scandal about other peoples failures in the political/legal world. Makes us feel better that "we may have small problems with our sysytem, but look over there..."

The fact that the election was so close would lead me to believe that this was México's first real test of having free elections. Last time around there was a general revolt against 71 years of PRI government, people from all political backgrounds just wanted them out......this time the people felt able to choose the party of their conscience, as Fox (and if nothing else he must be remembered for this) "broke the mold" of the sitting power ruling the elections in their own favour.
So a close count should be welcomed, if you were fixing the election, would you leave it as close as 240,000 votes?

You maybe aware that the model for elections used in Mexico was also the model used in Iraq (you can leave the Iraq war politics out of this discussion if you reply), it was recommended by an international body as the best model.

There is such a history prior to election 2000 in Mexico that some people cannot change their mind set, and others, just can´t accept a loss.

You´ll find like minded people at every horse racing circuit in the world, convinced "It was fixed".

"And everyone agrees that given the closeness of the election there should have been a recount -- the reason the PAN is resisting is because they have something to hide."

Was George W. Bush "trying to hide something" in the 2000 re-count? Did he really get people to fix the machines so that democrats would only punch "hanging chads" etc in Florida? In the end the courts decided, and Al Gore accepted defeat. He didn´t get his supporters to camp on Pennsylvania Avenue, block the city, threaten, (like AMLO,although quite subtlety) to wreck the nations growth. If he had closed down hotels, restaurants and businesses in DC, the people there would have kicked him and his rabble out of town themselves. Probably with their own fire-arms.

The election was re-counted, in a sample of voting stations that Lopez Obrador claimed were fixed. The judges decided any error was down to innocent human error, or bad transcription, no fraud was found. And if there had been a re-count of all 41,000,000 votes, who would you elect to do it? Lopez doesn´t even trust his own party members, having branded some of them "bought by the opposition", when they had the nerve to counter his claims of fraud. Only AMLO (as Lopez is known here) could count the votes and give a fair (to him) result.

Finally, on this point, PAN did not resist a re-count, it is not in the remit of the winning, or losing, candidates to tell the electoral tribunal what to do. That is one of the things that makes it independent. If they felt they have the right to do that, they may as well say "lets toss (flip or spin in USA?) a coin to see who´s won"

"Also, the general feeling is that one should put too much faith in all those pro-Calderon endorsements from newspapers --they're just following the advertising money."

The richest man in Mexico (and I mean Bill Gates league of richyness!) owns Telcel, Telmex (both part of the national, highly expensive phone network), and a large part of the centre of Mexico city, (due to the gift of his friend AMLO), who probably told him he would not allow any competition in his telecommunications market if he won. Guess who might be the biggest advertiser in TV, newspapers etc?

"What's particularly striking is that the PAN supporters seem to feel that the perception of fraud is a result of the actions of Lopez Obrador's supporters."

That really is getting the horse behind the cart, AMLO was adamant he had won before the election, during the count and ever after. He has cried "complot" (which is best translated as "plan by many others to put me down") He has probably been surrounded by acolytes for so long in his strongholds of the DF, and Tabasco state etc that he believes he should have walked it. He lost the election by his own actions, not by TV spots aimed against him.

"My impression (and its just my impression) is that the PAN is actually losing the battle of perceptions outside of Mexico"

Actually, having had nothing to do today, I´ve read so many articles from around the world, I have to disagree, most are saying, to sum it up....

Calderon...dignified, getting on with things , looking forward.

AMLO.......last chance saloon, rude and pointless, wants blood on the streets to give him some legitimacy.

But it´s only my opinion!

Posted by: Darth Windsor | September 2, 2006 01:41 AM

All you Fox supporters are blind to the fact that the PAN has replaced the PRI as dictator of choice for the leading business figures/drug trafficers who run the country. They knew the PRI had run its course after the Salinas brothers and their cohorts went too far. Zedillo was put in there for damage control and to oversee the implication of the this phoney new democracy. Nothing's changed, the left has been robbed again, doesn't anyone remember Salinas/Cardenas or was that a fair election too? The Fox campanign in 2000 had more cash than Al Gore, most of it illegal. Why should people trust a system just because it says we're fair and transparent. Please

Posted by: Shamed | September 2, 2006 01:43 AM

On the fence comments "A huge part of the problem in the recent Mexican election is that it doesn't contain very much transparency. It creates conditions which actually make it easier for a losing candidate to justify the belief that he or she was cheated." That is an absurd comment for this election which every international observer described as fair.

The better description I have heard in the last couple of weeks was the following:

Come sé llama la partidad de AMLO?
No es PRD, pero ahora sé llama los perdedores.

Another friend said MALO reminds him of un niño con un jugete nuevo.

The Mexican people understand the stakes here and they won't allow some two bit messianic fraud to steal their democracy.

Posted by: drtaxsacto | September 2, 2006 01:45 AM

It's a shame what happened with the Informe though. I certainly hope that the PRDistas who are in a crusade to trainwreck Mexican political institution pay for this sooner or later.

The next two weeks are going to be a pivotal time. The President-elect will probably be announced within days, but it will be anyone's guess what more stunts AMLO is willing to pull. Then of course the Sept. 16th celebrations in Mexico City...

With any hope Fox will take the momentum for at least once in his sexenio, put the plantones out of commision, and leave AMLO's "gobierno paralelo" stillborn - and maybe even AMLO in jail for a long time. Wishful thinking, I know, but how long will this nonsense go on?

Posted by: Beco | September 2, 2006 03:22 AM

Darth Windsor,

Your Lordship, I knew there was a roaring lion inside that beer rusted Oxe's fordian exterior of yours.

Your blovinating discourse manages to put into so many, many words what K.Vronna did succintly and with deadly accuracy in her most excellent 12:53 AM post.

I like her little bombshell of Zapotec wisdom and I like your truly well thought out and as always, well-written rant. I cannot agree more and mirrors exactly what K.Vronna said in as few words.

Your posting and K.Vronna's are a wonder to behold. This "crisis" has never been better told.

The only clowns on a "crisis" mode are Lopez and his wet compadres.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 06:27 AM

Fox and PAN = Coca Cola (poison and death)

AMLO = Life

Posted by: Andy | September 2, 2006 10:14 AM

Abajo Coca Cola Fox y Pan

Arriba el futuro

Posted by: Andy | September 2, 2006 10:15 AM

Everybody has been focusing on the "rabble" in the streets, but there is little or no talk of the reasons why they believe that there was election fraud.

Why doesn't any news outlet actually give us the details about the nature of the alleged fraud? This is what I have been able to glean from fringe sources (I'd love to see some bona fide MSM research though!):

Apparently (although you are hard pressed to find this through MSM), throughout 90% of the election, exit polling and early returns were consistant (polls roughly matched returns) and showed Obrador ahead. During the last portions of the election suddenly while the exit polling stayed consistant, the election results no longer matched the exit polling. In many areas where people were reporting 60% support, Caldaron came out with 99% of the votes collected through those stations.

Even more telling, the results from the final stations contained EXACTLY the number of votes needed to give the election to Fox's chosen. There were also some questions that election returns for some of the questionable polling stations didn't come back until Caldaron/Fox knew the number of votes needed to give achieve victory. At the last minute, that number somehow arrived. Statisticians have indicated that the voting patterns for the final hours of polling are statistically impossible - and statistically inconsistant with the rest of the election.

These are the ballot boxes that the opposition wants to see: The ones where the "winners" got 99% of the vote - or the number of votes didn't match the number of people who apparently used the stations. The courts have refused to look at either issue. Just like the US courts refused to check out the same issues in Ohio (tens of thousands more votes than voters through some stations).

I'm not saying the election was stolen, but nobody in power seems to want to look at the questions. It appears that Mexico has embarked on another 75 years of "one party" rule. Fox didn't liberate Mexico, he simply took power for his own group to dominate. Like the Mexican GOP - anyone remember Florida (party-line court vote to ignore the election results and certify the GOP Prez)?

Posted by: KGB | September 2, 2006 10:52 AM

KGB,

I lost you in the third paragraph of your encyclopedic forensics in fraud analysis.

I was about to leave, so I will be back and tangle with your little house of cards conspiracy theory in just a little while.

I will dissect it and bring light to your obfuscating and nonsensical speculations.

A veritable house of cards, your mighty fortress erection. Likewise, fresh winds of democratic realism will blow away your doubts, speculation by speculation, argument by argument, you will be set on the straight and narrow, amigo/a.

Con permiso.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 11:08 AM

KGB, how about some citations from credible sources? It seems AMLO's only real "evidence" is that he is a self-involved crybaby and won't accept the fact that a plurality of citizens didn't endorse his promise of utopia.

Posted by: RC | September 2, 2006 11:18 AM

On the fence:

Personally, I am inclined to agree with many of your assessments, except the one in which you say that the feeling "here in DC" is that the election was clearly stolen. That is definitely not my impression - and I am someone who personally feels that it was. My impression of the impressions here in DC is that most people believe PAN won and are somewhat dismissive of AMLO. This is DEFINITELY true of our media. They actively want the PAN guy to have won. That much is palpably obvious and I can't believe you don't pick up on it.

To the other one who writes in and says "So a close count should be welcomed, if you were fixing the election, would you leave it as close as 240,000 votes?" To some that's close, to others not close at all. Maybe folks in Florida (2000) would say it's not at all close compared to what they went through (500 votes), or Chicago (1960) would not either.

Posted by: Vye | September 2, 2006 11:31 AM

tic,tac;tic,tac;tic,tac.
Onky few days and we have "presidente electo". Beatiful. Lopez Obrador sera "presidente legitimo" pero de la Casa de la Risa en......La Chontalpa, Tabasco.

Posted by: Eduardo Valle. | September 2, 2006 12:06 PM

KGB asks why the MSM has not highlighted the alleged fraud. He goes on to comment that "Apparently (although you are hard pressed to find this through MSM), throughout 90% of the election, exit polling and early returns were consistant (polls roughly matched returns) and showed Obrador ahead." I am not sure what kinds of meds he seems to have come off but let me offer a couple of comments. First, anyone who has worked around elections over time understand that over an evening results shift. Part of that is based on which precincts are counted. For example, in California, traditionally absentee ballots are counted first (although in the last few years that is not entirely true) and absentees were more likely to vote for the GOP. So in early returns, even in democrat districts, GOP candidates would traditionally rack up seemingly insurmountable leads. In the end they would lose - but that was not fraud not timing. Second, in any counting system there are logistical issues. Normally, ballots are counted in the precinct (casilla in Mexico) and then transmitted to a central place. Traffic and other things can change when votes are counted. Third,exit polling is noticeably an inexact science. A lot depends on which precincts are used and whether the questions asked actually can give you a good response. There are numerous examples of exit polling making huge errors. The exit polls in a close election would be tremendously variable. Fourth and finally, every independent observer who participated in this election said the vote was among the cleanest in history, in any country. That is a fine comment on the role of the IFE. Each of the precincts had party representatives witness the count and then sign off on the results.

This was a close election. 240,000 votes is not a huge margin. But sometimes the electorate is divided. From all of my discussions in Mexico coming up to the election - it was my distinct impression that it would be a very close election. If KGB wants to look for a conspiracy he might look to the third place candidate. I suspect that if Mercado had not been in the race AMLO might have had a better shot. I had a couple of younger friends who went with Mercado because of her social issues stances. Had all those votes gone to AMLO he would have won. But as in all elections - it was what it was.

The key fact, which AMLO does not want to admit, is that he lost. But when you think you are a messiah you don't have to mind yourself with minor things like expressions of popular votes.

Posted by: Drtaxsacto | September 2, 2006 12:40 PM

First, I would like to thank everyone for their polite and constructive replies.

Second, I would like to make it clear that as a US Citizen, I have no desire to express an opinion regarding whether there was fraud or who should be president of Mexico -- that's a decision best left to Mexicans.

My sole motivation for participating in this forum is that I am genuinely unhappy with the endorsements given Calderon by the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and New York Times. They set a precedent which could be applied to US elections, and that distresses me. For I think there is one overriding issue that is being ignored: Who owns the ballots, the people or the state?

I feel very strongly that the answer to this question must be the people. If that's true, then Lopez Obrador has an absolute right to have the ballots re-examined and neither the Mexican government nor the Washington Post has the right to deny him. He has challenged the election, said he doesn't trust the results and has demanded to see the ballots. This right should not be predicated upon him meeting any additional standards.

While I respect the opinions of those people on this line who have expressed the opinion that the recent election was transparent and fair, I'm afraid I must respectfully disagree. I think there are numerous examples where the recent election has failed to meet accepted standards for transparency and verification.

Despite the closeness of the vote, 90% of the votes in the election have never been recounted.

Although there appear to be tens of thousands of casillas having significant administrative or other errors, the IFE made no effort to evaluate either the cause or the magnitude. An audit of these discrepancies should have occurred IMMEDIATELY after the election, not six weeks later.

On July 3, the PREP reported that 99% of the votes had been counted, even though the IFE knew full well that there were 2.5 million votes that could not be included due to errors in the actas. This mistake should have been corrected immediately, not 36 hours after the election. (I might also add that if this was a mistake in the PREP software, it is a VERY odd error for tested software -- a full investigation by independent experts should also have been performed).

The TRIFE annulled approximately 150,000 votes (4% of the recount total) and then declared the election valid. The results of the recount should have been published IMMEDIATELY upon completion of the recount.

In fact, the entire concept that the ballots should be protected so carefully and then NEVER examined again constitutes a fair lack of transparency in and of itself.

Let me empasize that none of these issues, either singularly or collectively constitutes fraud. My intention in posting is not to criticize the Mexican election, but to criticize the Washington Post and the rest of the US Press for endorsing the desires of their advertisors rather than upholding the people's right to a full inspection of the votes. I would hope that they will do better in the next US election, but I have scant hope.

Posted by: On the Fence | September 2, 2006 12:45 PM

Gorgojín commented "Everybody knows that in Mexico there is no legal principle or rule of law. That social order benefits, at least, to oligarchies, and at the end, to some imperialist oligarchies in the USA."

Not everyone knows this. Anyone who has observed Mexico since the 1988 election is that there has been a determined effort to make the electoral system much more transparent. The creation of the IFE is but one example. A large number of Mexicans have worked very hard to create a better system.

He also comments "So the struggle is not only a national one, and it is not violent. Peace is the principle of the left politicians; violence is the aim of the PAN." What nonsense. Lopez Obrador and his followers are itching to have a repeat of 1968 - they would then protest the "martyrs" but the times are different. And the opposition understands his tactics. Why is it not violent to disrupt the lives of thousands of people at random? Why is it not violent to prevent the President of the republic from fulfilling his constitutional duty?

Posted by: drtaxsacto | September 2, 2006 12:53 PM

Calderón says "we the peaceful people will prevail over the violent ones", gimme a break, the one who has been promising "though hand" calls himself and his partisans "the peaceful people", the ones who promoted the worst hate campaign on the Mexican media, when the worst liers call the other liers then something is wrong, something stinks, we have reached the last state of sophism, it s time for another revolution, and this could be indeed a peaceful one, if possible

Posted by: depraman | September 2, 2006 12:58 PM

Ceci, your prejudiced coverage of the Mexican political upheaval is symptomatic of the rather shabby intellect of the western postmodern post-colonial left. Keep up the prejudiced work, while your readers laugh behind your (and WaPo's) backs.

AMLO received only 1 out of 3 votes, because he had no economic program. He refused to come on a TV debate and he made sure his anti-democratic agenda was well hidden. Until the left can develop a program to reduce corruption and create wealth, nobody in Mexico will seriously listen to them. This will probably never happen because the left deep down does not agree to civil and open society, and has no idea how to help the poor, except for stealing from the middle class.

Posted by: Karim | September 2, 2006 01:39 PM

"Until the left can develop a program to reduce corruption and create wealth, nobody in Mexico will seriously listen to them", true in the meanwhile we'll keep listening to the Mexican right, whose program aims at increasing poverty and corruption through our sacred institutions.

Posted by: depraman | September 2, 2006 01:46 PM

Depreman, PAN is certainly not in favor of "increasing poverty". Again, I refer to the rather deficient intellect of the post-colonial left, when they make such generalized claims. And PAN is the only party seeking elimination of corruption and state rentiership entitlements. The level of corruption in the Mexico City administration is phenomenal.

To combat corruption, you need market oriented policies at the micro and macro levels, underpinned by social-democratic support of the poor. Now tell this to AMLO and his army of ideologic paid goons engaged in protection rackets and power mongering.

Posted by: Karim | September 2, 2006 02:01 PM

KGB,

I see some heavies are in full attack mode. I have invited my friend Orellana to do the honors.

Should he not blind you with his brilliance
I will have no recourse but to squash your protoparanoia with my own little finger.

drtaxsacto,

Your blinding clarity is 100% A OK!

If your questions had ready answers we wouldn't be having any fun. Lopez is what in my teenage years we called "pandillero", a streetwise little thug who got his way with heavy fist pounding.

I remember one particular character from that long ago time called "El Chile". He had Lopez' charisma and ready to pounce, hair trigger temper. He wasn't so much admired but feared.

Lopez is "EL Chile" of Mexico's contemporary times. Many fools have joined his cause and to put but one example, Ricardo Monreal closely in cahoots with Lopez lost the PRD senate leadership to a rival.

On The Fence,

You can opine as far and wide as you like. Anything and everything you say is political, as far as this blog is concerned. This little comedy of an election should serve as a blueprint for all elections.

IFE is a PEOPLE'S confederation, paid by all Mexicans and run by ordinary mexican citizens. The tamper-proof safety valves in the process are a wonder of self-evident simplicity.

The electoral tribunal is savvy and has a full 10 years of electoral madness experience.

What we are doing here is an excercise in futile hypothesizing. The good people of TEPJF (Electoral Tribunal) are hard at work reviewing the election comings and goings and will soon give their final irrevocable opinion.

We can guess all we want about the grade the TEPJF will give this election or who they will name the winner. These Magnifficent 7 hold the report card and soon we will all know the result of their pointy perusal, Lopez, et al notwithstanding.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 02:04 PM

What happened with the Fox speech attempt is the sort of thing that happened recently in the Ukraine. What's going on in the Zocalo is exactly the same as in the Maidan. The big difference of course is the reaction of the major media in the West. It's like night and day.

I guess that when Soros is not financing the protesters, when the International Republican Institute is not organising the protesters, when money from the US Embassy is not paying for concerts and free food in the square, then it's not a grass-root democratic uprising but instead is an evil attempt to start a civil war.

Of course in one case the EU gave the election thumbs down while giving the one in Mexico a thumbs up. In the first case, the EU had already decided that if Yushchenko didn't win, it was fraud. The second observer mission was run by a close ally of the PAN party, one of the officials for the Spanish right wing party.

Observer missions so often see what they want to see. But still, the EU, the powerful West rules, and that's what matters. What's good for the Western powers is good for Ukraine, and for Mexico.

This is yet another example of the lack of principles, that "the ends justify the means", which is the last resort always of those who want to rule the world.

Posted by: R | September 2, 2006 02:29 PM

Peaceful PRD vs violent Mexican institutions? Is that the line we are going to see now?

Look at the images from last night-- thugs wearing masks attacking the police line. One guy even used a crude welding flame from an aerosol can to try to burn through the steel fence. Others were hurling big rocks.

Inside the chamber, the PRD legislators justified their clownish behavior in blocking the informe by condemning the police cordon around San Lazaro.

How could they talk with a straight face about this? Surely any reasonable person could see the reason for tight security. Surely any Mexican citizen seeing the violent demonstrators would think,"Thank God the police blocked those people from getting in and attacking the president."

Now, as for the fraud allegations-- In any election, anywhere, there will be mistakes. These only become a big issue when there is a very close election. Then the question becomes whether these were deliberate, orchestrated errors, in other words fraud, or just common slips and goofs. That is why Mexico has the tribunal. The magistrates look at the complaints from all parties, they examine the evidence and they determine if there was a widespread problem or just simple errors. The magistrates did their job and they ruled that there was no fraud. That is that. Case closed.

But Little Lopez and his mad followers have something else in mind. Their plan is for violent revolution. It is time for people who have been supporting him to wake up. Some Mexicans who voted for AMLO have already backed off, as can be seen in the recent polls, but what is needed now is for the decent, reasonable people in the PRD to come forward and reject the tactics of Little Lopez, the messiah who has proven that he is, IN FACT, a danger to Mexico.

Posted by: Goyo | September 2, 2006 02:48 PM

If the current situation in Mexico is analogous to the happenings in the Ukraine, what do they call the citizen-run independent electoral commision in the Ukraine?

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 02:52 PM

It´s easy to understand that the majority of the opinions expressed in this e-forum are from the point of view of the right or conservative people.

Most of the poor people in Mexico don´t have access to this electronic joint. And many who have, like me, don´t speak or write english very well.

That is one of the structural facts that silence the voice from bellow, from the "ignorants", the "blind followers", and a lot of prejudices expressed by the proto-fascist leaders of PAN.

I make a call for those in the USA and the rest of the world, to listen to the rational arguments, sustained on facts, not in mythical thinking.

The World Bank, ironically, shows in their reports about Mexico, a very different picture from that paninted by Foxy-land. Poverty has grown, and unemployment too.

And there is another importan point:
AMLO and its team, represent the only one viable path to a civilized democratic turn. The "ex-ante" coup comitted by the right, is feeding the real violents sector of the country: that radical left, like EPR, which don´t believe in a peacefull transition to igualitarian development in Mexico.

One of their thesis is: formal democracy finds its limits when the political-economic systems is betrayed by a redistributive turn. So, they say, guerrilla fighting is the only path.

That is not the vision of PRD and many others sectors in the left. We don´t want violence, we have struggle peacefully to develop our country with a sense of social justice and respect to the Constitution.

FeCal´s attitude supporting FOBAPROA, nepotism, the selling to USA of strategic basic resources and the reppressive system he always promotes, is a call to those radical sectors, "guerrilleros trasnochados".

AMLO does not represent those violent sectors.

Unfourtunately, FeCal does represent the violent sector in the right (neo-sinarquismo=neo-fascismo).

I wonder that this right-wing violent plan is backed by Bush, a real criminal war.

Our path is the peace and rational thinking. Is not that irrational feeling about "danger, danger, and danger" without argumentation.

Our weapon is peace, that deep feeling and attitude showed by Gandhi, Luther King and Mandela.


Posted by: Gorgojín | September 2, 2006 04:11 PM

to drtax...

Ask poor people if thei feel that mexican lawyers are with the richs or whith citizens.

Ask indigenous people is the law is equal to mestizos and to indigenous people.

The great democratic advanced experienced in Mexico, is debt mostly to PRD, and also to the now marginalized sector from PAN, the Maquio heiress.

Now Fox government has betrayed democracy.

If democratical elected governments are USA government lackeys, like that in Ucrania, they enjoy international recongition; if not, they are from "Imperio del mal", "Darth Vader followers... ja ja ja ja ja ja

Posted by: Gorgojín | September 2, 2006 04:19 PM

Gorgojín, your English is fine, but you can also express yourself in Spanish here, many posters speak it as well.

I wish I could say the same for your ideas. The unemployment rate in Mexico is quite low, between 3-4%. It is certainly better to be seeking work in Mexico than in that statist paradise of Venezuela, where unemployment is nearly 10%.

AMLO just promises more statism, which is just a mirage of false promises. People want to believe the state can give them everything, but it can't. Do you want to continue to have a protected monopoly sector that is run by a small group of unions and bureaucrats while the rest of the country produces real wealth in the formal private sector and the informal sector struggles because so many resources are sucked into the deadbeat public sector?

Posted by: RC | September 2, 2006 04:22 PM

Gorgojin, what do you smoke? I would really like to try some... You made a few comments above:

"Most of the poor people in Mexico don´t have access to this electronic joint. And many who have, like me, don´t speak or write english very well." Really? Internet access is as cheap as 5 Pesos per half hour, and internet cafe's are ubiquitous. Because of migration to the US, more poor than you might think speak English. Furthermore, most of the psuedo-intellectuals in places like the UNAM speak English because, when they are not burning American flags in front of the US embassy, they are inside the same embassy brownosing American officials for student visas and becas to American universities.
Go out and actually talk to the poor. You might learn a thing or two.

"AMLO and its team, represent the only one viable path to a civilized democratic turn" Really? Democratic? How would you qualify the recent gubernatorial election in Chiapas? Was that democratic? Were state resources used? Were votes bought by the PRD? Is illegal squatting on Reforma democratic? How do you define the word "democratic"? Does it mean that the man with the most votes wins, or, to you, does it mean that the PRD must always win or the election is not "democratic"?

"Unfourtunately, FeCal does represent the violent sector in the right" He does? Can you please name ONE example of violence from the right? And please do not blame drunk drivers on Reforma on the PAN. If I knew how to contact you, I would be almost willing to offer you money for a valid example, because I do not think you can. Has the PAN engaged in any of the following:

Threatening people in the DF who have politically incorrect bumper stickers on their cars?

Physcally attacked representatives of the News Media?

Illegally closed any streets to the general public?

Attacked the federal police with rocks, pipes, and aerosol can flamethrowers?

Called for the army to refuse orders?

Prohibited access to the zocalo to those who disagree politically with them.

Called any patriotic Mexicans "traitors" to democracy?

Do violent groups like the Atencos, the CGH, the EZLN, APPO, or the Francisco Villas support the PAN or the PRD? What does it say about an organization that has the support of groups such as these?

If, During AMLO's fantasy convention on Sept 16, do you think violence would occur if any PANistas showed up to exercise their right under article 39 to participate in the convention. If violence occurs, who do you think would instigate it?

Finally, you say "Our path is the peace and rational thinking" Is it? Never mind whether it was peaceful, do you think what happened last night was rational? Will that convince Mexicans to support AMLO, or will it convince them that he really is crazy.

Do you have a "rational" answer to the numbers in the latest Reforma poll, or do you believe that these are false?

Please respond, I am waiting anxiously for examples of PAN violence...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 04:45 PM

AMLO have to decide if he is going to be Revolutionary or Institutional, he can't be both otherwise he is the incarnation of the escense of the old party, "Institutional Revolutionary" = PRI! remember that Pri was founded by Caudillos of the Revolution refunding institutions destroying the old ones, Mexico deserves much better than that.

Posted by: A. Ramos | September 2, 2006 04:47 PM

Dear readers, if the election wasn't at least partially fraudulent then why do they resist and avoid a total recount at all costs? Mexico has a long and proud history of fraudulent elections, since before the PRI days. The PAN government of Fox and Calderon will spend more money in putting police in the field to keep Mexico "safe" than they would have spent on a real and complete recount. I mean the man had 8000 riot police at San Lazaro yesterday! Mexico is a truly great country, both in geography, history and most of all the people. But politics have always been rather tragic in the end for the people, from the conquest to the independence to the revolution to the present day. AMLO will destroy the economy. Calderon will sell it to US and foreign business men. Hard choice, isn't it. I am an American, a Latin American Studies graduate and lived in Mexico for 4 years. The country has an amazing cultural history. A damn shame that Wal-Mart is the number one single employer in Mexico. Wal-Mart does such a good job at protecting small town economiesin the US, I just have the feeling that they will do a knock-out job of preserving the essence of Mexican culture. My experience is that PANistas would sell thier cultural heritage to have a semblance of North American culture. This is the same type of self-hating, malinchista attitude that has kept Mexico down for literally centuries. If Calderon won, recount completely the votes, and then AMLO will be even more of a heel than he is now, case closed. But then why would they not recount, because they won, even if narrowly, by using age old and well developed election manipulating techniques. Another thing, who doesn't believe that the US and the Republican party hasn't put mountains of pressure on Fox and the PAN govenrment of Mexico to keep AMLO and any and all leftists out of power. They are having enough fun with Chavez, Evo and Castro, the latin american axis. I am sure the US would do ANYTHING to prevent that type of leftist leader on thier southern border. As for the fears of a Mexican revolution, well fat chance. If things keep up this way, AMLO and followers will be beaten,jailed and raped by the PFP like those folks in Atenco. All in all, the faith in the new mexican democracy is a joke. I love Mexico and I would love to see the Mexican people get a government that treats them well, for once. But after Atenco and this election, well its as if the PAN displaced the PRI just to play the same old dirty game. Even if the election isn't fixed, and the PAN is just too righteous and snotty to afford the Mexican people undisputable proof of thier victory, did they really have to take us back to the tactics of Tlatelolco in '68? Which reminds me, those riot troops are not robocops, some are good outstanding people. But many because of the age old culture of injustice and repression in Mexico and truly brutes without respect for human right at all. They make LA cop's beating of Rodney King look like a carousel ride. Whoever really won, the Mexican people have lost, because the "democratic revolution" was mutated into the same oldthing as always. It's a mexican tradition after all, from the independence to the revolution and beyond. A few notes- K. Vronna, if I remember correctly, the PT(Partido de Trabajo) was aligned with the PRI, not the PRD only 2 years ago. Goyo, I already mentioned my perception of the so called "Robocops, and I am sorry to say that I don't buy all the stuff that PANistas say about maintaining "law and order." It's all about politics and control. That's it. PAN and AMLO are playing a really big game to see who wins, just like the desafuero game, for those who remember, and it's all at the expense of the Mexican people. And I unfortunately agree with antiyunque and depraman being taking 40 years back and the influence of Republican election advisors, respectively. It's cute- Fox got elected with US businessmen money, Calderon with Republican advisors? Whats next? Last of all I would like to thank you, Mrs. Connolly on a thoughtful well written article that has sparked this interesting series of comments.
Viva el pueblo de Mexico! porque es el unico verdadero Mexico!

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 04:50 PM

Gorgo, you also made this rather fantastic complaint: "the selling to USA of strategic basic resources" By this I am going to go out on a limb and assume you are talking about oil. What exactly do you propose that Mexico do with the oil? Drink it?

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 04:54 PM

Tex Drifter, great, a few years of college and you are the one true expert on the subject. When you were in college, between protests and sit ins, did you find a time to take any basic economics courses? Because you say the following"
"A damn shame that Wal-Mart is the number one single employer in Mexico" Wal-Mart has close to a million employees in Mexico, who, unlike in the US are paid above the (admittedly crappy) prevailing wages. What would happen to them if Wal-Mart went away? I know you do not really care because money worries have probably never been a worry for you in your university cocoon, but they represent a million human beings that WE, not you in the US would have to deal with if they lost their jobs.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 04:55 PM

Gorgojin,

This is the kind of peace your brothers love to flaunt:

Quiero agradecer las infinitas respuestas y el apoyo total a esta nueva causa, he recibido mucha información del pinche delincuente de Victor Hernández así como muchas personas que se han ofrecido a rastrearlo y traernos fotos, incluso gente cercana a él que han optado por desertar de su causa, sin embargo piden dinero para tal material, lo siento no pagamos nada y si lo quieren donar adelante. Recordemos como actúa este pinche criminal cobarde de Victor Hernández al publicar información de quienes no piensan como él, Carlos Espejel, el webmaster de antipeje.net, periodistas, empresas, etc... Ahora le toca a él y le volvemos a recordar lo siguiente: Victor, te estamos buscando cabrón, cuídate las espaldas y piénsala 2 veces antes de confiar información a gente cercana a ti. Esto apenas comienza y ya nadie lo para........

Victor's sin: excersing his freedom of speech rights.

Get real, pal. You are dreaming if you think Lopez and amigos are really, really nice. They are nut cases with an attitude.

I would study greatness closer to home. Juarez was an ignorant shepherd that spoke no Spanish. Did he go about telling a sob story or did he get with the program and succeeded like few ever have in Mexican history. Juarez is my kind of juarista, not Lopitos and his cronies.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 04:57 PM

Gorgojín, I agree with RC, your English is as good as anybody's here on this blog. I also appreciate your point of view. You could be right in thinking that the violent elements will emerge if they see AMLO being treated unfairly.

Now, from my point of view, that is one of the great sins of Little Lopez, as I like to call him. Instead of taking the high road and accepting the ruling of the tribunal, he started crying fraud right away. He did not wait for the process set up by and run by the people to do its work. By impugning Mexican institutions, without much proof to back his attacks, he has undermined confidence in the system and led many people, like you, to think something was wrong with the election.

Had there been a practical way to do a recount, I would not have been against it-- "voto por voto." But the TEPJF looked at the evidence and decided it was not necessary. I can accept that and so should AMLO.

As for your attacks on PAN and Felipe Calderon, I am not necessarily a defender of all things they say or do or propose, but I do think their ideas make more sense than the leftist, statist ideas of the PRD. You say they would sell Mexico's "strategic basic resources." What would that be, oil? That is how you make money from a resource-- you sell it on the international market. How do you think Chavez got all that money to play with? Now maybe you mean they would sell PEMEX. Not necessarily a bad idea, but not something Calderon has ever proposed. What they have proposed is a very slight modification in the current law that would allow private companies from the United States, Brazil, Spain, France--- from all over, to come in and develop resources that are in the ground or offshore, but which PEMEX is unable to reach with its limited technology. This would be a great benefit to Mexico, as it has been, by the way, for Venezuela.

That is the problem with a guy like Lopez, he talks a good talk about helping the poor and defending la patria, but what he is really doing is exploiting the poor for his own political ambition. Of course, citizen Slim would also benefit, we must not forget him.

Posted by: Goyo | September 2, 2006 04:57 PM

Dear Jerry B,
I don't think you should be so polarized over these things. The right has been violent, in the name of law and order. I don't think the response at Atenco would be accepted within any civilized country as a good way of attaining law and order. There is no excuse for what the police did to those people. Perhaps the Atencos, as you call them, had leaders with violent means such as kidnapping, but most of the people involved were kids, with inocent if misguided sense of justice. There is no excuse for the police beating and raping and otherwise violating the civil and human rights of the citizenry. Some may say that all, PAN on the federal level, PRI on the state level, and PRD on the local level, were involved. But anyone who tries to convince me that it was not some kind of revenge for Fox not being able get his airport of questionably bought land in Atenco, well, they will have some trouble. It is politics, dirty and unjust as ever. And no political group in Mexico, not the PAN, PRD, PRI, PT, Convergencia, the Verdes, nobody is doing any good or better than the others as long as they play by the old PRI rules of repression, fear and control. And to emphasize again- PAN violence = Atenco. If only because they let it happen the way it did, and probably for a lot more reasons than just that. Mexico is not a country at war, and the geneva Convention stipulates better conditions for prisoners of war. The PFP response that day sounds more like a lesson in control learned at the School of the Americas mand that is just pathetic for a country like Mexico. What where the odds there? Like 10 PFP to each protester? not including helicoptors etc. I am not saying they shouldn't have done something, but what they let happen there is what has most knocked my faith in a democratic Mexico.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 05:11 PM

I wonder what potential investors and tourists think about Mexico if they happened to catch the coverage of the PRD stunt last night. It is getting more and more difficult to stay civil in speaking to people who make this country look like the home of a bunch of bombastic third-world sloganists. To anyone from the world reading this blog who may not have visited Mexico, please believe that the majority of Mexican people - from all economic levels - are dignified, modern people.

Let's annul the elections, but all the elections, including for Congress. Then let's vote again. Here's betting PAN wins by a landslide in every contest except those in the parts of the South that can't seem to find their way into the 21rst century.

And please no lectures on poverty. Many, many people in the North have fought their way out of poverty by working hard and insisting their kids get an education. Try it and see if it works for you.

Posted by: Greg | September 2, 2006 05:22 PM

Dear Mr. Jerry B,
I appreciate and read comments of all posting including yours. Thank you for reminding me not to make the mistake of mentioning personal information about myself that could be used to fuel attacks of less tranquil readers. Your comments were read and duly noted. While I have no need to explain my economic or educational circumstances to anyone, I will state that for I am familiar with basic economics and am aware that Mexico is not in the best of economic situations. Also I have never participated in Mexican politics, not sit-ins or otherwise, as that would be illegal for a foreigner. Mr. Jerry B, you know nothing of me except for what I have told you of myself. The rest you have inferred perhaps from your own stereotypes. I do not pretend to be an expert on any subject, but have studied Mexican politics at length from very different perspectives. As for the Walmart issue, I am not saying that Walmart and the jobs they bring are innately bad. In fact I agree qith the fact that Mexico would be worse off without jobs. But as student of Mexican culture in all i'ts richness, I believe that efforts should be made to adapt Walmart to Mexico, not adapt Mexico to Walmart. I feel the same way about Walmart in the US, they should adapt to and help communities. All I am saying is that the state of economic colonization in Mexico is slightly depressing. It is too bad that there are not more Mexican nationals proud of thier heritage with money willing to invest in thier own country. I understand that Mexico is old, and that it also must be new to survive, but thier is a balance in combining new with old that is important in preserving culture.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 05:38 PM

The south has always been controlled by different factors than the north. The history of Spanish domination in the north and south left entirely different legacies. Racism has been a bigger factor in hindering development of the south more than in the north, for example. If the south can't seem to find thier way to into the 21st century, it may be because they are just out of the 19th century in some parts. Perhaps thiers is a longer road out of poverty than that of the north.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 05:47 PM

The PRD Party accomplished something else last night. Up until now people have regarded the disruptions as the product of AMLO personally, but the PRD has now purchased the brand from him.

How many of the people in the demonstrations are new to the cause? Were the hooligans at the barricades long-term PRD supporters or opportunistic career agitators taking advantage of political cover?

Those PRD politicians escalated the situation last night. They set a precedent for physical if not violent confrontation. How sure are they that they can control the momentum? How sure are they that those crowds are completely theirs to control?

Whatever happens, the PRD will own the results.

Posted by: Greg | September 2, 2006 05:59 PM

"why do they resist and avoid a total recount at all costs?"

First, it isn't up to the PAN and secod, the law doesn't call for a total recount. Do you think just because AMLO demands one, the authorities should simply disgregard the law and grant it.

Second, you bash Wal-Mart, but compared to what? The subsistence farming utopia propogated by the anti-globalization movement.

Aren't Mexican employees of Wal-Mart at least subject to labor laws? If so, that beats the heck out of being in the informal economy where too many Latin Americans earn their living.

Posted by: RC | September 2, 2006 06:13 PM

Tex Drifter. The poor Atencos. Being that you are a white and bright American, perhaps you can help me out, because I do not quite get it. Did you see the images on television of what was going on that day in Atenco? Serious question, because I asked a friend of mine in DC if he had seen them, and he had not even heard of it; it must not have made the American news. Animals, and I do not know how else to describe them, sharpening machetes like savages on the street and then charging the (unarmed) state police. State policemen getting the living sh@t beaten out of them. Firebombs. If this had happened in the United States, the official response would have made the Tlatelolco massacre like like a garden party. So the PFP came in and restored order. They did it with a lot less brutality than I expected, considering what happened to their state brothers earlier. And, NO ONE has been charged with rape out of Atenco, and NO credible evidence of rape has been presented. Just the wild charges of a few European intellectual fellow travellers who should not have been there in the first place.

You also said this "It is too bad that there are not more Mexican nationals proud of thier heritage with money willing to invest in thier own country". I am sure Bush feels exactly the same way about Iraq. I could give you a VERY lengthy list of "Mexican nationals willing to invest", but you would probably slander them all as exploiters of the poor.

The one thing I agree with you on is the backwardness of basically everything south of the Queretaro border. The reasons for their backwardness are too long to enumerate here, but a good start would be stupid Spanish policies, and, in more modern times, a willingness to follow "maximum leaders" like AMLO right off the deep end. Maybe a solution to the election dilemma would be for the south to secede, take AMLO as president, and then go set up a socialist utopia in Central America. And leave the rest of us alone to join the 21st century.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 06:29 PM

RC,

Where I live there are small shops galore. Mom and pop stores where you can buy almost all basic groceries you need.

Everything is marked up, no mercy on us poor consumers. There are also WalMarts and Comercial Mexicanas. There, almost everything you can buy is at a lower price or at least suggested retail price.

The convenience shops (not 7 eleven or oxxo) are convenintly near but inconveniently expensive. I do almost all my shopping in the small stores although the price I pay is slightly higher. Why: I have to drive to get to the large supermarkets and I hate the background music, waiting in line and the so-called lower prices that actually aren't a sving anybody anything since you tend to buy nonessentials because you are after all paying less but actually spending more.

My point is that you have to use your head to make the right choices, not political correctness to save a few centavos.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 06:30 PM

Until 1990, you would have never known Tijuana was a few miles from the first world. Small nasty stores, unventilated theaters showing third rate films, "supermarkets" that were so "super" that everyone (and I mean everyone) with a BCC shopped in San Diego. Then, the economy opened up, American chains showed up (along with homegrown alternatives like OXXO and Gigante) and, suddenly, the little stores found themselves forced to actually compete. The supermarkets actually began to sell stuff people wanted. You could see a movie without going to San Diego, and with Spanish subtitles to boot, and popcorn that would not poison you. And on and on. And, today, I see exactly as many little mom and pop stores as 16 years ago, and, as Rodolfo mentions, they cost more but are clean and well stocked, and very few people go grocery shopping in San Diego anymore. What's the problem??

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 06:36 PM

This is true, Walmart does follow labor standards, I would assume. But why is it that Americans would freak if a Mexican or any foreign business was the number one employer and so many Mexicans think this is a perfectly fine state of affairs? i am not against Wal-Mart bringing jobs anywhere where they are needed, I just questions their sensibility to local contexts and thier track record in general. I just simply don't agree with Fox that all is better when perhaps 40% of Mexican businesses are of the books and the investments made in Mexico in his sexenio and before are mainly foreign companies that have no loyalty to the country and will most definitely take the majority of thier profits out. Where did Volkswagon go and why? I completely disagree with state run or subsidized industries like the horribly corrupt Pemex, but does that means all must be sold to outsiders? The whole point of import substitution and the like was to give Mexico and other smaller economies the chance to not be so controlled by larger ones. It failed pretty badly, admitedly, but does that mean that they go back to "selling" Mexico, so to speak, and set up the same relationships mexico had with the Spanish, French, English and or course Americans. Mexicans should just be happy that that make a decent wage while the majority of the money involved goes into foreign bank accounts? Most of the capital to make the money did come from foreign sources, true, but the big problem iI am poimnting out is that little is reinvested in the local economy. it is not a good system. AMLO would cause irreperable damage to Mexico's economy, but will Calderon really help Mexico to become a richer country? or just richer for the few with some trickle down for the masses? I hope he does something better than what has been happening in the last 15 years.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 06:39 PM

You're Rodolfo. Plus the pan y leches give credit to people from the neighborhood (sometimes) and are a nice place to hang out and visit. The only problem is they hate to throw anything away so people basically have to buy the last potato before they put out new ones.

Posted by: Greg | September 2, 2006 06:44 PM

Today, in Mexico, there is so much more consumer choice than a generation ago that it is not even funny. And that scares the bejeebers out of a lot of human sheep, and ticks off the "noble savage" lovers in the first world who do not think it Mexico is "authentically" poor and miserable anymore.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 06:44 PM

Tex Drifter, come on, if a Mexican company was the largest employer in the United States and paid above standard wages and complied with labor laws, Americans would yawn. Just like people in the UK yawn where, I believe, that Walmart is the biggest employer too.

And, again, please inform me WHERE in the PAN's program it calls for selling PEMEX to outsiders? I looked, but can't seem to find that page.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 06:53 PM

Dear Jerry B,
I was actually in Guatemala when I heard about Atenco, where it did make the news. And I would like to see the list of these national investors, not to slander, but simply to know. About Atenco, you are correct, in the US they would have crushed a movement like that of Atenco. The difference is thier would have been less human rights violations. If you expect me to believ that the PFP after seeing what they saw didn't commit some of those dastardly act, I just don't believe. They are human and revenge is very human. But unfirtunately as officers of the law, they have a duty to put these emotions aside and do thier duty without being too brutal and violating human right. Why do you think that few or none of those claims of violations of human rights have not been verified? Most of those folk unlucky enough to be detained in Atenco (not all of them rabble rouser, some were just unlucky people in Atenco that had nothing to do with the movement) have been pressured very heavily not to say anything, and maybe they will get off easy. Do you really trust the Mexican justice system? What if you had been in the wrong place at the wrong time? What if it had been a friend or loved one? The people in Atenco may well have deserved to be suqashed, as a movement, but even if they only beat one person in an excessive way, the PFP should be held responsible for the action, and only the actions beyond thier duty, just as those in Atenco or anywhere beating cops or anyone should. Or do you think that ends justify the means?
And, please, don't send Obrador to Central America!!! Even when Chiapas was the poorest state in Mexico, it was still no worse than Guatemala. We just got out of a civil war, don't need any trouble makers. But thanks for the thought...
And agreed, stupid Spanish policies and the personality cult have not helped at all, but I think the legacies of both of these are all to present still to be able to relax just yet.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 06:58 PM

Tex Drifter. In one sense, I have no doubt that "innocent" people got caught up in Atenco, it happens all the time. Up in San Diego recently they had a protest by "critical mass" (a bunch of a@@holes on bicycles)against "war" and a bunch of poor bike messengers got grabbed by the cops along with them. On the other hand, the PEFEPA came into Atenco 24 hours after this all started. Anyone with a brain had to know they were coming. So, how innocent are they people they grabbed...?

In the US, you are right, there would have been less human rights violations, because it would never been allowed to escalate that far. As soon as they got on the highway, enough cops or National Guard would have been deployed to outnumber them three to one, and everyone would have gone to jail, with hopefully only a few broken heads. But, having some experience with this, anyone that threw a gasoline bomb or used a machete on a cop would have been shot. And the American public would have had zero sympathy.

I criticize Fox heavily for this, ever since the airport debacle, he has looked weak, and people like the Atencos test his weakness. The only logical response to a movement like this is either destroy it utterly when it first appears, or just give in. Fox has chosen something in the middle, and everyone, the cops, the Atencos, and the common citizens who just want to drive on the highway, suffers.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 07:07 PM

I don't believe I directly linked PAN with the privarization of Pemex, did I? I just used Pemex as an example of a company that needs to be subsidized and mentioned the trend in Mexico in the last few years to sell, sell, sell to the highest bidder.
It is true that many Americans would yawn, but many would not. Do you not remember the exagerated Japanese scare of the '80s?
I do believe that some have opinions that run along party lines and they will argue those to the end, perhaps. Other don't follow parties or talking heads, and have opinions formed by seeing things from many sides and considering many other opinions. Insults and generalizations don't help credibility. Isn't that one of the reasons why folks don't like AMLO?

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 07:07 PM

PEMEX is not "subsidized", rather it is the "subsidizer" of the Mexican federal budget. As I mentioned in a post many many eons back (in July, I think), PEMEX was de facto privatized some 25 years ago during the Lopez Portillo paradise when it was basically taken over by the PEMEX Union. It is not that I, or others, am in favor of privatization, I just do not like the present owners. I would have no problem at all if PEMEX were left alone, just allow some bloody COMPETITION to it. If they can compete, more power to them. If they cannot, they deserve to die. As things stand now, our children are going to inherit a country that imports petroleum, not one that exports it.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 07:13 PM

Why so much talk about the PFP in Atenco when it was the state police under Wilfrido Robledo Madrid, a particularly unsavory character that really unleashed the party. The whole incident of May was a perfectly setup play to get a violent police reaction and bring our darling Comandante0 back into the public spotlight and further certain electoral ambitions of people who are out camping in the wilderness at this time.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 07:26 PM

Col. Hugo Chavez has just announced that he has uncovered evidence of a "complot" to make a coup against him. The United States, of course, is to blame. No evidence at all has been offered, but, then, Chavez has probably been following AMLO's lead to make wild charges and not bother with details like "evidence" or "proof".

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 07:28 PM

Always a pleasure to read Jerry B's comments here. I will only add one thing for Tex Drifter. You said:

"But why is it that Americans would freak if a Mexican or any foreign business was the number one employer and so many Mexicans think this is a perfectly fine state of affairs? "

In fact, many millions of Americans work for foreign companies today. You may have heard about the recent problems with the pipeline in Alaska. That was BP, America, the subsidiary of the British BP. One of the biggest employers in the Louisville, Kentucky area is Toyota, which, I believe, also has a plant in San Antonio.

It is true there was a brief scare in some circles about the Japanese buying things up in the 1980's. Then they ended up losing money on some of the deals and their economy stalled and everyone forgot about it.

Bottom line-- It would be better for Mexico to remain open to the world rather than turn back the clock and try to become a protectionist country.

One of the things that continues to hold Mexico back is the old attitude expressed by Porfirio Diaz, "Poor Mexico, so far from God and so close to the United States." A lot of Mexicans, in 1910, you may recall, said, "Poor Mexico, stuck with this guy Porfirio Diaz." But anyway, people in the north, closer yet to the United States, seem to have gotten over that silly notion and have profited. People in PRD-land still think the United States is going to buy up the country. I am always sadly amused by Mexicans who spout the simpleton rhetoric about the oil being "nuestro." They pay more for gasoline of inferior quality than most people in the world, they get no dividends from this public company and the company is close to bankrupt because the government has sucked out all its profits. There is oil sitting under Mexican soil that Pemex is unable to develop for lack of technology, yet the PRD would throw a fit if Calderon tried to open up the sector just a crack so that some private companies with the proper technology could come in and develop the resources in return for a share of the profits. Every country in the world, except North Korea and Mexico allow such ventures. But I am sure that argument would fall silent on the ears of Little Lopez as he plays with sub-comandante Marcos doll down in his tent in the Zocalo.

Posted by: Goyo | September 2, 2006 08:55 PM

Competition might help PEMEX, something has too. As is, a lot of money and opportunities are being lost. I don't doubt the Comandante set it up at all. After all, he was the one that urged his supporters to go and help those not so nice police kidnapping folks over in Atenco. I thought that both federal, state and municipal police were involved. But either way, if it was a set-up, they fell right into it. I know, somebody had to do something. But I still firmly believe that justice applies evenly to all on both sides of the law. If it doesn't it isn't justice is it? Oh, and when I said, "used Pemex as an example of a company that needs to be subsidized" I meant privatized, not subsidized, excuse the error. The coup news about Chavez shouldn't surprise anyone, substatiated or not. He was kidnapped and taken away for a few days in 2002 in an attempted coup that he also claimed that the US was behind. I don't believe Washington either accepted nor denied responsibility. But looking at Bush comments about Chavez, its not that far out there at all. Just consider the CIA's history in Latin America since the '54 Guatemala coup. They are not very nice stories. Mexico has actually been quite lucky in avoiding US interference, of that nature anyway.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 2, 2006 09:09 PM

Tex Drifter, I get your point about "privatized". However, as mentioned, PEMEX has already been de facto privatized. Why not at least transfer it to more competent owners. Or allow other companies to compete, like Brazil and Argentina (and the disgustingly poor, third world United States).

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 09:27 PM

K.Vronna,

It was a set up to make someone look bad and someone look good.

Atenquistas and the subMarcos revolution looked like chumps, Edomex governor Pena Nieto looked like president material. The ugly turned out to be Robledo, but he has no shame and loves the attention.

The chief of the federal police said that there was "coordinated" efforts between his office and the Edomex government.

The woeful lack of training of the on the ground police participants would serve the purpose of raising human rights issues awareness and also to provide more funds for better training.

The massive police display at yesterday's dramedy displays the results of a lesson learned.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 09:31 PM

The best part of yesterday is a comment in the NYT about Francisco Villas who threw rocks at the riot police "who ignored them". What tyranny!!!! What repression!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Jerry B | September 2, 2006 09:37 PM

JerryB,

Even the barricades were tip top, top of the line effective.

More power to our metal welders and their good deed for a grateful nation.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 2, 2006 09:46 PM

Stupid Spanish policies? Sure -had Mexico been settled by God-enlightened English, there would be no mestizos nowadays! Thank-you very much!

Posted by: Mexican (Real) | September 2, 2006 09:49 PM

I recommend reading "Fire and Blood" by TR Fehrenbach, a very good history of Mexico for a discussion of the Spanish mindset at the time of the Conquest. The Spanish were more "Roman" than the Romans, and this meant more concerned with the office than the policies of the office. What was said was "Spanish policies", not the Spanish themselves. Ironically it was the Church that brought the indigenous populace to a legal status and not the Colonial government.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 10:03 PM

Do you want SERIOUS historiography -whatever "Roman" policies may mean- ? Go ahead:

ALBERRO, Solange, Del gachupín al criollo, México, El Colegio de México, 2002,

BERTHE, Jean-Pierre, "Cambio técnico en un pueblo indio en el siglo XVI", en Estudios de historia de la Nueva España. De Sevilla a Manila, Guadalajara, Universidad de Guadalajara/CEMCA, 1994.

CHIMALPÁHIN, Domingo de San Antón Muñón Cuauhtlehuanitzin, Diario, prólogo y traducción de Rafael Tena, México, CONACULTA, col. "Cien de México", 2001.

CHUDOBA, Bohdan, Spain and the Empire, 1519-1643, Nueva York, Octagon Books, 1969.

DORANTES DE CARRANZA, Baltasar, Sumaria relación de las cosas de la Nueva España, México, Porrúa, 1987.

ELLIOTT, J.H., "Los reinados en España", Letras libres, mayo de 2005.

EISENSTADT, Samuel N., The Political Systems of Empires, Nueva York, Macmillan, 1963.

---, "Multiple Modernities", Daedalus, invierno de 2000; 129, 1.

IRIGOYEN LÓPEZ, Antonio y José Jesús García Hourcade, "Notas para un análisis de la problemática religiosa en la España de Felipe II", (Universidad Católica de Murcia-UCAM) http://www.hottopos.com/mirand12/antjos.htm

LOMNITZ, Cinna y Heriberta Castaños, "La ciencia y la Virgen de Guadalupe", México, CIDE, Istor, núm. 12, abril de 2003.

LORENZO CADARSO, Pedro Luis, "La correspondencia administrativa en el Estado absoluto castellano (SS. XVI-XVII)", Madrid, Tiempos modernos: revista electrónica de historia moderna, vol. II, núm. 5, http://www.tiemposmodernos.org/viewissue.php?id=5

MUÑOZ CAMARGO, Diego, Historia de Tlaxcala (paleografía, introducción, notas, apéndices e índices analíticos de Luis Reyes García, con la colaboración de Javier Lira Toledo), Tlaxcala, Gobierno del Estado de Tlaxcala/CIESAS/Universidad Autónoma de Tlaxcala, 1998.

PAZ, Octavio, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz o las trampas de la fe, Barcelona, Seix Barral, 1982.

SAHAGÚN, Fray Bernardino de, Historia general de las cosas de Nueva España, México, Porrúa, 1999.

SUÁREZ DE PERALTA, Juan, Tratado del descubrimiento de las Yndias y su conquista; edición, estudio preliminar y notas de Giorgio Perissinotto, Madrid, Alianza, 1990.

THOMAS, Hugh, El imperio español, Planeta, Barcelona, 2004.




Posted by: Mexican (Real) | September 2, 2006 10:13 PM

Maybe I didn't make myself clear on what Roman meant. The Spanish after being conquered by Rome took to the Roman system more doggedly than the Romans themselves. The Spanish mindset reflected this system for many centuries. When Mexico was conquered it was only natural that the Spanish bring their values and government with them, and it was a good match for the Mexica system. Not quite the same as other indigenous cultures, but also similar in concept.

I recommended TR Fehrenbach's book for this PARTICULAR topic because it goes into more depth on THIS piece of SPANISH history and culture than others, including many of the ones you list.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 10:31 PM

Probably this has nothing to do with the subject of this "blog", but just in case YOU know what you're talking about, here it goes:
"The imperial idea was not very popular among Charles' new subjects when he first arrived in Spain: "...The Spanish nobles and burghers showed little enthusiasm for the new dignity of their king [...] they followed the proverb Rex est Imperator in regno suo, by which the political skepticism of the late Middle Ages gave expression to their doubts about the usefulness of the traditional concept of the Imperium romanum". But Charles managed to impose his imperial programme stressing two central points: the kingdom of Spain had been chosen to lead all Christendom, to be the foundation, the defense and the strength of all other kingdoms, and his acceptance of the imperial dignity was only due to the God-given mission of accomplishing the defeat of the enemies of the Holy Catholic Faith. Nevertheless, as Chudoba remarks,

the sentiment against the institution of the Empire was to remain a lasting factor in Spanish public opinion. Contrary to Charles's own persuasions, the Spanish nation did not consider it necessary to build its political leadership on a foreign establishment, no matter how traditional. Not only burghers, but also the foremost noblemen, such as Pedro Fernández Velasco, and prominent scholars, such as Francisco de Vitoria, were the mouthpieces of this trend."

Posted by: Mexican (Real) | September 2, 2006 10:44 PM

"it goes into more depth on THIS piece of SPANISH history and culture than others, including many of the ones you list"

... as if you had read them!!!

By the way, this is your great author's very reliable -particularly, obviously very pro-Mexican- cv: "T.R. Fehrenbach is a native Texan, military historian and the author of several important books about the region..."

It might sound strange to you, but beware: you may even find a specialist when "blogging" -not all of us who happen to wander to see other people's thoughts are as illiterate as most of this lot. It's not THAT easy to say whatever you feel like and think you can get away with murder.

Posted by: | September 2, 2006 11:11 PM

"Stupid Spanish policies? Sure -had Mexico been settled by God-enlightened English, there would be no mestizos nowadays! Thank-you very much!"

If Mexico had been settled by the English, it would be richer than Texas.

And I´m not kidding.

Why would there be no mestizos?

Posted by: Darth Windsor | September 2, 2006 11:13 PM

Gosh! What a bore! DO read some history, please! Night-night.

Posted by: Mexican (Real) | September 2, 2006 11:16 PM

DO or DO NOT get a life

Posted by: Darth Windsor | September 2, 2006 11:20 PM

I wonder who put a burr under your saddle? Rather touchy type, no? I still stand by my recommendation and challenge you to impugn TR Fehrenbach's credentials and impartiality; please don't let your bias undermine your arguments. If you could point out the statements I made that you don't agree with, we can discuss them rationally. I don't claim to be a historian, but I have read and own several of the books on your list and others that are not. I suspect that there is a hidden political agenda behind your anger and insults that seems to be in fashion with some unhappy urban campers that are in the news.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 2, 2006 11:44 PM

Ceci, VERY GOOD ARTICLE!!!!
My congratulations to FOX for delivering the speech to all mexicans,
He fullfilled his commitment.
AMLO and his followers only keep from destroying the respect of the people that, at the beginning of campaign, really believed in them.
The Perredistas not only disrespected FOX,
THe Perredistas disrespected all Mexicans,
Because as FOX had the obligation to deliver his speech,
WE, the Mexicans had the right to listen to it.
Why are the perredistas taking decisions for most of us???
This is why,
FOX did real good in protecting with cops and barricades, the Lazaro legislative building.
What did AMLO expect? Mexico did not want AMLO and the delincuents that follow him to be able to enter and disrespect with screams the Congressional building.
Because, that is the only thing that AMLO knows what to do!!!
Scream complain,instigate, complain scream, instigate,
n-a n-a n-a n-a......,
Instead of working in how to create more jobs, instead of thinking in how to reduce Mexican poverty,
AMLO complains that he does not believe in the Mexican Institutions,
AMLO complains that there was fraud against his campaing,
First, that citizens were guilty of a complot,
then, that the President FOX was guilty of advising Mexicans with spots that AMLO was a danger to Mexico,
(Isn't that true?? We all see his methods)
then, AMLO complains that the Institutions (IFE AND TRIFE) are fraudulent,
but those Institutions that AMLO is critizicing and attacking are the Institutions responsible for issuing his political party and himself,
big huge salary checks.
IFE Pays him and PRD their monthly checks.
We have to see that Mexico since FOX entered the presidency,
has tremendously reduced,
and that affordardable HOUSING programs(INFONAVIT)constructed since 2000 to 2006 more houses for mexicans (millions)
See this chart that is recorded as accurate:
PRESIDENTS: DEBT (pib) AFF.HOUSING
MILLIONS
CONSTRUCTED
Luis Echeverría 22.4 10.4
José López Portillo 46.4 12.8
Miguel de la Madrid 46.1 15.2
Carlos Salinas Ernesto 18.3 18.6
Zedillo 12.4 21.5
Vicente Fox* 7.4 24.0

FOX IS NOT PERFECT< BUT for the last 36 years, FOX has been the best president!!!
We are waiting for Calderon's official election to be recognized,
Calderon would be even better!!!!!

Posted by: Kukiss | September 2, 2006 11:50 PM

COrrected:
Mexico has tremendously reduced his exterior debt since FOX entered the presidency.
ABOVE CHART SAYS IT ALL!!!!!

Posted by: Kukiss | September 2, 2006 11:53 PM

"Col. Hugo Chavez has just announced that he has uncovered evidence of a "complot" to make a coup against him."

He says that about once a week. He sees an American conspiracy under every rock and behind every tree. It is just a way to delegitimize his domestic opposition. No sound-minded Venezuelan could oppose Dios (Chavez) they must be American stooges.

Posted by: RC | September 3, 2006 12:25 AM

"But why is it that Americans would freak if a Mexican or any foreign business was the number one employer and so many Mexicans think this is a perfectly fine state of affairs? "

It is true that xenophobia is present in all countries and it is a lot easier to bash 1) business of all types and 2) foreigners, the populists get a double whammy when they can bash foreign businesses.

I'll put this way, I'd take a well-run foreign corporation than the a lethargic state-run parastic corporation anyday of the week.

Posted by: RC | September 3, 2006 12:28 AM

Hmmmm, Chavez must've learned this favorite dictator tactic (the enemy from without that threatens the mother/fatherland) from someone, I wonder from who? I can't imagine who, can someone enlighten me?

I'll second that observation, RC, big state run corporations (using the term corporation loosely) are an inefficient anachronism; a drain on the smaller and smaller budget that robs from the poor the funds they need to get a jump start back into economic dignity, IF they so choose. Unfortunately, these corporations are always the plums of the politicians as they control big money; graft is easy to cover due to the complexity of their outdated systems and politically appointed administrators that know nothing of business management. Doesn't matter, really, even the best of business administrators would be hard pressed to do anything with these obsolete giants. Small and connected, best for all; we're proving it right here.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 3, 2006 12:55 AM

No matter what your nationality is, when something in your country goes bad, you have basically two choices. The first is harder, and involves anylizing the problem, proposing solutions, making needed (and potentially dificult) changes, and following through on them. Examples are the Japanese property bubble and collapse of the 90's which caused so much pain it is not funny, but the Japanese economy is, finally, getting back on track, or the structural adjustments that New Zealand underwent in the 80's, transforming a backward, closed economy into a world class competitive (and rich) economy.

The other option is to deny that their is a problem in the first place, and if it reaches the point that denial is no longer feasible, blame it on someone, preferably big bad capitalists, foreigners, or ideally a combination thereof. Blaming politicians is also acceptable. This option doesn't solve anything, but it does make everybody feel better, for a time. Examples outside of Mexico include the City of San Diego, whose leadership (before the mayor had to resign) basically blamed the news media for reporting on the fact that the city was bankrupt. (If you ignore a problem, maybe it will go away?), the Prime Minister of Malaysia who blamed "jews" when his currency took a dive, the arabs who blame "jews" for everything, the Greeks, who like to blame everything on the CIA, ditto hugito chavez, and, finally, Democrats in the US who like to pretend that all is just fine with Social Security. In Mexico, of course, we have AMLO, who blames EVERYTHING that goes wrong on "enemies", some of whom may be foreign.

Funny how the countries that choose the first option tend to do better than those that choose the better. It is probably the Jews' fault.


Posted by: Jerry B | September 3, 2006 01:16 AM

I heard today that the PRD plans to make a sequel of yesterday's events in December when its time for Calderon to be inaguarated (if he's certified as Prez-elect on Wednesday). That will be interesting to see to say the least.

But now I ask you fellow bloggers of mine a question: considering yesterday's events and the weak response by Fox to do anything truly assertive about the matter, will the military parade still go on for the Sept. 16 festivities with the Zocalo still occupied?

As much as I oppose everything AMLO has done since the election and generally support Fox, I think that he bears a great deal of responsibility for whats going on now. I mean, i dont believe for a second allegations that he orchestrated fraud or anything like that, what i mean is that he didnt really ACT on too many things as president. It seems as if every night he was off with Marta going to visit another foreign country while teacher strikes go on in Oaxaca, plantones continue indefintely in DF, and as his proposals are shot down. I think he's a good guy, just that he missed a golden opportunity to do more (though granted the PRI-PRD alliance blocked many initiatives, but couldnt there have been more done on his part?)

Once again, lets pray that with the obscenities from yesterday that we've reached and passed the climax of this electoral dispute and that cooler heads - on all fronts - prevail in the coming days and years.

Posted by: Beco | September 3, 2006 01:44 AM

You guys choose the exact days that I'm away to give your best rants. I'm feeling hurt...

Let's see, the culture thing first: Tex Drifter, Wal-Mart does adapt to Mexican culture, that's why it has been so successful. Foreign companies like Wal-Mart, McDonald's, Nissan, Microsoft adapt to each countries' cultures and needs. Two examples of companies who didn't: Carrefour and Kmart. Both are now gone from Mexico. They just never got Mexican culture. Yes, most of their capital goes abroad and they have no loyalty to their guest country but that doesn't imply that they don't adapt. You have no idea how hard this companies work to adapt their products and their systems to gain a spot in a certain market. Wal-Mart has to sell products that are chracteristic of Mexican culture, they have no choice. Imposing a foreing culture would be selling bagels instead of tortillas or bolillos. It gets very specific in certain cases like in the jewish neighbourhoods of Mexico city, Wal-Mart sells microwave kosher tacos for the jewish community, something that you just don't see in other parts of Mexico. For example, Carrefour used to sell only organic fruits and vegetables, a very trendy thing in Europe. The thing is that those products are a little bit more expensive than the transgenic fruits that most supermarkets have and therefore, a little out of reach for most Mexicans. They just couldn't compete with Gigante, Comercial Mexicana and Wal-Mart and eventually had to leave the country. Nissa designed their Platina specially for the Latin American market since it is a cheap, durable car for big cities like Mexico city. McDonald's sells a sandwich made of carne al pastor among other thing that take Mexican gastronomy to fit in better with the market.

And what has changed in Mexican culture since people started shoping in large supermarkets instead of tiny grocery stores? Nothing really. I'll go even further. Culture, for me, is something stronger and deeper than the simple fact that you eat or not a hamburger or shop or not in a Wal-Mart. It is about sharing a common history, traditions and values and that hasn't changed much since tha times of my great-grand mother.

"Stupid Spanish policies? Sure -had Mexico been settled by God-enlightened English, there would be no mestizos nowadays! Thank-you very much!"

I agree, there would be no mestizos since the early british puritans that came to America had no intentions of relating themselves to the indians, but indeed, we would have grown a lot more, both political and economically with a model like the one stablished by the British monarchy. While Spaniards were sent by the king to stablish a representation of the power of the Spanish crown in Mexico, the British left the foreign settlements to private investors. Brits came to America to invest while Spaniards came here to exploit, that's a very crucial difference. Spaniards came here with an aristocratic kind of government. Very lineal depending always on orders from the king. The colonies in British America based their governments on merit, a tradition that later made it easy for democracy to flourish.

For further information, read México frente a EUA by Lorenzo Meyer and Zoraida Vázquez. It is the best book to understand the differences and the complex relations between these two countries.

And last... Huga Chávez is such a joke. He rants all the time about how anti-american, anti-imperialist Venezuela is. Yet it is funny to observe that even more boats of PDVSA arrive to the USA than before. He's all talk, but he obediently shuts up when the subject is venezuelan oil shipments to the US. He's not dumb and he knows that he is nothing without his mayor oil buyer, the US.

Posted by: bunburina | September 3, 2006 03:12 AM

Hello comrades!

After a long leave of absence I decided to come back to this ever-impartial, ever-constructive discussion blog (notice the sarcasm) to check what you guys were up to.
I see some new faces have done their part to enrich the debate with the all familiar hotwinded arguments of recurrent veteran bloggers.

I guess the proper thing to do should be to restate my position:

I am not amused nor convinced by the Electoral Tribunal's (TEPJF) decision.

The electoral acts clearly demonstrate that there were arithmetic inconsistencies in 72,197 polling places.

Of the above, the TEPJF decided to conduct a recount in only 11,839 polling places. If I might say so, the opening of these ballot packages undermined the credibility of the Federal Electoral Institute and its actions during the distrital recount of the 5th of July.

1. In 81% of the 11,700 polling places (aprox. 100 packages were not opened), the results were modified. Calderón lost 13,335 votes and AMLO lost only 47 votes.

2. 65% of these same packages presented the following irregularities (of which the magistrate or judge in charge took notice and registered them upon a new act):
a) In 3,873 packages spurious ballots were found. By spurious ballots we refer to a number of deposited ballots + unused ballots, superior to the orginal number of ballots assigned to the "funcionarios de casilla" or to the number of electors registered in that "casilla" + 10. The total amount of spurious ballots adds up to 58,056 votes.

b) In 3,659 packages, the magistrates noticed that ballots had been extracted. The amount of ballots extracted adds up to 61,688 votes.

According to the "Ley General del Sistema de Medios de Impugnación en Materia Electoral", article 75, fraction k), all of the "casillas" above should have been anulled since no one can know for sure what was the original vote intention of the electors of these particular polling places.

The TEPJF decided to apply a restricted interpretation of the law which RECOGNIZES THE PRESENCE OF FRAUD but decides to overlook it to avoid "altering the voting intention of the valid votes".

What does this argument mean?
For example:
If a "casilla" has 25 spurious ballots but the difference between Calderón and López-Obrador amounts 50 votes in this "casilla", then the Tribunal considers that the fraud comitted isn't significant enough to alter the result so it decides not to anull this particular "casilla". Therefore, the results remain, mainly, unaltered.

Nevertheless, when all these recognized fraudulent votes are added up they amounted a total of 119,744. This is almost half the difference between the leading presidential candidates.

If the evidence of spurious and extracted ballots found in the recount of the small, 9% sample of the packages is projected to the total 130,000 "casillas", a total of 1,500,000 fraudulent votes may have been found.

This amount is, by far, superior to the 239,000 difference between Calderón and López Obrador.

Regrettably, we will never know what happened in the rest of the "casillas" since the TEPJF refused to do a complete recount. The facts stated above leave Calderón supporters with an, at all glances, clouted and phyrric victory. On the other hand, those of us who demanded transparency in the process and its results are left with very serious doubts.

My statements above (and in previous interventions dating back to the 6th of July) underline that the anullment of the electoral process is the only factible alternative to distend the irrational confrontation between two very legitimate political ideologies. On the whole, the Electoral Process of July 2, 2006, was characterized by a high amount of irregularities before, during, and after the event that clout the whole picture.

Unfortunately, I just received word that the majority of the magistrates oppose anullment by abstract causes. However, I can assure you of one thing: IT WILL NOT BE AN UNANIMOUS DECISION.


Attending other related matters. The first action of the LX'th legislature gave us a sweet, small sample of what the next 3 years in Congress are going to be like. All the right wing parties (PAN-PRI-PVEM-PANAL) allied to impose an "ad hoc" reform to the "Ley Orgánica del Congreso" with the object of prohibiting the PRD fraction to answer President Fox's State of the Union adress.
By law, the majority fraction (PAN) should preside the Political Coordination Junta while the first minority (PRD) should be in charge of the "Mesa Directiva" (which, among other responabilities, answers the State of the Union address). The right-wing "madruguete" reform changed the law so that the PRI (second minority) would preside the Political Coordination Junta and the PAN would take over the "Mesa Directiva". Notice: in the last 6 years, the PRD has never presided the "Mesa Directiva".
I say, ¡Nice move, you hipocrits!
In the media you state and state that you want to build bridges of dialogue between the conflicting parties; that it is your intention to build a coalition government, to sum up the will of all Mexicans (even those who didn´t vote for you). In reality, you just couldn´t wait to blow up the last possibility of an institutional dialogue. Afterwards, all of you were amazed to find out that the PRD would not let the President speak from the tribune.

More than a few intellectuals stated that after the great advances achieved by the left we should have stayed put. That we shouldn´t have raised so much noise.
What good have those achievements done for us!
Despite the fact that our movement concentrated a third part of the voting intentions; despite the fact that we are virtually tied with the "leading" presidential candidate, in reality, our participation in the Executive Power was cancelled and, in the current institutional arrangement, the "de facto" alliance between the 4 right wing parties nullifies our participation in Congress.
It is no small thing. What I'm talking about is that the aspirations of millions of mexicans for change have been virtually erased. This is no democratic behavior.
It has been repeated as a mantra that "in democracies, a single vote makes the difference".
This statement demonstrates a severe lack of knowledge of political science. Euoropean Illustration theorists, American Founding Fathers, along with French Revolutionaries all were aware of the dangers inherent in the "tiranny of the majorities". We are a strong movement, with a very significant presence in Mexican society and Congress. The current institutional arrangement permits the cancelation of our rights to be represented in government.
This is absolutely unacceptable.
It is blatantly clear that the presidential, one-party regime created by Plutarco Elías Calles in 1928 has become anachronic, obsolete, and extremely fragile. I have been saying this for the past 4 years (I've even mentioned this in a previous intervention on this blog), it is imperative to consolidate a political reform that establishes a semi-parliamentary regime. Such a regime would have been the best safeguard to avoid today's current confrontation (for example: look at Germany after Maerkel and Schroeder were forced to split goverment responsabilities in half after a close election).
The Reform of the State was Vicente Fox's main campaign promise. Clearly, his promise has been unfulfilled.
The National Democratic Convention (CND)has this purpose. To make a State Reform proposition for the consideration of the citizenry of Mexico. As long as all institutional channels are blocked, the CND will constitute the left-wing's only channel of political representation.
Take notice. Today you laugh at the possibility of establishing the CND. Tomorrow, the Executive Power and the CND will be negotiating, as equals, the future of this country.
Let us keep the channels of dialogue open.
Let us consolidate the much needed political reforms.
If you want political stability, don't leave the left-wing out of the negotiating table.

¡No a la imposición!
¡Alto al Estado represivo!
¡No a la violencia!
¡Sí a la resistencia civil pacífica!
¡No al discurso unidireccional!
¡Sí a la pluralidad!
¡Adelante con la Reforma del Estado!
¡Viva la Convención Nacional Democrática!

Posted by: fco. | September 3, 2006 04:51 AM

fco, unas preguntas:

1 Why has registration for the CND only been established in Mexico City. Do Chilangos represent the only Mexicans qualified to participate? Is that what AMLO means by democracy? Or does AMLO not really want northerners involved?

2 If I and say 100,000 more northerners showed up at the CND and proposed Felipe as "presidente legitimo", would we provoke serious debate or would we be met with intolerant violence?

3 If there was fraud, why have there been exactly zero major demonstrations against it outside of chilangolandia? Again, are chilangos the only Mexicans who noticed the fraud? Or is it that the rest of us noticed that there was no fraud?

4 Considering what has happened in the last 2 months, how do you think the 50 million Mexicans who live in the north will react to this CND?

5 The Kicker. How is AMLO going to have his CND when the army is almost certainly going to clear out the Zocalo in the early morning hours of Sept 16? Where is it going to be held?

Posted by: Jerry B | September 3, 2006 05:46 AM

Mexican(Real), 10:44 PM entry

This site is about election madness but history lessons of any kind are welcome. History is a way of understanding our mistakes through humanistic discourse.

The July 2 election has turned Mexican politics into something fun for the first time since I can't remember when.

Lopez has raised some legitimate issues, primarily the social disparity of our country's underclass. His method was the crassest possible and least likely to get him elected. Polarization is a legitimate position in the field of college campus rethorics but as an election campaign ploy, it stinks. You lose elections in a country like Mexico by painting reality in manichean class war campaign tactics. We've had enough of wacky leftist turmoil, our disdain towards political instability is such to last a century.

Perdedistas WILL stand down and act like democrats and adults. Fox-Calderon will assume "responsability" and act as necessary. Mexico will applaud, this childishness has to have an end, pronto.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 3, 2006 06:03 AM

Native Americans of several different tribes have a prophecy."In the seventh generation we shall rise again" This is the seventh generation and the Mexican people are really actually Natives. The protests in America when the gov't tried to make it a felony to not have a green card and what is happening now fulfill this prophecy. For this reason I support the people in the streets in Mexico.

Posted by: virginia in Louisville,KY | September 3, 2006 11:05 AM

Rodolfo: It is certain that the PRD will stand down, but HOW do they get there from here. By taking the center stage away from AMLO, PRD, the party itself, has become the agent for civil disobedience. What's the exit strategy from their absolute opposition to recognition of TRIFE's (probable) decision?

It is possible to put some blame for this situation on the Federal government's failure to deal with the Zapatista's. If you remember, those fight-to-the-death revolutionaries attacked a post office and a couple other government buildings in their first major offensive. As soon as the army approached they withdrew in very good and very rapid order to the jungle and the microphones. There was no second offensive. But neither was there a decisive defeat that would have established rules for social and political opposition. The army contained but did not destroy the "revolution" thus establishing a precedent for tolerance of such acts. Similarly, the protestors/revolutionaries in Oaxaca are allowed to break laws left and right with impunity. Why shouldn't the PRD think that they can take their cause to extreme and illegal lengths? Who is going to stop them?

The damage done to Mexico's prestige by PRD's thuggish behavior in Congress is immeasurable. Right now around the world, the public face of Mexico is that of a politician standing on the podium of Mexico's Congress screaming into a microphone while his compatriots wave insipid signs in the air. That is our new image to investors and tourists.

Time to enforce the law. Consider it an intervention. The PRD has many rational members. On their behalf and for the good of the country, the Federal government must restore order and strictly limit the PRD to those activities that are within the law.

Posted by: Greg | September 3, 2006 11:26 AM

Virginia: How about the Mexicans living in the North of Mexico who have faced just as great adversity in their history and who undeniably and overwhelmingly voted for PAN, a party representing strategies that have been reponsible for their success relative to the South? Do you consider them to be somehow inauthentic Mexicans because they have through hard work and good decision-making improved their communities and lives? Your comments remind me of people who tell me that when they visit Mexico, they want to see the "real" Mexico, by which they mean the revolution era Mexico they see in uninformed Hollywood movies.

Calderon won the election. Slightly more people voted for him than AMLO. There was no "vast right-wing conspiracy" and people who believe so just do not acknowledge reality because it 1) interferes with their fantasy and 2) gives them a gratifying feeling of being oppressed, which no liberal can do without. Those people who voted for the winner have the right to see their decision upheld by the government using whatever force that is necessary to fulfil their responsibilities to the Constitution.

Posted by: Greg | September 3, 2006 11:44 AM

Greg, in the "real" Mexico, everyone rides their burros to a liquor store for a gallon of tequila, and then takes it to a cactus, which they sit under as they drink it. Any other types of Mexicans are frauds.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 3, 2006 12:05 PM

virginia,

Your spacey take on Mexican "native" electoral madness is a welcome relief in the midst of oh so serious right and left political mumbo jumbo.

I have a bet to make with you. Find ten Mexican Native Indians in the Reforma and Zocalo sit-ins and I'll pay you 10 dollars.

This is not a Motherland issue, we got ourselves into. It's more like I lost the game, I'm sequestering the ball, the playing field and your mother and father too with all your brothers and sisters. I will set the new rules because I say so and the referees and judges and all the laws will be purified, I say so.

You will follow my dictates because I embrace Ghandi, Martin Luther King. I am Christ incarnate, your little rooster who will not be plucked, your brave and honest indestructible ray of hope.

Virginia, come to think of it, this electoral madness is about one sore loser space cadet and his wily fellow spaceballs who will not relent.

You are welcome to join the fun, this electoral madness of Mexico.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 3, 2006 12:09 PM

Greg,

Go to this site, register and look for the political forums.

http://arielorellana.net/forums/index.php

Posted by: rodolfo | September 3, 2006 12:17 PM

JerryB: Exactly. Looking back on this long discussion, it is apparent that many pro-AMLO protestors from the States are motivated by their inaccurate knowledge of Mexico. They should visit Monterrey or another city in the North and see how we truly live and what we are capable of. Their belief seems to be that Mexicans need some kind of messiah to show the way out of darkness. Mexico and Mexicans do not need a paternalistic sloganeer - we need more capital investment and to take much better advantage of NAFTA than we have done to date.

The surprise of the century for many people in the world is just how powerful Mexico will become when it finally cleans up the beaurocracy, gets much better technology transfer from the maquilas, and gets investment financing to new businesses.

If you think that Mexicans need anything other than themselves operating at their full potential to be successful, you do not know Mexicans.

Posted by: Greg | September 3, 2006 12:33 PM

A couple have said what is the harm in doing a full recount or doing a new election. Civil institutions need some predictability. Without that, the system falls to anarchy and ultimately to caudillos. The IFE and all of the other systems of this election established it at the highest level of international standards. I agree with the comment that were a new election to be held - the PAN would pick up substantially in both the presidential vote and the congress. But the point is that were the Mexican people to agree to that and AMLO still lost, does anyone think he would not throw up some more kultursmog about how this or that was not perfect?

The challenge for the Mexican people is to simultaneously solve a couple of problems. First, those who do not support AMLO (the 70% at least) need to figure out how to defuse a demagogue without allowing him the chance to exercise any additional illegitimate authority. Second, those committed to continuing the progress that Mexico has experienced over the last decade or more need to continue to work on broadening the base of the economy. When one looks at the distribution of income in the country - great progress has been made - but more needs to be done. But economic growth has been slower than it should be. Further economic liberalization will be the right path but it will take some careful thinking and action. The old systems will not work - either political or economic.

Posted by: Drtaxsacto | September 3, 2006 01:59 PM

Según el Instructivo para los Responsables Políticos y Operativos de la "Convención Nacional Democrática" a que convocó López Obrador, la meta es llenar el Zócalo con un millón 137 mil delegados, de los cuales el 30 por ciento vendrán del Distrito Federal; una cantidad similar de Hidalgo, Tlaxcala, Puebla y Morelos; y el resto de los estados de Michoacán, Guerrero, Tabasco, Chiapas, Veracruz y Oaxaca.


So much for you Norteños getting any representation in the Peje Republic; it's all your fault for not supporting AMLO. Not even Zacatecas gets in on the fun; Amalia, such a lukewarm response to the movement has cost your state's representation.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 3, 2006 04:26 PM

Dr.Taxsacto,

AMLO's power base is the cachet he has given to PRD "Project for our Nation" campaign platform.
He is no longer an elected official of any sort. He has no cushy senate or congress seat and I doubt he will be Marcelo Ebrard's employee.

His future is a Maximato or oblivion.

Monreal's loss of his anticipated PRD senate leadership and AMLO's candidate for lower house leadership also failed an a former banished leader was elected by PRD
congress members. He surrounded himself with hardline former PRI Salinista bigwigs and PRD members with much more seniority were not amused.

It is said that when TEPJF announces the election winner PRD leaders will divest themselves of the messiah and get to the business for which they were elected. In Mexico politicians with no office are has beens that have to wait in the shadows until the next hueso (government job)is thrown their way.

Lopez only hope of relevance is that his dog and pony show has indefinite staying power. Plantonistas are dwindling after a little more than a month of plantonista people power. People, after all have to have a life, not fancy children's tales of a shining city on a hill.

PRD nomenclature will have use of him as is politically expedient, then he'll be sent packing to his austere republicanist
whatever.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 3, 2006 05:41 PM

While it is pathetic that the left has no one better to rally behind other than AMLO, thier needs and wants need to be addressed not dismissed. I get a kind of righteous feeling from the PAN, and perhaps duly so. But, once Obrador is discredited and taken care of, that leaves a lot of disillusioned leftist, not all bad folks with bad intentions, if many misguided. Mexico seems divided. Whether it be the differences between the north and south, or left and right, I have heard no one making any type of inclusionary or conciliatory speech. Though I do seem to remember having read some kind of statement by Calderon in Cuernavaca the other day... It is too little too late, perhaps. AMLO does seem intent on taking this to the worst extreme.
The bureacracy is a unnecesary and harmful legacy (from the Spanish, I just love to say that, gets comments, but it is true. the sad part being that that type of Spanish bureacracy is in most of Latin America, but the Spanish long ago found it cumbersome and did away with it. Note- not blaming Spanish or colonizers, not claiming that other colonizer or native prehispanic culture would have done any better, but the Spanish roots are undeniable, if sustained by later non-Spanish governments. Sorry for the aside, some of us just talk and write too much.) that only is holding Mexico back, agreed.
My question is What can be done to unite for the common good of all (y no quiero decir "por el bien de todos", ;) ) groups that are now at each others throats? or will these shenanigans continue for decades to come? The PAN may play cleaner than than AMLO, but politics is politics and they play thier cards as they are able. Lots of games and PR battles anyway, which frankly, my humble viewpoint, don't seem to help anyone much.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 06:39 PM

Tex Drifter,
Having been a Cárdenas supporter in '88 & '94, lost in 2000, I voted this time for Alternativa because it represents a much more modern and practical approach to the problems of socio-economic inequality. I didn't go for the Coalition because it had been hijacked by the ex-priista gangsters that rigged the election fraud in '88.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 3, 2006 06:50 PM

Tex Drifter, just because a leftist has "good intentions" does not make her correct, righteous, or progressive.

"good intentions" are a dime a dozen. Go and speak to the Islamist suicider that is about to blow up 30 children in a Baghdad marketplace, and you will find loads of good intentions and rationalizations as to why his act is correct.

For the intellectually deficient post-colonial left to hark that their "good intentions" is what makes them fit to rule undemocratically or democratically, is the gravest insult to the intelligence of the Mexican people.

The road to totalitarianism was paved with the good intentions of the idiot idealists, utopianists, and socialist- nationalists of the intellectually deficient left.

Posted by: Karim | September 3, 2006 06:59 PM

Yeah, I view the socio-economic inequality as the root of a lot of present divisions. I think it is indisputable that the man, or woman, on the street, or in the country, in Mexico want the best for Mexico and Mexicans. I agree with Greg that Mexicans would have little problem getting the economy together without the bureacracy hang-up and with more capital. Mexico is one of the most resource rich and biodiverse countries on Earth. And I think the majority of the problem since the conquest has been bad management. The socioeconomic inequality from even before the post conquest caste system (the Aztecs weren't really egalitarians) to more modern marginalization of indigenous and poor communities hasn't helped either. But some of these problems are so old and deep seated (we are talking hundreds of years in some cases) then how can these problems be tackled in a short period of time to turn things around?

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 07:11 PM

Karim, are you implying that idiots with good intention should not have the right to participate in government? that only the intelectuals should be listened to seriously? and please don't forget the right side of totalitarianism, a grand nationalist and idealist ol Hitler was after all, and how he hated the left. And I don't think anyone truly considers the "good intentions" of suicide bombers as such even with the rationalizations that they might have used. I think my point is that Mexico has a rather large left, and until the right and left ( however idiotic and uninformed or intelectual and enlightened on either side) begin an inclusive dialogue without polarization and partisanship, thing are likely to continue as they are. And I do not think anyone is happy with how things are now... Democracies are democracies because they include all, idiots and the well informed. Excluding and defeating the left may give the right the power to get some good work done, but bad feeling will be maintained. Just don't think that helps anyne in the long run. It is funny, that it is said, and seen time and time again anywhere in the world, that the right always claims that the left are idiots, and the left always claims the right are just plain evil.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 07:27 PM

Tex Drifter: I believe one thing you are missing in your analisis here is knowledge of PAN's history and what their movement is all about. PAN was an oppossition party when AMLO was a little boy and Cardenas was going to University. They have a long history of Civil Pacific Resistance and the one thing they never did was to call for violence, directly or indirectly.
Accion Nacional's Social Movement has worked well, their social growth has been steady for the last 30 years and their contributions to Mexican Democracy are undeniable.
99% of PAN Candidates have all come from PAN and have never been in PRI. PAN has got a tradition of creating their own brand of politicians. Fernando Canales,Francisco Barrio, Fernandez De Cevallos, Mena, Felipe Calderon, Cesar Nava, and all the other members of PAN came mostly from within the party, they made their careers there.
Lately PAN has been opening the doors to people from other parties, but they represent a tiny minority.
PAN's social growth has been at a grass rooth level, contrary to what many people in the USA and Europe believe, they have been governing many communities for many years and their movements are widely popular in many areas of the country. They efficiency at adminitrating well and providing good city services has made PAN politicians popular in most urban areas of the country. In fact, PAN governs most of big and small cities in the country. PAN's social experiment has worked, contrary to what many people in the left have tried to make us all believe all the time, that they will favor religious attitudes and the big business.
PRD presumes giving women more opportunities to participate in Government and same as PRI, they actually assigned cuotas of participation in their parties, a humilliating practice. PAN has no quotas for women because they have never been necessary for PAN and they have twice as many women in their CEN, Representative bodies and Governments they hold, true, they don't have one Rosario Robles or Amalia yet, but they many in all ranks, pretty soon we will have a PAN women governing state, but that isn't up to a party to decide, that happens in democracy one way or another.
Many cities in North Mexico vote for PAN consistently, San Nicolas in Nuevo Leon, has been governed by PAN for more than 30 years already.
Their's is not a dogmatic movement supported by a bunch of estrident intellectuals, artists and academics from UNAM and UAM and other publicly funded universities. PAN has got much support from many graduates at ITESM, they do have a strong presence there and in UDEM and other private universities, but it happens because those universities are completely free, they are not controlled by a bunch of radical communist and trotskists and stalinists professors like the UNAM (believe it or not, stalinism, trotskism and communism still exist in Latin America, sadly for us, there are many dogmatical people teaching it).

I guess my point here is that there is a reason why PAN won in 2000 with Fox and why they won 42 percent of seats in congress and senate in 2006, and the Presidency too.

And it is because, despite all the demagogic claims from AMLO that he represents the "people", PAN is a vibrant social movement that will continue to grow and will continue to write the history of Mexico in the next years.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 3, 2006 07:57 PM

Boy, one steps away for a weekend and THEN there's a deluge of posts. Let's see this are a few I think went unchallenged:

KGB, so I guess the media is also hiding the fact that in southern Mexico, specially Chiapas and Tabasco (coincidence?) the PRD had a lot of "shutout" stations? We're talking 4,5 hundred to ZERO for ALL other parties COMBINED. Incredibly enough, the PRD challenged a few of these. Yes! Stations that they won by shutout were challenged because... well... they had "too many" null votes. Sheesh. I guess those representatives sold out too. Oh, and take a guess why the other parties didn't challenge the results, even though they didn't have a representative. C'mon... its the same reason why its logical that the PAN has a few shutout stations of its own.

Now, if "this are the stations the PRD watns to see" then, what you're saying is that it didn't challenge them? Or what? Because last I hear 9% of stations were recounted at the request of the PRD. Did it forget to challenge those? Or perhaps they didn't have any evidence and couldn't convince a judge to open them?

On the fence: You like to complaint that the recount result should have been published immediately. I am tempted to get on your case but I'll leave it at this: those results are considered an intermidiate ruling, part of ongoing legal precedings and thus COULD NOT LEGALLY BE PUBLISHED.

Tex Drifter: I'm srorry to tell you, but the PAN/Calderon NEVER REFUSED to go along with a total recount, they just said it is not their place to ask for one. They also said that if the tribunal ordered one they would accept the ruling. How does that translate into refusal? You also blame Atenco on "the right", and refuse to look at facts as to who was in charge. Fine, there's no blinder person than he who refuses to see. Now, there was also a violent attack on an illegal strike in Michoacan, again, by state police, not federal. If you should take the time to find out which party rules that state you'll be surprised.

fco. First, welcome back. Theres a forum invitation for you as well (we've invited Maya and Pasilla but they haven't answered): http://forums.arielorellana.net/ Now, come on, why do you use outdated and biased numbers? The rulings are on line, you can find out why each and everyone of those decisions was handed out, not speculate as to why the Tribunal "wanted" or not to open them. I also think you just follow the PRD's line instead of actually examining the allegations on your own, like in the case of extrapolating that because AMLO lost x number of votes and Calderon y then AMLO must have won. You know perfectly well that this results cannot be extrapolated for many reasons and that the numbers come from the PRD, not the tribunal. Distortions such as including contested votes in the number of "lost votes" and including contiguos stations (subdivided stations when the number or voters is too large and are thus segmented alphabetically, but still in the same physical location) where the basic loses, say, 3 ballots and the contiguous wins 3 ballots. Where they technically stations with "extracted" or "more votes than voters" problems? Well yes, but this it is plain to see what actually happened and the tribunal ruled in consequence. Also, the Tribunal chastised the PRD for introducing challenges made from a template, making general statements without evidence. The types of rulings that make me uncomfortable are the ones were the PRD failed to sign the challenge or where the challenge was made by someone not authorized to do so. Unfortunately the tribunal decided that it had to play everything by the rules and those complaints were swept away by technicalities, but the Tribunal was consistent in this. As for the "hypocrites" statement involving calls to negotiate and talk, well, you (not meaning you personally, but you as in "your side") haven't really helped your cause by discounting anything and everything you disagree with. Besides, in the long run, you have more to lose with that attitude. Next up, you call those who say that you win or lose by one vote in democracy as lacking in political science knowledge. So I guess AMLO has no political science knowledge then. Finally, you seem to be confident in the legality of the CND. Sorry, even the constitutional specialists that support AMLO have stated that he's been going about it the wrong way, that he should continue but not like that.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 3, 2006 08:08 PM

AMLO says Sunday: We will never accept usurpation nor recognize a president-elect who is illegitimate

Click here for the details and commentary:
http://mexicanosyamericanos.blogspot.com/

Posted by: Adam | September 3, 2006 08:23 PM

I was aware of the history of the PAN, not in such detail, and I do always enjoy learing more details. What I am trying to say is that a country run by a government that represents 51% of the people or less will always have problems with the opposition unless thier is some kind of inclusion or power sharing. There seems to be an attitude on the part of many pro PAN folks to simply dismiss the left. And of course vice versa from the PRD. It seems to me that these attitudes, whatever the rationalization behind them and however good it might be, are counterproductive. Maybe thier is no way to unite 2 sides so bitterly divided. But can any real headway be made without some kind of reconciliation? It seems counterproductive that all preach democracy but would happily squash opposition, be it with violent protests or badly trained riot police.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 08:24 PM

K Vronna, Fehrenbach's book Lone Star is very good, as well as his Comanche book.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 08:26 PM

I would like somebody to explain to me that there is absolutely no connection between the planned airport out by Atenco and the subsequent machetero marches and the later unfortunate events in Atenco in May. Absolutely no vendettas involved?
Was the airport not Fox's baby? Was there no land speculation involved? Please clarify those who have already well researched such topics...

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 3, 2006 08:51 PM

Haven't you, PAN-philos and associates all gone to post at your gated community? Boy, how much you love to erect barriers! I haven't read anything substantive in these unusually lengthy postings. I just want to acknowledge the masterful way that PRD and AMLO played the game. I have been reading for weeks about the "distancing" between AMLO and PRD. Well, it we so witnessed during the opening of the congress session, right? On the other hand the "pacifists" were waiting for the "violent-ones" behind intrusive, very expensive walls and... AMLO asked their followers not to go to congress. A one-two punch to the reaction. Keep talking about Fantasyland, while Mexico is being rebuilt...

Posted by: pasilla | September 3, 2006 09:20 PM

Tex Drifter: first of all, you have to acknowledge that the first contact and susequent raid, along with the legal consequences of their abuses, were made by state police. After that, I would think that there's one factor you have been overlooking when trying to chalk this up to a vendetta: wouldn't a government with such a craving for approval both within and without the country, have easier and more elegant (and faster, how long ago was the airport problem? Its only a rhetorical question, btw) ways of exercising this vendetta? I mean, some say they were smart enough to put in motion a plan to commit fraud that took about 3 years of careful planning and execution. Surely, some legal loophole would have been at their disposal to exercise their revenge, even some national security one. I think in this case the one who has to prove the vendetta connection is the one who claims its existence.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 3, 2006 09:22 PM

Tex Drifter:
On the Airport. Even though I voted for Fox and I support him as he is our President. I do believe the Atenco problem cannot be entirely blamed on him. I think it was a big mistake by Pedro Cerisola and the then Secretary of State, Santiago Creel.
They wanted to build an airport in Atenco, where there have been, historically speaking, popular and insurrection movements that date back centuries, and there is plenty of stuff going on there always. However before the Airport blunder, they seemed to be all right. What triggered their movement off was the fact that some imbecile at the SCT, secreataria de comunicaciones y transportes, under Mr. Cerisola (equally imbecile) decided to expropiate the land belonging to many farmers. The problem was not the Decree of Expropiation, but the miserable price for the land the SCT wanted to pay these poor people.
In a land that where they were planning to build the largest airport in latin america and where real state was going to be one of the most expensive land in the country, these imbeciles at the SCT wanted to pay these farmers some riculous amount, I don't have the real price set by the SCT, but it was as paying 50 dollars for a 5000 dollar car.
Most of the farmers did not agree and they started protesting, but Pedro Cerisola and his people didn't think they were serious, they dissmised them. But some of those farmers losing the land belonged to certain popular organizations, and the intrangency of the SCT got them all united against the whole project. PRD joined in the struggle, although not directly, but demanding in congress to stop the project which they opposed from before. perhaps PRD was part of the initial protests but the cause of the farmers was very legitimate, I believe.

And then the Government backed off after several months of protests and struggle.

Enter 2006: PRD holds ties with many of these popular organizations, they find common grounds in the PRD Radical Socialist agenda. But they remain publicly independet because joining PRD will make their protests illegitimate, that is, will show that their movements are not social but politically motivated to advance the agenda of a particular candidate or party.

In these elections, AMLO and PRD did create ties with them and other movements in the country, like the APPO in Oaxaca, AMLO promised them to destitute the governor if he got elected, so they supported him strongly. Same for the Atenco Macheteros, although like I said, the Atencos are independent and have a history of their own there in Atenco and Edo. De Mexico. Same as those people in Oaxaca.

The elections made all these conflictive organizations wanting to take a leading role and advance their political and social positions and powers. We could see how while AMLO was up in the polls back in January, everything was OK and peaceful, but as soon as Felipe Calderon went up in the polls of voter intentions in March, all of a sudden, conflicts arose here and there, The Atencos, Marcos came to Mexico City, The Labor strikes here and there. And the Oaxaca problem getting more and more intense, making headlines everyday.
But when the Campaign managers of AMLO noticed these events did not help, they told them to stay quiet and they did it. Atenco got quiet because of the police. But the APPO in Oaxaca suspiciusly stop all actions one week before the election.
When AMLO lost, they all remain quiet, but when his movement started making much noise, they started again.

One Felipe Calderon takes office, all these forces will go back to normal, those who won some positions or political territories or powers will hold on to them for the next years and until there is a new big election and the same powers, to which those popular forces traditionally subordinate, get a little distracted again.

This is what I think happened with the Atencos.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 3, 2006 09:31 PM

"I just want to acknowledge the masterful way that PRD and AMLO played the game. I have been reading for weeks about the "distancing" between AMLO and PRD. Well, it we so witnessed during the opening of the congress session, right? On the other hand the "pacifists" were waiting for the "violent-ones" behind intrusive, very expensive walls and... AMLO asked their followers not to go to congress. A one-two punch to the reaction. Keep talking about Fantasyland, while Mexico is being rebuilt...

Posted by: pasilla | September 3, 2006 09:20 PM

Pasilla, that was pathetical, PRD and their "Coalition" of parasite parties, didn't get any position in the governance of the Cameras. Why? Because PRD and their sorry "coalition" represent less than 30% of the Camera seats. While PAN by itself has many more representatives that the PRD "Coalition", and by negotiating with PRI and PVEM and Alternativa, they overuled PRD.
AMLO did not go to congress because he only had some 3 thousand people, not enough.
The PRD took the tribune, but PAN allowed them, but PAN and PRI are going to create regulation for that, so that Felipe Calderon goes to congress on December 1st. And they will use force to get any PRD punky rep out.

But it will not be necessary. AMLO's movement is losing steam day after day. And PRD will break away sooner or later. Because they know if they ever want to do something in congress, they will not do it with their parasite coalition. They need to sit down with PRI and PAN.

Felipe Calderon and PAN have many things to offer you see. AMLO doesn't have any. Only radicalism. People are begining to get away from him already. And as soon as TRIFE rules, DF will cut the chiche. No more Mr. Obrador, you need to get your money from your followers. What can he get from unemployed, underachiever UNAM fossiles, street vendors, punks and panchos villas? Come on! To make a revolution you need some money my friend.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 3, 2006 09:53 PM

pasilla, first of all, the political cost of not allowing the President to deliver a speech that would have otherwise been inconsequential is much higher than anything they could possibly have gained. The PRD continues to foster the union of everybody else against them by either polarizing or vacating their hard-earned position and allowing the PRI and others to occupy it. This has to rank among the stupidest political moves in history, it will cost them dearly come next elections to congress. Where was Convergencia during that occupation, BTW? Also, you can't really bemoan the installation of protective barriers when contingents of protesters were indeed headed to congress and went so far as to throw objects at the police and when AMLO and his supporters tried to set up camp there. If anything, those attacks only proved that if the barriers hadn't been in place and all out confrontation would have occured, AMLO just chickened out first. And please, don't bring that argument about constitutional guarantees when AMLO violates them every day.

Secondly, the "gated community" was created because of threats and attacks carried out by people who identify themselves as belonging to your side. They also follow tactics identified with Victor Hernandez of senderodelpeje. The use of a closed forum is only a consequence of these attacks and is a way of protecting those who wish to participate. We have invited you and select others whom we consider not only our rivals (not enemies) but genuine, smart people who listen and would not carry such childish, immature and dangerous attacks.

I'll reiterate the invitation pasilla, if you care so much, you'll accept. Hell, we invited Maya, how closed minded can we be? You don't have to be alone, invite others to come along, but you have to make sure they're mature enough to not engage in personal threats or exploit knowledge gained there to help outsiders do so. I'll put up with profanity, but not threats (I'll give wider berth to Maya, for reasons known to all those already there and to you) or bigotry. I don't trust Chiapaneco but if YOU personally vouch for him then he's welcome too. Besides, if we were to kick anyone out for no reason, wouldn't that just confirm we're closed-minded elitists?

Finally, I'll also extend the invitation to Tex Drifter. The URL is posted throughout the comments section.

Posted by: | September 3, 2006 09:56 PM

Pasilla: According to many President Fox and PAN are actually very happy. The PRD is very low at the polls, their cause of Voto x Voto has lost any legitimacy because it has been denigrated by such shameful acts as invading the Reforma Ave. and the Zocalo, and now the tribune.
Soon the PRD will also block the September 16 celebrations. No problem, Fox will make them in another location. The Army parade, no problem, but everything will be blamed on PRD and AMLO.

Their cause, the Voto x voto is now long forgotten, few people talk about it anymore and the PRD and AMLO people make it sound as some kind of obssesion. They abused it as a campaign slogan and like any slogan, it had a timelife and such timelife expired.

Now with Felipe Calderon elected president, he and President Fox and PAN and the congress mayority will patiently wait for the AMLO movement to completely autodestroy itself, it is now in a descomposition phasa.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 3, 2006 10:41 PM

Oops, that anonymous post responding to pasilla was mine

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 3, 2006 10:50 PM

Tex Drifter, please spare me this left-right sob story. The neo-fascists in Germany have joined the Left party en masse. Western leftists are now all supporting Islamic fascist parties such as Hezbolla and Mahdi and Ahmadinejad, and some even support the Wahhabis and Takfiris.

Why is it that the west, from Chavez and AMLO and Castro are supporting the religious fascists of Khamenei and Ahmadinejad? Why does supposedly "secular" Chavez invite Hezbolla to set up mosques and madresas in Western Venezuela on the Columbian border?

Your left-right story is obsolete. The left have turned fascistic and totalitarian true to their ideological roots - and since the rise of postmodernism, the left no longer supports human rights and has abandoned ethical principles by and large, as all ethics is now "relativistic" and overridden by subjective considerations.

Fact is that AMLO and his leftists would do the same to Mexican democracy as Chavez and Khamenei have done. Otherwise why are leftists supporting the killing of democrats and liberals in Iran 1980 and now in Iraq. Have you seen a single leftist that has denounced Sadr, Nasrollah, Hamas or even Zarqawi?

The Mexican poor can see this. They know their hard won human rights is in danger from AMLO and his mafia-like supporters, who never worked one honest day in their lives. AMLO has not lifted a finger to strenghten the institution of democracy in Mexico, in this saga. He floated conspiracy theories in order to discredit the election officials. And all this anti-democratic actions with the total support of the so-called "progressive" (more like reactionary) Islam loving leftists.

Posted by: Karim | September 3, 2006 10:56 PM

And AMLO is begining to look more and more like Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro and that crazy guy from Iran. They all love to speak in front of crowds and they do it for hours.

I read that yesterday AMLO spent 50 minutos talking to people at the zocalo. The guy has been talking like that for already more than a month. Chavez is the same, he likes to talk for hours. Problem is they lose perspective and they begin to expose who they really are, like when AMLO said Al diablo con sus instituciones.

What a crazy fellow.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 3, 2006 11:03 PM

This still going? Wow, well, lets see what happens next on sep 16th...that should be interesting. Oh, and i notice that as soon as someone has a diffrence of opinion, like tex dirifter, hes accused of smoking something that affects his thoughts. Hows that for sane responses? Well their are some like me, who will push back if pushed, but if not, well nada pasa, just more agreeing 2 disagree. We may not agree, but am sure most here would defend the right of someone 2 disagree. However when insults are thrown around, well, that just shows that some ppl arent willing to allow disagreements. And in a true democracy thats what its about. Freedom to disagree. Its clear who really are the people who are not willing to put up with a diffrence of opinion, and will just throw up a wall of anger and intolerance. It gets pretty repetative and kinda boring.

Posted by: maya0 | September 3, 2006 11:39 PM

maya0, throwing insults at PUBLIC FIGURES and at HISTORIC FIGURES and at IDEAS including religious ideas is protected by the principle of free speech,and is a requirement in civil and open society. Learn to live with it. You cannot stop free speech because it bothers you. Has it ever occured to you that the reason you feel insulted is because your ideas may be subject to ridicule? I dont see anybody here insulting Tex in person.

If AMLO is insulted, so be it. He is a public figure.

Nobody here is saying Tex cannot voice his opinion. As a liberal, I will defend Tex's right to voice his opinion freely, even though I think he (as a member of the group of post-colonial leftists) is intellectually deficient (like when he claimed that if somebody has "good intentions", then he must be right and fit to rule society).

Posted by: Karim | September 3, 2006 11:58 PM

Karim
Is anyone here a public figure? Or historic? I mention those on this blog.
Far as I know, where average people here. Learn to live with the idea of people having a diffrence on a subject. To have a diffrent idea from ones own, doesnt make one a suspect smoker(like what tex was called) or u calling that person deficient. Why? Only because tex doesnt think like U? Thats pretty intolerant, and not just agreeing to disagree. Cada cabeza es un mundo. Ive been pretty foul here myself, but its only because I allowed my buttons to be pushed, and in all truth, I got a kick out of it. However, no frist blood was drawn by me. I just dont like turning the other cheek, but am learning. U should too.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 12:43 AM

Dear Karim, very interesting comments and information. Don't worry maya0, comments don't bother my poor little bleeding heart. Guess compassion is out of style. Doesn't get results perhaps. Maybe if we just killed all the "intellectually deficient" people with "good intentions", we wouldn't have all the pesky folks in the street right now in Mexico. Hell, if we eliminate them from the US we can get some real foreign wars going, none of that half commited conventional stuff, we could really get those "terrorists" under control and have us some world peace now couldnt we? Sure do miss MacArthur... wouldn't have the Chinese creating steel shortages if he'd of had his way.

I did enjoy the comment by Jerry B about me being a "white and bright American." So nice to be stereotyped by your ideas.

Just trying to get something out of the discussion, as I believe we all are. Some people just like to get thier kicks at the expense of others, and I sure wouldn't want to get rid of thier fun ;)

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 4, 2006 02:13 AM

oh, and by the way, Karim, I didn't say that that people with good intentions were either right or fit to rule society, just said that they deserved to participate in democracy. You seem to know a good deal about how leftists are supporting Islamic militants and terrorists. But who was it that supported and made possible Trujillo the Somozas, Duvaliers, Pinochet and I could make the list go on and on and never leave Latin America. The friendly right leaning government of the US is responsable, in the name of freedom and anticommunism. They gave Franco tons of cash after the the great war against fascism and totalitarianism. I am not arguing left or right, and god forbid making trying to make you sob. The point is that anybody can support a screwball weirdo.
And earlier I was just pointing out that drawing lines divides, and dividing causes conflicts, and conflicts destroy peace, and peace is the ideal state in which to have flourishing economies and happy, harmonious societies(unless of course you live in an Orwellian society where war is good). The idea is that a divided Mexico advances stumbling, not sprinting like it could.

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 4, 2006 03:07 AM

maya0, Your english is deficient. To repeat a previous post: "I will protect Tex's right to free speech". So keep the whiny accusations of "intolerance" to your own group of whinies supporting suiciders in Baghdad and death squads in Hezbolla land - and to selective outrage folks who have no idea how to eliminate poverty except by stealing from the majority others.

Tex Drifter, yes unfortunately compassion is out. If you study a bit on altruistic theory, you will find out that there is no such thing as "compassion" or "selfishness". In fact most of the claims to compassion indirectly circles back to unconscious selfish motives. It is one thing to say the poor deserve equal opportunity based on their natural rights - and it is another thing to say, ohhhhh lets tax the majority others so we can pay off those who insist on having 6 children each for selfish reasons, creating more poor, just because our little hearts are bleeding when we see them wallow on TV. A bleeding heart can turn in an instant into a dark heart - as long as you insist the heart and not the mind to be your guide to politics and society. You cannot have an open and democratic society based on a wishy-washy principle of compassion.

But I will take my comment against you back. Anybody with such good naturedness and tolerant demeanor as you must be intellectually most acute.

You ask, who supported Pinochet, etc. Well, that is basically ancient history. Time is logarithmic, and the cold war is over in 1989. The world changed. To bring back Pinochet or Mossadegh is akin to Persians complaining about the Arab invasion of 648 AD and demanding restitution. I am sure a democratic Chile will have its day of reckoning with the USA in a democratic and mutually understanding fashion. This is no reason why the left should support Hezbolla and Sadr death squads who are killing seculars, Iraqi leftists and democrats everyday.

I mean it is not very smart or ethical to claim that, it is OK for post-colonial leftists to support Iraqi death squads because the USA supported Pinochet in 1973, is it? Neither it is smart to compare 3,000 deaths in Chile to 50,000 deaths in Iraq committed by Islamists and running, is it?

You can never have monolithic society in Mexico. There will always be shades and differences in opinions. The only way you can function in such society is to allow debate and dialog, and that can only be done in a liberal democratic framework. But what AMLO is doing (and so is Chavez) is to attack the institutions of democracy, and then masquerade himself as a democrat. This reminds me of Islamists who when not in power, are all democrats and complain about electoral restrictions. But once in power, they quickly dismantle basic freedoms and democracy. IMO, A liberal democratic state has the right to oppress, any group of people by force, who wish to dismantle and terminate democracy. Because said totalitarian group will oppress and terminate the rights of the population at large, their children, women and minorities once in power. Demaocracy is not about an absolute majority ruling over the losing minority. It is about preservation of human rights.

Posted by: Karim | September 4, 2006 04:01 AM

Me preguntaba como iniciar? no se la verdad. Se han dado cuenta de las cosas cuando se esta en guerra adonde se quiere llegar... A la capital del pais no? Y mas cuando nuestra historia marca sin precedentes acontecimientos de gran envergadura en nuestra capital, es lo que ha hecho amlo, de cierta manera. Pero no entremos en detalles si esta bien su planton o no, o uno se preguntaria entonces si no hubo fraude o no, y eso sin duda nos llevaria a plantear: ¿porque tantos comerciales de televisa, ife, consejo empresarial nos atiborran dicendo a cada minuto que no lo hubo? ¿porque probar algo que es verdad? no se han cuestionado esto, acaso son tan ingenuos sigue siendo el mexico de años atras pan y circo, perdon chelas y futbol. Que razonamiento tan grave en las gandes ciudades como df, monterrey, guadalajara etc. ¿se puede manipular mediaticamente tan facil? que no tendria que ser un poco al reves, ya que en las ciudades segun hay mas nivel cultural, economico, etc.

Pero ese no es el punto, Se han puesto a pensar que es lo que esta pasando, como un solo hombre es capaz de tanto. Asi como se oye aunque suene mesianico. Hechos sin duda:

Quien en los años recientes de nuestra historia ha sido capaz de algo similar.

De que estamos siendo testigos sin querer o no, ya no si estamos a favor o en contra.

Quien ha hecho temblar las instituciones del pais y escribir paginas en la historia de mexico. como?

recuerden

suprema corte de justicia: caso encino

Institucion presidencial: complot y descaro total al involucrarse en el proceso electoral.

Ife: Fraude electoral

Tribunal electoral: Ratificacion del fraude

Legislativo: informe presidencial

Iglesia: apoyar a un partido

De manera breve explico:cuando se habia visto soy viejo pero aun asi no recuerdo que no se dejara dar el informe aun presidente, cuando se habia visto que simpatizantes de algun partido es decir el pueblo estuviera contra la iglesia, cuando se habia visto unas instituciones tan debiles y mediocres, cuando se habia visto junta a miles de personas con tal magnitud a un politico en nuestro pais.

Estos hechos son historicos ya, nos guste o no y lo que falta, para bien o para mal. son pocas las cosas que se recuerden que hayan formado parte de la historia sin hechos violentos y hasta hoy en ese movimiento de amlo no los hemos visto.

Es un gran lider, el dia 1 de septiembre llegaron camiones y camiones de diferentes estados, el fin todos los conocemos congreso de la union, eso hubiera sido un caos, quienes digan y los respeto, que amlo es un enfermo de poder, no estoy de acuerdo con ellos por que ordeno no ir al congreso? porque no demostrar su fuerza?, era facil no total a el no le iban a partir la madre o no? y la gente obedecio y acepto. Si el hubiera dicho vayan van.

Falta el 15 y 16 de septiembre, y quizas la institucion del ejercito que pasara sin duda historia para bien o para mal, ¿cuando se habia impedido el grito y desfile del ejercito? vamonos mas alla el 1 de diciembre.

En diversas universidades se empieza a analizar todo esto en diversas clases de sociales.

Estamos viendo el trancurrir de paginas historicas y sin violencia aun, no quiero pensar cuando la haya. 1810, 1910 será 2010...

Posted by: danieldf | September 4, 2006 04:40 AM

maya0: The force of the Pacifics will always prevail against the violents.
The Violents (amlito and his gang of losers) have been trying to take Congress by force. The Pacifics (PAN) only defended it.
The Pacifics allowed the violents to take the tribune because under the governance rules of Congress it is not possible to get the Violents out of the tribune. But the Pacifics will change that so that the next time the Violents try to take the tribune, the Pacifics can call on the Federal Pacific Forces to kick the hell out those violent perredistas.

So don't worry. Felipe Calderon will take office and the force of the Pacifics will prevail against the naco violents.

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 4, 2006 06:30 AM

pasilla,

Orellana is cautious,not stupid.

Read an effete sample of meancing linguistics:

http://senderodefecal.blogspot.com/

Posted by: rodolfo | September 4, 2006 06:35 AM

Oh I've never ever called pasilla stupìd. He's anything but. Thats the main reason he gets a personal invite. You too Maya, if you're still reading this..

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 4, 2006 10:55 AM

kind bloggers,
would anyone be willing to post a link to the official statements of TRIFE since AMLO refused to conceed the election?

Posted by: scottcoleman | September 4, 2006 11:19 AM

I'm not exactly sure what you're referring too. AMLO does not have to concede anything until after tomorrow's session, if indeed Calderon is declared the winner, but you can visit the Tribunal's page at http://www.trife.org.mx

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 4, 2006 12:51 PM

scottcoleman:
Here you should be able to find the resolutions but I don't know about their statements or press releases.

http://www.trife.gob.mx/

Posted by: emptyboxes | September 4, 2006 12:52 PM

scottcoleman,

TRIFE is a very circumspect office and doesn't have a PR desk.

They stick to the principle of no comments on ongoing litigation.

The public statements they post about cases involving final verdict are legal in nature and unreadable to the general public.

These people kick ass with gusto and nobody
can mess with them. They are mmore a papal conclave with sealed doors and work in absolute secrecy. Their verdict readings are seen as white smoke at the end of a protracted mysterious process.

The proceedings are written not oral as in the USA. Quarreling parties take their suit in written form and the judges, through their clerks might ask for more information by the parties involved or in this case from IFE or other institutions related to the suit.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 4, 2006 01:40 PM

The wait is almost over. This was posted this morning:

Definirán mañana
elección presidencial

Los siete magistrados votarán un dictamen que les será propuesto por Alfonsina Navarro y Mauro Reyes Zapata, con lo que terminará la calificación

Ciudad de México (4 septiembre 2006).- La Sala Superior del Tribunal Electoral del Poder Judicial de la Federación emitirá mañana su resolución final sobre el ganador de la elección presidencial del 2 de julio.

A las 8:00 horas, conforme la Ley Orgánica del Poder Judicial de la Federación, en los estrados de la sede del Trife apareció el aviso de sesión pública, con la firma del magistrado presidente, Leonel Castillo González.

"Para emitir la resolución correspondiente al cómputo final de la elección de Presidente de los Estados Unidos Mexicanos, a la declaración de validez de la elección y a la de Presidente electo, esta Sala Superior celebrará sesión pública en la sala destinada para ese efecto el próximo día 5 de septiembre del año 2006, a las 8:00 horas", dice el aviso.

La Constitución General establece como plazo máximo el 6 de septiembre para que el Pleno de la Sala Superior concluyan con el proceso electoral federal.

En la sesión de mañana, los siete magistrados electorales votarán un dictamen que les será propuesto por Alfonsina Berta Navarro Hidalgo y Mauro Miguel Reyes Zapata, con lo que se cumplirá la fase de calificación, establecida por las leyes electorales.

Previamente, el Trife desahogó los 375 juicios de impugnación, promovidos por los partidos y las coaliciones que contendieron en los comicios federales.

El pasado 5 de agosto, los magistrados electorales ordenaron la realización de diligencias judiciales para abrir los paquetes electorales y recontar los votos en 11 mil 897 casillas de 147 distritos electorales, luego de vincular al mismo número de expedientes tramitados por la coalición por el Bien de Todos.

Aún no se conoce el cómputo final de la elección de Presidente de la República, pues las sentencias ejecutorias de los recuentos todavía no son divulgadas.

Después de que los magistrados hagan el análisis sobre la validez de la elección, entregarán la constancia de mayoria al candidato que haya obtenido el mayor número de votos.

We should know tomorrow.

Posted by: TG | September 4, 2006 01:46 PM


Top 10 reasons why Calderon is the best choice for Mexico:

1. First and foremost, Calderon will make sure that Mexico continues the trend set out by Echeverria, Lopez Portillo, De la Madrid, Salinas and Fox. What trend is that? The trend of a long list of accomplishments occurred in the last 30 yrs. of PRI-PAN government.

2. Calderon will make sure that 50% of Mexicans remain with an income of less than $1 dollar a day.

3. Calderon will make sure that the exodus of millions of unemployed Mexicans continue going to the USA.

4. Calderon will make sure that the lack of gains in science and technology occurred during the Echeverria, Lopez Portillo, De La Madrid, Salinas and Fox continue.

5. Calderon will make sure that Mexico remains a 3rd world country.

6. Calderon will make sure that none of the participants of the bank frauds committed every sexenio are brought to justice.

7. Calderon will make sure that the Durazos, Hank Gonzalez and Salinas are able to steal with absolute impunity.

8. Calderon will make sure that the income and social disparities between the Mexican north and south increase.

9. Calderon will make sure that millions of young Mexicans have limited access to quality education.

10. There has been absolutely no improvement in the living conditions in Mexico for the past 30 yrs. But thank God we have Calderon to maintain the status quo.

God bless you.

Posted by: Top 10!!! | September 4, 2006 01:51 PM

What he actually meant is:

Rematar 10 razones por las que Calderon es la mejor opción para México:

1. Sobre todo, Calderon se cerciorará de que México continúe la tendencia precisada por Echeverria, el la Madrid de Lopez Portillo, del De, las salinas y el Zorro. ¿Qué tendencia es ésa? La tendencia de una lista larga de realizaciones ocurrió en los años pasados del gobierno del Bread.

2. Calderon se cerciorará de que los 50% del mexicano permanezcan con una renta de menos de $1000 dólares por día.

3. Calderon se cerciorará de que los éxodos de millones de mexicano parado continúen yendo a los E.E.U.U. chachalacas.

4. Calderon se cerciorará de que la carencia de aumentos en ciencia y tecnología ocurriera durante el Echeverria, Lopez Portillo, La Madrid, salinas del De y el jamoncito of la Fuentecitas continúa.

5. Calderon se cerciorará de que México no siga siendo un país del tercer mundo.

6. Calderon se cerciorará de que ningunos de los participantes de los fraudes del voto confiaran cada sexenio estén traídos a la justicia.

7. Calderon se cerciorará de que el Durazos, la madeja Gonzalez y las salinas puedan sobar con impunidad absoluta.

8. Calderon se cerciorará de que la renta y las disparidades sociales menos el norte mexicano y el aumento del sur.

9. Calderon se cerciorará de que millones de mexicano joven hayan limitado el acceso a la educación de la sexualidad.

10. No ha habido absolutamente mejora en las condiciones vivas en México por los últimos 30 años. Pero agradecer a dios que tenemos Calderon para mantener el mister amigo.

El dios te bendice.

Fijado cerca: ¡Tapa 10!!!

| 4 de septiembre de 2006 01:51 P.M.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 4, 2006 03:39 PM

A friend in Venezuela sent me this essay by a guy named Daniel Duquenal about how the left in Latin America, Chavez included, of course, is becoming more and more fascist. Here is an excerpt of what he had to say about our Little Lopez--

"The catch here is that even without a putative electoral fraud, AMLO did not get 50% + 1 vote. That is right, he did not even get 40% of the votes. His fraud claims are so tenuous, though perhaps with some merit, that they cannot account for that 10% missing that would morally allow him to set the political mess he is setting. In fact, the PAN largely outscored the PRD of AMLO in congress! That is right, far from an absolute majority of the Mexican voters, AMLO still forges ahead and tries to impose his ambition on all Mexicans. The whole protest every day smacks more and more of a neo-fascism."

Someone observing this situation from Venezuela has a perspective that people in Mexico may lack. Chavez started as a champion of the people and a fighter against corruption. Little by little, though, he has taken complete control of the country. He was elected democratically, but he prefers to speak of his "revolution." Like the radical Islamists he so admires, Chavez sees democracy as something to be used once and then discarded.

Posted by: Goyo | September 4, 2006 04:17 PM

Goyo,

Are you calling Chavez a raping, thuggish dictator pimp?

If you are I agree.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 4, 2006 05:09 PM

"Chavez sees democracy as something to be used once and then discarded."

Kinda like using democracy as a battering ram to open the door to power and then, you're there. Since AMLO likes baseball, would he have taken his bat to congress like Huguito?

Posted by: | September 4, 2006 05:34 PM

Hechos. Not words, but hechos. AMLO has hechos. Where was his dictorial style when he was mayor? He has a track record. So does Chavez, hechos, like giving 7pecent growth to his country for almost 5years. Hechos. Not just words. Oh, and with Chavez, its not only because of oil, theirs been oil always in his country, why wasnt their growth? Oh pls dont say because of war, because papa bush, had his own war, didnt affect venezuela positively back then. Words can come and go like the wind, but what people do, is what counts. AMLO didnt send his 5000 supporters down Reforma to take on the PFP, he didnt want to see bloodshed. Thats his hechos. U people may go on and on about what a terrible thug he is, but his actions, is what counted. Reminds me of the civil rights movement in the USA, when lots of Americans hated, really hated Martin Luther King, and Malcom X. Hated them so much, like some people in Mexico, really hate AMLO, really detest him. They compare him with real monsters, but based on what? His deeds? Because he took out one street? Its just a street. Hes not holding a machete high in the air is he? Hes not baking anyone in a oven, a la hitler. Hes hasnt exiled anyone to a siberia, a la satlin. Hes defending democracy in Mexico. His actions are lounder than words. AMLO has justice on his side. AMLO wont back down. Fox had no choice but to back down, because he wouldnt face harsh critics who would have shouted down his fractured fairy tales. AMLO will have his convention, those will be his actions. He will be there on the 16th of Sep. He will face with his own person, any consequenses. This is a man of action, not just words, like those that get tossed around here so much by the likes of, well u all know who u all are dont u?

¡HASTA LA VICTORIA SIEMPRE!

Oh and Karim
"Demoacracy?" Wow, i bow to your efficent use of the kings tongue!

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 06:28 PM

Top 10 reasons why AMLO is the best choice for Mexico:

1. AMLO's type of radicalization of politics has made countries like Nicaragua climb near first place in the ranking of poorest countries in Latin America, even ahead of Bolivia. It is good to be best at something. Look out Haiti, here comes Mexico.

2. AMLO is making his base feel better about their loss. They didn't really lose, it was a conspiracy of election-duty citizens, poll watchers, international observers, and most especially voters who did not want AMLO. What is more presidential than representing all Mexicans who share your party afficiliation and political believes? Viva the party loyalist president.

3. He is the only politician brave and intelligent enough to propose massive government spending as the "new" solution to poverty... just like the Russian Communists, Nicaraguan Commmunists, and Angolan Communists before him (and until the last 20 years when they started growing with capitalist policies, the Chinese Communists). Viva la revolucion del pasado.

4. Respect for laws against any recount, against judges that interpret those laws, and against presidents that execute thoses laws... who needs that kind of respect when people believe AMLO that he is for "renovating insitutions" and saving democracy (from itself).

5. He is doing in Mexico what no major party candidate has ever done in the US - threaten revolution if his defeat is ratified. Surely some country needs presidential candidates like that. Does yours? Mexico has one, now everyone wants one too, right? Certainly AMLO can help train your country's politicians to be just like the Mexican far left's candidate.

6. AMLO will stop the boring stability of the last decade that has allowed the Mexican middle class to reappear and he promises to replace it with the sort of revolutionary rhetory that creates millions of jobs. After all, Mexico has long had Mexicans that made lofty promises to the poor. Any voter that is stupid enough to continue to believe their politician's to-good-to-be-true promises... probably deserves them as their politician.

7. A nation that has already gained modern jobs, foreign reserves, and wealth in the northern states from trade with the United States needs a politicians who will change the relationship with the United States to a confrotational one.

8. A nation that has long-suffered from threat of rebellion by radicals needs someone to represent them as president with threats of revolution.

9. A nation that has long suffered with chronic unemlpoyment needs a champion for state ownership of entriprise which countries like England has taken steps back from in order to lower it's own unemployment rate and the crowding out of private sector job growth and credit.

10. A nation with fragile fledgling democratic and newly-independent insitutions needs a President to challenge those institutions.

(and one that didn't make the list because too few people would understand: a nation that has long suffered double-digit inflation until the last few years needs a president to reverse the progress against inflation by renewing massive government spending without first increasing the nation's wealth or growth rate... just to test if double-digit inflation is still posible in Mexico)

Posted by: eljefejesus | September 4, 2006 06:48 PM

Maya0,
may I be the first to reply? If so, just want to give you your next lesson since you asked why Chavez is "delivering" growth to Venezuela. As you have noticed at the pumps, oil pricdes are high. Why are oil prices high? Because of China and India's economies with a billion-plus people each have seen significant growth in their economies (10% and 5% range respectively) for extended periods of time while speculators have anticipated these trends (combined with the the fear of additional disruptions that will last longer than the first Iraq war).
I know, I know, you must be wondering what does the price of oil in china have to do with Venezuela? Well, oil is a tradeable good in the world... and Venezuela sells oil on the world oil markets. This means if and when oil prices go down, Venezuela will be up feces's creek without a paddel. But if we're getting too deep into the economics of it or if anybody doesn't like the answer... too bad.
The is important to Mexico because we are also spending a lot of our oil wealth with no emergency financial reserve yet created. Countries like Mexico and Venezuela must ask themselves: What will we do with our debts? Who will lend to us to invest and grow if we do not pay our debts timely? Picture a national credit score that affects our national interest rates.
Maya0, if you do feel like you're learning something, then I congratulate you. There may be hope for you yet.

Posted by: eljefejesus | September 4, 2006 07:08 PM

"Demoacracy?" Wow, i bow to your efficent use of the kings tongue!

Actually, maya0, the king might very well use his tongue like that, which king were you talking off?

Posted by: PeterN | September 4, 2006 07:18 PM

"Since AMLO likes baseball..." He does? Good for him, he is not a TOTAL jackass afterall...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 07:28 PM

"...and with Chavez, its not only because of oil, theirs been oil always in his country, why wasnt their growth?"

In the 1970s, when the price was high, the government of Carlos Andres Perez (who Chavez tried to overthrow in his second term) spent oil proceeds lavishly buying the loyalty of the poor, only to lose it when oil prices collapsed in the 1980s and 1990s.


"Oh pls dont say because of war, because papa bush, had his own war, didnt affect venezuela positively back then."

Actually, to the extent the war in Iraq has curtailed oil supplies and added to instability, it has benefited Chavez. He can also thank American profligacy, he should worship the SUV.

The high rate of growth appears good because of the oil bonanza that comes with higher prices (driven by world events, not anything done by Chavez) and also it is recovering from several years of severe decline.

Once you strip away the rhetoric, Hugo's "socialism for the 21st century" looks very much like the 20th century version. As long as oil prices stay high they may be able to continue this facade, but once they decline, Hugo's new utopia will crash like a house of card.

Posted by: RC | September 4, 2006 07:30 PM

Maya, I was going to deliver today's economics lesson for you, but eljefejesus did it for me. At $70 a barrel, mickey mouse could be running Venezuela right now, and the economy would still grow. Let me ask you a question. I am going to assume you would agree the price of oil is high due to demand and scarcity. Do you think it will ALWAYS be high? (One of your heroes, Jose Lopez Portillo, did, and spent accordingly.) If the United States were to go into recession, and people had less money to buy gas, do you think prices would still stay high? When the Alberta shale oil fields come on line, will that have any affect on prices. Any one or a combination of these factors, or something I have not even thought of, could drive prices of oil down to as low as $10 a barrel. If that happens, or if it just goes to $40, do you think the Venezuelan economy will continue to grow?

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 07:35 PM

First, a historical fact:

Between 1914-1939, germany suffered a legal limbo, because of political conflicts between workers parties and capitalist parties. So the most important state decisions, those concerning redistributive and laboral maters, turn to another places in the government: presidencial decrees and judiciary ultimate decisions which were subject, as an agency, to the capitalists grops. Under this conflictual context, emerged Hitler... he won by electoral fraud and implementing a dirty campaign against his socialist opponents.

Of course, we are not in Germany, but this kind of intra-state coflicts is a regular historical situation for many countries in the world. Most of the times the right wins, but sometimes the left does.

The result is a polarization, for both sides.

I am sure that AMLO is getting stronger by a dialectic fact: people from below back him more and more; middle classes, as always, paint their line (pintan su raya), and high classes promote anger and hate.

The right wing prompted and estimulated this phenomenon.

I wonder American government would have preffered a president which granted governance and constituted a real mediator between workers and employers, lower classes and high classes, indigenous and mestizos, etc.

But the sub-autonomy faculties enjoyed by mexican oligarchy and the corrupted promotion of the Catholic Church, permitted them to bet for a radical neoliberal and proto-fascist strategy, which offers to American government a grant for "free trade" (biased trade, pro USA), and military and policial governance. And of course, military alliance against Cuba, and EL EJE DEL MAL. And that also means keeping with the the dependence of scientific and technological assistance from the north (FeCal-Gordillo-Sahagún Alliance shows that under-development education plan).

So, now What is next?

By different means, FeCal will provoke the pro-AMLO movement, in order to justify, to the hipnotized TV and Foxyland audience, the violent repression.

Untill now the movement has not broken the law (mexican constitution and UNU and ILO international laws). Left Lawyers act at the congress, was legal (they enjoy the right to protest that way, it is written in mexican law).

FeCal and Fox have broken the law many times. The last one was the anti-constitutional military barricade around the congress.

Read Mexican Constitution, and discover the truth. We, mexicans, enjoy the right to protest.

Posted by: Gorgojín | September 4, 2006 07:37 PM

Can any of you PANistas or their supporters, handle a little light reading?
I challenge anyone of you, to read the following

http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2006/09/just_try_voting_here.html

If anyone of you can read all of this, and finish with a dry eye at the end, well, you should reconsider what your humanity really is all about.

The Mexican Miracle continues.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 07:38 PM

Please don't compare Mexico with Haiti, its not realistic or funny. And while Mexico has seen great growth and improvements in the north and in the cities, the south and the country have been largely left behind. Things would actually be much worse in rural situations if people weren't leaving for the states because they can't make ends meet as agriculturalists. NAFTA, while necesary and beneficial in many ways, sold Mexican small agriculturalists short, not giving them enough protection for long enough. And as far as I know the federal government did little or nothing to prepare them, correct me if I'm wrong. OK, admitedly, Mexican leftism is out of date, but then many of the southerners who support it have been left behind in another era as well, so it shouldn't be such a surprise. If you don't want those horrible "nacos" taking over the reforma and the Zocalo and generally screwing up traffic and politics, make sure they get real jobs at real wages and they might even pay taxes. If you don't want Zapatistas violently taking your munipalities and touring the country fomenting rebellion, give them hospitals, medicine, sanitation, electricity, education and an opportunity to make enough money to support thier families. I think this is a generally understod idea. It wasn't until after the EZLN showed up though, that money was put into Chaipas. But too late, the EZLN only was ever able to succeed and is only still there because it fills a gap that the Mexican government never tried to, until afterwards. If you don't like leftist politicians, get rid of thier supporters by improving thier lives. and another thing, it is true that if the technology and skill exchange from the maquilas is nil, you are just staving of poverty anyway. The maquilas should be a way to get to something better, not just a job to keep your family fed (which admitedly is better than nothing).

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 4, 2006 07:43 PM

Jerry B
Do u think Iran and Mr Danger will have the price of oil, going back down to 10 bucks a barrel? How about 40? Oh, and about your lesson, and by that other chap, well, Mexicos sells around 3miilon and a half barrels a day. Why isnt their no growth here in Mexico? Maybe we need a Mexican Mickey Mouse?

The Mexican Miracle continues....

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 07:44 PM

sorry people, thats the wrong html I posted above but a intresting article anyways, heres the correct html

http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2006/09/exodus.html

This is the real tear jerker. Read it and weep all who dare.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 07:47 PM

I agree that the pro-Catholic Church thing and taking sides with the US against Cuba is very unfaithful to the legacy left to Mexico (and kept till recently) by reforma era politicians. Seperation of church and state is a good thing. neither the Church or the US should affect Mexican politics. But then again I guess I would be a little delusional if I didn't think the US had a lot of sway in Mexican politics...

"El respeto al derecho ajeno es la paz"

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 4, 2006 07:59 PM

"military alliance against Cuba" Gorgojin, what are you smoking? Do you really believe that the US wants or needs Mexican military help against Cuba? What are they going to do, send the ZETAS over there to tear the place up. You also say that the left has not broken the law. Has the law changed, and now only tents are allowed on Reforma, not cars? If not, then they are breaking the law. Period. Ditto for busting into tollbooths. There is no argument, it is simply illegal. And, gorgogin, those who do things that are illegal are, play close attention, "breaking the law".

Maya, it is good to see you can parrot Col. Chavez (Mr. Danger). You should read up on the oil shale up in Alberta. Once that comes on line, the prices, they will be a coming down. And, I wasn't aware that there had been "no" growth in Mexico. Silly me. I guess the reason I just spent an hour to move about 2 miles in Tijuana was because no one can afford cars in Mexico...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 08:10 PM

PeterN,

mayaO was talking about king ELIZABETH II.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 4, 2006 08:27 PM

The figures on Venezuelan growth taken from Ariel Orellano's post of August 10, 2006 10:59 AM. If Ariel could confirm his source for usit would be helpful.

"As for Venezuela growing at "7% a year for the last 5 years", that is not quite true, if you look at 1999 (outside the 5 year range, admitedly) you'll see that economic growth for Venezuela was an amazing -7.2% and. Even more, in 2002 and 2003 GDP was -8.9% and -9.4% respectively. I guess maya doesn't want to include those 3 years, all of them under Chavez. 2004 was a bounce-back year, at over 17% growth. That didn't make up for the previous 2 years, so that's 3 years out of that 5 year range where growth was, to put it wildly generously, a *BIG-FAT-ZERO*. To achieve EVEN 5% a year over 5 years Venezuela would need something like, oh, I don't know... no wait, I DO know: 31.8% over 2 years. 7%? 44.8% over 2 years.

Oh, oil is 80% of Venezuela's exports. Hey *I* could manage 7% GDP growth under those conditions."

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 4, 2006 08:31 PM

Yes, Maya, hurray for all the debt. Maybe your mommy and daddy bought you your house and car, but most of us do not have an extra half million pesos sitting around, so we have to finance these things.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 08:40 PM

Growth in Mexico is one thing, debt, which any one with good credit can get, is another thing totally. Hurray for all the debt? Nice things to be rooting for. Try reading if u can stand it, thatlast post that links to the exodus article. Lots of growth their for U. Just might not be to your liking.

oh and Karim,
who loves to touch on the subject of the mideasterns. Take a look at this nice cartoon, made me think of U, and people who think in that line of thinking

http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/item/mr_fish_t_shrit_20060112/
.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 08:43 PM

that didnt link to mr fishs cartoon
its the right http, but it takes u elsewhere.

http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/P90

will take u to his page, scroll down to
Mr fish t shirt, that i dedicate to U
Karim

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 08:44 PM

JerryB

Ever heard of a chocolate? or a ONNAPAFA?
Thats all i could afford thank u.

Come on, dont be chickens, read that exodus article i posted above, its quite long, but broken into short bits. U might not want to eat when u read it thou.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 08:51 PM

If you are trusting ONNAPAFA, you really nead help.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 08:54 PM

Many posts have described the South as being "left out" or "left behind" as if prosperity were brought to us by a gift-giver and the southern lands were passed over during the hand out session. The North was never given anything. The prosperity here was earned through very hard work and good decision making.

Posted by: Greg | September 4, 2006 09:08 PM

Jerry B: I don´t smoke what you do, let me guess... Dumbo´s cigarrettes or Mickey Mouse´s? Fox smoke that herb, and created a fantasy land.

Part of the price that will pay FeCal for the USA support, as it was for Fox, is the complete change of the principles of no intervention politics which had lead mexican foreing policy for years.

Mexican soldiers trained in the USA? Of course: LA ESCUELA DE LAS AMERICAS.

Military alliance means many things: logistic support, permission to operate into mexican territory (international demarcation), etc... it is not necesary to send mexican troops to Cuba.

Anyway, in their machiavllian plans, mexican army will be too busy reppressing citizens.

This polarization affects also the USA, as Wallerstein points out:

Por supuesto, los de izquierda y centro-izquierda en Estados Unidos impulsarán una resistencia contra esta camarilla (Cheney´s gorillas), ahora que se sienten revigorizados, enojados y ansiosos por el rumbo de la política estadunidense. Hay una lenta pero clara radicalización de la izquierda y aun de la centro-izquierda.

Cuando eso ocurra, la derecha militarista emprenderá represalias muy agresivamente. Cuando Lamont ganó las elecciones internas en su estado, un lector del Wall Street Journal escribió una carta que decía: "hemos llegado al punto de inflexión en este país; si permitimos que la izquierda gobierne como mayoría, nuestro país está acabado". Este lector llama "ineptos" a los líderes republicanos. El, como muchos otros, buscará líderes más fieros.

Todo mundo se preocupa por la guerra civil en Irak. ¿Y qué pasará en Estados Unidos? Alarmantes tiempos se avecinan.

Posted by: Gorgojín | September 4, 2006 09:13 PM

Gorgojin, you really should study American history before you attempt to comment on it. I would reccomend you look at the "radicalization" of the left in the 1930's, and the general polarization of politics from the end of the Civil War until 1900. And, you know what? NOTHING happened. No revolution, nada.

Abandoning the "no intervention" policy would be an excellent idea, why be quiet in the face of barbarism. I think the world is a far better place because, in the last ten years, "intervention" in places like Rwanda, Timor Leste, and Bosnia stopped genocide. If you are opposed to intervention, does that also mean you want the Mexican government to stop agitating for better treatment of Mexicans in the United States?

And, if Cuba is such a paradise, why does ten percent of the Cuban population live in Miami?

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 09:19 PM

Another reason the south has lagged behind in growth (besides the more obvious ones such as educational quality, infrastructure challenges due to mountainous terrains, caciques, etc.) is the intromission of politics in almost every public activity. This has led to wastes of time and money on useless turf wars and the discouragement of local entrepreneurship. Politics and politicians have to give way to rational organizations that have a specific mandate to do certain tasks.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 4, 2006 09:24 PM

If absolute non-intervention were the norm in the international community, we'd be saying "Heil Hitler Jr" and speaking German; well the Aryan members of Mexican society. The rest of us inferior races would not be around.

Castro has used his cult personality to avoid the circumspection that any other government leader would be subject to and then condemned for failing to respect the basic human freedoms.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 4, 2006 09:49 PM

"Do u think Iran and Mr Danger will have the price of oil, going back down to 10 bucks a barrel? How about 40? Oh, and about your lesson, and by that other chap, well, Mexicos sells around 3miilon and a half barrels a day. Why isnt their no growth here in Mexico? Maybe we need a Mexican Mickey Mouse?"

maya0, mexican oil is low quality compared to that of other countries like Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. If foreign countries buy mexican oil is to fill up their reserves not to immediately use it since they have to treat our oil in a different way so it can reach the desirable level of quality. If the regular price of the oil barrel is $70, the best mexican mix is sold around $65. For example, I think that the Olmeca mix, our lowest quality, sells around $60-$62. Our oil is not that important really and it is a big mistake to try to rely on oil completely again. We have been trying so hard to stop being a monoproducing country like Venezuela. Our dependency of oil has droped a bit but it is still being not enough. Venezuela will be nothing in 30-50 years when the international industry switches to a new energetic source. I really don't want that for my country so please stop citing Venezuela as it is the ultimate wonder of the world cuase it really isn't.

Posted by: bunburina | September 4, 2006 10:23 PM

bunburina
Its not that i think Venezuela is anything special, its just that its not as bad as ppl keep bringing up because of lovable Mr Hugo. Oil in Mexico is not the top money maker, anyways. Its drugs and illegals. What pray tell would happen to poor lil old Mexico if that drain where really plugged?

JerryB
I dont trust Onnapafa for anything, its just a sticker on a car, where did i ever write I trusted them? (C how u luv 2 invent,what R U smoking?) but it keeps trasito a bay. And thats about the only car that the majority of ppl here in the north can afford 2 buy. Perhaps you dont like that fact, but it is.
The Mexican Miracle continues......

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 10:53 PM

maya0

How much tax revenue does the Mexican economy get from drug dealers? What do they fill in under sources of revenue box?

Illegals send remittances to their families, which are not taxed. How does that benefit the building of hospitals or the salary of doctors etc?

Posted by: PeterN | September 4, 2006 11:08 PM

Maya, "What pray tell would happen to poor lil old Mexico if that drain (illegal immigration)where really plugged?" We would be forced to make some very hard decisions that would have been easy decisions if they had been taken 20 years ago, that's what. Decisions like radically reforming the Federal Labor Law, busting up PEMEX's monopoly, privatizing the CFE, breaking up TELMEX, and introducing real union democracy. All the sacred cows that AMLO is sworn to protect, in other words, would have to be sacraficed.

I do not know what cow town you live in, but the majority of the people in Baja California are not driving chocolate cars. Must be because we all have jobs...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 11:10 PM

Peter N, in the US, on the Schedule C (self employment form) of the tax forms, their are numbered codes to describe the kind of job producing revenue. One of the codes is "illegal activity". This way, they can not only bust you for dealing drugs, but for tax evasion as well, which is, after all, how they got Al Capone. And, if you are an Arellano Felix, and actually filled out a form and paid taxes, that information could not be used against you, do to self incrimination laws.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 11:12 PM

K.Vronna,

I think you meant Bush Jr., and not Hitler Jr....

Posted by: Gorgojín | September 4, 2006 11:13 PM

Gorgojin, do you like Bush so much that you say "Heil Bush JR?" Hell of a way to great your friends.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 11:16 PM

I know US forms are rather strange, demanding a very high level of honesty. My visa waiver form includes (among other questions) "Are you involved in espionage for a foreign power".

As M might say "Well s··t Bond, why did you go and tick that box!"

Posted by: PeterN | September 4, 2006 11:22 PM

A question on the form for becoming a permament resident asks "Have you ever been a prostitute?" Another asks "Have you committed genocide?" I wonder how many yes answers they get...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 11:29 PM

I've always been deathly afraid of those genocidal hookers; they're almost as bad as the 'dentists & diabetical scum' that Emptyboxes warned us about.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 4, 2006 11:32 PM

Jerry B,
I´m talking about Mexican foreign politics.

I think UN is a multilateral organisation which would be helpfull to the democratic understanding of peoples.

It´s not a surprise that now USA has been rejecting its own creation.

And of course, during world war two USA enemies never hit American continetal territory.

But they did just a few years ago. Before S-11 almost nobody in America would believe that such a terrorist attack could be possible.

Arrogance is a common attitude between imperialists.

I don´t defend Cuba´s regime. But of course, American intentions are imperialists.

Now nobody believes that Diseneyland story about Democracy in America (check out Ohio and Florida), and its heroic mission to save the world, bombing and killing hundreds of innocent children in middle east.

I think only some candid and / or insane (enajenados) people in USA do believe that legend.

And of course, some cynical people (from Sloterdijk´s idea "Cynical Reason") like you.

It´s not an offence, it´s a philosophical adscription.

Posted by: | September 4, 2006 11:33 PM

Whoever wrote that last rant, I am not defending America. But I like the place. And, warts and all, it generally works. Is it perfect? No. But, show me another big country that acts better than the Americans have. China? France? (haha) Germany? Mexico? (Do we treat illegal immigrants in Chiapas better or worse than the Americans treat illegal Mexicans?) Who?

Considering the levels of immigration that America has always had (They accept more legal immigrants than the rest of the world COMBINED.), the racial, religious, and cultural diversity, and the myriad different belief systems, they should be in the streets killing each other. They are not. And, in a world full of Rwandas, Congos, Haitis, Yugoslavias and Chechnyas, that is a miracle.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 4, 2006 11:36 PM

May not like the facts, but facts they are.
Without Drugs, and illegals, Mexico wouldnt be Mexico as its understood today.
USA DEA estimates from 1996, was around 40billon entering Mexico, and that was 10 years ago, what could it be now?
20billion a year from the sweat of the undocumented worker is whats normally stated. They say New Orleans has more Mexicans than blacks now. Look at the above post (exodus) and see updates on both figures. I know, I know its hard for some of U to stomach facts as they are, instead of the making facts bend into whatever your trying to point out. But facts are facts. Numbers are clear for anyone willing to read. Just dont tear out the hairs that u all have left, reading exodus, because believe me, U Panistas wont like what it says. But the facts are their. Soon Mardi Gras will be some sort of 5de mayo floats with a Virgen Maria juxtapose with tigres de norte. The invasion continues, or better yet the retaking, thou, New Orleans wasnt a part of Mexico.

Oh and Jerry B, la region Lagunera is estimated to hover around 1 million souls covering parts of 2 states, Durango and Coahuila. With a Hampton Inn and a Crown Plaza, both mostly empty (lavado de dinero? see above drug posts) humvee angencys and mercedes benz,(mas lavado de dinero?) it hardly qualifys as a cow town. But we do got a lot of cows, this being Leche Lalas homebase.
However theirs more chocolates, or undocumented cars (imgaine that!) than regular cars, or pretty much hovering around the same amount. Oh and perhaps their would be more hospitals and schools if drugs where taxed, instead of pocketed by all branches of the poltical spectrum, police, lawyers, prisions, PFP, ejercito, etc. etc. Oh and of course those fine fellows who go by the names of el azul, el chapo, vicente carrillo, etc etc. All keeping Mexico, floating in blood and money.
The Mexican Miracle continues......

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 11:47 PM

Read the immigration article, it is a good description of the tradgedy of poverty and immigration from Mexico to the United States.

The importance of the issue is why we must look for the real and tough solutions and not for the simple and easy solutions espoused by AMLO (vote for me and I will make all the poor people advance by spending government money on them). Where will he get the money from and what about the effects on interest rates, inflation, debt, and sustainability in the future? Why make the poor dependent rather than pass reforms to make Mexico more competitive?

WHY MUST AMLO DEMAND THAT NOBODY BUT HIM HELP REDUCE MEXICAN POVERTY?

Speaking as a Mexican born immigrant who was brought by his mother after the Mexican earthquake in Mexico City, I remember the mindset... the government is believed to control the future and provide all solutions. The president is believes to be the one who will make the people wealthy or poor.
I came here with the determination to better understand poverty, the wealth of nations and their people, what has worked, what hasn't. My economics and government majors and senior thesis centered on the topics. The basic truths are not easy for either the mexican poor, the foreign media, or the nation's elites (left or right) to understand. It is the classic struggle of right versus left that holds Mexico back. It is in part the view of government spending as the solution to all ills. It is the unwillingness to sacrifice today so that we may save and invest in a better tomorrow. It is the need to open up the economy and go through pain now so that we may advance, adapt, become flexico and strong and with a modern economy.

The politician knows these answers do not win elections, but the people can understand the need to sacrifice today for a better tomorrow. Mexicans want to work and have opportunity.
We want results but sometimes we have bet on the wrong answers.

Posted by: eljefejesus | September 4, 2006 11:50 PM

Jerryb
There was over 16thousand handgun murders in the USA alone last year, FBI numbers. Wow, what a peaceful lovable place!
With killings amounting to the size of small cities, you got to think, some ppl are not getting along. A virtual United Nation killing industry. What a country! Mexico, by far, is for my taste, much better, much safer, more peacefull more friendly and a lot less contaminated. U dont get spit on because of the color of your skin, and U dont have the promblems of drving while mexican that u have in some places in the USA. And for its size, france, germany, holland spain, italy, and even jolly old england are getting more immigrants each year than the USA, based on their population and size. U need to seriously take off them blinders, because its blinding u with a red white and blue haze.

Posted by: maya0 | September 4, 2006 11:54 PM

How does one deal with Islamic terrorists wha have stated:

"We are not trying to exact concessions from you. We are trying to eliminate you."

There is no middle ground, no way to start a dialogue. That is why we either take them on in war, or allow ourselves to ruled by a brutal faction. Do you agree with the execution of homosexuals. The repression of women, the rule of a law made in the 7th century. If so, support Islamic terrorist all you want. I have always believed the left strange partners in support of people with these world views.

Posted by: PeterN | September 4, 2006 11:54 PM

Maya, as far as AMLO, wasn't he the one who blocked the transparency law until the pressure was unbearable? Didn't he block civil unions that would benefit brothers or friends living together, homosexuals and other types of non-traditional families? There are other examples and those are precisely the reason we don't want him as president. The fact that he chickened out first because there was no way for him to come out on top doens't make him any better for occupying Reforma and the Zocalo. What? We're supposed to be grateful? Civil rights movement? How is that even comparable? Systematic and morally wrong laws discriminating against AMLO? Perhaps a colonial power occupying Mr. Andres Manuel "Titanic" Obrador's private little India? Convergencia has bailed out. The Senators have stopped confronting the PAN and qualified their attacks by saying they're against Fox, not the PAN. Looks like rats abandoning the ship.

About that mother jones article, do you really think we don't care about migrants? Come on, don't recede into the darkness again, we've given you credit, give us some too. The fact that we don't want to be "saved" by AMLO means nothing about our humanity, it just means we don't belive in him. You drank the koolaid, we haven't.

BTW, why the hell do you keep writing about the Mexican Miracle? That was over 40 years ago. Would you prefer to live back then, perhaps?

"Hasta la victoria siempre"... sheesh... what next? Seig AMLO? If you'd at least quote Madero or Juarez or someone who was actually respected that would be something else entirely.

As for the data in the post K.Vronna quotes its World Bank Data.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 12:09 AM

"But facts are facts" Why yes Maya, this is what we've all been saying all along. They will be ratified tomorrow morning. Long live facts.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 12:12 AM

el jefejesus
U should read about FDR, Franklin Delenor Roosevelt, who was from a rich background, nevertheless used goverment intervention to create jobs, to create the USA modern transit systum, truman finished that, along with esienhower. He created huge public works, that lifted the USA out of the depresion, and not only because of world war 2, but hey, that didnt hurt them also. Do u think that the plane or train, or even space exploration would have taken off if goverment didnt intervene in the USA? U should really read about FDR, and understand that some experts looked to AMLO to bring about a FDR kind of change to Mexico, to help lift up millions out of poverty, that by the private sector, is unable, or unwilling to do.
Ill give u a good local example, thou some ppl here frown on that and say its unfair to compare places, but, here in La Laguna, their is private buses. No public control over what is public transportation. U ever wonder what happens to all them old school buses in the USA? Yes sir, they all come down here and become blue smoke belching, monsters of mayhem on the streets. All privately owned. Why hasnt private bus transportation improved? Because theirs no money in that. U have bus drivers racing the streets trying to beat the competion, or the clock. Why is it that in capitalist USA, most cities, have socialist bus systums? The city owns the buses, the trains, they run efficently and they are true public trans. Yes its another example that the private sector doesnt always work for the common good. And the need for some form of goverment intervention can be positive. Its not always negative. Take the time to read about all sides, dont get confused by chants of goverment bad, private sector good. Because as stated above, its not always the case.

Posted by: maya0 | September 5, 2006 12:13 AM

Maya, I think I asked you this before, but if the US is such a crappy place, why were you so happy to go to the art institute of Chicago? As to the murder rate, please. The body count in every northern city makes the US numbers pale by comparison.(How this happens when guns are illegal I haven't the faintest idea, maybe someone forgot to tell the criminals)

No one I know has ever been "spit on" in the United States, and that includes a lot of people who are positively dark. On the other hand, with your charming personality, I don't doubt in the least that the Americans in Chicago spat all over you.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 5, 2006 12:14 AM

Maya, who is "Franklin Delanor Roosevelt"? If he is who I think he is, you ought to know enough history to know that what got the US out of the depression and "created jobs" was the massive rearmament effort beginning in the late 1930s in preperation for the second world war. (one way to deal with the unemployed is to put them all in the army)

Posted by: Jerry B | September 5, 2006 12:21 AM

"take off them blinders" Oh boy, horrendous grammar from someone attacking others for a silly little mistake while using the King's language? Ironic.

As for the one serious topic you've debated:

The sources for violence in the US are many, no point in defending them, but I guess you've seen Michael Moore's documentary Bowling for Columbine, right? I recall the statistic quoted there about Canada having more guns per capita than the US but far less murders or even plain robberies per capita. I'm not going to defend them as a peace loving country or a "melting pot" either, but this seems to be a rather weird argment after saying we're overrun by drugs and completely dependant on oil and remittances and THEN saying we're better off. If you ask 100 people wether they would prefer to live here or in the US, I bet you'd get 90% for the US.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 12:24 AM

You really are weird Maya, increadibly misguided rants followed by others with some good points. While I see your points about FDR, you have to acknowledge that the 2 bookends of FDR's rule make for extraordinary opportunities and challenges: The depression and WWII. We don't have anything remotely comparable to that, those policies may not necessarily apply and there are very few examples of similar policies working.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 12:28 AM

The USA allows 1,000,000 LEGAL immigrants a year into its country, along with probably the same amount of illegals. Most "immigration" in Europe is by people who have the right to change country (due to free movement of citizens under the European Union rules) they are not from unrelated countries economically, and are not immigrants, jolly old England also has relations with its previous Empire countries (now the Commonwealth) and people can also enter UK from those countries under a preferred scheme, depending on certain criteria. What the UK actually takes from countries not in either of these systems is relatively small, maybe 40,000 asylum seekers (people who have a reason to fear returning to their own country) of which most are phony. Since the UK takes the highest in all Europe, I can safely say that the USA allows far more immigrants into itself than any European country, and probably more than all combined, legal and illegal.

Posted by: PeterN | September 5, 2006 12:36 AM

The USA allows 1,000,000 LEGAL immigrants a year into its country, along with probably the same amount of illegals. Most "immigration" in Europe is by people who have the right to change country (due to free movement of citizens under the European Union rules) they are not from unrelated countries economically, and are not immigrants, jolly old England also has relations with its previous Empire countries (now the Commonwealth) and people can also enter UK from those countries under a preferred scheme, depending on certain criteria. What the UK actually takes from countries not in either of these systems is relatively small, maybe 40,000 asylum seekers (people who have a reason to fear returning to their own country) of which most are phony. Since the UK takes the highest in all Europe, I can safely say that the USA allows far more immigrants into itself than any European country, and probably more than all combined, legal and illegal.

Posted by: PeterN | September 5, 2006 12:43 AM

people, people, (and maya0, you dispoint me, I really though there was some hope for you)
FDR did not bring the US out of depression by spending, he merely tried to smooth it out via the theory of Keynsian economics. I give credit to JerryB and Ariel R for noting the fact that the depression (a low point in the omniprescent business cycle, but a particulary noticeable one) and world war II were forces that far outweighed anything FRD did himself. If you'll look at the year's of his presidency and the years of the great depression, you will see that his presidency did not end the great depression by it's policies during the 1930's... it kept going, and going, and going. The US had gone through the roaring 20's (1920's high growth rates) and the relatively inexperienced central bank responded to the stock market crash and dust bowl not by extending greater credit to smooth out the cycle, but rather by tightening credit further (rookies). Now days the FED knows better. FDR had a rich country's economy and did what John Maynard Keynes recommended to smooth out cycles: he increased spending during times of depression, decreased taxes, and increased borrowing (deficit spending), but the other side of the coin was the need to increase taxes, decrease spending, and pay down debt once out of the depression. The problem is, how often will a politician ever increase taxes, cut government spending, and pay down debt? Especially a politician like AMLO. See how the strategy makes a roller coaster ride smoother, but does not lift the country any higher? The same factors lead to real and sustainable growth per capita:
1) techological innovations and efficiencies
2) savings and investments (ideally at the goldemn mean where growth is maximized without overdoing it in either direction) that maintains a healthy level of new capital stock replacement. This means not always spending more than we take in. Borrowing is best done if it is put towards something productive so you can pay back the debt and come out with a profit for yourself as a person or as a country.
3) exports (you know, something to sell to the rest of the world if we plan on buying anything from the rest of the world)
4) stability to allow these things to work over time even as the business cycle has it's short term ups and downs. I am for smoothening out business cycles via both fiscal (spending and taxation) and monetary policy. However, remember this means cutting spending when we're not in a short term recission like in 95, 2001, etc. Right now, this means we should be cutting spending, not increasing it.

Posted by: eljefejesus | September 5, 2006 12:50 AM

We got carrots, bribes, and increased government overspending by the PRI for decades and got recessions and economic crisis. We elected Fox of the PAN and tried Democracy only to find that Democracy is still vulnerable to the politician with easy answers. We wanted Fox's policiies and the PRD and PRI blocked them. Now we voted for the PAN even more and the PRI even less. If the PRD makes us punish them for not letting us try new solutions, they should and ought to be punished. See their popularity plummet as Mexicans have decided to go again with a new vision that the international left is prejudiced again. Well we are the Mexicans who voted 2/3 for candidates other than AMLO and who now support Calderon over AMLO by an even wider margin than in the initial election. Let those ignorant of mexican politics or economic realities advocate government spending by leftist AMLO, so long as they do not intefear with the will of the Mexican people to try the new solutions involving economic reform. A little more like China, Korea, and Chile, dear Mexico, and a little less like Venezuela, Cuba, and Haiti. They immigrate in the last three countries and enjoy reductions in poverty in the first three. Let's be smart... and independent.

Posted by: | September 5, 2006 12:55 AM

Maya0 wrote:
Oh and Karim
"Demoacracy?" Wow, i bow to your efficent use of the kings tongue!

You should have written, "I bow to your proficient use of the king's tongue!" You know what they say about "glass houses" and all that. Karim should not have criticized your English, either. This is a blog where most of the comments seem to be posted by people who are not native English speakers. Y'all need to cut each other some slack. If you play nice, you will be more likely to be taken seriously. Look at Tex Drifter, even though he has been called, basically, an ignorant gringo bastard who should shut the hell up, he continues to post with utmost courtesy. Right or wrong, if everyone were like him, we'd probably live in a pretty decent world, since we would work out our differences peacefully. We would cycle through the different possible governmental and economic systems peacefully and patiently until we came upon the best solutions.

Karim wrote:

"If you study a bit on altruistic theory, you will find out that there is no such thing as 'compassion' or 'selfishness'. In fact most of the claims to compassion indirectly circles back to unconscious selfish motives."

As Chuang-tzu said, words exist because of meaning. What people mean by "compassionate" and "altruistic" is the opposite of what they mean by "sadistic" and "selfish". The rest is just word games. Haven't you ever met someone you thought was a selfish jerk? When people refer to someone who is "selfless", they are referring to someone who is the opposite in personality. People expect the "selfless" person to find joy in "compassion". In the common usage of the term (and of the idea), finding fulfillment or joy in altruistic acts does not negate its selflessness. Indeed, a lot of people would probably define an altruistic person as someone who finds joy in helping others. To say that the joy of the altruistic act negates its selflessness is to get caught up in words and miss the meaning.

Maya0 wrote:

"Oh, and about your lesson, and by that other chap, well, Mexicos sells around 3miilon and a half barrels a day. Why isnt their no growth here in Mexico? Maybe we need a Mexican Mickey Mouse?"

Others have already addressed this, but I'll add some figures (from http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/cabs/topworldtables1_2.html and http://www.world-gazetteer.com ).

Venezuela has about 25,307,565 people and exports 2.36 million barrels of oil per day (0.093 million barrels/day/person); very impressive! Mexico has about 105,149,952 people and exports 1.80 million barrels of oil per day (0.017 million barrels/day/person); much less impressive. Given these numbers (many other things contribute, of course, to the entire economic picture), which country will be most affected by changes in world oil prices? (Just FYI, total production figures in millions of barrels/day are 2.86 for Venezuela and 3.83 for Mexico, but export numbers are probably more relevant here.) We don't need a Mexican Mickey Mouse unless the Mouse does math.

By the way, why do so many on the Latin American far left think that the only alternative to crony capitalism is some sort of Castro-esque socialism/communism and a foreign policy antagonistic to the US? The problem is more the crony part than the capitalism part. Does anyone really think that it is bad for someone to be able to go out and sell his produce at a market or open a restaurant? If you want a more distributive but still vibrant economy where human rights are highly respected, why not look to the Swedens and Finlands of the world as models instead of Cuba and Venezuela. There seems to be a huge ignorance of the variety of systems in existence in the world, and this ignorance is exploited by demagogues who seek to gain power by stirring up people's hatred and violent instincts.

Also, though Sweden and Finland are huge welfare states with systems quite different than the US, no one thinks that the US is plotting against them. That's because the US, while it can be stupid or naïve, is not an evil monster. It's more like a big dog that growls only when it perceives a threat. And I'm not talking competitive economic threat, after all, our best friends politically are our fiercest competitors economically. But if you threaten regional or global stability, the dog starts to bark. And sometimes, in attacking the threat, the dog does a lot of harm to innocent bystanders, sometimes more harm than good.

And Maya0, if you insist on ending your posts with, "The Mexican Miracle continues....", I'm going to start ending my posts with "The great experiment has been performed! The mighty power of the communist economic miracle has been revealed! Down with the Capitalist Roaders." :-)

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 02:01 AM

Citing the high homicide rate by handgun in the US, Maya0 professed the great superiority of Mexico. I have no problem with people loving their home countries, I know I am partial to my far-off land, but please back up your assertions with numbers.

Murder rates:
US 1996 9.4/100,000
US 1997 7.3/100,000
Mexico 1996 17.5/100,000

http://www.gunsandammomag.com/second_amendment/rk0405/
These figures are supposedly derived from the UN 1996 Demographic Yearbook. Could someone check these stats or add more recent figures. I hate to rely on numbers from Guns and Ammo, but if these numbers are correct, Maya0's credibility isn't looking too good right now. Maybe she is Frida Kahlo's disciple, an artist from Mexico with very poor politics. Kahlo was a fervent supporter of Stalin for a long time, after all!

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 02:54 AM

Hey Maya0, what is the difference between a demagogue and a statistician? A demagogue divides the people, while a statistician divides by the number of people. To you and all the posters from Mexico, good luck to you and to your great country. Thank you for your emigrants who remind us every day of the value of hard work and self-reliance. Immigrants shame us into not becoming Lotus-Eaters. They help to keep this country strong in the most fundamental way.

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 03:01 AM

Hey, anyone ever wonder how such an anti-business candadate as AMLO got money to run his campaing? I am sure some not-so-poor leftists explain a portion of his funding... but wouldn't there have to be a very significant drug portion?
Just a thought.
After all, the man disregards the laws prohibiting a recount. He offers solutions that very few reasonable people would truly accept as real solutions.
I do remember AMLO supporting greater leniency towards criminals...
and the DF has been facing greater drug influence in recent years...
It is a nescessary issue in the election.

Journalists have made a good point on this as well:

'AMLO may be focused on criminal business activity, but a much greater concern for average Mexicans appears to be violent crime, namely the persistent drug wars and kidnappings that plague much of the country.

"The country of 106 million now has the second-highest incidence of kidnapping in the world, after Colombia. The most recent police figures for federal crimes show drug trafficking and weapons possession rose 12 per cent between 2001 and 2004," according to the Globe and Mail. "Felipe Calderón, a 43-year-old Harvard-educated lawyer and candidate for the ruling National Action Party, has promised to bring a mano firme (firm hand) to end the violence, and has called for life sentences for kidnappers. Mr. Calderón is tied in the polls with Andres Manuel López Obrador, the 53-year-old candidate for the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution, who believes that violence and crime must be fought with job creation and opportunities for the poor." '

Posted by: anonymous | September 5, 2006 03:24 AM

Maya0, 90% (approx. 60,000) of Iraqi civilians killed in Iraq, is by the hands of the Sunni and Shia ultra-right wing Islamists. Why is it that post-colonial leftists like yourself ignore such targetted atrocities (often accompanied by horrific torture) committed by the Islamists, and are only selectively outraged by untargetted deaths due to legitimate US actions in a war? The answer is because the leftist ideologically support the Islamic fascists and their program to destroy human rights in Iraq and the middle east.

Why DO YOU SUPPORT the death squad armies of Mahdi, Salafis, Badr, Hezbolla, and even the Baathists (national-socialists) may I ask? Why do the leftists support murderers that first drill in the brains of their victims, and ignore their atrocities which is 90% of all civilians killed in Iraq?

The post-colonial left has gone full circle and now supports religious fascism, in particular Islamic fascism. Chavez is paying Hezbolla ideologues to emigrate to western Venezuela (Guajira Peninsula) and using oil money, to construct mosques and madressas to brainwash local children to the gutter religion of Islam. And the morally deficient leftists support this fascistic act.

Your idiotic cartoon is designed to whitewash leftist support of Islamic atrocities in Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan. Nice try, but few enlightened and informed people will fall for that.

Posted by: Karim | September 5, 2006 06:09 AM

kt,

My comment on Maya was not about his writing skills, but on his inability to grasp the meaning of a simple concept. I would say "I will defend X in expressing his opinion"; and Maya would reply: "why are you intolerant of X having a differing opinion and try to silence him."

If you deconstruct claims to `compassion', you will find that it does not reduce to a simple case of "joy" on behalf of the provider. Most often you will find a calculated and subconscious course of action that will in some way benefit the compassion provider or his group. I will not bore you with countless examples. You further claim that simple "joy" should be excluded from the calculus. But why? Does not one perform an action in order to reap the joy? Is not enjoyment a benefit to the receiver? Trying to mystify this experience of joy, will not help this discussion, and only pushes the reckoning further down the road.

I miss how I am "getting caught up in words and missing the meaning." It appears to me that you are creating meaning out of thin air, reifying certain words (`joy'), and then once such concepts are created and endowed with powers that it does not possess, you complain that I have "missed" it. You even redefine the term "compassion" (as in "a lot of people define it such and such") in order to make it fit the bill.

Face it, if I take joy in helping others, then I am receiving a certain benefit - and this act may not be redefined. Just the fact that the interaction was a positive sum game, does not negate the fact that the giver or provider of compassion and the receiver of joy did benefit.

Your introduction of new fuzzily defined words and terminology ("selfless") is exactly what you are accusing me of doing - namely getting caught in words, while "missing the meaning". Can you not define "compassion" without resorting to further questionable and undefined words in a circular manner, or by appealing to normative behaviour ("people would think .....") that again leaves the concept shrouded in mystery, and the ethics of it still hanging in the air by its bootstraps?

No, let us not mystify fuzzy, often religious, concepts like compassion (easily abused by you know who - the morally deficient leftists who claim dominion over the poor). I need hard empirical reasoning in this argument and not poetics or psychologics.

Otherwise I fully agree with your excellent reply on oil and socialism. Maya is an ideologic troll/flamer with the typical intellect of the post-colonial left, and he should be ignored, IMO. But I am as guilty as the rest in feeding him.

Posted by: Karim | September 5, 2006 06:10 AM

karim,

Have you signed up at:

http://arielorellana.net/forums/index.php

Please go there and register. We need your learned ranting in case Ceci's blog kaputs like it did a few days ago.

On the other hand, do not interfere with mayaO and his/her rantings. You cannot dismiss this exultum postulator as a lefty knownothing. Au contraire, mon capitan: he is of the people. A ranting, street-level, front line,spear-heading cannon fodder, all or nothing hear my roar, truth telling brave individual.

She used to be commanding general and supreme god of all WPost blogger heavens. She demoted herself to "average" ranter for no other reason that he/she ran out of
who knows what. After all, Near Deities are allowed their downs because we rejoice in their ups.

mayaO used to rule this domain like a lion among scowling sheep. A big-time gorilla among wild running organ grinder capuchines.

Do not provoke this sleeping volcano, he/she will fascinate you, pounce on you with mighty flair and leave you running scared for life and property. You would not want this Pancho Villa visiting your peaceful Eagle Pass village, this mindless assumption that you are safe from total destruction. That you can compete with an enraged mayaO is fancy speculation. Tread lightly before her presence she will squash your opinionating with his thunder.

Karim, my dear, you have been adverted.

mayaO,
I personally invite you to register at Orellana's and join the ranting locos. Look for the "political forums".

Posted by: rodolfo | September 5, 2006 08:27 AM

Karim, I think you miss my point. Words have definitions informed by their use. In defining a word, what is meant by speakers of the language is more important than the etymology of the word itself. Words are merely symbols, after all. To constrain definitions narowly because one doesn't like the fuzziness of emotion and psychology is to put words in straitjackets; it is unnatural. Emotions are poorly defined, difficult to understand, and decidedly not rational. Yet they are very important. After all, happiness, which is the thing that most people are trying hardest to obtain, is an emotion. A "fuzzy" term or not, such a thing as happiness exists and discussion of happiness is legitimate. One could argue that happiness is a useless term because all emotions are simply the result of neurochemistry, sort of a materialist nihilism (...or would that be nihilistic materialism?), but such an arguement has no practical value. ("Why should I want to be happy, because what does "happiness" really mean anyway? Why should I care if anyone else is happy? Our lives are mathematically meaningless.") People may not be able to give you answers to all of your philosophical questions, but this does not mean that they should abandon words which are symbols for concepts which have been proven by their own experience to be useful. So I say again, the term "altruistic" as used in normal conversation does not preclude the subject receiving some benefit, such as happiness; and indeed, the deriving of joy from the aiding of another would be considered by most to be a hallmark of an altruistic person. When a child refuses to share a toy with a friend, we call this selfish, but when he happily shares his toys, we call this unselfish even though (indeed, because) he finds happiness in sharing. This is what is meant by these words. We're talking about normal life here, no need to make it more complicated than it is. Should we also consider any talk of "love" of a parent for a child to be illegitamate because such emotion is simply the manifestation of selfish genes competing for survival? Such an analysis may or may not be correct, but it is irrelevant to normal life, (though the Khmer Rouge might have appreciated such an analysis.) Similarly, the fact that people who have read "The Fountainhead" recently and a few angry libertarians find the word, "selfless," to be philosophically unsupportable has litte bearing on normal life. This is a commonly used word. If you don't like it, your problem is not with me but with the English speaking world. Just ignore the etymologies and derive the definitions of these words from usage. For example, you could say, "Unselfish, selfless, or altruistic are adjectives used to describe acts motivated only by the desire to see good done to the recipient, and not by a desire for personal material gain or public adulation, though the giver is allowed to experience joy or satisfaction in seeing the good that has been accomplished and still fall within this definition." If the word, "selfless," still bothers you because darn it, if there is no self, there can be no action (I'm being facetious), then in your mind, just substitute another word, like oogabooga, as in the sentence, "The mother oogaboogaly sacrificed her life for her child." To quote Steve Irwin (rest in peace, Steve-o), "Crikey!" And here I thought that rational egoism was as outdated as communism... Somewhere, Ayn Rand and Karl Marx are looking down at you and Maya0 and are feeling happy that someone is still "listening to their albums." :-0

And to be fair to the Maya0's of the world, one can support the rights of people without supporting the actions of their most violent proponents. For example, it is possible to support the rights of indigenous Americans and to understand their legitimate greivances without supporting the killing of the infants of settlers in the North American west by some armed bands in the 1800's. Similarly, when we say we support democracy, we are not saying that we support the excesses of the French revolution. Assigning the worst possible motivations to others isn't going to get us anywhere.

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 09:58 AM

kt,

Spacey but confusing enough to earn a place in my withering wrath.

Ayn Randesque, but no cigar. Marxist up to a point, really foggy blabber.

Only and but only mayaO is allowed big fat paragraphs that have no beggining, middle or ending. mayaO is king of this mountain, he/she rules with determined abandon and screech and howl as she may, makes sense to me. You read too much or not enough.

Simplicity is the trick, do not pretend to know anything.

We endorse Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, Buda, Confucius, Dante, Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Twain, Thoreau, Emerson and Marco Polo.

Your minor authors leave us hollow.

Where's the meat, if you follow.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 5, 2006 10:42 AM

kt, dude, wow. I wish I had your clarity.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 11:46 AM

Rodolfo,
Sorry if I was not sufficiently clear for you. I'm not the one espousing the tenets of Marx or Rand. Karim's argument against such terms as "compassion" and "altruism" come right out of the Ayn Rand playbook. Maya0 and company's rants are the same sort of things we've been hearing from Marxists for years. Neither philosophy has worn well over time. Your calling Rand a "minor author" only helps to prove my point. For you classic rockers, not even Neal Peart is a Rand adherent anymore. The last few decades have shown the folly of both Marxism and rational egoism, at least imho.

In order for your "wrath" to qualify as "withering", it needs to understand, and then convincingly address, the points made by its object. Otherwise, what you are left with is more "rant" than "wrath". Ranting is a kind of sport, and is popular on both ends of the political spectrum. But it causes the quality of discourse, notwithstanding your name-dropping of a long list of generally respected writers and philosophers, to be disturbingly close to that of people who call in to AM radio talk shows in the US. Ranting does not engender trust. On the other hand, Tex Drifter, who does not rant, attracts trust because (s)he seems reasonable. In the current Mexican crisis, we're hearing a lot of ranting. Wouldn't a Tex Drifter approach by both sides be more productive?

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 12:07 PM

People, legally this subject is over. Our new elected president, legal and legitimate, is Felipe Calderón, whether we like it or not. Period.

Now we have to wait and see what AMLO is going to do next.

Posted by: bunburina | September 5, 2006 01:22 PM

I agree-- The legal part and the debate over a recount is all over now, for better or worse. Note, however, that Magistrate Fuentes says the tribunal could not do the 100 percent recount because the PRD failed to contest all those casillas! In other words, the PRD was out on the streets crying,"voto por voto," while their lawyers inside the tribunal failed to do what was necessary to ask for that.

Now, they might say there was insufficient grounds to challenge all the actas, so they did not follow that path-- Yes! That is the point! Why claim the need to check all the votes and then admit through your legal challenge that not all the votes need to be recounted?

But the waters have been muddied and Little Lopez will continue to attract throngs who follow his dimming light.

Posted by: Goyo | September 5, 2006 02:09 PM

kt,

Rhetoric aside, your Sep.5 9:58 AM entry is unreadable.

Airy zeppelins such as your posting mystify me. There are some of us here that don't have highschool diplomas. I can understand Ceci's blog posting, although lenghthy it is fun to read and illuminating. Tex needs grammatical polish and syntax refurbushing.

You can bloviate as you see fit. Just make it fun to read not a chore.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 5, 2006 02:12 PM

Paco, in your post:
Posted by: fco. | September 3, 2006 04:51 AM

you said:

"Unfortunately, I just received word that the majority of the magistrates oppose anullment by abstract causes. However, I can assure you of one thing: IT WILL NOT BE AN UNANIMOUS DECISION."

How do you like your crow? Fried or roasted?

Posted by: | September 5, 2006 03:16 PM

Rodolfo wrote: Rhetoric aside, your Sep.5 9:58 AM entry is unreadable.

Then please feel free to ignore it. It has nothing to do with the main subject at hand. It's just a little side conversation about a philosophy of which Ayn Rand was the best known exponent. If you have no interest in it, my comments will no doubt seem tedious. In fact, this tediousness of the Rand argument is exactly my point. I wouldn't be interested in Ayn Rand either had hers not been such an influential philosophy. But back to the news of the day...

Mexico, congratulations on getting through the legal process! Good luck with the process of post-electoral resolution. Nations are built not just of laws, but also of traditions. Hopefully, what happens now will become part of a tradition of conciliation and mutual respect that will further strengthen Mexico.

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 03:20 PM

More likely, steamed.

Posted by: kt | September 5, 2006 03:22 PM

That last post was mine, I should sit down at the table and eat, not run around checking the net and eat at the same time. Sorry.

Fco, this is good natured ribbing, no offense intended.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 5, 2006 03:23 PM

Top 10 reasons why Calderon is the best choice for Mexico:

1. First and foremost, Calderon will make sure that Mexico continues the trend set out by Echeverria, Lopez Portillo, De la Madrid, Salinas and Fox. What trend is that? The trend of a long list of accomplishments occurred in the last 30 yrs. of PRI-PAN government.

2. Calderon will make sure that 50% of Mexicans remain with an income of less than $1 dollar a day.

3. Calderon will make sure that the exodus of millions of unemployed Mexicans continue going to the USA.

4. Calderon will make sure that the lack of gains in science and technology occurred during the Echeverria, Lopez Portillo, De La Madrid, Salinas and Fox continue.

5. Calderon will make sure that Mexico remains a 3rd world country.

6. Calderon will make sure that none of the participants of the bank frauds committed every sexenio are brought to justice.

7. Calderon will make sure that the Durazos, Hank Gonzalez and Salinas are able to steal with absolute impunity.

8. Calderon will make sure that the income and social disparities between the Mexican north and south increase.

9. Calderon will make sure that millions of young Mexicans have limited access to quality education.

10. There has been absolutely no improvement in the living conditions in Mexico for the past 30 yrs. But thank God we have Calderon to maintain the status quo.

God bless you.

Posted by: Top 10!!! | September 5, 2006 03:28 PM

We should save those repetitive Top 10 posts and keep tabs on them. We can pester the the PRD, if its still in one peace, in 6 years.

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 03:54 PM

Heh... "piece"

Posted by: Ariel R. Orellana | September 5, 2006 04:05 PM

Ariel,

This rant will bring tears to your eyes:

http://blogs.salon.com/0001330/categories/rrModels/

Click on the "Benford's Law" link.

Posted by: rodolfo | September 5, 2006 04:10 PM

New Ceci blog.

Posted by: K. Vronna | September 5, 2006 05:14 PM

Ok, let's don't be naïve and think this is it, the judges might have said their last word, which didn't change a bit from expected, but the people will have the last word, the problem of PAN, including Calderón, and PRI is that they have the control of the formal and "institutional" decision-making mechanisms, but they don't actually have the majority of the people, they know that and that's why they didn't want a full recount, in 9% of the votes recounted they found 120 thousand votes missing or extra in the boxes, for example boxes that were supposed to have 500 ballots at the recount had only 400 or 450 or 470, officialist version says that people took those ballots home, that many? incredible, but where they don't have an explaination is when instead of the supposed 500 ballots they found 550 or 600, what did they say then? nothing, there is no legal explaination of that, this elections stinks of fraud, and of imposition by the vested interests groups that don't want to lose all their privileges, they are sucking the country's blood, and don't want that to change, well, back to the point, this is far from over, September 16 will be an important day in the country's history, institutions have to serve the people and respect them, if they don't people don't have to respect institutions either, since they have lost their original purpose, what we need is a revolution, it doesn't have to be a violent one, but we definitively need to change this status quo that is bleeding the country, I'm a volunteer for this revolution, and I know many more, López Obrador is only the tip of a huge iceberg, don't mistake this movement as a something that will be over in one week or one month, not even one year, don't mistake López Obrador for a crazy messiah with megalomaniac ideas, cause u'r wrong, this is much more than that, this is a deep movement that it will change the way we do politics in Mexico, Fox just said that there is no problems in Mexico, that it is only one street in Mexico City, Governor of Oaxaca said some weeks ago that there were no problems in Oaxaca, that it was only a small group of noisy teachers protesting, well, you should see how Oaxaca is now, this is just beginning, be on that.

Posted by: zapatavive | September 5, 2006 05:16 PM

maya0, come to ariel's spot, sign up

Posted by: Tex Drifter | September 6, 2006 04:17 AM

Top 10 reasons why AMLO would have been the best choice for Mexico:

1. AMLO's type of radicalization of politics has made countries like Nicaragua climb near first place in the ranking of poorest countries in Latin America, even ahead of Bolivia. It is good to be best at something. Haiti look out below.

2. AMLO is making his base feel better about their loss. They didn't really lose, it was a conspiracy of election-duty citizens, PRD poll watchers, international observers, and most especially voters who did not want AMLO. What is more presidential than representing all Mexicans who share your party affiliation and political believes? Viva the party loyalist president.

3. He is the only politician brave and intelligent enough to propose massive government spending as the "new" solution to poverty... just like the Russian Communists, Nicaraguan Commmunists, and Angolan Communists before him (and until the last 20 years when they started growing with capitalist policies, the Chinese Communists). Viva la revolucion del pasado.

4. Respect for laws against recounts in places lacking proof of fraud, against judges that interpret those laws, and against presidents that execute those laws... who needs that kind of respect when people believe AMLO is saving democracy (from itself).

5. He is doing in Mexico what no major party candidate has ever done in the US - threaten revolution if his defeat is ratified. Surely some country needs presidential candidates like that. Does yours? Certainly AMLO can help train your country's politicians to be just like the Mexican far left's candidate.

6. AMLO will stop the boring stability of the last decade that has allowed the Mexican middle class to reappear and replace it with the sort of rhetoric that creates millions of jobs. Mexico has long had policiticians that made lofty promises to the poor and any voter that is stupid enough to continue to believe their politician's to-good-to-be-true promises... probably deserves them as their politician.

7. A nation that has already gained modern jobs, foreign reserves, and wealth in the northern states from trade with the United States needs a politicians who will change the relationship with the United States to a confrotational one.

8. A nation that has long-suffered from threat of rebellion by radicals needs someone to represent them as president with threats of revolution.

9. A nation that has long suffered with chronic unemlpoyment needs a champion for state ownership of enterprise which countries like England stopped supporting so as to lower unemployment and the crowding out of private sector job growth and credit.

10. A nation with fledgling democratic institutions needs a President to challenge their legitimacy.

Posted by: eljefejesus | September 10, 2006 06:11 AM

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