Monthly Archives: August 2006

Days Before ‘El Grito’

If you have lived in this country long enough, you will know that each September, the president stands on the balcony of the presidential palace and does the ‘el grito‘ ceremony, which is a solemn yet joyous act whereby the Mexican populace is reminded of their revolutionary roots by the President who shouts (thereby comes the term ‘el grito‘) things in a revolutionary manner from the aforementioned balcony.

I don’t want to get into whether I think this is a good idea or not, or even the actual text of what the President is supposed to gritar – it’s not my place to criticize the customs of a country still caught up in the revolution, complete with images and songs about cannons, horses and the like – in this particular diatribe.

No, here I am wondering how this time the event will prove to be most interesting since we will have two presidents! The deluded Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador – most likely to lose the past presidential election – has declared that on the night in question he will have a huge meeting in the zócalo in Mexico City where he will singlehandedly, unilaterally (and, I would suggest, unanimously) declare himself President of Mexico. This is exciting because Mexico already has a president and his name is Fox. So there will be a face-off of sorts in the plaza that night; Lopez Obrador shouting to the country that he is the president and that the elections were a fraud, and Fox Quesada shouting “Viva Morelos, Viva Mexico” at the top of his lungs from the balcony.

Who will win the shouting match? It promises to be an interesting night.

These are interesting times we live in… keep your eyes and ears open.

Oaxaca and Mexico City / Mob Rule in Mexico

I have lived in Mexico for some time now, and it is amazing to me how this country cannot move forward. Or maybe it is and I haven’t noticed; the times we are living in, are the baby steps (complete with leaky, shit-filled diapers) the country is taking in the direction of a true democracy.

Excuse me – I had to laugh while I wrote that last line.

The situation in Oaxaca, where a screaming militant mob disguised as a teachers union has taken over the city center until their demands to negotiate with the federal government are met, is completely over the top. They will not negotiate at the state level and would like the governor removed, thank you very much. Maybe they would enjoy a non-fat latté with that order? Anyone living in Oaxaca or wanting to visit the city are prevented from visiting the city center thanks to these hooligans who may or may not be justified in their demands. The fact is, they are affecting the interests of many many other people who have nothing to do with their protest. The owners of businesses in downtown Oaxaca are unable to open, since there is no one to open for, besides the protesters. This has been going on for over 80 days now. No one has done anything. The governor is either incompetent, impotent or an idiot. I suspect maybe all three.

Not to be outdone, in Mexico City, the thugs, goons and all those lazy shits who prefer protesting to actually getting a job have been hired by the second place presidential candidate, Andres Manuel Lope Obrador (PRD) to blocking entire avenues in the nation’s capital. Hotels, restaurants and other businesses are suffering, as are all the people who have jobs in the area. No pedestrians or cars can enter the Reforma zone and the protest has spread to other areas as well, including banks and toll road booths leading in and out of the city. One of the largest cities in the world is becoming a parking lot, thanks to a few misguided militant mudslingers holding it’s 24 million inhabitants ransom.

My question is this: where in the hell are the laws in this country? Is there no law that says that blocking streets to effect a protest is illegal? In Mexico City there is one, put into place by a former mayor of Mexico City by the name of… get this: Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. This guy, AMLO, is the Master of Cynicism. The current ‘elected’ mayor of the city is a Lopez Obrador crony (also PRD) who has refused to move the protesters since this would be considered ‘repression’. So much for the rule of law. It’s mob rule.

And the federal government has not intervened – not in Mexico City, not in Oaxaca – since that would make them seem ‘repressive’ and that the situations in both cases are state issues that have nothing to do with the federal government. I wonder if anyone in the federal government has any balls whatsoever or were they all castrated before moving into Los Pinos?

What a crock of shit. If a state governor cannot (or will not) act in favor of ALL the citizens of his or her jurisdiction, then there must be a mechanism by which a higher authority – in this case the federal government – steps in to restore order.

President Fox has tried to limit his interference in state and local issues, preferring to let the system deal with these as they arise. This is probably good in a democracy. But a democracy must have that mechanism mentioned in the previous paragraph. Can he just sit idly by as millions of dollars are lost each day and thousand remain unable to work or freely move about their cities? So he hides behind his position of ‘I don’t want to go down as a repressive Presidente‘. Well gues what Vicente? You are going down in history as the most useless, ineffectual and ‘most given to making idiotic declarations’ of all Presidentes. I mean, Zedillo was pretty lame. But your presidency takes the cake.

As you can tell by this rant, it pisses me off to no end that the Mexican politicians in power right now are so chicken-shit and unable to restore the rule of law. There is no law in Mexico right now. If you get enough people together, you can do whatever the hell you want. No one will interfere since they don’t want to appear ‘repressive’ and use that excuse to hide behind their cowardice.

Viva Mexico!