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Our incredible shirking presidente

28 July 2015

Peña Nieto’s magical thinking is that things will go away if you don’t talk about them. He’s wrong.

Jorge Ramos in Fusion on “Mexico’s paralyzed president

[…]

Three crises have marked Peña Nieto’s presidency: the massacre of the Ayotzinapa students; the accusations of corruption about the house that his wife bought from a government contractor; and the escape of drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera. In all three cases, Peña Nieto has shrunk – and refused to face the music.

It’s a very peculiar style of governing. Instead of handling a crisis, he hides. Instead of looking for solutions, he makes excuses. Instead of acting as a leader and assuming responsibility, he sends others to speak on his behalf.

[…]

Peña Nieto’s magical thinking is that things will go away if you don’t talk about them. He’s wrong. He doesn’t like to talk about the drug-related violence, but since he took office, more than 40,000 Mexicans have been killed, according to official data. Peña Nieto and his advisors think they are back in 1968 or 1988, when leaders were able to hide reality by keeping silence or censoring the media. That’s not the case anymore. The social media overwhelm them, and courageous Mexican journalists denounce abuses. And the international media won’t let the leaders lie.

The least we can ask from a president is to preside, to be accountable and not to hide. Facing a series of crises in Mexico, Peña Nieto has been a paralyzed president – almost irrelevant.

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