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Takedown of the week… er.. month…er… year

14 July 2019

Francisco Goldman on the latest travesty (“López Obrador’s cost-cutting spree is transforming Mexico — and drawing blowback from bureaucrats“) in the Washington Post:

The Washington Post is always so inept and slanted whenever they write about Mexico.

” Enrique Peña Nieto was so stylish that the famed Beverly Hills boutique Bijan designed a wristwatch in his honor. But his term was stained by scandal, including his wife’s purchase of a $7 million mansion from a government contractor.” Oh yes, that’s all that was wrong with that government, a little bit of that scandal stain, a mansion, and so was that the worst of it, then? The mansion? What are they going to write when EPN ends up in jail, what wristwatch will they design for him then? Always count on this kind of journalist to trot out Castañeda when they write one of these dummy pieces.

“It’s a vision that goes well beyond fiscal austerity, said Lorenzo Meyer, a prominent historian here.

“The whole idea of Mexico is different,” said Meyer, who supports the president.” This quote is funny, it’s posed like it’s supposed to make the reader wonder, Hmm, what’s he smoking. But the reporter did feel obligated to get into the piece that yes, the whole idea of Mexico is different, which is what AMLO campaigned on.

As a smart Mexican journalist friend put it to me the other day, AMLO is the best thing this government has going for it. AMLO is also the worst thing it has going for it. But, you know, did Peña Nieto’s government have anything actually good for it, besides his ability to inspire wristwatches and gushing USA headlines about being Mexico’s savior? Does the US president have anything good going for him? Does Guatemala’s president have anything good going for him? So, you know, even accepting the truthfulness of a seemingly a backhanded compliment, a president being the best thing a government has going for it does suggest that some interesting and worthy things are going on. (And also suggests that there are problems too; among those problems are rabid supporters who won’t accept any criticism of their leader and troll critical voices, including in the media, I’m sure which sounds familiar to an American reader.)
Of course this government is only 7 months old. It’s not easy, trying to “change Mexico,” especially when you inherited a mess like the new government did, and have to deal with the malevolent and incompetent bully to the north. As far as I can tell after just 6 weeks being back here, some things seem to be going well, others not so well. But the priorities speak for themselves, some of them mentioned (more or less dismissively, such as, you know, trying to shift spending to help the poor) in the article. Peña Nieto’s zillionaire lawyer buddy Collado was arrested on money laundering charges this week (Peña fled to Madrid, where he was said to be hiding out in that lawyer’s mansion — another mansion!), and people close to the government say this is just the start of what promises to be a tough, long and riveting legal fight against Mexico’s corrupt political mafia (Salinas, etc). The international judicial experts drummed out of the country in 2016 for coming too close to the truth in their investigations of the missing 43 Ayotzinapa students praise the new commission that has been established to investigate the case. A lot of people voted for AMLO because they wanted a government willing to take on the crisis of corruption and impunity — something Mexico has never had before, certainly not in the governments and government circles a creature of old Mexican establishment power like Castañeda moves in. (Castañeda, who when we were interviewed on the ludicrous Charlie Rose show, called me a conspiracy theorist when I said the 43 hadn’t been burned in the Cocula dump; he’s so lucky the episode didn’t air.)

Mexico needs to be reported on in a serious way. This is shallow slanted tripe. As usual.

One Comment leave one →
  1. 15 July 2019 11:16 pm

    This blog was… how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I’ve found something which helped me.
    Many thanks!

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