Tag Archives: Mexico

U.S. has “moral responsibility to reduce the flow of [drug] money towards Mexico” —Felipe Calderón, President of Mexico

The Mexican president who put the Mexican Army onto the streets to stop the drug war, resulting in 40,000+ deaths, many collateral damage like the son of writer Carlos Fuentes, the Mexican president who a year ago started hinting that that didn’t work and something else should be done, is already following the path of his predecessors Ernesto Zedillo and Vicente Fox, in calling for the U.S. to end the war on drugs. Georgia can’t afford to continue spending a billion dollars a year to lock people up, especially while cutting education. If we listen to the Mexican presidents, we can save much of that billion and spend much of the savings on education.

T.W. wrote for the Economist 23 November 2012, “Impossible” to end drug trade, says Calderón,

In an interview recorded last month for this week’s special report Felipe Calderon, President of Mexico on Mexico, Mr Calderón said: “Are there still drugs in Juárez [a violent northern border city]? Well of course, but it has never been the objective…of the public-security strategy to end something that it is impossible to end, namely the consumption of drugs or their trafficking…

“[E]ither the United States and its society, its government and its congress decide to drastically reduce their consumption of drugs, or if they are not going to reduce it they at least have the moral responsibility to reduce the flow of money towards Mexico, which goes into the hands of criminals. They have to explore even market mechanisms to see if that can allow the flow of money to reduce.

“If they want to take all the drugs they want, as far as I’m concerned let them take them. I don’t agree with it but it’s their decision, as consumers and as a society. What I do not accept is that they continue passing their money to the hands of killers.”

The Economist article spelled out what Calderón still doesn’t quite say:

Continue reading

the relatives of those people don’t care who is winning (the drug war) —Carlos Fuentes

A writer of fiction tells the truth about the failed war on drugs. We’re way past the beginning and middle of this story: time to end it. Which makes this a very bad time to build a private prison that depends on the war on drugs.

Anita Singh wrote for the Telegraph today, Carlos Fuentes: legalise drugs to save Mexico,

Fuentes, Mexico’s greatest writer and a former diplomat, addressed the contemporary problems of Latin American — in particular, Mexico’s drug problem.

He said: “The drug traffickers are in Mexico, they send the drugs to the US and once they get across the border what happens? We don’t know who consumes them. We can’t prosecute, we can’t defend. It’s a very difficult situation for us Mexicans. The governments of the US and Mexico have to fight drug trafficking together.”

Fuentes believes that decriminalising drugs is the only way to end the violence that in the past five years has claimed nearly 50,000 lives of gang members, security forces and innocent bystanders.

“It is a confrontation. Sometimes we win, sometimes they win. But there are 50,000 killed and the relatives of those people don’t care who is winning.

Nobody is winning except the profiteers in arms and pesticides, such as Monsanto. And even mighty MON is losing to Boliviana negra. Alcohol prohibition produced Al Capone and other gangsters; the failed War on Drugs produced drug gangs and ever more vicious militarization of police forces, right up to the Mexican failed “solution” of calling out the Army into the streets.

We’re all losing through lack of money for education and militarization of our own police. We can’t afford this costly failed experiment. The real solution is the same today as in 1933: legalize, regulate, and tax. That will also drop the U.S. prison population way down, saving a lot of money that can be used for education. It’s going to happen eventually, so building more prisons that will end up being closed is a bad idea.


Calderón contra la Guerra de las Drogas?

Juan Carlos Hidalgo wrote for Cato 20 September 2011, Calderón Hints at Drug Legalization Again,
Mexican President Felipe Calderón seems to be experiencing a dramatic change of mind regarding his war against drug cartels. Soon after a drug gang set fire to a casino in Monterrey a few weeks ago killing 52 people, Calderón told the media that ”If [the Americans] are determined and resigned to consuming drugs, they should look for market alternatives that annul the stratospheric profits of the criminals, or establish clear points of access that are not the border with Mexico.” Many people interpreted that as a veiled reference to drug legalization.
The referenced story by Julian Miglierini 1 September 2011 for BBC News also said the Mexican president went farther: Monterrey attack: Game-changer in Mexico’s drugs war?
Hours after it took place, the president described it “as an abhorrent act of terror and savagery” and later said the authors were “true terrorists”.
When you think about the billions or trillions the U.S. and other countries spend against terrorists who cause less damage than the Mexican drug cartels, he could be indicating that priorities are misdirected.

The Cato article says Calderón has now gone further: Continue reading

Hitting the cartels where it hurts

Former border state governor advocates ending drug prohibition.

Gary Johnson, former governor of New Mexico, wrote in the Washington Times 5 August 2011, JOHNSON: Hitting the cartels where it hurts: Legalization of marijuana would end drug profiteering and violence

Imagine you are a drug lord in Mexico, making unfathomable profits sending your illegal product to the United States. What is the headline you fear the most? “U.S. to build bigger fence”? “U.S. to send troops to the border”? “U.S. to deploy tanks in El Paso”? No. None of those would give you much pause. They would simply raise the level of difficulty and perhaps cause you to escalate the violence that already has turned the border region into a war zone. But would they stop you or ultimately hurt your bottom line? Probably not.

But what if that drug lord opened his newspaper and read this: “U.S. to legalize and regulate marijuana”? That would ruin his day, and ruin it in a way that could not be fixed with more and bigger guns, higher prices or more murder.

As a Republican, he manages to say legalize and regulate but forget to mention tax, and he didn’t mention Jimmy Carter or Javier Sicilia calling for an end to the drug war, but he did mention (I added the links): Continue reading

HB 87 getting press in Mexico

Famous not just in France, but also in Mexico! Georgia’s HB 87 gets press south of the border.
El Universal of Mexico City reported from Atlanta 27 June 2011, Juez bloquea partes de ley migratoria de Georgia
Un juez federal concedió este lunes la solicitud de impedir que partes de la ley de Georgia contra la inmigración ilegal entren en vigor hasta que se resuelva una demanda.

El juez Thomas Thrash bloqueó partes de la legislación que penaliza a la gente que transporte o albergue a indocumentados, y también detuvo las cláusulas que le autorizan a los agentes verificar el estatus migratorio de alguien que no pueda proporcionar una identificación adecuada.

Además, el magistrado sobreseyó partes de la demanda a solicitud del estado.

La mayoría de las cláusulas que forman la ley iban a entrar en vigor el 1 de julio.

Grupos activistas por las libertades civiles habían interpuesto una demanda en la que le pedían al juez que declarara inconstitucional la legislación e impidiera que entrara en vigor.


In case you have not emulated Mayor Paul Bridges of Uvalde and learned Spanish, here’s google translate’s version in English:
A federal judge on Monday granted the request to prevent parts of the Georgia law against illegal immigration to take effect pending resolution of a lawsuit.

Judge Thomas Thrash blocked parts of the legislation that penalizes people who transport or shelter illegal immigrants, and also stopped the clauses that authorize agents to verify the immigration status of someone who can not provide proper identification.

In addition, the judge dismissed portions of the demand at the request of the state.

Most of the clauses that make up the law to go into effect on July 1.

Groups civil liberties activists had filed a lawsuit in which he asked the judge to declare unconstitutional legislation and prevent the entry into force.


Pithy but factual.

We don’t need to feed the incarceration machine with a private prison in Lowndes County Georgia that will profit private prison executives and investors at the expense of Georgia taxpayers and Georgia farmers. Spend that tax money on rehabilitation and education instead.


Solar cookers at Lowndes County Courthouse?

John Charles Griffin sent me this: Mexico’s Solar Energy Taco Stands:
In Oaxaca, Mexico taco street vendors are using the solar energy from the sun to cook their tacos. This is being done as part of a project run by Michael Gotz who is trying to find to what degree they can transform the use of solar energy.
This would be great at stalls at Downtown Valdosta Farm Days at the historic Courthouse: practical cooking and marketing for solar Valdosta and Lowndes County!

More about Michael Götz.


U.S. drug war afflicts Latin America and rebounds on U.S.

The war on drugs causes violence, poverty, and illiteracy in Latin America that drives illegal immigration into the U.S., for the profit of Monsanto, military contractors, and private prison companies. Does that seem right to you?

Neal Peirce wrote a syndicated column 22 May 2011, Misguided U.S. drug policies afflict Mexico, Central America:

The war on drugs in Mexico, partially funded by hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. government assistance, has not only failed to curb the trade but intensified horrific violence, corruption and human rights abuses, writes Neal Peirce.

For most Americans, the recent news of popular demonstrations in Mexico was probably a small diversion from the daily tide of bloody global reports from such faraway hot spots as Pakistan, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan and Bahrain.

Why worry, most of us likely concluded, if thousands of Mexicans are marching in the streets, protesting the horrific violence and high death toll in their nation’s raging drug war? Isn’t that their problem?

It’s true, the news reports focus less on the American role, more on growing anger with the government of President Felipe Calderón and the meager returns from the massive police and military crackdown on the drug trade he inaugurated in 2006.

Since then, more than 37,000 Mexicans have been murdered, often tortured and brutalized before their deaths, as cartels battle for control of drug smuggling routes and brazenly assassinate anyone, official or average citizen, they think is in their way.

The hard lesson is that the war on drug dealers, decreed by Calderón and partially funded by hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. government assistance, has not only failed to curb the trade but intensified horrific violence, corruption and human-rights abuses.

So what can be done? Continue reading

Cairo in Mexico City

The U.S. media paid little attention to Mexico’s Arab moment: Protesters demand the resignation of Mexico’s top drug war official.
But while such stories have become tragically common in Mexico, this was the first time the mourners could vent their grief in front of tens of thousands of sympathizers and TV cameras from across the world.

And in this media spotlight, the protesters made a new demand — amid the failure of the government to provide security, they cried, the Public Safety Secretary Genaro Garcia Luna must resign.

“We don’t want more dead. We don’t want more hate,” protest leader Javier Sicilia told the crowd. “President Felipe Calderon — show you are listening to us, and make the public safety secretary resign.”

The demand announced at Sunday’s rally gave a new edge to a movement that has been steadily rising amid the massacres and mass graves of Mexico’s drug war.

Up until then, protesters had come out with a mix

Continue reading

To the Armed Forces of Mexico —Javier Sicilia

50,000 people marched in Cuernavaca 6 April 2011 to the gates of a military base, where the usual military guards were nowhere to be seen. Then a poet, whose son had recently been killed by the drug war, climbed up and said:
To the Armed Forces of Mexico
You have always been the custodians of peace for our nation
That’s why we never want to see you again,
outside of your barracks,
except to defend us from foreign invasion,
or to help us, as you always have, during natural disasters.

What does this have to do with us? We don’t need a private prison; we need an end to the War on Drugs that fills our prisons with more prisoners total and per capita than any other nation on earth.

Todos somos Sicilia.


Former Mexican president Vicente Fox urges drug legalization

Sandra Dibble writes in signonsandiego 6 April 2011 that Former Mexican president urges drug legalization

Photo by Omar Martinez — Frontera
Legalization of drugs in Mexico would not only lead to lowered violence and drug consumption but also boost its economy, former Mexican President Vicente Fox said Wednesday during a speech to a convention of newspaper editors from the United States and Latin America.

“Things are going very badly for Mexico with the issues of organized crime and violence,” Fox said in Spanish. “We’re losing large volumes of tourists, if not in the interior, then at the border. We’re losing a great number of investments.”

And if there were more jobs in Mexico, from tourism and investments, there would be fewer Mexicans trying to sneak into the U.S. for jobs.

Will legalization cause more drug use? No:

On Wednesday, Fox cited the example of Portugal, where he said drugs use has fallen by 25 percent a decade after they were legalized there.

That would be better than locking up more people for private profit while not decreasing drug use, and that’s what we’re doing now.