The Mexicanization of the US

David Terrell PhD

Living in Mexico for more than 40 year gave me an insight about the meaning of accountability, or rather about how the lack of accountability corrodes society.

In Spanish there is no word for “accountability” therefore it is not part of Latin American cultural values. About 20 years ago in Mexico we were talking about the “Colombianization” of Mexico as the drug cartels were infiltrating the powers of government and corruption was becoming rampant and incontrollable. Now we see the consequences and the question is: if Mexico’s socio- economic system is beyond repair. I was able to witness over all those years living in Mexico how the powerful players were warned about the future but kept profiteering from the situation. Today as things are out of hand and personal security is difficult to obtain, even the oligarchy is claiming for a change. We have to understand how this happened, how slowly as the frog boiled in a pan of water by slowly increasing the temperature; the Mexican society got to this point during a long span. For 71 years a single party ruled the scene, the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) was able to convince people every six years that a new day had arrived. A new beginning every six years as a new president was inaugurated. In his inaugural speech Carlos Salinas de Gortari said how the country was in an economic and budgetary mess, so Mexico had to move forward to fix this mess. What he didn’t say was that he was secretary of Budget and Finance and that under his watch the country had gotten into the mess. So what was the new direction? Do the same thing! Forgive all the sins of the past, as he incited all his compatriots to look to the future not to look back and find whom to blame. The times were not to find blame but to see the bright future that the nation had. In the year 2000 Mexicans voted for change! A “new” party, The Party of National Action, was brought into power. Vicente Fox was now the new leader who wanted to look forward and forget the mistakes of the past. There will not be accountability. There would be no investigations about the political murders of the recent past or any other crimes. Mexicans new that Carlos Salinas, backed by the US, got into power through a fraudulent election against the “socialist” Cuauhtémoc Cardenas, and that Ernesto Zedillo got the presidency after Donaldo Colosio was assassinated in Tijuana. Again a new beginning for Mexico was at hand. Six years later it was clear that the “new” party was nothing more that the old oligarchy with a new name. The bankers and stockbrokers that managed the system since the economic crisis of early 80’s continued with enormous immoral profits as the country was going down the drain. One must remember in 1994 when the administration of President Clinton supported president Zedillo to save the Mexican banking system by lending money that the Mexican bankers took without a blink, These people are who continue to be the power behind the “new” party. Now of course Felipe Calderón has the task of bring order and security in the face of a growing dispute between moneys within the Mexican elite. The question of course is: Is it too late?

Similarly, we in the US are moving in the same direction as accountability is being taken off our cultural fabric. That is why we can talk about the Mexicanization of the US. Is highly similar to hear now President Obama talking about the future with optimism and lack of accountability for those who are bringing our loved country to the ground.


Ulysses's picture
Ulysses 9 years 11 weeks ago

I've never understood why American politicians get away with ranting about their opponents' "crimes" and "ethical abuses" in their campaigns and then never holding those same opponents accountable for the "ethical abuses" or prosecuting them for the same "crimes" after they defeat them. "We have to move forward, not dwell on recriminations" has become an axiom, or mantra, of spineless politicians in both parties. Sadly, the American sheeple always fall for it, just like the Mexicans do, and there's never a shortage of ordinary citizen droids among the common people who run around mouthing it themselves. People seem to be hard-wired to wax optimistic in the face of any apocalypse or serious societal problems because that's easier than facing reality and doing something about it. Human nature, when faced with a choice between expediency and doing the right thing, will, sadly and most often, opt for the former. So, most are willing to buy into the "move forward" b.s. and thus abandon accountability because although it's delusional, it's easy. The sheeple never figure out that even when they give "move forward" politicans the space they ask for by not demanding that they go after their predecessors, things still never get any better. It's almost analogous to the planned "feuds" in professional wrestling, wherein the advantage seesaws back and forth between "heroes" and "villains" from week to week, thus maintaining the long-term interest of credulous fans who can't resist coming to the matches perpetually so they can see whether "good" will ultimately triumph over "evil." It never dawns on them that there will be no ultimate resolution because the people running wrestling don't want one; it would be bad for their wallets The repetitive "move forward" dynamic does give one pause for speculation. Have both sides been in cahoots from the beginning and agreed, behind-the-scenes, on the oligarchy's pre-planned agenda for the country, with the "criminals" and "ethical abusers" being the conservative "bad cops" and their "move forward" no-accountability successors being the liberal "good cops?" "Good cops," after all, are ultimately after the same results as "bad cops," and most of the time, "move forward" proponents not only fail to demand accountability; they also fail to truly "move forward." Meanwhile, political criminals of all stripes who objectively violate laws and standards continue to walk, proving conclusively that the well-connected in America enjoy legal and moral impunities unavailable to ordinary citizens. Why should we have any faith in a system that allows this to happen?

dterrell's picture
dterrell 9 years 10 weeks ago

and...when are we going to make these politicians accountable? Some how it seems that the system is set in a way that we can just "move on" and as long as there are new issues that keep our attention away from keeping these so called leaders in line!

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