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Western Press Looks To Protect Mexico’s Corrupt, Curb Enthusiasm For Mexican President (5/30/2019)

Mexico Has Launched It's First Anti-Corruption Probe; The Western World Does Not Care.

Mexico President, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, has launched the first major blow to white-collar crime in Mexico. Mexican prosecutors have charged Enrique Lozoya with money laundering, corruption and organized crime connected to inflated contracts that involved kickbacks to himself and his croneys. The American and European press are not quite too thrilled to see how this unfolds, apparently, as many report on it meekly, without context and only to question whether it is that significant of an event.

Perhaps, the American and European press can not contemplate the possibility that the US presidential administration is much more corrupt than the one in Mexico.

Overtly, at least, fewer of the AMLO administration officials are as corrupt - enmeshed in conflict of issues scenarios - as those billionaire, multi-millionaire members of the Trump administration. Collectively, Betsy Devos, Steve Mnuchin and Wilbur Ross, etc. govern the finance industry, education department and energy industry, the very industries they regulate. Many of these officials stand to benefit from the privatisation and deregulatory scheme they promote, while the same does not hold for the mostly technocratic members of the current AMLO cabinet.


At a loss of words, the Western press has smeared AMLO with notions of populism, a superficial comparison with Trump, where, apparently, the conservative press on both sides of the border can conflate white supremacy and government subsidies simply because they both involve the word ‘nationalism’, but in two very, very different senses.

Regardless, someone still has to explain to me why the New York Times, Bloomberg and Washington Post resort to the term 'populism' in numerically inconsistent ways. In their world, AMLO is a populist, with a 70 to 80 percent approval rating, but just as ‘populist’ as Trump, with his racially limited 38 to 45 percent approval rating. What gives? Do two Mexican votes not equal one US vote in editorial terms?

Indeed, the western press’ usual commented excitement, reserved for regimes, like, the Ukraine, Israel, Brazil or Mexico in 2012, over the most minute democratic developments, is considerably muted for the changes taking place in Mexico today.

Under the anglo-imperial conception of the world , you would think the most exciting regions for participatory democracy, egalitarianism and quality of life indexes lie somewhere in the Middle East or Europe, instead of Mexico, where the first non-right wing or legacy party politician has been elected president after two documented cases of electoral fraud.


Ultimately, given the many obstacles present, any movement towards Democracy in Mexico is more significant than elsewhere. The same holds for any other middle-income, non-interventionist state, one that reflects the majority of the world more closely. Mexico, with a diverse 130 million people (when including the US Southwest population), has obstacles not unlike those of Italy or Russia, but suffers from being the neighbour to the world’s most violent and hypocritical government.

Migration: Comparing Syria and Honduras, Western Europe and Mexico

Like Europe, Mexico too has offered most Central American refugees a form of residency, effectively, granting them asylum away from violence in their home countries. Unlike Europe, an imperial power headed by Donald Trump Jr., a multi-billionaire heir to the Trump family wealth, intimidates, shadows and circumvents the political power of Mexicans everywhere. Yet, in many ‘millennial targeted’ press, the onus of responsibility was on Mexico, a country that has socially and institutionally done more proportionally to their resources than the US, which is where Honduras migrants are actually headed. Matter of fact, Mexico did not impose a violent dictator there either, but the US did. Somehow that was lost in the clamor of anti-Mexican twitter and coverage of Mexico’s somewhat heavy-handed response to property damage at a port of entry between the Mexican and Guatemalan border.

Mexicans and Central Americans

To this day, however, despite the greater spike of Central Americans in southern Mexicans states of Veracruz, Oaxaca and Chiapas along with violence linked to extreme poverty, there are fewer stories from Mexico on rampant abuses towards Central Americans, mass incarceration and drownings of infants or deaths in encampments than in the United States.

Also, there are comparitively few non-terrestrial migrations into Mexico. Europe, however, forces Syrian refugees to migrate through the sea, leading to many drownings and even denial of emergency care.

Social media, so often cited as beacons for new discourse, has become as much of a conformist echo chamber. For instance, there are fewer sassy social media posts on how Turkey, a favoured US client state, truly brutalises Syrian refugees on Germany's behalf than posts about how Mexicans exclude Central Americans from our cultural life (which is not true). The chasm between Mexico’s reality and media commentator narratives is vast indeed.

Mexican Culture and European Perspectives

"Entonces, ¿por qué se ponen al tiro con uno?

Furthermore, Mexico does not have corruption ‘ingrained’ in it’s culture, as was mentioned in the Europa Press report that, ironically, covered Mexico’s very first effort to prosecute the Odebrecht case, the very same case many other western outlets so dutifully covered when it involved the imprisonment and impeachment of two left-wing leaders in Brazil, Lula de Silva and Dilma Rouseffe, respectfully.

Corruption in Mexico is not a custom, but an institutional problem sown partly by foreign intervention that favours the trafficking of influence and impunity. American, Japanese, English, French, Canadian and German businesses have profited greatly from specific weaknesses in Mexico’s prior governments. For example, holes in labor, environmental and economic regulation effectively cemented the corporate influence of Toyota, Volkswagen and Coca Cola, for example, while their usurped institutions remain strong enough to violently protect their interests.

Ultimately, the only real worry of the Western world is whether AMLO will affect profits too harshly, in a way that a repeat of the Calderon or Peña Nieto administration would dare not.

Neoliberal Debate

And, indeed, that aggressive neoliberal perspective emanates today still as warrants for former members of the Enrique Peña Nieto admistration. In the newspapers of New York, Washington D.C. or Europe only asks whether judicial independence will be respected lest AMLO get too close to favored politicians. Narrowly, western Europe only asks how high in the meter for socialist autocrats AMLO ranks, but not why people voted for him in large numbers after several hundreds of thousands of people died over a U.S. led drug war and decades of grotesque corruption.


These entities have conducted business with, and cheerlead for, the biggest Mexican advocates of neoliberal policies and privatization.

Ironically, the domestic press of former colonial states, have cast greater scrutiny on someone whose overtly, for decades, campaigned against corruption. Lopez Obrador’s motivation is seen in purely transactional terms, not as a fulfilment of a social goal held by many. Yet, Brexit, Trump’s election and Yellow Vest protests, which have all reeked of malfeasence, don't get quite questioned the same way. It's the popular will there, not In Mexico, though.

For instance, the Financial Times would do well to theorise whether SKY will continue shaping opinions on Brexit, whether extreme right wing elements will grow in power and ability to cast influence on their ‘ingrained culture’ of colonial exploitation. Instead, however, it questions if AMLO is indeed serious about pursuing more PEMEX and corruption scandals, critically claiming that disgraced PEMEX CEO, Enrique Lozoya, was an easy target despite his being able to secure a judge's dismissal, as most corrupt politicians do in their time of need, only one day after being charged by the Mexican Federal Prosecutors office.

Already, in the western press, corporate analysts and right-wing pundits, invoke Mexican courts, a supposed love-affair with ‘court independence’ to absolve or pump the brakes on the Obrador administration’s push for corruption cases. In other words, when corruption cases are opened in Brazil and these get manipulated into impeaching socialist governements, then these are signs of a strong judicial system, but not when these literally identical event occurs in Mexico, because in Mexico, these cases solidify the will of a pro-state spending and non-servile president.

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