Protests In Mexico Push Country To Brink Of Revolution And Nobody's Talking About It

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Nick Bernabe via TheAntiMedia.org,

Long-simmering social tensions in Mexico are threatening to boil over as failing neoliberal reforms to the country’s formerly nationalized gas sector are compounded by open corruption, stagnant standards of living, and rampant inflation.

The U.S. media has remained mostly mute on the situation in Mexico, even as the unfolding civil unrest has closed the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California, several times in the past week. Ongoing “gasolinazo” protests in Mexico over a 20 percent rise is gas prices have led to over 400 arrests, 250 looted stores, and six deaths. Roads are being blockaded, borders closed, and government buildings are being sacked. Protests have remained relatively peaceful overall, except for several isolated violent acts, which activists have blamed on government infiltrators.

 

 

The few mainstream news reports that have covered the situation blame rising gas prices but fail to examine several other factors that are pushing Mexico to the brink of revolution.

‘Narco-state’ corruption

The narco-state, or as Mexican activists say, “el narco-gobiero,” is a term used to describe the open corruption between the Mexican government and drug cartels. The narco-state has been in the headlines lately over the kidnapping and presumed murder of 43 Ayotzinapa students in Iguala, Guerrero, in 2014. This has been a source of continuous anti-government protests ever since.

Though the kidnappings remain officially unsolved, members of the Guerrero Unidos drug cartel have admitted to colluding with local police forces to silence the student activists. Twenty police officers have been arrested in association with the kidnapping. Former Iguala police chief Felipe Flores has been arrested and “accused of offenses including organized crime and kidnapping the students,” the AP reports. The corruption apparently goes all the way to the top, as federal authorities say former Iguala mayor José Luis Abarca personally ordered the kidnappings.

One Mexican activist who wished to remain anonymous told Anti-Media that a lot of people think it’s only the gasoline prices, but the price of gas is just the straw that broke the camel’s back. It all started with Ayotzinapa.

Much like the U.S., the Mexican government is susceptible to corporate influence. It just so happens that the most influential corporate entities in Mexico are drug cartels — and it’s hard for the government to reign in entities that fund and infiltrate it. Similar to the phenomenon of “regulatory capture,” the Mexican government is at least partially funded and co-opted by drug cartels. This festering problem is an underlying factor in the current civil unrest in Mexico.

Neoliberal policies left the working class behind

NAFTA was a contentious issue in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, but it’s just as controversial in Mexico, if not more so. The grand 1994 “free trade” scheme, signed into law by Bill Clinton, saw a dramatic redesign of both the U.S. and Mexican economic landscapes. Corn farmers, long a vital factor in Mexico’s peasant farming economy, were wiped out by low-priced corn subsidized by the U.S. government, which immediately flooded Mexican markets after NAFTA was passed. The Mexican immigration crisis at the U.S.’ southern border soon followed.

Meanwhile, manufacturing plants soon began moving into Mexico from the U.S. to take advantage of extremely cheap labor — leaving many workers in the U.S. out of a job. American agricultural corporations like Driscoll’s have recently come under fire for employing slave-like labor conditions to produce boutique organic fruit for U.S. consumers. Protests for workers rights in Mexico, which recently raised its minimum wage to 80 pesos (~$4) per day, are often met with heavy-handed police crackdowns.

Incoming President Trump has capitalized on two issues caused by NAFTA — the immigration crisis and outsourcing of U.S. jobs — and his reactionary protectionist economic policies will undoubtedly make Mexico’s predicament even worse.

Mexico’s nationalized oil conglomerate, Pemex, has been plagued by falling production for years. Corruption, which is inherent to state-run institutions, has condemned Mexico’s gas industry to inefficiency and stalled innovation. Theft has become a widespread issue, and oil workers were recently caught red-handed siphoning gas directly out of pipelines.

Supposedly to ramp up production and lower prices, the Mexican government pushed through neoliberal privatization schemes in 2013 and 2014, which were backed by U.S. oil interests and incubated by the Hillary Clinton-run State Department. President Enrique Peña Nieto promised the reforms would result in increased production and lower fuel prices, though production has fallen and prices spiked 20 percent on January 1st. Prices are expected to rise even further, as fuel subsidies will be completely phased out by March 2017. Peña Nieto claims the prices must go up to match international prices, though consumers in the U.S. currently pay less for gas than Mexicans.

Peña Nieto’s neoliberal reforms have fallen flat as economic growth has been anemic for years and wealth inequality has grown out of control.

Rampant inflation in Mexico

Perhaps the biggest driver of the current civil upheaval in Mexico is out of control inflation coupled with the value of the peso reaching record lows. Mexican workers are already stretched thin financially as minimum wage hovers at four U.S. dollars per day. Food prices, which were on the rise before the gas price increases, are set to climb 20 percent or more as they correlate closely with prices at the pump.

According to Zero Hedge, in Mexico, it currently takes “the equivalent of 12 days of a minimum wage to fill a tank of gas — compared to the U.S.’ seven hours.” People who don’t drive will also feel the pain, as public transportation costs are likely to rise with fuel prices. Rising gas prices also put downward pressure on the rest of the Mexican economy as workers spend more money on gas and less on consumer goods.

The Mexican government’s deficit spending and Trump’s tough talk on trade have been factors in devaluing the peso, making everything in Mexico more expensive for the working class and driving the general discontent that makes the country a hotbed of unrest.

***

Overall, no one factor can be blamed for causing extreme levels of unrest in Mexico. Before the Ayotzinapa student kidnappings, Mexico was already seeing widespread protests, marches, and strikes. The last several presidential elections have been contested, and the current administration of Enrique Peña Nieto has only a 22 percent approval rating. The general feeling of helplessness in the face of narco-state corruption and economic insecurity is not going away with the next election or protest, and wealth inequality in the country is beyond remedy. Mexico is ripe for revolution. Whether it’s triggered now by the gas gouging and subsequent inflation or in the near future, it’s coming — and we should be talking about it.

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LawsofPhysics's picture

Are their SNAP cards not working?  Yes, the depression remains well hidden in other parts of the world.

Same as it ever was.

Osmium's picture

Thank God that here in the US rising food prices are not inflationary.

A. Boaty's picture

Because we don't need to eat.

Mercury's picture
Protests In Mexico Push Country To Brink Of Revolution And Nobody's Talking About It

 

You'll be glad there's a wall when that SHTF....

Thought Processor's picture

 

 

We may need that wall sooner, rather than later.

hedgeless_horseman's picture

To Brink Of Revolution And Nobody's Talking About It

We were talking about it here four days ago...

 

The State is literally running for their lives...

https://youtu.be/N3tv3_Qt5B8

 

 

This week, Federal Police in the State of Mexico were over run by people protesting the rise in gasoline prices.

 

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bVERRdHXV0

Now, Federal Police are shooting protestors.

 

 

One kilo tortillas gone from 11 pesos to 20 pesos in just a couple of weeks.

 

 

Mexican government says if you dont have a car you dont have anything to worry about.

techpriest's picture

Anyone else notice this part?

NAFTA was a contentious issue in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, but it’s just as controversial in Mexico, if not more so. The grand 1994 “free trade” scheme, signed into law by Bill Clinton, saw a dramatic redesign of both the U.S. and Mexican economic landscapes. Corn farmers, long a vital factor in Mexico’s peasant farming economy, were wiped out by low-priced corn subsidized by the U.S. government, which immediately flooded Mexican markets after NAFTA was passed. The Mexican immigration crisis at the U.S.’ southern border soon followed.

Backing out of NAFTA might solve two problems at once.

toady's picture

Monsoto won't have it.... Mexicans eating non-GMO corn?  NEVER! 

derekiz's picture

I can imagine some pretty bad consequences for expatriate Americans living in Mexico. If Trump puts up the wall (which I want) and if he taxes remittances from illegals and legals which prop up Mexicos economy, you're going to see a shit storm. Those Americans who receive dollars from Investments and SS payments are going to be targets. Just by association they'll be blamed for US policy. Expect potential land leases terminated, physical attacks, rob the rich Norte Americanos during riots etc. Think I'll avoid tripping down there til the dust settles.

peddling-fiction's picture

Ajijic and San Miguel de Allende are prime candidates.

Cman5000's picture

This will eceletate the process. 

Buck Johnson's picture

I know, they will be rushing the borders by the hundreds of thousands in order to have a better life over here in the US. 

Thought Processor's picture

 

"Thank God that here in the US rising food prices are not inflationary."


Pretty funny.  Sadly it's true.  No inflation here to see as long as you don't eat or use gas.  Go figure (or don't, it serves the Gov. interest better if you don't).

Frito's picture

Or get sick or injured

Dungeness's picture

Not long ago I saw a dozen eggs for only 88 cents. Food deflation!

Franktastic's picture

That also goes for energy cost..

MFL5591's picture

They got in bed with Obama , now eat shit!

manofthenorth's picture

All the gun laws on Earth will not stop the blood that is going to flow. Watching that guy plow the line of jack boots with a vehicle tells the tale.

azusgm's picture

In a truck with signs on the sides, no less.

=========

I was in Oaxaca the last two weeks of December. People could not fill up the last several days of the year because of the impending price hike. Gas stations had lines. People in Oaxaca were already paying $3 US/gal before the hike. On January 1st, the price went to approx $4 US/gal. That is a tax on the people and businesses in Mexico. In Texas today, I'm seeing gasoline at $2.18/gal.

As far as "food" goes, a box of Cheerios cost 29 pesos in December. An equivalent box yesterday cost 43 pesos.

The VAT is around 15%.

Bad government in a country that should be rich.

Offthebeach's picture

Pemex government owned/union run. Single payer gas.

No competition.

Imagine what gas would cost in the states if it was ObamaGas?

BeansMcGreens's picture

Next week you'll see that truck on the news with a machine gun mounted in the back and twenty-five isis guys in black pajamas and white tennis shoes.. Well, maybe only five isis guys in black pajamas and white tennis shoes, it not being that big.

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Fast and the Furious ties in with: " the Mexican government push[ing] through neoliberal privatization schemes in 2013 and 2014, which were backed by U.S. oil interests and incubated by the Hillary Clinton-run State Department."

The drug cartels are in bed with the CIA.

The drug cartels own stakes in the Mexican oil industry.

Carlos Slim has ties to drug cartels AND US Intelligence agencies.  He also owns Mexico's telecoms (you can see how that would be important when you are in business with intel agencies), and Mexicans are charged some of the highest rates in the world.

Basically the Mexicans are slaves to these intelligence agency-backed drug cartels.  And it goes to the very top.

logicalman's picture

The only way to kill the cartels is to go full Portugal regarding drug policy.

Take out the huge profits and they will shrivel and die.

carbonmutant's picture

Full Portugal or Full Philippines?

Mr. Universe's picture

Portugal, all legal. If people want to use drugs they will, in fact the war on drugs has nothing to do with health. It has everything to do with money and control.

Tall Tom's picture

 

 

 

 

See what happens with legalization of Marijuana?

 

Some of the State Governments of the United States have demanded some of the revenue from that trade in the form of taxes.

 

The Drug Cartels are being squeezed....out.

 

Thus they resort to strong arm violence...which...will inevitablely spill across our borders...wall...or no wall.

 

The tunnels underneath that border are wide enough for trains. They can ship drugs in quantity...or an army of thugs...with weapons...thank you Eric Holder.

 

Walls do not stop tunnels. See any World War II Concentration Camp Break movie, even if fictional, to see how the gates of those camps were insecure.

 

Yeah. Right. Walls stop armies.

 

Perhaps the US Government will declare the Border Cities as War Zones...send in the troops...initiate martial law...install a Military Government...remove all guns...all "temporary" of course...in order to "protect" the heartland of America.

 

And when that zone "needs to be expanded" because of the increasing violence most will be fine with that too.

 

And what do you think that Jade Helm was about?

Tall Tom's picture

 

 

 

 

You can junk this all that you want.

 

There are consequences for changing any paradigm.

 

i made no case for or against the legalization of Marijuana.

 

But they intend to remove your rights and take your guns. That is WHY Eric Holder armed the Mexican Drug Cartels in the first place.

 

So please...junk this statement. Deny the probability. That will make you feel safe.

 

I will start by junking this one..

MEFOBILLS's picture

Walls do not stop tunnels. See any World War II Concentration Camp Break movie, even if fictional, to see how the gates of those camps were insecure.

 

Wall technology has improved since WW2.  Our Israeli friends have a "see through"  double wall.

The two walls have a no-man zone in between, that can be patrolled.  Sensors can also detect any underground activity.  Sound travels easily through the earth as it is a compression wave.

Israelis have found it important that the wall's open visibility will expose activity, that way armed patrols can respond quickly.

Think of the wall as something organic, with sensor fusion and humans as part of the system.

Below link has some pictures

 

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/israels-border-wall-the-model-for-trum...

Resistance Is Hope's picture

There is another way. American citizens turn to God their creator and stop doing illegal drugs, which are not necessary and do more harm than good. No demand would bankrupt the cartels too. Self control, discipline,  Christianity, and Morality is very valuable, priceless really, when everyone does it...the government and legislation is not the solution or problem: that is totalitarian thinking, the thought process of slaves who have no power and are utterly dependent. The power truly rests diffused throughout the citizenry and how they direct their freedom. It only seems like the people are powerless because so many are failing in their political duty to be self controlled down paths that optimize time, money, health, mind, and soul down empowering avenues. sportsball and porn and alcohol and luxury gives your power away.

Do your part and motivate others to do theirs.

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

And I didn't even tie in the (Wall St) banks or the child trafficking pedos...

Chupacabra-322's picture

It's why I've coined the term:

The Global Criminal Cabal Oligarch Bankster Intelligence Crime Syndicate.

It's a long pipe. However, it describes the Pure Evil Criminal Psychopaths to a T.

Raffie's picture

Poor people often over react to big price hikes.

I know, it is silly, but something I tend to notice.

Where is Vicente Fox Quesada (he is a funny FORMER PRESIDENT) to calm the people? He is at the resort trying to think how to heckle Trump while his country burns to the ground.

Let's buy Vicente Fox Quesada a shovel so he can start diging the footing for THE WALL. The sooner the wall gets done the sooner the Peso and otrrher issues might get fixed.

All of us should tweet him WHEN YOU GOING TO START BUILDING THE WALL?

techpriest's picture

It's funny, there's a chart of food prices relative to household income and the probability of revolution/social collapse. When food hits 85% of income (entirely possible in poor nations, when corn prices spike to $8+ per bushel), the probability of TSHTF hits 100%.

Mr. Universe's picture

The middle class Mexicans do go out to eat. One of their favorites that I have observed is PIZZA! Families will go out and sit down to eat it with knives and forks. No NY fold for them. Actually the Pizza sucks too, except for the few wood fired pizzas at the higher end resorts. Not many Mexican families there, yet Cozumel appears to be a vacation destination for them as well. The cheapest and best Mexican food can be found off the main tourist drags where the pod people shop/eat when released from their cruise ships.

Raffie's picture

I went to Panama for 3mo last year and theyy got all the major American food chains there. LOL

Panama is a fun country and worth a look at.

Resistance Is Hope's picture

Stop spending money on vacations. Invest it in organizations that strategically fight leftism. Self sacrifice time and money for the resistance is the only way to fight the leftists and crush them mercilessly. We must organize!

Oathkeepers is good, project veritas is good, look around at pro sanity cultural movements (anti-feminist, anti-glbt, anti illegals) and fund them. There's militias that deport illegals and there's militias. fund patriotic organizations that teach youth truth, not leftist filth. support homeschoolers. Support evangelism. Get homeless veterans on their feet so they can help us. Out Soros that filth Soros. He has more money but we have more people. Combined we of the resistance have a hundred times his wealth, but we must organize and make a concerted effort to self sacrifice. Boycott the filth. Fund the alt right or fund your own organization.

 

The fire of God is in your soul and fate and destiny demand that with it you ignite the false idols of this generation and burn them to ash.

Mr. Universe's picture

Been there, Done that, and still doing some of it. However I manage our resources in such a way as I can go on safari to Africa, dive in Cozumel, or visit Porto without neglecting any of the things you've mentioned. Organizations joining to then be a target of the gov is not really in my plan for retirement. The next age of this world is rapidly approaching and there is nothing we can to to stop it. Alleviate suffering? Perhaps. We are at the time of either you wake up or are part of the problem. The church is a vast wasteland of perversion as it adapts to the no morality of today's world. Just like Debt must someday be repaid, the wages of sin is death.

ljag's picture

Did I meet you at the Waldorf pool bar?

Franktastic's picture

Revolutions have stated this way....the GOV/CORP will price themselves right out of existence...in a violent way.

fbazzrea's picture

i wonder if the Mexican citizens were given the chance, would they become the 51st-55th states?

maybe DT should work on that... i could dig it. 

kommissar's picture

are you out of your effing mind??!  we would then own all the problems of that fetid mess of a country, and they could ALL move up here - and probably would.

derekiz's picture

Well I propose we start with Baja California. It's a state of Mexico and lightly inhabited and isolated from the mainland and with lots of resources. We cordon it off and ask the folks there to vote on joining the US as a 51st state. Then the US encourages Israeli Jewish immigration to Baja which would give them a non-Arab homeland which they could transform with their technology. Many problems solved. "sarc"

juangrande's picture

Baja California is heavily populated. TJ, Mexicali, Ensenada. BCS is less populated. I've been going there regularly for 3 decades. If it were part of the US, it would turn into the San Diego thru Santa Barbara overpopulated, traffic nightmare, center for all that is idiotic. No thanks!

FIAT CON's picture

Wait a minute, wouldn't that be exactly what the people of Crimea did with Russia.... Wouldn't that mean that the US would have to threaten to fight a war against itself, Because we know that this kind of annexing is grouds for war!... Sorry, forgot the US .gov is above it's own laws, it's do as we say not as we do!

deer_flasher's picture

The drug problem was actually caused by the US, they use the drugs and provide the guns after all