Thursday, 25 February 2010

Tomorrow, Driving into the Dawn

    Tomorrow will find me heading South by Southwest to our little adobe hut by the mountains.  I just finished reading yesterday's McAllen Monitor.    The reporting was, typically, full of contradictions, hearsay, and obfuscation and generally contradicted what I know to be true.   There was one admission, finally, in that much  (I would say the large majority)  of the information that swirls about in this environment turns out to be rumour which is not based in fact.
     As an aside, rumour in Mexico is usually fairly reliable.   During these days it has not proven to be so in this geographical area.

     What is going on right now in Tamaulipas State is the puffing and poofing of politicians declaring their  candidacy for various positions ranging from City Mayor (Alcalde) to Federal Congress (Diputado Federal) and Gobernador (you guessed it! Governor).    So, like in the United States people are being rewarded for long service to their parties....some better candidates are emerging....and some real dumboes are "probando la corona" (trying on the crown).    And, as it is said, before  all the campaigns are finished by early July, almost all the men will have had their opportunity to "probar la corona"....but in this case the term is frequently best translated to to "drinking a lot of Corona beer".     Mexican general elections are celebrated under the rule of "ley seca", or the dry law.   And the common joke in the past was that the elections are "dry" because there was nothing left to drink.
     Actually, the people are pretty serious about voting.   They have become more dedicated than in the past because now there are political parties and personalities that make the races interesting enough to bother to vote.   Tamaulipas is one of the last strongholds of the old, official government party...the Partido Revolucionario Institutional.....that held almost all public offices, local, state, and national from 1917 through 1995.    The main national leftwing party the Partido Democratico Revolucionario (PRD) has almost no carbon footprint in Tamaulipas, while the main rightwing party, the Partido de Accion Nacional (PAN), has been able to win a few major mayorships, some few Congressional seats in the national and state congresses, and a couple of national Congress senate seats  during the past few years.

     Times should be interesting for the next nice thing about the elections now is that a person really never knows who might win nowadays.    In the last Presidential elections Lopez Obrador, the leftist led three months before the election 52%(PRD) to 29% (PAN), to 21% (PRI).     When the election was over, the count was 36% (PAN) to 34% (PRD) to 21% (PRI) and 09% (4 small national parties).    Three months after the election....because of almost deranged protests and blockages and moaning.....several polls were taken of the electorate in general, requiring the respondents to choose between the top two and only the top two candidates as if they were voting in a classical run-off.     The results were 63% (PAN) to 31% (PRD) and 06% (neither).    This might have been skewered a bit by the ire of the general populace at the PRD's activists blocking the entire Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City's elegant main boulevard, and essentially setting up shop and residence in the middle of this heavily used thoroughfare.....for a distance of about 40 blocks.

      Okay....just wanted you all to know that I only have brief periods of derangement.   With certainty of my path, now, I shall finish my preparations and perhaps make one more entry before heading down tomorrow morning. 

As usual, Thank you all for your investment of time and interest.
The Old Gringo