Friday, 18 November 2016

Tamaulipas...por Vista de Pájaro (Tamaulipas by the view from the bird).......

   These are serious times at our little place down in the idyllic setting in front of the Sierra Madre Oriental, deep in the Mexican interior.  The new governor who is thought to be a "pretty-boy" by some...a hood ornament...or poseur, has revealed himself to be one tough cookie.

    He is a graduate of a McAllen, Texas high school and a respected Houston area Baptist university.   He was President of the Reynosa City/County government for a term that met with considerable advances and up-grading. His budget was evaluated with a neither an A+ or A-, but just a plain A rating, after his term.

      His rating at the end of his term by the City/County populace was the same, just a plain A.   Anything over C- in Mexico means that the person who finished the term is one in every ten in the Mexican panoply...or a secular saint of some sort.
      This person has proven to be something that all hope might arise among the people and lead them to the promised land.   He and his posse made of Reynosa, finally, a geographical theatre where common and great events can take place and comfort and progress can be achieved through industry.   A moment in time and place where wealthy people can make more wealth for themselves and others by investment and the taking of risks, and poor people can advantage themselves of choices in life-pursuits and interests as they climb into the many forms of middle-classism.

    In a way, he thrusted Reynosa, Tamaulipas into The New Reality.  He pulled the ancient nobility of the place as a colonial outpost in the mid-1750s into the future....the year 2050, if you will, with what is an essentially (American) conservative Republican agenda.   You have not heard of the details of this man and his cadre of thinkers and classical, Bible-driven, Adam Smith -thinking people.


     It is so different from Iguala, Guerrero in southern Mexico, where the marxists maintain a state of turmoil at all times.  In Tamaulipas, at the opposite end of the Republic of Mexico, problems....lots of problems remain and are self-evident.  Anyone can see it as he/she crosses the Rio Grande.
  Most such first-time, south-bound crossers, however, are surprised at how ''up-to-date'' and not-so-poor Mexico presents itself even there, along the frontier.   Credit card activation, decent food/drinks/slightly to totally acceptable restrooms, etc. are no novelty. There is a certain order in the typical Latin "eclectic" that is still evident (and hopefully will live forever).  But,  a viable "social contract" based on morality, civility, law, and very 99.9% of the area which composes Tamaulipas.

    As Francisco Javier Garcia Cabeza de Vaca assumed and then "settled in" to the throne of Governor of Tamaulipas, he immediately went back to his home-ground in Reynosa and declared that there would be an end to the terror presented by the human and drug traffickers.  The end to the notion that any Cartel or group of left-over pandillas (gangs-self identifying with Cartels) will control the lives of the normal people of Tamaulipas is, in his words, "much closer than the horizon". 
     He restates his campaign promise, " I shan't put myself to the knee, and I shan't put myself up for sale....(implication being to the Cartels or Pandillas)".

     During these first days of his term, one act has been supreme.   He has called the generals and colonels of the National Army and Naval Infantry together to establish a new order.  Essentially it seems to be that he is saying, "If they are killing each other, then fine.  Any infringement upon the citizenry, however, will be met with the most unforgiving wrath."   The previous governor did not lay down these rules of engagement and pitty/pattied with the issues that so severely continued to affect Tamaulipas in spite of other improvements.

     Since his arrival, an "efficiency measure" has been taken which means that the Federal Officers in black uniforms, who are actually members of the Army but called civilian, have been moved into Cd. Victoria and the Tampico / Madero / Altamira complex.  The Army and Naval Infantry have been placed in charge of Tamaulipas highways, by-ways,  and special demographic enforcement.   An improved situation has become increasingly improved, one might say.
      The other day, when going the short distance from the Quinta to the place where I buy cream for the calico cat, and other goodies (peanuts, nuts, milk, Jumex juices), I had to pass through a complete company of heavy infantry, deployed in front of the Hacienda de Santa Engracia, less than a half-mile from your Quinta Tesoro de la Sierra Madre.
      Much of their "deployment" was also associated, obviously, with recruitment procedures, what with the uniforms, the weaponry, the "strut" of the soldiers.  There were, however, numerous of the company that stood in at-ease position, but "pendiente"(aware), and with their bayonets affixed.  Their uniforms, accoutrement, and appearance was militarily correct.  I learned later that they had been involved in Michoacan State's western areas and had had considerable success in degrading the "Knights Templar" group and other pandillas.
     They were somewhat accommodating and slightly friendly to an Old Gringo (El Gringo Viejo).  Some had heard of me, which means that they have dreadfully little about which to speak.   But, neither my coming nor my going was impeded, as is usual.   And that, coupled with the fact that there has been no significant cartel or pandilla violence after the first couple of months of the new Governor's regimen speaks more than volumes.

We shall see as the days go by....
El Gringo Viejo