About Secret History

Commentary on Latin America.
Mostly about Mexico - but not always.
Designed to encourage readers to learn about
the apparently "secret history" of 500 million people
spread across two continents
- but not always.
You can always count on a little snark.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Mexico: Fiery Social Explosion?

Sez Todd Miller at NACLA:

"They say that we're due for another revolt in 2010," Javier says. His eyes slightly spark when he says this. It's the kind of spark that says that something has to give, something has to change, there are too many people like him with not much more to lose.
https://nacla.org/node/6141 to read the whole thing.

1) If everybody has been reading drug violence incorrectly, and what we have seen is a series of local revolts then I might buy it. After all, isn't the big emphasis on 19th C social banditry in Mexico designed to explain a precursor to the 1910 Revolution? But I'm not buying that drug violence in Chihuahua is the same as something like a Tomochic ... but then again, my wife does tell me I am wrong about most things. And not all of the violence Miller refers to in the last 20 years is even remotely connected to narcotics.

2) When I hear these reports by U.S. scholars about a possible Revolution, I often wonder if they aren't getting a kick out of the idea. They've spent a lot of time Romancing the Revolution and maybe (just maybe) there's a little tickle in the back of their mind that looks forward to the carnage of a new revolution.

3) Who would lead this thing? Clearly there are groups in the Huasteca and the Tierra Caliente that have operations already in place, but for the most part, who would lead any revolutionary factions? Angry AMLOistas? I'm just not sure who the clear regional leaders are that would stir up a 2010 scuffle.

4) Who would benefit? Clearly there are social factors at play that Scott or Wolf would identify, and I guess I'll have to start looking at what some of the folks in poli sci (sigh...charts and graphs) are up to. But in the end, I'm hard pressed to see what large result would come of a Revolution. While you could turn back the PAN tide, I'm unclear as to what massive changes can happen in Mexico at this point with limited resources - no matter who is in charge. $$$ is global now, and it isn't like a revolution would place all the wealth and resources of Carlos Slim in the hands of the urban poor. More likely, if things continue as they do, I think we can count on urban riots - and we have a long pattern of urban riots in Mexican cities.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is why -- after going to a lot of trouble to get an on-line non-U.S. subscription (something they didn't offer) -- I don't even bother to look at NACLA any more.

If I want superficial reporting, I stick to Ed Vulliamy in the Guardian ... or to the "mainstream media".

Let's see: based on Miller´s discussion with some dude -- in this case a street musician -- he makes predictions based on economic proposals from a lame duck administration(or, as they say here, "presidencia zombi")... proposals not likely to even get out of legislative committee.

Signs of social unrest... of course. There are in the United States, and France and Britain and Sweden, too. It's called normal life.