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.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

As Lat Am Goes Left, Catholic Church Charges Corruption

Catholic.net quoting Zenit.org reports that when CELAM hosted a meeting at the end of June of civil and religious leaders from Latin America in Guayaquil, Ecuador, the bishops took a stand on corruption in Latin America, arguing that:

"Although corruption has existed in different moments of the continent's history, we could say that we are witnessing a 'geometric' progression in the recent period," a final statement from the seminar asserts. "We see it in the growth of organized drug trafficking networks and frequently in electoral contests, especially in re-election processes that deteriorate the institutions of democracy." see the article here.

Read: "We don't really like the outcome of elections in Latin America these days, constitutional empowerment of the indigenous and poor, and being pressured to stop taking cash from drug cartels. And we really hate Chavez." Calling Cardinal Urosa a troglodyte probably has not improved the relationship with Rome.

It is hard for me to fathom that the bishops honestly feel that Argentina is more corrupt now than in 1950 or that Chile is more corrupt now than in 1980. Really? Because Colombia was a bastion of law and safety in 1928? El Salvador the playground of the Rule of Law in 1981? This is a disappointing performance by CELAM who appear to have succumbed to the complete influence of el Pastor Aleman.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Gang-cation: Yellowstone Getaway for Los Surenos

Local papers in Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho are reporting the arrest and pending deportation of 10 members of the Sureno gang (exact neighborhood affiliation not included) from the resort town of West Yellowstone, MT and the university town of Bozeman, MT. Says ICE:

"criminal gangs, such as the Surenos and others, are becoming increasingly involved in Montana with smuggling and distributing narcotics, laundering illicit drug proceeds, and other illegal activities."

In other words, where there is a market, there are entrepreneurs. Nevertheless, in the back of my mind I like the idea better that they just wanted a short vacation trip to Yellowstone before returning to LA.

ICE set out a press release on the arrests and deportations on their web site. I fear, however, that this will only raise the ire of a simmering anti-migrant movement in Montana and get it to grow in a state that that for all intents and purposes is "purple" and turn it bright red. Having grown up in Montana I can say that what the press should be reporting is a story of Mexicans taking jobs from Montanans ... because narcotics smuggling and other such illegal pursuits are hardly new to my native state. The difference is that now bigots can capitalize on the case.