Friday, February 16, 2007

Puebla, Mexico: City mayor perfectly describes Washington politics in his annual speech

Puebla's Mayor Enrique "The Artful" Doger gave his annual report to his cronies on the city council, yesterday. During his speech, he criticized (and rightfully so) the political atmosphere of
. . . constant problems, artificial conflicts and being held the economic hostage of the state.

Today we live in a situation where political and social life are being made more difficult and are deteriorating. We're being taught a lesson in the use of force and power, of blackmail, of using the lie as method, of causing problems and scandals when the people are demanding results through effort and coordination.
Wow. He just described the Congress to a tee. Oh, wait, he was talking about Puebla City versus Puebla state. I thought he was describing the Democrat party in the House and Senate. You know, "the loyal opposition".

As if to punctuate the mayor's remarks, a group of 25 protesters began shouting epithets at him while unfurling banners decrying a lack of public works in four different municipalities bordering the city. He stepped back from the podium and diplomatically asked them to hold it down until he could finish his speech and he would "attend to them".

Instead, the rabble cranked up the volume to the degree that security officers had to move to them. Then a press photographer took a picture of the protesters and got slapped by one of them. Then all heck broke loose with protesters, photographers and security officers pushing, shoving, slapping and punching each other. Doger, ever the artful one, continued with his speech.

What probably happened here was this. These protesters were a little gift from the state's governor. Doger and the governor of Puebla state have been at odds since Doger took office. While that may seem strange, what with both of them being PRI stalwarts, there is a big difference between the two. Mario Marín, the governor, is a slimy sleezeball (allegedly) and accused murderer (allegedly) from the old school of PRI politics. He's a long time PRI apparatchick from the streets who used murder (allegedly), extorsion (allegedly), blackmail (allegedly) and bribes (indubitably) to ascend to his current lofty position. He's also an ex-mayor of Puebla City. He slimed his way into the governor's chair and is now busy stealing (allegedly) everything not securely bolted down.

Doger, however, is the former rector of the big Puebla University, -- UAP (pronounced, I kid you not, "wop".) He's fairly young, smart, and a corrupt Mexican politician of the more modern variety. He'd fit right in in Washington, Boston, Philly, Chicago, LA, San Francisco etc. etc.. Hence, his style clashes with Marín's lack thereof. Marín is a street thug whereas Doger is a wielder of the scalpel.

Case in point: Two years ago or so an investigative reporter in Cancún named Lydia Cacho wrote a book in which she described a ring of pedophiles operating in the resort. She said that the ring's membership was made up of some very wealthy and well known Mexicans and she named names. One of those guys, Jean Succar Kuri, is now cooling his heels in jail while two underage girls wait to testify about his sexual proclivitities towards little girls, aged 6-14.

Cacho also named as a member of the ring a big shot in Puebla, one Kamel Nacif, also known as "The King of Bluejeans". Nacif got pissed and called his buddy, Governor Marín. Someone, no one knows who or why, taped the conversation. It is suspected that the AFI (kind of like our FBI) was either tapping Nacif's phone or the governor's phones, or all the phones. In any event the phone call was released to the press by person or persons unknown.

The taped conversation has made Marín the laughingstock of the country, which is saying a lot because the country is jamb packed with laughingstocks. In the phone call, Nacif is thanking Marín for a big favor, says he'll send him two bottles of the very finest cognac, and addresses Governor Marín as "Mí gober precioso," -- "My precious little gov," -- if you hadn't figured that out already. Well, "Mí gober precioso" has now appeared about 10 million times in print media, signs, banners, on TV and everywhere else you can imagine, all to the chagrin of the gober precioso.

And what was this big favor that accused pedophile Nacif was calling to give thanks for? He apparently was so incensed with Lydia Cacho's accusations that he called upon his gober precioso to do something about it. Now remember, Cacho is in Cancún, state of Quintana Roo, several hundred miles and several states away from Mario Marín, governor of Puebla. Not a job too challenging for an old time street thug like Marín, however.

He simply called upon a friendly local judge to issue an arrest warrant for the journalist. Then he dispatched two carloads of Puebla police officers across several states to visit the condo of Lydia Cacho, in Cancún in the middle of the night. They arrested her, illegally as hell, and dragged her back to Puebla. Hence the slobbering phone call of thanks from accused pedophile Kamil Nacif to street thug Governor Mario Marín.

That is tantamount to the governor of Missouri sending Missouri State Police officers, in the dark of night, across several states to Ohio, and arresting a citizen of Ohio and dragging said citizen back to Missouri. You can't do that, even in Mexico.

Bad move all around. Not only does the tape get released, but Lydia Cacho had a whole lot of evidence, like video tapes of sex parties with little girls, gynaecologists reports of the physical damage to the children and still photos of the goings on as well as dozens of witnesses tucked away. All this in anticipation that her book would cause just such a reaction from the pedophiles and their corrupt politician/fellow pedophile friends.

Lydia's lawyers managed to get her out of the Puebla jail on bail before she could be murdered. The charges against her were "defamation of character". It took a year for her lawyers to get those charges dropped. Here is how that went down and it is an interesting study in Mexican "justice". After the taped phone conversation turned this into a national cause celebre, the bought-off Puebla judge who issued the illegal arrest warrant suddenly declared "not my jurisdiction". Then she resigned.

Nacif pressed the same charges in Quintana Roo, but a very wise judge there, that is, one who was reading the newspapers, said that the book was published in Mexico City, therefore the alleged crime of defamation did not occur in his state, hence, no jurisdiction either, or also, or whatever. So Nacif, still dumb to the mountain of bad publicity beginning to descend upon his head, pressed charges in Mexico City. Before he could do that, however, the Mexico City government threw out its defamation laws as far as journalists are concerned. So, one year after her original illegal arrest and transport across state lines, a Mexico City judge threw out the charges because defamation is not a crime in Mexico City.

Now, the Puebla judge who issued a clearly illegal arrest warrant has resigned in disgrace, Kamel Nacif is frantically trying to stay out of jail, several dozen other pedophiles are fleeing the country or hiding under their beds and Mario Marín is defending himself in the Supreme Court on charges of official misconduct. If the court finds him guilty, an iffy proposition at best, his political career is over and he might well end up in jail. And Lydia Cacho, released from her illegal incarceration, is busy helping federal prosecutors put several people away for a long time.

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