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Everyone Living In Mexico Should Read This


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#1 Coz2wonder

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 12:12 PM

I saw this posted, read through it and felt that it was an important piece of info to share.
source document://www.mexicoonline.com/blogs/1/184/everyone-living-in-mexico-should

Steve Schwab's Blog

EVERYONE LIVING IN MEXICO SHOULD READ THIS
Posted by Steve Schwab March 30, 2011 - Filled in Business - #mexico #Economy #Drugs #Media Bias
EVERYONE LIVING IN MEXICO SHOULD READ THIS
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC REALITY

First: A reality check on Mexico

Mexico is in a unique position to reap many of the benefits of the decline of the US economy. In order to not violate NAFTA and other agreements the U.S.A. cannot use direct protectionism, so it is content to allow the media to play this protectionist role. The U.S. media - over the last year - has portrayed Mexico as being on the brink of economic collapse and civil war. The Mexican people are either beheaded, kidnapped, poor, corrupt, or narco-traffickers. The American news media was particularly aggressive in the weeks leading up to spring break. The main reason for this is money. During that two-week period, over 120,000 young American citizens poured into Mexico and left behind hundreds of millions of dollars.

Let's look at the reality of the massive drug and corruption problem, kidnappings, murders and money. The U.S. Secretary of State Clinton was clear in her honest assessment of the problem. "Our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade. Our inability to prevent the weapons from being illegally smuggled across the border to arm these criminals causes the deaths of police officers, soldiers and civilians," Clinton said. The other large illegal business that is smuggled into the U.S.A. that no one likes to talk about is Human Traffic for prostitution. This "business" is globally now competing with drugs in terms of profits.

It is critical to understand, however that the horrific violence in Mexico is over 95% confined to the three transshipping cities for these two businesses, Juarez, Tijuana and Nogales. The Mexican government is so serious about fighting this, that they have committed over 30,000 soldiers to these borders towns. There was a thoughtful article written by a professor at the University of Juarez. He was reminded of the Prohibition years in the U.S.A. and compared Juarez to Chicago when Al Capone was conducting his reign of terror capped off with The Saint Valentine's Day Massacre. During these years, just like Juarez today, 99% of the citizens went about their daily lives and attended classes, went to the movies, restaurants, and parks.

Is there corruption in Mexico? YES !!! Is there an equal amount of corruption related to this business in the U.S.A.? YES !!!. When you have a pair of illegal businesses that generate over $300,000,000,000 in sales you will find massive corruption. Make no mistake about the Mexican Drug Cartel; these "businessmen" are 100 times more sophisticated than the bumbling bootleggers during Prohibition. They form profitable alliances all over the U.S.A. They do cost benefit analysis of their business much better than the US automobile industry. They have found over the years that the cost of bribing U.S. and Mexican Border Guards and the transportation costs of moving marijuana from Sinaloa to California have cut significantly into profits. That is why over the past 5-7 years they have been growing marijuana in State and Federal Parks and BLM land all across America. From a business standpoint, this is a tremendous cost savings on several levels. Let's look at California as an example as one of the largest consumers. When you have $14.2 billion of Marijuana grown and consumed in one state, there is savings on transportation, less loss of product due to confiscation and an overall reduction cost of bribery with law enforcement and parks service people. Another great savings is the benefit to their employees. The penalties in Mexico for growing range from 5-15 years. The penalties in California, on average are 18 months, and out in 8 months. The same economic principles are now being applied to the methamphetamine factories.

FOX News continues to scare people with its focus on kidnapping. There are kidnappings in Mexico. The concentration of kidnappings has been in Mexico City, among the very rich and the three aforementioned border Cities. With the exception of Mexico City, the number one city for kidnappings among NAFTA countries is Phoenix, Arizona with over 359 in 2008. The Phoenix Police estimate that twice that number of kidnappings goes unreported, because like Mexico 99% of these crimes were directly related to drug and human traffic. Phoenix, unfortunately, is geographically profitable transshipping location. Mexicans, just like 99% of U.S. Citizens during prohibition, go about their daily lives all over the country. They get up, go to school or work and live their lives untouched by the border town violence.

These same protectionist news sources have misled the public as to the real danger from the swine flu in Mexico and temporary devastated the tourism business. As of May 27 2009 there have been 87 deaths in Mexico from the swine flu. During those same five months there have been 36 murdered school children in Chicago. By their logic, if 87 deaths from the swine flu in Mexico warrants canceling flights and cruise ships to Mexico, then close all roads and highways in the USA because of record 43,359 automobile related deaths in the USA in 2008.

What is just getting underway is what many are calling the "Largest southern migration to Mexico of people and real estate assets since the Civil War" A significant percentage of the Baby Boomers have been doing the research and are making the life changing decision to move out of the U.S.A. The number one retirement destination in the world is Mexico. There are already over 2,000,000 US and Canadian property owners in Mexico. The most conservative number of American and Canadian Baby Boomers who are on their way to owning property in Mexico for full or part time living in the next 15 years is over 6,000,000. Do the math on 6,000,000 people buying a $300,000 house or condo and you will understand why the U.S. Government is trying to tax this massive shift of money to Mexico through H.R. 3056. The U.S. government calls this "The Tax Collection Responsibility Act of 2007". Those who will have to pay it are calling this the EXIT TAX.

Mexico: A better economic choice than China

Another large exodus from the U.S.A is high paying skilled jobs. The job shift in automobile sector, both car and parts manufacturing, is already known by most investors. In the last few months as John Deere and Caterpillar have been laying off thousands of workers in the U.S.A., and hiring equal numbers in Mexico. The most recent industry that is making the shift is the aerospace manufacturers. In the city of Zacatecas there is currently a $210 million aerospace facility being built. With the 11 U.S. companies moving there, it is estimated to provide over 200,000 new high paying jobs in the coming years. One of the main factors for the shift in job south to Mexico instead of China is realistic analysis of total production, labor and delivery costs. While the labor costs in China are 40% less on average, the overall transportation costs and inherent risks of a long distance supply chain, and quality control issues, gives Mexico a distinct financial advantage.

Mexico's real economic future

Mexico has avoided completely the subprime problem that has devastated the U.S. banking industry. The Mexican banks are healthy and profitable. Mexico has a growing and very healthy middle and upper middle class. The very recent introduction of residential financing has Mexico in a unique position of having over 90% of current homeowners owning their house outright. U.S. banks are competing for the Mexican, Canadian and American cross border loan business. It is and will continue to be a very safe and very profitable business. These same banks that were loaning in a reckless manner have learned their lesson and are loaning here the old fashioned way. They require a minimum of a 680 credit score, 30% down payment, and verifiable income that can support the loan. In most areas of Mexico where Baby Boomers are moving to, with the exception of Puerto Penasco (which did not have a national and international base of buyers), there is no real estate bubble.. The higher end markets ($2-20 million) in many of these destinations are going through a modest correction. The Baby Boomers market here is between $200,000 and $600,000. With the continuing demand inside the Bay of Banderas, that price point, in the coming years, will disappear. This is the reason the Mexican government is spending billions of dollars on more infrastructure north along the coast all the way up to Mazatlan.

The other major area where America has become overpriced is in the field of health care. This massive shift of revenues is estimated to add 5-7% to Mexico's GDP. The name for this "business" is Medical Tourism. The two biggest competitors for Mexico were Thailand and India. Thailand and India's biggest drawback is geography. Also recent events, Thailand's inability to keep a government in place and the recent terrorist attack in Mumbai, have helped Mexico capture close to half of this growth industry. In Mexico today there are over 56 world class hospitals being built to keep up with this business.

Mexico is currently sitting on a cash surplus and an almost balanced budget. Most Americans have never heard of Carlos Slim until he loaned the New York Times $250 million. After that it became clear to many investors around the world what Mexicans already knew: that Mexico had been able to avoid the worst of the U.S. economic devastation. Mexico's resilience is to be admired. When the U.S. Federal Reserve granted a $30 billion loan to each of Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, and Brazil, Mexico reinvested the money in Treasury bonds in an account in New York City.

According to oil traders, Mexico's Pemex wisely as the price of oil shot to $147 a barrel put in place an investment strategy that hinged on oil trading in the range of $38-$60 a barrel. Since the beginning of 2009 Mexico has been collecting revenues on hedged positions that give them $90-$110 per barrel today. Mexico's recent and under reported oil discovery in the Palaeo Channels of Chicontepec has placed it third in the world for oil reserves, right behind Canada and Saudi Arabia.

The following is a quote from Rosalind Wilson, President of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce on March 19, 2009. "The strength of the Mexican economic system makes the country a favorite destination for Canadian investment".

OPPORTUNITIES: WHY PUERTO VALLARTA & THE RIVIERA NAYARIT

The answer is simple and old fashioned: SUPPLY AND DEMAND.

The area of Puerto Vallarta/Riviera Nayarit inside the Bay of Banderas is an investor's dream. This area has the comprehensive infrastructure in place, world class hospitals and dental care, natural investment protection from the Sierra Madre Mountains, endless future water supply, low to nonexistent crime, international airport, and limited supply inside the Bay, first class private bilingual schools and higher than average appreciation potential. Like many areas in Mexico there is large demand for full and part time retirement living and a lot of construction underway to meet this demand. Pre construction of course is where the best bargains are available.

I would offer a word of caution for investors in Mexico. Do not be seduced by the endless natural beauty that is everywhere, both inland in colonial towns and along thousands of miles of beach. Apply conservative medium and long term investment strategies without emotion. The demand for full and part time living by American and Canadian Baby Boomers is evident throughout the country. The top two choice locations are ocean front, and ocean view. The third overall choice, which is less expensive, is inland in one of the many beautiful colonial towns or small cities.

Mexico, with the world's 13th largest GDP, is no longer a "Third World Country", but rather a fast growing, economically secure state, as the most recent five-year history of its financial markets when compared to the U.S.A.'s financial markets suggests.
ONES AVERAGES MAY 2004 10,200 - MAY 2009 8,200 20% LOSS IN 5 YEARS

MEXICAN BOLSA MAY 2004 10,000 - MAY 2009 23,000 130% GAIN IN 5 YEARS
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#2 Coz2wonder

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 01:38 PM

forget the news reports, it's irreverent...look at the resources of Mexico.

What Mexico is, and what will become on the world market is huge.

Who ever said Mexico is a 3rd world country doesn't have a clue of what is available, and what is in the near future.
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#3 Freezin' Canuck

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 02:20 PM

Good article, Coz2!
I am amused that the US and Canadian media have a lot of ink for Mexican crime but almost ignore major US and British banks being used to funnel billions in Mexican drug money to offshore accounts with no oversight and accountability, benefiting both drug dealers and terrorists; or manipulating global interest rates(LIBOR/Barclay's and 15 other major banks) or wrapping up toxic mortgages that have virtually sunk the world's economy. No, Mexico's criminal element pales relative to some other international criminals (in pin-stripe suits) that seem to be immune to prosecution. But Mexico makes a convenient diversion and an easy target.
I still love Mexico and Cozumel in particular.
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#4 mexcelia

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 08:35 AM

So glad you posted this Coz. I'd written a few blogs about the media sensation (especially on Fox News) a couple of years ago when living in Cancun and my friends back in the states thought I was nuts. An example, one morning, about two years ago, there was a report on Fox about a "terrorist attack" in Cancun. Now, I didn't know too many people, but I knew enough that someone would have called me to let me know. So I started to do some digging. It seems that a local bar, located just outside the city limits, had a problem brewing between the owner and several others. The "others" decided to come back with three Molotov Cocktails and threw them inside....people were hurt, I don't want to take away from that, but the "news" was the day's headline, reported in a similar vein as 9/11 (using the term "terrorism" repeatedly) and it was just another scare tactic used by the U.S. media. As far as the H1N1 virus, when I looked up the stats it turned out that it had killed less than 5% of the population that died from a flu that year, the rest died from other strains that had nothing to do with Mexico. But, that didn't stop the presses from front page photos of people in masks, which can be much scarier that reporting the truth. Finally, when things were front page about Ciudad Juarez I received a lot of email and phone calls from friends in the states. When I pointed out that, when driving, they were actually closer to Juarez than I was, well, not much was said. It seems many Americans are not aware of just how large this country is and I tried to make it relevant by mentioning that, as an example, tourists should stay away from San Francisco when there are problems in New York City, geographically speaking. This is a subject that seems to fire me up so I'm going to stop for now. Great article, hope it reaches many. :mellow:
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#5 Coz2wonder

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 09:49 AM

What my take away after I read this was that Mexico is posed to become a major player in the world markets.

It has a diverse landscape, strong banking policies, and a huge wealth of natural resources.

Mexico will continue to grown with the right stewardship in all the major markets in the world.

Education, and training is a major key to Mexico's success. You make people smarter, they do smarter things that all will reap the benefits from.
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#6 mexcelia

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 02:23 PM

Funny how an emotional response can cause tunnel vision, only saw the parts that fired me up........ :blink:
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#7 Charles

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 12:51 AM

The dinosaurs have risen again to rule Mexico after their 12 year slumber. After 12 years of the presidency held by the PAN, the PRI regained control of the election process and the old power structure has control of the mayor's office, the governorship and appears that despite the numerous classic voting irregularities the PRI made institutional, Calderon will leave office and turn the keys to Los Pinos to the PRI chosen president.

Mexico does not need over sensationalized journalism exaggerating the situation, but too, it doesn't need a national press that is afraid to report the true reality.

The drug war between the government and the cartels and the assorted battles between the cartels deserve to be put in realistic perspective. Secretary of State Clinton "was clear in her honest assessment of the problem. "Our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade. Our inability to prevent the weapons from being illegally smuggled across the border to arm these criminals causes the deaths of police officers, soldiers and civilians," Clinton said"

Steve Schwab is a real estate agent and the largest property manager for northern Mexico for the Sea of Cortez, most notably in Puerto Peņasco, Sonora. I remember when this was a sleep fishing village of a few hundred people in wooden shacks and it has been turned into a Gringolandia Mecca of wall to wall condos of "Rocky Point". I take serious issue of some of Steve's self serving statistics, Steve has some issues of his own:
http://www.rockypoin...thread2063.html

I wonder how he will spin control last month's shooting in downtown Rocky Point that left six persons dead including one policeman: http://azstarnet.com...328728242d.html

Indeed Mexico is blessed with incredible riches, but they have never been efficient in production and the disparity between rich and poor has only widened in the last two decades. Of the population, 44% live below Mexico's defined poverty line,10.5% live in extreme poverty. Roughly 40% of the population lacks access to basic health care. Chiapas, my favorite place is a State with huge riches, exotics woods, coffee production, oil and gas, but produces a great deal of hydroelectric power. Despite these riches, it remains the most impoverished state with almost 77% of the population living below the poverty line.

Wall Street DOW AVERAGES MAY 2004 10,200 - MAY 2009 8,200 20% LOSS IN 5 YEARS

MEXICAN BOLSA MAY 2004 10,000 - MAY 2009 23,000 130% GAIN IN 5 YEARS

Today in 2012 La Bolsa is above 30,000, an increase of 30%, but the peso's exchange rate has declined 30% so the reality is no change.

The DOW has come back to close above 13,000, a gain of 65% in the past three years. The rich get richer and the numbers of those marginalized grows on both sides of the border. Mexico has invested almost zero on infrastructure and exploration to tap new petroleum reserves. All the revenue of Pemex goes to support the government and to finance elections. Mexico can't meet their own refinement needs and must import from the US and despite the huge untapped reserves, if they don't open the sacred petroleum industry to foreign investment, they stand at risk of becoming an importer nation in the next ten years. Pemex is a rusted dinosaur that needs to get on solid ground in the 20th century, the oil industry is a pipe dream to enter the 21st century without outside capital. That is forbidden since Mexico nationalized the oil industry and kicked out the foreign corporations. Start with Carlos Salinas' neoliberalism policies, Salinas sold off the banks, the ports, airports and surrendered Mexico ownership and control of key infrastructure. Banorte is the only remaining Mexican bank.

Mario Villanueva as governor turned over state control to the Gulf Cartel in 1995. The Zetas began as their military and security faction, many members trained at the School of the America's in Georgia, they rose in power to eclipse and exceed their former bosses and seized power themselves. The Zetas have maintained control of the mainland, most importantly Cancun and have only been challenged by the Pelones who have tried to gain a share of the Playa de Carmen drug plaza. Cozumel has been spared the violence that has grown along the Mayan Caribbean coast between Cancun, Playa and Tulum. Let's not pretend it doesn't exist. That firebombing in Cancun killed eight people, all employees including six women. The owner managed to survive whom the Zetas had been trying to extort $40,000 in protection money. Numerous businesses in Cancun and Playa either pay or have closed. Ten men with molotov cocktails burn eight people to death, six died at the scene, two survived long enough to be transported to hospitals and the owner did manage to survive and was recovering.

Cozumel has remained out of the battle zones as things are under control, no conflicts between different cartels. Being an island it has some built in protections as well as a strong military presence. The fact that the last three Mexican presidents have vacationed here speaks of the security and relative safety. We don't need to sugar coat it or blindly look through rose colored glasses. Assuming the PRI takes the presidency, that will return things back to the status quo of 70 years of institutionalized rule. The current governor Roberto Borge is the nephew of Miguel Borge the governor before Mario Villanueva who after being in prison for ten years, still awaits trial in the U.S. for drug trafficking charges. The politics of Quintana Roo and control of Chetumal have changed a lot, steadily downhill since Pedro Joaquin Coldwell, the island's favorite son was governor. Even if there were a couple of decent, fair, honest governors, Pedro Joaquin would stand out as being the best. He didn't do that much for Cozumel as expected, but brought health care and education to many rural communities that were still existing in de facto enslavement. Mexico is in desperate need of political leaders who have vision and work for the long range common good of all Mexicans.

I love Mexico, the land, the people, the cuisine, the rich cultural heritage, but accept or deny, there are a lot of warts. By far the biggest cause of obstacles of Mexico reaching the 21st century, of progressing beyond third world status comes from the insatiable appetite for mood management substances, 40 years of a failed U.S. policy of its own "war on drugs" as well as the flood of guns and arms flowing south. The U.S. bears a lot of direct responsibility for the challenges that face Mexico and it is past time for that admittance and changes in U.S. policy. Mexico didn't create this mess, it was given to them.

Grateful Dead "Touch of Grey" Shooting powders back and forth, white goes north, black goes south.

Viva Mexico!
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#8 mexcelia

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 07:01 AM

Charles, first I want to thank you for the correct information pertaining to the "terrorist attack." It appears that somewhere in between the Fox News report and my listening to the local news with a translator was the truth. Since I believe in the adage that "90% of people who quote stats don't know of what they speak," it appears I fell into that category.

However, I am curious whether or not nationalizing the petroleum resources may have been a good idea, initially. As I am online often due to my work I find myself turning to articles pertaining to war, soldier suicides, and "oil rich" countries etc. and, in the comments, I often see examples of the hatred that Americans now seem to spew towards the peoples of those countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran etc. Was this due to "spin control" of information fed to Americans? Don't know enough to comment, but Mexico's tactics might have been a good example of a potential problem averted. However, if what you say is true and the resources are merely used by questionable people for questionable purposes then it seems that a problem remains. Solutions? Again, don't know enough, but am happy to hear that, so far, much of these issues do not affect Cozumel.

I, too, love this country and find myself having a visceral response to the American people's comments I've read about Mexico, and other countries. However, having been involved in (very) minor political activities back in the states I'd been told, when I first arrived, that politics were Not to be my business in this country. In fact, when involved in a small protest pertaining to the "herding" of dogs and cats prior to tourist season on Isla Mujeres I received an email from the mayor's office demanding my full name, address, and phone number. Since I want to respect the cultural expectations I ceased, and, frankly, I was concerned that I may have pissed off the wrong people.....I've heard the stories too. So, guess all I want to say is that I hope you keep writing about the real information without the emotional reactions that old hippies like me tend to fall into............ B)
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#9 guerita76

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 08:48 AM

Hmmm... to me that article seems a little crazy... definitely not well researched and obviously self-serving. Does the media sensationalize stories? Of course, but it is not with a secret agenda to take money out of Mexico's pockets! The media sensationalizes everything! They are not out to get Mexico! This is not an easy discussion on any level. The issues in Mexico are so complex and nearly impossible to understand. Living on Cozumel makes it even harder, because this really is a very isolated and separate piece of Mexico. Honestly my heart and home will always be in Veracruz, Mexico, but, in opposition to what is stated in that article, it is not safe there right now. The article says "It is critical to understand, however that the horrific violence in Mexico is over 95% confined to the three transshipping cities for these two businesses, Juarez, Tijuana and Nogales.... During these years, just like Juarez today, 99% of the citizens went about their daily lives and attended classes, went to the movies, restaurants, and parks." WHAT??!! 95% contained to 3 cities? Not even close to the truth. As far as life going on as usual... to a point. When I was in Veracruz in October, where there are bodies dumped off of bridges, shoot-outs in front of my mother-in-laws house, people were out and living there lives, yes. But with a dark shadow over everything. Simple things, like taking my dog to the park, were complicated because the park near the house was now controlled by the anti-zetas and could not be used. Driving into Veracruz, on the paid tollroad, the truck in front of me slammed on breaks and flew off the highway. Reacting, I spun out and my car came to a stop to see two naked, dismembered bodies dumped on the road by drug gangs. None of this was reported in the media, and actually, the following day, the governor of Veracruz reported that "everything was great" and encouraged tourism. When I hear the comparisons of crime in US cities, I get frustrated. It is comparing apples and oranges and does not work. Does the media need to create campaigns to scare people away from Mexico? No, overall Mexico does remain very safe. But it also does not help anyone to keep your head in the sand and pretend that everything is ok. I am never going to tell anyone to stay away from Mexico, and much less from Cozumel which is a wonderfully safe island. Mexico is my first true love and I always hope for good news and turn-arounds, but there is a long, long way to go.
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#10 mexcelia

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 10:26 AM

I am so glad to see that a dialogue has started pertaining to these subjects written by people who live here. Guerita, I think you and I could sit down and have a great discussion from our similar, although not quite the same perspectives. You've seen, first hand, the effects of the drug war, which I have not and I think that may well be one of the reasons we differ somewhat. I may still be ignoring the big picture, but what that picture actually has become is increasingly difficult to discover. Maybe the best way I can illustrate what I believe the media is doing is through an example, although one from the states.

I worked at a university and lived, for a while, in a gang ruled area just on the outskirts; this was in Youngstown, Ohio. The university carefully drew it's publicized :mellow: boundaries within a special grid because to report the additional two blocks, where many students lived, their safety standards would have dropped, considerably. Therefore, a small group of us, the profs, bought homes on one of the worst streets (they were practically giving them away) to try and extend the boundaries so that university police would patrol. I went to sleep listening to gunshots, there was a crack house across the street, and, finally, when two men were shot at a convenient store just two houses from me, I moved. Point to this was, the university media "spun" the news for the benefit of its profit margin. I believe this is what is happening between the states and here,

I'm also reminded of the lines being drawn anytime I see the states putting up travel warnings just prior to spring break, which does hurt Mexico's tourism greatly (in the millions I hear, but not going to quote stats cuz I just don't know). So, in this area it seems that there is, at the very least, a tug of war between countries just prior to money making endeavors. Do I think that America is "out to get Mexico." Sometimes I wonder. Again referring back to comments I read on articles pertaining to immigrants, inaccurate news reports, new and controversial laws pertaining to immigrant status etc., yes, I think America is beginning to take a stand, and I don't believe it is a favorable one for relationships between the two countries. My academic friends, supposedly well informed folk, were dead set against me making this move a few years back, which shows me that the stories being told are being sold.

But, again, most of us feel quite lucky to be here on this island where we are, to a point, quite insulated from the greater picture. I hope that remains so, but, if it changes, I have a feeling it would take a while for me to accept the facts simply because this is now my home. In fact, I'm surprising myself with just how devoted I am already.
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