Tuesday, August 29, 2006

AMLO Crosses the Line

The Mexican Election is something that I've been following with some interest. People, it seems, just never learn. Never mind that every socialist economy the world has ever known either imploded or is currently in decline, South/Latin America is once again enchanted by the empty promises and comforting rhetoric of neo-tribalism.

The new wave of Latin socialism started, of course, with Chavez - but the current front is in Mexico. In the closest election in that nation's history, the leftist candidate, Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) lost by a paper-thin sliver of a margin, but has refused to concede. He has been demanding a full recount - to which, incidentally, he has no legal right - on claims of fraud. Mexico's elections board today refused to acknowledge his complaints, and it is believed that Calderon will soon be certified the winner.

In response, Obrador is calling for a September 16th mass demonstration in the Zocalo and has said that he will never recognize Calderon as the winner. President Fox, so far reluctant to intervene (saying - probably wisely - he would not interfere in Mexico City's private affairs without a request - which would naturally have to come from a local government that strongly backs AMLO), now says that as September 16th is a national holiday, the traditional military parade in the Zocalo takes precedence and will go ahead as scheduled. Mexico, in other words, is damn close to a full-blown crisis, and it should now be clear to everyone (except, of course, ZMag and Democracy Now!) that AMLO has no respect for law and order.

Let's hope AMLO has the decency to admit he's wrong and stand aside.

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