Tag Archives: Mexico

Mexico deploys its national guard to its southern border

The Mexican government has begun deploying its national guard along its southern border in order to stem the tide of illegals entering its country aimed at reaching the U.S.

This is a major change from past Mexican policy, which previously had facilitated the movement of those illegals through its country so that they could reach the U.S. as easily as possible.

Mexico’s president is going to pay for this operation by selling his presidential plane for $150 million.

These actions are a direct result of the tariff deal Trump forced on Mexico last week. Though it is still unclear how much effect these actions will have, it is clear that Mexico wants the U.S. to believe it is now serious about stopping illegal immigration. The proof however will be in the pudding. The tariff deal gets reviewed in 90 days, and if the U.S. doesn’t see some real progress by Mexico in reducing illegal immigration through its country to the U.S., Trump has said he will then impose those tariffs.

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Trump announces immigration deal with Mexico, suspending tariffs

President Trump today announced that an immigration deal has been worked out with Mexico, and that he is indefinitely suspending the tariffs he was going to impose on imports from that country.

A “U.S.-Mexico Joint Declaration” released by the State Department late June 7 outlined the details of the deal, saying the U.S. “will immediately expand the implementation” of a program that returns immigrants who cross the southern border to Mexico while their claims are adjudicated. Mexico will “offer jobs, healthcare and education” to those people, “according to its principles,” the agreement stated.

Mexico has also agreed, it said, to take “unprecedented steps to increase enforcement to curb irregular migration,” including the deployment of the Mexican National Guard throughout the country, starting June 10, especially on its southern border with Guatemala. And Mexico is taking “decisive action to dismantle human smuggling and trafficking organizations as well as their illicit financial and transportation networks,” the State Department said.

The agreement calls for more negotiations over the next ninety days.

We shall see. These kind of government deals never seem to accomplish what they promise, so I therefore remain skeptical Mexico will do much to stem the tide of illegals flowing through their country to the U.S.

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Trump considers delaying tariffs as Mexico increases action on illegals

It appears that Trump’s threat to impose escalating tariffs on Mexico if it does not start enforcing its own laws against illegal immigrants is having an effect.

First, Mexico today blocked hundreds of illegals as they attempted to cross from Guatemala into Mexico.

Second, Trump has signaled that if this is true he is now willing to consider delaying the first round of 5% tariffs, set to go into effect on June 10.

Mexico’s action might simply be a Potemkin Village, not be be taken seriously. For anyone, including Trump, to take it seriously will require a lot more enforcement. Regardless, it does appears that the tariff threat might be forcing Mexico to give Trump what he wants.

Update: Mexico today also froze the banking accounts of 26 individuals and organizations its says an investigation has found provided funding for the illegal migrant caravans.

The operation tracked financial movements from October 2018 through current dates in an attempt to determine the sources of funding for the migrant caravans. According to their statement, the UIF identified a group of individuals that made several questionable international financial transactions from the cities of Chiapas and Queretaro during the times that the migrant caravans were moving through those places.

Mexican authorities followed the path of the caravans and the financial operations from Queretaro to the border cities of Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Ciudad Acuna, Piedras Negras, and Reynosa. Based on that information, Mexican authorities were able to trace the source of the funds to the U.S., England, Cameroon, Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, the statement revealed.

Based on the result of the investigation, the UIF moved to freeze the accounts in Mexico of the 26 individuals and entities that are believed to have helped fund the migrant caravans or contributed to human smuggling organizations, the SHCP statement revealed. While authorities did not name the individuals or the entities whose assets they froze, they revealed that they would be filing complaints with Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office for prosecution.

Once again, this is positive news, but until we see some actual prosecutions I suspect that Trump will remain skeptical.

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Republican senators move to stop Trump’s Mexico tariffs

The stupid party: A half dozen Republican senators have announced their opposition to the escalating tariffs Trump has imposed on Mexico designed to force that country to cooperate on gaining control of illegal immigration.

Joining [Chuck] Grassley [R-Iowa] in opposition to the tariffs were pro-trade Senate Republicans Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Martha McSally of Arizona, John Cornyn of Texas, Joni Ernst of Iowa and Rob Portman of Ohio, whose votes Trump will need to pass the USMCA.

This is the same pattern I’ve seen from Republicans for the past half century. Anytime anyone attempts to do anything that might clean up any of the mess we are in, a bunch jump in, for their own aggrandizement, to stymie it.

The article makes the claim that a border state like Arizona will be hurt by these tariffs. Bah. I live here, and see the harm the illegal immigration is actually doing. First, the flood of illegals is damaging the state’s natural environment, as they leave an incredible amount of trash throughout the wildernesses they travel.

Second, the flood has caused the government to make entering the U.S. a miserable and time-consuming experience for people doing it legally, one that is actually discouraging trade. You want to go to Mexico? You walk or drive across the border in seconds. You want to come back? Expect the wait to be one to two to three hours.

Third, the flood is distorting the market. Illegals have to work in the black market, which means they get badly taken advantage of. At the same time, their presence hurts legal workers, who can’t get work.

Fourth, and most important, the flood of illegals is fueling a rising contempt of the law, both by the illegals as well as American citizens. This in the long run is likely the worst consequence of the federal government’s inability to do its job here effectively.

And as usual, we have a lot of dumb Republicans who will team up with the partisan Democrats (who only want power) to block Trump’s effort, an effort that has already shown a positive effect and might actually fix the problem.

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Mexico’s president responds to Trump’s imposition of tariffs

Mexico’s president Andres Manuel López Obrador has issued a response to Trump’s announcement yesterday of the imposition of tariffs, set to escalate monthly, until Mexico makes some effort to help with the illegal immigration problem.

In his letter (pdf) translated by the Wall Street Journal, the socialist leader pushed back at Trump’s announcement, accusing him of transforming the United States from “a country of fraternity for the world’s migrants into a ghetto.” He also attacked Trump’s “America First” slogan, calling it a fallacy as they should be seeking instead the socialist principles of “universal justice and fraternity.”

Obrador then proposed to “deepen the dialogue” instead of using “taxes or coercive measures” to resolve the illegal immigration issue, which has overwhelmed the immigration system at the U.S.-Mexico border. “It is worth remembering that, within a short period of time, Mexicans will not need to migrate into the United States and that migration will become optional, not compulsory. This is because we are fighting corruption, the main problem in Mexico, as never before!” Obrador said as he tried to convince Trump to “seek alternatives to the immigration problem.”

He added that the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Mexico is leading a delegation to Washington to discuss with the Trump administration in order to seek “an agreement for the benefit of the two nations.”

The last paragraph is the important part. Everything else is bluster. Obrador needs to get those tariffs lifted, so he needs to negotiate something with the U.S. to get Trump to remove them. Whether he is really willing to help shut down the illegal traffic remains to be seen.

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Trump imposes escalating tariffs on Mexico

President Trump announced today the imposition of escalating tariffs on Mexico until it acts to stop illegal immigration traveling through its country from Central America.

From the White House statement:

To address the emergency at the Southern Border, I am invoking the authorities granted to me by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. Accordingly, starting on June 10, 2019, the United States will impose a 5 percent Tariff on all goods imported from Mexico. If the illegal migration crisis is alleviated through effective actions taken by Mexico, to be determined in our sole discretion and judgment, the Tariffs will be removed.

If the crisis persists, however, the Tariffs will be raised to 10 percent on July 1, 2019. Similarly, if Mexico still has not taken action to dramatically reduce or eliminate the number of illegal aliens crossing its territory into the United States, Tariffs will be increased to 15 percent on August 1, 2019, to 20 percent on September 1, 2019, and to 25 percent on October 1, 2019. Tariffs will permanently remain at the 25 percent level unless and until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory.

It seems to me a perfectly reasonable position, considering how unwilling Mexico has been to enforce its own immigration laws in connection with illegals heading to the U.S. The illegal immigrant caravans crossing Mexico last year from other Central American countries could have been stopped if the Mexico government had taken action. Instead, it provided aid and comfort to these illegals, often to the distress of its own citizens.

Since then that government’s policies on illegal immigration have been very mixed.

Trump’s action here might serve to clarify the situation.

The bottom line remains the same as always. The law should be obeyed. The federal government is obligated to enforce that law. And, as the White House statement noted, “Workers who come to our country through the legal admissions process, including those working on farms, ranches, and in other businesses, will be allowed easy passage.” Nothing the Trump administration has done has contradicted that statement.

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A visit to the Mexican border

Last night President Trump gave his first prime-time speech to the nation, focused specifically on the hot-button issue of illegal immigration. You can read the full text, with the Democratic response, here. A fair analysis can be read here, which also includes a thorough critique of the press’s mindless partisan reaction.

I usually don’t watch such speeches. I read the transcript afterward, to see if there is any substance there (usually not). It saves time.

What I did do yesterday however was visit the very location that is the subject and focus of these speeches, the border between the United States and Mexico. Diane and I and Earl, a visiting friend from back east, decided to give Earl a taste of international travel by driving down to Nogales to cross the border for lunch.

We do this periodically, not to go sightseeing but buy many of our prescription drugs, which tend to be about 75% cheaper in Mexico and do not require that prescription for purchase. For example, one of our cats has a fungal disease called valley fever which requires giving her a pill twice a day. In the states that drug costs more than $200 for a ninety day supply. In Mexico I can get that same amount for less than $50. (The cost difference illustrates well the mess our Congress has created of our drug industry, since the high cost is directly related to government regulations imposed in the last two decades and topped off by the passage of Obamacare in 2010.)

Anyway, below are some photos from this trip. They give you a sense of what it is like at one of the major populated border crossing points, which by the way and not surprisingly does not much resemble the impression given by our modern mainstream press.
» Read more

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Crowded Mexico City and colonization of space

This week Diane and I are in Mexico with friends doing some sightseeing. As is my habit, I can’t just enjoy the sights I have to ask a lot of questions while trying to get an impression of the place, its culture, its environment, its atmosphere, and its politics. Not surprisingly, the answers to some of those questions pointed me upward beyond the surface of the Earth. To understand why, read on.

Today we toured the inner parts of Mexico City, both on foot and by bus and subway (or the Metro as they call it here). I have spent considerable time in many of the world’s major cities, growing up in New York and visiting at length Moscow, Kiev, Prague, London, Chicago, Los Angeles and others. Mexico City has many of the same features you’d expect for this kind of big city, lots of people, lots of traffic, lots of buildings packed tight together, and lots of wealth and poverty sitting side-by-side.

Mexico City traffic

Mexico City however to me seemed to be most crowded and the most packed of any city I have ever visited or lived in. Its size and population probably rivals that of the entire New York metropolitan area, but somehow the traffic and crowds and architecture seemed more piled on top of each other with far less breathing room.

First was the traffic. Everywhere we went it was wall to wall vehicles. The major highways were never quiet, even at night. Nor could I see much difference between midday and rush hours. The picture on the right shows us heading from in from an outer neighborhood where we were staying to take the subway into the center of the city. Not only was it bumper-to-bumper, but if you look out in the distance the road is bumper-to-bumper as far as the eye can see. My host Alfonso added at one point that in order to avoid this traffic many people routinely leave for work before 5 am and come home after 8 pm. Schools have multiple shifts, including ones at night.

A side note: The tall rectangular structures in the foreground are not buildings. This is a work of art, five several hundred foot tall cinderblock structures supposedly forming a hand pointing up, with the thicker yellow tower in the front representing the thumb.
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The ATF has taken action against the agents involved in running the illegal gun-running operation dubbed “Fast-and-Furious.”

Better than nothing: The ATF has taken action against the agents involved in running the illegal gun-running operation dubbed “Fast-and-Furious.”

Most of these guys will still receive their full pensions. Moreover, this action suggests that they were in charge, something I doubt. Shouldn’t we know who inside the Obama administration actually conceived this illegal smuggling operation?

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The Mexican government has confirmed that three of the guns used to massacre 15 teenagers were obtained by the killers under the Obama administrations’ Fast-and-Furious operation.

The Mexican government has confirmed that three of the guns used to massacre 15 teenagers were obtained by the killers under the Obama administrations’ Fast-and-Furious operation.

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Wiretap applications by Eric Holder’s Justice Department are now providing evidence that top officials, including Holder, knew about the Fast-and-Furious program and its smuggling of guns illegally into Mexico long before the murder of border agent Brian Terry by one of those guns.

It’s not the crime but the coverup: Newly revealed wiretap applications by Eric Holder’s Justice Department show that top officials, including Holder, almost certainly knew about the Fast-and-Furious program and its smuggling of guns illegally into Mexico long before the murder of border agent Brian Terry by one of those guns.

This evidence provides an explanation why Obama, Holder and other Justice officials have been stonewalling Congressional investigations. The documents they are withholding likely prove that they have been lying, from the beginning, about what they knew about Fast-and-Furious. Worse, their willingness to let guns pass over the border into Mexico illegally would make them accessories in the murders of Terry and numerous Mexicans.

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The bloody and corrupt scandal of Obama’s Fast-and-Furious gun-smuggling operation: a summary.

The bloody and corrupt scandal of Obama’s Fast-and-Furious gun-smuggling operation: a summary.

Imagine a government agency designed for the specific purpose of investigating and preventing the unlawful use, manufacture, and possession of firearms. Now imagine this agency engaging in an operation that not only goes against that purpose, but actually seeks to accomplish the opposite, by actively encouraging the sale of firearms to people whose ties to organized crime and gun violence are well known – and that this operation involves sending firearms across an international border into a country that this agency, and the government of which it is a part, purposely failed to warn, inform, or request permission from.

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Congressional investigators now have documents that prove senior officials in Eric Holder’s Department of Justice approved Operation Fast and Furious, whereby the DOJ allowed guns to be purchased illegally and then smuggled back to Mexico.

Congressional investigators now have documents that prove senior officials in Eric Holder’s Department of Justice approved Operation Fast and Furious, whereby Justice allowed guns to be purchased illegally and then smuggled back to Mexico.

Hey, so what that Eric Holder committed perjury before Congress? So what that people, including an American Border Patrol agent, have been murdered using these smuggled guns? So what that the Department of Justice, whose task it is to enforce the law, worked to aid Mexican drug cartels in obtaining illegal guns?

What’s the big deal? Mitt Romney was mean to someone when he was in high school forty years ago!

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It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law!

Mexico has passed its own very strict climate change law.

The new law contains many sweeping provisions to mitigate climate change, including a mandate to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide by 30% below business-as-usual levels by 2020, and by 50% below 2000 levels by 2050. Furthermore, it stipulates that 35% of the country’s energy should come from renewable sources by 2024, and requires mandatory emissions reporting by the country’s largest polluters.

Some predictions:
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“The implication that Mr. Cunningham may have engaged in criminal conduct with respect to Fast and Furious is a major escalation of the Department’s culpability.”

“The implication that Mr. Cunningham may have engaged in criminal conduct with respect to Fast and Furious is a major escalation of the Department’s culpability.”

Mr. Cunningham is a Department of Justice lawyer. The “Department” is the Department of Justice itself. And “Fast and Furious” was the Obama administration’s project to allow about 2000 guns to be smuggled illegally into Mexico, for reasons that remain inexplicable.

Though Cunningham has the right to take the fifth, it should immediately disqualify him from his job, and the Obama administration should fire him. That they don’t tells us a lot about their own culpability in the Fast and Furious gun smuggling scandal. As Issa wrote in his letter to Eric Holder on Tuesday,

Mr. Cunningham’s broad assertion of his Fifth Amendment privilege raises the specter that the Department has allowed him to continue in his position as Chief of the Criminal Division knowing that he might have criminal culpability himself.

You can read Darrell Issa’s (R-California) full letter to Eric Holder here. [pdf]

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Holder laments the murders caused by the use of illegal guns

The kettle calling the pot black: Attorney General Eric Holder today lamented the murders caused by the use of illegal guns in Mexico and the southwest.

Somehow he failed to mention how it was his Department of Justice that helped smuggled those guns into Mexico. In a sane world, Holder would be on trial as an accessory to those murders.

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Archaeologists announced yesterday that they have dug to the very core of Mexico’s tallest pyramid and found what may be the original ceremonial offering placed on the site prior to construction

Archaeologists announced yesterday that they have dug to the very core of Mexico’s tallest pyramid and found what may be the original ceremonial offering placed on the site prior to construction.

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Obama administration considering eliminating the ATF

Whoa! The Obama administration is considering eliminating the ATF in connection with the guns-to-Mexico scandal.

After a town hall meeting about Operation Fast and Furious in Tucson, Ariz. on Monday, ATF Whistleblower Vince Cefalu, who has been key in exposing details about Operation Fast and Furious, confirmed the elimination of ATF has been circulating as a serious idea for sometime now and that a white paper outlining the plan does exist.
[snip]
[However,] ATF field agents weren’t the problem with Operation Fast and Furious, high ranking officials within ATF and the Department of Justice were and still are. DOJ would eliminate ATF only to take the heat off of the Obama Administration. By eliminating the bureau, it makes it seem like DOJ is taking Operation Fast and Furious so seriously, they decided to “clear out the corruption, clean house,” however, it would only be a distraction away from the people at the top of the investigation. In fact, evidence shows the DOJ has been stonewalling the Oversight Committee investigation into the operation to protect Obama political appointees.

If true, this story suggests that there are many very high level officials in the Obama administration that are very vulnerable to prosecution over Operation Fast and Furious, and they are scrambling to find a way to protect themselves anyway possible.

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