Is Mexico becoming a failed state?

posted at 7:01 pm on November 15, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

An interesting topic of discussion from Mexican journalist Jose Carreño Figueras for you to bat around this evening. Most of the news we see regarding Mexico takes place on our side of the border, with a seemingly endless tide of people illegally crossing into the United States. But there have been other tales on the wire, mostly awful. Nearly four dozen students were kidnapped, allegedly by the police on order of the local government, and turned over to drug lords who murdered them. Frustrated residents revolted and set fire to some government buildings. Other stories of gang violence and government corruption abound. Figueras is wondering if our southern neighbor isn’t on the verge of collapse.

To use a cliche, it was the straw that broke the camel’s back, a strong indication that Mexico’s people are no longer willing to tolerate the current state of affairs. Some have suggested that the government will fall, and others have said Mexico is a failed state.

The Mexican government does not appear ready to fall, not even close. But it seems to be in a defensive situation, maybe waiting for the tempest to wane so that it can regain the political initiative.

It is, in many ways, a crisis of confidence. It is as if all the problems that were not attended to through history were appearing together: the impunity allowed to wrongdoers, the politicization of justice, the corruption, the perceived interaction of different levels of authorities with organized crime, the inefficiency of the police… and on and on. In other words, the wrongdoers appear to get away with murder. Right or wrong, there is the feeling that the whole system is compromised.

These troubles have washed over to US business interests who invest in the region as well. Citigroup and Groupo Mexico were only two of the major interests who saw significant losses through corruption and internal collapse. The author notes that skepticism exists on both sides of the border as to both the ability and the willingness of the government in Mexico at all levels to keep things under control or prosecute those criminals who they do manage to catch. Being angry about the crime taking place is one thing, but when the integrity of the government institutions which supposedly should keep it at bay is called into question, there is a crisis.

Were Mexico to truly fail it would be a problem for the United States to be sure, but I’m not convinced that it’s going to “fail” much more than it already has. (At least not in the same way that we think of central African nations or places like Syria completely collapsing into lawless anarchy and war.) The main problem has been the cartels, but the government serves a purpose for them as much as it’s supposed to for the citizens. They need a functional government infrastructure (or a convincing semblance of one) and a fairly docile population to keep business running as usual. It’s not too difficult to imagine Mexico staying pretty much as it is. The question is, can it be fixed? And perhaps more to the point, what responsibility do we have to assist in fixing it?

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Never have understood why we haven’t put military on the border since we know the drugs are being smuggled in by foot. So much for the war on drugs. Too bad Bush didn’t do that nation building thing closer to home, but, then, if he had, I’m sure the UN would have objected. If dear leader can get a few million more imported, we could end up with a President Gutierrez.

Kissmygrits on November 16, 2014 at 9:09 AM

The single most helpful thing we could do for Mexico at this point is seal the boarder. If no drugs get across, the cartels die, and if the illegals can’t get across, they will have to work to make Mexico better.

Count to 10 on November 16, 2014 at 9:14 AM

“We’re movin’ on up…”

Akzed on November 16, 2014 at 9:16 AM

Count to 10 on November 16, 2014 at 9:14 AM

If no drugs get across, no palms get greased. So what are the odds that no drugs get across?

Akzed on November 16, 2014 at 9:18 AM

The peasants are revolting !

Jeff2161 on November 16, 2014 at 9:22 AM

When was Mexico ever a successful state? Millions flee the squalor of Mexico for the relative peace and prosperity of South Central Los Angeles.

ExpressoBold on November 15, 2014 at 7:21 PM

Pretty much this.

LoganSix on November 16, 2014 at 9:32 AM

One of the most corrupt countries in the world (the fight for #1 is never ending) becomes a staging area for drug cartels.
What could go wrong?

mad scientist on November 16, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Mexico has been a failed state from before the time of Santa Anna.
Mexico has nearly the same amount of natural resources as the USA. Mexico has a good climate and lots of excellent agricultural land. There is no reason that Mexico is as poor as it is other than almost 300 years oppressive, unstable and corrupt government controlled solely by and for the benefit of the elites. The same type of government Obama and his leftist and progressives lackeys now wish to impose on us.

Wallythedog on November 16, 2014 at 11:54 AM

It would have had to have been a success first in order to now be a failure.

The only thing saving Mexico from total third-world status is sharing a porous land border with the richest white nation in the existence of all mankind. South of the border went south generations ago and there hasn’t been much progress since. If we locked down the flow of peasants in and the flow of money out they’d plummet like a lead brick to make the 1930 stock crash look like a fight at a little girl’s tea party.

LawfulGood on November 16, 2014 at 12:23 PM

Is Mexico becoming a failed state?

Well to me that is a weird question when we are trying to build a fence to keep illegals out instead of a wall to keep them in judging by direction of the flow of illegals across the border.

RayNAiken on November 16, 2014 at 1:22 PM

The framers of our constitution never anticipated a takeover by immigration… We need to stop this crap before it destroys us.

triumphus04 on November 16, 2014 at 6:37 AM

What would they have included, reworded, or otherwise done differently in the Constitution, if they had anticipated it?
What the Founding Father could never … no way, no how … do anything about … is FORCE their posterity to recognize and reverence God.
I sincerely believe that after the great WWII, the Christian believers in this country concluded (wrongly) that they had just gone through the “seven-year tribulation” … and now it’s all over, and they can relax . . . . .

“Ahhhhh … sure feels good to rest … Jesus will be here any second now, to begin His Millenial reign.

All we have to do, is wait.”

And that’s why the post-WWII un-Godly, counter-culture revolution was able to get rolling.
[DISCLAIMER: … the Civil Rights Movement, as defined by the black clergy-men who led it, was NOT part of, or in any other way associated with the “UN-Godly, counter-culture revolution.”]

listens2glenn on November 16, 2014 at 1:31 PM

RayNAiken on November 16, 2014 at 1:22 PM

? ? ? ! ! !
Ray’, I’m pretty sure any fence works equally well in BOTH directions, unless it has gates built into it, that only operate one-way.

listens2glenn on November 16, 2014 at 1:36 PM

We have no responsibility in fixing it. Our acceptance of Mexican illegal immigrants has served as a pressure vent for decades that has allowed Mexico to continue limping along. We have more than done our part.

Zoomie on November 16, 2014 at 2:22 PM


easyt65 on November 16, 2014 at 5:48 PM

How to defeat the cartels in one move? Legalize drugs. Yes, even heroin. Especially heroin.

If someone’s idea of ‘fun’ is putting poison into their lungs or up their noses or into their veins, then go for it, dumbass. Fewer reckless losers would be a good thing.

Don’t just legalize it. Someone wants to shoot up heroin? Great. Give it to them for free. All they want. Here, have some more!

Sick societies are the ones who care about the wrong people. Drug users are the last people we should be compassionate about. Start with the people who are innocent victims of the cartels instead.

fadetogray on November 16, 2014 at 7:02 PM

Sick societies are the ones who care about the wrong people. Drug users are the last people we should be compassionate about. Start with the people who are innocent victims of the cartels instead.

fadetogray on November 16, 2014 at 7:02 PM

Legalize every drug under the sun and you will have so many innocent victims you can’t throw a rock without hitting two of them! You want to help them? Treat the cartels like a jihadi with a canister of chlorine…because they’re both using chemical warfare against your nation with the express disinterest in how many of your people DIE.

Do you have any Goddamn idea how badly people had to drag the government into creating a watchdog agency in the earlier days of quack medicine, where cocaine-infused baby medications were sold openly in newspapers? Of how many desperate people died because they didn’t have the time, resources or energy to triple-check every medication and trusted the “doctor”…and there was nobody with any authority watching same?

Only someone ignorant of history and spoiled by protection from birth that he took for granted would seriously suggest such a thing.

LawfulGood on November 16, 2014 at 11:05 PM

LawfulGood on November 16, 2014 at 11:05 PM

Your response is par for the course. You ignore the argument and shoot down a series of straw men.

Where did I say anything about removing FDA quality control on medicines? What did that have to do with anything I said?

Treat the cartels like jihadis? Sure, I’m up for that. Heck, I’ll support executing users, since they are the ones supplying the money to the cartels.

But you won’t do that. You’d rather keep the policies that empower the cartels. That’s what makes you feel good.

fadetogray on November 17, 2014 at 12:04 AM