TALK & OPINIONS BY SILVIO CANTO JR.

We discuss politics, sports and a few extras!

A leftist president in Mexico?

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His full name is Andres Manuel Lopez-Obrador. They call him AMLO, LO or his supporters call him Andres. He’s been around for 30 years preaching a leftist populist message that does not really sit well with Mexico’s upper and middle class. In other words, he is not as popular in Mexico as the international press leads you to believe.

According to polls, Sr. Lopez-Obrador, the former Mayor of Mexico City, is in a strong position to win the Mexican presidency.   

We say according to polls because the campaigning has just begun.    

We don’t know how reliable polling is in Mexico.   

We do know that there will be more than two candidates running, so a plurality is all you need to win the election. In fact, from Zedillo with 48% in 1994 to Fox 43% in 2000 to Calderon (36%) in 2006 to Peña-Nieto (38%) in 2012, the last four presidents won by a plurality.

My point is that Lopez-Obrador could win the presidency by getting less than 40% of the vote in a crowded field.   

Lopez-Obrador would take Mexico to the left, although that may sound easier said than done specially without a clear mandate. So far, he has been singing a very populist tune, as we see in this update from the LA Times:     

On Tuesday, Lopez Obrador told his supporters that while maintaining a relationship of friendship and cooperation with the U.S. is important, “we will not accept the mistreatment of migrants, or racist, hegemonic or arrogant attitudes.”

He also pledged to help Mexican farmers and ranchers compete with cheap imports from the U.S., promising subsidies, low-cost fertilizers and set prices for some crops. “In short, we are going to produce the food we consume in Mexico,” he said.

His nationalist platform has drawn comparisons to President Trump. So has his frequent name-calling of rivals. This week, he made headlines when he tweeted a photo of himself stuffing meat into a taco and a dig at Anaya and Meade. “Besides not visiting villages and hearing from the people, the spoiled rich kids of the power mafia miss out on succulent barbacoa,” he wrote.

But while Lopez Obrador has gone to lengths to portray himself as a man of the people who will stamp out the corruption of Mexico’s ruling elites, some complain that he has given few examples of how he’ll fix the problems.

And that’s “el problema.” Lots of promises not specifics!

Mexico’s “problemas” can not be fixed by getting angry at Trump or by setting prices on crops.   

In fact, I would argue that Mexico should be liberalizing its agriculture sector. Much of the illegal immigration wave to the U.S. is about young men who leave the countryside and come north to work. In other words, Mexico’s countryside does not need more meddling from government.

As for NAFTA, Lopez-Obrador represents the left that always opposed the agreement. Unfortunately for LO, the NAFTA decision is likely going to be made before the next president takes over.

So is there an LO in Mexico’s future? The answer is twofold: Yes, there will be once again a Lopez-Obrador running for president but I am pretty confident that he won’t win the final prize.

But it’s Navidad and the election is months from now!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

 

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Written by scantojr

December 15, 2017 at 6:28 am

The Mueller probe under fire, Alabama now and other stories

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We will look back at the elections in Alabama……how does the new Senator from Alabama vote…………the Mueller investigation is in crisis and may implode very soon……talk of another independent counsel is growing………….George Washington died on this day in 1799………….’Saturday Night Fever’ made its debut in 1977………..plus other stories of the day…………

Click to listen:

Source: The Mueller probe under fire, Alabama now and other stories 12/14 by Silvio Canto Jr | News Podcasts

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December 14, 2017 at 9:00 pm

The problem with Roy Moore

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Like some of you, I thought that Judge Moore would pull this out because he was running in Alabama. Unfortunately, even a flawed GOP candidate can lose in Alabama.

What does it mean going forward?

In politics, the winners always explain victories in grand terms. We heard Jones last night speak in terms of “change” and other things.    

In fact, senator-elect Jones had very little to do with his victory. It was a referendum on Roy Moore, a very flawed candidate whose problems pre-dated The Washington Post article.

Doug Schoen has it about right in his analysis:   

Surely, Jones’ win emboldens Democrats to compete in states like Nevada where Republicans are potentially now vulnerable. To succeed, the Democrats will need more than a message of resistance or opposition, but a centrist pro-growth agenda of their own.     

Mr. Schoen has a warning for both parties, as well. I agree that the GOP needs to get more practical and choose candidates who can win elections not primaries. 

The good news is that the GOP has put the Moore problem away. In other words, no Moore circus or questions about an ethics investigation or more newspaper articles clarifying where he did or didn’t touch young women. Moore is history and that’s a blessing for Republicans who would rather talk about the tax plan.
The bad news is for Alabama and Senator elect Jones. In the summer, Jones was nominated because no one in their right mind thought that he’d win. He is the kind of liberal who usually makes concession speeches in Alabama.

So how popular will Senator Jones be in a few months? Not very and that’s what we will be talking about in 2018 until he is defeated in 2020.

In elections, candidates matter a lot. A flawed candidate usually loses, as we saw with Clinton and Moore.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

 

Written by scantojr

December 14, 2017 at 6:39 am

Posted in US politics

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Alabama the day after, Deputy AG before the House, Bush-Gore 2000 & more….

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We will look at the elections in Alabama……where does Senator elect Jones go from here? He is to the left of the state on every major issue…….what are the lessons for the GOP?…the Deputy AG before Congress talking about the Mueller probe…………Bush vs Gore finally settled on this day in 2000……….Happy # 92 Dick Van Dyke……..plus other stories of the day…………

Click to listen:

Source: Alabama the day after, Deputy AG before the House, Bush-Gore 2000 & more 12/13 by Silvio Canto Jr | News Podcasts

Written by scantojr

December 13, 2017 at 2:00 pm

Bullets rather than samba in Rio!

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Violence in Rio is a major problem, specially if you are an innocent bystander at the wrong place at the wrong time. This is a report by Sebastian Smith:   

While the fighting in Rio de Janeiro’s crime war is done by commando-style police and heavily armed drug traffickers, a growing number of the victims look quite different: innocent, joyful children like Maria Eduarda.

Firefights erupt in densely packed, poor favela neighborhoods, leaving thousands of people with nowhere to hide each time the shooting, involving Kalashnikovs and other military grade rifles, begins.

AFP has investigated the stories of those caught in the middle, like 13-year-old schoolgirl Maria Eduarda, in a new multimedia report: “Stray Bullets: violence and broken lives in Rio.”

With around 60,000 murders a year, Brazil is among the world’s most dangerous countries. 

 

Rio, host of the 2016 Olympics, has long been one of the hotspots.

But as AFP’s investigation highlights, stray bullet incidents add a cruel twist to the wider crisis.

People are shot outside church, in parks or in restaurants, in daytime or at night. Since the cheap construction of favela houses will not necessarily stop a bullet, even staying at home can be dangerous.

 

As Mr. Smith points out, victims of stray bullets often go unreported. Nevertheless, 60,000 murders is a mammoth number.

Rio de Janeiro has a population of 6.5 million, second to Sao Paulo. It is also the sixth largest city in the Americas. 

Not long ago, a Brazilian friend introduced me to the Rio Times, an English newspaper. My friend said that the reporting on crime stories would shock me, and it did.  For example, a story from this week tells us that 126 police officers have already been killed this year.    

The violence in Rio has had a major consequence in state prisons, where gangs are constantly at war with each other. Just recently, the federal government sent troops to control the violence in many of the worst prisons in the world. As my local friend told me recently, they kill each other in Rio or at the state prisons!

Very bad for Rio, a city once known for “samba” rather than stray bullets!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

 

Written by scantojr

December 13, 2017 at 6:45 am

Alabama finally, social media and discourse plus other stories

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We will look at the elections in Alabama……what happens if Moore wins? if Jones wins? Senator Gillibrand calls for President Trump’s resignation……more staffing issues with the Mueller probe…..Trump lawyer calls for independent counsel for the infamous dossier……social media and civil discourse….Rep Lewis skipped the civil rights museum because of President Trump……violence in Rio at alarming rates…….Our Lady of Guadalupe Day…….Frank Sinatra 1915-98……..Happy # 77 Dionne Warwick………….plus other stories of the day………..

Click to listen:

Source: Alabama finally, social media and discourse plus other stories 12/12 by Silvio Canto Jr | News Podcasts

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December 12, 2017 at 7:00 pm

A bad day for Representative John Lewis

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As we learned on Saturday, Representative John Lewis of Georgia skipped the opening of the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum.   

According to news reports, Representative Lewis was joined by Representative Thompson:   

“After careful consideration and conversations with church leaders, elected officials, civil rights activists, and many citizens of our congressional districts, we have decided not to attend or participate in the opening of the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum,” Lewis and Thompson stated. “President Trump’s attendance and his hurtful policies are an insult to the people portrayed in this civil rights museum.”

The duo said that the civil rights struggles represented in the new museum “exemplify the truth of what really happened in Mississippi” but President Trump’s “disparaging comments about women, the disabled, immigrants and National Football League players disrespect the efforts” of Mississippi’s greatest civil rights champions.

“After President Trump departs, we encourage all Mississippians and Americans to visit this historic civil rights museum,” Lewis and Thompson stated.

Shame on Lewis and Thompson.   

It’s a shame that many black Democrats have decided to play the race card against President Trump.

First, did Lewis or Thompson ever call on fellow Democrats to return the campaign donations that Trump made to their party over the years? Or the Clinton Foundation? Hillary Clinton campaign?

Second, what about Jesse Jackson? Did anyone disown Jackson when he took Trump money and said nice things about him? I don’t remember that either.

What’s going on? The race card and that’s it. Most black areas are underperforming in every way, from lousy public schools to job creation.

Representative Lewis and Thompson, or the “duo”, should have gone to the museum and listened to what President Trump wants to do for public education in their districts. It would show that “the duo” wants to move forward rather than live in an ugly past that Mr. Trump had nothing to do with.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

 

Written by scantojr

December 12, 2017 at 6:37 am