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Let’s chat with Allan Wall about his trip to Mexico

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Guest:   Allan Wall, blogger and contributor to, will join us for a chat about his last trip to Mexico…….what is the political situation? what are Mexicans saying about the upcoming 2018 presidential election? what about President Trump…..NAFTA…..the border wall……..crime in Mexico…….plus other stories………………..

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Source: Let’s chat with Allan Wall about his trip to Mexico 08/01 by Silvio Canto Jr | News Podcasts

Written by scantojr

August 1, 2017 at 9:00 pm

Posted in US-Mexico issues

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Those ‘bad hombres’ down in Mexico

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Map of Mexico


This is one of those stories that got lost in the U.S. election and the first 120 days of the Trump presidency.  

Sadly, and I say so because I have many great contacts south of the border, Mexico is a rather dangerous place, according to a new report:   

It was the second deadliest conflict in the world last year, but it hardly registered in the international headlines.

As Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan dominated the news agenda, Mexico’s drug wars claimed 23,000 lives during 2016 — second only to Syria, where 50,000 people died as a result of the civil war.

“This is all the more surprising, considering that the conflict deaths [in Mexico] are nearly all attributable to small arms,” said John Chipman, chief executive and director-general of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), which issued its annual survey of armed conflict on Tuesday.


“The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan claimed 17,000 and 16,000 lives respectively in 2016, although in lethality they were surpassed by conflicts in Mexico and Central America, which have received much less attention from the media and the international community,” said Anastasia Voronkova, the editor of the survey.

Of course, Mexico disputed the findings, as we see via Fausta.    

My guess is that their concern is that U.S. tourists will stay away from the popular beach resorts if they read these headlines. Worse than that, the U.S. Department of State could issue travel warnings, as it did before for Easter vacations.

Frankly, Mexico is right that the violence does not affect tourists in Cancun or other popular destinations. Nevertheless, it is happening in Mexico.    
Everything is further complicated by the reality that cartels are running wild and controlling portions of the U.S.-Mexico border. Also, the fighting has been intense in places like Tamaulipas, a state south of Texas.   

So what happens next?    

It will be interesting to see what President Pena-Nieto and President Trump talk about on the phone or in person.     

I wouldn’t be surprised if Mr. Pena-Nieto whispers in Mr. Trump’s ear: “Amigo, can you give us a hand fighting these “bad hombres”?

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


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Written by scantojr

May 12, 2017 at 6:39 am

A little ‘gas anger’ in Mexico

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(My new American Thinker post)

During my four years working in Mexico for a U.S. bank, I recall two interesting reactions when Mexicans visited their friends or family in the U.S.   

The first one is that they were overwhelmed by our interstate highway system. I remember a Mexican friend asking: “Who built the roads”? I explained the history of the interstates and he replied by saying something along the line that it’s nice to see your taxes doing something good.

The second was that they were impressed by the number of gasoline stations and how people actually shopped for price. The reason for this is that in Mexico there is no shopping for gasoline since all of the stations are owned by PEMEX, and they determine the price too.   

“Cambio” or change, is coming to Mexico, as they say.

Have you spoken with anyone from Mexico over the holidays? Well, it’s all about gasoline prices south of the border these days, as we can see in this report from Bloomberg:


Mexico will raise gasoline prices by as much as 20 percent in January, stoking inflation that’s already running at the fastest pace in almost two years.

A month after the increase is implemented, prices will start to adjust on a daily basis as the government loosens its control of the gasoline market, the Finance Ministry said in an e-mailed statement Tuesday. 

January’s increase in unleaded gas will be the biggest since November 1998.

The jump in prices risks pushing up inflation at a time when a slump in the peso has already fueled concern about rising consumer prices and led the central bank to raise interest rates five times this year.

It is a risk Mexico is willing to take as the government gradually lifts controls over gasoline prices to open the fuel market to private development, a move made possible by a landmark energy overhaul in 2013.

Frankly, it had to happen, although I agree that it will hit consumers very hard and drive up the cost of anything that must be transported. The new price will be about 16 pesos a liter, or about 50 pesos a gallon, i,e, about U.S. $3. It could be higher than in the U.S.!

At the same time, Mexico can no longer subsidize gasoline, especially since a lot of it is refined in the U.S.    

Here is a dirty little secret that no politician talks about in Mexico: PEMEX sends oil up here and we send gasoline back to them. It is worth approximately US $15 worth of business to refiners such as Valero, Marathon Petroleum, and Citgo Petroleum. It happens because PEMEX spends too much of its resources on everything rather than drilling or refining.   

Of course, the solution is to privatize PEMEX and put that sacred cow away for good. Unfortunately, “vacas sagradas” or sacred cows have lots of friends in high places, so don’t expect that to happen.   

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


Written by scantojr

December 30, 2016 at 6:40 am

El Chapo can’t sleep ‐‐ or so they say

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(My new American Thinker post)

The El Chapo story is so good that a telenovela would not do it justice. Frankly, the daily news reports from Mexico are more dramatic than any TV script.   
The latest is just incredible, according to Joshua Partlow:

Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the world’s most notorious drug lord, has been having trouble sleeping.

The lights in his prison cell are on around the clock. 

The surveillance video and prison staff watch him 24/7.

 If a dozing Guzmán even inadvertently covers his face or crosses his arms, prison guards rouse him, according to his lead defense attorney, José Refugio Rodríguez.

“The conditions that he’s being held in are very drastic. He’s a victim of cruel and inhumane treatment well below the minimum standards established by the United Nations,” Rodríguez said in an interview. “This is practically torture.”

Well, he may be the victim of torture. My guess is that the word came down from President Enrique Pena-Nieto that he can not escape again.    

Beyond that, it is silly to feel sorry for a guy who specialized in cold-blooded murder.  

El Chapo has a list of atrocities that should land him in an electric chair, to say the least. This is just a partial list of them:

Boca Del Rio Massacre — On September 20, 2011, gunmen from Los Matazetas working at the time under orders of the Sinaloa Cartel dumped the tortured bodies of 35 men and women along a city highway in Boca Del Rio, Veracruz. The bodies were left behind along with a narco banner where the Sinaloa Cartel forces took credit for the murder and threatened Los Zetas.

Nuevo Laredo Massacre 1 — On April 17, 2012, El Chapo’s forces aided by the Gulf Cartel moved into the border city and Zeta stronghold of Nuevo Laredo in an attempt to take control of the border area and left the dismembered bodies of 14 men inside trash bags that had been left inside a minivan outside of Nuevo Laredo City Hall along with a narco-banner signed by El Chapo and addressed to Los Zetas. Despite the clear cartel link to the murder, Tamaulipas authorities tried to claim that the victims were not related to drug trafficking activity and that there was no war between rival cartels in Nuevo Laredo.

Nuevo Laredo Massacre 2 — On May 4, 2012, Los Zetas hung nine Gulf Cartel members from a bridge, but the Gulf Cartel and the Sinaloa Cartel responded just hours later. The response was the headless bodies of 14 Los Zetas members placed in a vehicle near the mayor’s office. The heads were placed in an ice chest also by the mayor’s office. Along with the gory find, the gunmen left a banner signed by El Chapo where he threatened the Nuevo Laredo Mayor and the local police chief for siding with Los Zetas and trying to ignore his presence.

Tubutama Gun Battle – On July 1, 2010, Sinaloa Cartel gunmen clashed with their rivals from the Beltran Leyva and Los Zetas Cartel leaving more than 20 dead near the rural town of Tubutama Sonora, just 60 miles from Nogales, Arizona. A Youtube video shows in gory detail the carnage of the battle.

Maria Susana Flores Gamez – The former Miss Sinaloa beauty queen, met her untimely death in a hail of gunfire on November 2012 in a rural area near Guamuchil, Sinaloa. Flores had been accompanying Chapo’s top enforcer Ivan “El Cholo” Gastellum when the Mexican military went after them. After a lengthy chase and gun battle, Flores ended up in a pool of blood while the military arrested multiple gunmen.

And there are probably more, smaller and less publicized.

Frankly, there is nothing romantic or nice about this man. He is a killer who shot men, women and children to settle scores with the law or rival cartels.

So let’s bring El Chapo to the U.S. as possible. The good news is that he’ll probably get a bit more sleep. The bad news is that he is not escaping again and justice will be done.

Sleep deprivation? There are thousands of Mexicans dead!

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

Written by scantojr

August 2, 2016 at 5:43 am

A look at Mexico with Allan Wall.

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Written by scantojr

July 25, 2016 at 9:30 pm

El Chapo, NAFTA, Trump and other stories from Mexico with Allan Wall

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Written by scantojr

May 19, 2016 at 9:00 pm

How not to get Mexico to pay for that wall

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(My new American Thinker post)

Mr. Trump is calling for a wall that Mexico will pay for.  It’s the greatest campaign line since Mr. Obama promised to close Gitmo and make us respected again!

Mr. Trump is apparently going to negotiate our foreign aid (primarily military assistance to fight the cartels) and erase the current trade deficit of $58 billion.

What happens to U.S. companies exporting over $200 billion to Mexico when we get into a trade war?  Mr. Trump does not say!

Does Mr. Trump understand that any change in trade with Mexico will immediately impact Canada?  The answer is NAFTA.  Canada is our largest trading partner – a $700 billion relationship!

Again, Mr. Trump does not say, and don’t you dare ask one of his supporters for an explanation.  You will just get an earful of how all of our politicians are idiots, and only Mr. Trump knows the way forward!

Like much of Mr. Trump’s agenda, saying that Mexico will pay for the wall sounds good, but reality is always more complicated, as my late father used to say.

Would Mexico pay for a wall?  They may.  They just don’t want to hear a brash presidential candidate say so in public.

Over the years, I have spoken to serious Mexicans who understand that the U.S.-Mexico border is a mess.  Some have even admitted that the Mexican government has lost effective control of the area, especially all of those little towns.  The cartels run these towns.  They own the police chief and intimidate the citizens.  It’s just hard for the president of Mexico to say so in public.

A few days ago, we heard the story that “El Chapo” had traveled to the U.S. a couple of times over the last year.  His daughter told the media that her dad bought his way out and back to Mexico.  It is an amazing story that proves the point that much of the Mexico side of the border is under cartel control.

Let me suggest a couple of things to Mr. Trump:

Wouldn’t it make more sense to negotiate the payment of the wall in private?

I’ve argued for years that Mexico would actually benefit from having a wall.  It will shut down the stuff going south, from guns to cartels walking across the border with bags of cash.

The wall will probably drive cartels to find alternate routes or use water or air to supply their U.S. customers.  Am I the only one who thinks that water or air routes will be more difficult for cartels?

The wall will also discourage Central Americans, or more recently Cubans, from using Mexico as the pathway to Texas or California.

My guess is that Mr. Trump is beating up Mexico because of the anger over illegal immigration.

However, isn’t illegal immigration a bit more complicated than blaming Mexico?  Also, didn’t someone say that half of illegals are people who flew in and overstayed their tourist visas?

Mexico pay for the wall?  It’s actually more realistic than you think.

Maybe Mr. Trump should revisit his bestselling book about making deals.  Didn’t he write something about never putting the other guy in a no-win situation?

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

Written by scantojr

March 6, 2016 at 6:55 am