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When the Mexican Rich Get Richer, The Poor Come North

LatinaLista — So what if we build a 30-foot, double-steel, reinforced fence at the border with Mexico and do random worksite raids gathering hundreds of undocumented immigrants and filling planes and buses to deport them en masse back across the border?
Will that stop the desperate attempts to reach “El Norte?”
Well, according to an article in Canada’s Globe and Mail, not likely until one major thing happens — the rich in Mexico decide to share.

Economists evaluating the Mexican economy note that economic growth has only risen in the past 20 years “slightly above 2%.”

At this rate, the gross domestic product (GDP) per capita will reach US$14,764 by the year 2028. In contrast, China’s GDP per capita, which right now is less than $6,500 , will be at US$39,000.
Miguel Messmacher, Mexico’s Finance Ministry’s chief of economic planning, blames the neglible growth on the fact that over the last 25 years “productivity growth has been zero in Mexico.”
Because of a worst case scenario between the Have’s and the Have-nots.
Wealth in Mexico is concentrated in the hands of the few — the elite of the country who have basically created monopoly empires that squeeze out not just the competition, but any chance for technological innovation and increases in productivity.
Among these wealthy individuals who have such a stranglehold on the economic future of Mexico are Carlos Slim, who took over Bill Gates’ position as the world’s richest man and holds a monopoly on the telephone system and Maria Aramburuzabala, Mexico’s richest woman whose Grupo Modelo is Mexico’s largest brewer and responsible for 60% of the country’s beer sales.
These days, if Maria Aramburuzabala gets tired of spelling her long last name, she can just use her American husband’s last name – it’s shorter — Garza, as in Tony Garza, as in the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico.

U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Tony Garza with wife Maria Aramburuzabala
The economists say that if Slim and Aramburuzabala Garza don’t start sharing the wealth and more competition is allowed into the marketplace, prices will just remain high for Mexican consumers and there will be little chance for productivity growth which means the jobs that would generate that productivity won’t be created.

And when there are no jobs, well the north doesn’t look that cold after all.

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  • brimoton
    August 15, 2007 at 6:18 pm

    I’ve always wondered why the people of Mexico spend so much of their energy fighting the U.S. governments “injustice” against the Mexican people, when they should be using that energy fighting for justice in their homeland instead. If Mexico would take care of it’s own people there would be no need to flee it. That won’t happen until it’s citizens demand reform…and fight for it. And that (human nature being what it is), won’t happen until they’re forced to stay and fight.

  • catherine
    August 16, 2007 at 1:25 am

    I’m just wondering when Americans will finally take a look at the trade agreements we sign that benefit the few and drive hundreds of thousands of people from their land to travel north in search of economic sustainability. Wouldn’t it be nice if just one US politician took responsibility for signing these agreements that benefit a few American companies and hurt hundreds of thousand in Mexico, the U.S. and sooo many other countries. Maybe Americans should stop blaming others and take some responsibility too for the politicians they vote into office. Really, do you think if those two businesspeople lowered prices or shared the wealth that poverty would be solved in light of the larger global system that profits tremendously from cheap labor regardless of whereever the people come. How about we make sure Mexicans are not forced to leave their country as a result of uneven trade agreements. Really, we are on the same page that something has to change but blaming people who are only trying to survive is not the answer, although its the easiest one. Not quite as easy as writing silly things like the above posting but a lot easier than taking some responsibility.

  • Frank
    August 16, 2007 at 5:02 pm

    The way I see it, there is enough blame to go around for just about everyone but mainly our government, the employers and the illegal themselves. Sorry, but the illegals don’t get a pass for violating our immigration laws.

  • grandma
    August 17, 2007 at 12:58 am

    Catherine, How many people does it take to sigh a trade agreement? 1? 2? Why are you blaming the US when it takes 2 to sign an agreement. Maybe you are blaming the wrong people?

  • Robert B. Diaz
    August 17, 2007 at 2:29 pm

    Thank you.
    I find the comments fascinating too. It is funny to see North Americans getting upset. From what I read you were not blaming Americans, you were simply pointing out how mega monopolies stifle competition – which you would think a true conservative would want to encourage! Instead Norte Americanos just don’t want to hear it. They would rather look at videos of “minutemen shooting at Mexicans” for fun. Don’t blame the rich! Blame the stupid poor people. What a bunch of idiots.

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