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arbon

Feb 11, 2003, 4:24 PM

Post #1 of 28 (4392 views)

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Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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So I read the story about "Bribery",up to 3 years in jail for offering a bribe, then I checked the post about min-wages (can not see "Police" wages???).My question is;; who pays them & how much ?? & without the "Bite" what can they turn to, to supplement the income they have relied on all this time.??..... (Links below)

http://www.miami.com/...ws/world/5157255.htm

http://www.mexicanlaws.com/Minwages2003.htm



Mabel

Feb 11, 2003, 4:35 PM

Post #2 of 28 (3978 views)

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Re: [arbon] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Perhaps those corrupt police will go to some other , more lucrative profession. And their positions will be filled by those who did not have the skills to make a better living and will be content with the lower wage........

It only works if anyone pays attention to it....

Just another way to shakedown people...... Instead of paying 200 pesos for "making an illegal turn" you will pay 2000 pesos to "stay out of jail for 3 years".......

Exactly who is it that will prefer the charges against the perpetrators? The police, who, heretofore were supplementing their income with bribery income ???? Lotsa Luck.......

You can't clean up crime by passing new laws....... If the people wanted to obey the new laws, they wouldn't have been needed in the first place...

Mabel in Durant


jose

Feb 11, 2003, 8:30 PM

Post #3 of 28 (3931 views)

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Re: [Mabel] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

  | Private Reply
I will input my 2 cents. In my years of driving in Mexico I have been stopped 3 times by a police officer. All three times were legitimate and just cause. Wrong way, speeding, and running a red light. It is common knowledge that you should not bring up a "mordida" until the officer brings it up. Now in all cases, all three were settled on the spot. Now it is morally wrong and illegal BUT when you are visiting a city which is far from home and not familiar with the area, what are you to do? The police have a right to take your licence from you. Do you mean to tell me that you should stop what you are doing and seek a office of Transito or Comandancia and spend who knows how much time and effort to pay a ticket? The way it is set up now is just way to enticing to give out a bribe. I paid 30 pesos for going the wrong way, 40 pesos for running the red light and 100 pesos for speeding. Wrong? Yes. Convinient? Yes. Locking people up is not the answer. Getting a decent wage should be more of a priority. A friend in Mexico is a Police Officer in Guadalajara. He makes what amounts to be about 600.00 dollars a month. Do you think that is a decent wage? I still don't see how he does it, but he manages to raise a wife and 2 kids with that. Until there is a real wage adjustment, they can put up more than two hundred cameras on city streets and bring in Gulianni and whomever they wish, but I do not see a big differnce.


arbon

Feb 11, 2003, 9:03 PM

Post #4 of 28 (3903 views)

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Re: [jose] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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"A friend in Mexico is a Police Officer in Guadalajara. He makes what amounts to be about 600.00 dollars a month. Do you think that is a decent wage?" No I do not!

But I do not know where the money comes from to pay them,?

¿from property tax, income tax or where ? & how about a place like Talpapa,or Cd Guzman.

¿Do police wages all come from the same source? Federales?




Travis

Feb 11, 2003, 11:16 PM

Post #5 of 28 (3881 views)

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Re: [arbon] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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6,000 pesos a month is a pretty good living for a married man with two kids in Mexico. I have friends (police) who earn less (3500 pesos) in Aguascalientes, and they tend to live just fine. One must remember that our standards of living are not the same as Mexican standards of living. We are accustomed to stop at any 7-11 and buy a Coke whenever we desire; however, in Mexico, that Coke always takes a second thought. There are two different cultures that come into play here, and we cannot forget that ours is secondary to the Mexican culture because we are only lucky enough to be visitors in this wonderful land of beauty. (This is a biased opinion, as I am a US citizen with a Mexican wife.) Mexico is what it is. Our "professional" opinions ||| "valen para pura madre" l l l are unimportant, even though Mexico is one of the most corrupt nations on the planet. Mexico es lo que es. Ama la o deje la (love her or leave her). We can opine; however, we must realize that our opinion will never change the course of Mexican culture or society, no matter how hard we try. Let's start our own fre web site forum. Email me with ideas. trav6dy@aol.com



Travis


keith

Feb 12, 2003, 9:24 AM

Post #6 of 28 (3827 views)

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Re: [Travis] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Those police friends who are doing ok on those small salaries. Gee, does this take Sherlock Hemlock to figure out? When they start hauling corrupt police officers up before judges, the judges will get a bigger cut of the take.


jose

Feb 12, 2003, 2:05 PM

Post #7 of 28 (3783 views)

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Re: [Travis] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Good afternoon Travis. I would just like to make a couple of comments to your statements. Now I will agree that 600.00 dollars a month in Mexico is considered by Mexico standards a decent living. However, I believe that since Nafta and the opening up of the economic sector prices have been inflated pretty much to correspond to Dolarization ( I don't know how you would spell it) of the economy. I remember when my Dad used to take us to Dinner and all four of us would eat dinner and sodas for what would amount to be $1.50. Now, I don't care where you eat, that is at a local cenaduria or a street vender, you are not spending less than $5.00 for the same meal. Still inexpensive but in dollar terms it has an inflated price. The Mexican Government has shown with formulas and figures that an actual family of four can survive off of minimun wage. About 4 dollars a day. Incredible. Well if you live in the stone age and eat nothing but tortillas and milk and live on the roof of a one bedroom apartment and peddle clothes and never leave your house then there is a possibility you might survive at that wage. Maybe I am looking at this through American point of view but nowadays everybody wants a car, vcr, telephone, and all the "basic" essentials that you would consider normal. I went out many times this last visit to restaurants, museums, shows, and entertainment and I never felt that I was getting a "deal" in dollar terms to these events. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy myself when on vacation and don't fret about spending money. But my heart goes out to Millions of Families in Mexico who have worked hard to make a living but cannot do something as simple as go to a "Dennys" or something comparable at least once a week. My two cents worth


Travis

Feb 12, 2003, 3:05 PM

Post #8 of 28 (3756 views)

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Re: [jose] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Jose,

Are those two cents in dollars or pesos? J/K. I can appreciate your point of view as a tourist on vacation in Mexico, as you represented yourself. Mexicans are accustomed to living on lower wages, and I am not saying that is how it should be. Ideally, the entire world population would be earning and spending just as any first world country; however, that would not be feasible. If the entire world population were earning and spending equal to that of any first world country, the world economy would come to a virtual halt. The first world countries depend on the lower wages paid in third world countries to maintain their nation's retailers' ability to maintain low prices and its level of comfort. I believe that a policeman living in Guadalajara, making $6,000 pesos a month makes enough to live on an go out to eat at least once a week. My father-in-law makes ten times that, but his family only goes out to eat once a month. Customs in Mexico are very different than those in the US and Canada. We are accustomed to "the finer things" in life, i.e. satellite television, DVD players, CD players, and central heat and air. These amenities have softened our world view, and we have become unrealistic in our expectations of the quality of life available to inhabitants of other countries. I don't mean to tread on anyone's sandals or boots; however, that is my view of the way the world's economy works. There's my 2 Euros worth.


Mabel

Feb 12, 2003, 3:15 PM

Post #9 of 28 (3756 views)

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Re: [jose] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Hola Joe,

Of course you are correct in your assertions that things cost more now and that $600 a month may not be a sufficient income to live a desireable lifestyle, even living as a Mexican in those areas where the costs haven't skyrocketed due to the rich foreigners.

However, it appears that you are also making the case that bribery as a way of life is a valid way of dealing with this. Perhaps this is the view of the majority of Mexicans. Generations of this practice have institutionalized it and , probably, it's considered the most efficient way to deal with low salaries, whether from police or from clerks or whoever.

But, you will absolutely fail to convince someone from the US or Canada , who does not have this institution, that giving someone who has a badge and a gun the right to demand tribute from a citizen who has no real authority at all is anything more than highway robbery. In my entire life, I have never had to pay a bribe. No one that I personally know has ever spoken of it. And the only times I ever hear of it are 1) on television programs or 2) on Mexican FORUMS....... I know it happens in the US/Canada, .... it has to, occasionally, people being what they are..... but it is fairly rare ...... ESPECIALLY since the trouble you can get into when you offer a bribe to an honest cop/inspector/clerk is a hundred times worse than if you just pay the ticket anyway.........

As far as whether the "new law" to imprison anyone who offers a bribe will work, I have my doubts. If a cop has been raking in a few pesos by "accusing" people of double parking, he will also accuse people of "offering bribes". The cornerstone is to have a MAJORITY of honest cops, first, or it won't work. Now, can you comment knowledgeably on whether bribery is a BIG problem in Mexico ? V. Fox seems to think so. Guiliani seems to think so..... And most of the Hispanic newspapers which I read seem to have Mexico police corruption stories in them every day.

As long as this is a way of life, and is defended by the Mexican "man on the street" as a valid way to raise the pay of the police........ it will remain...

But that's just my opinion.

END OF BREATHLESS RANT !!!!

Que te vaya bien,

Mabel in Durant (...... Queen of the Thigh Whackers ...)


scott

Feb 12, 2003, 6:31 PM

Post #10 of 28 (3733 views)

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Re: [Mabel] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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But, you will absolutely fail to convince someone from the US or Canada , who does not have this institution, that giving someone who has a badge and a gun the right to demand tribute from a citizen who has no real authority at all is anything more than highway robbery. In my entire life, I have never had to pay a bribe.

Thats a pretty big generalization, don't you think? You are speaking for 300 million people there.

And I for one, being from Canada, fully support settling traffic fines directly with the transitos. I got a ticket on my bike this weekend, and I fully accept responsibility. It was my own fault, but it is sure better to be harassed by the transitos, once in a while, than not being able to do that thing at all back home in Canada.

By the way, as foreigners, we don't have to offer bribes. You just play dumb and ask "Pero señor, no sé donde tengo que ir para pagar el ticket".

People like you Mabel, who are pretty naive to begin with, people who come to Mexico expecting it to be just like home, where everything is done by the book, in the end you're just going to get screwed. Thats not how Mexico works. Let Mexico worry about their own problems, you're not allowed to get involved anyway. In the meantime, just accept it and play by their rules, not your own.


(This post was edited by scott on Feb 12, 2003, 6:41 PM)


arbon

Feb 12, 2003, 6:52 PM

Post #11 of 28 (3713 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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"People like you Mabel, who are pretty naive to begin with, people who come to Mexico expecting it to be just like home, where everything is done by the book, in the end you're just going to get screwed. Thats not how Mexico works."


But with a some help, Mabel can become "worldly" & not get "screwed".



jose

Feb 12, 2003, 7:14 PM

Post #12 of 28 (3712 views)

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Re: [Travis] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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I would agree with your statements but I feel that peoples buying power has dimminished and THAT was one point I was trying to make. Not exactly what what in dollars people are currently making but what THAT amount buys. If Mexico's goal is to one day become First world then that should be an argument. I will give you one example of how this works. My wife and three kids decided one day to tour the Museum in Downtown Guadalajara. We take a taxi from my father in laws house to "el centro": 30 pesos We go to the Ripleys believe it or not musuem. 30 pesos per person=150 pesos. We go window shopping and my wife decides that she has to have some boots that are displayed. 450 pesos. Now the kids are hungry and we go to Chatas on Juarez by Sanborns. 300 pesos including tip. Taxi ride back home, another 30 pesos. That same evening we go out for Bionicos ( Fruit that is cut up and served with sweet cream and granola or raisins : really good ) another 60 pesos. I know this is not typical of most mexican families but I didn't do anything out of the ordinary. Food at the restaurant in dollars terms was not that cheap. Neither were the shoes. I know we are not comparing apples to apples but I would get your point if you said that that same 6,000 pesos on a monthly basis would go farther. My earlier point ( I'm bad at making them) was that cost have risen so much in terms of inflation that it has way surpassed the cost of living. A former co-worker once told me that he used to be a school teacher in Aguascalientes. We did not go over figures but told me that at one time, his salarie was enough to make a living. Not lavish but could afford to sustain a house and maybe get an old beater. Now that salarie was not enough to get even the essentials. In many respects you spend the equivalent of dollars. Anything electronic or imported. Cars and gasoline and anything asociated with parts ( new ) and oil are also expensive. Of course I can't argue about the 100 peso doctor visit or a 250 visit to the dentist wich includes a filling and a cleaning. Ok lets just say that you make 6000 pesos a month and you need to fill up your tank and need to change the oil. Rent might be cheaper but that VCR and that TV and Electricy and that phone bill are not. Oh but if you get sick chances are its pretty cheap. My two cents worth.


Mabel

Feb 13, 2003, 5:45 AM

Post #13 of 28 (3690 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Scott edited and replied.... thusly :

(Mabel)But, you will absolutely fail to convince someone from the US or Canada , who does not have this institution, that giving someone who has a badge and a gun the right to demand tribute from a citizen who has no real authority at all is anything more than highway robbery. In my entire life, I have never had to pay a bribe.

(Scott) Thats a pretty big generalization, don't you think? You are speaking for 300 million people there. And I for one, being from Canada, fully support settling traffic fines directly with the transitos.

Mabel replies:

You are right. I was over-generalizing and I apologize. However, from your reply, it is pretty apparent that "you" yourself are one of those who DOES have the institution of mordida. Regardless of where you live. I know it happens in Canada and the US, I've just never run into it.

I think you will be right at home in Mexico, and I fully support your paying your fines with the transitos whenever you are able. And I hope that you are never ticketed improperly by a transito that needs to supplement his income. I wish you only the best.

Mabel ( worldly, but still screwed occasionally )


arbon

Feb 13, 2003, 3:13 PM

Post #14 of 28 (3649 views)

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Re: [Mabel] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Mabel replies:

"You are right. I was over-generalizing and I apologize. However, from your reply, it is pretty apparent that "you" yourself are one of those who DOES have the institution of mordida. Regardless of where you live. I know it happens in Canada and the US, I've just never run into it."

This table may help explain why you never ran into it.
http://www.finfacts.ie/corruption.htm

Canada 7th...USA 16th....Mexico & Colombia 57th


(This post was edited by arbon on Feb 13, 2003, 3:17 PM)


Mabel

Feb 13, 2003, 3:32 PM

Post #15 of 28 (3638 views)

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Re: [arbon] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Good information, Arbonicus !!

So much for our plans to retire in Bangladesh.....

It looks like, in general, the poorer the country is, the greater the corruption.

I would venture to say that such a generalization would hold true for areas INSIDE each country, also. For instance, lots of poor ethnic minorities around Washington DC, New York, Los Angeles and I just bet the corruption levels are pretty high there.

Very few "poor" enclaves like that around Durant, Oklahoma,... Allen, Texas,..... Spring Hill, Florida ---( small towns)...... so I suspect that's why I've never run into it....

So, given that a person has the freedom to choose where to live, the choice is pretty obvious to us for the expectations we have in retirement.

Been there, done that, and it's working pretty well......

I'm really glad we spent enough time in Mexico before buying a house there to learn that it's not what we really wanted out of life.....we woulda been stuck if all we had was the info from an INTERNET forum....

Mable


CanMex

Feb 14, 2003, 9:27 AM

Post #16 of 28 (3616 views)

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Re: [Mabel] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Mabel?

"For instance, lots of poor ethnic minorities around Washington DC, New York, Los Angeles and I just bet the corruption levels are pretty high there."

So what you are saying is that the poorest people are those who pay bribes? Where do they get the money for that?

It's been my experience that people with means, are the ones, who would rather pay than go to the trouble or shame or legality of the matter.

Most of the bribes are paid by rich people and/or companies who want to obtain something that would not be legal or possible any other way. (or easier and/or cheaper for that matter).

There's probably more bribes paid in Washington DC, (amount of money wise) than anywhere else in the world, and not by "poor ethnic minorities" .

I myself have never knowingly paid a mordida, I say knowingly because I have unknowingly paid more than regular price for certain things, more so way back than now.

I do not believe in it, can't afford it and don't want to promote it either.

Luc


scott

Feb 14, 2003, 10:38 AM

Post #17 of 28 (3602 views)

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Re: [CanMex] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Most of the bribes are paid by rich people and/or companies who want to obtain something that would not be legal or possible any other way. (or easier and/or cheaper for that matter).

That might be so higher up in government, but not at the street level. Paying your fine to the transitos is a lot cheaper than asking for your ticket instead. Its a matter of 50 pesos versus 400 pesos.

It's hard to even call it a bribe. Its just the way it is, around here in this city at least.


CanMex

Feb 14, 2003, 11:36 AM

Post #18 of 28 (3591 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Scott,

Traffic mordidas, are just a small fraction of briberies, money wise and quantity wise, and $400 pesos is a bargain as far as traffic fines.

In Qc Canada most traffic fines are $100. or above. The last ticket I got was in Texas, 65 MPH in a 55 MPH, by the way it was a traffic trap at the bottom of a hill right at the 55 MPH marker, and that fine was somewhere around $120. US. And the one before was long enough ago that I do not remember.

In Mexico I had a close encounter 6 years ago, where I turned on a yellow turning red, right in front of a Motor bike cop, he pulled me over, gave me a lecture on how dangerous that was, and he crossed his wrist to show, he could arrest me and was talking so fast that I could not understand half of what he was saying, I agreed with him, apologized, told him I was distracted because I was trying to find a street sign, that I was not going to do that anymore, he started calming down got on his Motorbike and drove off.

This was in Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, practically no expats and only the occasional tourist, most spend one night and move on. Maybe this is an example of why mordida is so bad where expats and turistas just fork over money without even being asked for it.

That same year I had met a Canadian in McAllen who was coming back from Acapulco, and was bragging that he did not get any tickets all the way, and it only cost him $200.US in Mordida, he went on to tell me his secret when he was stopped he would put a $20 bill in between his Registration and Drivers license, and hand it over.

No wonder some cops expect a mordida, if they just get it automatically. I always wondered if the cops were not calling ahead to other cops and telling them, stop that crazy Canadian and he will hand you a $20 bill.

Luc


scott

Feb 14, 2003, 12:38 PM

Post #19 of 28 (3576 views)

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Re: [CanMex] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Cheap by Canadian/US standards, maybe. But 400 pesos is a hell of a lot of money for the average Mexican. And I too consider that a lot of money, for a silly minor traffic infraction.

What would it be like if all the cops actually enforced the traffic laws? In Canada, paying $40,000 or whatever a year to a traffic cop, you can only get so many. How would you like it if back home they were actually able to hire hundreds upon hundreds of traffic police, being paid at Mexican wages? So that everytime you go 1 km over 80 on the highway, theres a high probably of getting a ticket, because there is a perfectly straight cop around every corner? That would really be bad. So sure it works in Canada when you only have half a dozen cops out and about at any given time, but picture Mexico (Morelia), with cops everywhere you look, and if they were all straight and enforcing every minor traffic violation, at the full price?


CanMex

Feb 14, 2003, 2:26 PM

Post #20 of 28 (3557 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Scott,

You just gave me another reason for keeping away from expat and tourist areas. I do not know the Mexico you are talking about.

I drove from Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas to Santa Maria Del Oro, Durango and back, which is nearly Coast to Coast. and I do not remember seeing one cop a lot less one giving a ticket or myself getting a ticket. Ciudad Victoria is the Capital of Tamaulipas, approx 200,000 population and you can go days without seeing a cop you see more vigilantes in parking lots than you can see cops. Abasolo, Tamaulipas a Pueblo and they have a few cops with a pickup truck for the whole Municipio de Abasolo. When I was in Santa Maria Del Oro, Durango they had 2 pickup trucks that spent more time hauling people from out in the Municipio than anything else. As a matter of fact I have never seen a cop stopping a car except me.

Luc


scott

Feb 14, 2003, 3:38 PM

Post #21 of 28 (3542 views)

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Re: [CanMex] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Ciudad Victoria is the Capital of Tamaulipas, approx 200,000 population and you can go days without seeing a cop you see more vigilantes in parking lots than you can see cops.

That is why I put Morelia in brackets, I'm speaking about what I see here. And trust me, there are lots of police and traffic police here. There are big scary cops that ride around on big black motorcycles, traffic cops on motorcycles who seem alright, the old laid back transitos downtown directing traffic, and the transitos who have their own nice cars, who I think are the most likely to hassle you, and then of course there are the pickup truck police, sometimes packed full 3 up front, 5 in the back, then there are the pickup truck police who drive around the neighborhood every hour or two just to keep an eye on things, and then the non transito cops who are in nice cars too, they must be detectives or something. And then there are uniformed auxiliary police toting big guns at some stores and banks, auxilary police who really don't look that professional, and veladores who ride around on scooters who call the police when they see something bad...There are tons of security/police personnel around here. I don't see many federalis in the city, but the odd time you do. A couple hours ago, a lone pickup truck cop just parked out front of my house for 30 minutes, who knows why, he was just sitting there watching the street corner I guess.Oh, and there is a military base 1 1/2 - 2 km from my house, so I am seeing military vehicles driving around now too. Oh, and come to think of it, I think there are the odd "tourist police" protecting the downtown area as well.

By the way, this is a city of I believe 1 million people, so I'm sure its going to be a little different than whatever little town your wife is from.

Do you guys really believe the experiences I share and things I say I see have no basis in fact?

Just as I may not know northern Mexico (I've driven from Laredo to Morelia and back, but didn't really go sightseeing), you can't speak about mid-western Mexico either.


CanMex

Feb 14, 2003, 5:35 PM

Post #22 of 28 (3528 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Scott,

I did not doubt what you were talking about, I was merely pointing out the differences within Mexico. Sure did not intend to offend you.

I said I did not know the Mexico you were talking about, meaning exactly that. I have been keeping away from expat and tourist areas. I should include Mexico City and Border towns.

I think you must admit that there is a lot more Mexico without expat and tourist, than there is with.

So if we are going to generalize, I would think we should take in consideration the Majority of Mexico.

Luc


Mereja

Feb 14, 2003, 6:15 PM

Post #23 of 28 (3520 views)

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Re: [CanMex] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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CanMex,

Scott says:

big scary cops that ride around on big black motorcycles...

Scott must be in some other Morelia, Michoacan or something. I was just there in October and November and I sure didn't see very many policemen, not any more than other big towns in Mexico. I drove to Morelia and around Morelia everyday for a week. And I've visited there every year for the last 14 years.

Traffic fines are not 400 pesos. My husband got one two years ago. He went through a red light. He decided not to pay the policeman right then. He went the next day to pay his fine and get his license back. The fine was equivalent to $8.00 US. The reason why I remember is that it was almost equal to getting another license here in the US. My husband decided to pay if it was equal to or less than replacing his license when we got back home.

You know when you just buy a car or are thinking about buying a certain kind of car you start seeing them all over the place? Well, maybe that is what is happening to Scott. Maybe he has a reason to see how many policemen are around. It is kind of like his other comment in another post about when he first went into Mexico in Laredo, all those little kids demanding $50 from him and him being scared to death and freaking out. I wonder if they have reason to be sitting out in front of his house watching it, or the street corner near by.


scott

Feb 14, 2003, 7:20 PM

Post #24 of 28 (3512 views)

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Re: [Mereja] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Traffic fines are not 400 pesos.

Oh you say that with authority, do you. I don't care if you came to Morelia to study Spanish for a week, and go see your husbands little village. I'm telling you that I got pulled over on my 175cc trail bike for driving down the middle lanes of the ring road highway this weekend, at 70km/h, when appartently small bikes my size need to be on the service roads on the side. I was keeping up with traffic, as it was fairly stop & go congestion, but apparently after following me for 3 km they had nothing better to do and pulled me. And guess what, the ticket they wrote me was 400 pesos. I can't believe the way some of you guys think I make this stuff up. And miss I know everything about Morelia because I studied Spanish there for a week, did you know that a whole slew of new traffic laws went into effect about 2 weeks ago? Yes, they even made it law to use your seat belt and helmets. Did you know that? Did you know the traffic code was just modified? Yes I watch for cops, because lets just say learning to ride in Mexico, I'm learning to ride the exact same way they do.

I just took a quick ride, right in my same neighborhood to look for a locksmith, because I'm scared my landlords are going to rob me. Just going three blocks down the street, I went past a cop in the other direction, who incidently happened to turn his lights on right after I went by. I did on the weekend, but this time I didn't have my helmet on, because I was only going 4-5 blocks away. Of course I had to take off, so yes this is why I am usually pretty aware of what police are around me. I haven't gone out much since I got the ticket, I wanted to do some repairs to my bike first so I didn't get another ticket. For example, I broke my tail light bulb accidently, and its not fixed yet. But last night I had good reason to take my bike out, downtownish. Of course the person I was with had a KLR 650 completely loaded up with carry compartments, etc, drawing lots of attention. One cop was really checking us out. I had gone faster to get ahead and away from the cop (I could only get ahead of the other guy because I can weave through the traffic easier with a smaller bike). Anyways , this transito on a bike followed me, and pulled right up beside me at a stop light, in the same lane. He just sat there staring at me, and staring at my bike, checking it out, checking me out, etc. It was like a full minute of this, this transito on a motorcycle checking me out on my little bike (its a 97 Yamaha DT 175, for anyone who cares, this is how I get around Morelia). He didn't stop me, but this is what I have to deal with on my bike. These two things happened last night when I went out for a little while, and today just running 4-5 blocks down my street.

I'm sorry, maybe I stick out a little more, a white 21 year old running around Morelia on a dirt/trail bike, so yes I have reason to notice every single cop around me. They like to check me out and stuff. I think I stick out more than an old senior riding around in a car with her Mexican husband. So yeah.

You know, I have to say it really kind of pisses me off the way one or two or three of you think I have no idea what I am talking about, and make all this stuff up. I assure you, everything I relate on here is coming from my experiences in Morelia, and I don't claim anything else. Except for the seatbelt thing, I honestly didn't know people outside Morelia didn't think it was cool to ride with your 1 year old child in your lap, and wore their seatbelts.

So anyways, since you stated with such an authoritative tone that Traffic fines are not 400 pesos , I'd like to see you publicly state that I am a total liar and that what I just described, for example, didn't happen.

Oh, just looked out my balcony, truck number 866 sector revolucion just went past. If you think I'm full of bs, why don't you go call them up and ask them if that really did just happen at 9:08PM, as I casually looked out.

So I guess some of you, Mereja, Esperanza, Alteno, you'll be happy that I won't be sharing all these lies with you come February 20th. But I assure you these have all been real experiences. And why the hell would I pay $30USD to come here and be insulted three times in one afternoon. The other big one is Esperanza making fun of my finances, in another discussion. I'm sorry I'm not as rich as you, by the way, Esperanza & Alteno.

Damn, I swear, swear, swear that I just looked out my balcony again, with no other peeks in between, to come up with a closing, and I can see the flashing lights on a police truck 2 - 3 blocks away, in the opposite direction from where the last truck was heading.

And its not just my neighborhood, because my aunt & uncle live in a nice part of town, and police regularly patrol around there too. Oh yeah, I have family and Mexican cousins, I'm not just hanging out here by myself. So just like you get to learn oh so much from your husband and his little Michoacan countryside village, I to have family, my aunt born & raised here in Morelia with all her family, to help teach me too.


jennifer rose

Feb 14, 2003, 7:42 PM

Post #25 of 28 (3524 views)

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Re: [scott] Mexico Readies Crackdown on Bribery

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Calmate, Scott. You're right.

I live in a completely different part of town than Scott does, and I can vouch for the police presence. And the increased fines. In twenty years, I’ve been stopped by the police perhaps six times, and three times paid the fine on the spot (mordida, if you’d rather call it that). Every single time I was completely, 100% guilty as charged. The other times, all I got from the police was a lecture on my evildoings and a stern warning. About a year ago, I foolishly made an illegal left turn over by Carrillo Plaza, one of those things that happens when you’re not thinking until you’re already in the intersection and it’s too late. The big, bad dude on a motorcycle ran his siren, and pulled me over on Av. Juarez. As I reached for my purse to get the driver’s license out, wondering how much I would have to pay, he said “Put that away, and listen to me.” And he gave me the lecture and sent me on my way.

Since the new motor vehicle laws were enacted, the police are darn serious about enforcing. Everyone – well maybe 90% (and that includes me, and I’ve resisted them all along) – is buckled up. Talking on the cel phone is prohibited. Last week I drove past a disco on Camelinas on my way to the airport in the wee hours of the morning, and the police were out in full force checking for drunk drivers. 20 taxis were also lined up. A year ago, or even six months, you would not have seen this.

Now, while I’m getting in my $.02, every Mexican I know who owns a cookbook also is familiar with Diana Kennedy. And in practically every Mexican home, except the most rural or most humble, folks flush the paper down the toilet.

Now, let’s not get into personalities.
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