Home Columns “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” (OPINION)

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” (OPINION)

by Yucatan Times
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Fanaticism consists in redoubling your efforts when you have forgotten your aim.
George Santayana (1863 – 1952 )

Economic problems, drug trafficking, crime, violence, corruption and social inequality. People in extreme poverty received government help and food was not lacking. The middle class, through savings and sacrifices, could afford certain luxuries such as going on vacation or buying a car. With the arrival of salaries every week or month, families went to the supermarket to buy what they needed to live and even treat themselves from time to time.

In all social levels there was some discontent and with this came a “messiah” who promised to fix the country, put an end to poverty. In the old populist style, he offered to fix everyone’s problems. Among his promises, the ones that worked the best with people and offered the most support were the following:

  1. Strategies to address the problem of insecurity and violence.
  2. No increase in taxes, no more indebting the country.
  3. Increase in salaries. Pension for senior citizens throughout the country.
  4. Rethinking the bilateral relationship with the United States.
  5. Autonomy and independence of the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches
  6. A reform in the Constitution to be able to judge the acting president for corruption. The President of the Republic will submit to the principle of revocation of the mandate. At the end of two years, a consultation will be held so that people can decide whether or not the president should continue in office.
  7. Refineries will be built, the electric industry will be strengthened and the prices of gasoline, diesel, gas and electric power will fall.

Sounds familiar? Well, all of the above is not Mexico nor is it López Obrador. This was Venezuela and the promises made by Hugo Chávez, before his arrival to the presidency in 1999. (Watch the video of how Hugo Chavez lies to Univision journalist Jorge Ramos before his arrival to the Venezuela presidency)

  • Today, Venezuelans miss those days, before Chávez. Today, the people of that country face inflation of more than 2,000% and a gross domestic product (GDP) that has fallen by almost 40%
  • Today, Venezuela is drowning. Economically it is in ruins. Every day there are fewer companies, every day there are fewer jobs, every day there are less decent wages.

Protester yells to the soldiers: “The government is killing us. We are dying of hunger, In Venezuela there is nothing to eat”. (Photo EFE)

  • Today, Venezuela faces drug trafficking, crime, violence, corruption and more social inequality than ever in its history.
  • Today, in Venezuela, people in extreme poverty do not receive any kind of government assistance, and food. that at least before Chavez and Maduro did not lack, today simply does not exist.
  • Today Venezuela, left behind its social classes. Everyone is poor (except for a few high government officials). Vacations are permanent, savings are non-existent because there are no jobs. The days of weekly or monthly salaries, so families could go to the supermarket to buy what they need to live are long gone… there are no products in the stores.
  • Today, Venezuela faces a tyrannical, repressive and dictatorial government, responsible for the death, imprisonment and disappearance of hundreds of demonstrators and opponents to the regime. A country where, among other things, the account of the violations of women by the Bolivarian National Guard has been lost, there is no freedom of expression, there are no newspapers or journalists, there is no private property. The socialism of Chavez, the socialism of Maduro has proven to produce nothing but poverty and chaos.

Today Mexico is in the same place as Venezuela was almost 20 years ago.  People fed up. Economic problems, drug trafficking, crime, violence, corruption and social inequality.

Protests against the Mexican government (Photo: Notimex)

Today in Mexico, people in extreme poverty receive government assistance and food is not lacking. The middle class through savings and sacrifice can still obtain certain luxuries like going on vacation or buying a car. With weekly or monthly salaries, families can go to the supermarket to buy what they need to live and sometimes treat themselves.

Today in Mexico, people of all levels are dissatisfied and a “messiah” has arrived and promises to fix the country, put an end to poverty and in a classic populist style, offers to fix everyone’s problems.

Photo: Cristopher Rogel Blanquet

That “messiah” is Andrés Manuel López Obrador. He claims he is nothing like Chavez… What guaranties do we have? He speaks like him and promises the same things Chavez did. If he wins, just like populism destroyed Venezuela, who or what can assure us, Mexico won’t be next?


J.E. Urioste for The Yucatan Times
[email protected]
Mérida Yucatan, México


DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed hereby are those of the author and not necessarily thos of The Yucatan Times.

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