Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Dear Professor Brink:

I expect my comment on the following post to be deleted from the site where I posted it, the weblog of a T. L. Brink. I am posting it here not to prove how clever I am-- if I were clever, I am sure I would let stuff like this lay-- but because many of our readers don't believe that any mainstream Christians attempt to defend our faith from being perverted into a disgusting political cult. Well, I do, and I think many other Christians also do and I want people who have left the church because they're disgusted with the ongoing politicization to know. At any rate, this all started from a post by Brink on a blog called El Machete 2006, where El Machete comment that the election is not over. T.L. Brink Says: July 7th, 2006 at 5:04 pm This is an interesting conspiracy theory, with much more speculative theory than hard evidence of conspiracy. At the micro level, I observed the voting and counting of the votes in three precincts, and detected no fraud. At the macro level, I notice a great consistency between the exit polls of many different organizations, the PREP, and the current counts: all show a slight lead for Calderon. As a social scientist specializing in questionnaires I think that attributing all of these consistencies between these separate polls and the IFE totals is more than a reasonable stretch. Let´s admit that Calderon got more votes on Sunday. If you want to say that the balloting was not valid because slick media duped the average voter into being afraid to vote for his own best interests (e.g., AMLO), that is another story, but don´t try to invent vote totals that don´t exist. For a different view of the election, consult my blog by TL Brink Sunday, July 09, 2006 more weight for vote legitimacy Over the last few days, the international press has weighed in on the Mexican election. From the U.S., Spain, England, and France, the election and its tabulation are seen as legitimate. World leaders from Bush (U.S.) to Martin (Canada) to Zapatero (Spain) have officially congratulated Calderon on his victory. In today´s Rumbo de Mexico, the foremost of Mexico´s liberal intellectuals, Carlos Fuentes said ¨The presidential election was transparent¨and he urged his fellow citizens to accept the rule of constitutional law. posted by T.L. Brink at 11:33 AM 1 comments ________________________________________________ (Today,) Charles said... This is one of the most incandescently dishonest posts I have seen on the election. 1. Bush and the president of Spain basically uncongratulated Calderon in recognition of the fact that the electoral process is not over. That Mexico, less PAN loyalists, regard the election as still in process became widely known some time ago, when one of the judges on the electoral court delivered a stinging rebuke to Ugalde, reminding people that the court-- not Ugalde-- decides when the election is over. At the very least, a prompt revision to your post would have been in order. Even better would have been an acknowledgement of the fundamental failure to understand the process and an apology to your readers, if any. 2. The Financial Times and The New York Times-- which some would include in "the international press"-- have urged Mexico to fully resolve the electoral disputes by doing a full and transparent count of the vote. There is a fairly obvious reason for this. Mexico has had a lot of violence lately, not directly related to the election but very much related to the people in power imposing their will on the less powerful. So if the people who voted for Lopez Obrador feel they are being trampled, Mexico could have some very rough times ahead. It is just good sense to have a nice, leisurely review of the ballots. 3. Carlos Fuentes may have said he thought the election was fair. His statement was hardly a ringing endorsement. He said that people should cool their jets and put making sure that the election was fair be placed ahead of other considerations. 4. I provided a precis of your resume to the Machete blog for their amusement. It was on that blog where I read your slap that people who doubt the fairness of the election are engaging in "conspiracy theories." Let's just say that I'm a lot less impressed with your accomplishments than you seem to be. I am especially unimpressed that you did a hit and run on a topic you evidently don't understand on someone else's blog, and demeaned them in the process. Finally, I infer from your book on interpreting dreams that you consider yourself a Christian. As a Christian, I consider you an embarrassment. 12:48 AM
Mr. Charles,

It is bad enough to read Obrador's lies printed in the once-respectable La Jornada without having foreigners such as yourself spewing your ill-informed drivel.

There has been violence in Mexico, yes. And it has had NOTHING to do with "the powerful trying to impose their will on the weak" as you very naively wrote (at least, I hope it was naiveté and not a deliberate intent to mislead).

It has EVERYTHING to do with the lower echelons of PRI and, mostly, PRD incensing people so that they would create an aura of disorder that would reflect poorly on Fox's PAN Government and, thus, cost Calderón the elections.

The strategy backfired, of course, because most Mexicans dislike violenca and, given that PRD are famous for their violent demeanour, it must have cost Obrador a few hundreds of thousands of votes.

But now, even as I write these lines, violence is coming again. This time, from the hands of these very echelons, pretending to be protesting against fraud but, in reality, presuming to take the Presidency by force (or, at the very least, putting pressure on TRIFE to yield to Obrador's ridiculous requests).

The NYT and the Financial Times may print what they want. Neither they (nor you or the PRD, for that matter) have the right to stamp over Mexican Law and the sovereignty of my nation.

The law is very clear in that it does not allow for a full recount of votes.

López knew it before the election and, still, he is going back on his word.

Now, if NYT, Financial Times and you did not know about this law... shame on you for commenting on something you don't know nothing about.

I can understand your frustration... a few thousands like you believed the rhetoric about "Latin America's left turn" and were thrilled about the idea of having a Chavez-friendly leftist government down the border.

What you fail to grasp is that by meddling in our affairs you are as guilty of imperialism as your so-maligned right-wing conservatives.

Neither they nor you have any right to impose your views on how we Mexicans govern ourselves.

It took us decades of bitter struggle to finally have an institution as trustworthy and respected as IFE and now López (with the help of probably well-meant buty notoriously ill-informed "do-goody-gooders" such as yourself) is smearing its good name just because the result of the election did not match his megalomaniacal expectations.

I say to you, Charles: Fix your own problems (Florida circa 2000, anyone? Iraq? Mid-term elections?) before meddling into the affairs of others.

I am deeply offended by your arrogant, imperialistic disregard of our God-given right to govern ourselves.

If you want to read the opinion of a REAL leftist who does understand Mexico, I suggest you read the following (if your less-than-perfect Spanish allows you to).

For your education:
Your attitude is exactly the problem with PAN, Manexpat,

You assume you know what sort of person I am and what my level of knowledge of Mexico is.

So keep your day job, don't go out for that fortune-teller's position, because your mind reading skills are lacking.

So are your democracy skills.

I have as much right to comment on Mexico as you have to post on this blog. I will not be intimidated by thugs like you.

Blaming the left for violence is part of a cookie-cutter right-wing strategy. It has been used for decades. In Guatemala, they did a body count, and found 90% of the violence was committed by the Guatemalan government. Mexico is being driven into violence not by the left but by the lack of opportunity, the lack of jobs, the religious extremism that denies women birth control, the displacement of the rural poor into cities, the drug trade and other matters that the right controls.

Ironically, the comment that seems to have driven you to this tirade was this comment I made at the U-tube site: "Neither Calderon nor Lopez Obrador is my candidate. My candidate is The Truth. Let's count the votes, vote by vote, precinct, by precinct, district by district, state by state."

You make yourself my opponent because by this post you have declared that you hate The Truth.
Spanish-speaking readers may follow the PANista echo chamber at YouTube.

They will discover that Manexpat lists his home country as Great Britain, which is why he takes it upon himself to lecture me for having an interest in Mexico.

(Manexpat Age: 36 Country: GB
Last Login: 8 minutes ago)

Oh, well, I suppose could stand for Gambia.
One would expect someone as well-read and educated as yourself to figure out what the "expat" bit of my screen name means.

So, yes, I am a Mexican particular based in the UK (although I am in Mexico at the time, because of my desire to comply with my civic duty to vote in the elections and because of other business I have to attend to).

Nothing to do with me having any issues the truth or else. A lot, however, to do with your own close-mindedness... apparently.

As for me trying to "assume" what your level of knowledge concerning Mexico is... I don't have to "assume" anything.

Your insistence on the "Let's count the votes, vote by vote, precinct, by precinct, district by district, state by state" displays your crass ignorance of Mexican law regarding elections.

You do know that Article 33 of the Mexican Constitution expressly forbids foreigners to meddle in Mexican political affairs. Don't you?

But I do seem to have struck a nerve, though (I guess it was the part where I equated you with the right-wingers).

So much that you had to resort to name calling

Oh, because I am SUCH a thug just because I had the gall to suggest you attend to your own business before meddling into the affairs of others.

However, I offer you a chance to redeem yourself and show me one single line I wrote that could be construed as "intimidating". One line will do... only there won't be any because I never "intimidated" you.

I simply spoke my mind and wrote a comment in a public forum. You snapped... case closed.

I am glad you consider me your opponent... Unlike you, I do practice what I preach.

P.S. Ironic that someone who loves "the Truth" so much should descrive himself as:

" Charles Utwater II is a real person, but that is not his real name."

I read that at

Yeah... us "PANista echo chambers" may not know democracy if it bit our behinds, but we sure do know how to google.
Still waiting for you to bring verifiable proof of your assertions about the 2006 elections, "Manexpat". All we've seen from you so far is lots of screaming and nothing resembling a fact.
Would you care to point out to me exactly what are my "assertions"?

Because I was under the impression that it was you who was making accusations of fraud and, given that in any democracy it is the accuser who must provide proof, well...

I await for your proof. Mr Dong Nguyen, of the UN, said that much today, referring to the Mexican elections which were (according to the UN observers, transparent and fair)

But, just to humour you (and as an example of how ridiculous Obrador's claims are)... here is my verifiable proof that what you said about the "urnas embarazadas" was wrong:

I just hope you don't think La Jornada is in on the "plot" againsg López.

Honestly, if you want to debate me, you are going to have to come up with something better than this.
You want more?

Here is video proof that PRD infiltrated the Teachers Union in Oaxaca:

Honestly, Mexico is not Guatemala.

Things are far from great (and not quite as fair as we would want) but progress is being made.

There is room for improvement, no doubt. I just happen to doubt Obrador is the right man for the job.

PRD is not the real left. PRD is no bid for democracy. PRD is nothing a bunch of ex-PRI thugs from the old school who want to regain the power they lost with the arrival of a yong and far-from-perfect yet thriving democracy to Mexico.

You beg to differ, fine. Just bear in mind that it is us Mexicans who must deal with our impassé on our own.

You are entitled to your opinion... but I beseech you: respect our sovereignty and our law.

Remember Art. 33 of the Constitution of the United States of Mexico which expressly forbids Foreigners from meddling into the affairs of our nation.

Think with a cool head. Don't hate me just because I happen to bear an opinion different to yours.
Would you care to point out to me exactly what are my "assertions"?

For starters"

#1: That Obrador and La Jornada are lying. You have yet to prove that one, probably because you can't.

#2: That "the lower echelons of PRI" are behind all the violence in Mexico and that your hero, FeCal, has nothing to do with it. Again, you have yet to prove that one, probably because you can't and you know it.

Shall I continue? (Oh, and I'm not even counting the clever little innuendo comments against Chavez. Again, comments made with no proof behind them.)

Still waiting for actual proof and not mindless invective, Mister Expat.
Oh, and please explain to me how this blog is violating Mexican law, as you keep claiming falsely. Or are you just being a thug and thinking that we are either idiots or cowards, to be scared away with meaningless threats and false accusations that border on libel? (Remember, Mister E., the UK's libel laws are very, very strict.)
No doubt. I struck a nerve.

I really shouldn't waste my time arguing with someone so mature as to refer to Calderón as "Fecal"

But, again. Just for fun:

Obrador accused PAN of "impregnating" vote boxes. La Jornada reprinted his accusations.

Those accusations were a lie, as was proven by the links I already provided.

So there, assertion 1 proven. López lies and La Jornada reprints his lies. I could also mention Obrador's false accusations about Hildebrando Zavala not paying any taxes at all (which, again, were reprinted by La Jornada) but I have better things to do than educating you.

Assertion 2. I think I just printed a link to a video where PRD candidates are seen infiltrating a union that has nothing to do with them.

As for PRI... I don't have the links right now, but we all know there were dealings between Miner Union Leader Napoleón Gómez Urrutia and the "obrero" branch of PRI.

The violence in Mexico took place in Michoacán and Atenco (both under PRD rule) and Oaxaca (under PRI rule). These events have had NOTHING to do with Calderón and I dare you to find anything that remotely links those events to him.

As for Chavez. You must surely know that he has helped PRD's districts in the south of Mexico.

You must also surely know that his vicepresident was one of the first to consider the elections "suspicious". So much for respect between the nations:

Jeez, this is so easy.

In any event, I have never accused your blog of violating Mexican Law, but your friend Charles is out there "demanding" a recount on Mexican forums.

Call me opinionated, but I take exception when a foreigner enters forums devoted to Mexican politics and starts "demanding" things. I am sure you would not care too much for me presuming I can "demand" the US Government do do anything in a US forum.

As I said earlier, think with a cool head and you'll see that I am not attacking you. I am exercising my right to disagree with you.

Honestly, you seem to me a little paranoid. I have made no threats, I have not even demanded anything. I am (and you can re-read my post so that you can be sure) merely suggesting you think twice before passing judgment on something you have already proven to have but a superficial knowledge of...

Still, you resort to calling me a thug and already you have (albeit timidly) threatened me with accusing me of "libel". Already you have tried to scare me with the UK's strict libel laws (although, let me remind you, I am in Mexico at the time and I am a Mexican citizen so your threat is as empty as Obrador's promises to the poor).

So there... the only threats in this blog came from you. And you came across like someone who was, however misguided, well-meant.

Methinks you should take things with a grain of salt and not take yourself so seriously.

I know I do.
Manexpat says, You do know that Article 33 of the Mexican Constitution expressly forbids foreigners to meddle in Mexican political affairs.

Commenting on events in Mexico is "meddling in Mexican political affairs?"

This is one of the more delusionally absurd comments have ever seen posted on the Internet. It transcends mere disconnection from reality to become a Josephson junction between different quadrants of the MoFo Zone.

I call you a thug, Manexpat, because of such aggressive, reckless accusations, full of all the flatulent wisdom of a drunk. Pretending that commenting on Mexico is a crime is intimidation. Even implying criminality in the exercise that basic human right, free speech, is the lowest, ugliest, most dishonest kind of intimidation, one for which totalitarian states are famous.

You laugh at the fact that I use a pen name-- just as mathematician Lewis Carroll, Chilean writer Pablo Neruda-- even the biblical prince known to us as Ecclestiastes.

Do you know any of these things? Do you know anything?

My pen name traces to detailed, well-researched, footnoted articles whose veracity can be checked. It's a pen name that discusses real issues with real people, that acknowledges error when merited, and stands up to thugs when that is merited.

And that work-- commentaries on books of the bible, political works, financial analysis, and more-- is but one finger of a much larger body of work.

You have no weight to throw around. "Manexpat" is one more anonymous ghost, without any real courage of convictions or the talent to be able to hold the attention of anyone beyond writing baloney on someone else's blog.

A no one.

Now, I could easily have deleted, or even altered your posts to humiliate you. But I have allowed you free speech, because I actually genuinely believe in it, enough to waste an hour out a ridiculously short life to try to get you to see that.

You've came what you had to say: that you despise my politics, that you think I am ignorant and a fool, that you'd like to silence me.

If you were smarter, you could have saved us both a great deal of time by delivering that short version.

And then I could tell you that I do not care in the slightest, that I will post what I want, when I want, where I want.
For one, you are not merely "commenting". You are passing judgment (which is very irresponsible, given that you lack the elements to make a learned and fair appraisal of the situation).

The immature and irrespectful way in which you refer to the man who will very likely end up as Mexico's President once this is over as "FeCal" is proof that you have taken sides and that your statement: "Neither Calderon nor Lopez Obrador is my candidate. My candidate is The Truth. " was as false as they come.

I don't care what you write in your two-penny blog. You are free to do what you want to and you need no permission to print lies and misinformation... certainly not from me.

But when you enter a forum populated by Mexicans (such as that particular youtube channel) and arrogantly "demand" a full recount, something that is not only an insult to the hudreds of thousands of Mexicans who spent the entire "2 de julio" serving their country and counting the votes one by one but also against Mexican Law (something you seem to have very little respect for) you are meddling... whether or not you admit it.

You know I am right and the fact that you and your Arizona henchwoman spewed so much venom in my direction (should I say in the direction of a "no one"?) is proof that I did strike a nerve.

So go ahead. Delete or edit my posts to "humiliate" me. You have already proven to be a hypocrite and, in any event, this is not about me...

This is about Truth. And the Truth is not negotiable.

I happen to know, for a fact, that truth is on my side in this matter.

That's the difference between you and me: I am a Mexican who deeply loves his country while you, sir, are nothing but a bored bourgeoise trying to pick a fight and morbidly rooting for bloodshed in Mexico.

I know your kind, sir. You want to see Civil War in Mexico. You want my people to die and kill in the name of your empty ideals... ideals you are willing to see other people die for but which will never be strong enough to make you get your white, well-fed behind off your comfort chair.

You, sir, are an ideological vulture, cowardly flying over the battlefield waiting to later feed on the corpses.

When you irresponsably (and falsely) describe Mexico as "resembling Bagdad" it becomes clear how narrow your vision is and how transparent you are in your desire to see Mexico become a battlefield just for your amusement (and, apparently, to spice up your otherwise boring blog).

I hope you can sleep at night, Charles.

I tell you this: If one person, ONE SINGLE PERSON dies because of this misinformation López and people like yourself are spreading... you will have to answer to God for it.

If one person dares lay a finger on my wife and daughter, incensed by the flame you so avidly (and cowardly) kindle from afar... I will make sure you learn of it so that whatever is left of your wretched conscience will be able to torture you forever.

This is no threat, mind you. Unlike you, I am not in the business of silencing people or "humiliating" them.

I am asking you to be sensible on behalf of my Country and you have refused.

So be it.

I will pay the consequences of your reckless actions... the frail stability of Mexico will pay the consequences... the economy of Mexico will pay the consequences...
he poor of Mexico will pay the consequences...

You, however, will not.

I am glad I am not a Christian. I would be sickened to be associated with people like you.
Wow. You're so brave, sitting at your computer in the UK, making threats which you falsely say aren't threats.

We didn't break any Mexican laws, and you know it, Mr. Expat Liar. But your attacks on us are coming awfully close to violating the UK's libel laws (if they haven't done so already), so please keep them up. We want to have lots of documentation of both your threats and your deceptions -- if for no other reason than to show the world what a liar you are, on this blog if not in a British court of law.
Oh, and guess what? The recount's going to happen.

Oh, and did you send any letters to the folk running The Economist, calling them the same names you called us for having the temerity to back AMLO over FeCal? I'll bet they're laughing their heads off as much as we are. (If nothing else, we're keeping you busy. You could be doing something effective to assist FeCal. Instead, you've apparently become addicted to making bizarre, nonsensical threats to the folk running this blog.)
I will refrain myself from replying in kind because you are a woman and I am a gentleman.

I will very generously grant you the privilege to have the final word.

I have better things to do than trying to convince you of the falsety of your claims.

I wish you the best of lucks and I hope one day you find the truth and the peace of mind you so evidently lack.

Well, at least you're clear that you're not doing what Jesus would have done, Manexpat. When the moment comes that you realize you need to turn your life around, think back to this moment. Someone tried to help you.

A few corrections for the benefit of readers who actually read the blog, rather than assuming their way through it.

1. It was John Ross, long-time correspondent in Mexico, who equated Tijuana to Baghdad
2. Calderon has just marched his lemmings over another cliff, having agreed to a recount that the PANistas told us would never happen,
3. At least since 1917, organized violence in Mexico has always come from the right. Ironically, the 1910-1917 revolution also started over a stolen election.
4. In 1988, an election was stolen and the left was peaceful. As their reward, hundreds of people were murdered.
5. Despite the temptations, the worst thing that could happen to the PRD is for it to engage in violence. As Lopez Obrador correctly said, violence plays into the hands of PAN. There will likely be episodes of violence committed by agent provocateurs from PAN, but Lopez Obrador has been sufficiently clear: if the review process is allowed to go forward as everyone knows it must, there will be no violence from the PRD.
6. I started posting on YouTube because a PANista, pandaluz, spammed this blog, demanding that I watch a PAN video montage. I did. I was unimpressed. I said so, trying to use some gentle humor.

This enraged the PANistas. Their subsequent behavior-- not to mention memories of Tlatelolco brought back by the indictment of Echeverria-- brought home to me just how sick and dishonest the Mexican right is. You've seen a small sample of it here. I hope it will inspire you to support democratic forces in Mexico.
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