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Old 01-04-2009, 08:03 AM   #41
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Chinaco


I don’t know about the incompetent part, but it is a common custom to give ‘mordita’ (little bite - meaning a bribe) to the police here in Mexico.

I have held off on posting this link to our recent Mexican Adventure, but since there have been so many links in this post that are on the negative side, why not see something more positive?

Akaisha
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Bribes seem to be fairly common in less developed countries.... even with bureaus and other concerns. A little money greases the wheels.

I like Mx. Hopefully they get things under control. If we visit, we will stick with the well trodden tourist traps for now. I still working. Once I ER (next few years)... more free time will enable us to travel. I would like to visit other areas of Mx.

Of course, if Mx is still in turmoil, there are many other places to visit. I can deal with the risk of basic crime. I feel I deal with that effectively by taking normal precautions.

I saw your pictures on your site. I check it from time to time to see what you guys are doing.
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Old 01-04-2009, 04:09 PM   #42
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Thanks everyone for taking the time to view our photos. We appreciate it.

We will be putting out a pictorial this week on Oaxaca (pronounced wuh-HA-cuh). What a city! It's like the Paris of Mexico. After this one goes out, we'll have a story on Huautla (pronounced WOWT-la) which is the place John Lennon, Mick Jagger, et al went to take magic mushrooms back in the 60's and 70's.

All the best,

Akaisha
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Old 01-05-2009, 03:39 PM   #43
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New article today.

Kidnappings in Mexico send shivers across border - International Herald Tribune

"The kidnappers were targeting people with relatives in the United States, because they knew these families have money," said Santana Lujan, a local farmer who participated in the blockade. "It's left a psychosis of fear and worry."

A teacher who spoke on the condition of anonymity estimated that of the town's 400 houses, about 200 were now vacant, with 50 of them emptied in recent weeks. About half of the departing families left for the United States, he said, while the rest sought safety elsewhere in Mexico.
In an interview, the 80-year-old man who was kidnapped trembled when describing his six-day captivity. He said he was repeatedly kicked by his captors."
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Old 01-05-2009, 08:53 PM   #44
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You won't catch me setting foot in Mexico. Spent the winter in Brownsville, TX in 1989. Had a new Suburban and a 35ft Avion travel trailer. I wasn't there a week and the Suburban was gone, Over the border serving as a taxi I suppose. We've spent a few times walking over the border to their towns and always had an uneasy feeling. 1989 was the year the college student Mark Kilroy was abducted, murdered, disected and his bones ended up as a necklasses. It was a "religious" sect called the santeria. Too much weird crap goes on down there like voodoo, devil worship, etc. A different class of people. They can have it. You'll never catch me in Mexico again. Except for the resort areas, its a third world country.
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Old 01-06-2009, 10:02 PM   #45
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For those that visit Mx... you can purchase Kidnap and Ransom Insurance to compensate you if did happen. It might be worth it if you travel in risky regions.
I would be interested in learning more about this insurance. I will Google for it, but does anyone have some information?

Thanks.

Ed
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Old 01-10-2009, 01:22 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by Billy View Post
I don’t know about the incompetent part, but it is a common custom to give ‘mordita’ (little bite - meaning a bribe) to the police here in Mexico.

Akaisha
In November, in a case that shocked even those (on both sides of the border) who consider corruption endemic in Mexico, the former drug czar Noé Ramírez was charged with accepting at least $450,000 a month in bribes from a drug cartel in exchange for information about police and anti-narcotics operations.

A month later, a Mexican army major, Arturo González, was arrested on suspicion that he sold information about President Felipe Calderón's movements for $100,000 a month. González belonged to a special unit responsible for protecting the president.

Among top U.S. fears: A failed Mexican state - International Herald Tribune

Ha
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Old 01-10-2009, 05:44 AM   #47
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Okay. Now that IS scary.
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Old 01-13-2009, 05:11 PM   #48
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You won't catch me setting foot in Mexico…Had a new Suburban … I wasn't there a week and the Suburban was gone… We've spent a few times walking over the border to their towns and always had an uneasy feeling.
Quote:
For those that visit Mx... you can purchase Kidnap and Ransom Insurance to compensate you if did happen. It might be worth it if you travel in risky regions.


Quote:
Okay. Now that IS scary.


So there are two sides to this coin of going to Mexico or not.

There are those who won’t go, and those who love it here.

Those who harbor angst about the Mexican side of the border and those who chuck their homes up north in Canada or the US in glee so they can have a robust and comfortable lifestyle in the welcoming towns the country offers.

I don’t have a dog in the fight so do whatever floats your boat. I don’t sell real estate here so there’s no money in it for me and besides, it’s getting pretty crowded here as it is. People b*tch about the traffic now because there are so many (gringo) cars.

If a person’s mind is made up, there’s no point in me saying anything more about the good things Mexico offers. It won’t be believed anyway. Y tengo otra cosas hacer.

Todos las buenas, hasta la proxima vez!

Akaisha
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Old 01-13-2009, 06:32 PM   #49
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Here's one guy not afraid of Mexico.

The Adventures of Tioga and George
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Old 01-13-2009, 07:32 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Dawg54 View Post
Here's one guy not afraid of Mexico.

The Adventures of Tioga and George
See entry #3 this thread.
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Old 01-13-2009, 07:39 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by Billy View Post
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Okay. Now that IS scary.

If a person’s mind is made up, there’s no point in me saying anything more about the good things Mexico offers. It won’t be believed anyway
Hey, I am your side here. Nevertheless that article WAS scary. As is this segment seen on NBC Evening News this evening:

msnbc.com Video Player

Makes me wonder if some of us may be living in a dream world, eh.
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Old 01-13-2009, 09:09 PM   #52
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Hey, I am your side here.
Makes me wonder if some of us may be living in a dream world, eh.
What is it about this topic that makes people more interested in selling their point of view-take sides as it were- rather than look into the situation and decide how meaningful it may or may not be?

One thing certain, when Tioga G or other Mexico aficionados say, "Hey, I don't feel scared in Mexico" that is as close to meaningless as a statement can get.

Do these boosters feel that if every person who goes to Mexico doesn't get attacked and beheaded then Mexico is totally safe?

This is either extreme innumeracy or total irrationality. These reported events are random, with a frequency and distribution that is hard to pin down.

I absolutely don't care who goes to Mexico. But the range of topics on this board is getting very inbred. At least this has some reference to reported events in the larger world. Doesn't it seem just a little weird that our most popular topics are "How do you feel about...?" Maybe for a change of pace we should try "What do you know about...? And what is the source of your information?"

Somehow it is a little hard for me to place the opinion of some tourist or travel writer that Mexico is safe above the reports of police agencies of robberies, kidnappings, murders and beheadings.

Sorry.

Ha
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Old 01-13-2009, 09:25 PM   #53
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One thing certain, when Tioga G or other Mexico aficionados say, "Hey, I don't feel scared in Mexico" that is as close to meaningless as a statement can get.
Yes, I said that poorly... I should haver stated categoricly that I WAS on Billy's side but I am quickly being swayed by these News reports.

Sorry.
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Old 01-13-2009, 10:18 PM   #54
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Is Mexico the only Latin American country or 3rd world country you can consider retiring to? Then stop worrying and wait until the perceived or real violence blow over while you chill in some other tropical place where the drinks are cheap.
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Old 01-14-2009, 08:16 AM   #55
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Is Mexico the only Latin American country or 3rd world country you can consider retiring to? Then stop worrying and wait until the perceived or real violence blow over while you chill in some other tropical place where the drinks are cheap.
I'd consider Panama (based on past vacation there) if I live long enough that the cold starts to bother me.
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Old 01-16-2009, 09:49 PM   #56
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Let's put this in perspective . . .

According to this article CNSNews.com - Drug-Cartel Murders in Mexico Double in 2008--American Security Expert Latest Kidnapping Victim there were 5,376 drug related homicides in Mexico in 2008. That is a 114% increase from the prior year. Clearly there is a problem south of the border. But at the same time, the population of Mexico is 103,000,000. So the annual drug related murder rate is 0.005% annually (probably something significantly less for those not involved with drugs or law enforcement). Now according to this site http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm there were 16,929 murders in the US out of a population of 301MM for a murder rate of 0.005%.

So it would seem that your chances of being murdered in Mexico in a drug related homicide are about the same as the chances of being murdered in the US generally (which is about 1 in 20,000). Not exactly a reason to boycott the country, in my view.
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Old 01-17-2009, 09:11 AM   #57
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Is Mexico the only Latin American country or 3rd world country you can consider retiring to?
Some people have considered Ecuador and I hear Uruguay is becoming very popular as well. Friends of ours (Terhorts) have lived off and on in Argentina for decades and love it, but inflation is getting out of control right now. I heard something about the government nationalizing the people’s pensions there, which isn’t a good sign. - But I don’t know if they actually followed through with it or not.

….YrsToGo

Quote:
So it would seem that your chances of being murdered in Mexico in a drug related homicide are about the same as the chances of being murdered in the US generally (which is about 1 in 20,000). Not exactly a reason to boycott the country, in my view.
Thanks for sharing those numbers and for bringing common sense to the discussion.

Hasta luego,

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Old 01-17-2009, 11:44 AM   #58
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As a follow-up point, I'll just note that we humans are pretty terrible judges of risk. We dramatically overestimate risks that are sensational in nature, but very seldom occur (like shark attacks, airplane crashes, terrorism or Mexican drug violence) and dramatically underestimate the mundane (like automobile accidents). There were 41,000 automobile related fatalities in the US in 2007. So your risk of dying in your car is 3 times greater than your risk of being murdered, either here in the US for any reason, or by the drug cartels in Mexico.

But automobile accidents don't generate big splashy headlines. And driving is a part of life. So we ignore the risks and, pedal to the metal, zip daily down the highway at high rates of speed with oncoming traffic, and certain death, just a few yards away. Mexico, on the other hand, is, for many of us, far away, foreign, out of our comfort zone, and therefore, risky.

But I suspect that for avid travelers like Billy & Akaisha, going to Mexico and similar places is a bit like getting in the car and zipping down the highway . . . just one of the risks of everyday life.
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Old 01-17-2009, 12:04 PM   #59
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Let's put this in perspective . . .

According to this article CNSNews.com - Drug-Cartel Murders in Mexico Double in 2008--American Security Expert Latest Kidnapping Victim there were 5,376 drug related homicides in Mexico in 2008. That is a 114% increase from the prior year. Clearly there is a problem south of the border. But at the same time, the population of Mexico is 103,000,000. So the annual drug related murder rate is 0.005% annually (probably something significantly less for those not involved with drugs or law enforcement). Now according to this site http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm there were 16,929 murders in the US out of a population of 301MM for a murder rate of 0.005%.

So it would seem that your chances of being murdered in Mexico in a drug related homicide are about the same as the chances of being murdered in the US generally (which is about 1 in 20,000). Not exactly a reason to boycott the country, in my view.
I don't have a dog in this hunt, but I don't think you are comparing apples to apples--what is the overall homicide rate in Mexico? What is the drug-related homicide rate in the US?
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Old 01-17-2009, 12:43 PM   #60
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I don't have a dog in this hunt, but I don't think you are comparing apples to apples--what is the overall homicide rate in Mexico? What is the drug-related homicide rate in the US?
Agreed. But if your concern is about being a victim of drug related violence in Mexico (as articulated by the OP, see below), the relevant statistic is drug related violence in Mexico. The comparison to the US is only to give perspective.

I wasn't able to find current homicide data for all of Mexico, but the UN had this report as of 2004. http://www.unodc.org/documents/data-...s-05012009.pdf If you add ~2,500 drug related homicides to the 2004 data, you get a murder rate for Mexico comparable to the per capita automobile deaths in the US (see post above).

Here's a map showing homicide rates for the rest of the world (again as of 2004) for further comparison. http://www.unodc.org/images/data-and...e_rate_map.pdf


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Apparently the drug gangs are fighting the government and violence has risen.

. . .

Might be a good time to skip Mexico as a tourist destination.
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