Monday, June 21, 2010

On Calderón's Attempts to Communicate

Jorge Chabat thought that Calderón had bad luck in his revamped PR strategy on security coming the same week as Mexico's defeat of France, lamented the lack of consideration it received, and wrote that it should have been reiterated by cabinet officers:
President Calderón's message is without a doubt the best text that the government has written on the issue. The analysis is deep and difficult to refute in its logic that a democratic state is based on the application of the law. Said analysis clearly maintains that the option of combating drug traffickers was the only one possible, at least within the framework of the existing laws, and that doing nothing wasn't a responsible option. The president's text truly deserved a better destiny than it has had until now. It deserved a an answer from all of those who have insisted that the war against organized crime is the cause of the deaths and that said war is a whim of the president. It deserved, in summary, a serious discussion among the political class and the media outlets that unfortunately hasn't happened and seems like it won't. The bottom line is that it's a shame that such a transcendent issue for the country, the lack of an effective communication strategy on the government's part has left the president alone ina war that, whether we like it or not, is everybody's, because after all those who will benefit from greater security or those who will see our lives destroyed by greater insecurity are all of us and not just the president.
Of course, the strategy re-release hasn't reached the end of its rope yet, and there's still time for the rest of the administration to follow up on it. But the broader reaction that Chabat is talking about, crowded out not only by the World Cup but also the Veracruz scandal, doesn't seem to be in the offing. If the president couldn't spark a conversation with a prime-time address and an accompanying article published in newspapers across the country on the weekend of the most intense drug violence of his administration (and perhaps in Mexican history), it's hard to imagine that a procession of cabinet officials following up will be able to do any better.

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