Saturday, July 16, 2011

International Acceptance of the PRI's Return

It's ironic that a couple of months after Enrique Peña Nieto accused the PAN of arranging an international campaign to discredit his PRI, we had, in Felipe González and Arturo Valenzuela, two big-time international figures speak the PRI's return in reassuring and, more importantly, inevitable terms.

Aguachile had the following comment on Valenzuela:
To a group of Mexican journalists, he gave his opinion of the PRI:
"I do not agree with the idea that here there is a party of dinosaurs... Frankly, I see renovation in the PRI. I see new sectors. I see new people. One has done an enormous effort to try to modernize the party."
As for his analysis, I couldn't disagree more. What "modernization" have we seen in the PR, when the "new" faces of Humberto Moreira, Eruviel Ávila, Enrique Peña Nieto etc, merely continue exactly the same clientelistic and authoritarian practices of the "old" PRI?
I agree with Aguachile on this one: the group presently taking control of the PRI entirely seems cut from the old mold, what with the nepotism, anti-democratic legislative gambits (the Ley Peña, for example), budget insanity, and the obsessive focus on propaganda and image at the expense of governing well. And I think it's even odder is that the portion of the PRI that does seem more modern, more focused on ideas and policy, is led by Manlio Fabio Beltrones, who is almost a generation older than the above group and was actually a powerful politician in the time when the dinosaurs ruled the party. Although maybe that's the reason: he knows more intimately why the old PRI approach to politics is bankrupt because he lived it, while Peña Nieto et al see it just as another method of governance, as good as all the rest.

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