Regarding AMLO, I’d like to share with you a few things that most people who only know México from the news and have had little contact with the real México may be forgiven for not being aware of.
1) AMLO joined the PRI at a time when thousands of political activists, including his own peers, high school students, were being disappeared.
2) AMLO left the PRI to join the PRD only after it became clear he would not advance further in the PRI.
3) The man in charge of the computers when the system fell in the 1988 elections was Manuel Bartlett. This man later left the PRI for the PRD to become a Federal Senator for the State of Puebla (despite the fact that he only barely lived there). AMLO was still practically the biggest name in the PRD back then, and Bartlett was admitted without EVER being forced to explain his involvement with the whole “se cayo el sistema” episode. He is also the equivalent of a former Secretary of State. This man is one of the last living people who could tell us where the thousands of disappeared are buried or were burned. AMLO has NEVER asked Bartlett to return these people to us.
4) In Mexico City once AMLO became Governor, he could often be seen with this woman: https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosario_Ibarra_de_Piedra one of the most important activists after her son disappeared shortly after being accused of being a communist. He draped himself in her pain and used her to make himself look like a patriot and a “real leftist”
5) AMLO ran for president, claimed to have been robbed, continued his eternal campaign, and then, 6 years later, when his own Protegé https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcelo_Ebrard was due for his own shot at becoming Mexican President, AMLO decided he wanted to run again, and blocked Ebrard, forcing himself into the candidacy. He fell short again, and claimed to have been robbed, again. Marcelo Ebrard wasn’t a real leftist, either, but he had a real chance, and AMLO stole that from the left.
6) Today, he runs his own party, the MOvimiento de REgeneración NAcional https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Movimiento_Regeneraci%C3%B3n_Nacional known as MORENA for short, this is important because, while he refuses to say out loud that he is probably an atheist, MORENA sounds suspiciously like “morenita”, which is an affectionate nickname for La Virgen de Guadalupe https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuestra_Se%C3%B1ora_de_Guadalupe_(M%C3%A9xico) This is important because it shows his willingness to drape himself in Mexicans love for La Virgencita. As leader of MORENA AMLO has decreed himself as the candidate, again, where he will compete versus the “other” leftist candidate, from the PRD. This pretty much guarantees that the left will be denied the mexican presidency again.
7) While it will forever be impossible to verify the rumors that AMLO was handpicked to forever split the leftist vote by Carlos Salinas de Gortari himself, other theories explain even less.
8) The people worried about AMLO turning México into the next Venezuela are right to be worried, he is forever talking about “the riches of oil and gas” and how rich corporations aren’t afraid of dealing with him, probably because instead of raising their taxes he will be happy to offer them even lower taxes. He never talks about green jobs or Internet as the future or anything that makes him sound as if he knows we’re not in the 1980’s anymore. This is of course, his least worrisome trait, he has shown time and time again that much like Donald Trump, he doesn’t hold any close beliefs that he isn’t willing to flip-flop on.
9) Corruption. Almost every single one of his personal, close associates has ended up in jail. There has been leaked tape after leaked tape of one or the other of his confidantes taking bribes. which leads one to one of two scenarios, either he’s an incompetent leader who never knows what happens under his own roof, or the leader of a new kind of political cult where everyone is happy to rot in jail for decades waiting for AMLO to become President and let them go. AMLO of course, is forever having to explain that “I did not know what they were up to, I run a clean house” and at the same time “I’m competent enough to handle the presidency”. The mexican media have forever been willing to paint him as a socialist, but NEVER as a corrupt politician, which is very suspicious since more than half of them worked or are still working for the PRI. Again, being the hand-picked fake-hero that Salinas de Gortari believes México needs to stay on the right track is, if not the only explanation, certainly the most likely one.
Personally I’d love nothing more than having a left-of-center politician as the next Mexican President, but AMLO is not him. It’s one thing to “have been involved with the PRI in the distant past” but Manuel Bartlett is going to die soon, and when he does there will be no one left to question about these disappearances.
My father and his friends were in the PAN, members of the opposition back in the 1970’s when this made one a target for becoming a “desaparecido” but that is not why I do not trust AMLO. This man is about to run for Mexican President for the 3rd time, which pretty much guarantees that the next President will NOT be lefist. He has generated a cult around his personality, his supposed frugality and how he drives an old car everywhere. I have come close to hearing the siren call many times, I have *wanted* to believe in him many times, but he is NOT the Savior we have been waiting for, Mexicans believe that we need a strong man, a father figure, a messianic figure to save us, and as long as we keep believing that a single person must make the difference we will continue to fall for the charms of these snake oil salesmen.