Multinational Monitor

MAR 2001
VOL 22 No. 3


Fox, Inc. Takes Over Mexico
by John Ross

Labor After the PRI: Will Fox Ride Roughshod Over Mexican Workers?
by Dan La Botz

Hope for a New Dawn in Chiapas
by Subcommandante Marcos


The Democratic Opposition: Challenging Mexico's New Corporate Clan
an interview with
Carlos Heredia


Behind the Lines

Resistance is Not Futile

The Front
Taiwan's Power Struggle - The WTO's Yes Men

The Lawrence Summers Memorial Award

Book Review
The Zapatista War Against Oblivion

Names In the News


Mexico's New Democracy: The Real Thing?

Scene outside the peace negotiations between the
federal government and the Zapatista National Liberation
Army (EZLN), San Andres Larrianzar, Chiapas, Mexico, 1995.

Fox, Inc. Takes Over Mexico

by John Ross

On July 2, 2000, Vicente Fox, the candidate of the conservative National Action Party (PAN), became the first member of Mexico's opposition in seven decades to take the presidency away from the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), heretofore the longest ruling political dynasty in the world. The Fox upset of the aging ruling party involved smoke and mirrors, a dazzling display of media marketing replete with negative TV ads, designer polls and U.S.-style image management engineered by such high-paid political consultants as Dick Morris, Bill Clinton's former prized advisor. But mostly Vicente Fox soundly thrashed the PRI because Mexicans were ready for a change after 71 years of top-down, authoritarian rule that thrived on rampant corruption and brutal violence.

On December 1, Vicente Fox was sworn in as Mexico's first-ever businessman president - his PRI predecessors have all been revolutionary generals, shady lawyers and, for the last 20 years, technocrats trained as economists at prestigious Ivy League universities. Who is this 6'6" upstart who finally toppled what novelist Mario Vargas Llosa once termed "the perfect dictatorship" from power? MORE>>

Labor After the PRI: Will Fox Ride Roughshod Over Mexican Workers?

by Dan La Botz

Vicente Fox is president of Mexico, the National Action Party (PAN) is in power, and that means that many things will be changing for Mexican workers. Just how they will change is a matter of debate. Fox promises that both employers and workers will get a fair shake in the new political and economic order. He talks about productivity, but also about ending the old abuses and promoting workers' rights.

There is no question that the old system of labor relations in Mexico, in which workers either went without union representation or were forced into corrupt unions affiliated with the ruling party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), is in desperate need of reform. And with the PRI out of power for the first time in 70 years, the virtual monopoly of the PRI-affiliated unions appears set to end. Whether the new space is filled by democratic unions, company unions or no unions at all remains a question. And how will the PRI-affiliated unions will adapt remains in doubt, as well. MORE>>

The Democratic Opposition: Challenging Mexico's New Corporate Clan

An Interview with Carlos Heredia

Carlos Heredia is the director general of special urban development projects in the cabinet of the governor of Mexico City, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who was sworn in on December 5, 2000. Heredia was previously a member of the Mexican Congress for 3 years, serving on the finance, budget and foreign affairs committees. He has also been affiliated with Equipo PUEBLO, a development NGO working for 20 years on issues concerning trade and development, the impacts of multinational banks on the poor and local productive capacity. He is an economist trained at both ITAM in Mexico City and McGill University in Montreal. MORE>>



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