Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Learning From Mexico

I am NOT so much a “super patriot”, or chauvinist, that I believe that the other nations in the world have nothing to offer us as to ideas and their applications. Even our neighbor to the South, Mexico, has positive and negative lessons for us. First the positive lessons.

Certainly, the goal of family loyalty, patriotism and adherence to Christianity (Or, some other religious faith or morality-teachings associations) are positive and very Mexican lessons which we should review so as to better evaluate the essential goodness of the USA.

More specially, we should look to the Mexican election system for ideas which we very much need to adapt to and insist upon for our won elective processes, of which some of the examples are given below.
1.All citizens are given a verified voter ID card having a holograph and the
voter's photograph and thumb print.
2.Those cards must be presented at the polling places where they are VERY
carefully examined before voting is allowed—Usually by poll watchers from
the several Mexican political parties.
3.A paper ballot is used which, unlike some of the electronic and other voting
non-systems used in the USA or proposed for such use, allows for a ready
recount if needed.
4.The elections are run by a non-partisan governmental organization to which all parties (Including the most minor ones) have access to and some part in its administration.

Also, I believe, that Mexico is like many other nations (eg Germany) where the accident of birth in that nation does NOT make you a citizen if it---Which helps protect the culture and self-identity of such lands.

The primary negative lesson is that corruption flows from the highest level(s) of government to the lowest as demonstrated by the strange and great wealth of most of Mexico's ex-presidents and the every present fact of the mordida (“Little bite”) of expectation of bribes at every level of Mexican government down to the lowest and very petty functionary. We might consider the practices of some of our State's governors and the downward flow of corruption to those in power in our Legislatures and the higher levels of the Civil Service. (I name no names!)

Of course, some of the judicial or quasi-judicial rulings of other nations are in strict oppositions to the letter and intent of the USA's Constitution, laws and traditions. Although we may wish to consider adapting some foreign practices (eg Mexican voting rules, Irish school practices, including government payments to the schools chosen by scholars' parents or guardians, restricting citizenship to those children born to citizens, universal military training as in Switzerland or Israel) we must protect our heritage by limiting our judges to purely American laws, constitutions and legal case lest we end up with the worst of foreign government without any of the freedoms and protections we now have.

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