News & Politics

Mexico's President Suggests Raffling Off the Presidential Plane; Much Hilarity Ensues

(Image via Twitter)

Murders in Mexico are at an all-time high, but Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has far more important things to do.

Lopez Obrador has been railing against the corrupt political class in Mexico for many years. So, is he proposing new rules governing public officials? Has he stepped up enforcement of official wrongdoing? How about taking some of those corrupt local police chiefs off the job and throwing them in jail?

Nope. Lopez Obrador is a fanatical leftist. And when it comes to major issues like the murder rate or political corruption, he sees only one solution.

Symbolism.

The problems in Mexico are nothing that a good slogan or powerful symbol can’t cure. To deal with the skyrocketing murder rate, he invented the “Hugs not Bullets” policy to play nice with the cartels who are mowing down his citizens. It may be making the problem worse, but at least it shows “he cares.”

As for corruption, it’s just too damn hard to develop policies that will create jobs and raise up the middle class. Rather than deal with corruption, he will raffle off the $218 million presidential plane — just to show “he cares.”

NPR:

At a news conference on Tuesday, López Obrador unveiled a prototype ticket for the raffle. “We already have an example done, design and all, that I am going to show you,” the president said, standing in front of a large projected image of the ticket. Many reporters laughed out loud.

Gesturing for the press corps to quiet down, López Obrador pointed to a few lines at the bottom of the image. It says the ticket fee of 500 pesos (about $27) will go toward medical equipment and hospitals offering free care for the poor. It also shows the raffle date: May 5 — Cinco de Mayo, the Mexican holiday.

This is a joke, right? The president’s office issued a statement shortly after the press conference complaining that the media just doesn’t have a sense of humor, right?

No. And the president has become a laughingstock among non-leftists who don’t understand the “power” of his symbolism.

“It feels like he’s pulling our leg, he must be joking,” 34-year-old Ramsi Jiménez says when asked about the plane raffle near downtown Mexico City. Most people stopped on the street by NPR waved off any questions, saying it wasn’t worth their time to discuss what they considered frivolous topics. Critics of the president worry he is creating a spectacle to distract from Mexico’s record homicide rate and violence.

But there are others who are having a field day over the subject, taking to song and social media.

Then of course there’s the problem of where you would park the 187-foot-long craft. Online memes abound of doctored images showing the plane vying for space on the street or in a home garage.

Or in a small driveway of the sprawling subdivisions built by Mexico’s federal housing authority.

There is something pathetic and childlike in this effort. Normal people see the incredible stupidity. It’s hard to know what’s scarier; that Lopez Obrador proposed a raffle to dispose of a national asset or that he doesn’t see that people are laughing at him.

Gesturing for the press corps to quiet down, López Obrador pointed to a few lines at the bottom of the image. It says the ticket fee of 500 pesos (about $27) will go toward medical equipment and hospitals offering free care for the poor. It also shows the raffle date: May 5 — Cinco de Mayo, the Mexican holiday.

See? The money will go to hospitals and poor people. Isn’t it wonderful that I care soooo much?

Meanwhile, the cartels continue their rampage. Lopez Obrador has proposed legalizing marijuana to deal with the crisis.

Yeah, that will help.