Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Those clever Mexicans

I noticed on Reuters (here) that the on going protests in Mexico against electoral fraud have taken a clever turn.

Protesters have taken over toll booths and then allowed motorists to pass through without paying. I imagine even motorists who voted the other way would have given a cheery wave as they motored onto the highway.

In Bolivia there are so many protests and demonstrations that often they have to contend with thrown stones and fight their way through angry truck drivers who, without actually opposing the aims of the demo, are simply fed up with having to stop what they are doing every time another group takes to the streets.

Bad ClownI've felt this a couple of times when sitting in roads, particularly on smaller, local, protests where you can see drivers become ever more frustrated at the delay. Of course we need to be robust and I have no sympathy for Sparky the Clown (report here) who is on his second arrest for attacking peaceful protesters.

In terms of profile it's always great to slow things down or stop things totally, to abstain from anything like this is to confine ourselves to the most ineffectual symbolic actions - but I guess it doesn't always get people on your side when you become a problem part of their day rather than something groovy that cheers them up.

Where as the Mexican left is both involved in disrupting the government and benefitting those who get caught up in it all - not bad PR when you think about it.

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