Armed Men, or, ¡Ay, Sinaloa! and ¡Ay, Tamaulipas!

Looney Tunes: Sylvester the CAT

On Sunday Mexico is having elections and they will be narco-elections. I am sure interesting courses are given nationwide on the drug economy and the narco culture. I would like to develop one as well (or, actually, take one.) I wish I were an economist. I wish I fully understood the ways in which the narcos and the government are interwoven. It is not simply that the narcos are as sly as Piolín.

Today a singer of narcocorridos was gunned down in Sinaloa and I decided I should post a song by him. He turned out to be such a poor singer that I started to search for alternate narcocorridos. I became fascinated with the videos that accompany them, which are very didactic. I almost came around to the narco point of view. I concluded that the narcos must be uploading a lot of these videos in hopes of having such an effect. They block police scanners with narcocorridos, as we already know.

Then I came upon a warning video, ostensibly for a song written from the point of view of a hit man. I believe its real point was to let people know how their post-execution cadavers will look. Next I went back to reading the news, and discovered that now a candidate for public office and his staff had been finished off by commandos.

The narco-position is that the demand for drugs in the US is very high, the stream of guns from the US is very steady, and the “green poison” is what you can grow profitably now that the US is dumping industrialized agri-products on the Mexican market. So, would you prefer to starve, or to cross into the United States as an undocumented alien, or to remain at home and cultivate a crop profitable enough that you can buy a tractor, drive a new truck and wear a wool hat?

Motor vehicles are a predominant topic in narcocorrido discourse. An important reason to be a narco is to buy new 4×4 Chevrolet pickup trucks. But the cars sung about the most are those used for work: Lincoln Continentals, Hummers, and Suburbans, all very cleverly stuffed with drugs.


4 thoughts on “Armed Men, or, ¡Ay, Sinaloa! and ¡Ay, Tamaulipas!

  1. What? No Priuses or Smart Cars? What’s wrong with these people?
    Geez. Just when you think it’s bad enough, it gets worse.

  2. Hey, maybe those cars would be good camouflage for drugs — if you could fit any into them. But no self respecting macho man would be seen driving them!

    I keep trying to paste the best narcocorridos into this post and they keep not staying — I wonder if they are censored.

  3. I’ve got the videos in now.

    More ways in which Mexico is undemocratic:

    a) the false vote counting and ballot box stuffing, which is not done just by the PRI;

    b) peoples’ tendency to vote not based on point of view but on what’s “safe” in terms of what will keep them out of the way of vengeful narcos, or other agents of retribution;

    c) peoples’ awareness that if a different party than is in power, gets in power, it may fire everyone from all jobs and put its own friends in; so, they vote for whatever party is there now;

    d) the custom of passivity…

    e) what else?

  4. Days later: well, blast! I had constructed a lovely follow up post on music only, with marvelous examples of the son jarocho. The videos did not come through and I refuse to reconstruct at this time. So anyone who watches here is forced to stick with the much more uncouth narcocorridos for the time being.

    Or: I can offer the Zaizar brothers on the famous Corrido de Cananea. This is a really good version of the song; Cananea was very important in the Mexican Revolution and it has lately been in the news again. See:

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