We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Monday, May 1. 2006
Working in Mexico
The following from a director with Southwest Bell in Mexico City:
Once they were completed Barbara and I spent about five hours accompanied by a Mexican attorney touring Mexican government office locations and being photographed and fingerprinted at least three times. At each location (and we remember at least four locations) we were instructed on Mexican tax, labor, housing, and criminal law and that we were required to obey their laws or face the consequences. We could not protest any of the government's actions or we would be committing a felony. We paid out four thousand dollars in fees and bribes to complete the process. When this was done we could legally bring in our household goods that were held by US customs in Laredo Texas. This meant we rented furniture in Mexico while awaiting our goods. There were extensive fees involved here that the company paid.
We could not buy a home and were required to rent at very high rates and under contract and compliance with Mexican law.
We were required to get a Mexican drivers license. This was an amazing process. The company arranged for the licensing agency to come to our headquarters location with their photography and fingerprint equipment and the laminating machine. We showed our US license, were photographed and fingerprinted again and issued the license instantly after paying out a six dollar fee. We did not take a written or driving test and never received instructions on the rules of the road. Our only instruction was never give a policeman your license if stopped and asked. We were instructed to hold it against the inside window away from his grasp. If he got his hands on it you would have to pay ransom to get it back.
We then had to pay and file Mexican income tax annually using the number of our FM3 as our ID number. The company’s Mexican accountants did this for us and we just signed what they prepared. It was about twenty legal size pages annually.
The FM 3 was good for three years and renewable for two more after paying more fees.
Leaving the country meant turning in the FM# and certifying we were leaving no debts behind and no outstanding legal affairs (warrants, tickets or liens) before our household goods were released to customs.
It was a real adventure and If any of our senators or congressmen went through it once they would have a different attitude toward Mexico.
The Mexican Government uses its vast military and police forces to keep its citizens intimidated and compliant. They never protest at their White House or government offices but do protest daily in front of the United States Embassy. The US embassy looks like a strongly reinforced fortress and during most protests the Mexican Military surround the block with their men standing shoulder to shoulder in full riot gear to protect the Embassy. These protests are never shown on US or Mexican TV. There is a large public park across the street where they do their protesting. Anything can cause a protest, such as proposed law changes in California or Texas.
Posted by Gwynnie in Politics at 20:41 | Comments (5) | Trackbacks (2)
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SEND THEM BACK.. send them back.............. getting tired of the open door yet seemingly non revolving door we have here in the states. I travel to Mexico on business and have to have at least one armed guard at all times. safe huh? let them go BACK and protest their displeasure in Mexico. especially if they want to wave their beloved Mexican flag here while protesting. it's one way or the other you can't have it both ways.
That's how you keep your economy in mid-third world form - despite having a vast labor pool located right next door to the world's economic superpower.
Fox has been a huge disappointment.
I case anyone doubts this, I can confirm what Gwynnie posted.
I grew up in Mexico. I remember the FM3 and FM2 processes. I remember that to renew the FM3, you actually had to leave the country and do the renewal at a consolate. I remember one time we spent a week in Laredo wasting time waiting for the renewal process to move along. I remember that my FM3 stated that I was a student and financially dependent on my father. I was expressly forbidden to work. I also remember that the process was a joke.
While I was in college in the US, I had an FM2 (FM3 = immigrant, FM2 = emigrated or permanent), but I travelled home to visit my parents using a tourist visa because you were hassled less in customs. I did this because I was considering returning to Mexico after college, but to keep my FM2, I could not be out of the country for more than 90 days out of a year. My father actually arranged for my name to appear on the roll of some tech school in Mexico to complete the deception.
Any yes, the drivers license process is also a joke. One time I went to get my license renewed with my mother. We were escorted by a member of the presidential guard police. We were walked to the head of each line and finished the whole process in about 15 minutes.
Would I consider moving back to Mexico? After returning to the US permanently 18 years ago I can whole heartedly say not a chance.
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