According to the online site, Wicked Good Travel Tips,(http://www.wickedgoodtraveltips.com/2010/10/us-dollar-not-being accepted-in-mexico-vacation-spots/), the US dollar is no longer being accepted in popular Mexico vacation spots. The reason: the drug war which finds the cartels basically owning Mexico while the ‘selected’ Calderon government bleeds the country dry, both emotionally and economically, by continuing neo-liberal policies through acts of the Mexican state.
Although this is old news, reported on October 26th, 2010, it is newsworthy to repeat once again as the Calderon regime in Mexico continues to work with favorite drug cartels in its efforts to stabilize the drug trafficking situation and staunch the inner rivalry and violence. Meanwhile the military and national and local police ranks swell with cartel loyalists and teaming corruption.
According to the travel report online:
“For years, vacationers from the United States could count on using their US dollars in Mexico without doing a currency exchange – no more! In an effort to thwart drug-related money laundering, the Mexican government has put a cap on the amount of US dollars foreigners and businesses can trade for Pesos (Mexican currency). Since the new law went into effect last month, stores, restaurants, bars and other businesses can accept a maximum of $100 in US cash per transaction. Complicating things further, the maximum amount of US dollars that can be exchanged into pesos at a bank or exchange service has been limited to $1,500 per month.
Major vacation tour companies are warning that business may choose not to accept US dollars at all. Furthermore, airlines at Mexican airports are no longer accepting US cash for baggage and other fees. The Mexican tourism board recommends all travelers to Mexico should purchase pesos before they arrive to avoid confusion and inconvenience. The new laws do not affect credit or debit card transactions however or the amount of pesos than can be withdrawn from Mexican ATM machines” (ibid).
Mexico is proving to be a failed state and what may happen in the future is unclear. The suffering of the Mexican people, due in great part to the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA, is horrendous and accounts for much of the immigration into the United States as the Mexican people seek refuge from drug cartel violence and corrupt governmental collusion and control.
While the right wing in this country continues to refer to immigrants as ‘aliens’, the fact of the matter is they are refugees, both economic and social, and as so many Latin Americans have done, they seek escape from the violence and economic policies supported and funded by the United States and their puppet allies in the corridors of Mexican power. Speaking of those who flee as ‘refugees’ and not simply ‘undocumented workers’ or ‘illegal aliens or workers’ is key to reshaping the American understanding of the dire situation that is occurring in Mexico while at the same time building support and empathy for the Mexican people.