We´re sorry, but we have to go. Thanks for your questions and comments. Read our book, please! http://www.orbooks.com/catalog/narco-history/

Comments: 111 • Responses: 23  • Date: 

Mike__Wallace15 karma

Just to get the ball rolling, we here post a question to ourself that's often been asked us: why do you say the us had a hand in creating the mexican drug war? isnt it, like the name says, 'mexican'? really an internal affair?

carmenboullosa7 karma

That´s the question we asked us - it came with the theme

quetalbrother13 karma

The drug war in Mexico has been a calamity in terms of the death and corruption it has sewn, and as you rightly say has been driven in part by US policy. Why doesn't Mexico legalise drugs and end the war, washing their hands of the matter and leaving the U.S. to deal with it?

carmenboullosa7 karma

good point. we go over it in the book - mexico has tried repeatedly, in former times. no effort now, it seems. Javier Sicilia - poet and activist- suggested it directly to (ex)President Calderón. Should have been that way, yes, and should be that way today. But the story´s now more twisted.

suvrankar9 karma

Hi Carmen, I have a few questions... So would love if you could answer them...

Well... I don't live in Mexico... Nor America... But how easy is it to become a drug Lord in Mexico? Have you ever given a thought why people become involved in this nasty business? Why wouldn't they choose something else? Isn't the Mexican government's economical n financial policies responsible for the people joining the drug cartels.... Wouldn't they choose some other profession if they AT All Had the option? Or is it real good pay... Considering the risks? I do believe sometimes people are forced into these... Might be family business... But how is it expanding.... Why do younger people join this business?

carmenboullosa6 karma

You´re totally right. Why choose such a nasty profession, if you had the training and the possibility to choose another? Why put your family in risk, daily? Why have lunch and breakfast and dinner in a pool of blood and pain? Is not a "family" business but a complete irresponsibility from the State. No education, no doors open...

noel-137 karma

What do you think of the whole Trump fiasco?

carmenboullosa8 karma

I thought to myself "this is not the first time i have the same feeling, as Mexican living in NYC"

Book87 karma

Where does all the profits from drugs end up. We are talking billions.

How can the Cartels manage this huge amount of cash without "cooperation." from legit institutions.

It seems to me that drugs are in every single town /city in the US. How does anyone move this quantity of drugs?

carmenboullosa8 karma

Good question. Yes, we are talking billions - and is not only the bulky "profits" but what "wets" on its way "home", corrupting officials at all levels. We know what it has done in Mexico. I wonder what it´s done corruption-wise in the States. South the border, the war spills blood, destroys lives and communities, and ALSO brings back home some billions. But north the border is your point. Mike?

mary_watson6 karma

Do you think the current shifting legal status of marijuana in the US is changing the public outlook of the war in Mexico?

carmenboullosa6 karma

Not sure. The "public outlook" is not focused on the Mexican tragedy.

carmenboullosa4 karma

Could it be, Mike, that really "nobody cares" about the "Mexican" drug-war? More than two thousand heads have been chopped south the Río Bravo, the USA is also cocreator of this nightmare, and nobody here has raised this question. How can you explain this?

malum_prohibitum4 karma

Carmen, perhaps you're being a little too sanctimonious. This question, posed publicly to Mike, comes off pretty passive aggressive. Just because "nobody HERE has raised the question" does not mean "nobody cares."

You introduce yourself as "acclaimed" so perhaps it is just your condescension that has limited the responses and attention you are fighting for. And I don't say attention in the sense that I believe you are searching for personal attention but attention to the issue of violence as a result of horribly selfish and self defeating anti drug laws in the USA. I want what you want: an end to a disastrous "war" that has done so much more harm than any drugs ever could. But maybe you'll catch a few more flies with honey than with self righteous vinegar.

When people are too caught up in the personalities and credit, we often miss a chance to make a real difference in our world.

carmenboullosa2 karma

I feel as uncomfortable as you do with the word "acclaimed" - it was written by the p.r. people and we should have rewritten it. We regret the implications you correctly point to on the use of "nobody here", etc. Thank you for your intervention.

dudenotcool0 karma

Rio Grande... Just saying

carmenboullosa1 karma

"Grande" it was. Not now, I think we should all move forward to "Bravo" - tough, for tough is our border.

lula24884 karma

What is something you have done that most people will never experience?

carmenboullosa4 karma

I'm a poet. I am convinced almost all my experiences are totally different from others'.

queen_in_my_pictures4 karma

Wait, totally different from other people or from other experiences you've experienced?

carmenboullosa5 karma

Totally different: that is the point. That is what I think is a main "goal" in poetry - in real poetry: to convey how different we are. I spent my childhood feeling I was something like a Martian. Now I know it is not I am a Martian, but that I´m a person. But the Era we live at tries to convince us we are all the same, disposable, replaceable, and that we must go fish for a "unique" experience. Now, the trick is to be aware of the "miracles" - the unusual. And the problem's that when collective tragedies hit, individuals fall in slumber. Collective tragedies can be from what we call "normality" if it´s in reality an ethical tragedy, to a war, or extreme poverty, or etc etc.

neuronalapoptosis3 karma

Some poets take a completely different stance. Not saying your view isn't beautiful, just saying that there's lots of poetry that comes in from the idea "we are all alike." Metaphor is often used to convey a feeling that is better expressed in the abstract, because language is an imperfect medium. So, many poets believe that by being less precise, you can be more communicative, because we are all the same. Or at least many of us are the same.

That being said, Where can we find your poetry?

carmenboullosa1 karma

And also it is true we are all alike. Mostly it is true that placing a label is not a wise move. Though it is always a temptation. I´ve published in Spanish most of my poetry - the American Poetry Review published one on translation: https://www.aprweb.org/issue-index/2013-january-february, and http://www.carmenboullosa.net/en/works/poems.html

kihadat3 karma

Is there such a thing as "winning the war" On drugs? What would it take to do that? What would that look like?

carmenboullosa5 karma

The notion itself is ridiculous in fact. There´s no way to "win" this "war". But maybe it´s been won already, and some of the winners are racism (in the USA), and anti/democracy, violence, inequality, and also racism in Mexico - plus the weapons industry. There are more winners: money that pays no taxes, money Every day I drink my glass of wine (red), I remember it used to be illegal, there use to be a war against alcohol, how absurd...

Rihannas_forehead2 karma

Why have the U.S. and Mexican governments sided with the Sinaloa organization against the other cartels? Giving the impression to many Mexicans that the governments work hand in hand with Sinaloa cartel.

carmenboullosa2 karma

Mike is answering too: as him, I´m not sure this is the case. There is not ONE head that could be backed up - it´s a multi-operation that has spread and broke into severals. Hand in hand no longer exists. Not even between "governments" -

MsNewKicks2 karma

A good friend of mine is from Mexico and she mentioned how the cartels are huge down there with killings and beheadings which have gotten worse when the government has cracked down on cartels. She also mentioned the Mexican cartels have "cells" here in the US. Are you aware of any truth to this?

carmenboullosa2 karma

Our book tells the story. Killings, beheadings... and crime. The "illegality" has grown under the umbrella of the illegal drug-trade. Organizations are multiple. Also "des-organized" crime exists - it includes criminals who profit from a "franchise" they don´t belong to- some pretend to belong to the Zetas or La Familia, just to terrify. North the border the criminals move differently. The most obvious difference is on violence.

MusicOfWolves1 karma

How could the Mexian drug war affect the rest of the world? (Not just the Americas)? What accomplishment are you most proud of? What's your favorite ice cream flavor?

carmenboullosa2 karma

Mike will be real, I´ll speak utopia: If Mexico could stop being the pathway and producer for "illegal" substances, then another region would take over - imagine any strategic place in other continent - we can´t say Cuba, it´s part of the Americas. Is not "Mexican" drug war that affects -or inflicts- punishments to the rest of the world, but the USA ways to impose the rule of prohibition. - TWO: most proud of, my novels, my poems, and co-working in this book with my husband. You don´t ask, but I´ll say: most happy: writing, reading, family, cooking, eating, etc. THREE: Favorite ice cream flavor: one I´m dreaming to make myself this afternoon: crushed peacans and almonds, real Mexican "rancho" cream, a sip of a dry pepper, of course evil sugar, and a bit of dark rum.

RancorHi51 karma

What would you say to the idiot kids in my town who like to "party" with coke to make them realize that thier favorite drug comes from a place of intense human suffering?

carmenboullosa2 karma

Coke is only produced south of Mexico. The drug travels long - it´s processed in Mexico, and split up into small quantities in the States. Crack is another thing. But in any case, the drug-policy makers are responsible for the suffering, nor the growers of coke leaves or avocados, nor the sniffers. I think. Mike might think differently

felicity_74981 karma

What is one thing that you hope will never change?

carmenboullosa2 karma

I don´t know. I prefer the sky up and us down, but when I have had the feeling I´m up and it´s under my feet, it´s not been bad... All changes are welcomed. I just want us not to forget language - any, me mine (Spanish).

Doctor_Grass1 karma

Why is the U.S. So slow to change its drug laws?

carmenboullosa1 karma

Why Mexico is so slow? Mexico's cleaning somebody elses patio

danyboy4341 karma

Why do so many Americans (especially the right) love to blame (and even abuse) us (Mexicans) for the illegal drug industry? Also, @Carmen, where can we read your poetry?

carmenboullosa1 karma

Call it racism. There is no other way to name it. -- AS for my poetry: I´ve published several volumes of poems at Fondo de Cultura Económica (Mexico, in Spanish) and the last two ones at Hiperión (Madrid, in Spanish too). Here you have one long poem in English: https://www.aprweb.org/issue-index/2013-january-february

H_Anslinger1 karma

Is the U.S. making money off the drug wars, or is this really the product of a (misguided) moral crusade?

carmenboullosa1 karma

Mike will answer with more detail. I would say: money and racism.

Rihannas_forehead0 karma

Thank you for taking the time to answer questions. Very important to tell this tragic story of the effects of drug prohibition. What's the outlook for Mexico in the next decade, are we waking up from this nightmare anytime soon? Also mole poblano or mole oaxaqueño, which is best?

carmenboullosa2 karma

I hope we can see a change soon - another decade like the last we´ve been through seems intolerable. More than a 100 thousand corpses, plus 30 thou disappeared... No, can´t wait a decade. -- As for which mole I prefer: today, the pipián - the green mole (only because it´s waiting for us in the stove). There are so many varieties of mole from both places you name. The best I´ve had in months was two days ago - a gift. Nor Oaxaca, nor Puebla, but from Lupe's mother, in Estado de Mexico. Oh, my, was dark, almost black, I could have sworn it was from Oaxaca, but had another kick...

bug_the_bug0 karma

Do you think the U.S. policy on foreign resource (food crops, oil, industrial) development has added any fuel to the fire? Would Mexico or Central America have participated with the drug trade on this scale if they hadn't seen large injections of soldiers/migrant workers flowing in to protect and develop their natural resources?

carmenboullosa0 karma

If not fuel to the fire, it has enabled traffic. The fuel has been spread both sided - Mexican policies count too. It is a complicated story, we try to tell it with no rush in the book - not too long, but not simplifying it. As for the second part of your question, there are several moments that we point into in the book - the Iran-Contra, for example, the not to spoken Mexican Condor Operation - linked to the root of the Ayotzinapa recent murders, etc etc