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What we can learn from Mexico

What we can learn from Mexico | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it

Earlier this month, the president told a newspaper the solution to partisanship is politics and more politics.


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Most of what we hear coming out of Mexico is from the drug trafficking, violence and murders but behind the scenes Mexico has been quietly developing. We can see here how georaphy is playing a big part in Mexico's development, because they share a boarder with the US they are able to transport products much cheaper over the boarder. One of the most interesting facts in this piece is that Mexico has trade agreements with 44 countries.     

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Erica Tommarello's curator insight, September 24, 2013 10:21 PM

It is very impressive how far Mexico has come in what seems like such little time. I am very interested to see if there will be a great influx of American immigration into Mexico in the coming years. It is also interesting to think about NAFTA in this situation: so beneficial to Mexico; will this become a problem for the US? 

Marissa Roy's curator insight, October 23, 2013 12:46 PM

This article is particularly interesting. It is so common to hear about the drug wars going on in Mexico, but much less common to hear how the country is doing economically. It makes sense that their economy is growing, as the United States imports many goods and products from across the border. This goes hand in hand with how the Mexican government also pays their workers more than most Chinese workers recieve. Mostly it is their geographic location to the United States that is making their economy grow.

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 4, 12:22 PM

The future of Mexico is starting to look better and better as President Enrique Pena Nieto increases taxes, competition and takes on the teachers’ unions. With these reforms, Nieto is looking to build a better Mexico and succeed other surrounding countries.

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Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade

Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Bolivian and Peruvian farmers sell entire crop to meet rising western demand, sparking fears of malnutrition

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

In Argentina there is a proposed plan to build a tunnel that would be the longest tunnel in the Americas through the mountains. It would make billions of dollars worth of Chinese electronics, Chilean wine, Argentine food and Brazilian Cars cheaper and more competitive. It would save millions on shipping and safe time on shipping as well. The only pass through the Andes at the moment is in the south and gets buried in snow in the winter stranding shipments. If this is put into place many people believe that it cut travel time by a third.     

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Cam E's curator insight, February 11, 11:15 AM

The United States should really get back on board with trains. Pun intended. They were a marvel which practically created the west, and yet we abandoned them for air travel and the highway system while many other countries found ways to further develop their train systems for the utmost speed and affordability. With the new technologies behind engineering, we now have the capabilities to tunnel straight through large mountains and connect even the most inaccessible areas. Creating new opportunity for human expansion in places otherwise difficult to get to.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 17, 10:25 AM

This article expresses the need for better transportation in South America.  The need to bridge the Andes to better move trade goods from the pacific to Atlantic sides of the mountains.  This would have a huge effect on the economies of the two countries involved as well as an impact on international trade, just as the Panama Canal did when it was built.  The ability to cut through a mountain range and build a rail system is amazing and hopefully this vision of transportation can happen.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 28, 2:14 PM

The Andes mountains are causing serious issues for Argentina. Obviously these mountains didn't grow over night but they have been more of a problem in recent years that in past years. Shipping costs are sky rocketing and in order for this South American country to keep a hold on its finances, they need to figure out a solution for transportation. A tunnel under the Andes mountains might just be the solution to this problem.

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Belize: A Spanish Accent in an English-Speaking Country

Belize: A Spanish Accent in an English-Speaking Country | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it

"BELIZE has long been a country of immigrants. British timber-cutters imported African slaves in the 18th century, and in the 1840s Mexican Mayans fled a civil war."


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Because Belize was once a British colony english in the countries first language. That is quickly changing however with the immigaration of mexicans into Belize and Spanish is quickly taking over the lanuage. The country of Belize is no stranger to immigrants and they welcome them, even already seperating land in preperation. 

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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 6, 10:50 AM

This article was interesting as it shows that the problems faced in the United States due to immigration are not unique.  The friction between old and new immigration seems to be universal.  How different counties handle and adapt to the changing demographics of their people is challenging and shows the character of the population.  I was unaware of the makeup of Belize’s population or that they were an English speaking country.  This article told me a lot about the people of this country. 

Paige Therien's curator insight, February 11, 1:24 PM

Belize is surrounded by nations much less well-off than they are themselves, which makes them attractive for migrants.  This is greatly changing the cultural make-up of this resource-rich, coastal country.  Fortunately, the countries inhabitants are welcoming to the newcomers and ethnic differences are not seen negative.  However, the large influx of culturally different people are creating issues that the present working-generation has to deal with, especially land availability and job opportunities in an increasingly Spanish-speaking market.  If Belizeans can maintain their positive views of those different then them, they will hopefully adapt to these changes.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 28, 1:48 PM

Accents are a part of life. They can be developed over time for many reasons. Belize is a country full of immigrants and constant migration. Once upon a time, Belize may have spoken Spanish.Languages are developed every day within countries. Belize happens to be an English speaking country with a Spanish accent. No surprise there.

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In Venezuela Housing Crisis, Squatters Find 45-Story Walkup

In Venezuela Housing Crisis, Squatters Find 45-Story Walkup | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Bolivian and Peruvian farmers sell entire crop to meet rising western demand, sparking fears of malnutrition

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

This 45- story sky scraper was once supposed to be an office building, a way to show wealth. It was never finished an now is home to many of the squatters of Venezuela during their housing crisis. Because it was never finished the stairways are un light, the smell of sewage is every where and many people have walled off their terraces to prevent children from falling off.  

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Maegan Connor's curator insight, December 17, 2013 5:34 PM

The video we watched of the squatters living in an unfinished skyscraper was unlike anything I've ever seen before. In a country with such high population rates and a housing shortage, people have gotten creative and made homes in this 45 story building where they share what would have been office spaces and bathrooms.  Over 2,500 people have moved into the dilapidated skyscraper and made a home out of it for their families. They have rigged electricity that the government does not provide for them and built small stores on almost every floor.  The people have not been evicted because the government of Venezuela knows of the housing shortages, yet does not fix it.  

I feel ashamed that a country with so many oil resources has such high rates of poverty and no one is fixing it.  It shows the corruption in the government through an extreme although innovative example.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 17, 10:46 AM

The problems in Venezuela with housing and the lack of response to the problem by the government has led people to become squatters.  The using of the abandoned buildings was a good idea by the original squatters.  The vacant buildings can house many of the countries it is a shame that the government did not think of this solution to the housing problem and vacant building first, if they had, they could have made sure they were safer for the residence.  The idea of a vertical city springing up in this building is also an interesting one.  Not only are squatters living in these buildings but creating businesses and other services for the residence.

Jess Deady's curator insight, February 18, 1:02 PM

In life, I constantly find myself comparing situations with what I read and what I know. Imagine this skyscraper is the Prudential in Boston. How could something meant to be so great fall to its death (and to peoples literal deaths)? One day there is a massive financial building occupied with bankers and lavishness. The next day there is a skyscraper in the form of a house. Housing shortages are happening everywhere and Venezuela is being hit hard in this situation. Imagine visiting this country and asking where someone lives? "Oh, I live in the Tower of David, which used to mean a whole lot more."

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How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico

How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Wal-Mart de Mexico was an aggressive and creative corrupter, offering large payoffs to get what the law otherwise prohibited, an examination by The New York Times found.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Walmart bribed Mexico officals $52,000 to have the zoning maps redrawn before it was published in the newspapers. So when it was published it showed the allowed area drawen in for the building of the new walmart. The building created uproar from the people. They were upset from the congested traffic and created months of hunger strikes and sit ins that made Mexican media. 

 

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 12:36 PM

Some reactions that I had about this article were that the corporate Walmart took steps in order to enforce their way into the new making of a Walmart store in Mexico. Some things I would ask would be are what regualtions would the Mexican people know to follow in realation to the fact that Walmart had broken rules in order to expand their monopoly.

Paige Therien's curator insight, February 6, 3:33 PM

Wal-Mart is sometimes considered to be the embodiment of globalization.  Unfortunately, these things  come at the cost of not only the quality of life of many people, but also at the cost of these people's culture itself.  This is especially sad in Teotihuacon, where the tourism that is brought by the ruins helps support locals small businesses (their livelihood).  As the article states, and which has been seen wherever a Wal-mart pops up, these small, local business get shut-out quickly.  According to the evidence, it seems as though most of Wal-Mart de Mexico's stores were established through bribery.  With such a huge corporation showing such sure signs of corruption, what else in Mexico is made possible through bribery?

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 24, 4:58 PM

Walmart is a huge, huge, huge corporation. Does anyone really think they wouldn't bribe tons of Mexican cities to change their maps to put their stores into place? With Walmart's calculations of how well their stores would do in the Mexican societies, why not? Although Walmart's sly business is shameful and corruptive, is it so hard to believe they did this?

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Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple

Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it

Below street level in Mexico City, archaeologists have found a jumble of bones dating to the 1480s.

 

In the 1970s, construction workers unearthed numerous archaeological finds as the subway was being constructed.  The Mexican government decided to clear the several block of old colonial buildings to reveal the Templo Mayor, the ancient Aztec religious center.  Not coincidentally, the Spaniards built their religious center in the same place.  During the colonial era, the indigenous residents who spoke Spanish in Mexico City still referred to this portion of the city as la pirámide.  Today more finds such as this one are continuing to help us piece together the past of this immensely rich, multi-layered place filled with symbolic value. 

 

Tags: Mexico, LatinAmerica, historical, images, National Geographic, colonialism, place and culture.


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

This is so interesting! When you think about Mexico today we often think only about the drugs and wars and mass poverty that has consumed much of it. To think abou the true history of Meixco from the Aztecs that we are still unearthing today and learning from is amazing. Things like this helps us learn so much more about the past and tie things together. 

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Cam E's curator insight, February 4, 11:58 AM

This should remind us all that we're quite literally built on the sacrifices of our ancestors, no pun intended. Many of the ancient cities of the world lay right under the surface of their modern counterparts, and the secrets yet discovered which they contain is enough to spend lifetimes studying!

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 6, 10:42 AM

This article talks about not only the recent archeological find but the relevance of it.  Also included in this article are links to other relevant articles and a cool picture of the past superimposed over the modern day site.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 17, 4:09 PM

It is not uncommon to find bones underneath rubble and construction sites. To find this amount of ancient bones and bodies underneath that whole place is quite absurd. Now that this has been exposed and people are aware of it, government has cleared the block and revealed the temple.

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In Honduras, Police Accused Of Corruption, Killings

The Central American nation is the most violent country in the world, according to the United Nations. A mix of drug trafficking, political instability and history adds up to a murder rate that is now four times that of Mexico.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Honduras is the worlds most violent country. It has a mix of drug trafficking , it is politically unstable and has a murder rate that is four times that of Mexicos. The peace corp has even withdrawn its volunteers and contributors to the violence are the poilce. One of the problems with the police corruption is that Honduras is a big drug trafficking stop, the other problem is that the US funds the Honduras police force 50 million a year.  

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Albert Jordan's curator insight, February 4, 6:31 PM

Although this is dated approximately two years ago, the issue is still relevant. Honduras is geographically located in the middle of heavy drug trafficking routes. A poor economy and a history of political corruption, as well as a history of United States involvement in paramilitary training and aid has created a country that is not set up for stability. The issues in Honduras are very similar to the issues of many third world nations that deal heavily with drug trafficking and political corruption. Those in power, receiving aid from the U.S. use those assets against their political foes while the common people find themselves turning to illegal means to make a living. The police, being corrupt themselves since corruption is a trickle down disease, probably have a number of officers working for various gangs, cartels, and other nefarious groups. Because they can hide behind the authority of the “law,” they are able to use their force to further the agendas for whoever is putting money in their pocket. Whether it be for greed or unfortunate economic necessity, or out of fear of reprisal for not conforming it is the locals who suffer from the overwhelming police presence. These are issues that are found across the globe in countries and regions that have unstable politics that are fueled by conflict, whether it be resources, illicit substances, or other illegal trade.As the police pressure continues to mount, it is only a matter of time before serious reform takes place or violent revolution transforms the political landscape.

Paige Therien's curator insight, February 11, 1:36 PM

Honduras' role in the drug trafficking industry has increased immensely which does not mix well with their already corrupt government and police force.  However, a history of U.S. aid and security "support" is what rooted this country in violence.  Honduras' situation is spiraling out of control because the drug trafficking industry has taken advantage of its already weak state.

Amy Marques's curator insight, February 12, 10:55 PM

In the news we sometimes hear about violence taking place at the border of the US and Mexico, but you never hear of the violence in Honduras. With a mix of drug trafficking, corruption, political instability and history has led to a murder rate that is now four times that of Mexico., which is pretty hard to think of since there Mexico already has a high muder right. The situation has gotten so bad that the Peace Corps has withdrawn its volunteers.

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Latin American integration: Peaks and troughs

Latin American integration: Peaks and troughs | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it

The financial crisis surrounding the Euro has led many to feel that supranational organizations and regional coalitions are more trouble than they are worth.  The OAS (Organization of American States-which the USA is a part of) may dissolve and the CELAC might be its successor.  The CELAC's (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) emergence shows that the United States "is declining in a region it once called its 'backyard.'"  Spain is also diminishing in influence among its former colonies are forging new economic and political ties while Mexico and Brazil are exerting more regional influence. 


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

The United States influence is delining in an area it called "its back yard". Along the financial crisis causing this, it has also begun to declin Spains influence in there former colonies as well. I think this could be a good thing as far these areas finally getting out from under other countires control even though they have been free for so long. But it could be bad because know that they are doing things on their own what will they do   

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