Last updateFri, 29 Apr 2016 3pm

Confederate war ended as armies were beaten, railways smashed, cities burned, crops destroyed, desertions grew

The disagreement, debate, argument and name-calling regarding the continued public display of the Confederate Flag on government properties – and widely accepted lies about the Confederacy – continues (with a heavy load of irony) today.  This in the wake of killings of nine parishioners at South Carolina’s  Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church June 17.  South Carolina was the first state to secede from the United States on December 20, 1860.  And continues to be the most recalcitrant.

Long ago echoes of an instructive,  harsh campesino father’s day, one that saved an opportunist’s life

We lay well up on a rising slope, chins on our crossed arms.  It was Father’s Day in the United Sates that morning.  But at that time in Mexico nobody paid that any attention.  Fathers didn’t seem to count.  “You see anything?” my companion said.   A hawk soared high on still wings noting us as he scanned the mountainside.  I nodded at the bird.  “There’s nothing to see.” 

Daring alchemists: thunderous funerals, soaring castles aflame with burning proverbs

The stuttery rains that have blown over the Cerrro de Santa Cruz some distance south of Guadalajara have been disappointing thus far (May 28). But campesinos there were so eager for the temporada de lluvias to begin, in any kind of way, that they celebrated extravagantly with a barrage of booking cohetes (skyrockets), a few pistol shots and not a little aguardiente — literally, firewater.

Corruption: Not ‘a cultural phenomenon’ as the chief executive once called it; instead it is death hidden in mass graves

For much of his life, President Enrique Peña Nieto dismissed Mexico’s destructive blight, corruption, as “a  cultural phenomenon.”   An unfortunate one, but so commonplace that Mexican business people – those citizens that evidently count – are blasé about it.  The less well-off tend to be angry about having to silently endure being robbed.