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Old 11-08-2010, 11:56 AM   #31
MikeMike
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burrohas3wheels

Readers can take or leave my position.

Thanks, I'll leave it, you don't have a clue how things work in Mexico and it appears I can cross Chicago off the list, too.
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Old 11-14-2010, 01:54 PM   #32
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Below is a question I have asked 15 more Mexican Nationals this week and their replies are all the same. I have posted one actual email followed by their answer to my question.

Buenas Dias: I have a couple of questions concerning Mexican culture if you have the time. They involve paying traffic tickets to the police and the use of checks/money orders.



1. Do most people just pay the police when stopped or do they go to the police office to pay?

2. Do most people in Mexico write checks/money orders to pay bills or do they pay in cash?


Unfortunately that is the way to do the things in Mexico, police is corrupt and the people is very busy.

If you get a ticket from de police you have to go to their office to pay for it and it will take you almost half day, does not matter if it is much or little money, otherwise if you offer 50 or 100 pesos to the police the will lack slips by. Maybe you will spend a little less or more money but you donīt need to spend your precious time on it. I know itīs not the right way, sadly, is what people do. that is why Mexico is what it is.

About the other question, this is the order as people pay their bills, a 60% pay credit card, 30% cash 10% checks.

So...you can take the words of some gringos or that of a natioinal. Again it is up to you.
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Old 11-14-2010, 02:05 PM   #33
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Well, let's see, I can round up at least that many Mexican nationals that abhor the idea of paying a cop and won't do it.
What it means is that you are lamely trying to legitimize that you get off on the idea of police corruption in developing countries but won't tolerate it in your own country.
That's how you spell hypocrite.
Guess it helps you sell those DVD's.
Take half a day to pay a fine here? Not likely. But then again, you wouldn't know how long it takes to pay a fine because you never have paid one.
But you are an expert on that, too. LMAO
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Old 11-14-2010, 02:15 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by MikeMike
.
Take half a day to pay a fine here? Not likely. But then again, you wouldn't know how long it takes to pay a fine because you never have paid one.
But you are an expert on that, too. LMAO

Ouch!

Fair or not, around here supposedly the Guv'ner cleaned house of all the Reynosa Transitos a few years ago because they were pickin' on the gringos.

Now I hear that we go to the front of the line at the police station, with the poor officer being told "Why the hell did you bring him here??"

Seriously, I did get stopped by the Transitos last year and they did it by the book when they realized that they had stopped a middle-aged Norte Americano that didn't have drugs or weapons.

So if you aren't doing anything wrong (and as the folks have mentioned, if you did the crime then expect to pay the fine) then I wouldn't get too tense. Fines in Mexico for minor speeding and such are on the order of $20US; just consider it a tip towards the Policeman's Pension Fund, smile and go on.
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Old 11-14-2010, 03:05 PM   #35
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The one piece that Mister Burro got correct is that "fines" paid on the spot for actually breaking the law should be considerably less than US$20--he says 50 to 100 pesos, I say US$5. Don't pay more.
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Old 11-14-2010, 04:44 PM   #36
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My questions to Mexican Nationals have all been asked of freinds currently living in Mexico whom I have know personally for over 2 years. These are people who trust me not as a aquaintance but as a local and friend. Their responses have not been embelished by me.

The body of my thread is simply to express what I've encounter during my continuing travels within Mexico. Travelers need all the information they can get not somebodys righteous perception of the way things should be, but how they are.

Because there are varying opinions on this thread, Adventure Travelers to Mexico have a choice of which posts they choose to accept on this subject. It's all about gaining knowledge.
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Old 11-14-2010, 05:08 PM   #37
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Two years?
ROTFLMAO

I am done with you. Go back to telling stories about fighting corruption in the US and supporting it in Mexico.
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Old 11-14-2010, 06:49 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burrohas3wheels
My questions to Mexican Nationals have all been asked of freinds currently living in Mexico whom I have know personally for over 2 years. These are people who trust me not as a aquaintance but as a local and friend. Their responses have not been embelished by me.
Amigo ... Mexico is a big ... read "huge" country. And like the USA things change from state to state, and city to city.

And like it or not, fair or unfair, in many places there are at least two tiers of guv'mint. What applies to working class locals doesn't necessarily apply to travelers.

Case in point. I was hangin' with a guy who did some translations in ultra-tourist friendly Nuevo Progreso and he pointed out that he was happy to be with me because we could walk up and down the streets with a beer in our hands. If he - a local - did that the cops would bust him. But hangin' with me, he didn't have any worries.

Local folks have issues with the authorities that don't necessarily apply to tourists.

And tourists get special and inappropriate attention in some circles because the gendarmes think that we are stupid, don't know the laws, and have too much money.

So a little knowledge of the laws ($100 is ridiculous for a fine; $20 is more like it) coupled with a sense of humour goes a helluva long way.

MikeMike is right. Listen to him.
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Old 11-15-2010, 08:43 AM   #39
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Let me preface this post as meaning no disrespect to those who have paid off cops in the past. This is simply another perspective that I hope
and pray everyone will at least consider.

I am going to say it one more time. The problem with corruption is that it doesn't just end with the bribing of a police officer. It continues and continues. It is a chain of events. A lot of people simply think the officer pockets the money, they don't see the political machine behind it. Cops are appointed politically, same for DA's, same for any position of public servitude in Mexico. It is all through nepotism, corruption, etc...
So you are not just funding one officer, you are funding an entire political machine. Don't believe me? Go ask your 15 nationals again about how the system really works.

So yeah, I get a little PO'd when someone says it is okey dokey to just pay off a cop every time they shake you down. Why? Because I have been living here permanently approaching two decades and traveled here since 1978 when I was young and dumb, I have family here, I have a vested interest in seeing Mexico succeed against corruption and prosper as it should and offer some hope for a future for its young people instead of the cynicism and systematic corruption that is rampant.

No, I wasn't born in Mexico, but it is common sense that if you take off your shoes in your home you should not stomp through someone's place with your dirty boots. Remember that Mexicans fight corruption all the time.

If you really want to sell a DVD and give advice about Mexico you should think about including how NOT TO PAY corruption. That is to say "What you have to do if you have not broken a law and are unfairly targeted."
If you have broken a law then it is case closed. Instead of flashing money, show some respect and class and own up to your actions as you would in the USA.

Nobody ever explains how NOT TO PAY, it just isn't as glamorous as giving someone the "inside advice" on how to deal with those evil federales and transito cops.

Anybody can bribe a cop, but too few have the know how to not pay and take it to another level out of standing up for their principles. So how do you do it? You simply say "no", you don't offer a single centavo, and you hold your ground. They'll either capitulate or take you in. Guess what?
In all my time I have never been taken in. Not once. It's not called a "Mexican Standoff" for nothing. Sure they will try to bully you and BS you with all kinds of shinanigans, but if you remain firm they will capitulate and let you go with a "warning" which you will "respectfully" acknowledge because you depart leaving them having saved face which is the single most important feature in a macho partriarchial culture in Mexico. You shake their hand and you can wash it later without embarassing them.
That is how the dance goes.

It is easier for them to simply go looking for one of the "15 nationals" that will eagerly pay and be victimized. They'll find them or one of the people that have bought into the bribery "advice". It is easy to find another sucker that can be bullied and cajoled into paying up.

If this sounds too much like a rant, sorry for that. But I really encourage ADV riders to say "no" respectfully or pay the fine if it is valid. It won't sell someone's DVD but it will make the world a better place for the next rider coming through.

The sign reads "Please don't feed corruption" with emphasis on the "please".

Make a difference by passing on advice as to how not to pay, that is what is going to sell your DVD's.

MikeMike screwed with this post 11-15-2010 at 08:52 AM
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Old 11-15-2010, 09:10 AM   #40
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Good points.

Get a receipt. If it's a shakedown they won't give you a receipt.

Suggest that we all go to the police station to pay the fine in front of a supervisor. If you do that, then the ossifer doesn't get any of the money and it goes directly into the town coffers.

Write down the cop's name (in most places they have name tags).

Etc.
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Old 11-15-2010, 10:03 AM   #41
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VERY WELL STATED MikeMike.

I had hoped this thread would discuss simple realities. Yes I've paid and No I haven't paid.

By the way, my DVDs have never address the subject as of yet. This is because I had never previously come across the problem until the last few years in Mexico.

I want to thank you for your perspective and will include the pro's and con's when the new film "Mexican Highways" is finalized early next year.

http://burrohas3wheels.com
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:00 AM   #42
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Now we're communicating on a whole different level. I can sincerely say thank you for considering to include the other side of the coin. Trust me, very little info exists on now not to pay in comparison to how to pay, you are doing your perspective viewers a favor here and that will help them.
After all is said and done, it all comes down to helping others in one way or another.

To get back to the original idea of this thread "Is Mexico Dangerous", I just read that 7 people were killed yesterday in a gas explosion at an upscale PDC resort on the Riviera Maya.
Build up of gas in the kitchen area led to the explosion. Yes, there is a total lack of safety in many installations in Mexico because negligence litigation is practically unheard of and next to impossible to win here. Balconies in Mexican hotels are particularly noteworthy for problems, same goes for the lack of smoke detectors etc...

The single biggest problem is the almost total lack of a physical ground in electrical installations coupled with an electrical "code" that hasn't been updated since Tesla first got a shock. You might want to also include some info on that for your viewers because staying in hotels will also be part of their journey and they likely won't be the finest ones in town. The infamous ungrounded electric water heater that mounts on the shower head is a classic example made even more interesting when the plug is located next to the soap holder. If you've ever seen one of these, you'll know what I mean. If you haven't seen one, you will recognize it as soon as you do! I often wondered why they never offered one on a bidet. :(0)

MikeMike screwed with this post 11-15-2010 at 11:08 AM
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:37 AM   #43
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MikeMike is correct about the best way to handle shakedowns....except that it's not true that no one ever posts about how to avoid paying. I've done it myself repeatedly, here and elsewhere, and so have others. Anyone who cares can find what others have done and work out their own approach.

The problem is that most people don't care. Some actually like to puff themselves up by bragging about paying bribes (like one recent poster whose bucket list apparently included paying a bribe, and got so excited when he managed to check this off the list that he posted at length about it). The fact that I personally view this as pathetic doesn't alter the fact that people continue to do it.

Keep fighting the good fight!

Mark
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Old 11-15-2010, 04:03 PM   #44
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First stop by the cops in TJ. I had a blazer with expired STICKER on the plate, but the reg was up to date. The person i bought it from had told me the sticker would be mailed, which i later learned was not true, and that he just most likely lost the sticker, BUT, the reg WAS paid and current. I was stopped for not having a current sticker on the plate in TJ. We argued back and forth about the registration being current, but that yes, i was missing the sticker. SO i looked him right in the eyes and said, "Fine, you wait right here, i'm going to go look on another car for a sticker and put it on mine so you'll shut up and leave me alone." a few minutes later he was gone, no "fine" no bribe.

2nd - I got stopped for riding my motorcycle in TJ without blinkers. I had just come back from a track day. He asked me, i splained it, and he said, ok, the fine is 20$. I said, I don't have any money. he said, if you don't pay the "fine" you'll have to come to the station with me, I said, OK, let's go. he said he'll let me off with just a warning this time. I said, that's what i thought. No fine, No bribe.

3rd - In my cargo van, there's only two seats, I was not driving and was sitting on a 5gal bucket in the back, which is why we got pulled over. Cop said, you need to have seat belts on, I said hold on, grabbed the bag of tie downs and started making a seat belt. he said, if you did that to the cops in the US wouldn't you get in trouble, I said yeah, but we're not in the US. No fine, no bribe.

4th - in a friends lincoln coming from Adelitas: Windows were tinted post factory and that's why we were pulled over. Cop says, windows are tinted, friend says, yeah, they're from the factory that way. He said, what about the spot where a cell phone antennae used to be (where there was not tinting.)
Friend said, oh i don't know about that.
Cop said something like, how much do you pay down here.
I don't pay anything.
Nothing?
NO, nothing.
ok have a good night.
No fine no bribe

5th - I pulled a bean move and turned left from the right lane of 4 at a red light. Got pulled over, and cop said why he pulled me over,
I said, yeah, i know,
he says, ok that'll be..... mmmmm 20$.
I said, ok, I don't have any money.
nothing?
no.
ok, i'll let you off with a warning.
That's what i thought.
no fine, no bribe.

6th - pulled over on the R1 for being white. wasn't a cop, was in plain clothes, so for all i know could have been a jacker. he's asking me about the reg and my license, I said, it's at my house around the corner, why don't you follow me there, and i'll show you. he said nothanks, that wont be necessary. and as i'm starting the bike back up, I'm telling him, don't ever fuckin pull me over again for no reason F'in piece of shit. no fine, no bribe.

7th - pulled over for brake light being out.
He said, the fine is usually 500 pesos, but do you want me to help you?
I said, yeah, give me a screwdriver so i can fix my light.
he said, no i don't think you understand, do you want me to give you a lesser fine.
I said, no, i want you to give me a screwdriver so i can fix my light.
he said, how about you give me 200 pesos and we'll just forget about this. since i had alot of toys and such strapped to the bike, I didn't feel like dealing with it. I gave him 200 pesos, said, have a bean taco for me, and took off.

six years, plenty of chances to get F'ed with by the cops, and only 200 pesos out. i don't pay these F'ers unless the risk isn't worth the reward.

OH, just remembered. went to jail for kidnapping and minor prostitution. and because the girl, who ran away from home because her dad was beating her and stealing her money, wouldn't roll on us, they beat her, and let us go less than the standard 48 hours later.

And the bleeding heart liberals wonder why we're so dead set against letting these poeople into our country. They just don't get the different in socio-economics and how it IS affecting our country.

Whatever, i've lived in TJ for six years, and i'm used to the BS.

Don't let these pieces of shit push you around. if you know you've done nothing wrong, tell them you've done nothing wrong, and say, are we done here??? have a good day. When they see you're not going to roll over, they'll usually let you go and look for the weaker gazelle.
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Old 11-15-2010, 04:32 PM   #45
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Most Hispanic immigrants I meet in the States--legal or illegal--work harder and are more trustworthy than a great many of my born-American acquaintances. But maybe that's just me.

Plus, you should've counteroffered 20 pesos on #7, then settled for 50 or maybe 75.

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