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Mexico’s Corruption Perception Index: How to Interpret It

Hi potential investors,

Thank you for reading this post. I appreciate that you take a few minutes to learn about Mexico and the never-ending opportunities to make money in the country.

I assure you that you will learn more by reading this blog than in an any “academic,” “scientific” or “serious” website. Make sure to read also our previous posts on how to take advantage of Mexican workers and our propensity to receive any criminal in our region.


Our heroes are a reflection of our souls. God bless Saint Cuahutémoc Blanco.

In this post, I’ll address three questions that investors asked me by e-mail. If you have more questions, do not hesitate to contact me through our Facebook profile.


1. Is corruption increasing or decreasing in Mexico?

Since 1693, corruption in the country has always been the same. Some years you have a little bit more (año de hidalgo) and some years you have a little bit less, but on average it has not changed a bit.


Mexicans, bribing authority since 1309. Except in Tijuana–those guys are different.

You have to remember that in Mexico the only official strategy is leaving everything to inertia: “let the waves of civilization drive us.” From year to year we really do not make anything different, we just wait for the world to do its stuff and then we import it.


The ninis: our national pride.

You also have to understand that we are professionals at (a) importing something—law, policy, strategy, product—from the outside, (b) failing miserably at implementing or using it, (c) blaming the person that had the idea of adopting the thing in the first place, and (d) going back to the previous state of things.

You can see this failure cycle in the energetic reform (“let’s go back to the 1930s”), the fiscal reform (“let’s keep the same people paying more taxes”), and the opposition to the education reform (“let’s go back to the 1640s”). This cycle also keeps Mexico from winning a world cup.


“Last year I was director of the Department of Economy… but I had an idea to change things a bit and I got expelled from society”

In summary, corruption, as well as everything else, is and will always be the same in Mexico. Although, you really have to know how to haggle in order to reduce bribes.


2. Should I be worried that Mexico is “doing all possible to fight corruption,” including a new anti-corruption law?

No. The reality is that corruption is something natural in the Mexican: we think like corrupt people, we act like corrupt people and we are corrupt people. Is there any incorruptible Mexican? No, we all have our weak points.

But let’s be clear: it is not always about money. For some Mexicans there is a phrase from ex-president Álvaro Obregón that is always true: “Nobody endures a cannonball of 50,000 pesos.” But for many others, accepting bribes is just wrong. Fortunately you have two more options:

First, you can use familiarity and friendship as an exchange coin. No Mexican is immune to the social pressure of refusing a favor to a “compadre” or a close friend. Even if nobody else knows, the feeling of guilt will consume that person and eventually will give up.


Compadre, my daughter will live with you, but defend her form those that will try to abuse her.
– Don’t worry compadre… she will be in
good hands–said while rubbing the girl’s shoulder
(Based on the true story of the 
nationalization of PEMEX)

Second, even worse than refusing a favor to a “compadre” is refusing it to your spouse, lover or “special friend.” Get romantically involved with the person you want to corrupt, someone close to him/her, or even his/her maid, and let the drama begin. In no time you will get anything you want. And if you doubt it, just watch the Mexican soap operas, all of which are based on true stories.


“What about that contract to supply the Department of Justice with overpriced toilet paper?”

So, don’t worry about any anti-corruption institutions or laws. There will always be a Mexican available to ease the process, lose the documentation, come up with new documentation, call some important friends, and make your investment worth billions of bloody pesos.


3. How should I interpret Mexico’s CPI?

You will read a lot of bullsh*t in Mexican newspapers and “intellectual” magazines saying stupid stuff like “Mexico is getting worse” and “Mexico have not keep up with its transparency compromises.” Pff, please. Mexico has never fulfilled any of its obligations. Ever. And never will. So, stop mourning already.

Mexico’s CPI has been and will always be the same. As I’ve described: Mexico does not change. But other countries do change. So, even when Mexico’s CPI is always around 34 points, its ranking has changed over time. Sometimes it’s at the middle of the ranking, sometimes it’s above the median (>50% of the ranking–meaning that Mexico is in the “corrupt half”) and sometimes it’s below it (<50%–part of the “non-corrupt half”). Click on the graph to open it in a new tab.

CPI cpi2

So, don’t worry about Mexico’s CPI or its ranking. Comparing Mexico to other countries is nothing else but a waste of time. Instead, open a history book and read about the Conquest of Mexico, the Independence, the Mexican Revolution and the creation of the PRI.


Protest against the privatization of the national oil company Pemex, December 1, 2013.

You will see that we have not changed a bit; that we still love “caudillos” and “mano dura” policies; that we will sell our traditions and nationalism for anything shiny—as long as our unions remain untouched; that our politicians and wealthy businessmen have total impunity; and that we are as corrupt as we have always been.


Yep, business in Mexico is very good

Invest in Mexico and you won’t regret it. Guaranteed!

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