Due to Trump’s Recent Remarks…

Due to the recent derogatory statements made by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, specifically Mexicans; Tacos and Politics’ staff (myself and my mate who proofreads the posts before I publish them), its board members and collaborators (still my mate and I), is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.

We are addressing either him or his hair...

We are addressing either him or his hair…

We deeply regret these racist and inappropriate remarks, which not only offend the Mexican community in Mexico, but those who have crossed the border pursuing the American Dream (which nowadays is known as the Canadian Dream, but hey, still neighbours, right?).

Pretty much the routes Mexicans take to get into the US

Pretty much the routes Mexicans take to get into the US

Even though we are a tier 3 online media outlet, not at all relevant to the American public, nor capable of reverting the effects of Global Warming, Tacos and Politics has decided to halt any current or future endeavors with Mr Trump (Take that, Trump!)

Or his hair...

Or his hair…

We deeply condemn those who applaud and agree with Donald’s expressions full of hatred. You are supporting a hateful and narcissistic individual without any kind of values, both personal and business wise. As well, by supporting Trump’s presidential aspirations you are also supporting a growing trend of bigotry and division in the US and A.

Love

T&P Staff

Ps. If you haven’t watched or heard what he recently said, please feel free click on the following youtube clip:

Ps2. Here, have a Trump Piñata, which are becoming very popular on this side of the border.

You know you want one...

You know you want one…

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What´s New: Ferguson, Missouri; and Kent Brantly

It is Monday and among the many things that happened last week there were some news more interesting than others, or more viral, however some things happened less known to the public but extremely relevant to all of us.

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Racial tension

Two weeks ago, in Ferguson, Missouri, a white police officer shot and killed an unarmed black young man, it has been the sixth consecutive day without any public protest or the presence of heavy armed forces. The murder of Michael Brown (18 years old) by (apparently) police officer Darren Wilson, has brought public opinion to question the use of plenty of police force to intimidate the protesters.

Analysts, media and key opinion leaders suggested that the police´s response was unusual and unnecessary, and many questioned the fact that Ferguson, Missouri looked more like a scene you´d see in Afghanistan or Iraq, because, let´s face it, the cops did look like freaking soldiers. According to this article by Reuters on the matter, “President Barack Obama has ordered a review of the distribution of military hardware to state and local police, a senior administration official said on Saturday”.

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What happened in Ferguson reminded the national and international community that the United States still has a lot of issues in terms of racial discrimination and, now, the implementation of a new legislation by the local police to re use military equipment given by the government to strengthen their local forces: “How Ferguson could be America’s future

An Update on the Ebola Virus in Murica

Remember that the US received a couple patients diagnosed with the Ebola virus, the were flown from Africa in order to be treated and cured in American soil. Well, Dr. Kent Brantly, one of these two infected, was finally released from the hospital where he was receiving treatment, and he seems OK. According to the doctors who treated him (and Nancy Writebol, the other American infected by Ebola) he represents no public health threat.

Well, and the lad made it

Well, and the lad made it

However, according to the World Health Organization, at least 1,350 people have died in Africa since the Ebola outbreak in March. And, according to their latest research, the Ebola virus could live up to 3 months in vaginal fluid and semen.

In other news

The viral campaign: the Ice Bucket Challenge  is known to create awareness and get donations from the general public for research on ASL. It was a huge success, at least now people around the world, no just within the US, know what Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is, often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease. If you want to know more about the disease and how to donate to fight it, go to the ALS Association website and find out.

Enjoy watching Charlie Sheen doing it the right way:

 

My Favourite Salsa

When I was learning how to cook, back in 2004, I was in France as a Mexican Exchange student, and after four months I started  craving some Mexican food. My cooking knowledge wasn´t great but I knew how to mix some ingredients and just went for it.

Because, you  know, even after a couple of hours away from the country Mexicans start to crave salsa and tamales

Because, you know, even after a couple of hours away from the country Mexicans start to crave salsa and tamales

So I bought fresh tomatoes, onions and some “Indian” Chilies, you know, France. I came back to the dorms and started cooking, suddenly I realized I´ve made something that slightly resembled Mexican food, I was so excited I literally ran down the hall with a spoon full of that salsa just to give everybody a wee try. I know, not really that hygienic, but I was thrilled I´ve made something edible.

My first salsa is super easy to make, and it will not disappoint:

 

Ingredients:choppedonions

  • 1 big ass onion
  • 3 fresh tomatoes
  • 3 chilies (serranos, or Indian chilies will do)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 spoons of canola oil

 

First, heat a medium size pot, pour the oil, and place inside the onion, sliced, let it cook. You will notice that the onion will sizzle and then start to caramelize, don´t add any salt yet. Then put in the chopped chilies and chopped garlic, let them integrate with the onions, open your windows if you are not used to this type of cooking, as the smell will make you cough and sneeze, true story.

SerranosRipe Tomatoes on White with Clipping Path

When you notice that everything is well cooked, add the tomatoes, diced; the juices of the tomatoes will put all the flavours together. Finally, add salt and pepper to taste, and half a cup of water. Let it simmer, the salsa isn´t supposed to be runny, you want it thick and with a curry-ish like texture.

I used to put this salsa on nachos or cous-cous, goes amazing with grilled fish and pork, aye, lots of pork.

Ps.  Non related to this culinary post, I do highly recommend this recent article posted on The Economist, titled: “The Feds Ride Out”, which talks about the Mexican government launching this new police force rather than improving the current crime-fighting forces. As said by some analysts, president Enrique Pena Nieto, seems to lack a national security strategy and keeps on denial that Mexico is under control of criminal forces.

http://www.economist.com/news/americas/21613312-mexico-gets-new-police-force-it-needs-new-policing-strategy-feds-ride-out

Credit to: Peter Schrank

 

What´s New: Ebola, Love at first sight, and Bear rescue

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I thought it would be nice to have a weekly post of “What the heck is happening around the world today”, or like twitter calls it “What´s trending”. Usually I find this sort of news on my friends´timeline in Twitter and Facebook (No, no matter how much you insist mate, no one uses Google Plus, knock it off), some of the posts are amusing, other interesting and other just ridiculous.

"Oh no, Miley, don´t do it!"

“Oh no, Miley, don´t do it!”

 

 

Today I found these jewels trending the heck up of our social media outlets

 

 

 

 

The Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone and Liberia, spreading to Guinea, at least three cases reported in Nigeria, and three people with the virus being treated in the US. This is something to think about as we´ve been bombed with apocalyptic movies throughout the last 10 years, from virus, to zombies, to world´s destruction by aliens, earthquakes or solar flames. This virus went from 800 people sick last week to over 1500 reported on Wednesday and the numbers keep rising.

Ebola-story

As reported by Reuters, and now being a well known fact, the “Symptoms initially include muscle pains and joint aches, then worsen to vomiting, diarrhea and internal and external bleeding in the final stages.” So, pretty much the way you feel after eating real Mexican Food for the first time.

The conflict in the Middle-East, particularly the recent and ongoing attacks of Israel over the Palestinian settlements has brought some new actors into the international arena. Israel, perceived as being backed up by the United States and the European Community, continues to discourage opinions that question its military action on the region. It has helped that the media has shown lack of empathy for Israel´s military actions, and China as well as Brazil seize the option of becoming heavier actors in the topic.

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The chronology of a desperate social media campaign launched by an Irish lad in order to find a Canadian girl he met on a plane from Dublin to Dubai. As the Time article says, this could be the creepiest or most romantic story lurking on the web at the moment. Well, apparently they are in communication now so, let see how it develops… or not.

Aye, this happened

Aye, this happened

Uh uh… did you guys watch this video of a bear rescuing a crow that fell into a pond? It was everywhere at the beginning of the week. Seems that people are more interested in finding hope in animal actions than in human beings.

Mexican Censorship Reform

Hey lads out there, haven´t you noticed that the Telecommunications Initiative presented by the Mexican President, Enrique Pena Nieto, to the Senate last week, clearly violates freedom of speech and access to information?:

“A particularly undesirable aspect of the document is an attempt to establish a mechanism for discretionary censorship of social media through the possibility that the authorities could order Internet providers to suspend service “during events and at critical locations for reasons of public and national security”, which opens prospects of authoritarian control and opaqueness for ends incompatible with any democratic purpose.” La Jornada

Because screw you, that´s why

This pretty much means that if any authority (still isn´t clear which one) determines that something posted on the web affects national security or there´s a relevant event happening, well, the internet or certain websites shall be banned/blocked. And by relevant events let´s say that a massive protest “Venezuela Style” happens, the authorities could just demand the internet providers to shut down broadband signal.

Good old fashion authoritarianism, ladies and gens!

And just like countries as North Korea, Syria, Egypt, Iran, and even Venezuela, the Mexican authorities are moving into the path of blocking telecommunications and censoring the internet under the argument of national security.

Literally, if there´s a relevant event that the government wouldn´t like outsiders to find out, well, blocking any way of communication seems appropriate.

This will stop real time broadcasting of human right abuses preformed by the authorities in case of a public display of discomfort by the Mexican citizens, this according to the article 197 of the Telecommunications Secondary Law Initiative presented by Pena Nieto last week.

And under the argument of regulating the wealthy, the rest must settle for nothing but censorship

Let´s go further, not only human rights violations or relevant events to the public would be blocked from the rest of the country, also in the next presidential elections this seems very beneficial for the State Party candidate. Even if the other candidates are having a successful campaign, if the government decides which information threatens national security, maybe its opponents also pose a threat to the state´s national security.

No Sex in the Champagne Room

Wait a second, is it March already? Where the bullocks did this year go? Anyway, so I´m on the hunt for a new place now and I´m quite excited about this. Let´s put it this way, there are many plans ahead and the rest of this year is going to be bloody awesome. Well, except for the fact that Ukraine is in a terrible political turmoil, Venezuela is experiencing an awful social revolution, the Mexican government intends to pass a law that will allow the authorities to block telecommunications in case of national security issues (aye, just like Egypt, Iran, or Syria), and somebody vomited on Lady Gaga for … let´s put it this way: art.

They say it looked a lot like this…

So, one quarter of the year gone already? And what have we learnt so far?

1.- Street food is an awesome sin

This is one my favourite “sports” since I moved to Mexico City, street food here is freaking glorious and without hesitation the best meals I ever had here were on the run.

From pambazos, to “tacos de canasta”, pork crackling quesadillas, or just corn in a cup (no girls); this city is the bomb when it comes to urban/informal gastronomy.

 

2.- It´s ok to protect human rights in other countries except yours

I´m talking to you “Murica”, don´t think we haven´t noticed the amount of people lined up for execution in your penitentiary centres. That´s right, there are several inmates that are there waiting for their lives to be “Terminated” by the American government without a proper trial. If you want to find out more, go to the Death Penalty Information Centre website, and see “who´s next”.

3.- Christmas decorations are fine on February but not March

I´m not going to go deeper on this subject, you know who you are, and no, it is not “ok” to leave them all the way until August and then say “well, Christmas is just around the corner, why bother”. Get those bloody cardboard boxes and put those obnoxious holiday annoyances away!

Neither saying “happy new year” after the second week of January.

4.- No matter what the stripper says, there´s no sex in the champagne room. 

Amazingly explained by Chris Rock on this great 90s hit:

Ps. Remember mates, learn the difference between positivism and optimism, they are not the same, and no, reading Paulo Coehlo isn´t cool either.

Ps2. Speaking of optimism, tend to hang out with happy and optimist fellas, learn from their ability to see the good things in life. Usually these people are empathetic, caring, good listeners and they share their happiness with those around them.

#100HappyDays

I know what you are thinking, “Really? Are you honestly going to follow one of these obnoxious trends on the internet? Are you willing to keep track of 100 happy moments in your life for 100 days?”…

Seriously, I know this is weird, but when a friend told me she was doing this I got sort of excited about it; not because she is doing it, but the fact that she presents herself to others as a bitter-grinchy-realistic person. Although we all know she is a freaking cotton ball, nice and with a kind heart, however, the fact that she was into it, looking for that happy moment of her day for a 100 days, got my attention.

As explained on the website: http://100happydays.com/ this activity is simple, you just go looking for that happy moment every day, post it online, either using Facebook, Twitter or Instagram (these are the ones I´ve chosen), with the hashtag #100HappyDays and the day you are posting from the challenge. It isn´t that hard really, and is fun! 

I´ve always considered my self an optimistic person, and I reckon that the reason others are pessimistic or always feeling blue is because they look at life from the wrong angle. Happiness is all around us, and if you are reading this you have a lot to be grateful (Unless you are a gay person living in Uganda, an unhappy Venezuelan in Venezuela, or a revolutionary chap in Ukraine… Hey, at least you have wifi).

The website starts with this great sentence: “Can you be happy for a 100 days in a row?” It later says that 71% of people didn´t complete the challenge arguing that they didn´t have enough time and they were “super” busy.

The website says it all if you are smart enough to notice what it implies. What they are really saying is: “Happiness depends on you, and in order to be happy you ought to give yourself some time to… well, to make yourself happy”.

Why would I do that? People successfully completing the challenge claimed to:

  •  Start noticing what makes them happy every day;
  •  Be in a better mood every day;
  •  Start receiving more compliments from other people;
  •  Realize how lucky they are to have the life they have;
  •  Become more optimistic;
  •  Fall in love during the challenge.

Now, what are you waiting for? Go for it, you have nothing to lose, unless you don´t have a smartphone or a digital camera or… well you know, “some time”.

Every time I need to put a smile on my face, I just look at this picture for a couple of minutes 🙂

Ps. My boss recently lent me a cooking book, like a really Mexican traditional dishes cooking book, she said “There you go, have it for a couple of weeks and cook something from the book”. So, I´ll be posting one of its recipes this weekend, wait for it.

 

A Holy Review on God´s Entourage

You might not know this, but I learnt to read since I was a very wee kid, and I wasn’t just reading kids books, I was reading some stuff not suitable for my young age (not  like freaking Twilight or 50 Shades of Grey). So, the reason for this post is to talk about one of the books that astonished me the most while I was growing up, “La Tournée de Dios” by Enrique Jardiel Poncela. It was written and published in 1932, and it presents a brilliant story where the author portrays the hypothetical arrival of God to Earth (regardless of his/her existence) for a wee visit. Indeed, at the time I read it the thought of having the Christian God among us, hanging out, telling us about his point of view regarding the human race, never occurred to me before.

Have you tried playing that game as a child? It was more difficult than paying your tuition as a grown up.

Jardiel Poncela begins dedicating this book to God itself, and presents it as an “almost divine novel”, as well as thanking the left and right political views, communism, the republic, the atheists, and human kind.

So God comes to earth, right? And one of the first things that people notice is that he isn´t really that into “humans”, he presents himself as a dictator (and dictatorship as the best political system for humans), shocking everybody as the current debate among internationalists was about the best political model in an Utopian world.

Throughout the author´s sarcasm, God expresses his opinions to the public, the media, the governments, and the Vatican itself. The Pope, feeling overshadowed by God and his harsh criticism to the foundation of the Catholic Church, fakes sickness and secludes himself in his room, fearing the thought of being replaced by God among Christians.

What is amazing about his narrative is the fact that Jardiel Poncela criticizes, through God´s statements, his own society; calling it shallow, lame, anxious, lazy and ineffably uncomfortable with committing to anything.  Which, now that I think about it, his opinions apply to nowadays Western Civilization.

Best known as… I want to go to pee but I´m way too comfortable in my bed.

We´ve became hedonistic/egocentric brats, unable to emphasize with somebody else´s disgrace without taking a snapshot of it and uploading it to Facebook/Twitter.

The level of our discomforts stays in the vicinity of social media, where we protest, argue, and “defend” human and animal rights by retweeting and sharing. We question not what we fail to understand, but the fact that “things” aren´t properly explained us, discarding the topic and moving on to the next one without mercy.

“Humanity, unleashed and shameless, lost self-confidence, and no concept of duty, cocky, arrogant and foolish, full of haughtiness, not willing to resign, frivolous and frantic forgotten serenity and simplicity, ambitious and sad , demanding much more to life than life can give, deprived of the joy for the joy that is the only way of joy, running madly towards the final bankruptcy.” – Enrique Jardiel Poncela.

This is just the way Louis CK said modern society would react to Jesus second coming to Earth, where we wouldn´t be able to stay put to Jesus´message to men because social media must be briefed with the “individual exclusive” of our tweets about Jesus.

The story is full with gracious characters and hilarious situations where God simply gives up on human kind, wait, no, is the other way around, human kind gives up on God as he becomes available, reachable, losing his mysticism.

“In the divine, the bygone youths had faith and believed. Today’s youth do not have faith nor believe. And one thinks… having no faith.”

Ps. Interesting how the international community has looked away from Putin´s despicable actions against the LGTB community in Russia, especially on the dawn of the Winter Olympic Games that will take place in Sochi. Harsh to think of some nations fight for freedom and human rights on foreign land, but only against adversaries that are easily defeated.

Ps 2. Or maybe, this is just an anti Russia media campaign foster by the American just like the good old days?

Ps3. Have you been following what the international journalists who have arrived to Sochi already have encountered? The Washington Post gives us a good glance here.

Happy Mexican Festivus

Can I talk to you guys about happy things? I just feel like talking about great things today, as far as I know, regardless of how cloudy the day gets, well, there´s always a bright side, right? Besides, only two more days until Christmas, so, let´s be nice to each other (especially you, the quasi-hipster about to complain to the clerk at that organic coffee place because of the temperature of your soy-slim-latte-machiatto-doubleshot).

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Even if you aren´t feeling particularly optimist today, that doesn´t mean you aren´t thankful for the life you are living and the people walking alongside with you every day (except those vegetarians… but until we find a cure…).

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Mi casa es tu casa

So, let´s talk about something awesome, my country: Mexico. This is a great place where to be, regardless of the political turmoil, the poverty, the corrupted political system, having the U.S.A. as neighbour, still, Mexico is amazing. I´m thankful I was born here; I love travelling around the world and being able to say proudly “I´m Mexican”. There´s nothing greater than to listen to people´s reaction when I say where I´m from.

  • “So, you like to party hard?”
  • “Do you guys ride donkeys as a primitive form of transportation?”
  • “Why do you speak English, aren´t you supposed to speak only Mexican?”
  • “You guys are great at dancing”
  • “What is it with the chilli lollies?”
  • “Are you a Luchadore?”
  • “Eat this Jalapeno!”
  • “Ay caramba!”
  • “Do you sell weed?”

Besides, being Mexican is clearly a competitive advantage, specifically in how we find our way into happiness every single time. I know, after the war on drugs (“after”, it is still happening no matter what the current administration´s efforts to hide it), people decided that life must go on, and that they couldn´t be living in the shadows.

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The Zocalo, the cathedral, the flag… this is Mexico

Today, Mexicans know these are hard times, the political arena is confusing and the government isn´t really focusing on the people but in the private sector to reactivate the local economy. However, Mexicans have something more important, the strength of this country is its people´s faith, passion, patience, and hope, intangible values that motivate my countrymen into believing they can do it, and trust me, most of the time they do and achieve amazing things.

So, this existential post is dedicated to my country, its people, culture and values. Whenever you get the chance, come to Mexico, you won´t regret it.

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Happy holidays to all of you, I´ll be hanging out with these amazing girls: my sisters.

Just the Uncle

More than a year ago I left not only a beautiful country but my other family and friends. I´ve missed them so much all this time, but yesterday, I received one of the most amazing gifts in a long time, I got to see my step niece and nephew. My good friend Ana is visiting her family in Monterrey, Mexico, so it was a good opportunity to meet up. Yesterday we had a wee reunion, so Ana was taken to my sister´s place, when she got off the car she said “look who is inside the car”, these two were inside and the first thing that crossed my mind was “They were so young when I left they might not even remember who I am”… but they did

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Today we went for some coffee, not great kiwi coffee as back in New Zealand, but average Starbucks instead.  While I watched them playing around, laughing, running, making jokes, smiling, I couldn´t but remember those amazing days in New Zealand, since the moment I arrived to the day I left they were an important part of my life.

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These two kids taught me many things, the most important thing I discovered about myself through them was that I´m good with children and that I´m a caring loving adult. Honestly, that´s one of the things sometimes I worry about, you know, that question that from time to time wanders in your head: “Am I a good person?” (sometimes followed by “Did I lock the front door this morning before going to work?”)

As I mentioned before on one of my post about the “Impostor Syndrome”, there are some things that trigger our self-esteem , and these kids certainly helped me out with that. They are caring loving children, innocent and bright and, in general, freaking awesome.

So these two little fellows represent happiness not only to me, but to their family; they bright up my day, and no matter where they are they put a smile on my face, reminding me that life is simple, and that some good ice cream could solve any problem you might have. 1506565_10152065337236893_1171385022_n

“Self-esteem is made up primarily of two things: feeling lovable and feeling capable.” – Jack Canfield

I know, no recipes nor anything about traveling around the world, neither tacos nor politics, just these two kids who make my heart melt every time I hear them say “Uncle Luis”.