What if Mexico was just another Canada?

By working with Mexico to get them to a similar economic status as the US & Canada, the government would save $6.2 billion / year.

Arizona’s Government hates Mexicans. Apparently, Republicans from the north hate them, too, likely believing them to be carrying either the deadly “Cooties” virus, or perhaps a rare form of possibly contagious “Will do manual labor” disease. These diseases are not, apparently, contracted via handled food, as is evidenced by the vast amount of Mexican food joints dotting these United States. First hand accounts of actual white Americans living on the Texas border, Conservative Ranchers and Liberal Artists alike, show that most people who actually live and work next to Mexico miss the days when either side could come and go freely. Mexicans would come and do ranch hand jobs in the US, while US tourists could drop into Mexico for an experience that ChiChis just can’t seem to provide. But outside of the idiotic opinion of an American people not to be trusted to make opinions based around their Daily Show / Fox News version of “knowledge,” let’s look at some facts, and a shocking revelation. Are you ready for it? Did I mention it’s shocking?!

Facts on the US / Mexico Border

  1. The Border Fence is Ridiculously Expensive. The Government Accountability Office, that twig of the Legislative Branch which is responsible for making sure money is spent as it was intended to be, reports that the border fence will cost $6.5 Billion just to maintain. The fence costs between $1 – $10 million per mile to build, depending on terrain and the type of fence used. It doesn’t yet cover the entire length of the border (just under 2,000 miles). At a very conservative estimate of $2 million per mile to build, that’s $4 billion just to build a fence to keep people out. By September of 2009, there were already 3,000 breaches (yeah, people can get through fences), each costing $1,000 to fix. That’s $3 million. So over twenty years, the total cost of the fence is at a bare minimum $10.5 billion. Other estimates put it at $49 billion over twenty five years.
  2. We Spend Between 11 – 22x More on Fighting Crime in Mexico than we do Helping them to Improve their Economic Solvency. The US spent $549 million trying to stop smugglers and violent crimes in Mexico last year (2010). We spent $25 million trying to create jobs and help otherwise stabilize Mexico’s economy. One might easily argue that we shouldn’t be spending money policing Mexico or trying to boost jobs there in the first place, the but the fact is that we do spend lots of cash in Mexico…policing it anyway.
  3.  Of the 754,412 kgs of Drugs Seized by the DEA, 95% of that was Marijuana. So of the $2.27 billion annual budget the DEA had for 2010, over $2.15 can theoretically be presumed to have been focused on reefer. The rest was spent on cocaine, heroine & meth (I didn’t include hallucinogens as they’re measured in doses vs. kgs). That’s $130 million on the rest of the drugs combined. Funny, for the money spent, I don’t see many people shooting smack, but there’s no shortage of pot smoking going on. Not to mention that the 722,476 kgs of marijuana they seized, which equates to 25 million ounces. If sold in eighth bags (a pretty standard amount of weed purchased on the street) at $30 / pop + $10 / bag in taxes for the government ($40 / bag of decent buds), we’re talking $2 billion / year in revenues for the government from taxes. That’s $4.15 billion extra in cash in the government’s pocket every year, not to mention the $1 billion we’re spending on keeping pot smokers and sellers in federal prisons.
Now compare this to Canada. You don’t hear about Canadians risking life and limb to come to America in search of work. Aside from Neil Young, retirees and a few hockey players, I don’t know that anyone from Canada even wants to live in the USA (they don’t believe in freedom up there, I hear). If we turn Mexico into another US or Canada, in that we spend that $95 billion we were planning to spend on border safety and a war on a drug safer than alcohol on getting our neighbor to the south to be our economic equivalent, we’ll make that cash back in another 15 years and after that be sitting on a pretty profit. Not to mention all the iPods, Cadillacs and Justin Beeber CDs we could sell a lusting new consumerist society.

Up Next: Harvest Moon, September 12th, 2011