Anatomy of a Rightwing Lie: The Failure of Land Reform in Mexico

A “Centrist Democrat” just told me that land reform failed in Mexico after the Revolution. I was shocked because no land reform in history or at least modern history has ever failed. So I had to go look it up. Well, like everything right-wingers say, it was basically a lie. Surprise surprise! I know, you’re shocked, huh?

Turns out that land reform failed in the first 15 years after the Revolution because it was never even implemented! In short, there simply was no land reform. Only 1% of the land was distributed. All of the presidents afterwards were conservatives who sided with large landowners and hence opposed the reforms. Most of them were large landowners themselves. Of course Uncle Satan, I mean Uncle Sam, opposed all attempts at land reform in Mexico, as the US has always sided with the rich and against ordinary workers and presidents. Both Democratic and Republican Presidents follow this model.

After Cardenas came in, a great deal of land was distributed and the ejido system was set up. It’s worked great ever since. There were some efforts later on by right-wingers to unravel the ejido system, but they have always been reversed. Yet when I Googled the question, I came up with a list of sites talking about the lie of “the failed land reform in Mexico.” And there were a slew of recent articles from the US press about how the present ejido system was a complete failure and had to be dismantled.

Capitalists will always oppose land reforms everywhere and at all times because the only thing the capitalists care about is concentrating as much land in their hands as possible. I did some research on that too and it was all just wishful thinking. Turns out the ejido system is working great. There’s plenty of food in Mexico.

How do you know a capitalist is lying? His lips are moving!

Why would a land reform fail in the first place? Because a system of haciendas where 1% of the population owns all the arable land and 99% of the rural population is left to barely scratch out a living as landless peasants? Because peasants are literally too dumb to grow food.

This is the argument of White Nationalists to the land reforms in Zimbabwe: “Niggers are too dumb to grow food!” I have been to their websites and argued with them over this, and everyone there told me flat out that “niggers are too dumb to grow food!” Well, that’s pretty stupid. How did these Blacks survive in Africa for the last 12,000 years since they had agriculture if they’re too stupid to grow food? Obviously they know how to grow food otherwise they wouldn’t have been doing it for millennia. And by the way agriculture appeared first in Africa before anywhere else in the world.

This was echoed by the press all across the imperialist world, especially in the US and UK. So the message of the US and UK imperialist press (which is all of it) was: “Niggers are too dumb to grow food!” So we see that the West can turn viciously racist on a dime if the imperatives of its capitalists compel it to. All of this antiracist woke stuff is just nonsense and lies. Capitalists could give a toss about race.

The reforms had failed forever because the UK was protecting 2,000 British farmers who owned 60% of the land and almost all of the good land. This is why brutal sanctions were put on Zimbabwe – to protect those British latinfundistas.

Incidentally, going back to the first paragraph, have you noticed how often “Centrists” and “moderates” parrot the most disgusting right-wing lies? What’s so moderate about that? Most Centrists are just right-wingers, perhaps a bit more compassionate but right-wingers nonetheless. And they’re all completely brainwashed by the Western media too. They literally believe every word the government says about domestic and foreign policy when a Democrat is in. When a Republican is in, they support an imperialist foreign policy again, but they oppose the domestic agenda. They’re pretty much just liberal right-wingers.

What is a Centrist anyway? It’s an invertebrate. Here in the US, it’s literally someone who believes the Republicans are right half the time and the Democrats are right the other half of the time. Given how far apart the parties are on domestic policy, that’s a completely incoherent politics. And what’s so moderate about someone who says Republicans are right half the time. Hell, Republicans are right 0% of the time. If they weren’t they wouldn’t be Republicans.

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One thought on “Anatomy of a Rightwing Lie: The Failure of Land Reform in Mexico”

  1. I agree strongly with you, Robert. The US is the true evil empire not the USSR. It is ironic that the US used Soviet-style land reforms in Asia:

    https://www.rbth.com/international/2017/01/31/how-the-us-used-soviet-style-land-reforms-to-counter-communism-in-asia_692431

    This is a good comment from one of the articles below:

    The political climate in Northeast Asia in the middle of the Twentieth Century was very different from the political climate today. The 1930s, 40s, and 50s saw Northeast Asia gripped by violence and conflict.

    The turmoil may have played a role in enabling significant change.

    In defeated and occupied Japan, the United States played a role in forcing land reform on the country. In Taiwan, the United States drew up the cadastral maps which were the basis of the land reform program. In China, South Korea, and Taiwan, large landowners were associated with Japanese occupiers. The looming ideological struggle between communists and capitalists made radical redistribution a relevant topic of discussion. Today, radical redistribution is mostly off the political agenda…

    …During our conversation, Studwell said that many African governments are run by elites who are divorced from smallholder farming. Many government officials view smallholder farming as backwards, and strongly support large-scale farming. This is in stark contrast to the Mid-Twentieth Century leaders of China, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan — many of whom came from farming families — who actively supported and encouraged smallholder farming.

    This perhaps suggests that you would need to focus on electing politicians who were more sympathetic to land reform before you could make progress, but these politicians would likely have impacts in many other areas which you would also want to assess…

    …Dietrich Vollrath also raised the concern of a trade-off between impact and tractability when we spoke with him. Regions with the most unequal land redistribution which might benefit the most from redistribution, e.g. Latin America, are also those where large landholders are politically powerful and will be able to forcefully oppose any major redistribution of land.

    You would need to find a country in the sweet spot (if one exists) where there is enough inequality such that redistribution would still be beneficial but not so much that large landholders can strangle any attempt at being forced to relinquish their assets. We suspect this is a particularly thorny issue to solve.

    We don’t have a particularly coherent story for why land redistribution has become less politically attractive or how to make it more attractive. Studwell would likely point to the rise of neoliberal economics and a knee jerk opposition to redistribution. Neoliberal economists would likely point to failures of land redistribution across the world.

    In their 2020 report on land inequality, Uneven Ground, the International Land Coalition writes,

    “While at specific moments in history, redistributive agrarian reforms have played a decisive role, they require exceptional social and political conditions to succeed. For instance, they have been effective during revolutions: in Mexico in 1910, in Bolivia in 1953, and in Cuba in 1959. The same happened in China and Vietnam a few decades later. They have also been successful in the aftermath of wars and during a country’s occupation. Examples include Japan, Taiwan, and Korea after World War II.”

    *******

    https://forum.effectivealtruism.org/posts/LempBhdJe6HzwtDxd/intervention-report-agricultural-land-redistribution

    https://www.jstor.org/stable/3993564

    https://www.devex.com/news/land-reform-for-the-modern-era-88732

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