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Back January 26th, 2009 Forward
There's something wrong with the world.

Mexican hit man admits dumping 300 bodies in acid

Further proof, as though any were needed, that Terry Pratchett was correct when he said:

"... there are hardly any excesses of the most crazed psychopath that cannot easily be duplicated by a normal, kindly family man who just comes in to work every day and has a job to do." (Small Gods)

The man in question was paid to dispose of bodies. He was paid $915 per week to dispose of bodies - which is almost as much as I get paid to find out why people's computers aren't working. But then, I'm not working in the Mexican economy. The article doesn't say anything about the average weekly wage in Mexico (which, according to AOL Find A Job is approximately $562 per week) but what he earned for disposing of bodies in acid is probably better than the wages of any other job he might have been suited to.

(For the sake of comparison: the average weekly wage in Australia as at 15 MAY 2008 was $1124).

The question of why disposing of bodies for a drug cartel boss pays so much more than the average weekly wage in Mexico is one which has a lot of rather complex answers. One can point to the prohibitionist policies on drug use which result in the whole process becoming a criminal enterprise rather than a civil one; one can point to the nature of the Mexican economy, which is still wilting in the shade cast by the US; one can point to the civil and political situation in Mexico. Men like Meza Lopez don't just crop up out of nowhere. They're created by their circumstances.

The article I've linked to doesn't say anything about the circumstances which led Meza Lopez to accept the job he was given. There's no mention of family, no mention of where he started out, no mention of his background. Only a mention of where he ended up. If we'd been reading a story about this man's success, we'd know all of these facts, all of his links to the community he lived within. But as he's a criminal, a killer, a hit man, we get just a dissociated picture of him, devoid of context, devoid of background.

The article's tags on the ABC website are interesting, too: law-crime-and-justice; crime; murder-and-manslaughter; mexico. I picked it up out of my RSS ticker because of the headline.

When they talk about the banality of evil, they need to mention the banality of the normal in the same breath.

Current Mood: discontent discontent
Things I find in my RSS ticker, part 2

10 dead after Turkey avalanche

Dear ABC headline writer,

Thanks ever so for the most bizzare mental image I've had so far this year. I'd like to point out changing the mental turkeys involved in the avalanche from frozen to live doesn't help here, but makes things even weirder.

As an aside, you might wish to alter the headline to "10 dead after avalanche in Turkey", since that conveys the intent of the story much more clearly, without the inadvertent "hang on a minute?" image of an avalanche of large barnyard fowl.



Current Mood: indescribable indescribable
Back January 26th, 2009 Forward