Make the bed you lie in

I’m late to this but there was a poll a while back that showed 41% of Limeños would vote for a candidate they know robs public funds, as long as their candidate does “obras” (public works).

roba, pero hace obras

(Datum via Frequencia Latina)

This is in the context of the upcoming municipal and regional elections in Peru. I don’t follow Lima politics much but I believe the current mayor in Lima @SusanaVillaran has focused on organizational reforms (most visibly public transportation reform which is badly needed) and public opinion is that she doesn’t do enough brick-and-mortar public works.

It’s somewhat understandable that a person living in the poor “Pueblos Jovenes” cares about nothing more than getting running water and sewer but I’m sure the 41% also includes smartphone toting professionals and university students who should know better.

Corruption with impunity is endemic at all levels of leadership in Peru. Mamacita linda has been auditing local municipalities on behalf of the national “Controlaria” (a governmental audit agency) and their findings are horrible. At one small municipality, there was a payment of S/.15,000 (~US$4,500) for “expenses” to a close aide to the mayor. There are no receipts, no indication what the “expenses” were or how they were related to official business. Nothing. To put that in perspective, teachers probably make less than S/.2,000 per month in this town.

When the auditors finish their report, the national Controlaria will review the report and send it to the Fiscalia (Justice Department) where it will die. 6 months down the line a small blurb will be published in a legal register somewhere that the auditors’ report is invalid because the lead auditor only signed 126 instead of the full 128 pages as required by law nr 23456.45(b)(ii)(j) para 65.34.9 and there it ends.

* * *

Yesterday Ollanta Humala swore in a new Finance/Economy Minister here in Peru. You can view the details of the transition at IKN. Mamacita linda said something this morning about “not sure what will happen next” with the Peruvian economy and I opined that it wouldn’t make a bit of difference.

On her way to work Mamacita linda yelled out the door “I don’t know, some economists are kinda crazy sometimes!”

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