Back in November, I posted a photo of EPN digging a hole and asked “My goodness, who in the world is advising EPN these days?” My free PR advice to him was that “When you’re in a hole, you best stop digging..” Well, the same advice could be given to the PRI as a whole. Who is advising these yahoos? How can you be so tone deaf? I guess 70+ years of monopoly political power leads to the same kind of attention to PR as 70+ years of monopoly economic power.
You may remember that Cuauhtémoc Gutiérrez de la Torre, the PRI party president, was running a prostitution ring out of his office. Apparently that is no cause for expulsion from the party though. Forbes just published an article called “Running A Prostitution Network At The PRI Party Offices In Mexico City Is A ‘Personal Matter’.” The title pretty much says it all, but let’s get into the details, which somehow manage to be even more unbelievable than expected. Here are my favorites:
1. “Cesar Camacho, the PRI’s powerful National Chairman, [on] why he has not been expelled, he answered: “Cuauhtémoc’s criminal behavior is his personal behavior; it is not the PRI’s business.” He brushed off any negative effects the scandal has had on the PRI’s reputation.” Maybe the PRI’s reputation is already so tarnished that a little prostitution ring is nothing to worry about.
2. So why might it not just be a “personal” issue? “Gutierrez took advantage of his position to keep a network of prostitutes on the PRI’s payroll, used the PRI’s offices to have sex with them and the PRI’s image to lure potential victims (mostly single mothers, divorced young women and students) into applying for jobs that were misrepresented in the classified pages of a major newspaper.” Yikes!
3. “Noticias MVS sent an under-cover female reporter to apply for the job at a “government office,” offering a salary up to 14,000 Mexican pesos (around $1,000) a month. The candidates for the job (ages 18 to 32) where asked to specify their weight, height and availability, and change into short skirts and high heels. Those hired were later given a blazer with the PRI logo. In the 4-hour-long audio recording, parts of which were aired for the first time on April 2 by Noticias MVS, Priscilla [the interviewer] is heard telling the undercover reporter that she will need to perform sexual acts —“oral or vaginal”— when her boss asks for it. If he opted for oral sex, she was instructed: “You have to swallow his semen so he gets happy.” The reporter is informed that she will be on the PRI’s payroll.” Holy cow!
4. “Gutiérrez demanded sex from the new recruits on the first day. Around 12 to 15 women were permanently at his service. If they gained weight or resisted following his orders, they were fired.”
5. “80% of all Mexicans said in a recent poll that they do not believe Gutiérrez will ever be punished.” I’m surprised it’s actually that low!
Here’s the charmer himself on the right. What a guy and what a frickin political party. I thought the PRI was going to capitalize on the opportunity to be in charge again to show that they had changed their colors and learned a thing or two in opposition. I couldn’t have been more wrong.