Anti-corruption maracas

The Guardian published an article yesterday titled “Mexico City mayor ridiculed over plan to fight sex crimes with plastic whistles.”  Mexico has a real problem with sexual assaults and a lot of them occur on public transportation every year.  The Mexico City government has dealt with the situation by running “a fleet of pink buses only for female passengers, along with women-only carriages on the subway system.”  It’s estimated that 94% of sex crimes are not reported, giving an idea of how much victims trust the system.


The whistle proposal has been roundly criticized.  Critics accuse the mayor of “patronizing women instead of tackling men’s boorish and criminal behavior.”  The response on social media has been especially humorous:




Traveling while ugly, State Department edition

Government agencies using social media in ways that they think are funny or cute are usually just cringe-worthy.  Here’s a good example courtesy of the US State Department:


MarketWatch shares some of the best responses on Twitter:

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and concludes with an excellent question:  What should you do if you are a 10?  Sadly, the State Department gives no advice about that possibility.

“Misusing” your rights to social media: Ugandan edition

National elections are going on in Uganda today and I thought it a good excuse to take a break from the endless presidential campaigning in the US.

Here is long-time President/dictator Museveni campaigning in his signature color:

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even though there seems little chance that he could lose the election, a president for life like Museveni takes no chances!  He has blacked out social media today because some Ugandans were “‘misusing’ their rights.”  I guess their rights to social media are determined by the state and anti-Museveni rhetoric is not appreciated.

Here are some of my favorite campaign posters:


why is this guy kneeling and clapping?  or maybe he is praying? What he is trying to convey?


good to know that this woman will protect us in case of aliens attack. I wonder what her credentials are that would support this claim?


Hmm, this candidate looks suspiciously like Rihanna.

I’m curious whether any of these three get elected.  Will supporters of the Rihanna be disappointed when they meet the real candidate?

h/t to Kenyan Facts (@KResearcher) for photos of these great campaign posters



How much is that selfie in the window?

Kevin Spacey (who apparently is president on Netflix?) “ran into” EPN (Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto) in Cancun last week.

Spacey tweeted this:



First, EPN has been in office over 18 months at this point. Second, no one would call him President Nieto. Pena is his last name (Nieto is likely his mother’s maiden name).

But still, not bad for free publicity. 

Except it wasn’t free. It’s been reported that Spacey was paid millions of dollars to come to Cancun and hang with EPN. Here’s the story in Spanish, and here’s an English account.

People have been having fun with the Spacey – EPN sitdown:




Zimbabwe, part 2


I’ve never been a bigger fan of Facebook than after reading this article about an anonymous Zimbabwean (aka Baba Jukwa, or “father of Jukwa”) tormenting Mugabe and the ruling party via social media.

Baba Jukwa claims to be a “a genuine insider’s account of the factional battles and corruption with President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu-PF.”  He has posted numerous stories on the evil doings of party members, including tales of “rape, murder and corruption.” One of the best parts of the story is that he often gives out the said evildoer’s mobile phone number and urges concerned citizens to call them with their questions and complaints.

Some have questioned whether Baba Jukwa’s stories are credible, but the government (and its mouthpiece newspapers) certainly seems to be rattled.  For instance,

The Herald newspaper labeled Baba Jukwa’s posts as a “destructive, malicious… an imperialist takeover… working to destroy the revolutionary party from within by engaging in malicious and unholy alliances with the MDC-T party”.

In addition, Mugabe’s party, Zanu-PF, is “offering large rewards for the true identity of Baba Jukwa.”

So far more than 93,000 people have officially “liked” the FB page, which is a lot given the population of Zimbabwe is only 12 million, but “it is widely believed that many more follow him anonymously.”

This story makes me very happy.