Monday, July 08, 2013

Creelman Interview with Porfirio Díaz in Pearson's Magazine March 1908

***UPDATE Dec 2013 My book, Metaphysical Odyssey Into the Mexican Revolution, is now available***

Still plowing on here with the revisions to my introduction to my translation of Francisco I. Madero's Spiritist Manual of 1911. The new edition will be published this fall in both paperback and Kindle-- and Spanish. Stay tuned. Apart from providing more of the metaphysical context (see my previous posts on Madame BlavatskyAllen Kardec, the Bhagavad-Gita and El Niño Fidencio) I'll go into much more detail about Madero's political career and the Revolution, which he launched in November 1910. And apropos of the Revolution, the fuse was lit in 1908 by yellow journalist James Creelman's interview with Porfirio Diaz, the dictator who was then nearing 80 years old, without having indicated a clear successor. (Chimes of Hosni Mubarak...) If there were a banana peel of destiny, Don Porfirio smoked it. It is a deeply strange interview... a bubblebath of drool... Read it for yourself here.

The oft-quoted part, where Porfirio Diaz states that he does not want to run for reelection in 1910 and would welcome an opposition party, appears on the 12th page in.

“I welcome an opposition party in the Mexican republic,” [Don Porfirio] said. “If it appears, I will regard it as a blessing, not as an evil. And of it can develop power, not to exploit, but to govern, I will stand by it, support it, advise it and forget myself in the successful inauguration of complete democratic government of the country.
“It is enough for me that I have seen Mexico rise among the peaceful and useful nations. I have no desire to continue in the Presidency. This nation is ready for her ultimate life of freedom.”

Of course Don Porfirio did run in 1910, jailed the opposition candidate, Framcisco I. Madero, and outrageously stuffed the ballot boxes. Madero then overthrew him in 1911.