Uruguay’s election – final week campaign color

We continue our eclectic, non-citizens but informed-residents, coverage of the Uruguayan national elections. Again, from the perspective that as immigrants legally resident in this welcoming nation, we have an obligation to learn how things are done in our new country. Just the same as we expected, when living in the USA as native-born US citizens, that legal immigrants to the USA should do. Learn how the system works. Learn and use, at least to a basic functional extent, the dominant language. Be part of it to the extent you are legally allowed – think about how it impacts you. Learn from your neighbors. Read, watch, listen to the local media in the local language.

In the past few weeks we’ve had some vocal “expats” criticize us for writing about the Uruguay election, as if it were supposed to be none of our business, none of any expat’s business. Sorry, we’re not that kind of “expat” and we’re glad we’re not. What’s more important is we’ve had Uruguayan friends thank us for covering it. Friends telling us that they appreciate how we are presenting some detailed and balanced information of how Uruguay’s representative democratic republic actually works, to the English-speaking expat/immigrant audience. Neighbors happy to get into political discussions with us, or to explain how the mechanism of the vote works. We’re gratified that our amigos and vecinos appreciate our interest and our election coverage, and we feel that you, the readers of our site who are considering moving to Uruguay, in the process, or already living here, need to understand its political environment and process. That’s why we share it with you.

Certainly if you ever want to become fully part of Uruguayan society and culture, you should be aware of its system of governance. Whether or not you plan to get citizenship or just remain as a resident, or even just do the “visa hop” (we don’t recommend that, and for most it’s not even a visa, but it’s disrespectful to the country), you will be living here. Paying taxes indirectly or directly here. Hopefully making some friends here beyond just expat circles. Perhaps employing people here, maybe starting a business here, possibly working in a job here. Learn about your new country. We’re learning, we’ve almost certainly getting some things wrong, but we’re trying to understand, and sharing what we learn.

First, let’s look at many of the colorful campaign banners and booths all over town. In Centro, at the weekly feria, out in front of the big supermarkets, on lampposts and phone poles, and on houses all around town, there are signs of the election almost everywhere in our medium-sized modest beach town of Atlántida.

What is the actual process of casting a ballot here, you may wonder. How does a Uruguayan citizen vote? Continue reading Uruguay’s election – final week campaign color

Reblog/reaction: No, you can’t have your own president Mujica – Medium

Reblogging a brilliant piece by Medium contributor “rabble” who covers politics and history, often for Uruguay. With our take on it, and a whole bunch of on-the-ground observation by us, added here in our Uruguay Expat Life post.

No, you can’t have your own president Mujica. — Medium.

So why can’t there be more leaders like Mujica. Well it’s complicated. He’s a reflection of the politics and country which elected him…

To explain why Mujica got elected, how he was able to govern and reshape Uruguay we need a tiny bit of a history lesson.

screencap snippet of start of article
From Medium.com

This is such a great counter-piece to all the excesses of Hipster-Uruguay articles that both Uruguayans and most expats/immigrants here are getting sick and tired of seeing. (Something we’ve skewered right here before.) We do admire Mujica, though some of our neighbors in both the Uruguayan and the Anglophone expat communities dislike, or even despise him. We understand why they do and do not demonize them for it – they have points that make sense. Continue reading Reblog/reaction: No, you can’t have your own president Mujica – Medium

Uruguay Politics

We’re obviously not experts, but there’s a lot happening this year, with the Presidential election and legislative elections. Whether a new expat, a longer-time immigrant with residency, a naturalized citizen of Uruguay, or a native Uruguayan who follows expat news – This election’s results will affect all of us.

Lacalle Pou’s campaign HQ hit by a break-in that took nearly everything.

We’ve been posting a selection of news stories and commentary on them, and encouraging discussion, over the past couple of months. Mostly at our social media sites – so be sure to check our pages. Addresses and links to them are right at the top and sidebar of every page here on the website.

To get you started, here’s a post I did today, as our Uruguay for Me Page on Google+, to our Uruguay Expat Life Community(like a forum but on Google), about a break-in at the campaign headquarters of the leading opposition candidate. Shades of Watergate!

Read it, and if you have a Google ID (Android, Gmail, YouTube, etc.) participate in the discussion at the Uruguay Expat Life Community.

— Mark the dual-country political junkie.