to the level of Spain or Greece. Ominouslyrnfor Germans, the mark has latelyrnbeen slipping against the pound and dollar.rnThe strong Deutschmark has enabledrnGermans to enjoy package toursrnall around the world and to impress underprivilegedrnaborigines with theirrnbulging beer-bellies and gold bangles.rnThe luxury holiday has become a way ofrnlife for them. Not being able to affordrnpackage holidays would be an unthinkablernblow to the German Wohlstand.rnGermans dare not lose their livingrnstandard because they have nothing else.rn(Appearances of prosperity are somewhatrndeceptive: for example, Germany hasrnthe lowest percentage of owner-occupiedrnproperty in Western Europe, andrnthere is a large black market of foreign laborersrnwho take or send their untaxedrnwages home.) The danger for the Bonnrnestablishment is that, if the German peoplernare no longer allowed to be fat, theyrnmay begin to wonder why they have tornremain impotent.rnMichael Walker writes from Cologne.rnLetter FromrnColombiarnby Jeffrey Roberto VillavecesrnDrugs and the People’s WillrnWhen American drug czar Barrv McCaffreyrnvisited Colombia last October,rnthe two-year freeze on top-level contactsrnbetween the United States and thernworld’s foremost producer and exporterrnof cocaine finally came to an end. U.S.­Colombianrnrelations had reached an alltimernlow last March, when Washingtonrn”decertified” Colombia —meaning Bogotarncan no longer qualify for Americanrnaid in the war on drugs —for a secondrnconsecutive year, ostensibly for not doingrnenough to battle narcotraffiekers.rn”Colombia is of tremendous importancernto the United States in economic, politi-rnThe God-Simulatorrnby Richard Moorern(On the Discovery that the Experience of God canrnbe Duplicated in the Laboratory)rn”God’s nothing, mere effect.rnThus, to the brain, called mind,rnwe cleverly connectrnelectrodes, knobs, and findrnmere magnetism yieldsrnGod’s presence. God, You blew it!”rnGod answered, “Magnet fieldsrnwere how I chose to do it.rnWith such connections, vourncan make your poor brains feelrnpresence of apples too.rnAre apples, then, unreal?”rncal, and cultural terms,” said McCaffrey,rn”but I must underscore that in the shortrnterm, our relationship must be determinedrnby the drug issue.”rnColombia has always been one of thernmost isolated countries in this hemisphere.rnThe country is even divided internallyrnby an incredible topographv. Arntraveler crossing from one valley to anotherrnshould not be surprised to findrnstarkly different dialects spoken andrntraditions observed. Contraband hasrnmoved through Colombia since colonialrntimes, and no government, much lessrnone based in Lima, could hope to controlrnthe region.rnThe situation remains the same 400rnyears later, with constant clashes betweenrndivergent political and geographicalrnrealities in which the centralizedrngovernment provokes continuing resentmentrnin outlying regions. This anti-rnBogota resistance has given the guerrillarnmovement a regionalistie as well as populistrnbase. At the same time, the centralismrnwhich has been such a powerfulrnforce in Colombian politics since thernconsHtution of 1886 has made buying offrnthe government just that much easier.rnThe power hierarchy in Colombiarncan be safely divided between “tools”rnand “nontools” of the Cali drug cartel.rnThe “nontools” can be further dividedrninto those who resist the cartel and thosernwho are passive observers. The latter describesrnthe vast majority of Colombiansrntoday. “Live and let live” rarely had it sorngood as it does here. A robbery or even arnhomicide will rarely provoke a responsernfrom onlookers. Once, after hearingrnglass breaking outside of my apartment, Irnwas surprised to see a car-stereo thief runningrnthrough a dense crowd of bvstandersrnwith no reaction from any ofrnthem. Not man)’ heroes out there, unfortunately.rnThis “neutering” of Colombia, as Irncall it, is a result of many vears of violencernwhich has killed the people’s willrnto fight back. One of the most spectacularrnexamples of this process was the 1984rnLara assassination. In 1982, PablornEmilio Escobar Gaviria was elected tornthe Colombian congress with a suplente,rnor running mate, named Dr. Jairo OrtegarnRamirez. They were part of the “NewrnLiberal” coalition, a Liberal Party fachonrnwhich included political dissident LuisrnCarlos Galan and which was, ironically,rnstrongly anticorruption. Pablo Escobarrnwas certainly a new breed of politician,rnbut one which most Colombians wouldrn34/CHRONICLESrnrnrn