This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book is concerned with the purposes, objectives, and accomplishments of the Mexican state in a particularly important area. But at the very center of the Mexican state lies power carefully wrapped in secrecy. In spite of all problems, however, there are many important and new lessons to be learned from a contemporary study of Mexico's political economy. The problems and possibilities of development for Mexico remain one of the fundamental issues of our time. In the summer of 1988 the leader of Mexico's key business association—the Consejo Coordinator Empresarial—claimed that a handful of government functionaries and a group of business leaders ran Mexico. Dependency theory leads social science researchers to look outside of the Mexican social formation for causality while seeing internal matters as largely reducible to effect. This approach has constituted the dominant perceptual framework of social science research in Mexico.