Author: emanreus

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Post time 2018-7-11 13:12:54 |Display all floors
seneca Post time: 2018-7-11 12:07
Well, Germans are heroes. They save the lives of foreigners oppressed and mistreated by their own  ...

re:  "Well, Germans are heroes. They save the lives of foreigners oppressed and mistreated by their own governments."

  While Roma might have a hard time ‘integrating’ into Germany’s society and school system, Germans are not making the process any easier: Markovic recalls that finding a space for his café/theater wasn’t easy. “We said we were Roma. ‘Roma?’ they said. ‘You mean you come from Rome?’ ‘No, like Gypsies,’ we said. ‘Zigeuner’. ‘Oh, no, please – we have enough problems as it is.’”

Perhaps you're old enough to remember Sarkozy’s at the center of a scandal over the systematic and accelerating deportation of Roma back to their home countries.
  You're just full of total nonsense...

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Post time 2018-7-13 17:06:11 |Display all floors
On Independence Day, Argentines mobilized against US military base and IMF deal.
  There is massive public anger against the deal with the IMF as many remember the earlier disastrous intervention of the organization in the country.
   On the occasion of the Argentine Independence Day, the residents of Neuquén, a city in Patagonia, mobilized against the construction of a US military base in the city, and in Buenos Aires against the government’s 50 billion dollars deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

    If this project is concretized, as far as the Pentagon [United States Department of Defense] is concerned, it would be a qualitative leap in its geopolitical presence in the Patagonia region of Argentina, a strategic territory that is very rich in natural resources. A number of transnational extractive firms also operate in the area. The protest has been called for by the multisectoral “No to the Yankee base in Neuquén”, which brings together a large number of organizations and people’s movements of the region.
            
As is usual in these types of agreements, the country that requests the IMF’s ‘assistance’, gives up significant amount of independence (political, economical and social) so as to benefit the ‘markets’, which is a euphemism for those who control financial capital through the banks and international investment funds.
  
           In the coming days, another mobilization will be carried out in defence of the country’s sovereignty on the occasion of the G20 meeting of Finance Ministers, which will be held in Argentina from July 19 to 22, 2018.

                   Previous agreements establish the installation of a military base in Ushuaia, disguised as a scientific base, and has as its objective the Antartida, the greatest reserve of frozen fresh water in the world...


           The US also establish the installation of a base in the Triple Frontier, in Misiones, where the Guarani Aquifer is located beneath the surface of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay, is the second largest known aquifer system in the world and is an important source of fresh water  with a volume of about 40,000 cubic kilometres                     


       Remember Ghadaffii, the ousted leader of Libya's  aquifer and  'Great Man-Made River project'!








   


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Post time 2018-7-13 18:20:31 |Display all floors
Media corruption that has succeeded in hanging the “dictatorship” label on Venezuela
   
    MacLeod's book ( Published  6 July 2018)   makes a concise and well-argued case against media corruption that has succeeded in hanging the “dictatorship” label on Venezuela, writes Joe Emersberger.
   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 For almost 20 years, the U.S. government has been trying to overthrow Venezuela’s government, and establishment media outlets (state, corporate and some nonprofit) throughout the Americas and Europe have been bending over backwards to help the United States do it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Rare exceptions to this over the last two decades would be found in the state media in some countries that are not hostile to Venezuela, like the ALBA block. Small independent outlets like VenezuelAnalysis.com also offered alternatives. In the U.S. and U.K. establishment media, you are way more likely to see a defense of Saudi Arabia’s dictatorship than of Venezuela’s democratically elected government. Any defense of Venezuela’s government will provoke vilification and ridicule, so both Alan MacLeod and his publisher (Routledge) deserve very high praise for producing the book 'Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting.' It took real political courage. (Disclosure: MacLeod is a contributor to FAIR.org, as am I.)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 MacLeod’s approach was to assess 501 articles (news reports and opinion pieces) about Venezuela that appeared in the US and UK newspapers during key periods since Hugo Chávez was first elected Venezuelan president in 1998. Chávez died in March 2013, and his vice president, Nicolas Maduro, was elected president a month later. Maduro was just re-elected to a second six-year term on May 20. The periods of peak interest in Venezuela that MacLeod examined involved the first election of Chávez in 1998, the US-backed military coup that briefly ousted Chávez in April of 2002, the death of Chávez in 2013 and the violent opposition protests in 2014.



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Post time 2018-7-13 18:21:46 |Display all floors
part 2:
MacLeod notes that U.S. government funding to the Venezuelan opposition spiked just before the 2002 coup, and then increased again afterwards. What would happen to a foreign government that conceded (as the U.S. State Department’s Office of the Inspector General did regarding Venezuela) that it funded and trained groups involved with violently ousting the U.S. government?

MacLeod shows that, in bold defiance of the facts, the U.S. media usually treated U.S. involvement in the coup as a conspiracy theory, on those rare occasions when U.S. involvement was discussed at all. Only 10 percent of the articles MacLeod sampled in U.S. media even mentioned potential U.S. involvement in the coup. Thirty-nine percent did in U.K. media, but, according to MacLeod, “only the Guardian presented U.S. involvement as a strong possibility.”

As somebody who regularly reads Venezuelan newspapers and watches its news and political programs, I thought the most powerful evidence MacLeod provided of Western media dishonesty was a chart showing how Venezuela’s media system has been depicted from 1998–2014. Of the 166 articles in MacLeod’s sample that described the state of Venezuela’s media, he classified 100 percent of them as spreading a “caged” characterization: the outlandish story that the Chavez and Maduro governments dominate the media, or have otherwise used coercion to practically silence aggressive criticism.

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Post time 2018-7-13 18:23:30 |Display all floors
part 3:
   There is a bit of subjectivity involved in classifying articles in a sample like MacLeod’s. From my own very close reading of U.S. and U.K. Venezuela coverage over the years, I’m sure one could quibble that a few articles within MacLeod’s sample contradict the “caged” story; perhaps reducing the percentage to 95 percent, but that would hardly assail his conclusion. It is truly stunning that Western journalists can’t be relied on to accurately report the content of Venezuelan newspapers and TV. How hard is it to watch TV and read newspapers, and notice that the government is being constantly blasted by its opponents? No background in economics or any type of esoterica is required to do that much—simply a lack of extreme partisanship and a minimal level of honesty.

MacLeod acknowledges that the Carter Center has refuted a few big lies about the Venezuelan government, including the one about government critics being shut out of Venezuela’s media, but he also reminds us that a week after the perpetrators of the 2002 coup thanked Venezuela’s private media for their help installing a dictatorship, Jennifer McCoy (America director for the Carter Center at the time) wrote an op-ed for the New York Times (4/18/02) in which she said that the “Chavez regime” had been “threatening the country’s democratic system of checks and balances and freedom of expression of its citizens.” Venezuelan democracy deserved much better “allies.” The Carter Center may have sparkled at times compared to the rest of the U.S. establishment, but it’s a very filthy establishment.

Drawing from the work of Ed Herman and Noam Chomsky, MacLeod provides a structural analysis of why coverage of Venezuela has been so terrible. Corporate journalists, with rare exceptions, reflexively dismiss common-sense analysis of their industry. Chomsky and Herman therefore resorted to proving various common-sense propositions, identifying “filters” that distort news coverage in ways that serve the rich and powerful. For example, it matters who pays the bills. (In other news, water is wet.) Corporate-owned, ad-dependent media will tend to serve the agenda of wealthy owners and corporate customers who provide the bulk of the ad dollars. Such media will usually hire and promote people whose worldview is compatible with the arrangement. That greatly reduces the need for heavy-handed bullying to enforce an editorial line.

Business pressures also drive media outlets to cuts costs, and therefore rely on governments and big corporate outfits as cheap and readily available sources. Losing “access” by alienating powerful sources therefore becomes expensive, even before you consider other forms of flak that powerful people can apply.

Beyond the general “filters” that Chomsky and Herman identified, MacLeod described others that are specific to Venezuela.  MacLeod pointed to massive cuts to newsroom budgets, leading to reliance on local stringers. Local journalists recruited from highly adversarial Venezuelan opposition-aligned press, leading to a situation where Venezuelan opposition ideas and talking points have their amplitude magnified. Anti-government activists producing supposedly objective news content for Western media.

He also explained that journalists are overwhelmingly housed in the wealthy Chacao district of Eastern Caracas… This, combined with concerns over crime, creates a situation where journalists inordinately spend their work and leisure time in an opposition bastion. Hence, it can appear to a journalist that “everyone” has a negative opinion about the government.

I wish MacLeod had more forcefully stressed another factor explaining why Venezuela reporting is so bad: impunity. A structural analysis explains why biased coverage results even if journalists are usually honest, but being able to say anything you want about an adversary without having to worry about being refuted (and discredited) encourages dishonesty. Media bias in Venezuela’s case could more appropriately be called media corruption.

In 2015, one of MacLeod's interviewees, the former Caracas-based journalist Girish Gupta, wrote (Reuters, 8/5/15) that 1.5 million Venezuelans had left the country since Hugo Chavez first took office in 1999, according to “Caracas-based sociologist Tomas Paez, who has published papers and books on migration.” According to UN population figures, about 320,000 had left over that period: about one fifth the number Páez estimated.

Paez is a fiercely anti-Chavista academic who signed a letter published in a Venezuelan newspaper (as a quarter-page ad) that welcomed the dictatorship that briefly replaced Chavez during the 2002 coup. Gupta’s response to my emails explaining why Paez’s figure was very far-fetched, and that he should not be presented as a neutral expert, was that he would no longer read my emails. Paez has since been cited as a neutral expert on migration by Reuters, the New York Times and Financial Times.

MacLeod notes that the Venezuelan government has become practically inaccessible as a source for corporate journalists, but the same is often true for independent journalists in Venezuela, and grassroots supporters of the government. I’ve personally tried to get some of them to meet a Caracas-based corporate journalist whose integrity I trusted, but they declined. The assumption was that even if the journalist didn’t set out to write a dishonest hit piece, the editors would make it one (or simply kill the piece)—an assumption that I can’t blame them for making.

While MacLeod could have been even harsher, his book makes a concise and well-argued case against media corruption that has succeeded in hanging the “dictatorship” label on Venezuela—and therefore allowed the country to be targeted for U.S.-led economic strangulation, and even military threats by the Trump administration.

Joe Emersberger is a writer based in Canada whose work has also appeared in ZNet and Counterpunch.

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Post time 2018-7-13 18:28:24 |Display all floors
part 2:
  There is a bit of subjectivity involved in classifying articles in a sample like MacLeod’s. From my own very close reading of U.S. and U.K. Venezuela coverage over the years, I’m sure one could quibble that a few articles within MacLeod’s sample contradict the “caged” story; perhaps reducing the percentage to 95 percent, but that would hardly assail his conclusion. It is truly stunning that Western journalists can’t be relied on to accurately report the content of Venezuelan newspapers and TV. How hard is it to watch TV and read newspapers, and notice that the government is being constantly blasted by its opponents? No background in economics or any type of esoterica is required to do that much—simply a lack of extreme partisanship and a minimal level of honesty.

MacLeod acknowledges that the Carter Center has refuted a few big lies about the Venezuelan government, including the one about government critics being shut out of Venezuela’s media, but he also reminds us that a week after the perpetrators of the 2002 coup thanked Venezuela’s private media for their help installing a dictatorship, Jennifer McCoy (America director for the Carter Center at the time) wrote an op-ed for the New York Times (4/18/02) in which she said that the “Chavez regime” had been “threatening the country’s democratic system of checks and balances and freedom of expression of its citizens.” Venezuelan democracy deserved much better “allies.” The Carter Center may have sparkled at times compared to the rest of the U.S. establishment, but it’s a very filthy establishment.

Drawing from the work of Ed Herman and Noam Chomsky, MacLeod provides a structural analysis of why coverage of Venezuela has been so terrible. Corporate journalists, with rare exceptions, reflexively dismiss common-sense analysis of their industry. Chomsky and Herman therefore resorted to proving various common-sense propositions, identifying “filters” that distort news coverage in ways that serve the rich and powerful. For example, it matters who pays the bills. (In other news, water is wet.) Corporate-owned, ad-dependent media will tend to serve the agenda of wealthy owners and corporate customers who provide the bulk of the ad dollars. Such media will usually hire and promote people whose worldview is compatible with the arrangement. That greatly reduces the need for heavy-handed bullying to enforce an editorial line.

Business pressures also drive media outlets to cuts costs, and therefore rely on governments and big corporate outfits as cheap and readily available sources. Losing “access” by alienating powerful sources therefore becomes expensive, even before you consider other forms of flak that powerful people can apply.

Beyond the general “filters” that Chomsky and Herman identified, MacLeod described others that are specific to Venezuela.  MacLeod pointed to massive cuts to newsroom budgets, leading to reliance on local stringers. Local journalists recruited from highly adversarial Venezuelan opposition-aligned press, leading to a situation where Venezuelan opposition ideas and talking points have their amplitude magnified. Anti-government activists producing supposedly objective news content for Western media.

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Post time 2018-7-13 18:29:13 |Display all floors
part 3:
  He also explained that journalists are overwhelmingly housed in the wealthy Chacao district of Eastern Caracas… This, combined with concerns over crime, creates a situation where journalists inordinately spend their work and leisure time in an opposition bastion. Hence, it can appear to a journalist that “everyone” has a negative opinion about the government.

I wish MacLeod had more forcefully stressed another factor explaining why Venezuela reporting is so bad: impunity. A structural analysis explains why biased coverage results even if journalists are usually honest, but being able to say anything you want about an adversary without having to worry about being refuted (and discredited) encourages dishonesty. Media bias in Venezuela’s case could more appropriately be called media corruption.

In 2015, one of MacLeod's interviewees, the former Caracas-based journalist Girish Gupta, wrote (Reuters, 8/5/15) that 1.5 million Venezuelans had left the country since Hugo Chavez first took office in 1999, according to “Caracas-based sociologist Tomas Paez, who has published papers and books on migration.” According to UN population figures, about 320,000 had left over that period: about one fifth the number Páez estimated.

Paez is a fiercely anti-Chavista academic who signed a letter published in a Venezuelan newspaper (as a quarter-page ad) that welcomed the dictatorship that briefly replaced Chavez during the 2002 coup. Gupta’s response to my emails explaining why Paez’s figure was very far-fetched, and that he should not be presented as a neutral expert, was that he would no longer read my emails. Paez has since been cited as a neutral expert on migration by Reuters, the New York Times and Financial Times.

MacLeod notes that the Venezuelan government has become practically inaccessible as a source for corporate journalists, but the same is often true for independent journalists in Venezuela, and grassroots supporters of the government. I’ve personally tried to get some of them to meet a Caracas-based corporate journalist whose integrity I trusted, but they declined. The assumption was that even if the journalist didn’t set out to write a dishonest hit piece, the editors would make it one (or simply kill the piece)—an assumption that I can’t blame them for making.

While MacLeod could have been even harsher, his book makes a concise and well-argued case against media corruption that has succeeded in hanging the “dictatorship” label on Venezuela—and therefore allowed the country to be targeted for U.S.-led economic strangulation, and even military threats by the Trump administration.

Joe Emersberger is a writer based in Canada whose work has also appeared in ZNet and Counterpunch.

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