Monday, August 29, 2005

Venezuela, an international media cesspool

Time for a quick IQ test. When you see the picture of this injured Venezuelan on the right, what do you see?
  1. A Chavez supporter
  2. A government 'foe'?
  3. An opposition demonstrator?
The contrast that Venezuela has between the international news scene and the blogging community should tell even the staunchest foreign Chavez suporters, the most biased of reporters, even the imbeciles and morons in between the idiots (1) that some truth most be behind the many, many, many, many, many, many, many opposition (in the broadest of senses) reports. In Francisco Toro's words:
One of the most difficult points to put across to foreign readers, especially those who may be inclined to sympathize with a leftwing regime in a poor country, is the consistently, systematically, unabashedly deceptive nature of the Chavez regime. It's not that regime leaders lie now and then about this or that, it's that lying is their default mode, standard operating procedure, on most issues most of the time...
And add to that, the Venezuelan Catholic Clergy opinion:
“this is the most detestable government in Venezuelan history,” and finally action, the repudiation of the regime by way of Article 350 of the Constitution [should be taken].
And these guys are the true Clergy, the real deal, in direct chain of command from the Pope, not tv-evangelists and opportunists (as the CPM™ would have them portrayed), that just dance for the media like Pat and Jesse. There is a spanish saying: "When the river rumbles, it's because there are stones moving within it," that can be interpreted in this context to mean, that when there are reports of something happening, no matter how ridiculous and unbeleivable, there must be a small sliver of truth in its midst. And when the river is at least as wide as the Iguazu falls, even a tiny little stream coming out of it, would be grounds for a mildly intelligent mind, let's say a moron, to be suspicious. In the US the fallacy of fair and balanced reporting is exulted (2). If you have very dissimilar strategies on two sides, one lies 95% of the time, while the other tells the truth 95% of the time, if you are fair, you cannot portray both sides in a balanced way, and if you are balanced you are obviously not being fair. During the last US presidential campaign a TV news director got extremely criticized, precisely for trying to compensate for such biases from the campaign headquarters, so here, in the US, it's much better and 'cooler' to be 'balanced' than 'fair.' Not to mention that it makes for much better entertainment 'News,' as any WWWF fan would point out. However, in this case, not even 'balanced' becomes a part of the scene!!. So you have to wonder, why is, in the eyes of the media, everything that Chavez does 'good' while anything that the opposition does 'bad'. Why will they change the facts of a story to portray things that way? (and yes, I say what I mean, facts, not 'interpretation of events' (3)). I understand that a particular individual could do that, but representatives of the major news agencies?. Are their editors not aware of this?, are their bosses not aware of what is going on?, even when they have been directly in contact with 'opposition bloggers' that have pointed out the possibility of these biases (and have court cases against them precisely because of these biases)?. Has the international media conglomerate's IQ fallen below the imbecile level already?. Or is it their (not so hidden) agenda to make a Cuba out of Venezuela while dragging the huge majority of Venezuelans (95% if my memory is right) kicking and screaming?. I believe that a case of crimes against humanity could be brought up in international courts to put these media types behind bars. What has the media become, where are the Woodwards and Bernsteins in the bunch?, c'mon, even a moron should be able to figure it out!!!.
After writing this, other events during the day added another dimension to the problem which I want to make explicit. Could it simply be that Chavez's is 'greasing' these reporters?. So DeepThroat's advice becomes vary valid here: Follow the money... Another thing: I realize that I did not put context on the 'test', so let me do it now: Yesterday a pacific opposition demonstration, in an authorized march, with police protection, was attacked when they were close to their final destination. The police did nothing, while 9 people were injured, and then gassed the opposition supporters, not the attackers. Venezuelan news sources correctly reported the events, while the international media's response varied in the way given by options 1 and 2. Pay special attention to the use of the label 'foe,' what do you picture when you see it?. And if your answer is none of the above as it is obviously just an injured individual, congratulations!, you excelled the test, and maybe exposed some of my bias in the process.
  1. I am using the original, somewhat deprecated, meanings here: Idiot, someone with an IQ level below a 2 year old. Imbecile: someone with an IQ level between that of a 2 and an 8 year old moron: someone whose intelligence is between that of an 8 and a 12 year old.
  2. A particular network comes to mind, which, thanks to its biases, is one of the few that seems to be able to compensate enough to shed some light on the truth.
  3. It's somewhat out of character for me to jump to strong conclusions this fast, but given the preponderance of history, evidence, and fairness of the sources, the chances of being wrong on this are near to nil.
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