Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Lou Dobbs Really Does Suck

I have posted before that Lou Dobbs has been a voice of sanity on an otherwise worthless network. Today, however, Lou and his “reporters” nearly caused me to vomit. Following a story on how the US was “failing to prevent leftist governments from taking power in Bolivia, Chile and elsewhere in Latin America,” Lou asked his correspondent if there were any bright spots in American/Latin American relations. The woman reporter said, “Sadly no, to find bright spots in our relations with Latin America you have to go back to the Reagan era.”

For those of you who don’t know, the Reagan era in Latin America was characterized by mass murder, American funded death squads and paramilitaries, and widespread torture – often conducted under the tutelage of CIA agents. Nuns were raped for teaching the poor to read and even an Arch Bishop of the Roman Catholic Church couldn’t escape Washington’s bullets.

From a website I found: “The death toll was staggering -- an estimated 70,000 or more political killings in El Salvador, possibly 20,000 slain from the contra war in Nicaragua, about 200 political "disappearances" in Honduras and some 100,000 people eliminated during a resurgence of political violence in Guatemala.”

That’s what a smug and chuckling Lou Dobbs thinks of as a bright spot. The dark spot? Oh, that’s when the people of Latin America can democratically elect their own governments. You see, that’s not good for business.

2 Thoughts:

Blogger pawlr said...

Yeah this is an appalling consequence of Lou's style of dumbing down his stories to his audience. He (or his producers) try to anticipate an audience's mindset and play to it, for example, catering to xenophobia when discussing immigration issues.

When they set up the segement, they probably figured that the average viewer just hears "leftist governments in Latin America" and they want to play to that "leftists hate America: bad / rightists love America: good" frame in people's minds.

Its pretty sad, really. Its great on those occasions when Lou is shilling for the good cause, but it just goes to show that you live by the pander, die by the pander.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006 1:58:00 PM  
Blogger Demotiki said...

I agree. I was happy with Lou because he took a non-partisan approach to the immigration issue. I happen to agree with him that stopping illegal immigration is very important. We should protect our territorial integrity for two reasons, to keep terrorists from sneaking in, and to protect low skill American jobs so that particularly underprivileged Black Americans can finally get onto the lowest rung of the American-Dream Machine ladder.

My father's generation always thought about "ethnicity" when considering all social phenomena. They lived in the reality of their times. They bonded with those with whom they had sailed from the old world. The school of 'hard-knocks' taught them that blood is thicker than water and that for better or worse like peoples stick together. They knew the background and loyalties of everyone in their universe, and figured these essential truths into their every decision.

Their common sense approach is now called "racism" and is discouraged. To some extent, our modern approach may inoculate us from many of the dangers of being a polyglot empire, and for that I welcome it. But the sensitivity of the greatest generation also granted wisdom when it came to assessments of basic fairness. They would have understood how the influx of Mexican labor has cut the throat of low-skilled African-American laborers. In our current economy, the lowest skilled, lowest educated demographic is the urban uneducated African-American. Outsourcing (another Lou Dobbs favorite) and illegal immigration have destroyed the market for low-skill employees in today’s economy. My father’s generation would have realized the real effect of illegal immigration and outsourcing is the destruction of economic potential for many urban blacks. My father for one would have stood by his fellow American.

We need rational debate on these issues. I admired Lou Dobbs for talking some sense, "why have laws if we don't intend to enforce them?" But, to ignore the terrible tragedies that plagued Latin America during the 1980s is unconscionable. The litany of crimes committed by Reagan in the 1980s is far too extensive to address here, but suffice it to say that the Reagan era was the darkest time for Latin America in ages. We can find some solace in the fact Chile has just elected a socialist agnostic woman as president. How far they are ahead of us!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006 8:11:00 PM  

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