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I sincerely wish that this diary would put the "Chavez shut down the free press" fake debate to rest. There is a difference between free over-the-air broadcast stations and private media paid for by a subscriber. On my CABLE stations I can watch Glenn "everything Obama does is just like Hitler told him to" Beck on Fox, per Rupert Murdoch's wishes. More power to him, literally. But on broadcast TV my local Fox station DOES NOT play that crap and (hopefully) would get its license pulled by the FCC. Let me make it simplier for those still confused. I can watch boobies on cable but not on broadcast TV. There are legitimate reasons for that. So imagine if Beck, Limbaugh and O'Really were on FCC regulated "digital bunny ears" TV, on three out of the four broadcast stations. You think someone would start a letter writing campaign here on Kos asking them to take those programs off the air and only allow them on CABLE? I would friggin hope so. Here's the reality about that "press blackout" in Venezuela. The "Chavez is a dictator that stopped the freedom of the press" crowd really needs to follow me below ...

You and I own the PUBLIC airwaves, comrade. We pay taxes so the FCC directs the public airwaves to serve our interests, not Rupert Murdoch's or BP's interests. Call it socialism and cry about it, but I like it and a majority of voters like it too. Oh, and the Constitution agrees.  

The privately run, privately paid for CABLE stations laid down these things called "cable" (pretty sure thats where Cable got it's name, btw) and big corporations promote their agenda on that medium. They own it and if you pay for it (not through taxes, but out of your pocket, btw) they can put whatever they want on their "property". And the Constitution and a majority of people agree with that, as do I.

Now imagine that some big business anti-progressive rightwinger selectively edited a video that played over and over and over and over on the PUBLIC airwaves that distorted what was really happening in our country. The video projects the idea that a New Black Panther party is given free reign to terrorize white voters in the 2012 elections by a Kenyan Muslim who stole our election through ACORN and illegal aliens dressed like pimps. Over and over and over again this is playing on free TV, with the movie Red Dawn serving as break from the constant fear mongering. You laughing? Death panels are now being, per local stations, formed by this treasonous group and US senators and military leaders are going on publicly owned TV and confirming these reports, which are on three out of four stations. Funny stuff, huh?  

I know that seems like a really radical stretch of the imagination to some, but it really isn't. It really isn't. In a country where a significant portion of the population believes the Earth is a only few thousand years old, this should not be a stretch of the imagination.  From the country that made Independence Day, a blockbuster movie based on the premise that someone downloaded a computer virus into a vastly superior alien race's operating system to save the planet, this should not be a stretch of the imagination. I'm sorry to say this folks, but this site's followers are waaaay smarter than the average American. I live in Texas (Austin, thank FSM) and you have no idea the level of political ignorance I observe.

In fact, the same US military leaders supporting this coup d'état were trained in the same country approving the coup, lets call it the "School of Venezuela". I sincerely hope that the anti Chavez crowd gets the irony.
And the big businesses supporting this bizarre narrative are also tied to Venezuela's oil interests. All the publicly owned TV stations (again, our airwaves, our taxes, our FCC) are playing footage of the "documentary" Camp FEMA telling all white christian gun owning Ron Paul supporters that they are rounding up the guns and taking away their bibles, putting them into concentration camps. And their flouridating the water to sterilize us.  

I know it sounds like a kooky conspiracy theory, but apparently it sells like shiny gold coins do on talk radio.

In a few days scared, angry, gun toting idiots are taking to the streets and wanting their country back and the Kenyan Muslim terrorist out of "their" White House.
A counter protest, comprised of people who get their information from somewhere other than the free TV come out to give a logical fact based detailed rebuttal on...poster board signs? Notice how once public TV says the same b.s. as privately owned TV there are few outlets that you could point to that compare in hysteria generating mediums. What? Magazines? Even book publishers, mostly dominated by big multinationals, couldn't print up a counter argument to debunk the crap fast enough. And books really don't get people energized like video clips played over and over and over and over, do they? Are you going to hand over your laptop for a Tea bagger, in a street protest, to read a point by point detailed rebuttal while you hold his AR15, you hippy? Get real.

During one of the protests, a select squad of military snipers trained by the "School of Venezuela" takes to the roof and fires at the Tea Baggers, proving their worst fears. Later than night, on public TV, footage is shown over and over and over again portraying the dirty Muslim loving hippies as the real trained snipers trying to kill all the white Christian capitalists.  

If you think that notion is a stretch of the imagination to Tea Baggers, allow me to enlighten you on reality. They believe it already. Just listen to Alex Jones' broadcasts, which are easily downloaded on prisonplanet.com. Alex Jones literally talks about how the Democrats are going to take our guns away by giving the illegal aliens the right to vote and then end the 2nd amendement. That narrative is already forming in the minds of millions of right wingers all over this country.

So then President Obama gets overthrown in a media, military and business coup d'état, supported by a foreign imperialist country that has vested interests in reversing his policies.

President Palin's Whiter House now runs the show, broadcasting their glorious free market theocracy on all the TV stations, while cable says that she needs to push harder and offers brilliant suggestions.

Fortunately a mass of people surround the uber-White House and force her to leave through the underground tunnel. The democratically elected real President is restored.

Now you say "how dare President Obama yank the FCC license of those publicly owned stations that supported the coup d'état?  
Are you serious?
Why have an FCC?
The wealthy elite who run those stations are free to go to cable. Here's another thing to consider, that in a country that suffers from vast economic disparity, the poor huddled masses yearning to be free are not paying for cable, they are watching free broadcast TV, if they still have electricity.  

This scenario is what happened to Hugo Chavez before the coup d'état. Afterwords, he didn't kill the irresponsible elites that promoted the fake video clips showing the pro Chavez crowd supposedly firing on the anti Chavez crowd. The military leaders responsible were trained at the School of Americas, which changed it's name to WHINSEC due to the bad publicity coming out about all of it's actions. The American tax payer paid for the equavalent of Venezualian Tea Baggers to start up a bunch of false propaganda. The US doesn't even allow that to happen here. Imagine if Hamas (or any other manufactured "enemy" of America) poured millions into MoveOn or ACORN. The MSM would absolutely flip out and call for public floggings.  

Before Hugo Chavez was overthrown the public airwaves were filled with racist crap, calling him a "monkey". You'd like that being said about President Obama? You would have no problem renewing their FCC license? Wow, talk about a limited and simplistic concept of "freedom of the press". Go read some early quotes from our founding fathers, they really didn't dig slander and libel in the press and specifically cited that as the limits to the press' freedom.

So here are the rebuttals that I expect to this reality. "Prove that any of this happened" or "How do you know that this is the case?" and "So therefore you agree with every other policy of Hugo Chavez?".

The documents detailing the US support for the coup d'état are now out in the open, and have been for 6 years. If you're six years late in finding this out, then you are in little position to "inform" or "educate" me about what happened in the US backed coup of the democratically elected Chavez.

In April 2002 two SOA graduates, Army Commander in Chief Efrain Vasquez and General Ramirez Poveda, helped lead a failed coup in Venezuela. Additionally, Otto Reich, who was named to the "new" school’s Board of Visitors, met with the generals in the months preceding the coup. During the coup Reich advised business leader Pedro Carmona, who subsequently seized the presidency

link here  

But I know the detractors want more. I bet I would have to link every station's time and place, with the specific clips translated in english, to prove they were racist and tried to forment a violent overthrow.  
Google "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" and watch a movie you intellectually lazy bum. Get a clue. I handed a dozen to you to follow yourself. Educate yourself on what you are talking about, otherwise I call it "talking out your ass".  

Let me add another personal experience. I randomly attend the Tea Party conspiracist meetings to check in on the patients and at one of their local hangouts, Brave New Books on "the drag" in Austin, they promote your anti Chavez ignorance in the exact same terms. So be proud and say it loud, that you agree with the the Tea bagging crowd when it comes to President Hugo Chavez. Also, you probably wouldn't yank Andrew Brightfarts (sp) race baiting TV station's FCC license after he helped put in President Palin in a violent overthrow. And the "freedom of the press" is a simplistic term, to you, not me, that means all cable is the the same as public airwaves and that any violent race-baiting imperialistic slander is fair play.

So I'm guessing a change of subject will be a main defense of the anti Hugo Chavez crowd. "But he is egotistical and plays hour long speeches on TV!!". You yourself could apparently use a few hours a day of Chomsky and Robert McChesney with another hour of Democracy Now added. I regularly read or listen to all three, that's why I know more about this than you. I listen to the voices of the dispossed and disenfranchised from all over the world, on the regular, do you? I listen to the "disenfranchised" Tea Baggers here in Texas, eventhough their gripes are bs. If you don't, then it seems pretty weak for you to be educating me about your "concern" for the poor people of Venezuela.

This diary deals with the simple subject of pulling the publicly controlled license of the irresponsible news outlets that formented a coup d'état against democratically elected Hugo Chavez. Apparently some people here have a problem with that and can see no relation to what happens on TV here. I had to give the context of why that was a justified response, but if the arguement now wants to shift to Columbian paramilitaries in Venezuela, or reducing rates of poverty or the land reform issue, that is for another diary of considerable length. In short, I'm not wasting my time dealing with those subjects in the comments section.

Originally posted to thoreau247365 on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:01 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Think We Have a Free Press in U.S.? Delusional. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Radical def, Anak

      Ninety percent of the U.S. media is owned by the same mega-corporations which are making huge profits from the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and they hope, Iran, not to mention the 800 U.S. military bases around the world where the Neo-Conservative Project for a New American Century's plan for "total world dominance" (by the U.S. of course) is being put in place.

      Why is the U.S. opening 7 new military bases in Colombia, one right on the Venezuelan border?  Because, according to the Pentagon's budget justification for the project, it was assure the U.S.'s capacity to dominate all of South and Central America.  When that Obama administration document was publicize, it was summarily redacted to remove that offending language.

      Why is President Chavez being constantly demonized by the U.S. State Department and the U.S. press?  Look who owns the U.S. government and the U.S. press, the big corporations who shutter at the notion that the American people might demand that same human social programs that Chavez has created in Venezuela.  Free medical, free education to the doctoral level, subsidized housing and food, real demoscracy at every level of the society?  Those are anathma to the rich corporations and their CEO's who really call the shots in the U.S.

      In Venezuela, local community groups are being assisted to form their own local radio stations, while privately owned corporate stations are being required to follow the law and not advocate the violent over-throw of the democratically elected president. They have made open calls for his assassination. Would the FCC allow that?  Not if there was a Republican president in office.

      We, the American people, have been duped into believing we have a free press.  It's only free to those who have millions of dollars to start one, who have the millions of dollars needed to buy our congressional reps and senators. How many poor people serve in the U.S. Senate?
      None.  Why are there none? Because it takes millions and millions of dollars to run for the Senate.  Why?  Because media advertising is so very expensive and the rich corporate owners of the U.S. media set the prices and the policies about who can buy their advertising.  Only the very wealthy can even ask for votes in this country.

      We have to de-concentrate the media by devesting it from the control of the super-rich Republicans who determine our news, our thoughts and our votes.

      Chavez is fighting back against the wealthy corporate owners in Venezuela who are trying to bring down his government, destroy his social programs and restore the tiny minority of oligarchs to their previous power. We should support him and do the same in the U.S.

      Above all, we must fight to protect the independence of the internet, which is the only way any of us here at dailykos can know the truth about what is going on in our "free press" country.  We certainly don't learn the truth from our right-wing controlled, very un-free media.

      Thanks for writing this post.  It is very much needed.

      Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support single-payer health care and unions.

      by Justina on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 12:27:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Freedom of the press (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greatdarkspot, Siri

    If someone broke the law by participating in a coup attempt they can be arrested and charged, if there is proof. That includes executives and owners of TV stations.

    However shutting down TV stations or newspapers has no justification in a democracy. Period. Who is to judge what speech is allowed and when? You can't  just support the democratic principles that are convenient to you.

    •  License Not Re-newed for Violating Laws. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Anorish, Radical def, Anak

      The Chavez government didn't shut down the TV station, its license expired and the equivalent of our FCC refused to re-new it because the station had violated numerous laws, including calling for violent over-throw of government and assassination of president.  They also illegally showed cigarette and liquor ads and broadcast sexual material during children's viewing hours.

      Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support single-payer health care and unions.

      by Justina on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 01:03:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I have to be careful when arguing (0+ / 0-)

    with Republicans over Chavez. If you say anything in defense (say, oh.. he's not a dictator, he was elected for example) they paint you as a lock-step sympathizer. Which I am not.

    Huh, that's weird. -4.48, -4.56

    by pseudopod on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:17:40 AM PDT

  •  Unfortunately, here's where you're wrong (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Riff, pseudopod

    I'm sorry to say this folks, but this site's followers are waaaay smarter than the average American.

    I'm sorry to say this folks, but this site has it's equal share of morons. Yes, I believe there might be a higher-than-average percentage of more informed people, but I believe that number draws more from the the median than the bottom.

    As a Chomsky fan, I enjoyed your allegory. I would argue that you do in fact need to present some of the evidence you have taken for granted, per my snarky beginning to this comment. Sometimes, you have to educate before you argue, and I think this is one case.

    As for the justification for shutting down the press, it is an extraordinary measure requiring extraordinary proof.

    The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

    by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:17:52 AM PDT

  •  Huh? (0+ / 0-)

    So imagine if Beck, Limbaugh and O'Really were on FCC regulated "digital bunny ears" TV, on three out of the four broadcast stations. You think someone would start a letter writing campaign here on Kos asking them to take those programs off the air and only allow them on CABLE? I would friggin hope so.

    I sincerely hope they wouldn't. Freedom of the press is freedom of the press, period. We have no right to tell them what they can and can't broadcast, so long as it's within the bounds of non-obscenity.

    Not to mention, those three are already on three out of four broadcast talk radio stations.

    What have you done for DC statehood today? Call your Rep and Senators and demand action.

    by mistersite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:18:24 AM PDT

    •  Er, not exactly (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Justina, Radical def, Anak

      The diarist is talking about the public airwaves. As the public, we damn well do and should have the right to "tell them what they can and can't broadcast". We used to have equal time laws for this very purpose...

      The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

      by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:23:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And we got rid of those laws... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        homunq

        ...I think for better, not for worse.

        I do think we need to be more serious about enforcing the "public good" portion of FCC licenses - particularly in limiting media ownership and getting rid of the massive violence to which our children and adults are exposed on broadcast television - but "equal time" laws which enforce an even division of opinions on station-owners aren't a good way to go about evening out the political discourse.

        What have you done for DC statehood today? Call your Rep and Senators and demand action.

        by mistersite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:27:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yikes (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Radical def, Siri

          We will have to agree to disagree, then.

          I simply cannot ever bring myself to relinquish the idea that I have the right to information, and not propaganda.

          The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

          by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:30:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  From a classical liberal sense... (0+ / 0-)

            ...you don't have a right to anything that produces an obligation on someone else.

            You don't have the right to "information, not propaganda" (presuming, of course, that such a thing as non-propagandistic information exists, a claim I would strongly dispute).

            Press-holders have the right to print, broadcast, or publish whatever they want to print, broadcast, or publish.

            Speakers have the right to say what they want to say.

            Nobody is under any obligation to ensure that what is produced by press-holders and speakers is honest, objective (objectivity isn't possible), or true (truth doesn't exist). And I really don't want government to be in the business of deciding what press-holders or speakers get to continue publishing, broadcasting, or speaking based on a government-determined standard of "truth."

            Just keep this in mind: Any weapon that can be used against them, they can use against us. If we give ourselves the tools to shut down Fox, they'll use those same tools to shut down the whole "liberal media" when the pendulum swings and they come back into power. I think it's best to keep that weapon out of everyone's hands.

            What have you done for DC statehood today? Call your Rep and Senators and demand action.

            by mistersite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:36:19 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Not interested in shutting down Fox (0+ / 0-)

              The public airwaves are called that because they are supposed to be owned by the public.

              Press-holders have the right to print, broadcast, or publish whatever they want to print, broadcast, or publish.

              And they therefore have the responsibility to use at least a portion of what they have in the public interest. Freedom doesn't mean "do whatever you want to do".

              But if the above quote is true, then I again do and should have the right to demand things like the Fairness Doctrine, since we are the press-holders for the broadcast channels.

              ...you don't have a right to anything that produces an obligation on someone else.

              This is just plain false. I have the right to fair and equal treatment under the law, obliging employers, law enforcement, my neighbor, etc. I have the right to face my accuser. I have the right to - oh well, I could go on like this forever, but the point is: Rights are there to require obligation by those who might not otherwise oblige.

              Leaving aside the semantic debate, I will say this: I do and should demand that my airwaves not be used to run unedited corporate press releases on news programs as if they are news, with no rebuttal or discussion. I am obviously not a classic liberal, nor will I ever be, so long as this sort of this is allowed and supported.

              The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

              by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:52:21 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Also, this ridiculous statement: (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Samulayo, Riff, Utahrd, nickrud

    Go read some early quotes from our founding fathers, they really didn't dig slander and libel in the press and specifically cited that as the limits to the press' freedom.

    The one Founding Father who actually considered that "the limits to the press' [sic] freedom" was John Adams, and the result was the Alien and Sedition Acts - which stand among the most odious anti-free-speech legislation in American history.

    The other Founding Fathers - particularly Madison, Jefferson, Franklin, and Hamilton - only considered press attacks "the limits to the press' [sic] freedom" when they were attacking them. When it was their papers attacking their political opponents, they considered it perfectly okay.

    Take a look at the press back in the days of the Founding Fathers; it makes even the most vile things said by Fox News seem downright even-keeled and fair in comparison.

    What have you done for DC statehood today? Call your Rep and Senators and demand action.

    by mistersite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:23:21 AM PDT

    •  Yep (0+ / 0-)

      Take a look at the press back in the days of the Founding Fathers; it makes even the most vile things said by Fox News seem downright even-keeled and fair in comparison.

      This is completely true. And it continued (Remember the Maine!) to this day.

      Though I would argue that the FF had a little more to say about a free press than what you've presented, even if it was hypocritical.

      The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

      by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 12:02:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hmm . . . I'm not surprised to see apologia (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Samulayo, Riff, greatdarkspot, Utahrd, Siri

    for Chavez shutting down opposition media, given that the calls to do the same thing to Fox News, Limbaugh, et. al., are getting louder from our our own authoritarian left . . .

    From the Journolist emails

    Jonathan Zasloff -- UCLA Law Professor:

    "Is there any reason that the FCC couldn't simply pull [Fox's] broadcasting permit once it expires?"

    http://dailycaller.com/...

    Yeah, professor Zasloff -- because as the diarist points out, Fox News doesn't have a broadcasting permit, only their local affiliates do.

    But the larger point remains: you seem to draw some kind of line between cable and broadcast, and everything's OK on cable, and but the government can restrict speech based on content on broadcast, but I don't see it. Would you be OK with the reverse: would it be OK for a President Palin to decide that CBS and Katie Couric's broadcast license should be pulled, even though we'd still have MSNBC?

    •  I fail to see any legitimate rationale... (0+ / 0-)

      ...for allowing any "freedom" to lie, slander and deliberately misrepresent, especially for the purpose of traitorous sedition, to thwart democracy, nor even merely to generate private profit, against the public interest..."over the air", OR on cable.

      FUCK the "founding fathers", and what they might have thought or intended...  They were a bunch of racist, sexist, rich bastards, who sought to allow only their own kind to vote, from the get go.

      Cable installation, btw, has not occurred without very substantial government subsidy, granting of "rights of way", etc. etc., which does contracturally obligate them to comply with government regulation.  But this is irrelevant, really.  Even if it were completely independent private enterprise (which it is not), that does not give it the "freedom" to run amok, against the public interest.

      Obviously, such determinations should be made in a formal, legal, democratic manner, and not by mere arbitrary capricious dictatorial whim of unelected super-rich elitist capitalist pigs, as is now the case in the US.

      Oh, and btw, just a heads up...the right will never again seize the power in this country, once we have more substantially wrested it from their greedy (cold, dead, if necessary) hands.

      We are NOT going back.

      Media reform will be one of the first items on the agenda, once we have a substantial progressive majority in the House and Senate...which could be as soon as this year, and will almost certainly occur after 2012.

      The right will certainly do everything in their considerable remaining power to prevent that, or to overthrow that, but they will fail, and will be absolutely crushed, purged and suppressed, democratically, electorally...

      Better make sure you're on the correct side, because it's going to be hell for the right, in the future.  We've had enough of their shit, and the people of this great nation are not going to stand for it, ever again.

      On the other hand, life will be better for everyone, including those who now embrace and support the rightwing line, once the new green paradigm begins to more substantially role out and they see how much it improves the lives of their families.

      Bring the Better Democrats!

      All Out for 2010 and 2012!

      All Power to the People!

      "...a printing press is worth 10,000 rifles..." Ho Chi Minh

      by Radical def on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 02:04:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There seem to be a lot of Chavez (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    homunq, Riff, greatdarkspot

    diaries popping up lately. So I did some digging and found this very interesting.

    Organization of American States – Inter-American Commission on Human Rights December 2009 report on Democracy and Human Rights in Venezuela

    http://cidh.org/...

    The IACHR again states that because of their extreme vagueness, the severity of the associated punishments, and the fact that their enforcement is the responsibility of a body that depends directly on the executive branch, the provisions of the Law on Social Responsibility in Radio and Television dealing with accusations of incitement may lead to arbitrary decisions that censor or impose a subsequent disproportionate penalty on citizens or the media for simply expressing criticisms or dissent that may be disturbing to public officials temporarily holding office in the enforcement agency.

    The Commission’s report establishes that Venezuela lacks the conditions necessary for human rights defenders and journalists to carry out their work freely. The IACHR also detects the existence of a pattern of impunity in cases of violence, which particularly affects media workers, human rights defenders, trade unionists, participants in public demonstration, people held in custody, campesinos (small-scale and subsistence farmers), indigenous people, and women.

    I don't believe the Chavez approach will solve our problems. Actually this is precisely what we need to fight against.

    "Compassion is the radicalism of our time." -- Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama

    by Siri on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:42:20 AM PDT

  •  May I remind you in 2004, George W. Bush was (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greatdarkspot

    democratically elected (I have my doubts about 2000), so was Tricky Dick Nixon (twice). The fact that Hugo Chavez was democratically elected does not mean jack shit to me. I think he's an asshole, period. It is my natural law right to think for myself and not agree with your pro-Chavez diary trying to lay some bullshit diatribe on us about freedom of the press or shutting down the press in Venezuela. I've been to Venezuela and I am happy for them to have such a beloved leader such as Hugo Chavez. I am also delighted I am not one of them.

    Solitude is painful when one is young, but delightful when one is more mature...Einstein

    by tazz on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:48:09 AM PDT

  •  What exactly are the... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotusmaglite

    ..."legitimate reasons" why "boobies" shouldn't appear on regular television? Or for that matter, any other biological feature of the human body? I honestly don't understand why it is considered "legitimate" to censor human anatomy to appease some out-dated Puritan notion of sexual shame. Showing a dick will send the country into gut-wrenching hysteria but gun play and a steady diet of grisly murder is somehow acceptable, responsible fodder for the airwaves in our society. Weird.  

    •  LOL (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drawingporno

      And with a handle like "drawingporno", what side exactly did we expect you to fall on this issue?

      Of course, I completely agree.

      The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there. - Yasutani Roshi

      by lotusmaglite on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 11:55:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hey, I'd be out of a job.... (0+ / 0-)

        ...if people grew up with a healthy understanding and respect for the human body. If from an early age Americans were familiarized with the attributes and function of genitalia, pornography would dissipate and marketing campaigns relying on overt titillation and smirking sexual references would no longer be effective. How strange is it that television can show breasts as long as the nipples are pixilated even though every person in the world can look at their own nipples in the mirror so know exactly what lies beneath the blur? Anyway, not to go too far afield from the initial premise of the diary here, I'm just dumbfounded at how casually people accept censorship regarding this matter as inherently valid.  

  •  Real "freedom" of edited press... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotusmaglite

    ..is in this country of ours, not in Venezuela. Here we're systematically misinformed and dis-informed by a well choreographed orchestra of our "free" press - and we're not even aware of it.

  •  My own view (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Riff, crankyinNYC
    As a leftist who speaks fluent Spanish and lives in Latin America (in a place which is currently having it's yearly crazy hailstorm), but does not closely follow Venezuela, my judgement is that you are partially right. I find it not at all hard to believe that the three anti-chavista networks are each worse than Fox, and I know that the web of rightist propaganda is very well-organized throughout Latin America (AL for short).

    But I've also seen Chavez speak, and look, he really is a megalomaniac. One who happens to have the support of more than half the country. And he's not exactly powerless to fight the propaganda; he has Telesur.

    And censorship doesn't work. Sure, the airwaves are a public good. But if I run the dial on my radio here, about a third of what I pick up will be pirate stations. The pirate stations are 90% evangelist crap and 10% leftist music and talk; the non-pirate ones are 60% evangelist and 40% music. I hate most of the pirate stations, but I'm willing to tolerate them all because of the one I love.

    I guess what I'm saying is that supporting either side is not helping Venezuela. What would help? I'm not sure, but promoting democratic values is a start.

    Chavez is the democratic leader and the airwaves are a public good, so he has the right to shut down his opposition. But he is not right to do so, and I oppose that action.

    Senate rules which prevent any reform of the filibuster are unconstitutional. Therefore, we can rein in the filibuster tomorrow with 51 votes.

    by homunq on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 12:27:03 PM PDT

  •  Would FCC Allow "Fire" or "Assassinate President" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ActivistGuy, Radical def

    Just as you can't legally shout "fire" in a crowded theater, you can't legally shout "Ignore the vote totals, take to the Streets to overthrow the election, assassinate Chavez" on public airways here in Venezuela.  This is what the corporate-owned media did.

    Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support single-payer health care and unions.

    by Justina on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 12:58:52 PM PDT

  •  Given that the privately owned media (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Anak

    Helped in the planning, organizing and executing of the coup against Chavez...would the US government allow a tv network that had actively participated in an effort to overthrow it keep its license?  Only those who really believe that can denounce Chavez for "restricting" the media.  For those who don't understand the role that Venezuela's corporate-owned networks played in the coup, you really need to watch the documentary made by some Irish filmmakers who had just happened to be in Venezuela doing a story on Chavez when the coup happened:

    The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

    We who have been nothing shall be all. This is the final struggle. ~E. Pottier

    by ActivistGuy on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 02:00:28 PM PDT

    •  No, the US government wouldn't allow it (0+ / 0-)

      but maybe it should.

      I don't have any centrism fetish. I think that the US is too centrist, and so calls for more centrism or bipartisanship in the US are almost always harmful.

      But in Venezuela, there is nobody with the slightest interest in seeking a middle ground. This with-us-or-against-us mindset leads to excesses on both sides. Forced to vote between Chavez and some would-be golpista, I'd choose Chavez in a heartbeat. But Chavez is just about the worst leftist or quasi-leftist leader in Latin America - worse than Castro, Morales, Colom, ....

      You can't win by making your opponent shut up. It just doesn't work.

      Senate rules which prevent any reform of the filibuster are unconstitutional. Therefore, we can rein in the filibuster tomorrow with 51 votes.

      by homunq on Sat Jul 24, 2010 at 05:10:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We don't want freedom... we want oil (0+ / 0-)

    We sent the marines to Costa Rica, and 46 thousand ships.  Did you see anything about that in the MSM?

    Of course not. But all of a sudden Venezuela broke relations with Colombia, our South American parangon of freedom and human rights and freedom of the press!

    Colombia is acusing Farp terrorists of coming from Venezuela to terrorize them. OMG... can you imagine what is coming?  A new war in the jungle. All those innocent people going to die for our oil!

  •  Honestly, I couldn't finish your rambling analogy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Riff

    Generally there is a concision and elegance in being correct.
    I think rather than construct a very intricate straw man argument, you might ask if any public broadcasting was shut down in the US after broadcasting the details of Nixon's illegal bombing of Cambodia or the Watergate break-in.
    Was the BBC closed down when details of the Profumo Affair were broadcast? I don't think so.

    I expect that Chavez may not be as bad as the worst that is said about him. But on the other hand, the contortions his most ardent supporters need to take to continue their uncritical support is rather amazing.

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