Sunday, February 04, 2007

Of Pawns and Corn

Today Juan Forero is back talking about Chavez and Lourdes Garcia-Navarro discussing Felipe Calderon. The reporting is thin on substance and heavy on opinion. Forero says, that Chavez, "painted the opposition as pawns of the evil Bush administration and that has worked." It'd be great if we actually got some factual investigation into the the Bush/US backing of the coup and they way in which the opposition was used as pawns by the National Endowment for Democracy. Just so listeners don't miss the point, Debbie Elliott says, "Chavez has been trying to position himself as the heir to Fidel Castro..."

On to Mexico, Garcia-Navarro - talking to people complaining about tortilla prices - says, "They were all blaming the government; it's the easiest target. And the left which lost the presidential elections has been using this issue to great advantage...they say this wouldn't have happened if Mexico wasn't importing about a quarter of its corn from the United States. They blame...NAFTA for destroying the Mexican countryside. Under NAFTA, it has to be said, Mexico shed about 30% of its farm jobs." Navarro could have given these complaints even more context by noting that it's not just Mexican leftists who hold such opinions - much of the world (see these IRC, NYT, or CSM articles), including the respected organization Oxfam, have noted the ruin that Calderon type policies have brought to rural Mexico.

NPR does a great service to multinational corporations and US neoliberal foreign policy by presenting the critiques of such policy as nothing more than leftist complaint and opinion, instead of the reasonable, reality-based opposition to policies that are making a few very rich and many very poor.


larry, dfh said...

Hey, one of their legacy donors is ADM. I mean integrity's alright, as long as it doesn't interfere with the bottom line, right?

jules said...

BTW, Latino USA had a great story this week about how increased ethanol production is playing havoc with corn prices in Mexico. Tortillas are their main food staple there, and poor people will be going hungry as a result of this new brilliant scheme to further enrich ADM!

Larry said...

I understand the importance of

Larry said...

I understand the importance of supporting my local public radio stations. It's pledge week, after all. So I consider myself fortunate to live in the DC area, where I can contribute to a Pacifica radio outlet.