Monday, August 11, 2008

Sack Simon Romero!

Please New York Times just let this poor excuse for journalism go!

For a moment I thought Simon might be getting better, when he scooped the attempts by rightwing politicians to pull a military coup, but then I remembered hits from the New York Times central offices snooping around my blog (sitemeter is a good tool), which has been running a "coup watch" as of late. And just yesterday someone from the NYT linked through this blog to Otto's coverage of fascist voter intimidation in Santa Cruz. Why didn't you editors force Simon to include it in his referendum wrap up? and balance that bull he sends into your desk? As I've been egging you to cover for months with my "Note to Simon Romero" now in the top pages of google search for the guy. I'm sure you've seen it. You editors are more than welcome to steal stories from this blog, but for the love of god fire that fraudulent jerk Simon Romero!

Indulge me and lets go through his two Bolivia Referendum stories.

From the day prior:

In mentioning the coup plot, Simon gives us a halfass justification, "If Mr. Morales prevails in the referendum, his political opponents in relatively prosperous lowland provinces have vowed not to recognize the results, describing the president’s stifling of judicial criticism of the vote as illegal." and at the end of the article gives us another example of Morales' tyrannical hatred for the law, quoting Morales as saying, “When a jurist tells me, ‘Evo, you are making a legal mistake; what you are doing is illegal,’ I go ahead even if it’s illegal,” Mr. Morales said. “I later tell the lawyers, ‘If it’s illegal, you make it legal. Otherwise, what have you studied for?’ ” Continuing, "Bolivia’s fractious judicial system, with some pro-Morales judges supporting the referendum and others denouncing irregularities"

Except at no point is it mentioned that actually Morales has never strayed from constitutional authority, unlike the Media Luna Prefects who 1) passed unconstitutional autonomy statutes without international monitors after the vote had been declared illegal by the NATION ELECTORAL COURT!, 2) claimed they could ignore the results of the recall referendum passed by Congress and 3) through the corrupt Departmental Electoral Courts pressured the National Court to "reinterpret" the rules of the recall referendum clearly spelled out in legislation. Apparently, according to Simon doing what the law clearly states qualifies as "irregularities".

Next. Simon: "demonstrators in the gas-rich department of Tarija prevented Mr. Morales from meeting there on Tuesday with President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, whose financial and military aid to Mr. Morales’s government is chafed at in parts of Bolivia."

Not mentioned is that Kirchner of Argentina was also suppose to have arrived and that these "demonstrators" prevented the meeting by threat of violence, storming the airport.

"That outcome [opposition Prefects losing] would allow Mr. Morales to pick the governors’ successors, which could aggravate tension in some areas over redistributing petroleum royalties to bolster social security payments for impoverished elderly citizens. Political leaders in eastern Santa Cruz began a hunger strike this week aimed at recovering a portion of the royalties."

First off Morales has explicitly stated that he would not pick new "governors" (the term is Prefect) and instead would call for new elections so the people can decide how to replace these losers. Then as we have mentioned several times following Otto's analysis, "controversy" over royalties shifted to pensions is total bullshit as Santa Cruz and the rest of the Media Luna are currently racking in more than double what they were before Evo came into office.

Now the good stuff from today:

In the days leading up the vote, protesters blockaded airport runways and prevented Mr. Morales from traveling to several regional capitals, reflecting the repudiation of his policies in petroleum-rich provinces, called departments, like Tarija and Santa Cruz. One opposition bastion, Sucre, has mounted a seemingly quixotic campaign to be named the country’s capital.

Thank you for fact checking Simon's previous wording on the Tarija incident, but why not on the Sucre capital campaign? The descriptive qualifier is not "quixotic" but "outrageously racist".

Heinz Dieterich, a political analyst in Mexico who writes widely on leftist movements in Latin America, summed up Mr. Morales’s situation as being “an exile in the majority of the provinces of his own land."

Also thanks for forcing Simon to cite someone respectable from the Left, like Heinz Dieterich but read Dieterich here and tell me Simon pulled the most informative quotes. How about this line not quoted, "Evo’s ethics and political formation reject the use of legitimate state repression in order to impose his political project."

Indeed, Mr. Morales seemed to show mixed interest in reconciliation while casting his vote Sunday morning near his small coca farm in the Chapare, a coca-growing area in central Bolivia.

What was 9pm past Simon's bed time to stay up and watch Evo call for renewed national unity, dialogue, and respect for the law?

The referendum originated in May in what now seems to be a self-defeating effort to remove Mr. Morales from office by Podemos, an opposition party whose influence has eroded.

Why do we find this out now, as opposed to when we were talking about how much disrespect Evo has for the law?

Mr. Morales, 48, appears ready to use the referendum to proceed with policies that have enraged his political opponents, like the acceptance of tens of millions of dollars from Venezuela.

Yup, it's those millions of dollars from Hugo that makes opponents mad. How about the BILLIONS from natural gas revenue? hmm, maybe that might be more important here?

Some opposition leaders also showed little desire for reconciliation. “No to the big foreign monkeys!” Rubén Costas, governor of eastern Santa Cruz, shouted in a televised speech Sunday night, revealing some the racist language used to refer to Venezuela.

Again as Otto pointed out, Costas was not referring to Hugo but Evo. Don't any of your fact checkers speak Spanish?

But this last piece of BULLSHIT by Simon takes the cake and should qualify him for automatic dismissal. NOW!

Perhaps the most contentious issue has been Mr. Morales’s land reform project in Santa Cruz, the economically vibrant eastern department. Rich landowning families in the area have clashed with government officials seeking to distribute their landholdings to Aymara and Quechua Indian migrants.

Funny thing. Simon reported on these clashes with those rich landowners. Don't you remember that Ron Larsen character and his native slaves? As Simon is fully aware, those government officials were not trying to redistribute land to Aymara and Quechua migrants but back to the Guarani, whose ancestral home is southern Santa Cruz. Meaning they were there before the Spanish or that slave driver Larsen ever showed up!

What kind of racist, slavering, fascist apologist is Simon? Aren't you ashamed to have him on your staff?

One can only conclude that if Simon is not let go in the near future, you editors at the NYT are, like Simon, total douchebags with zero respect for truthful reporting. If I am being too harsh please use the comment section and fire back, even under a fake name if you want.


Bina said...

Shit, I could do better Bolivia journalism in my jammies here in Southern Ontario than Simon Romero could do on location as he allegedly does!

BTW, ever notice how it really doesn't look good on Tarija to scare off their biggest gas customer--the president of Argentina? At this rate, Uruguay better hurry up and develop its offshore gas fields; I bet Argentines would MUCH prefer to deal with a friendly democratic-socialist neighbor than with rude bastards like the fascists who have Tarija under their inky thumbs.

Otto Rock said...


Flávio Américo dos Reis said...

Applause (cubed)!!!

That should go for (1) Juan Forero of NPR and Washington Post fame and (2) that imbecile Jackson Diehl of the Washington Post as well.

I hate them with a hot holy passion because they get away with so much lying and so much intentionally awful, purposely misleading reporting one cannot help but suspect they are CIA plants.

I remember some reporters at the Miami Herald were sacked because they also worked for Radio Marti. That's the ethical thing to do. They have to be sacked.

Revolter said...

I heard that Simon Romero owns land (and slaves) in Santa Cruz.

Carlos said...

If Romero doesn't want to write this kind of stuff, there are plenty of other ambitious young correspondents who will....

That said, its obscene to imagine the number of people that read his articles. Even worse, those who only read the first half...

Bina said...

Ditto what Flavio said. They all suck. So does Andres Oppenheimer (schloppenheimer!) of the Miami CIA-Herald. I doubt very much that any of the real CIA plants will be weeded out, though...Corporate Amurrica demands its pound of flesh, and you know what that means...