The Blanket

Nothing Left

Eoghan O'Suilleabhain

It's bad enough that right-wingers rant about The New York Times being liberal, but it's stretching the bounds of civility to have to also hear left-wingers rant about The Guardian being liberal. Most things being relative, certainly the latter rag is less stained than the former, but all private for profit free market newspapers in the West are advertising based so naturally are in symbiotic sympathy with their multi-national corporate advertisers. As such they will no more bite the hand that feeds them anymore than a local village shopkeeper would want to shun his or her best customers. So what's good for General Motors will more times than not be editorially written as good for the rest of us.

Hence, it is a rare day indeed to see (if at all) any such corporate sponsored corporately owned newspaper take the side of say the Anti-Nice Treaty forces over the Pro-Nice Treaty forces, or for that matter socialism over capitalism or labour over management or even little free market countries over big free market countries. Come to think of it, it is very rare to see any advertising based daily newspaper anywhere support a labour strike or work stoppage unless of course it was going on at a competitor's newspaper.

And what daily in the States has ever written a nice thing about roadside billboards or the US Office of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)? No doubt that is because of their own dislike for competition from other advertising businesses and that their own in-house labour problems are often times engendered by managerially negligent life & limb accidents around their rolling presses. Therefore, they write editorials on among other things protecting the roadway environment and on protecting business against government interference without any mention of their own conflicts of interest.

Sure any newspaper or media outlet is entitled to their point of view but it'd behoove the rest of us to see beyond their narrow little opinion dominated universe and see through their incessant mask of objectivity especially when it slips from time to time as it did on The Guardian (Monday, July 15, 2002 at page 18). While trundling through the pages of this sheepish pulp I stumbled upon the following nuggets in an obsequious obituary written by Guardian regular Greg Chamberlain (repeated verbatim in The Irish Times, [Saturday, July 20, 2002 at page 16]) for Joaquin Balaguer, the six-times elected President of the Dominican Republic: "He came to politics during the ferocious dictatorship of the Generalissimo - 'El Benefactor' - Rafael Trujillo whom he slavishly served" (emphasis added). Yikes!

Soon thereafter, backed by the United States and its military occupation, "(Balaguer's) 1966 election was engineered by preventing his fellow man of letters, left-winger Juan Bosch.ousted victor of the country's first free elections in 1962 from campaigning. Balaguer let loose the old regime's thugs, who murdered thousands of his real and supposed enemies. He claimed he was powerless against what he called 'uncontrollable elements'" (emphasis added). Ah sure! As long as they weren't the poor killing the rich or neo-nazis killing Jews then all is forgiven.

But just when you think The Guardian would be condemning this Waylon Smithers- cum-Ariel Sharon, here comes next their most precious gem: "His lip service to democracy had helped the country keep its balance and advance as its plantation economy was battered by the global market"(emphasis added). D'oh! So that's the secret.

That's right! Now you can tell them you read it here in the liberal Guardian (and the so called Irish Times). Pretending to be democratic while killing thousands is ok so long as it advances the free market economy. If only Joe Stalin could have figured this out. That is why I suppose there are good bombs and bad bombs, collateral damage and not criminal carnage. It is why the US needs immunity from the International Crimes Court or else the right to invade the Netherlands on demand. Without immunity their pretentious little democratic nation building game would be up. Guys like George Sr. Bush and Colin Powell wouldn't be able to firebomb to death 2,000 Panamanians while they slept in an effort to oust a CIA stooge like Manuel Noriega on cocaine charges. Is that the kind of cob-webbing-the-capitalist world we'd want to live in? Who really wants to dance away the night at Afghan weddings anyway?

Now our part of the world is safe for paying lip service to democracy because we cannot trust the little people to husband their own natural resources or vote correctly on Nice or to have a sense of perspective about these things. That's why American CEO Warren Anderson can steer clear of India's civil court writs for the 16,000 wrongful deaths by his company Union Carbide in Bophal, whereas Osama Bin Laden has to (rightly) stay on the move while William Calley gets to set up a jewelry shop in Augusta, Georgia since being (wrongly) pardoned by Richard Nixon after only 2 weeks in jail for his convicted role in the 1968 My Lai Massacre of over 600 unarmed Vietnamese: mostly old men, women & children.

Terrorism in the name of profit is good. Terrorism against the name of profit is bad. It's as simple as Lon Nol vs. Pol Pot. Only radicals would condemn both. That is why any difference between The New York Times and The Guardian and The Irish Times (among others) is one of degree not kind. Not surprisingly, all these papers support the continued British partition of Ireland. And lest anyone think there be too much generalizing here from a particular, consider that this obituary for Balaguer is really a rare glimpse of insight into how Western elite geo-political calculations are normally made even if indeed it was by editorial oversight. Why else would the American Government have backed this democratically dubious mass murderer Joaquin Balaguer not once but six times only to have The Guardian and The Irish Times now pay homage to him? He kept his people down for foreign direct investment while much of the Western world still boycotts Castro's Cuba. And the Bertie Ahern's of the world take notice because they know what side their bread is buttered.

This is in part why we are all voting yet again on whether to stay a neutral Irish Nation or become a European province and fight for Spain in Morocco. Our middle managers and their political elite want us to be even weaker nationally than we already are because there are a lot of British inspired upper class Irish people and their handmaidens who don't really like being Irish such is the nature of long term oppression and would rather be West Brit or West Eurp. So let us pin their lips together and vote no on Nice II and have our selves a genuine triumph of national democracy. Second verse same as the first since you wouldn't buy a used car from these people anymore than you would from Richard Nixon or Joaquin Balaguer.


 

 

 

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Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it.
- Lenny Bruce
 

Index: Current Articles

22 July 2002

 

Other Articles From This Issue:

 

Systemic Breakdown

Anthony McIntyre

 

Opportunity Knocks, or Not?

Davy Carlin

 

Nothing Left
Eoghan O'Suilleabhain

 

On Behalf of the Republican Peace Movement...
Brian Mór

 

Once Upon A Time

Brian Mór


Sorry, Shergar
Brian Mór

 

So Sorry It Hurts

Panopticon

 

19 July 2002

 

The Sorry Truth

Anthony McIntyre

 

Neutral Environment?

Billy Mitchell

 

Sectarianism and How It Can Be Fought
Hazel Croft

 

Support Irish Glass Bottle Workers

 

 

 

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The Blanket Magazine Winter 2002
Republican Voices
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