As Nicholas Fondacaro at NewsBusters noted on Friday, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow's obsession with the money raised for President Donald Trump's inauguration went into overdrive the previous evening. During the same show, Maddow combined that obsession with another one shared by most of the news media — the absolute necessity to avoid blaming Venezuela's dire economic circumstances on its Bolivarian socialist form of government and its de facto dictator Nicolas Maduro — to come up with the most ridiculous reason imaginable as to why civil order in Venezuela has broken down.
As Venezuelan ruler Nicolas Maduro struggled against violent protests against him, the U.S. based company General Motors had its means of production seized by the socialist regime Thursday. “General Motors tonight saying it's been forced to suspend its operation in Venezuela after the government there confiscated its factory,” announced ABC Anchor David Muir during World News Tonight, “GM forced to lay off 2700 workers, but vowing to fight this tonight.” Sadly, CBS was the only network not to report the theft.
William Finnegan's lengthy report from Venezuela in the November 14 edition of the New Yorker begs two obvious questions: Where have you guys been? And why did you wait until the wee hours on November 7, the day before Election Day in the U.S., when almost everyone's attention was on the presidential and other contests, to post it online?
The report's headline asks a question: "How did this happen?" Finnegan fails to satisfactorily answer it. Instead, he wants readers to believe that the country began an inexorable downhill slide many years before Hugo Chavez took over Venezuela's government and embarked on his Bolivarian socialist "revolution." It wasn't inevitable, but his telling of the story contains implicit warnings applicable to the U.S. which the magazine appears to have decided that its left-leaning readers didn't need to see before they voted.
Thursday evening, Venezuela's Bolivarian Socialist government arbitrarily suspended the recall effort against "President" Nicolas Maduro, demonstrating beyond any doubt that the South American country now functions as a dictatorship. Given its gravity, this news, described in coverage at the Wall Street Journal as "a crisis of democracy," is not getting the visibility it should be receiving.
The absurd headline at a September 20 story at the New York Times is a sight to behold: "How Bad Off Is Oil-Rich Venezuela? It’s Buying U.S. Oil."
As formulated, the headline is clearly meant to communicate something that is supposedly a surprising new development in that country, which, thanks to 17 years of Bolivarian socialist rule, has turned into a financially destitute humanitarian disaster area. But then, deep into the story, readers finally learn that "Early this year, the United States began shipping more than 50,000 barrels a day of the light crude that Venezuela needs to prepare its own oil for export, joining a handful of suppliers that have become vital to keeping the country’s oil industry afloat." In other words, this is only big news to Times readers because the Old Gray Lady didn't think it was worth reporting when it began happening.
Over two weeks ago, the Bolivarian socialist government of Venezuela under de facto dictator Nicolas Maduro decreed that private-sector and government workers can be forced to work on farms if the military, which is now responsible for food production and distribution in that shortage-wracked country, deems it necessary.
Relevant site searches indicate that the country's forced-labor decree still isn't news at the Associated Press or the New York Times. So it's disappointing, though sadly not surprising, that the AP, the Times, and for that matter the vast majority of the rest of the English language establishment press, has failed to report the frightening news that Maduro has hired Alfredo Serrano, a deeply committed Marxist, to be his next economic czar.
Now we know why Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela's de facto dictator, recently handed over responsibility for food production to the military: He's going to need soldiers on farms and elsewhere in the food distribution chain to keep conscripted workers in line.
That's because on July 22, now over a week ago, Maduro's government decreed "... that any employee in Venezuela can be effectively made to work in the country’s fields as a way to fight the current food crisis." Those words are from a July 28 Amnesty International press release. Amnesty correctly contends that the move "is unlawful and effectively amounts to forced labour." Amnesty appears to have taken six days to respond because the first reports from the world's press did not appear until Thursday. As of shortly after 9 a.m. Eastern Time Saturday morning, the Associated Press, despite having at least four reporters in Venezuela, still hasn't covered Maduro's order. Neither has the New York Times.
The latest installment in leftist excuse-making when socialism fails goes into the "It would work if leaders just had the right people handling things" file. It comes in the form of a Friday morning "analysis" at the Associated Press. Writers Jorge Rueda and Joshua Goodman want readers to believe that the economy in the Bolivarian socialist and once fairly prosperous nation of Venezuela would be in much better shape today if the military didn't botch the responsibilities de facto dictator Nicolas Maduro had previously given it to handle the nation's "battle against widespread food shortages." Now the AP pair believe it will get even worse, because the military has essentially been given total control in this area.
It would be far too kind to give three cheers to CNN for exposing the disastrous conditions in a children's hospital in Caracas, Venezuela caused by over 15 years of Bolivarian socialism in a July 13 broadcast report.
The network gets one hearty cheer for the detailed report's existence. It lost a chance for a second cheer when it failed to mention the country's socialist form of government which is directly responsible for these conditions. The third cheer went down the drain when one woman who was interviewed seemed to think that the healthcare system's desperate situation may just as likely be caused by the nation's utterly powerless opposition and not the Chavista government of Nicolas Maduro, where the blame totally and obviously lies.
Tuesday's coverage at the Associated Press of the deepening humanitarian crisis in the Bolivarian socialist disaster known as Venezuela focused on the conditions in the ever-lengthening lines its citizens must endure in hopes of obtaining enough of the basics of everyday life just to survive.
Wire service reports often start off relatively brief and expand as reporters gather more information. That didn't happen with the AP's three Tuesday reports. Instead, Hannah Dreier's opening 11:51 a.m. Eastern Time dispatch was lengthy, with many compelling emotional and economic details. The second version of her report over an hour later was almost cut in half, and lost most of its power as a result. A final unbylined story at 3:39 p.m. — the one which most of AP's subscribers appear to have decided to carry — contained only 10 paragraphs, and even failed to note that the country whose people are now spending an average of 35 hours a week in line, and where 90 percent are saying they "can't buy enough to eat," is socialist.
On May 1, the Washington Post's Jackson Diehl warned: "We ignore Venezuela’s imminent implosion at our peril," noting that the South American nation of 30 million "has descended into a dystopia where food, medicine, water and electric power are critically scarce." Given the dire humanitarian crisis which has enveloped that country, broadcast media coverage during the ensuing seven weeks, particularly on the Big Three networks, has been sparse to non-existent.
Yesterday, as Major League Baseball's Los Angeles Dodgers faced the Milwaukee Brewers in LA, legendary Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully, in a 20-second monologue between pitches, did more to substantively educate his audience about the tragic reality in Venezuela than most of the U.S. press has done in months (HT Twitchy):
Curiosamente, los canales en español Números 1 y 2 de Estados Unidos, Univisión y Telemundo respectivamente, hasta ahora no han informado a sus televidentes que el presidente socialista de Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, ha dado un rotundo respaldo de la candidatura presidencial de su camarada estadounidense, Bernie Sanders.