Tag Archives: klein

Obama’s ‘Mistakes’: Way Too Early to Judge By Joe Klein

Opt-Ed by Joe Klein

Time—Over the past few weeks, Barack Obama has been criticized for the following: He didn’t go to Berlin for the 20th anniversary of the Wall’s coming down. He didn’t make a forceful enough statement on the 30th anniversary of the U.S. diplomats’ being taken hostage in Iran. He didn’t show sufficient mournfulness, at first, when the Fort Hood shootings took place, and he was namby-pamby about the possibility that the shootings were an act of jihad. He has spent too little time focusing on unemployment. He bowed too deeply before the Japanese Emperor. He allowed the Chinese to block the broadcast of his Shanghai town-hall meeting. He allowed the Chinese President to bar questions at their joint press conference (a moment memorably satirized by Saturday Night Live). He didn’t come back with any diplomatic victories from Asia. He allowed Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and the other 9/11 plotters to be tried in the U.S. criminal-justice system rather than by the military. He has dithered too long on Afghanistan. He has devoted too much attention to — and given congressional Democrats too much control over — health care reform, an issue that is peripheral to a majority of Americans.

And all this has led to a dangerous slippage in the polls, it is said, a sense that his presidential authority is ebbing.

As a fully licensed pundit, I have the authority to weigh in here … but I demur. Oh, I could sling opinions about every one of the events cited above — some were unfortunate — but it would matter only if I could discern a pattern that illuminates Obama’s presidency. The most obvious pattern, however, is the media’s tendency to get overwrought about almost anything. Why, for example, is the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall demolition so crucial that it requires a President’s presence? Which recent U.S. President has gotten the Chinese to agree to anything big? (In fact, Obama has secured significant diplomatic cooperation from the Chinese on North Korea, Afghanistan and Pakistan.) Was his deep bow indicative of anything other than his physical fitness? (My midsection, sadly, prevents the appearance of obsequiousness in such circumstances.)

Stepping back a bit, I do see a metapattern that extends over the 40 years since Richard Nixon’s Southern strategy began the drift toward more ideological political parties: Democrats have tough first years in the presidency. Of the past seven Presidents, the two Bushes rank at the top in popularity after one year, while Obama and Bill Clinton rank at the bottom, with Jimmy Carter close by. There is a reason for that. Democrats come to office eager to govern the heck out of the country. They take on impossible issues, like budget-balancing and health care reform. They run into roadblocks — from their own unruly ranks as well as from Republicans. They get lost in the details. A tax cut is much easier to explain than a tax increase. A foreign policy based in bluster — railing against an “axis of evil” — is easier to sell than a foreign policy based in nuance. Of course, external events count a lot: the ratings of Bushes I and II were bolstered, respectively, by the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the flattening of the World Trade Center. Reagan’s rating — 53% and headed south — was dampened by a deepening recession.

blank

More @

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Bad Journalism, Barack Obama, Bill O'Reilly, Blogging, Change, CNN, Colbert Report, Conservative, Creepy right-wing antics, Dylan Ratagan, Ed Schultz, Fox News, Glenn Beck, Health Care Reform, Jake Tapper, Jon Stewart's The Daily Show, Lou Dobbs, Media and Entertainment, MSNBC, News, Norah O'Donnell, Politics, Pres. Barack Obama, Presidents, Rachel Maddow, Republicans, Sean Hannity, Television, The Ed Show, The Morning Meeting w/Dylan Ratagan, The O'Reilly Factor, The Rachel Maddow Show, Uncategorized, United States

Justicia Poetica: Dobbs Rises and Then Falls Thanks to Immigrants

Op-ed by Roberto Lovato

robertolovatoofficial-picAs I watched the sad eyes of Lou Dobbs last night while he bade an abrupt farewell to his long career at CNN, I shed the tears that he apparently couldn’t. I cried in part because, regardless of the Basta Dobbs campaign’s — and my own — constitutional differences with his brand of anti-immigrant, anti-Latino propaganda disguised as news, one couldn’t help but be moved by the fast and fiery demise of a media titan. It really was sad to watch the aging Dobbs go out without the slow grace and good will that characterized Walter Cronkite’s departure in a previous media era.

Yet, while slightly moved by Dobbs’ personal drama, I cried primarily because, as a member, relative and friend of the groups most vilified by Dobbs for so many years — Latinos and immigrants — I was inspired by the power of the movement to oust him, a movement that these same groups and their allies led. In the words of many a jubilant Twitterer and Facebook friend celebrating Dobbs’transition as a victory,”Si Se Pudo” (Yes We Could).

At one level, Dobbs’ departure was influenced by internal dynamics at CNN, a network in need of rapid changes required by the economic, political and demographic shifts transforming media. But at another level, the victory over Dobbs shows that our community is mobilized like never before. It reflects how we have taken important strides since the immigrants rights marches of 2006, and are now using the latest technology and organizing tactics to make our voices heard. Lou Dobbs led us to march with our feet — and with our fingers.

In their search for the right frame for the story, many have commented that ours was a struggle against the kind of hatred promoted by Dobbs and his many guests. But for those working daily to defeat Dobbs, the guiding force of our movement was not hate but love — the love that we show ourselves when, in the face of daily attacks, we stand up and say “Basta,” “Enough.

More than the media or technology or organizing capabilities of Presente.org, Drop Dobbs, DemocraciaUSA, NDN, America’s Voice, NALACC or any other organization, the will of the many to push the powerful few has again reminded us of the centrality of spirituality to social change. I cried mostly because I saw in Dobbs’ departure some of the same intense desire for change that made many of us cry at the election of Barack Obama.

Dobbs himself said it best when, during his farewell, he linked his rapid departure to how “strong winds of change have begun buffeting this country and affecting all of us.” I was touched by these same winds during my travels throughout the country, where I met some of the more than 100,000 people who signed our Basta Dobbs petition. I heard it from the septuagenarian Tejano who, from his hospital bed had a family member text message to tell me, “I’m getting ready to leave the hospital and will be ready to help you get Dobbs out soon.” I saw it in the youthful optimism of the troop of Latina Girl Scouts from south Georgia, who said they wanted to go to Atlanta to protest CNN’s headquarters. And I felt it among the tens of thousands of non-Latinos who responded quickly to our call to demand Dobbs’ removal. Taken together, these people and others are the embodiment of the “strong winds of change” that buffeted Dobbs and CNN.

While on the surface, the anti-Dobbs movement appears as a recent development, its roots go as far back as the beginning of Dobbs attacks on immigrants. Many of the grassroots groups and bloggers allied with our campaign as well as national groups like the National Hispanic Media Coalition, the Southern Poverty Law Center and Media Matters have a long and distinguished history of challenging and checking Dobbs. Without their efforts, there would be no movement.

But for me, the most moving, poetic aspect of the entire Dobbs drama is that it begins and ends with immigrants, including undocumented immigrants. In this sense, the victory reinvigorates the important work of immigration reform. Hopefully Republicans and Democrats are taking note of the power of immigrants and the immigrant rights movement that mobilized to defeat Dobbs. But that’s for tomorrow. For now, let us commemorate this historic event by saying along with immigrants, “Justicia Poetica.”

Roberto Lovato, Co-founder http://www.presente.org

Leave a comment

Filed under BastaDobbs.com, CNN, Culture, Immigration, Journalism, Lou Dobbs, Opinions, Politics, Presente.org, Uncategorized

CNN Can’t Have It Both Ways — Lou Dobbs vs. Latino In America

Posted by Audiegrl

Basta Lou Dobbs: Enough is Enough!

Translation:  Hypocrisy: CNN releases documentary "Latino in America" while Hispanics around the country protest against the anti-Latino propaganda of Lou Dobbs

Translation: Hypocrisy: CNN releases documentary "Latino in America" while Hispanics around the country protest against the anti-Latino propaganda of Lou Dobbs

New York Times/Brian Stelter—Instead of being simply a draw for Hispanic viewers, CNN’s four-hour documentary, “Latino in America,” turned into a political rallying cry for activist groups who are calling on the cable news channel to fire Lou Dobbs, a veteran anchor with well-known views on immigration.

An array of minorities held small protests in New York and other cities on Wednesday, the first night of CNN’s presentation. They are trying to highlight what they say are years of lies about immigration by Mr. Dobbs, who anchors the 7 p.m. hour on CNN.

Civil Rights Lawyer Isabel Garcia

Civil Rights Lawyer Isabel Garcia

CNN, a unit of Time Warner, has not commented on the protests or covered them on its news programs. Isabel Garcia, one of the activists featured in the documentary said she tried to raise what she called Mr. Dobbs’s “hatred” on one of the channel’s news programs Wednesday, but her remarks were cut from the interview.

The hypocrisy, critics say, lies in CNN’s decision to woo Hispanic viewers with a prime-time documentary while still giving Mr. Dobbs a nightly forum. Roberto Lovato, a founding member of Presente.org, a Latino advocacy group, said in a statement, “We won’t allow the network to court us as viewers while, at the same time, they allow Dobbs to spread lies and misinformation about us each night.”

blank

More @ New York Times

Latino In America” Not The Ratings Hit “Black In America” Was

Soledad O'Brian and Eva Longoria Parker

Soledad O'Brian and Eva Longoria Parker

Huffington Post/Danny Shea—CNN’s “Latino in America” received a lot of attention, particularly from observers interested in the discord between the special and Lou Dobbs’ perceived anti-immigration stance.

The attention wasn’t enough to make it a ratings hit, however.

The two-part special, which aired Wednesday and Thursday nights from 9-11 PM, drew significantly fewer viewers than the summer’s “Black in America,” and led the network to third place in both total viewers and the A25-54 demographic both nights.

blank

More @ Huffington_Post_Logo

In his piece, The Dobbs Factor, blogger Matt Yglesias writes:

Immigrants Rally In Lou Dobbs Masks

Immigrants Rally In Lou Dobbs Masks

“Dobbs has a long history of spreading hate and paranoia. He has routinely discussed the North American Union conspiracy theory, incorrectly claimed that undocumented immigrants drain social services and don’t pay taxes, and repeatedly amplified the falsehood that undocumented immigrants are disproportionately violent. He has been an unrepentant purveyor of hateful attacks, fraudulently claiming, for example, that immigrants are spreading leprosy and seek to reconquer the southwestern United States.

For all that, if CNN wants to stand by Dobbs then, fine, they should stand by Dobbs. But if they want to stand by Dobbs then they should stand by Dobbs and feature him prominently in their four-hour “Latino in America” documentary. After all, from what you can see watching the network day-to-day the executives at CNN think Dobbs has a credible and important perspective on this issue. Instead, they just kind of want to sweep the crazy uncle under the rug for the purposes of a big special, and then trot him back out again when everything’s back to normal.”

Lou Dobbs and his wife Debi, in the kitchen of their New Jersey farmhouse.

Lou Dobbs and his wife Debi, in the kitchen of their New Jersey farmhouse.

In a 2007 60 Minutes interview, Leslie Stahl got a chance to talk to both Lou and Debi Dobbs who have been married for over 25 years:

Lesley, I have worked with migrant workers in the fields. I’m probably one of the few people in the debate who actually has. I’ve got the greatest respect for those folks. Hard-working, decent, and back-breaking work,” Dobbs tells Stahl.

If that pat on the back is surprising, given the tone of his show, there’s something even more surprising, something he never brings up: the fact that his wife Debi is Mexican-American.

When he is criticized, as he has been, and even accused of being racist as he has been, what goes on inside of you?” Stahl asks Debi Dobbs.

It used to bother me. But now, it doesn’t bother me at all. I know he’s not. People that know him know he’s not. Sometimes I find it amusing,” she replies.

Who Is BastaDobbs.com?

bastadobbsphoto1BastaDobbs.com exists to change how the media reports on Latinos and immigrants in the United States, starting with the worst offenders: Lou Dobbs and his network, CNN. We focus on Lou Dobbs because he, more than any other media personality, has obsessed about and given voice to the most extreme views about immigrants and Latinos. And yet, because CNN refuses to translate Dobbs into Spanish, too few Latinos and immigrants are even aware of the role he plays in spreading fear and hatred in our communities.

***Update***

NJ Law Enforcement Appear to Contradict Dobbs’ Version of Gunfire Incident

New Jersey state police seem to be contradicting CNN Host Lou Dobbs’ account of a gunfire incident near his Sussex County, New Jersey, house.

lou-dobbsOn Monday on his radio show, Dobbs stated that “my wife has now been and I have been shot at.” The alleged incident, which Dobbs had reported to the New Jersey State Police, took place three weeks prior to the October 26 broadcast of the Lou Dobbs Show, and Dobbs told his listeners that it had “followed weeks and weeks of threatening phone calls.” Dobbs’ discussion of the incident during his radio show also included mention of both longtime critic and FOX host Geraldo Rivera and the immigrant advocacy organizations calling for his removal from CNN including the National Council of La Raza, America’s Voice and other “ethnocentric interest groups.”

Without specifying who he suspects of making the alleged threats, he also said on his radio show that “They’ve threatened my wife, they’ve now fired a shot at my house while my wife was standing next to the car.” Concluding with a call for “truth, justice and the American way,” Dobbs cautioned “if anybody thinks that we’re not engaged in the battle for the soul of this country right now, you’re sorely mistaken.” And during an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Thursday, Dobbs spoke again about the gunfire incident, linking it to “threatening phone calls tied to the positions I’ve taken on illegal immigration.”

blank
More @ Huffington_Post_Logo

BastaDobbs.com teamed with award-winning filmmaker Arturo Perez to make a powerful new video

Laura Flanders of GRIT TV interviews Roberto Lovato of Presente.org and New America Media, Erica Gonzalez of El Diario/La Prensa, and Cathy Areu of Catalina magazine and the Washington Post magazine. The panel discusses ignored Latino issues, from the 2010 Census to the general strike in Puerto Rico, the continued standoff in Honduras and the way the mainstream media equates “Latino” with “immigrant.”

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Related Articles

BastaDobbs Responds to Invite from Lou

VIDEO: Lou Dobbs vs. ‘Latino in America

CNN Edits Out Dobbs Criticism From Taped Interview

Drop Dobbs Campaign: CNN Pressured to Fire Lou Dobbs

John Riofrio: “Latinos in America

Eva Longoria Parker Joins Latino Commission With Sights Set on New National Museum

Ted Turner Would Fire Lou Dobbs

Geraldo Rivera Slams Lou Dobbs In Speech, Says Dobbs Won’t Be Coming To Fox

AP: CNN’s Latino Special Avoids Dobbs

Dobbs does CNN no favors with Latinos

CNN’s Lou Dobbs apologizes for Hispanic remarks

9 Comments

Filed under Hispanic/Latino/Latina, Immigration, Media and Entertainment, Politics, Uncategorized