Thursday, May 31, 2007
The apparently apology from Lou Dobbs from the Controversial and inflated information on his show
I've been, over the years, because of our reporting on controversial issues and my strongly held beliefs on those issues, attacked, and usually pretty vigorously, by both the left wing and the right wing of this nation's media, both mainstream and otherwise, and of course the politicians that form the extremes of our political spectrum.
As a matter of fact, I'm regularly attacked by the right wing -- the biggest business lobbyists in the country, The Wall Street Journal editorial page, the Bush administration -- for my criticism of so-called free trade policies and outsourcing. Keep crying Lou after you had admitted that you were wrong nobody are going to believe on you either as CNN as a trustable source of Information or news.
I'm regularly attacked by the left wing as well -- the Southern Poverty Law Center, The New York Times, The Nation, MALDEF and MEChA -- for my opposition to illegal immigration. Lou you had been attacked to the Inmigrants, Pro Inmigrants, U.S. Citizens, to CEO's, Business and most of us.So we just want the true not missinforming the Citizens utilizing their fear to create anger, Xenophobia, and Racism.
Today, The New York Times published a column that picks up where an advertisement -- a paid advertisement in The Times, paid for by the Southern Poverty Law Center -- left off two weeks ago. This is not a paid advertisement Lou is free.
Today's New York Times column is primarily a personal attack on me, focusing on an ad-lib on the set of this broadcast uttered more than two years ago by Christine Romans on the number of cases of leprosy in this country -- an unscripted ad-lib, not a report by the way. We'd never done a report on leprosy until we had to set this record straight a couple of weeks ago. That's over four and a half years of reporting on that issue. Lou is not an attack to you personally. Is the fight for the principles of Journalism and verification of the sources.
The second issue, accusing us of overstating the number of non-citizens in our federal prisons. That number reported on this broadcast three-and-a-half years ago. Lou you had been overstating numbers on Leprosy cases, claiming that Illegals (Unlawful) Inmigrants burden the prisons, social services, Welfare, cities,
Without representing yourself from an accurate data and source of those numbers.
Now, no one hates making a mistake, I assure you, more than I do. And on this broadcast, we do make mistakes -- not often, mind you -- but certainly enough to frustrate me mightily, and with barely tolerable frequency.
But today's scurrilous personal attack from The New York Times columnist David Leonhardt, carrying the water of the Southern Poverty Law Center, also has the facts wrong. Lou why trying to excuse yourself from making a mistake. just learn to receive a constructive positive criticism.
He wrote that I said that "One third of the inmates in the federal prison system are illegal immigrants." That isn't what I said. I didn't say anything close to it.
We reported that one-third of the federal prison population three and a half years ago were "non-citizens." The columnist said the number was 6 percent. The exact number of the year in question was 29.3 percent for fiscal year 2001. And by the way, we're putting up links on our Web site, loudobbs.com, so you can check the numbers for yourself.
I introduced that report three and a half years ago by saying the number of illegal immigrants in our prisons was increasing and the financial burden rising. Well, we had to go back and check, and because our correspondent no longer has his notes to support that statement, that the number of illegal immigrants within a prison population of non-citizens, I have to retract it here tonight, and I apologize to you for the necessity of doing so. But like I said, I do make mistakes.
Let's look at a few other issues, however, raised by The New York Times, including that columnist's statement that none of the enemies of the middle class, he said I said, "play a bigger role than illegal immigrants."
Well, again, that's just not true. I've made perfectly clear over the years that corporate power, expressed by lobbyists spending billions of dollars each year in Washington to influence both political parties and public policy, represents the greatest single threat to this nation's middle class.
That columnist also said I gave air time to white supremacists,(Glen Spencer, NumbersUSA, Minuteman Groups (Chris simcox, Jim Gilchrist, etc), and mentions one by name: Madeleine Cosman, who wrote the article that Christine Romans used as a source for her later leprosy statement.
The fact is, I made a mistake, and I've said we would never have used her as a source if we had known of her controversial background two years ago, at the time of the offending ad-lib. But the columnist fails to note that his own paper wrote a glowing obituary of Madeleine Cosman when she died last year.
And the columnist writes that I suggested that new immigration reform bill would be the first step to a North American union. Nope. What I did say is that the proposed legislation, favored by President Bush and Senator Kennedy and others who are misguided, contains language in Section 413 that, if approved by Congress, would endorse and legitimize the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America, which is the foundation of this administration's efforts to create a North American union, and which would further threaten, in my opinion, our national sovereignty.
Well, as I said tonight at the outset, I don't like personal attacks from both the left and the right wings, but I'm getting kind of used to it. I will assure you that we'll continue to report on the nonpartisan independent reality that is too often overwhelmed by the ideologues in our national media, the left wing and the right wing.
And I'll guarantee you this: Those attacks from the left and the right will continue. They perhaps may get even a little more energetic. And as long as they continue to do so, you and I can rest assured that we're doing more right than wrong on this broadcast.
Minuteman meltdown, Simcox under fire, Shut Down Minuteman Civil Defense Corporations .We’re fighting the government. I don't understand that Chris when you should be able to demonstrate to your fellow members where's the money is? I hoping not in your personal bank account? This Corporation is a joke and stealing the money from the citizens supporting themselves to this groups from the Xenophobia and fear created by the Media. (Lou Dobbs)
Could things get any worse? They can if you’re Chris Simcox, president and founder of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps (MCDC).
MCDC state directors and national leaders tried to meet with Simcox to address issues and concerns they claimed remained unresolved.In a letter to Simcox, dated May 8, Bob Wright, New Mexico State Director, and directors from across the country, cited financial accountability as a major concern, as well as Simcox’s sole and complete control over the organization’s finances, operations, new chapter development, leadership placement, media and public relations.
They requested an update on the status of MCDC’s 501 (c) (3) application, and wanted to know what MCDC’s relationship was with Denier, Declaration Alliance, Alan Keyes, MCDC PAC, MCDC Fence, and any other organization with which MCDC has agreements.
Wright concluded, “We firmly believe in the organization we have all built and do not want to see it become fractured. This is our effort to keep MCDC whole and make it possible for future growth. We look forward to meeting with you and sharing our ideas.” Simcox notified the directors the meeting was unauthorized, and under no circumstances was it sanctioned or approved by the MCDC, Inc,” and said the Board of Directors of MCDC had never authorized a “State Leadership Committee,” stating, “[T]his shadowy entity and any business or actions proposed by it violate the organizational chain of command …” Although he said they have the right to freely assemble, Simcox said his letter served as notice to those on the cc list of Wright’s letter that Wright, Bob Thompson, Stacey O’Connell and Bill Irwin were “terminated for cause as volunteers and volunteer leaders …” adding, if others decided to attend the unsanctioned meeting, they too would be terminated.
Simcox told Sonoran News there were members who egregiously violated procedures and the organization’s bylaws, but said some of those who were terminated had been reinstated.Wright then sent a resolution, passed by 13 national/state directors, to Simcox on May 21, stating their call for a meeting was offered in good faith with the goal of resolving important issues, while “minimizing turmoil within the organization.” They said Simcox’s response threatened “the very existence of the organization at a time in our nation’s history when it is vital for all citizens to work to secure our borders and prevent amnesty.” Citing lost confidence his ability to lead MCDC, they moved that Simcox “reinstate the unjustly terminated Minutemen, immediately…” They gave him until May 24 to schedule a meeting to discuss and resolve the stated issues and said if Simcox failed to respond by May 25, 2007 it would result in the “entire matter being turned over to the national media for their investigation.” On May 25, Thompson sent out an E-mail to Oklahoma volunteers that said, “In a recent meeting … 65 percent of the national leaders and state directors voted they have lost confidence in Chris Simcox’s ability to lead MCDC.” He asked volunteers to carefully read all the documents so they would understand and know the truth, pointing out, “There was never any attempt to take over MCDC or discredit any of its members.” Two days later, an E-mail from Pat Dietrick and her husband was distributed to volunteers in Arizona.
Dietrick wrote, “[W]e are dumfounded as to what is going on. As we entered church last night, we were left speechless by a church member asking us, ‘What’s going on with the Minutemen and stealing money?’” saying they heard it on the Barry Young Show.
Dietrick said that was no surprise as Young has been saying that for years. Although invited to appear on the show, Dietrick doesn’t believe Simcox has ever appeared to prove him wrong.“We also feel like fools,” said Dietrick, “Both of us worked in the office two days a week, eight hours a day … until last October … We taught all the new volunteers and ran the office when the manager was gone.
“When we returned from vacation, we were told we were only responsible for shredding.” That meant no more E-mailing, no more data entry of new members, no more vetting, etc.Dietrick said they were told “the New Jersey representative had stolen away members or did something grievous to MCDC.” Having been active participants in all the border operations, the Dietricks wondered why they were suddenly being treated that way.
They were told “NOBODY was trusted any more.” “We left after a few months of shredding,” said Dietrick, adding, “Now I wonder what all we were shredding!” O’Connell, who is running for Phoenix City Council, District 3, was stunned by what was going on and said, “That’s no way to treat volunteers.” Simcox said, “There’s always someone not satisfied because we’re not buying them batteries for their flashlight,” and stated things like that are not unusual in an organization of such magnitude.A year ago, Jim Campbell, a retired builder and war veteran, mortgaged his home to donate $100,000 toward the Minuteman Fence Project.Campbell believes the money is going to other expenses and organizations, other than the fence and doesn’t believe the fence, as sold to the public, was being built.
On May 22, Campbell filed a complaint in Maricopa County Superior Court against Simcox, Diener Consulting and others alleging fraudulent misrepresentation, breach of contract and rescission of contract.Simcox hadn’t yet seen the complaint but said, as does Campbell’s complaint, “Campbell purchased some of the materials on his own, which are down at the border.” Simcox also said those materials caused them to have to change the design somewhat.
Then on Sunday, while attempting to register the domain name, TheFenceAndTheFire.com, for her new film, Mercedes Maharis, who produced last year’s riveting documentary, “Cries from the Border,” found the domain name was already taken. It was registered to Diener Consultants, Inc., Simcox’s consultants, as is the domain name CriesFromTheBorder.com.Maharis said, “This newest discovery … is off-the-charts astonishing to me.” Last year, MCDC sold, and gave away with a minimum donation, “Cries from the Border.” Maharis says she’s never received any money from MCDC or Diener, and has no idea how long her film was being used to obtain donations for MCDC.
Simcox says he knows nothing about the domain name registration but stated, “We purchased the DVDs directly from her distributor.” When Sonoran News asked about MCDC’s taxes, Simcox said, “Our Form 990 is posted right there on our Web site.” However, the 990 posted was for 2005, not 2006.
According to Simcox, MCDC has received its preliminary letter of determination from the IRS, although they recently responded to a few more questions.
“We’re fighting the government,” Simcox pointed out, “So, they’re not going to make this easy for us,” and expressed gratitude to Alan Keyes and the Declaration Alliance, which he said saved MCDC and allowed it to continue operating while dealing with the bureaucracy. Yeah right know blame bureaucreacy for the misused of donations from many Citizens.
MCDC TWISTED 120 DEGREES DOWN BELOW.
Is our immigration policy on the right track, or is this a violation of human rights? It's not what we tryng to Lou to explained for so long. Lou open your eyes and ears.
T. Don Hutto facility include forcing the children to wear prison uniforms, keeping them in what were once prison cells for 11 to 12 hours a day without toys or other youthful recreation, feeding them food that makes them ill, providing poor medical treatment, and threatening the children with separation from their families if they don’t behave. What a shame for a Country rule of Law.
How "Law and Order" Covers for Bigotry in the Immigration Debate
Central to the debate on immigration has been the appeal to law and order. But behind all the propaganda about respect for the law the core of the anti-immigration movement is about bigotry. Not surprisingly, the laws they appeal to are, in word and practice, unjust and barbaric.
We have heard that we should make a distinction between immigrants on the one hand and illegal aliens on the other. This is a way for the anti-immigration lobby to claim they are not racist or even xenophobic. They simply believe in obeying the law. But forget about the law for a moment. There is no reason why the millions of people who have moved here from Latin America in the last twenty years should be deported or criminalized. No one is being harmed by their presence, and there is strong evidence that we are all benefiting from this influx. So why is it so important to enforce these laws? After all, people violate genuinely serious laws all the time--citizens even. Driving while intoxicated, insider trading, corporate fraud, violating clean air laws are all much bigger problems. So why focus on immigration unless out of ignorance or hate? The truth is, just as with the the bigots of the past who disguised their hatred with the rhetoric of "law and order" when the law was apartheid in South Africa or "black codes" in the American South, the core of the anti-immigration movement today is about hate.
We can see this clearly with the conduct of the raids that have swept up thousands of people across the country in recent months. The federal agency under Homeland Security called Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is following the lead of the anti-immigrant activists. It is the agency responsible for incarcerating children and tearing apart families. ICE defends these huge sweeps of so many non-violent people, reminiscent of the internment of the Japanese during World War II, again with appeals to "law and order." Operation Return to Sender, we are told, is not about deporting just anyone; it is about looking for the worst violators of the law; the immigrants who may actually be a burden on our communities, maybe even a danger to our communities. ICE calls them "immigration fugitives"--a nice official-sounding pejorative to add to the collection: "illegals," "aliens," "wetbacks."
Despite these claims, 37% of the 18,149 people arrested nationwide through Feb. 23 were not wanted fugitives; that number is closer to 45% in the San Francisco Bay Area; and more than half of those arrested in the San Diego region were not these fugitives ICE claims to be after. Even the "fugitives" themselves are rarely people charged with any violent or deleterious crimes.
On the one hand ICE officials claim they can't ignore people they happen to find who are in violation of immigration law, but on the other hand they defend their right to interrogate anyone at a home where they believe a fugitive might be. In the San Francisco Chronicle last week an ICE spokesperson explained, "If agents are going to the home of a target they believe is in the country illegally, they could reasonably suspect that others in the house might be here illegally as well." So it isn't as if they are just stumbling upon law violators; they are using their warrants as a pretext for broad sweeps at homes, workplaces and apartment complexes. ICE as is common with law enforcement is also racially profiling. There are not raids on Irish immigrants or Canadian immigrants; The overwhelming focus is on people with brown skin (just as the debate over border security is focused on our southern border).
To be blunt, ICE is using its power as enforcer of unjust immigration laws to terrorize communities of color. They have specifically raided homes before dawn and have reportedly had automatic weapons with them at some of these raids. They have moved people to far-away detention facilities within hours of arrest (such as to Texas from Massachusetts), and have intimidated and misled people into signing away their rights. They are doing all this while simultaneously claiming that they are merely enforcing the law and that immigrants have due process. Nonsense. They are in fact doing whatever they can to deny people their rights and, again, terrorize these communities.
Behind all the rhetoric about enforcing the law and respect for the law is a lot of ugliness. The immigration law as it stands is oppressive and the proposals in Congress are as well. They all presume that immigrants are a burden on our country and that we ought to have laws that spend billions of our tax dollars to build walls, add law enforcement, greatly restrict the rights of non-citizens, maintain unnecessary restrictions on citizenship and create a system of indentured servitude. Those of us who believe in human rights and human dignity must not be sucked into a debate on law and order. We should make clear that the law is unjust and defend those who are the targets of unnecessary, racist and inhumane enforcement.
They have a deeper, more sinister, anti-Latino agenda
Let’s face it, there has always been a debate surrounding immigration, and with the stakes raised by terrorism and homeland security in our modern era, there always will be. The border represents the frontline of homeland defense to many people, and a breach of either is considered a serious transgression. Discourse goes back and forth on the level of tolerance toward immigration that we have in America, but it is a focus on the policies themselves that draws the most ire, for these policies dictate control over human lives. There is an undeniable human rights issue involved that has many people worried that our policies have gone too far.
I’m speaking most directly to the T. Don Hutto Residential Center in Taylor, Texas. And we were as surprised as anyone to find out that the city is home to one of the two detention centers for immigrant families in the US (the other being the Berks County Youth Center in Pennsylvania). T. Don Hutto is run by a private, for-profit company called Corrections Corporation of America (CCA). The center is a former medium security prison where inmates are held in what were once prison cells. Until recently, the entire building was surrounded by fences topped with razor wire (the razor wire has since been removed). The furor surrounding this facility stems from the detention of women and children.
An official statement from ICE regarding the T. Don Hutto Residential Center reads:
“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) established the T. Don Hutto Family Residential Facility to maintain family unity while the family members await disposition of their immigration cases or their return to their home countries. For how long? many of them had been for months..
Hutto is a modern facility designed to humanely accommodate families with children who are detained as a result of ICE enforcing the immigration laws of the United States.
ICE continues to work with non-governmental organizations, including the Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, the National Immigration Forum and the American Bar Association to identify family-specific detention standards for family detention. These will be in addition to the 38 existing ICE detention standards.”
I’m not here to pontificate on the moral standing of the T. Don Hutto Residential Center. I do, however, feel that this is an issue that a lot of people might not know about, including those that live in close proximity. When I started doing research on the facility, I came across Jay Johnson-Castro and the work he’s been doing to draw attention to it. I’m working on a larger story about the center itself, but thought it was important to cover one of the several candlelight vigils that have been held outside the facility recently. The turnout wasn’t huge, but it was passionate, and this passion seems to be spreading.
On March 6, 2007, the ACLU filed suit against Michael Chertoff (Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security) and six officials from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). They have more information about this lawsuit on their website, but the main objective is to remove children from what they deem a prison environment. They site the Flores Settlement of 1997, a settlement that “established minimum standards and conditions for the housing and release of all minors in federal immigration custody.”
Some of the allegations that the ACLU has brought forth against the T. Don Hutto facility include forcing the children to wear prison uniforms, keeping them in what were once prison cells for 11 to 12 hours a day without toys or other youthful recreation, feeding them food that makes them ill, providing poor medical treatment, and threatening the children with separation from their families if they don’t behave. A spokesperson from ICE said that they do not comment on pending litigation, and a request for a tour of the facility was denied for the time being. I was directed to a fact sheet on the T. Don Hutto Residential Center. It is important to note that many of the allegations made by the ACLU are refuted on this fact sheet.
From here, I’d like to turn this forum over to all of you out there on the World Wide Web. How do you feel about residential detention centers? Is our immigration policy on the right track, or is this a violation of human rights? Whether you’re for or against facilities like T. Don Hutto, what are the bigger implications of their existence (e.g. more secure borders or a bad example of American humanitarianism)?
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Errors and Extremist Sources on Lou Dobbs Tonight and this is not an attack to you Lou just pointing out the facts that you are just a pathethic liar and I am not from the right or left wind either.I wonder if you will pass the lie detector?
• In April 14, 2005, Dobbs said an "invasion of illegal aliens" was bringing "highly contagious diseases" to America "decades after those diseases had been eradicated" here. Reporter Christine Romans stated that more than 7,000 new cases of leprosy had been reported in the previous three years. The real number of new leprosy cases from 2002 through 2004 was 398, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dobbs and Romans said their source for the 7,000 figure was the late Madeleine Cosman, a lawyer who told an anti-immigrant conference in 2005 that "most" Latino immigrant men "molest girls under 12, although some specialize in boys, and some in nuns."
• On Nov. 4, 2003, Dobbs' said "illegal aliens" are "taking up a third of the cells in our federal penitentiaries." The reality: The Government Accountability Office reported in 2005 that 27 percent of federal inmates in 2004 were immigrants – including those here legally. Another GAO study estimated that just 12 percent of non-U.S. citizens in federal custody were there for committing violent crimes. Dobbs often covers crime issues relating to undocumented persons, but several studies debunk the notion that there is a relatively high level of criminality among undocumented immigrants.
• On Oct. 30, 2003, a Dobbs reporter claimed that a National Academy of Sciences report showed an economic loss of up to $10 billion from immigration. The report actually showed that immigrants caused a net gain in the U.S. gross national product of between $1 billion and $10 billion.
• On February 10, 2006, state Rep. Russell Pearce of Arizona was quoted as saying, "You know, the illegal aliens kill more people on an annual basis than we probably lost in the Iraq war to date in the United States. It's enough is enough." At that time, approximately 2,500 of U.S. servicemen and women had died in Iraq. Though there were 16,692 murders in the U.S. in 2005, there is no data that show how many murders were committed by undocumented immigrants.
• On May 19, 2006, Dobbs had on as a guest Robert Rector, a senior research fellow from the Heritage Foundation, discussing his recent report about the number of immigrants that would come to the U.S. if the McCain-Kennedy immigration reform bill then under consideration by the Senate were to be passed. Dobbs said, "Your initial report suggested well over 100 million over the next 10 years." Though Dobbs noted that the White House disputed Rector's numbers, Dobbs supported Rector's research, telling him, "thank you for paying close attention." As to Rector's numbers, they defy logic. As demographers quickly pointed out, his minimum figure of 100 million is equal to almost the entire current population of Mexico. His high-end estimate of 180 million over the next 20 years would require that the equivalent of the current population of Central America be added, too. A series of leading demographers told the San Francisco Chronicle on June 20, 2006, that Rector's projections were vastly overstated, ignored the effects of emigration and used unreasonably high estimates of legalization and naturalization.
• On May 23, 2006, CNN correspondent Casey Wian referred to Mexican President Vicente Fox's visit to the U.S. as a "Mexican military incursion." Wian went on to say that Fox's trip could be called "the Vicente Fox Aztlan tour," referring to the conspiracy theory, popular among anti-immigration zealots, that Mexico is plotting to "reconquer" the American Southwest. As Wian spoke, a graphic appeared on the screen – a map of the United States highlighting the seven southwestern states that Mexico supposedly covets and calls "Aztlan." Remarkably, it was prominently sourced to the Council of Conservative Citizens, a white supremacist hate group that has described blacks as "a retrograde species of humanity" and compared pop singer Michael Jackson to an ape.
• Chris Simcox, co-founder of the Minuteman Project and a top anti-immigration leader, has appeared some 20 times on Dobbs' show. But Dobbs has never reported that Simcox says he has seen the Chinese army secretly maneuvering along the U.S.-Mexico border or that he is a member of the speakers' bureau of the extreme-right John Birch Society.
• Glenn Spencer, head of the American Patrol – regarded as a hate group by the Center – has been interviewed on the Dobbs show at least twice,
on Jan. 7 and June 4, 2004. Spencer promotes the idea that the Mexican government is involved in a secret plot to take over the Southwest. He has also predicted that "thousands will die" in a forthcoming Mexican invasion. Dobbs did not mention the criticism of Spencer's group, the fact that he has spoken at other hate group gatherings or his actions in shooting up a neighbor's garage.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Is immigration the problem?
by Art Perlo.
Lou best friend Roy Beck, head of the anti-immigration group Numbers USA, has been circulating a slick video. Over 1.8 million viewers have seen its frightening picture of the U.S. overwhelmed by immigrants. But beneath the surface is a mix of inaccuracies and misdirection.
Beck starts with this thesis: 1926-1965 was a golden era in America, when immigration was limited to an average of 178,000 per year. As a result, the labor market was tight, and workers enjoyed high wages and prosperity. Since 1965, immigration has increased, now reaching over 1 million per year. The result: surplus labor which has lowered wages and living standards for American workers.
In short, Beck says (low immigration) = (tight labor market) = (high wages).
The facts don’t support Beck. In the 1920s, immigration was almost entirely choked off, and the 1930s had the lowest immigration in the last 100 years. So there should have been low unemployment and high wages, right? Wrong! We had the Great Depression, with 25 percent unemployment, and miserable wages for those who could find jobs. Then, as now, some people blamed immigrants, as well as Blacks, Jews and probably sunspots, for the disaster.
Beck’s next point: Without any net immigration, the U.S. population will continue to grow until about 2030, when it will level off. But if we continue with the present net immigration of 1 million per year, population will grow indefinitely. Immigrants are severely straining our resources — in California alone, a new school is being built every day. This is a burden on hard-working American taxpayers.
In fact, in the late 1950s and 1960s, a rapidly growing population, fueled by the baby boom, put strains on schools across the country. But a growing U.S. economy was able to pay for more schools and teachers, as well as greatly expanded access to higher education. Real wages were increasing, there was a significant reduction in poverty, and major social programs (like Medicare and Medicaid) were implemented.
The high local taxes paid by working families are caused, first of all, by a regressive financing system that puts most of the cost of education and other services on local communities. In other developed countries, these costs are borne by the national government, providing more equality in these services.
Beck talks about other real problems, including economic insecurity, urban sprawl and barriers to economic progress by African Americans. These problems have increased in the last 30 years. So has immigration. Does that mean, as Beck claims, that immigration is the cause?
This seems plausible only because there is a common cause: the capitalist system driven by private corporate profits. Neoliberal policies that have removed all controls from multinational corporate activity are responsible for increased immigration, as well as U.S. workers’ economic insecurity. A global conglomerate drives Mexican peasants off their land, forcing them to risk death to look for work here. The same conglomerate closes urban factories in the U.S., moving production abroad and setting up distribution warehouses in suburban and rural areas in the U.S. where property taxes are low. The impact has been aggravated by the Bush administration’s priorities which increase the burden on working families and their communities while cutting taxes for the wealthy, waging an unnecessary, expensive and destructive war, and placing corporate profits ahead of the public good.
People are looking for a way out. Blaming immigration is not it.
In the Depression, some used racism, anti-Semitism and anti-immigrant sentiment to advocate a fascist solution. But the victims of the economic crisis organized with the slogan, “Black and white, unite and fight,” and won unemployment insurance and Social Security. They marched and voted to win the New Deal, which put millions to work constructing schools, bridges and highways. As a result of unionization of major industries, wages and working conditions improved despite high unemployment.
Today, immigrants and U.S.-born workers — Black, white and Latino — are joining together in a host of struggles. If we reject anti-immigration diversions, we can take a lesson from the 1930s, and “unite and fight” for the people’s needs.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Lou sharing his Mexican Cuisine with Mr. Joe Baca. What a great chef you are Lou.Another pathetic lie from the Clown
CBS) On the May 6, 2007 edition of 60 Minutes, Lou Dobbs told Lesley Stahl about a meeting he had with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Rep. Joe Baca, the Chair of the CHC, sent 60 Minutes this letter in response.
On Behalf of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), I write to express our deep concern about the comments made by CNN's Lou Dobbs during an interview on CBS's 60 Minutes.
This past Sunday, on 60 Minutes, CNN personality Lou Dobbs commented on a meeting he had with the CHC in March of 2004. His recollection presented on your program, however, clearly took our meeting out of context, misrepresenting the meeting's purpose and context. Moreover, Mr. Dobbs continuously misrepresents both the Hispanic community and the issue of immigration with half truths and harmful rhetoric.
Regrettably, Mr. Dobbs' comments on your show do not reflect the true nature of the discussion at our meeting. Instead, the meeting focused on the negative portrayal of Hispanics on Mr. Dobbs' program and on immigration reform. Sadly, Mr. Dobbs' recent comments are just one example of how he continues to belittle Hispanic Members of Congress and the Hispanic community.
The CHC believes it is inappropriate and unacceptable for Mr. Dobbs to continue to exploit the issue of immigration—seemingly for notoriety and ratings. If he is sincere in his concern for our country's broken immigration system and those it puts at risk, he should use his program to address the issue of immigration. However, if Mr. Dobbs is sincere in wanting to move our nation forward on the issue, he should use his program as a means to facilitate a legitimate and complete debate on our broken immigration system, including a discussion on immigrants' contributions to our nation. Sadly, Mr. Dobbs appears more concerned with ratings and publicity, than with actually being a part of the solution.
The fact of the matter remains—our nation's immigration system is broken. It needs to be fixed, and needs to be done so with a comprehensive plan that is both practical and just. However, our country will not arrive at a solution without fair, honest, and respectful debate on the issue.
It is in this light that we ask for you help to clear the record on the air. Specifically, we want to relay that the CHC did not meet with Mr. Dobbs to discuss his Mexican cuisine experiences, but to respectfully recommend that he cease the negative portrayal of Hispanics on his show and that treat the issue of immigration in a responsible manner.
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Another Law Breaker and criminal- The Minuteman Express by Jim Gilchrist
Lou why you do not invite Mr. Jim Gilchrist to discuss this information on your show? Or you dont want to put more bizarre on your lap eh?. You need to expose the both sides of the subject
Minuteman Project president, Jim Gilchrist, says California Coalition for Immigration Reform (CCIR) member may be smuggling illegal weapons into California
May 12, 2007 — Minuteman Project founder and president, Jim Gilchrist, said today that investigations are continuing into the disgruntled former members of his organization who illegally tried to seize his organization in February. Allegations are that an investigation of possible illegal gun dealing may also involve a well-known immigration law advocacy group from Huntington Beach, Ca.
“It has been brought to my attention that Scott Powelson, a close friend and associate of Barbara Coe, the leader of the California Coalition for Immigration Reform (CCIR), was apparently observed purchasing an illegal assault rifle in Nevada and smuggling that weapon into California recently.”
Powelson, one of the hijackers who failed in an attempt to overthrow and seize Gilchrist’s Minuteman Project, was removed from the Minuteman Project membership in late January after he refused to provide Gilchrist with his social security number. The information was needed for the filing of federal and state compensation reports required for payments to sub-contractors of $600, or more, annually. Powelson received over $8,100 from the Minuteman Project, Gilchrist said. “He wouldn’t provide the information required by tax laws for sub-contractors, so I terminated his contract…and his membership. He was not happy about that.”
According to Gilchrist, two Minuteman Project membership recruiting consultants accompanied Powelson to Las Vegas last November. In their presence Powelson purchased what he later described as “an illegal weapon” that he intended to bring into California. The witnesses said Powelson wrapped the military-style weapon in a blanket and hid it in the back of his truck’s camper shell. According to the consultants, the purchase was also witnessed by a male companion of Powelson, identified only as “Tom,” a known anti-Semitic who Gilchrist had banned from the Minuteman Project.
Later that week Powelson brought the weapon to the Tustin residence of Deborah Peterson (alias Deborah Courtney), 55, and passed it around for inspection. “It’s illegal as all Hell,” he laughed as he handed the weapon to Tim Bueler, 19, who was living at Peterson’s home at the time. Bueler said he “moved out of Peterson’s place” very soon after the incident with the weapon. “They are crazy,” Bueler said, “to be fooling around with illegal guns.”
Also handling the weapon was Deborah Peterson’s live-in boyfriend, Paul Sielski, 40, a fugitive wanted by Maryland law enforcement authorities. Sielski, a convicted wife-beater, has since been arrested by clever deputies from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department fugitive task force. He is scheduled for extradition to Maryland on May 16 where he faces up to 20 years in prison, apparently for fleeing prosecution for other crimes.
Bueler said he did not know if the weapon Powelson handed him was a semi-automatic or an automatic (machinegun) weapon. He said only that Powelson told him “It is illegal as all Hell.”
The two consultants for Gilchrist did not purchase any guns, nor do they own any. Gilchrist was informed by the consultants of what they thought appeared to be alleged gun smuggling on February 25, 2007. He immediately contacted Costa Mesa Police, since Powelson uses an address in the 700 block of Joann St. in Costa Mesa as his residence. Powelson also claims to own a home in Arizona and a residence in Nevada. Also, he claims to have a driver’s license issued by Nevada. Telephone calls about the incident were also made to the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF).
When asked why the consultants waited so long to tell Gilchrist about Powelson’s assault weapon, Gilchrist said “They were scared. One of them is a 19-year-old kid who needed a place to live and who was told ‘keep your mouth shut’. The other witness really believed he would be harmed (shot) if he spoke up about it. Eventually, I coached them into ‘fessing up’ about it.”
This revelation brings serious questions about the involvement, if any, that immigration law advocacy groups like the California Coalition for Immigration Reform (CCIR) may have with the smuggling of illegal weaponry into California. It is unknown if Powelson brought only one illegal weapon into California, or many.
“It begs the question: How many?” Gilchrist asked. “And where would those weapons be and what might be their purpose? Finally, what other contraband might be coming into California under the guise of an ‘immigration law enforcement activist group’?”
“After all,” he added, “how can immigration law advocates insist on immigration law enforcement if some of the activists might be blatantly breaking serious laws themselves?”
Saturday, May 26, 2007
The reason for collecting this info from viewers is actually because Dobbs could not get this info from the gov't. Not surpringly, they also have no numbers on the number of jobs that are given away to foreigners right here in America:
Interview With Labor Secretary Elaine Chao
DOBBS: The White House today said the decline in the unemployment rate to 6 percent is evidence that President Bush's tax cuts are working. Lou currently 4.5 percent..
Joining me now for more on labor is the secretary of the Department of Labor, Elaine Chao.
Good to have you with us, Secretary.
ELAINE CHAO, SECRETARY OF LABOR: Nice to be here. Thank you.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, these numbers surprised most economists, 6 percent. Do you believe this means that the economy has turned, that now we're going to see substantial job creation?
CHAO: I think the labor market rebound has begun in earnest.
And the numbers are actually more positive than you paint. In the last three months, there have been 287,000 new jobs; 126,000 new jobs was created in the last month, far surpassing expectations of 65,000 new jobs. And then, last month, I had announced that 57,000 new jobs were created. And the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which produces these numbers, went back and revised the data based on actual results. And we found that, in fact, over the past three months, job creation has been more robust than had been expected.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, you better get that whip out and fix those people over at BLS, so they get those numbers right the first time.
CHAO: They do a wonderful job. They do a wonderful job. But it's just the nature. These revisions occur all the time. And, as you well know, we have revisions twice a year as well, on top of the monthly revisions.
And while everyone is pleased to see this unemployment rate come down, and we all hope that it will come down more, there's still nine million Americans out of work in this country, two million of them long-term unemployed. These numbers and the 126,000 jobs created last week, most of them were the retail sector. They were not high-paying jobs. These are lower-paying jobs, for the most part. But the good news is... Where did you get this information Lou? Why do not mention the source? Numbersusa?Broderpatrol? Minuteman Groups? or you making up numbers again?
CHAO: But that's not really true.
DOBBS: I beg your pardon?
CHAO: That's not really true.
Of the long-term unemployed, that number has dropped as well in the past month. So we are beginning to see a drop in the long-term unemployed. We saw a drop in the number of jobless claims filed. That is a leading indicator. The unemployment rate is a lagging indicator. And even that has shown that there's been a drop from 6.1 percent to 6 percent. And then, as a leading indicator, the jobless claims have fallen again to well over 380,000. So with GDP growth of the last quarter hitting well over 7.2 percent, and having productivity increases over 8.1 percent, which are phenomenal numbers, clearly, the economy is in full gear and the labor market...
DOBBS: Full gear?
CHAO: I think it's very strong.
DOBBS: Full gear?
CHAO: It's very strong.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, if I may argue with you, then.
DOBBS: We have to create 150,000 jobs just to keep pace with population growth. We have 6 percent unemployment. We're far from being in full gear, Secretary Chao.
CHAO: Well, full gear means that the economy is fully engaged.
DOBBS: I understand what it means.
CHAO: Thank you.
What it also means is that, again, with GDP growth of 7.2 percent and a productivity growth of 8.1 percent, the productivity growth cannot continue at this level without creating permanent jobs. We're also seeing increases in temporary help supply. That's, again, a precursor to permanent hiring.
CHAO: And we're also seeing the average number of hours worked increase.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, if I may...
DOBBS: We're losing hundreds of thousands jobs to outsourcing as well. We have 10 million illegal aliens in the country. The Labor Department is doing absolutely nothing on the issue of . Lou do not mention the source how many jobs were outsourcing and he rumbling on the numbers of unlawful inmigrants from 10, 12 and know 20 millions. What a pathetic liar.
CHAO: Oh, that's not true at all. Lou, you know better than that. The Labor Department does a lot of things.
DOBBS: Let me give you a couple of examples, if I may, Secretary Chao. For example, we went through a number, with the Department of Labor, to get some sort of sense of who is tracking this. We are told that the Department of Labor will fully support illegal aliens in their labor -- legal issues.
CHAO: I'm not so sure who you were talking to, Lou.
But, clearly, this is a larger issue, the whole issue of illegal immigrants, than just Labor Department.
CHAO: We serve the work force. And for people who are out of work, we have $12 billion publicly funded work force training program.
We also spend about $58 billion in unemployment insurance. For the illegal immigrant that you're talking about, H-1B visas, for example, which I think some of your people may have alluded to, that has a cap of 66,000 annually. So it's a very small part of the whole work force.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, I personally wanted this to be just a wonderful, congratulatory discussion.
CHAO: Well, thank you.
DOBBS: But since you -- if you want to be confrontational, let me bring
CHAO: No, not at all.
DOBBS: Give me the Labor Department's best report, if you will, on the number of H-1B and L-1 visa holders in this country right now and for whom they're working. He mention many times that he is not against legal Inmigrant. So what's the purpose to question this information Lou
CHAO: H-1B visas has an annual cap now of 66,000. And that has been actually underutilized because of the high-tech situation.
DOBBS: Secretary Chao, I asked how many are in the country now working and where? Does the Labor Department have any idea?
CHAO: No. We have a work force of 146,000. So I can't tell you that.
DOBBS: One hundred forty-six.
CHAO: We do not track that. But, annually, it's a 66,000 ceiling.
DOBBS: Right. Secretary Chao, I congratulate you on what I hope and we all hope is a wonderful turn in the employment situation in this country. CHAO: Thank you.
Well, we want to help every worker that's out of work, as the president has said. We are optimistic, but not complacent. Every person -- we want to make sure that every person who wants a job will indeed get one.
DOBBS: We're with you all the way.
CHAO: Thank you.
DOBBS: Thank you very much, Elaine Chao, secretary of the Department of Labor.
Lou why you never show the other side of the unemployment rather than just blame unlawful inmigrants? Why you are not report how many womans after pregnancy desire to stay home and not go back to work? This is part of the unemployment rating, people desire to go back to school? people who who had been injuried? people who desire to establish their own business? Why you are not exposed the numbers for people just looking a real job? or you making up the numbers base on the people are outside of the freeways looking for a job? all of this is part of the equation of unemployment. Why you have not exposed the both side of the subject?
Just look at this link and see for yourself the behavior from the Minuteman group.http://www.minutemenunvarnished.com/minutesite/home.html
Friday, May 25, 2007
Lou loves to call undocumented workers "law breakers". His family is not far away from that reality. Although undocumented workers rarely had the intention of hurting any person when they broke the law, what was Lou's wife doing with a gun at the airport? It is old news but worth reading.Dobbs' wife arrested for having handgun at Newark airport
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — The wife of CNN host Lou Dobbs was arrested at Newark Liberty International Airport on Wednesday for having a loaded handgun in her handbag, authorities said.
Debi Dobbs, 49, of Sussex, was arrested at the security checkpoint at Terminal C after the gun was discovered, according to Allen Morrison, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the airport.
She was arrested at 3:15 p.m. without incident, Morrison said. Debi Dobbs was charged with criminal possession of a weapon and released on her own recognizance.
A spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration said they were trying to determine the caliber of the gun.
Morrison said Debi Dobbs did not tell officers why she had the gun.
Debi Dobbs was at the airport to board a flight to Florida, authorities said. Christa Robinson, a CNN spokeswoman, confirmed that Debi Dobbs is the wife of Lou Dobbs, the host of that network's nightly business show Lou Dobbs Tonight
Robinson said Lou Dobbs was not available for comment. He was not with his wife at the airport.
Lou are you part of the Minuteman Group or Patriot Citizens? That's why you are against guns control measure? or you want to take the law on your own hands?
SHOCKER : Lou Dobb's wife is Mexican-American
This evening on CBS's "60 Minutes" Lesley Stahl interviewed the CNN anti-Mexican xenophobe Lou Dobbs. At one point in the interview Ms. Stahl commented, ". . . 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."
This is quite a shock to many Mexican immigrants who have learned to dislike Dobbs because of his constant hate-mongering against what he calls criminal illegal aliens. He recently insinuated that America has the capability of rounding up all undocumented Mexicans and deporting them. Dobbs has become the "hero" of anti-Mexican xenophobes around the country.
Lou Dobbs has twin daughters with Debi whose maiden name is Segura. Mexican blood runs in the veins of his daughters, Hillary and Heather, yet he never mentions this on his anti-immigration CNN shows.
Lou and Debi Dobbs resides on a 300-acre horse farm in Sussex County, New Jersey with her Mexican parents and his mother. Leslie Stahl showed the parents of his wife and they looked totally Mexican.
About 4 years ago Debi Dobbs was arrested at the Newark Liberty International Airport after airport security found a loaded gun she was carrying in her handbag. She was charged with criminal possession of a weapon. After being fingerprinted and photographed by Port Authority Police, Debi Dobbs was released without bail. Mrs. Dobbs faced arraignment in a Newark court but the outcome of the case is not generally known
Lou Dobbs not only doesn't like Inmigrants at all but he promoting and funding other Anti Inmigrants groups. Just look at his most daily rethorics comments. Hosting segment from Hazleton, Pa., Dobbs did not acknowledge fundraising for the embattled town
Summary: During his Lou Dobbs Tonight "special report" on the efforts of the city of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, to combat illegal immigration, Lou Dobbs praised a controversial anti-immigrant ordinance passed by the city, but he did not mention that, during the segment, he was promoting, on the show's CNN website, a website soliciting money for Hazleton's legal fund.On the May 2 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, host Lou Dobbs reported from Hazleton, Pennsylvania, for a "special report" called "Broken Borders," which he said, "examine[d] [Hazleton's] efforts to deal with the harsh realities of illegal immigration." On June 13, 2006, Hazleton passed the "Illegal Immigration Relief Act," drafted by the city's mayor, Lou Barletta, a controversial ordinance that sought to suspend the permits of local businesses and others for employing "unlawful workers" and landlords for renting to "illegal aliens." The measure, which was slated to go into effect in September 2006, was suspended in October of that year, after several groups, including the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), challenged the legislation. At no point during what Dobbs called "a very special hour" did he mention that, on the Lou Dobbs Tonight website, he had been promoting a solicitation for donations to Hazleton's legal defense fund.
From the special "Broken Borders" broadcast on the May 2 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight:
DOBBS: The national media, if I may say, appears hell-bent on obfuscating the issue, frequently equating legal immigration with illegal immigration. But the facts are clear. There are as many as 20 million people in this country illegally.it's not what he labeled them as a Illegal Aliens? Why he change his mind?
And the Bush administration and the Democratic leadership on Capitol Hill seem determined to impose a massive illegal alien amnesty on American citizens, with little or no regard for the consequences.
Communities such as Hazleton are now taking action on their own, precisely because the federal government has failed to secure our borders or to enforce our immigration laws.
Later, Dobbs interviewed Barletta, who talked about the ordinance's impact:
BARLETTA: It was amazing, Lou. Immediately after we passed the ordinance, we witnessed many people leaving in the middle of the night, actually packing up their belongings and leaving.
So, you know, we would -- it would be fair to assume that those that left so quickly were illegal aliens who were just fleeing to another city.
Dobbs praised Barletta's efforts, stating, "Hazleton, the community, is leading the battle against illegal immigration, stepping in where the federal government has simply failed to perform its duty."
Yet, Dobbs neglected to mention that, during the segment, he was promoting solicitations to the town's legal fund. On his show's website, Dobbs posted a link to Small Town Defenders, a site hosted by Barletta that solicits money for the city's legal fight against MALDEF and the ACLU.
At the top of Barletta's site, he implores visitors to donate: "We need your help! Your contribution will help us win this fight!"
The Associated Press reported that, as of May 5, Hazleton has raised $266,000 in private donations.
According to a separate AP report published May 4, after receiving a letter from the National Institute for Latino Policy, CNN chief executive Jim Walton removed the link to Small Town Defenders.
During its May 6 profile of Dobbs, CBS' 60 Minutes did not mention that Dobbs had been promoting solicitations for Hazleton's legal fund. At the end of its segment, however, CBS acknowledged that Dobbs had taken on a new role: "While [correspondent Lesley] Stahl was talking to Dobbs, unbeknownst to 60 Minutes, he was talking to CBS News and has now joined The Early Show as a weekly commentator."
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Lou the 14th Admenment is the Civil Rights for all Cirizens Lawful or Unlawful. I see how you love to intimidate and retaliate other people.
We encourage and accept good faith questions and challenges to conduct that may run counter to the standars and we will not retaliate against those who raise or assert them. Lou you failling to comply with the Journalism and your Company Principles.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Monday, May 21, 2007
The History that Americans dont want to recognized.. Specially you Lou Dobss.. COURSING through the immigration debate is the unexamined faith that American history rests on English bedrock, or Plymouth Rock to be specific. Jamestown also gets a nod, particularly in the run-up to its 400th birthday, but John Smith was English, too (he even coined the name New England).
So amid the din over border control, the Senate affirms the self-evident truth that English is our national language; "It is part of our blood," Lamar Alexander, Republican of Tennessee, says. Border vigilantes call themselves Minutemen, summoning colonial Massachusetts as they apprehend Hispanics in the desert Southwest. Even undocumented immigrants invoke our Anglo founders, waving placards that read, "The Pilgrims didn't have papers."
These newcomers are well indoctrinated; four of the sample questions on our naturalization test ask about Pilgrims. Nothing in the sample exam suggests that prospective citizens need know anything that occurred on this continent before the Mayflower landed in 1620. Few Americans do, after all.
This national amnesia isn't new, but it's glaring and supremely paradoxical at a moment when politicians warn of the threat posed to our culture and identity by an invasion of immigrants from across the Mexican border. If Americans hit the books, they'd find what Al Gore would call an inconvenient truth. The early history of what is now the United States was Spanish, not English, and our denial of this heritage is rooted in age-old stereotypes that still entangle today's immigration debate.
Forget for a moment the millions of Indians who occupied this continent for 13,000 or more years before anyone else arrived, and start the clock with Europeans' presence on present-day United States soil. The first confirmed landing wasn't by Vikings, who reached Canada in about 1000, or by Columbus, who reached the Bahamas in 1492. It was by a Spaniard, Juan Ponce de León, who landed in 1513 at a lush shore he christened La Florida.
Most Americans associate the early Spanish in this hemisphere with Cortés in Mexico and Pizarro in Peru. But Spaniards pioneered the present-day United States, too. Within three decades of Ponce de León's landing, the Spanish became the first Europeans to reach the Appalachians, the Mississippi, the Grand Canyon and the Great Plains. Spanish ships sailed along the East Coast, penetrating to present-day Bangor, Me., and up the Pacific Coast as far as Oregon.
From 1528 to 1536, four castaways from a Spanish expedition, including a Moor, journeyed all the way from Florida to the Gulf of California — 267 years before Lewis and Clark embarked on their much more renowned and far less arduous trek. In 1540, Francisco Vázquez de Coronado led 2,000 Spaniards and Mexican Indians across today's Arizona-Mexico border — right by the Minutemen's inaugural post — and traveled as far as central Kansas, close to the exact geographic center of what is now the continental United States. In all, Spaniards probed half of today's lower 48 states before the first English tried to colonize, at Roanoke Island, N.C.
The Spanish didn't just explore, they settled, creating the first permanent European settlement in the continental United States at St. Augustine, Fla., in 1565. Santa Fe, N.M., also predates Plymouth: later came Spanish settlements in San Antonio, Tucson, San Diego and San Francisco. The Spanish even established a Jesuit mission in Virginia's Chesapeake Bay 37 years before the founding of Jamestown in 1607.
Two iconic American stories have Spanish antecedents, too. Almost 80 years before John Smith's alleged rescue by Pocahontas, a man by the name of Juan Ortiz told of his remarkably similar rescue from execution by an Indian girl. Spaniards also held a thanksgiving, 56 years before the Pilgrims, when they feasted near St. Augustine with Florida Indians, probably on stewed pork and garbanzo beans.
The early history of Spanish North America is well documented, as is the extensive exploration by the 16th-century French and Portuguese. So why do Americans cling to a creation myth centered on one band of late-arriving English — Pilgrims who weren't even the first English to settle New England or the first Europeans to reach Plymouth Harbor? (There was a short-lived colony in Maine and the French reached Plymouth earlier.)
The easy answer is that winners write the history and the Spanish, like the French, were ultimately losers in the contest for this continent. Also, many leading American writers and historians of the early 19th century were New Englanders who elevated the Pilgrims to mythic status (the North's victory in the Civil War provided an added excuse to diminish the Virginia story). Well into the 20th century, standard histories and school texts barely mentioned the early Spanish in North America.
While it's true that our language and laws reflect English heritage, it's also true that the Spanish role was crucial. Spanish discoveries spurred the English to try settling America and paved the way for the latecomers' eventual success. Many key aspects of American history, like African slavery and the cultivation of tobacco, are rooted in the forgotten Spanish century that preceded English arrival.
There's another, less-known legacy of this early period that explains why we've written the Spanish out of our national narrative. As late as 1783, at the end of the Revolutionary War, Spain held claim to roughly half of today's continental United States (in 1775, Spanish ships even reached Alaska). As American settlers pushed out from the 13 colonies, the new nation craved Spanish land. And to justify seizing it, Americans found a handy weapon in a set of centuries-old beliefs known as the "black legend."
The legend first arose amid the religious strife and imperial rivalries of 16th-century Europe. Northern Europeans, who loathed Catholic Spain and envied its American empire, published books and gory engravings that depicted Spanish colonization as uniquely barbarous: an orgy of greed, slaughter and papist depravity, the Inquisition writ large.
Though simplistic and embellished, the legend contained elements of truth. Juan de Oñate, the conquistador who colonized New Mexico, punished Pueblo Indians by cutting off their hands and feet and then enslaving them. Hernando de Soto bound Indians in chains and neck collars and forced them to haul his army's gear across the South. Natives were thrown to attack dogs and burned alive.
But there were Spaniards of conscience in the New World, too: most notably the Dominican priest Bartolomé de Las Casas, whose defense of Indians impelled the Spanish crown to pass laws protecting natives. Also, Spanish brutality wasn't unique; English colonists committed similar atrocities. The Puritans were arguably more intolerant of natives than the Spanish and the Virginia colonists as greedy for gold as any conquistador. But none of this erased the black legend's enduring stain, not only in Europe but also in the newly formed United States.
"Anglo Americans," writes David J. Weber, the pre-eminent historian of Spanish North America, "inherited the view that Spaniards were unusually cruel, avaricious, treacherous, fanatical, superstitious, cowardly, corrupt, decadent, indolent and authoritarian."
When 19th-century jingoists revived this caricature to justify invading Spanish (and later, Mexican) territory, they added a new slur: the mixing of Spanish, African and Indian blood had created a degenerate race. To Stephen Austin, Texas's fight with Mexico was "a war of barbarism and of despotic principles, waged by the mongrel Spanish-Indian and other race, against civilization and the Anglo-American race." It was the manifest destiny of white Americans to seize and civilize these benighted lands, just as it was to take the territory of Indian savages.
From 1819 to 1848, the United States and its army increased the nation's area by roughly a third at Spanish and Mexican expense, including three of today's four most populous states: California, Texas and Florida. Hispanics became the first American citizens in the newly acquired Southwest territory and remained a majority in several states until the 20th century.
By then, the Legend had begun to fade. But it seems to have found new life among immigration's staunchest foes, whose rhetoric carries traces of both ancient Hispanophobia and the chauvinism of 19th-century expansionists.
Representative J. D. Hayworth of Arizona, who calls for deporting illegal immigrants and changing the Constitution so that children born to them in the United States can't claim citizenship, denounces "defeatist wimps unwilling to stand up for our culture" against alien "invasion." Those who oppose making English the official language, he adds, "reject the very notion that there is a uniquely American identity, or that, if there is one, that it is superior to any other."
Representative Tom Tancredo of Colorado, chairman of the House Immigration Reform Caucus, depicts illegal immigration as "a scourge" abetted by "a cult of multiculturalism" that has "a death grip" on this nation. "We are committing cultural suicide," Mr. Tancredo claims. "The barbarians at the gate will only need to give us a slight push, and the emaciated body of Western civilization will collapse in a heap."
ON talk radio and the Internet, foes of immigration echo the legend more explicitly, typecasting Hispanics as indolent, a burden on the American taxpayer, greedy for benefits and jobs, prone to criminality and alien to our values — much like those degenerate Spaniards of the old Southwest and those gold-mad conquistadors who sought easy riches rather than honest toil. At the fringes, the vilification is baldly racist. In fact, cruelty to Indians seems to be the only transgression absent from the familiar package of Latin sins.
Also missing, of course, is a full awareness of the history of the 500-year Spanish presence in the Americas and its seesawing fortunes in the face of Anglo encroachment. "The Hispanic world did not come to the United States," Carlos Fuentes observes. "The United States came to the Hispanic world.
America has always been a diverse and fast-changing land, home to overlapping cultures and languages. It's an homage to our history, not a betrayal of it, to welcome the latest arrivals, just as the Indians did those tardy and uninvited Pilgrims who arrived in Plymouth not so long ago.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
Dobbs refused to correct debunked leprosy statistic -- will Boyles?
Summary: On his May 7 broadcast, CNN host Lou Dobbs backed the veracity of his report citing "7,000 cases of leprosy" reported in the last three years in the United States, despite federal health statistics that state otherwise. Colorado Media Matters noted when a guest on Peter Boyles' radio show made a similar assertion regarding "7,000 cases" of leprosy that government statistics contradict the figure, but Boyles -- a frequent guest on Dobbs' show -- as of May 9 had not corrected the claim.
Following a May 6 60 Minutes profile of CNN host and immigration critic Lou Dobbs that questioned the veracity of his report asserting "7,000 cases of leprosy in the U.S. in the past three years," Dobbs defended the figure's accuracy on his May 7 broadcast. However, as Colorado Media Matters noted when a guest on 630 KHOW-AM's The Peter Boyles Show made a similar claim, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) statistics contradict the "7,000 cases" claim. Boyles, who is a frequent guest on Dobbs' show, also had not corrected the figure as of May 9.
Additionally, during neither the 60 Minutes profile nor his May 7 report did Dobbs disclose that the "Dr. Madeleine Cosman" cited on his show as the source of the 7,000 figure was a conservative scholar of medieval medicine writing in the journal of a conservative medical organization, not a medical doctor citing the figure in peer-reviewed research. The bibliography of Cosman's article includes such sources as the website EagleForum.org hosted by conservative ideologue Phyllis Schlafly, the libertarian Cato Institute, and right-wing columnist and author Michelle Malkin.
During the 60 Minutes report, correspondent Lesley Stahl noted that in reporting on diseases illegal immigrants purportedly bring to the United States, Dobbs correspondent Christine Romans "told Dobbs that there have been 7,000 cases of leprosy in the U.S. in the past three years." Stahl added that "a report issued by [HHS]" stated that "7,000 is the number of leprosy cases over the last 30 years, not the past three. The report also says that nobody knows how many of those cases involve illegal immigrants." Dobbs responded, "Well, I can tell you this. If we reported it, it's a fact." When Stahl asked how he could "guarantee" the accuracy of the figure, Dobbs replied, "Because I'm the managing editor. And that's the way we do business. We don't make up numbers, Lesley."
The figure Romans cited was also touted by Boyles guest Patricia Doyle, who on his September 20, 2006, broadcast asserted, "We once had 900 cases in 40 years -- the U.S. had 900 leprosy cases. In three years, recently -- for three years -- we've had 7,000 cases."
In fact, according to HHS, fewer than 200 cases of leprosy -- also known as Hansen's disease -- have been reported in the United States each year since 1995. As the HHS website states:
In the U.S., there are approximately 6,500 cases on the National Hansen's Disease Program Registry. This includes all cases reported since the registry began and who are still living.
Furthermore, a 2005 HHS graph showing reported new leprosy cases in the United States since 1976 indicated that the annual number of new cases has remained below 200 since 1995. The same graph shows a total of 7,029 reported leprosy cases in the U.S. from 1976 through 2005.
HHS also states, "A total of 166 cases were reported to the National Hansen's Disease Registry (NHDR) in 2005, representing a > 20% increase over the number of cases reported in the previous year (2004, n=131). This clearly reverses the declining trend in registered cases seen in recent years." Similarly, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated in a June 16, 2006, report ("Summary of Notifiable Diseases -- United States, 2004") that "[t]he number of reported cases of Hansen disease (HD) in the United States peaked at 361 in 1985 and has declined since 1988."
According to CNN's transcript, Romans said during Dobbs' May 7 broadcast that she was quoting the "7,000 cases of leprosy" statistic from "Dr. Madeline (sic) Cosman, a respected medical lawyer and medical historian writing in the 'Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons.' " Romans apparently was referring to an article titled "Illegal Aliens and American Medicine" by Madeleine Pelner Cosman in the Spring 2005 issue of Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons. The article included a sentence reading, "Suddenly, in the past three years America has more than 7,000 cases of leprosy," but did not carry a footnote citing the figure's source. The journal is published by the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, a conservative organization of medical professionals who, according to the website, "favor the restoration of a free market," which they claim "has not existed in American medicine for 60 years." The group also opposes Medicare and decries "socialized medicine."
According to her obituary in The New York Times, Cosman had a doctoral degree in English and comparative literature and was "a scholar of medieval medicine," not a physician. The obituary noted that Cosman, who died March 2, 2006, "worked as a health-care policy analyst" toward the end of her life and was an admirer of "Ayn Rand, whose libertarian ideas she embraced." In fact, Cosman was a research associate at the Objectivist Center, an organization that promotes Rand's philosophy of "objectivism." The bibliography to Cosman's article "Illegal Aliens and American Medicine" features numerous conservative sources. In addition to the Cato Institute, Eagle Forum, and Malkin, it lists the conservative Foundation for Economic Education, the conservative WND Books -- which publishes authors such as Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo (CO) and right-wing radio talk show host Michael Savage -- and the conservative think tank American Policy Center.
2004 Eugene Katz Award
To all of Lou Dobbs viewers just a few words on his speach.
Reporting on immigration is, as everybody here knows, extremely difficult, for some of the reasons that Congressman Tancredo suggested. And there are other reasons: one, because, as Mark pointed out, information . . . hard facts . . . empirical evidence . . . are often hard to come by. And I don’t mean just in the sense that the United States government does not maintain and report accurate numbers about the number of illegal aliens who cross our borders because obviously if they had that count, we probably wouldn’t have quite the problem that we do. But it goes to the issue of the economics, the social impact, and the ad hoc studies that spring up in various forms as to the impact or the benefit of illegal immigration. We continue to strive, daily, weekly, to put it together. Independent organizations such as yours, news organizations, special interest groups on both sides of the issue or all sides of the issue . . . but in fact that’s the first challenge. Challenge not accomplished by you Lou. You only informing the Inmigration one way. Your way.
The second challenge is breaking through what our little group of intrepid journalists refers to as the orthodoxy. There is a mindset in this country that first does not understand the perspective that they hold, and secondly don’t understand the values that they are adhering to, in both their view and analysis and judgement of social issues, important social issues, like immigration.
Lou what you predicate is not Journalism is Xenophobia, and bigotry populism.
I have a real problem with his failure to admit that his information is incorrect.
It does not matter whether you're conservative, liberal, progressive, libertarian or anywhere inbetween. It is critical that all politically aware individuals at no point accept biased bigoted or manipulated information from any source.
A Journalist has a responsibility first and foremost to present accurate and unmanipulated information to the public at large.To not do so is the equivalent to not allowing your reader his or her right to choose. One cannot truly choose if the data is incorrect.
The big problem that we in the USA have is that so much of the journalistic material has been systematically changed and manipulated for its targeted audience.
The crime on the part of the public is to allow this to go on.
There is no excuse for not immediately admitting to the falaciousness of the information.
It is no one's responsibility other than the disseminator to verify the accuracy of the information.
Dobbs should have immediately reinvestigated not only the information, but who gave it, the circumstances under which it was given, and whether it is inaccurate.
Shame on Dobbs for refusing to do so.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
CNN Stands By Lou Dobbs' Racist Fantasies.
Huffington Post blogger Bill Scher caught CNN's Lou Dobbs in a bit of an innocent mistake Tuesday night. Seems Dobbs' show was citing someone they shouldn't have been -- the Council of Conservative Citizens, a white supremacist group that descended from the White Citizens' Councils of the civil rights era.
Oh, come on - you didn't think CNN meant to tell their audience that a white supremacist group's rantings were credible, do you? After all, in a statement released to Greg Sargent on Wednesday, CNN told us it was just an accident:
A freelance field producer in Los Angeles searched the web for Aztlan maps and grabbed the Council of Conservative Citizens map without knowing the nature of the organization. The graphic was a late inclusion in the script and, regrettably, was missed in the vetting process.
Wait a second - something doesn't sound quite right. The only thing CNN apparently considers regrettable here is that they broadcast a map produced by the CCC; the fact that they were even looking for a map of "Aztlan" in the first place escapes notice.
So, seeking clarification, I talked with a CNN spokesperson, and asked specifically, "Does CNN stand by Casey Wian's statement of the same night that 'You could call this the Vicente Fox Aztlan tour, since the three states he'll visit, Utah, Washington, and California, are all part of some radical group's vision of the mythical indigenous homeland'? Second, does CNN stand by the accuracy of the statements made by Mr. Dobbs and some guests on his show that there is a 'reconquista' movement?" The spokesperson told me CNN feels there is no need for further clarification, and that it stands by the report. (I've offered them the chance to respond to this post if they feel it necessary - I will update or post again if they do so.)
CNN is trying to play this off as an isolated mistake. Don't be fooled: it's not. The fact that Dobbs and reporter Casey Wian showed the CCC map only makes the subtle pattern of racist fantasies given voice on Dobbs' show more visible. (By the way, relatively unnoticed - the same night Dobbs was citing the CCC, he was leaving unchallenged, even laughing along with, one guest's suggestion that in order to get rid of illegal Mexican immigrants New Yorkers should order pizza and then arrest the delivery person. Thanks, Lou. We'll get right on that.) For months now, Dobbs and Wian have been reporting on "reconquista" and "Aztlan" movements, movements that exist not in the minds of mainstream Mexicans but in the fever dreams of white supremacists. That Dobbs eventually aired material pulled directly from a white supremacist organization should surprise no one - when you're subtly citing them on a regular basis, the unfiltered truth is bound to bubble up at some point.
And make no mistake: reconquista is nothing more than a white supremacist fantasy. Indeed, according to journalist David Neiwert and the Southern Poverty Law Center, the term was first brought into the popular consciousness by Glenn Spencer, the leader of a white supremacist organization called the American Patrol. And though racists like Spencer and his cohorts in spreading this myth, like white supremacist affiliate Michelle Malkin, claim to have proof for their theories, that claim falls flat.
You'll hear proponents of the reconquista myth talking about Mexican immigrants who care more about Mexico than the United States, you'll hear them talking about Mexicans in pro-immigration protests carrying Mexican flags, you'll hear them talking about a "widespread" belief among Mexicans that the Southwestern U.S. used to belong to Mexico. (A belief, I should note, that is accurate - but what people like Dobbs, Spencer and Malkin always forget to mention is that noting that the Southwest used to belong to Mexico, which it did, is not the same as believing it should be part of Mexico again.)
What you won't hear them talking about is the Irish flags flying at Irish pubs here, or the Israeli flag that flew next to the U.S. flag in my old Hebrew school - actually, you probably will hear some of the supremacists, often no fans of Jews, talking about that - and you certainly won't hear anyone talking about the widespread flying of a certain flag representing a group that actually succeeded in taking over the southern part of this country:
(Map of the Confederacy, by the way, from PBS - see picture above.
And what you won't hear the proponents of the reconquista myth acknowledge is that this kind of rhetoric has remained essentially the same throughout U.S. history to demonize the groups. The only thing that's changed is who's being demonized - first it was the Catholics, like the Irish and the Italians (that one kept up for a while: as recently as 1960, JFK had to publicly deny that he was more loyal to the Pope than to the United States) then the Eastern Europeans, then the Japanese and Chinese. Each time, there was the era's Lou Dobbs, screaming that these new immigrants - the ancestors of nearly all of us "Americans" today - just plain refused to assimilate, to learn English, to be good Americans. And each time their complaints, steeped in racism, proved unfounded.
But even given that history, CNN apparently sees no need for fact-checking, sees no problem with letting Dobbs and guests rant unchallenged about Aztlan and reconquista as if they were legitimate topics instead of the latter-day version of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Accuracy be damned - ratings are up! Well, good for CNN. You've gotten at least one new supporter out of this whole thing.
"Welcome Lou Dobbs," the webmaster of the St. Louis chapter of CCC (which is headquartered in St. Louis) wrote on the chapter's blog on Thursday. "I knew you were one of us all along."
believe that using the press to to impose one’s view is not the role of journalist, you have a duty to inform the people of the pros and cons and not try to idealize the people by protraying that your opinion is that of the majority.
CNN is a well respected and trusted news media, some ignorant people believe anything they are told!
Lou do you realize that you are a grandson of an illegal immigrant? I think that people are fed up with you critisizing the illegal immigrants, and if CNN does not pay attention, they are going to lose their rating as a lot of people stop watching CNN when Lou Dobbs comes in.
Update: Wow, seems like I set off a bit of a comment firestorm here. Some people seem to be misunderstanding my position, so let me clarify a couple things. What I am is a person who is concerned by what I see as a pattern in the media of the transmission of white supremacist ideology, either through surrogates like Michelle Malkin, or through the treatment of those ideologies, like the myth of reconquista, as fact. And I think CNN, by standing by Dobbs here, is helping to perpetrate that myth and spread the ideology of some truly vile organizations. I've made the comparison before - it's as if he was reading the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the fake plan for Jewish world domination cited by Hitler and other anti-Semites, on the air and treating it as fact.
As for the idea that some commenters have brought up that Aztlan and reconquista are not myths: I'm aware of the sites that have been cited. And I'm aware of El Plan Espiritual de Aztlan, the founding document of MECHA that some misinterpret as a call to arms or a call for reconquista. It's not - you need to place it in the historical context of the time; the document is a call for self-esteem and self-reliance in the face of oppression, set in the tradition of thinkers like Frantz Fanon. As for the sites, I don't deny that there are some fringe groups out there calling for reconquista. But that's what they are - tiny, ultimately insignifcant groups at a far fringe, being seized on to propagate the ridiculous notion that this is some sort of mainstream thought. It's not. I can show you websites from people who believe that "since 1971-72, the world has lived under an Anglo-Dutch Liberal tyranny," but that doesn't mean a mass of people truly believe that. Having a website doesn't mean you should be taken seriously, and it certainly doesn't mean you represent anything but yourself.