Pat Robertson's Gift to the Chavez Propagandists
By Scott Burgess | The Daily Ablution
August 25, 2005 | Is this the end for Pat Robertson? Despite our sincere wishes to the contrary, probably not. After all, this is a person that still has a significant platform, despite comments like "feminism encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians", and, even more bizarrely, "Presbyterians are the spirit of the Antichrist" (who knew?).
His immediate impulse is toward cowardly dishonesty, as was made clear by his first response to the outcry over his Chavez assassination remarks. Fox news reports:
This is simply a lie, as Fox goes on to point out:
Mr. Robertson is, in short, an opportunistic liar - a perpetual embarrassment to thinking Americans on the (broadly defined) right and their supporters everywhere. Which is, of course, precisely why this story has received so much play. By casting Robertson as someone with "close links to the White House" - as Andrew Buncombe did in yesterday's Independent
- the left-wing press is able to implicitly project Robertson's comments onto the Administration (despite direct disavowal of the remarks by the Departments of State and Defense).
So Mr. Robertson has served the purpose of the Guardian/Independent media sector nicely, again providing them with the opportunity to embarrass "conservatives" generally, linked as we are to the likes of the televangelist and his supporters by tenuous agreement in one or two areas (but much more substantially in the eyes of many members of the public at large). He won't mind, of course - such contretemps simply strengthen his position as far as his audience is concerned, and his agenda also benefits.
Not only has the affair provided the opportunity for much leftie sneering, two days has proved more than adequate time for the composition of glowing propaganda profiles of Mr. Chavez - samples may be seen in both the Independent and Guardian today.
In the Indy, Johann Hari's completely uncritical piece paints a picture of the Venezuelan leader as being rather like Christ Himself, bringing hope to the hopeless and restoring the eyesight of the blind:
In contrast, Mr. Hari portrays Mr. Chavez's opponents ("Armani suit, Donna Karan dress") as foulmouthed racist plutocrats. So much for editorial balance.
Meanwhile, in the Guardian, erstwhile KGB "agent of influence" Richard Gott takes a similarly objective view. Mr. Robertson's outburst conveniently provides an opportunity for the former Soviet spy to expound a favourite theme most recently presented just this May, when he wrote (also in the Guardian):
It's not clear just how those who have been beaten by Mr. Chavez' secret police (for mingling with his political opponents), whose rights to engage in public protest have been curtailed, or whose childrens' schools were raided in an anti-Semitic assault (carried out during el Presidente's friendly visit to Iran) feel about the emergence of the resplendent butterfly. What is certain is that they will never be mentioned in the pages of the IndyGuardian.
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