Chomsky comrade and znet blogger Paul Street wrote this eveningabout driving through the midwestern United States and listening to local radio:
And so on…the usual and in-itself innocuous sporting drivel that rules the AM dial. What made this normal radio discussion stand out in such bold relief to me was of course the backdrop of the unfolding tsunami tragedy. Hearing all this trivial talk at this particular moment was vaguely reminiscent of the creepy sensation I got upon seeing my first television commercials after advertising was suspended for about week after 9/11/2001
My sports radio revulsion peaked during one particularly dramatic segment on WGN AM 710, a Chicago station. Three hours into my drive, I listened with amazement to the fervent, impassioned, and almost ranting discourse of a Houston Fox TV “Sports Director” on “a topic I have been living with night and day for the last 6 weeks.”
The question that has haunted this sports news coordinator for so long? Whether or not the Houston Astros (baseball) will be able to retain their bona-fide “five- tool” superstar Carlos Beltran at his “fair market rate” of $15 million a year for seven years. I said $15 million a year for seven years…for…playing baseball…(yes, the owners make more).
Does the figure $15 million sound familiar? That was George W. Bush’s initial offer to the tsunami victims, which later got shamed up to $35 million, where it still paled in comparison to the cost of the illegal and murderous occupation of Iraq – roughly $151 billion so far.
Like most moonbats, Street finds any possible route to connect what he hears with the desire of the United States to build an “empire” and any mention of money onto the “illegal and murderous occupation of Iraq” – even if those connections completely defy logic.
And then, to top it off, Street apparantly lacks the courage to actually call in and discuss any of this – particularly with “right wing radio”:
I thought about calling in and trying to make some moderately sane points about:
• the vastly disparate share of global resources that the US populace devours
• the equally vast and disparate share of global waste and pollution the US populace generates
• the ancient religious concept of tithing, which is based precisely on share of total wealth and not simply absolute amount
• the role of US neo-liberal global economic policy in impoverishing nations and people across the globe, helping make them immeasurably more vulnerable than they ought to be to the ravages of natural calamities like hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, mudslides, and tsunamis
• the relatively paltry and yes stingy size of America’s absolute humanitarian contribution, seen quite dramatically when it is compared to the “world’s richest nation’s” “defense” (empire) budget, including just its bloody and illegal occupation of Iraq (which has also killed more than 100,000 non-Americans) and/or to the gigantic tax cuts that George W. Bush has granted to his super-opulent ruling-class comrades
• the routinely selective U.S. application and denial of US economic and humanitarian assistance in accordance with imperial US political objectives and related ideological biases
Street also falls into the moonbat mode of the last few days of blaming as much of the Tsunami situation on the United States – and particularly George W. Bush – as possible.
I did find it humorous that Street posted this at 7:17pm EST and comments that we had only donated $35m to the Tsunami relief efforts when it was announced far earlier today that we had increased this amount to $350m. Wonder if any of his other facts are wrong?