quinta-feira, 7 de novembro de 2019

Quando será o próximo ataque contra a América Latina?

À CUT Brasil: https://www.cut.org.br/

À Marcha Mundial das Mulheres: https://www.marchamundialdasmulheres.org.br/

À Fundação Perseu Abramo: https://fpabramo.org.br/


Cerca de 14 anos se passaram desde a derrota da Área de Livre Comércio das Américas, ALCA, hoje vivenciamos nossas disputas sobre a soberania da América Latina. Fora debates sobre a conjuntura, sobre a ofensiva neoliberal no continente e a necessidade de somar forças para uma luta continental dos mais pobres e excluídos. Neste sentido nasceu a Jornada Continental pela Democracia e contra o Neoliberalismo em 4 de novembro de 2016. Hoje, 7 de Novembro de 2019 fazemos um balanço para o Encontro Anti-imperialista de solidariedade, pela democracia e contra o neoliberalismo. Comentamos sobre a Jornada, sobre a onda conservadora na América latina após a crise de 2008 e os levantes que estão ocorrendo agora, em 2019.

Desde o acordo de livre comércio entre o Mercosul e a União Europeia estamos assistindo por um lado a resistência dos trabalhadores e por outro lado a tentativa de barbárie das elites.

A ideia do acordo seria a liberação de mais de 90% do comércio de  bens, serviços, investimentos e compras governamentais com um gigantesco prejuízo aos nossos setores produtivos, com impacto na quantidade e na qualidade do emprego tanto na Europa quanto aqui na região do Mercosul.

Nesta parte da negociação foi preocupante a manutenção e a inclusão de instrumentos que beneficiariam as importações e prejudicariam a industria local. Isto colocaria em risco vários programas e projetos brasileiros criados na era Lula-Dilma, como por exemplo o caso dos medicamentos genéricos.

Produziria um impacto negativo em nosso crescimento econômico, já debilitado pela completa incapacidade, do atual governo, de gerir a máquina pública. A qualidade dos empregos e o crescimento das desigualdades já demonstra este fato. A redução da renda da classe trabalhadora, os vários desastres ambientais e a destruição do modelo desenvolvimentista também contribuem para um caos no momento atual e indicariam a destruição da indústria nacional com o possível acordo acima citado com a UE.

Em síntese, estamos lutando e sobrevivendo ao acordo, que temporariamente está congelado, mas que pode ser reacendido novamente para repetir o nefasto modelo que foi a ALCA (Área de Livre Comércio das Américas). Não desejamos ser apenas exportadores de commodities e importadores de produtos industrializados. Queremos desenvolver as nossas próprias tecnologia e negociar com nossos irmãos vizinhos num acordo que envolva a Pátria Grande e não entregar nossas pátrias para os grandes parasitas do mundo.

A verdade é que todos os trabalhadores devem se unir cada vez mais e lutar em conjunto. Isto demonstra que juntos somos fortes o suficiente para enfrentar o grande imperialismo que o tem como objetivo controlar e explorar nossos recursos naturais, tais como o Pré-Sal, as terras, a água, a biodiversidade etc, e desejam privatizar todo nosso  patrimônio público e nosso futuro.

Não voltaremos à condição de colônia nem admitiremos ser tratados como escravos. O Brasil é nosso. O Brasil é do seu povo.


Rio de Janeiro, 07 de novembro de 2019.

Adalton Mendonça.

sexta-feira, 25 de outubro de 2019

Qu'est ce que le PLU?

Qu'est ce que le PLU?

Plan local d'urbanisme

Le PLU est à la fois un document d'urbanisme réglementaire et un véritable projet de villeUn PLU est d'une part un document stratégique. Il comporte, comme un schéma directeur, des orientations sur l'évolution de la ville à l'horizon de 10 à 15 ans.
Il est d'autre part un document réglementaire : il régit l’évolution des parcelles, notamment à travers l'instruction des permis de construire et de démolir.
C'est en quelque sorte un "projet de ville", accompagné des règles sur lesquelles se fondent les décisions publiques et privées en matière d'urbanisme.
Le PLU comprend trois parties:
le rapport de présentation expose notamment le diagnostic sur la situation parisienne, en particulier en termes urbains; il analyse l'état actuel de l'environnement,
le projet d'aménagement et de développement durable (PADD) définit les orientations d'urbanisme à long terme et les aménagements retenus par la commune,
le règlement applique concrètement les orientations du projet par des règles générales déclinées localement.
Le PLU s'articule autour de trois objectifs indissociables :
Améliorer le cadre de vie de tous les Parisiens, en l'intégrant dans une conception de développement durable de l'urbanisme:

diminuer les nuisances quotidiennes de toute nature (pollutions de l'eau, de l'air et des sols, bruit)
défendre une nouvelle conception de la ville en matière de déplacements
réaliser davantage d'espaces verts
préserver le patrimoine architectural et urbain
Réduire les inégalités pour un Paris solidaire:

mettre en œuvre une nouvelle politique de l'habitat offrant une meilleure mixité sociale,
créer des équipements de proximité
adapter le temps de la ville aux temps qui rythment la vie des citadins (temps de travail, parental, de consommation, de déplacement et de loisirs)
défendre le commerce de proximité et la diversité commerciale
Développer la coopération intercommunale et affirmer les fonctions de Paris métropole au cœur de son agglomération:

couverture sur certaines portions du boulevard périphérique,
aménagement des portes de Paris,
réalisation d' un tramway sur le boulevard des Maréchaux,
développement économique de nouveaux secteurs, en liaison avec les communes limitrophes.
développement de programmes participant au rayonnement intellectuel et culturel de la capitale: création de pôles universitaires importants à Paris-Rive-Gauche et dans le nord-est parisien (le plan Universités pour le 3e Millénaire).
Le PLU s'harmonise avec les autres documents stratégiques pour l'aménagement du territoire
Il s'harmonise avec le programme local de l'habitat et le plan de déplacements urbains.
Où s'applique le PLU?
La réglementation s'applique à l'ensemble du territoire parisien, avec un régime spécifique pour les deux secteurs sauvegardés parisiens (Le Marais et une partie du 7e arrondissement).
Un guide d'application des dispositions environnementales du PLU
Le guide d'application des dispositions environnementales du PLU vise à apporter une aide aux pétitionnaires dans la compréhension de ces règles et leur traduction concrète dans les projets, et à les orienter dans la préparation de leurs dossiers de demande d’autorisation.
Ce guide ne porte que sur des interventions et travaux soumis à autorisation d’urbanisme. Pour s’informer sur des approches méthodologiques et techniques plus globales, le lecteur pourra se reporter à des documents complémentaires, auxquels les recommandations du présent guide font parfois référence.
Télécharger le Guide d’application des dispositions environnementales du PLU (lien de téléchargement)
Consulter toutes les enquêtes publiques modifiant le PLU
Toutes les enquêtes publiques modifiant le PLU
Consulter/télécharger le PLU applicable
Plan local d'urbanisme
Ce module dédié vous permet de:
consulter et télécharger les différents documents du PLU applicable au format pdf,
accéder à toutes les versions du PLU qui ont été en vigueur depuis juin 2006,
télécharger le PLU sous la forme d'un fichier Iso, que vous pouvez ensuite graver sur un DVD de manière à pouvoir ensuite consulter le PLU hors ligne.
PLU en anglais :
Pour faciliter l'appréhension des règles de construction applicables à Paris par les acteurs internationaux de larges extraits du règlement du PLU ont été traduits en langue anglaise.
Consulter et télécharger le document (format PDF : 7,88 Mo)
Visualiser le PLU à l'adresse
L'espace cartographique
L'espace cartographique vous permet de visualiser les documents graphiques du PLU, sur un secteur géographique ou sur une parcelle, de faire une recherche à l'adresse et de connaître le règlement applicable sur une parcelle.
Visualiser le PLU en mode plein écran
A noter : Le PLU présenté ici est la version en vigueur depuis le 27/08/2016.

Les renseignements d'urbanisme
Les renseignements d'urbanisme permettent une recherche à l'adresse ou à la parcelle et récapitulent sur une "notice" les règles du PLU applicables sur une parcelle.
Renseignements d'urbanisme
Comment lire le plan au 1/2000?
Une animation vous présente le détail des légendes du plan au 1/2000e de l'atlas du P.L.U. Vous pourrez ainsi facilement décoder l’ensemble des infos que vous trouverez sur ce plan. Laissez-vous guider ou consulter cette animation à votre rythme.

FONTE: https://www.paris.fr/pages/le-plan-local-d-urbanisme-plu-2329
























Paris est la capitale la plus verte d'Europe. Pourquoi nos villes n’ont-elles pas ce genre de planification urbaine?


Pourquoi nos villes n’ont-elles pas ce genre de planification urbaine? 

Commençons notre découverte rive gauche, au jardin du Luxembourg. Créé en 1612 à la demande de Marie de Médicis qui souhaitait s’éloigner des intrigues de la cour, installée alors à l’époque au Louvre, ce jardin de 25 hectares se compose d’une partie à la française et d’une partie à l’anglaise, séparées par la forêt géométrique des quinconces et un bassin octogonal. Le jardin connaîtra de nombreuses modifications au fil des siècles jusqu’aux grands travaux d'Haussmann qui lui donneront son tracé actuel. 



Le parc est riche de 106 statues disséminées dans ses allées, mais aussi de la magnifique fontaine Médicis, d’un verger, d’un rucher, de serres où se trouvent une magnifique collection d’orchidées et une roseraie. Et ses parterres de fleurs sont magnifiquement entretenus toute l’année par une équipe de 60 jardiniers, qui plantent amoureusement myosotis, giroflées, dahlias, bégonias et autres fleurs colorées et parfumées pour le plus grand plaisir des visiteurs. 



Très apprécié des touristes, le luco (surnom que lui donnent les Parisiens) reste toutefois un vrai lieu de vie et de loisir pour les Parisiens, qui sont nombreux à le prendre d’assaut dès le retour des beaux jours. Les activités ne manquent pas, entre terrains de tennis, boulodrome, échecs, bridge, mais aussi des concerts et des expositions de photos sur les grilles du jardin. Et les enfants ne sont pas en reste, avec toboggans, poneys, marionnettes ou encore les fameux bateaux télécommandés du bassin.


Direction plein Est ensuite pour se rendre au Parc floral de Paris. Au sein du bois de Vincennes, ce parc initialement créé dans les années 60 pour abriter les Floralies Internationales est l’œuvre de l’architecte Daniel Collin. L’architecture du parc s’inspire librement du style japonais, autant pour les 28 pavillons que pour le restaurant, lui donnant une personnalité bien particulière. 



Au gré de ces pavillons s’étalent collections de bonsaïs, d’orchidées, de fougères, mais aussi une des plus importantes collections d’iris avec plus de 1500 variétés, une pinède sous laquelle fleurissent d’immenses rhododendrons chatoyants ainsi que des camélias et des azalées. Au printemps, plus de 250 variétés de tulipes sont présentées et à l’automne, un concours international de dahlias offre d’exubérants parterres multicolores. Une invitation parfaite pour les promenades bucoliques.


Pour les enfants, le parc abrite une serre à papillons, un espace de jeu, un parcours aventure dans les arbres ou encore un théâtre de guignol tandis que les plus grands peuvent se laisser bercer tous les week-ends d’été par les mélodies du Paris Jazz Festival et du festival Classique au Vert ou tout simplement profiter des pelouses pour pique-niquer en famille. 


Avec un relief beaucoup plus vallonné, héritage des carrières de gypse et de pierre sur lesquelles il a été construit, le Parc des Buttes-Chaumont est né sous l’impulsion de Napoléon III, qui souhaitait transformer une zone malfamée et insalubre en somptueux jardin. Dès 1867, les Parisiens purent donc profiter de ce parc et de son lac au milieu duquel trône l’île du belvédère haute de 30 mètres et couronnée par le kiosque de la Sybille, en forme de temple gréco-romain.



Nombreux arbres, belles pelouses, massifs floraux, ponts suspendus, ruisseaux, cascade et grotte en font un des parcs les plus populaires et les plus appréciés par les familles et les bobos parisiens. Le parc offre de plus par sa situation une vue unique sur Paris depuis ses points les plus hauts.



Les pelouses, ici en libre accès, sont l’endroit idéal pour un pique-nique l’été, et les enfants peuvent profiter des aires de jeux, de tours en poneys, de balançoires ou batifoler dans les ruisseaux, sous la surveillance des parents.



Et pour les plus grands, Rosa Bonheur, un bar bucolique aménagé dans une maison au sommet du parc attire une faune branchée qui vient prendre l’apéro en dégustant des tapas jusqu’à la nuit. L’endroit où s’afficher une fois les beaux jours revenus, mais devenu tellement tendance qu’il est littéralement victime de son succès.



Ces trois parcs ne sont que quelques-uns des nombreux espaces verts qu’abrite la capitale. Et Paris compte aussi de nombreux jardins plus petits et confidentiels qui regorgent de charme. Profitez donc du retour des beaux jours pour aller vous prélasser dans l’herbe, bouquiner à l’ombre d’un arbre ou admirer la nature. Les jardins sont faits pour cela !





















domingo, 28 de julho de 2019

Le leader d’une communauté indigène a été tué la semaine dernière. Des orpailleurs clandestins sont suspectés de cette violente attaque commise au cœur d’une réserve protégée.



Par Claire Gatinois  Publié aujourd’hui à 22h49, mis à jour à 22h55
Le monde - France international - article 28/07/2019

Les indigènes ont parlé d’une cinquantaine d’orpailleurs clandestins, armés de fusils automatiques, prêts à les massacrer au nom d’une fortune aussi éphémère qu’illusoire, relatant la capture, la torture et la mort d’un des leurs. Dimanche 28 juillet, après vingt-quatre heures de tension et maints appels au secours lancés par la communauté Wajãpi, de la région de l’Amapa, à l’extrême nord du Brésil, à la frontière avec la Guyane française, la police fédérale et le bataillon de choc du Bope, ont lancé une opération dans le territoire indigène afin de mener l’enquête sur ces supposés crimes. Les forces de l’ordre comme la Funai, la fondation pour l’Indien, ont alors confirmé la mort du cacique Emyra Wajãpi, survenue le mardi précédent, ainsi que la présence de dix à quinze orpailleurs clandestins.

Dimanche, personne n’était encore en mesure de décrire avec précision les faits. Il n’y a eu aucun témoin du drame, indique une note publiée dimanche par les Wajãpi. Mais le corps du cacique a été retrouvé avec des marques de violence laissant imaginer un assassinat. La rumeur fait état de coups de couteaux infligés à l’homme de près de 70 ans.

Article réservé à nos abonnés Lire aussi  Au Brésil, le territoire des indiens Yanomami mis en péril par l’explosion de l’orpaillage
Après le crime, qui aurait eu lieu mardi, les garimpeiros — les orpailleurs clandestins suspectés de cette attaque — se seraient installés le vendredi suivant dans une des maisons du village Yvytotõ, chassant ses habitants.

Effrayées, les familles se seraient alors enfuies en masse, réclamant l’aide des autorités. « Les garimpeiros sont armés de mitraillettes et nous sommes en danger. Il faut que l’armée et la police fédérale nous aident, sénateur. S’ils ne viennent pas nous allons agir. Nous avons peur », a notamment imploré Jawaruwa Waiãpi, leader indigène, s’adressant au sénateur Randolfe Rodrigues, membre du parti écologiste, Rede. Samedi, le chanteur de bossa-nova, Caetano Veloso, ainsi que le musicien Lenine et le rappeur Criolo ont relayé ces appels au secours, intimant les forces de l’ordre d’intervenir au plus vite.

Jair Bolsonaro indifférent
A en croire la plupart des défenseurs de la cause des Indiens, cette nouvelle intrusion de garimpeiros au cœur d’une réserve protégée n’est pas étrangère au message envoyé par le président de la République, Jair Bolsonaro.

Contrarié par la démarcation de territoires indigènes qui, selon lui, entravent le développement économique du pays en maintenant les Indiens dans des conditions « préhistoriques », le leader de l’extrême droite brésilienne répète qu’il compte « légaliser » l’orpaillage dans ces réserves. Peu importe que l’activité draine avec elle violence, maladie, prostitution et pollution au mercure. Le président, comme l’ensemble de son gouvernement, entend exploiter les richesses de l’Amazonie. Dénonçant la « psychose environnementale », le chef d’Etat semble ainsi encourager la déforestation stimulée par les orpailleurs, ainsi que les éleveurs et autres forestiers.

Article réservé à nos abonnés Lire aussi  Brésil : la détresse des indigènes face au mépris de Jair Bolsonaro
Samedi, alors que la mort du cacique Wajãpi venait d’être confirmée, le chef d’Etat a insisté, menaçant explicitement l’intégrité de la réserve des Yanomami, à la frontière avec le Venezuela. Une « terre richissime » qu’il conviendrait d’exploiter, a-t-il dit. Et de préciser : « Je suis à la recherche de contacts au sein du premier monde pour explorer ces zones en partenariat ». Son fils, Eduardo Bolsonaro, député, qu’il entend nommer à l’ambassade des Etats-Unis, devrait l’aider dans cette démarche.

Les Wajãpi, peuple pacifique et philosophe
« Il y a maintenant un mouvement global d’invasion de garimpeiros dans tout le Brésil. Mais jamais, jamais, nous n’aurions imaginé que cela pourrait se produire chez les Wajãpi », souffle Dominique Tilkin Gallois, ethnologue et professeure à l’Université de Sao Paulo, voyant le pays replonger trente ans en arrière.

Peuple pacifique et philosophe, les indigènes vivaient en paix depuis la démarcation de leur territoire en 1996 gardant toutefois une peur panique des orpailleurs. Dans les années 1970, 1980 et 1990 les garimpeiros ont multiplié les agressions au sein de leurs « aldeias » (villages) charriant avec eux de tragiques épidémies de rougeole tandis que progressait la construction de la « perimetrale nord », route transamazonnienne bâtie lors de la dictature militaire (1964-1985). Estimés aujourd’hui à 1 350 au Brésil et 1 200 en Guyane française, la population de Wajãpi ne dépassait pas les 150 dans les années 1970.

« Il est assez significatif qu’après plus de vingt ans sans conflit, surgisse une invasion d’une telle violence. Les garimpeiros se sentent soutenus. C’est effrayant », commente Joana Cabral de Oliveira, professeure d’ethnologie à l’université Unicamp à Campinas, spécialiste des Wajãpi depuis 2004.

« Voilà les résultats de la politique de Jair Bolsonaro. Voilà le fruit du démantèlement des organismes de protection de l’environnement et des terres indigènes. Voilà où nous en sommes », conclut aussi Randolfe Rodrigues, sénateur du parti écologiste Rede. « On sait maintenant que Bolsonaro ne fera rien pour protéger ces populations. Il nous faut l’aide de la communauté internationale », insiste-t-il. Contactées les équipes du président n’ont pas donné suite à nos sollicitations.

quinta-feira, 20 de junho de 2019

Venezuelan Deaths Buried by Reuters for Over a Month. JUNE 14, 2019

JOE EMERSBERGER
Reuters depiction of Venezuelan refugees



Reuters (5/22/19) attributes the idea that sanctions are causing a health crisis in Venezuela to Venezuelan Health Minister Carlos Alvarado.

I emailed Stephanie Nebehay of Reuters on May 22 about her article, “Venezuela Turns to Russia, Cuba, China in Health Crisis” (5/22/19). Her article depicted the impact of US sanctions as an allegation that Venezuelan government officials are alone in making. The article stated:

The opposition blames [medical shortages] on economic incompetence and corruption by the leftist movement in power for two decades, but [President Nicolás] Maduro says US economic sanctions are the cause.

I asked why the piece made no mention of a study (CEPR, 4/25/19) released a month earlier by economists Mark Weisbrot and Jeffrey Sachs, which directly linked US sanctions to 40,000 deaths in Venezuela since August of 2017.

Her reply to me on May 23 was quite telling:

I was not aware of that study, but am now and will bear in mind.

It would indeed have been impossible for a Reuters reporter to be aware of the study if they depended only on Reuters articles to keep informed. The news agency hadn’t mentioned the study since it was released, never mind written an article about it.

I asked a contact I have at Reuters about this, and he was also surprised that Reuters hadn’t even mentioned the study. He suggested I query some of Reuters’ Venezuela-based reporters, which I did a few days later.

In my email to them, I passed along a list of news articles since August 2017, when Trump first dramatically intensified economic sanctions, that described worsening economic conditions. I also noted that though the Sachs/Weisbrot study was ignored by Reuters, it had been intensely debated in public by Venezuelan opposition economists (i.e., the kind of people Reuters and other Western media actually pay attention to on Venezuela).

Venezuela and Colombia Oil Production, 2013-2018
CEPR compared oil production in Venezuela and neighboring Colombia to illustrate the impact of US sanctions.

The Brookings Institution published a few rebuttals to the study (here and here), which I also pointed out to Reuters.  The objections Brookings made were essentially already addressed by Weisbrot and Sachs in response to other critics.

On June 9, Reuters finally mentioned the study, at the end of an article by Nebehay, who is based in Geneva:

One study in April, co-authored by US economists Jeffrey Sachs and Mark Weisbrot, blamed sanctions for causing more deaths and disproportionately hitting the most vulnerable.

“We find that the sanctions have inflicted, and increasingly inflict, very serious harm to human life and health, including an estimated more than 40,000 deaths from 2017–2018,” they said, arguing they were illegal under international law.

Nevertheless, since the day Nebehay replied to me, Reuters has continued to portray the severe impact of US sanctions as an allegation that only Maduro and other Venezuelan officials have made. It was even done by Reuters in an article published June 10, the day after the wire service finally mentioned the study:

The government of President Nicolás Maduro says Venezuela’s economic problems are caused by US sanctions that have crippled the OPEC member’s export earnings and blocked it from borrowing from abroad.

Reuters: Venezuela healthcare collapse: Four children die in same hospital this month
Reuters (6/1/19) treats the idea that US sanctions are responsible for deaths in Venezuela as an allegation made by Maduro–placing it after the statement, “The opposition has blamed their deaths on President Nicolás Maduro, whose socialist administration has presided over the collapse of the once-wealthy nation’s economy and severe reductions in healthcare spending.”

Other instances of Reuters representing the idea that US sanctions work as they are intended to do—in other words, that they hurt the Venezuelan economy—as an allegation made by Maduro or his government:

“He [President Maduro] says the country’s economic problems are the result of an ‘economic war’ led by his political adversaries with the help of Washington.” (5/23/19)
“Maduro, who maintains control over state institutions, calls Guaidó a puppet of Washington and blames US sanctions for a hyperinflationary economic meltdown and humanitarian crisis.” (5/26/19; repeated almost verbatim, 5/28/19)
“Maduro’s government, however, says US-imposed sanctions were responsible for the children’s deaths, by freezing funds allocated to buy medicine and send the children to Italy for treatment under the 2010 agreement.” (6/1/19)
“Maduro blames the situation on an ‘economic war’ waged by his political adversaries as well as US sanctions that have hobbled the oil industry and prevented his government from borrowing abroad.” (6/7/19)
“Maduro says Venezuela is victim of an ‘economic war’ led by the opposition with the help of Washington, which has levied several rounds of sanctions against his government.” (6/7/19)
Two recent articles by Reuters, however, stated the obvious about the most recent US sanctions that were implemented in 2019:

“Venezuela is in the midst of a years-long economic and humanitarian crisis that has deepened since the United States imposed sanctions on the country’s oil industry in January as part of an effort to oust Socialist President Nicolás Maduro in favor of opposition leader Juan Guaidó.” (6/7/19)
“Venezuela’s oil exports dropped 17 percent in May because of the sanctions.” (6/6/19)
But the study Reuters belatedly mentioned shows that US sanctions have been devastating to Venezuela’s economy, and seriously aggravating the humanitarian crisis, since August 2017.

Apologists for Trump always rush to say that Venezuela’s depression began years before Trump’s sanctions—as if that made it acceptable to deliberately worsen a humanitarian crisis. To tweak an analogy Caitlin Johnstone used, think of a defense attorney saying, “Your Honor, I will show that the victim was already in intensive care when my client began to assault him.”

Moreover, as Steve Ellner recently discussed, US support for an insurrectionist opposition in Venezuela goes back over a decade before the crisis, and was a factor in causing it. Economic sanctions Obama introduced in 2015 were also harmful—Weisbrot (The Hill, 11/6/16) in 2016 called them “ugly and belligerent enough to keep many investors from investing in Venezuela and to raise the country’s cost of borrowing”—even before Trump’s dramatic escalation of economic warfare that they paved the way for.

Putting aside a study by prominent US economists, the “Maduro says” formulation is also inexcusable because US Sen. Marco Rubio, who has been widely reported as a major influence on Trump’s Venezuela policy, gleefully tweeted on May 16 that Maduro “can’t access funds to rebuild electric grid.”

Rubio didn’t pretend he was referring to an imaginary electric grid used exclusively by Maduro. Reuters (5/30/19) has itself referred to Rubio as the “leading voice in the crafting of President Donald Trump’s Venezuela policy,” in a lengthy piece about US sanctions that said absolutely nothing about their impact on the general population, implying throughout that sanctions only impacted Maduro and other officials. (“Being blacklisted also crimps the lifestyle of Venezuelan officials’ families,” Reuters reported.)

My fellow FAIR contributor, Alan MacLeod, interviewed many Venezuela-based journalists for his book Bad News From Venezuela. He wrote last year (FAIR.org,  5/24/18):

Media copy and paste from news organizations like Reuters and Associated Press, which themselves employ many cheaper local journalists.

In Venezuela, these journalists are not neutral actors, but come from the highly partisan local media, affiliated with the opposition, leading to a situation where Western newsrooms see themselves as an ideological spearhead against Maduro, “the resistance” to the government.

Even worse than being the “resistance” to Maduro is that Reuters has often made itself the “assistance” to politicians like Rubio, who are vicious enough to celebrate the economic strangulation of millions of people.

Reuters may carry on as if it had never reported the study by Weisbrot and Sachs. Western media outlets are perfectly willing to ignore their own reporting when it suits powerful interests (Extra! Update, 10/02). It is therefore up to all of us to not be passive consumers of news, and continually bear in mind that the news we are getting about official enemies may be less than half the story.

You can send a message to Reuters here (or via Twitter: @Reuters). Please remember that respectful communication is the most effective.

Featured image: Reuters depiction (6/7/19) of Venezuelan refugees. (photo: Pilar Olivares/Reuters)

.
Joe Emerberger is a writer based in Canada whose work has appeared in Telesur English, ZNet and Counterpunch.

Still Manufacturing Consent: An Interview With Noam Chomsky. JUNE 19, 2019.



Alan MacLeod
Alan MacLeod @AlanRMacLeod is a member of the Glasgow University Media Group. His latest book, Bad News From Venezuela: 20 Years of Fake News and Misreporting, was published by Routledge in April.








Edward Herman, co-author of Manufacturing Consent


Alan MacLeod: I would first like to ask you about how Manufacturing Consent came about. How did you know Edward Herman? What was the division of labour with the book? What parts did you write and what parts did he write?

Noam Chomsky: Ed wrote the basic framework, the institutional analysis, the corporate structure, the relations to government programs and the fundamental institutional structure of the media—that was basically him. He also did parts on some of the specific studies, like on the coverage comparison of a hundred religious martyrs in Latin America with one Polish priest. He did the comparison of the elections, which was partly drawn from a book that he had already done on demonstration elections. I did all the parts on Vietnam and on the Freedom House attack on the media. Of course, we interacted on all the chapters, but the main division of labor was that.

AM: And what was the reaction to it when it came out? Was it celebrated? Ignored? Attacked?

NC: The reaction was quite interesting. Mostly the journalists and the media did not like it at all, of course. And, interestingly, they did not like the defense of the integrity of journalism: the last part, which investigated Peter Braestrup’s major, two-volume Freedom House attack on the media for having been treacherous, for having lost the Vietnam war, and so on (which turned out to be a total fraud).

I was probably the only person who read the actual document, both of the two volumes. One, the attack on the media, [the other] the documentary basis. Hardly any correlation between them! It was just literally total fraud!

And what the results showed was that the journalists were courageous, honorable; they had integrity, they did their work seriously—but, of course, all within the framework of US government ideology. Like all the coverage of the war, like, say, David Halberstam. It was honest, serious, but, almost without exception, within the framework of the assumption that the United States is making a mistake by trying to save democracy in South Vietnam from Communist aggression. That is the picture. The idea that the United States was carrying out a major war crime by invading another country and destroying the indigenous resistance…. the facts were there, but not the framework of discussion.

And they did not like that. Journalists would much prefer to be regarded as aggressive, independent, thinking for themselves, and if they were treacherous, well, OK, maybe they went overboard attacking the US government—that they much preferred. So as far as the journalists themselves were concerned, aside from a few exceptions, they did not like that picture of journalism as being honest, courageous and with integrity.

There were very few reviews of the book, but there was one critical discussion that I wrote about later, by Nicholas Lehmann [New Republic,  1/9/89], a well-known scholar of journalism, who wrote a review in which he disparaged it, saying, “This doesn’t mean anything.”

For example, he discussed the chapter comparing the assassinations of a hundred religious martyrs in Central America, including an archbishop, American nuns and leading Latin American intellectuals—where there was virtually no coverage—with the coverage of the assassination of one Polish priest, where the assassins were immediately apprehended, tried, sentenced to jail—where there was vast reportage. This was one of our many examples of the way in which “worthy victims” are treated, as compared with “unworthy victims.”

He said, “Well, this doesn’t mean anything, it is just because the media focused on one thing at a time, and they happened to be focusing on Poland, not El Salvador.” So, out of curiosity, I went to the New York Times index, and it turned out there was more coverage of El Salvador than of Poland during that period. But it does not matter, because this is a world of alternative facts. The media commentary is mostly propaganda and ideology. There were a few other critiques rather like that…but in the mainstream, it was basically ignored.

The first book that Ed and I wrote together, Counterrevolutionary Violence, was published by a small publisher that was doing quite well. They published 20,000 copies of it, and were ready to distribute it. The publisher was owned by a big conglomerate, Warner Brothers, now part of Time Warner. One of the Warner executives saw the advertising for the book, and did not like it. He asked to see the book, and when he saw it, he went berserk and ordered them to stop distributing it immediately.

The publisher at first did not agree. They said they would publish a critical volume with contrary views, but that was not enough. To prevent it from being published, in the course of the discussion, he just put the whole publisher out of business, destroying all their stock—not only our book, but all their books.

We brought this to the attention to some civil libertarians at the American Civil Liberties Union. They did not see any problem. It is not government censorship; it is just a corporation deciding to destroy a publisher to prevent them distributing a book.

We immediately started working on an expansion of the book: The Political Economy of Human Rights. The reaction to that was quite interesting. Many things were discussed, but there were two major chapters where we compared two huge atrocities going on at the same time in the same place, in South East Asia: one in Cambodia under Pol Pot; the other in East Timor, after the Indonesian invasion.

They were very similar. Per capita, the East Timor atrocities were worse, as they killed a larger portion of the population; but they were comparable. The fundamental difference between them was that in one case, you could blame it on an official enemy and there was absolutely nothing to do about it—nobody had a proposal as to how to stop it.

In the other case, we were responsible. The United States and its allies were crucially responsible. The US blocked action at the United Nations, provided the arms for Indonesia. The more the atrocities increased, the more the arms flowed. And there was everything you could do about it: You could just call it off.

The reaction was, not a word on our chapter about East Timor; that disappeared. But there was a huge attack on our discussion of Cambodia. There was a huge literature on this, trying to show that we were apologists for Pol Pot. The reason for this was that we went through the media and said, “We don’t know what the facts are, we can’t know, but we will compare the facts available with what came out of the media filter,” and it was grotesque: There was lying at a level that would have astonished Stalin. So we went through that record. That led to total hysteria. Look it up, you will find a ton of literature about it. We recently published a new edition of the book, and we didn’t change a comma, because there was nothing wrong with it. But that is the kind of reaction you get with Manufacturing Consent.

AM: It’s now been almost 30 years since its publication, and the media landscape has, in many ways, changed greatly since 1988. I think perhaps the largest difference is the arrival of the internet and social media. One 2016 study showed that half of all British people get their news online now, with online news having overtaken television in its reach, and having far superseded it among those under 45 years old. Twenty-five percent of the UK receives its news primarily through social media like Facebook or Twitter. In the United States, two-thirds of the adult population get news through social media, and that figure is growing at nearly 10 percent a year. Even the majority of over-50s use social media for news. Could you speak about the internet and social media, its usage and the evolving media landscape with regard to the propaganda model?

NC: I don’t think the internet and social media changes the propaganda model at all. The propaganda model was about the major media institutions and they remain, with all the social media and everything else, the primary source of news, information and commentary. The news that appears in social media is drawn from them. So, if you look at the news on Facebook, it comes straight from the major media. They don’t do their own investigations.

As far as the major media are concerned, there is no fundamental difference. In fact, in some ways, they are a little more independent than they were back in the 1980s, partly because of changes in the society, which have opened things up to an extent. But fundamentally, they are the same. In fact, Ed and I did a second edition of Manufacturing Consent about 16 years ago, and we talked about the internet and whether to write anything about it, and we decided just to leave it alone.

As far as social media are concerned, they are interesting in themselves. There has been a certain amount of study of them. What they have done is create bubbles. If you read the New York Times—which, incidentally, young people did not read much in the 1980s, either—but if you read the New York Times or the Washington Post, or even if you watch television news, you get a certain range of opinion, not very broad—it goes from center to far-right, but at least there is some discussion, and occasionally you get a critical voice here and there.

On social media, that has declined. People tend to go to things that just reinforce their own opinions, so you end up with bubbles. And it is all across the spectrum. The people on what is called the left see the left media, the people on the right see the right media. And the level of material is, of course, much more shallow.

The mainstream media, as we wrote in Manufacturing Consent, are a very significant source of news and information, and provide very valuable material. The first thing I do every day is read the New York Times, as it is the most comprehensive journal. You have to critically analyze what you read and understand the framework, what is left out and so forth, but that is not quantum physics; it is not hard to do. But it is a source of news.

On social media, you do not find that. There are exceptions; there are internet journals that are very good—for example, The Intercept—but most of it [internet and social media] is pretty shallow, and has led to a decline in understanding of the world in many ways.

AM: And, of course, there is the increasingly close relationship between these massive online monopolies and the US state. For instance, Jeff Bezos, the owner of the Washington Post and Amazon, received a $600 million contract with the CIA. Meanwhile, Google has something of a revolving door with the State Department, and shares enormous amounts of data about us with it, and are constantly listening to us through products like Siri and Alexa. Its former CEO, Eric Schmidt’s book about technological imperialism came heartily endorsed by Bill Clinton, Henry Kissinger, Madeleine Albright, Tony Blair—and the former head of the NSA, who called Google part of the “defense industrial base.” Julian Assange has called some of Google’s projects “Orwellian horrors.”

NC: To a certain extent, that is true. They do things that are connected with state power, but I think Google and Facebook and the other few conglomerates that monopolize the system are basically connected with advertisers. They are part of the business world.

So they are essentially selling you to advertisers, just as the major old media do; they are also selling audiences to advertisers, but in a different way. Google and Facebook are doing it by monitoring everything about you, so that somehow advertisers will be able to make more money approaching you. And that is very dangerous. And some of the things that are done and are not reported are quite interesting.

So take the last German elections, for example. There was a lot of talk about potential Russian interference, that the Russians would undermine the election and so on. It turns out there was interference in the election. It was not Russian. It was from the United States. A media company that works for nice guys like Trump, Le Pen and Netanyahu got together with Facebook, and the Facebook office of Berlin provided them with extensive details of the kind they have on German voters, so then the media company could microtarget ads to specific voters to try to influence them to vote in a certain way. For whom? For Alternative für Deutschland, the neo-fascist party! Which probably is a factor in their surprisingly high vote.

This was reported in the business press, so you can read about it in Bloomberg Businessweek. But try to find a report in the mainstream press. It is not the kind of electoral manipulation we like to talk about. That is typical of the kind of things we discussed in Manufacturing Consent. So, yes, there is interference in elections, this is a good example. But the main thing is the way in which people are individually tracked to monitor the environment in which they live, so as to control them for the benefit of advertisers and business.

You may have read that there are recent studies showing that automobile manufacturers are now so flooded with data from drivers of cars, that they have not yet worked out a way on how to get a business model, to allow advertisers to follow you every moment of your life.  There are already apps that you can get where they give you some free device, and in return you agree to have advertisements posted on the car dashboard the whole time you are driving. So if you are approaching an area where there is a certain restaurant, there will be an ad for that restaurant, things like that. This is really insidious, and it can be used in very dangerous ways, and sooner or later will be, I am sure.

AM: Are companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon too big to exist privately and in their current form?

NC: Any kind of near-monopoly as these companies are is extremely dangerous. They have enormous power and outreach. I do not think that any organization at all should have that kind of power. Their ability to collect information and to devise means of controlling what you see and do is very dangerous. Even at the level of you looking up on a search engine, Google deciding what you are going to see first, second and so on is quite dangerous. And they can be quite insidious, like what happened in the German election.

AM: In chapter four, I suggest that the anti-Communist filter that you wrote about in the 1980s, as one of the five crucial filters that affect news, is being drawn upon to create a new “anti-Russian” filter, where journalists and political figures who do not toe the establishment line on war and foreign policy will be chided as “Russian agents” or “Putin’s puppets.” You mentioned The Intercept; its co-founder Glenn Greenwald is an archetypal example of this. Another would be Jeremy Corbyn. [Note: The day after this interview took place, the Sun, Britain’s largest newspaper by circulation, ran with the front-page headline, “Putin’s Puppet: Corbyn Refuses to Blast Russia on Spy Attack,” as the leader of the Labour Party did not unreservedly endorse sanctions on Russia.] What is your opinion about the #Russiagate allegations, and the general political climate with regards to Russia?

NC: As you probably know, in the United Kingdom right now, there are moves to remove people’s access to RT, which is another television outlet. When I am overseas, I look at that and BBC, and they give a lot of information and news from different perspectives. But you have to protect people in the UK from an alternative point of view. In the United States, it is not a problem, because practically nobody has heard of RT. And Al-Jazeera, for example, had to cancel its efforts to reach an American audience, because practically no station would allow them to appear. So there is no state censorship, it is just Counterrevolutionary Violence business censorship again.

Let’s take the Russia business. Let’s say all the claims are true. Suppose Russia tried to interfere in the American elections. That ought to make people laugh hysterically. There is huge interference in American elections. It comes from the corporate sector. They practically buy the elections. In fact, there is extensive work in mainstream academic political science that demonstrates very convincingly that you can predict the electability, hence largely the votes, of people in Congress on major issues just by looking at their campaign funding. That is one factor, let alone lobbying and everything else. That is massive interference in elections.

About 70 per cent of the population of the US is not even represented, meaning that their own representatives pay no attention to their views, and follow the views of the major funders. This is manipulation on an enormous level! Whatever the Russians might have done is not even a toothpick on a mountain compared to that, quite apart from the fact that the US not only intervenes in elections (including in Russia), but overthrows governments. The whole thing is a bad joke, and a sign of the collapse of the Democratic Party as a serious institution. They are focusing on this marginal phenomenon as a way to discredit Trump, and almost totally ignoring the really devastating things carried out by the Trump administration.

Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting did a study a little while ago of interviews with Trump by the major media since his election. It turns out that climate change was not mentioned. That is the most serious thing that he is doing!

It should be a major headline every day that, alone in the world, the most powerful country in human history is not only refusing to participate in the efforts to deal with an existential crisis, but, in fact, is acting to exacerbate the crisis, pouring funds and money into more use of fossil fuels. Try and find an example in history of any political organization that was dedicated with passion to trying to destroy the prospect for organized human life. Even the Nazis were not doing that!

And that is the Republican Party under Trump. It is the most dangerous organization in human history, for this reason alone. It is not asked about, not discussed. It is hard to find words to describe it. Instead of that, and plenty of other things that they are doing, what the media is trying to do is find some Russian interference in the election. It is hard to know what to say about it!

AM: Of course, these actions are not happening in a vacuum. There is a huge geopolitical backdrop, where Western and Russian forces are conducting a silent war in places like Ukraine and Syria. Could I get you to comment on the coverage of the Syria situation, and ask how we critique our own media without undermining genuine aspirations of Syrians struggling for a better society?

NC: I think the media should cover Syria accurately and seriously, as a number of journalists—Patrick Cockburn, Robert Fisk, Charles Glass, Jonathan Randall—do. Those journalists cover it very accurately, that’s what they should be doing. Incidentally, you will notice that I mentioned journalists who write in England, not the United States. Serious coverage is much harder to find here. There is some, but not much. So the media should cover what is happening.

As far as critical discussion is concerned, what Assad has been doing with Russian support is vicious and criminal. Right now, what is happening in Eastern Ghouta is a major atrocity. But as Patrick Cockburn pointed out in the Independent, what is happening in Afrin is about the same.

AM: Happening where, sorry?

NC: Afrin. Turkish forces and their allies are carrying out the attack in a mostly Kurdish area. Patrick Cockburn has covered it, but almost nobody else. The fact that you ask is itself revealing. The Turkish invasion of Syria is quite serious, and it is threatening to destroy the Kurdish independent areas. It is not a joke. But it is barely covered, apart from people like Patrick Cockburn and Charlie Glass that cover it, but not many.

AM: I wanted to ask about clickbait and fake news as well. In the context of decreased revenues, we have seen an increase in inflammatory and often simply false reporting. Even organizations that do not rely on the traditional financing structure, like the BBC, have told their staff to “emulate Buzzfeed.” What is your opinion on fake news today, its uses and abuses?

Les Moonves (cc photo: David Shankbone)
CBS CEO Les Moonves (cc photo: David Shankbone)

NC: The use of just invented news—Breitbart, for example—is not new, but it used to be on supermarket shelves. You would see the National Enquirer, that would tell you Obama had an affair with whomever. That is fake news. But now it has spread quite widely, but not really in the major media. I think they do pretty much what they did before. It is true that advertising revenues had declined for a time, but they increased with Trump. The television media in particular are delighted with the Trump phenomenon—you cannot turn on the television set without seeing something about Trump. And it is bringing in many more viewers. One of the CEOs of CBS said during the presidential campaign that “for us, economically, Trump’s place in this election is a good thing,” that he has “never seen anything like it” and it is “going to be a very good year for us.”

I happened to be overseas when the election took place, and I watched BBC for several days. It was 100 percent Trump! Nothing else in the world! Actually, the election was important, but it was important for quite different reasons that were not reported. For example, November 8, the day of the election, was an extremely important day in history. The World Meteorological Organization was meeting in Morocco and trying to put some teeth in the Paris negotiations. It had presented a dire picture of the impact of climate change on the world. As soon as the election results came in, the meeting basically stopped, and the question was, “Can we even continue when the most powerful country in human history is deciding to destroy our efforts?” That was the major news of the day, not the fact that some half-mad billionaire with huge media support managed to win an election. But it was not even mentioned. A couple of weeks later, I found some mentions in the back pages.

As far as the election itself was concerned, the most striking feature was the Sanders campaign. The Sanders campaign was the first time in over a century of American political history that a candidate was able to get to where he did. Sanders probably would have been nominated if it had not been for the machinations of the Obama/Clinton party managers. But he did this with no name recognition, no funding from wealth or corporate power, and no media support or recognition—that is astonishing! That has never happened in American political history. In the United States, elections are basically bought, as I mentioned previously. This was a really striking phenomenon, but was barely mentioned in the media.

By now, he is by far the most popular political figure in the country, but you hardly see a mention of him anywhere. He and his movement are doing lots of things, but they cannot get any reporting on it. Those are the really important things. And the BBC is the same; it is “Trump did this,” “Trump did that.”

What Trump actually is doing is pretty clever. It is a dual program underway; Trump carries out one ridiculous antic after another. The media focus on it, the factcheckers start, and a couple of days later they say, “Well, this and that fact were wrong,” but by then, everyone has forgotten about it, and he is on to some new antics.

Meanwhile, while media attention is focused on the megalomaniac conman who is working to attract their attention, the really savage wing of the Republican Party, the Paul Ryan wing, is busy dismantling every element of government that might help the general population, and dedicating themselves to their real constituency: the super wealthy and corporate power. That is happening in the background, while everyone is focusing on Trump’s latest antics. It is a good system and is working very well.

Meanwhile, he is maintaining his base, who are under the illusion that somehow he is going to bring back jobs or that he is standing up for America. It is working quite well, and the media and the Democrats are in particular responsible for allowing it to continue.

AM: As many old media companies struggle to maintain advertising incomes due to increased competition from online marketing companies, like Google AdSense, does this make the second filter of the propaganda model weaker, or, perversely, stronger, as media are more desperate than ever to appease their remaining sponsors? Furthermore, journalism appears to be becoming a less professionalized field, with fewer and fewer full-time staff journalists employed by newspapers and TV, and more freelancers and citizen journalists. In this context, what is journalism’s future?

NC: Media coverage is shrinking, but the part that is there is still professionalized. There are very good, professional correspondents in the field, analysts and so on, but there are much fewer of them. Take Boston, where I have lived for many years. The Boston Globe was a major, leading newspaper. It had international bureaus; it did the best coverage of Central America during Reagan’s wars. Now there are a few things apart from local news in it, and the rest is what they pick up from wire services. It is essentially hardly a newspaper anymore.

That kind of thing is happening around the country, but it is not deprofessionalization, it is just a decline in the model of the media that had functioned. In part, it is being undermined by social media. If people can turn on the computer and get a couple of headlines, then go on with their lives, it is a lot easier than reading a newspaper and trying to figure out what is happening. So there is a general cheapening of the culture that is affecting the media. But I see no evidence that the media are more influenced in their news coverage and analysis by advertisers than was the case before. It may be so, but I do not have any evidence for it.

AM: Are the five explanatory filters more than an arbitrary list of possible causes for the declawing of media? Are they all even “filters,” given that at least one of them, flak, requires conscious activity (more like an injection of poison than a filter), and the fifth is more a very broad idea about ideology?

NC: The fifth one, the anti-Communist filter, was too narrow. In our [2002] edition of Manufacturing Consent, we expanded it to invented threats to try to control opinion and discussion. Iran is a good example; the war on terror is another. It is not just anti-Communism.

Aside from that, I do not understand what is arbitrary. We looked at the institutional structures of the [mainstream] media. What are they? They are major corporations, that are often parts of bigger, mega-corporations. They have a product that they sell to a market. The product is readers of newspapers, or viewers on television, and the market is advertisers.

So they are corporate institutions that sell readers to advertisers. They are all closely linked to government. There is a lot of flow, in and out, of personnel, with a lot of influence.

And we asked a simple question, that anyone who believes in free markets would ask at once: Do the structure of the producer, of the market, and the links to other power structures, does that affect the media content? That is the propaganda model. There is nothing arbitrary about it. That is just elementary. And if you believe in free markets, that is exactly what you would look at.

AM: It is 30 years since Manufacturing Consent was published. Today, what would you have added or subtracted to the book if you were writing it today? Or do you think the propaganda model still holds very strongly?

NC: The model is about the same today as it was in the 1980s. I would just use new examples. Take, say, Iran. There is a lot to say about that. There is a lot of concern about the potential threat of Iranian nuclear weapons. A couple of questions arise: Suppose Iran was developing nuclear weapons. Who would be threatened?

Actually, we have an analysis of this, by a US intelligence report to Congress on the nature of the strategic issues of the world. This is before the P5+1 agreement. What they point out is that if Iran is developing nuclear weapons, which we do not know, the reason would be as part of their deterrent strategy. As they point out, Iran has very low military expenditure, even by the standards of the region, and, of course, by the standards of the West. Their strategic doctrine is defensive; they want to defend themselves from any attack. And if they are developing nuclear weapons, it would be part of their deterrent strategy.

Who is that a threat to? It is very simple: It is a threat to the rogue states that want to rampage in the region without any deterrent. There are two of them. They are called the United States and Israel. It is a threat to them if anyone has a deterrent. That is the potential “threat” of Iran.

Is there a way of dealing with that potential threat? There is one very simple way: move to establish a nuclear weapons–free zone in the area. Is there a barrier to that? Not from Iran. Iran has been calling for that for years. Not the Arab states, they have been pressing for it almost forever. In fact, they initiated the effort. Not the rest of the world, which is strongly in favor of it.

There is one barrier. It is called the United States. The US, over a long period of time, has refused to allow this to proceed, most recently Obama in 2015. The US and Britain have a special commitment to this. Here is what ought to be the headlines on Iran: The United States and Britain have a particular commitment to a nuclear weapons–free zone in the region. When the US and Britain invaded Iraq, they had to concoct some sort of pretext. What they did was refer to a 1991 Security Council resolution that called on Saddam Hussein to stop his production of weapons of mass destruction. That very same Security Council resolution calls on “all parties,” meaning the US and Britain, to move towards establishing a nuclear weapons–free zone in the region.

So the US and Britain have a special commitment to move towards the one measure that could end any possible threat that anyone believes Iran poses. Why aren’t they doing it? There is a simple reason. They have to prevent any inspection or control of Israel’s nuclear facilities. That is the story. Do you see it discussed? No. And I would give many other examples in a new edition.

AM: And in terms of the future of journalism, what do you think? Is it bleak?

NC: Well, there is an audience that is interesting. Let’s go back to the Sanders campaign that I mentioned earlier. The fact is that Sanders is by far the most popular political figure in the country. Journalism could try to respond to that. It could try to reach the people who are really interested in doing something about the hard problems of the world, and engage with them. There are plenty of such people. But the media are not reaching them. They can and they should. That would be the future of really independent media.

Take something like I.F. Stone’s Weekly. One person working on his own was able to reach a large number of people. Furthermore, it was magnified by the fact that the professional, mainstream media pretended he did not exist, but the journalists were reading his stuff all the time and cannibalizing it. That could be done by the media themselves.







quinta-feira, 6 de junho de 2019

POR QUÉ HAY GENTE QUE VOTA A UN GOBIERNO QUE LA PERJUDICA? “CUANDO HAY UN VOTO POR ODIO, ESO SE VUELVE CONTRA LA PROPIA PERSONA”



PSICOLOGÍA - 06 de junio de 2019. PÁGINA 12. ARGENTINA.


El psicoanalista Sebastián Plut analiza 
Por qué hay gente que vota a un gobierno que la perjudica.
“Cuando hay un voto por odio, eso se vuelve contra la propia persona”

En su último libro, indaga en la psicología de los votantes de la derecha, analiza la ideología del odio, expresa la ambigüedad del término “cultura” en un gobierno como el actual y conjetura acerca del “vecino” como destinatario de las políticas neoliberales.

Por Oscar Ranzani


Es un misterio, pero por estos días muchos se preguntan por qué algunas personas votan a un gobierno que las desfavorece. El doctor en Psicología y psicoanalista Sebastián Plut lo toma como punto de partida en el libro El malestar en la cultura neoliberal (Editorial Letra Viva), aunque, como es de suponer, no hay una única respuesta. El mismo Plut detalla que el libro está estructurado en tres secciones. La primera aborda el neoliberalismo como “cultura” y cómo opera la antinomia “civilización o barbarie” en sus votantes. La segunda sección, a partir del análisis del discurso del presidente Mauricio Macri, intenta comprender la eficacia de su subjetividad en la configuración de sus estrategias como conductor político. La tercera parte tiene ocho ensayos sobre los medios de comunicación, la opinión pública y cómo en ese contexto instalan determinadas ideas y formas de pensar vinculadas con el individualismo. 

¿Existe una cultura neoliberal o es una ironía? El problema de la pregunta, según Plut, es la “o” porque “puede existir y ser una ironía al mismo tiempo”. Este psicoanalista hace una disquisición sobre el término “cultura” y cierta ambigüedad que puede tener, “ambigüedad básicamente derivada de los múltiples usos que tiene el término y que forma parte de nuestro repertorio social y general”. Posteriormente, pasa a formular una conceptualización desde la perspectiva de Freud de lo que es la cultura. “En ese sentido, entiendo que efectivamente existe una cultura neoliberal en tanto modelo de práctica social, modelo de ciertos valores, metas, acciones, producción de servicios y de regulación de los vínculos pero que, al mismo tiempo, contiene su propia tendencia a la aniquilación de la cultura. Tiene esa paradoja”, explica Plut. 

–No hay una única respuesta al por qué la gente vota a un gobierno neoliberal. Desde su perspectiva psicoanalítica, ¿cuál le convence más, al margen de que el psicoanálisis trabaja caso por caso?

–Yo preferiría no tener que quedarme con alguna respuesta que me convenza más, no porque todas las hipótesis valgan lo mismo o sean igual de consistentes sino porque la heterogeneidad está en la masa de votantes de un gobierno neoliberal. Si uno lo dice de manera simple, hay quien vota a un gobierno neoliberal claramente porque se beneficia económicamente. Puede haber otros que lo votan porque el incentivo es moral, más allá de cuál es la moral que se sostiene en cada caso; quiero decir, que prefieren esos valores o modelos sociales, más allá de que se les deteriore la vida en otros terrenos, como el económico. Eso dicho en un plano descriptivo. Yo creo que la gente vota a un modelo neoliberal también para satisfacer cierta cuota de sadismo. Y lo que es más enigmático aún (y digo enigmático porque es la palabra que Freud usa para el concepto que voy a utilizar ahora) es que también creo que es por una cuota de masoquismo. 

–Parte de la gente que votó a Macri y que no le había ido mal en el gobierno anterior, ¿decide racionalmente o por odio a una figura política?

–También hay odio, por eso yo decía una cuota de sadismo. Puede haber una cuota de ingenuidad, pero yo creo que en muchas personas ha prevalecido el odio. Vuelvo al punto anterior: cuando hay un voto por odio finalmente eso termina volviéndose contra la propia persona. Y ahí es donde yo incluyo la categoría masoquismo. 

–¿Por qué alguien que está mal por este gobierno no es capaz de reconocerlo ni de evaluar la decisión que tomó en su momento?

–Es buena la pregunta porque usted recién preguntaba por la decisión de quienes votaron a Macri en 2015 y uno se pregunta si hoy es lo mismo; quiero decir, si las razones que determinaron el voto en 2015 pueden estudiarse del mismo modo que las razones que determinarían el volver a votarlo hoy. Por supuesto, siempre estamos hablando de los conjuntos amplios de la sociedad, no de los pequeños grupos que se van a beneficiar o que se han beneficiado económicamente o que están detrás de todo esto. Yo creo que hay varias razones para volver a votarlo. Incluso, me he preguntado si votan a Macri por odio a lo anterior, por odio al populismo o en qué medida este gobierno les permite justificar el vehículo de un odio. Si uno quisiera atribuir cierta ingenuidad al voto inicial o el hecho de que le hubieran creído a las propuestas o promesas de la “Revolución de la Alegría”, es más difícil de pensar al día de hoy que eso pueda ser un factor tan eficaz porque la realidad es contundente. Por eso, introducía el concepto de masoquismo, que aclaro que no quiere decir “Pegame que me gusta” ni nada eso sino que masoquismo son las conductas o los pensamientos que desarrollamos que no impiden que aumente el displacer. Más bien incrementan el propio displacer. 

–¿Por qué está instalada la idea en muchos votantes de Macri de que “los millonarios no necesitan robar”?

–No sé por qué está instalada. Creo que la han instalado y que ha sido una campaña instalar este tipo de pensamientos que da para hablar muy extenso y sobre sus implicancias. Por supuesto, en primer lugar yo considero que esa frase es falsa. Pero más allá de que sea falsa, lo más interesante de esa frase es que rompe con toda lógica porque no hay ningún nexo lógico entre el patrimonio de un sujeto y su honestidad. En todo caso, uno es honesto y, eventualmente, logra hacer dinero, o es deshonesto y por serlo logra hacer dinero. La honestidad y la deshonestidad pueden ser los factores que a alguien lo lleven a hacer dinero o no. Pero tener dinero no es un factor causal de la honestidad. La frase se propone como un nexo causal: “Como es millonario, no necesita robar”. De ese modo, lo que se logra es establecer un nexo entre dos premisas que no tienen nexo alguno. La frase, además de ser falsa, implica distorsionar la capacidad de pensar de los ciudadanos cuando la sostienen porque se sostiene algo que no tiene ningún fundamento y que rompe con la lógica, con lo cual se empieza a pensar de un modo carente de fundamento y de lógica. Por supuesto que esa frase tiene otras derivaciones como, por ejemplo, que si Macri es millonario y no necesita robar, los que necesitan robar son los pobres o aquellos que llegaron a la política para hacer dinero; es decir, los que no tenían dinero. Es una frase que también está al servicio de la estigmatización y que está al servicio de la ruptura de la lógica; o sea, de la perturbación de la capacidad de pensar. 

–Usted señala que en la antinomia “Civilización o Barbarie” intervienen los mecanismos de expulsión y de exclusión. ¿Se puede asociar con que en las ideas de los votantes de Macri la civilización es la adherencia a sus políticas y la barbarie sería el retorno al kirchnerismo?

–Claro, el problema de la antinomia “Civilización o Barbarie” es suponer que los grupos sociales están claramente divididos en sus rasgos psicológicos. O sea, que los civilizados están de un lado, los bárbaros están del otro; los buenos de un lado; los malos, del otro. La categoría a la que yo recurro, que es la de antagonismo, implica pensar los conflictos no en una división radical entre grupos o sectores sino los conflictos que se dan en todos nosotros. ¿Por qué se sostiene la antinomia? Yo creo que cuando se realiza esa operación de “Civilización o Barbarie” (o los nombres que pueda tener más en la actualidad del tipo “No hay izquierdas ni derechas, somos el centro y el equilibrio” o “Somos la normalidad”) se sostiene tan radicalmente porque aquello que se deposita en ese otro denigrado no sólo son un conjunto de rasgos que ese otro puede tener o no sino que también se proyecta en ese otro el propio desvalimiento. 

–En estos momentos se cambió la idea de “adversario” por la de “enemigo” en la vida política argentina, pero también a nivel de la sociedad. ¿Esto se puede relacionar con el concepto psicoanalítico del yo placer purificado?

–Claro, el yo placer purificado, dice Freud, expulsa de sí todo lo que es displacentero y se arroga para sí todo lo que es placentero. Freud utiliza una frase que es algo así como “Yo, lo bueno; lo malo lo escupo”. Eso tiene que ver con lo que hablábamos recién: no sólo yo creo que es malo lo que el otro tiene como atributos o rasgos sino que, además, parte de eso que le coloco al otro es propio. Y ahí es donde está la necesidad tan intensa de mantener la escisión radical en tanto me permite a mí considerarme normal, bueno, intachable, impecable, limpio de toda corrupción. Y creo que ahí es donde está la fuerza de la antinomia. Caetano Veloso tiene una canción que dice “De cerca nadie es normal”. Y eso es lo que pasa: nadie es normal, pero en la antinomia se pretende que sí. 

–Hay una idea de que el rico es por el esfuerzo que hizo y que el pobre es un subsidiado que no se merece ascender económicamente. ¿La denominada “meritocracia” anula cualquier posibilidad de lazos sociales y solidarios?

–La meritocracia anula y abomina de todo lazo solidario porque la meritocracia es el “sálvese quien pueda”. Esa frase aparece bajo la forma del pánico cuando entra una crisis, pero si yo lo que tengo es porque sólo me lo merezco yo y, entonces, tengo derecho a ciertos privilegios, cualquier acción colectiva aparece como amenazante de mi carrera personal. La meritocracia desestima por completo toda idea de lo colectivo, lo solidario; en términos freudianos, “todo aquello que sea la denegación del propio poder”. Por ejemplo, la justicia desde la meritocracia se entiende como la atribución de ciertos privilegios, el que tiene más versus el que tiene menos; mientras que la justicia según lo entiendo –y en esto también sigo a Freud– es entendida como una renuncia pulsional; o sea, como una denegación del propio privilegio: renunciar uno para que el otro también deba renunciar. 

–Muchos votantes del neoliberalismo que discutían de política en el gobierno anterior ya no lo hacen en estos momentos. ¿Esto tiene que ver con un sentimiento de vergüenza?

–Es llamativo que no lo hagan cuando antes lo hacían intensamente. Y si lo hacen, es sólo para hablar del gobierno anterior. Ese es un dato que me asombra enormemente. Y lo digo independientemente de las posiciones que cada quien tenga: a lo votantes del macrismo (hablo de los ciudadanos, no hablo de los funcionarios, dirigentes ni militantes) no los suelo escuchar hablar del gobierno al que votan. Entonces, ¿qué es lo que ocurre que no pueden decir una palabra? Creo que hay una cuestión de silencio ligada a la vergüenza, quizás con alguna especie de expectativa inconsciente de que el día de mañana podrán decir “Yo nunca defendí el gobierno de Macri”.

–¿Por qué Macri le habla al “vecino”?

–En principio, el vecino es aquel con el que uno tiene una cercanía espacial en términos de definición conceptual. Tengo un consultorio en Palermo y el que lo tiene en Flores no es mi vecino. Es más: el que tiene un consultorio a diez cuadras del mío no es mi vecino. Más allá de que cuando él empleaba la palabra “vecino” para hablar de toda la ciudad de Buenos Aires, en realidad la idea de “vecino” implica, por un lado, aludir al que está cerca, “está en mi mismo sector, o es como yo, o piensa como yo”. La idea de vecino alude al que supuestamente es un idéntico, con lo cual, en el fondo, cuando Macri le habla al “vecino”, en realidad no le habla al otro (otro entendido como diferente). Y éste es uno de los problemas del llamado “consenso”, sobre el cual este gobierno habla tanto, como el “trabajo en equipo”, “estar juntos”. El consenso es el nombre que el neoliberalismo le da a la democracia. Pero lo que no está explicitado en esa idea de consenso es cuál es el destino que se le reserva al que piensa diferente. En realidad, yo sé cual es el destino que se le reserva al que piensa diferente: la exclusión, la criminalización, la persecución, etcétera. Pero en el discurso no hay un lugar para aquel que piensa diferente, en tanto “todos debemos tirar para el mismo lado, estar juntos, trabajar en equipo”. En el neoliberalismo se pretende suponer que del otro lado nunca hay un adversario, un rival, un enemigo, se llame de cualquiera de estas tres maneras. Creo que lo que se intenta pensar es que el otro es idéntico porque sólo así se puede suponer que “todos vamos juntos para el mismo lado”, lo cual no tiene ningún correlato con lo que ocurre en los hechos. En los hechos, no todos tiramos para el mismo lado. Eso no ocurre. 

–¿Es cierto que en épocas de crisis la población refuerza posiciones de derecha?

–Algunos han dicho que en épocas de crisis se refuerzan posiciones de derecha, pero también se ha visto que en épocas de bonanza también se refuerzan posiciones de derecha. Podría haber mil problemas para la época del 2015, pero no es lo mismo que una situación de crisis social, política y económica si se reforzaron posiciones de derecha. Quizás habría una diferencia. Uno podría decir: “Si las cosas están muy mal, si hay una crisis y yo quiero votar algo diferente y me voy para la derecha” puede decir “a lo sumo me equivoqué, pero busqué una solución a un problema que existía”. Más curioso es cuando las cosas andan más o menos bien y uno dice: “Voy a cambiar”. ¿Las dos situaciones distintas dan el mismo desenlace? ¿lo económico no es el factor?, porque ya sea por crisis o por bonanza en una sociedad puede haber un incremento del voto hacia la derecha. Creo que no hay una respuesta clara o por lo menos yo no la tengo, pero sí diría que para ciertos sectores hay un conflicto cuando la clase media se acerca con la clase baja. Entonces, eso puede ocurrir por bonanza (porque la clase baja empieza a subir) o por crisis (que la clase media empiece a bajar). Y esto es lo que explota cierto sector dirigencial: los conflictos entre clase media y clase baja, entre los que se sacrifican y los subsidiados.

Quando será o próximo ataque contra a América Latina?

À CUT Brasil: https://www.cut.org.br/ À Marcha Mundial das Mulheres: https://www.marchamundialdasmulheres.org.br/ À Fundação Perseu Abra...