Our Readers' Opinions
June 22, 2007
An affront to national intelligence

22.JUN.07

EDITOR: The authors of two articles which appeared in the News Newspaper of the 15th June sought to insult the national intelligence, titled: “All Dictators Oppose Freedom”. The writer seem to equate Adolph Hitler, Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez as leaders who oppose freedom and suggested that the closure of an opposition television station in Venezuela is an indicator that President Chavez did not want his people to achieve a high standard of living, rather he wanted them to remain poor and this would cause them to remain quiet. These three conclusions can only be viewed as an affront to the intelligence of the citizens of SVG.{{more}}

Likewise in the article “No Pee No Pay” Ms. Mitchell suggest that the imposition of a dollar charge for travelers using the renovated facility at the port could be deemed as “Fascist with all of the horrible connotation of that WORD!”

In suggesting that Chavez oppose freedom similar to Hitler; does the author want us to believe that there has been no free democratic election in Venezuela over the past ten years? We know that there have been at least three presidential elections and two parliamentary elections and one recall-referendum, all were internationally monitored by EU and the OAS and declared free and transparent by all the observers including the US press. Having been elected president three times by large majorities in less than nine years it’s more than a little ironic that the author accuses him of behaving undemocratically. Does the writer want us to believe that there should be no grounds on which to sanction a media outlet in a democratic nation? Certainly Vincentians know that many of the major democracies set out and enforce broadcasting standards e.g. England, Canada, New Zealand just to name a few. Is it that the author want us to believe that there is no other media outlet through which those critical of Chavez can voice just criticisms?

The writer alleges that Chavez doesn’t want his people to have a high standard of living! – It is well known that the standard of living indicators has spiked under the Chavez government with the key economic indicators and the demography and social indicator headed in the right directions. The GDP since 2003 has averaged above 10%. The poor particularly those living in “shanty towns” has been the main beneficiaries of this growth even the White House and Fox News Channel do not deny this. Does poverty really breed content and quietness among the populace? What nonsense!

Does Ms. Mitchell conclusions which led to her evocation of; “Fascist with all of the horrible connotation of that WORD!” (Adolph-Hitler-ish) merit an intelligent response? Hell No!!

Ms. Mitchell claims that the net income to be generated from the imposition on the “one dollar tax” would be very little. If her financial analyses are accurate and given all the other possible ramifications then the nation has every right to question the merits of its imposition and take necessary legitimate action including political sanction if we are not happy with the responses, but certainly this does not give a license to Ms. Mitchell to insult our intelligence by evocation of the political environment which gave rise to the Holocaust. Ms Mitchell should know that Fascism of that kind can only be effected in a militaristically control, centralized State in which there is no just ways of recourse. Stop insulting our people, our justice system and our constitution.

Tyrone Jack