News items: Pro-what?

[Sunday]

In lieu of a decent post, here I rant about the dissembling of TV journalism.

Democracy? Reform?
Ah, the wonders of imperial discourse.

I learned the following from a news broadcast by the BBC:

Serbia now has a “pro-reform” government. How nice.

What else to say about it?

Well, it is comprised of the “pro-democracy” parties. So in favour of democracy that they have prevented the radical nationalist party taking power. You know, the one that won the elections in January?

But that’s okay, because these “pro-democracy” guys are more amenable to the EU. (And NATO, perhaps?) Yep, these guys won’t complain that Kosovo’s economy has been privatised.

Of course, they’ll have to pretend. We know they are our kind of guys, but they might have to let on that they’re not.

Ah, reform is so wonderful. Unless it is bad reform. Bad old economic protectionism…

Sometimes we practice economic protectionism. That’s okay sometimes, but only if we’re doing it.

But he’s our bastard!
And here’s what else I learned from the good old BBC: Pakistan has a military leader. I’m not sure what this means, but it doesn’t sound too bad, does it?

There’s been some violence in Pakistan and 30 people have been killed.

President Musharraf sacked the Chief Justice, a fellow named Chaudhry, because he was getting in the way. See, he took the whole rule of law thing too seriously. He was concerned about corruption, and other matters that should be ignored by judges.

Laws are good, just as long as they keep the right people in power. And democracy is good, just as long as it keeps the right people in power.

So, anyway. Apparently things are bad in Pakistan. But they can’t be that bad: the BBC would tell us what to think. Pakistan is not “strife-torn”. Yet.

All right. Enough sarcasm. The truth is, the Pakistani government has been clamping down on protest. But there has been no international outcry.

No one is will try to stop Pakistan playing a role in the UN or stop Musharraf travelling to Europe to promote his book.

See, the government of Pakistan buys our weapons (instead of spending money helping earthquake survivors) and does our bidding. Mostly. We won’t kick up a fuss about anything that goes on in Pakistan because it is strategically important.

Sure, there will pretend criticism. But there won’t be talk about sanctions. And it won’t be claimed that protestors were killed by order of the “military leader”.

And we won’t stop playing cricket with Pakistan…

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