Accuracy in Media

AMNESTY PLAN ADVANCES NORTH AMERICAN UNION

Rep. Edward Royce, a high-ranking conservative California Republican, says that a White House-backed amnesty plan for illegal aliens has provisions which undermine the national sovereignty of the U.S. and help facilitate development of a North American Union, much like the European Union that supersedes the sovereignty of 27 European countries. He vowed to defy the White House and mobilize House Republicans against the bill, backed by what he called the “open borders lobby.”

Accuracy in Media has published several articles about the North American Union, the creation of which has been ignored by most of the media, except for Lou Dobbs of CNN and some conservative talk-radio hosts.

AIM editor Cliff Kincaid attended a Washington conference devoted to developing a North American legal system that included literature outlining the creation of a North American Supreme Court. However, conservative radio host Michael Medved has openly ridiculed those who are covering this issue, and Fox News won’t touch it.

In the latest developments, Judicial Watch, the public interest law firm, has uncovered federal documents indicating that secretive “working groups” in the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP), a Bush Administration initiative, are working on a “One Card” concept to facilitate cross-border movement between the three countries. The SPP is being sold to the public as an attempt to help business, but the documents indicate a far-reaching effort to erase national borders and even national identity. Previous documents released by Judicial Watch through the Freedom of Information Act reveal a strategy called “evolution by stealth” to undermine the sovereignty of the three countries. That suggests a determined effort to keep this from the American people.

It may be difficult for the rest of the media to continue ignoring the controversy because opposition to the SPP is growing not only in the U.S. but in Canada and Mexico as well. 

Royce Speaks Out

Speaking to the California Republican Assembly (CRA) on April 21, Royce, the Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade, warned the audience that the Bush Administration is failing to protect U.S. borders not only from entry by illegal aliens but from potential terrorists. He disclosed that Bush has complained to congressional Republicans that some of his friends are not happy with the building of a border fence between the U.S. and Mexico. But the building of such a barrier is the law, Royce emphasized.

Delivering a wide-ranging attack on the Bush-backed amnesty scheme, Royce said that one of the laughable “enforcement” provisions of the bill requires that illegal aliens caught in the U.S. be provided with individual and group counseling, recreational programs, special religious services, private toilet and shower facilities, and clothes that are not “prison-style uniforms or jumpsuits.”

Under the bill, he continued, amnesty recipients will receive Social Security benefits for their illegal work, costing billions of dollars and draining more money from the Social Security Trust Fund. And once they become citizens and qualify for welfare, Royce said the additional cost to American taxpayers will be $30 billion per year.  He said the bill even allows U.S. companies under certain conditions to fire American workers and hire foreigners.

Reading from a congressional analysis of the bill, H.R. 1645, which is co-sponsored by Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez, a Democrat, and Rep. Jeff Flake, a Republican, Royce said not only does it propose “mass amnesty” for illegals but sets out an “immigration security strategy for North America” and “a common security perimeter” for the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Such terms suggest creation of a North American Union. The bill, formally titled, “Security Through Regularized Immigration and a Vibrant Economy Act of 2007,” is considered the House version of the Sen. Ted Kennedy amnesty bill in the Senate. Its amnesty provision is being euphemistically labeled a “pathway to citizenship” for most of the 12 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. 

Royce called attention to Section 113 of the bill, “Reports on Improving the Exchange of Information on North American Security,” which also says the three countries should develop “common” biometric identification and security documents.

Targeting Republicans

He told the CRA, a conservative group within the California Republican Party, that the bill, if passed, would lead to more illegal immigration into the U.S. That was the result, he said, of the 1986 amnesty plan passed by Congress. Mincing no words in his condemnation of the White House, Royce said the Bush Administration is not adequately enforcing current immigration laws and not supporting the border patrol.

The latter was evident when Joe Loya spoke to the hundreds in attendance at the CRA conference. The father-in-law of Ignacio Ramos, one of two federal border patrol agents sentenced to prison for their handling of a case involving a Mexican drug smuggler, Loya said the Bush Administration’s prosecution of the case has emotionally and financially devastated his family.

Agents Ramos and Jose Compean are serving 12 and 11-year sentences, and Ramos was recently assaulted in prison by criminal aliens who recognized him on television. Many members of the CRA audience expressed shock at the case and came up to offer Loya and his family financial support. Loya said the financial costs, which include appealing the verdict in the case, are substantial and rising. Loya was scheduled to leave California for Washington, D.C. to participate in the “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” April 22-25 event on real immigration reform. Dozens of conservative talk-show hosts from around the country participated. A “Defend Those Who Defend Us” forum was held in support of the border patrol.

Loya told AIM that conservative talk radio has been absolutely essential to getting out the story. In terms of television, he gave special thanks to Lou Dobbs of CNN for covering the case. 

The case against Ramos and Compean was brought by Johnny Sutton, the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas, who was appointed by President Bush. Sutton, who works with the Mexican consulate in order to find illegal alien “victims” of border patrol agents, previously worked for then-governor Bush and before that was a television commentator for the Spanish language network Univision.

Royce is one of almost 100 members of Congress who have endorsed H.R. 563, a congressional pardon for Ramos and Compean, calling their convictions and sentencing an “extreme injustice.” 

New Film Exposes Border War

As part of the “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event, the Federation for American Immigration Reform held a screening of the new film “Border” at the Union Station Phoenix Theatre in Washington, D.C. At the screening, the courageous director, Chris Burgard, spoke, and national radio talk-show host G. Gordon Liddy delivered the opening remarks.

Before the movie began, Burgard told the capacity crowd that it took two years to make the film, and that he funded it out of his own pocket.

The film shows how illegal aliens are bankrupting the California healthcare system because of the law mandating that no one can be turned down at a hospital emergency room regardless of citizenship or health insurance.

Rising healthcare costs and closing hospitals are not the only health effects of the porous borders. The film also discusses how deadly communicable diseases, once wiped out in the U.S., are returning, brought into America by illegals.

Burgard and his crew also went down to the border and spent time with the Minutemen organization, including going out on patrol along the border. In one scene, using night-vision cameras, Burgard and his crew are stationed at a border crossing and witness well-armed paramilitary soldiers escorting drug mules across the border.

Citizen Patriots

The film shows that the Minutemen, labeled racists by the open-borders lobby and vigilantes by President Bush, are Americans who love their country and want to help the Border Patrol agents.

In this context, it is a war. And it is a war as real as the one in Iraq. The difference is that the federal resources devoted to protecting our borders are miniscule, compared to the costs of Iraq.

The film demonstrates in graphic terms how illegal immigration has left the Southwest United States a wasteland, even a landfill, where jugs of water, backpacks of personal belongings, and food supplies have simply been discarded at gathering points for illegals along the border.

To a complete round of boos by the audience, the film shows President Bush talking about “immigration reform” in his 2006 State of the Union address while Congress gives him a standing ovation.

The unspoken implication of the film, in the current political and security climate, is that Bush may go down in history as the President who may lose two wars?in Iraq and on our own southern border. Plus, the Bush Administration is helping create a Muslim state in Kosovo, which is seeking independence from Serbia.

Ironically, Bush fights Congress for funds for our troops in Iraq, saying that the U.S. can’t surrender in the Middle East, but it seems he wants to raise the white flag on our very own southern border, where the stakes are just as high. He fights the Democrats on Iraq but wants to strike a deal with them on immigration.

Losing The Other War

Why is Bush so concerned about Iraq and so seemingly unconcerned about defending and protecting the U.S.? Is it worth saving Iraq if we lose American sovereignty in the process?

An objective observer might respond that we can save Iraq while assuring America’s survival. But this President seems to have no intention of doing both. Under these circumstances, viewers of the film are left with an almost helpless feeling that the open-borders lobby has won.

The movie closes when the audience hears from a Minuteman who says he is not giving up, that he will continue to do what is right, and that it is “Time to put pride back in America.” This statement received a huge response from the audience. It is the Minuteman’s response that gives the audience hope.

NBC’S BLOODY VIRGINIA TECH COVER-UP

One of the unanswered questions about the Virginia Tech rampage is why the killer, Cho Seung-Hui, sent his materials to NBC News, and why, after planning the killings well in advance, he decided to carry out the massacre on April 16. Since we believe that NBC’s sensational broadcast of the material was terribly irresponsible and could very well inspire copycat killings, we were intrigued to learn that Phil Mushnick of the New York Post reported that Cho, who, by many accounts, watched TV a lot, may have watched an edition of “Dateline NBC” just hours before he went on his killing spree. The “Dateline” story was about John Hyde, a mentally ill man who killed five people in 2005.

Could this have convinced Cho that NBC was the right vehicle for the story he wanted to be told to the nation?

Cho’s decision to send his “manifesto” to NBC is significant and requires an explanation. Did he just pick NBC out of a hat? Not likely. NBC itself has no explanation and perhaps doesn’t want us to know.

Cho’s fascination with the media was apparent in his reference in the materials to the Columbine killers in Colorado being martyrs. Cho was obviously somebody who followed the news. One of his roommates was quoted by the Associated Press as saying that Cho “usually worked alone on his computer and watched TV, including Friday night wrestling. He was always alone in the dining hall, watching TV, working out with weights in the gym. He rarely spoke to anyone.”

Media Martyr

Isn’t it interesting how TV was a big focus of his activities? It is clearly the case that Cho saw himself as another media martyr.

On Sunday night, just before the massacre on April 16, “Dateline NBC” was on the air with a story about another mentally disturbed individual who went on a killing rampage.

Ominously, the subheadline over the Hyde story on the MSNBC website, after it was broadcast, was: “Why wasn’t a mentally ill man stopped before he started his brutal rampage?” Doesn’t that sound suspiciously like the headlines over stories about the Cho case a few days later? NBC correspondent Rob Stafford concluded the story about Hyde by referring to “the nagging fear that this could happen again.” It did. What was the NBC role in provoking it?

Mushnick reports that “?the numerous similarities between the Hyde and Cho stories are inescapable. So is the timing. Cho’s rampage began fewer than 12 hours after NBC’s episode about Hyde ended. And Cho interrupted his rampage only to send NBC a you-pushed-me-to-do-this missive.”

As Mushnick says, “?even if it’s all just a matter of bizarre, chilling coincidences, those coincidences seem too great to ignore or dismiss. They’re worthy of your attention.” There may be something in the materials Cho sent to NBC on this. However, the network would not release all of them for further inspection. NBC said it decided to show two minutes of 25 minutes of video, seven of 43 photographs and 37 sentences of 23 pages of written material.

Good Journalism? 

NBC News President Steve Capus calls NBC’s handling of the material “good journalism.” NBC anchor Brian Williams says the story was too important not to air but NBC News is withholding parts of the story from the public. Why? Is there something in the materials that bears on the issue of why NBC was chosen for this message and whether the “Dateline” story on Hyde pushed Cho over the edge?

We know that the “Dateline” report aired on April 15 and the package to NBC was postmarked 9:01 a.m. on April 16, apparently between the times he committed a double murder and then walked across campus and killed 30 other students and teachers. Did Cho watch the “Dateline” story about Hyde the night before his massacre? Did he interpret the story as a sign that NBC would be sympathetic to his plight?

Howard Kurtz, who is supposed to be a media critic for the Washington Post, is perfectly suited to investigate this matter. However, he wrote a long puff piece about NBC News president Capus in the April 30 edition of his paper. “Even as critics accused him of caving to pressure in dropping MSNBC’s simulcast of the Imus show and, later, of giving a mass murderer the infamy he craved Capus won plaudits at 30 Rock [Rockefeller Plaza] for his consensus-building style,” reports Kurtz. The plaudits came from Jeff Zucker, NBC’s chief executive, and Tom Brokaw, former anchorman of the NBC Nightly News.

The Kurtz column demonstrates what is wrong with the news business and what is wrong with what passes for media criticism. These people are too busy patting each other on the back. 

Fire Capus

Rather than basking in the limelight of a Post article, Capus should be out of a job. He ordered the firing of Don Imus because of offensive comments only to turn around and order the airing of a carefully selected portion of videotape, photos and writings sent to NBC from the Virginia Tech killer. The purpose was to exploit a tragedy for ratings and profits.

It would have been one thing to cover the material as a news story and make it available to the public on a website. AIM never opposed making all of the information available to the public in a thoughtful manner. Instead, NBC News puts its logo, including the NBC peacock, on the material and trumpeted it on the air, making sure other news organizations gave NBC due “credit” for using it. On the NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams even asked viewers to tune into the next day’s Today Show to see more of the mass murderer’s “multimedia manifesto.” It was not good journalism. It was sick.

The network hype given to the story in advance and the sensational treatment produced big ratings for NBC News. As Lisa de Moraes of the Post reported, NBC’s flagging Nightly News “edged ahead” of ABC’s World News Tonight to get the top spot. The corks were popping at NBC News.

While NBC News got the attention of the voyeurs, the families and friends of the victims were outraged that the network had taken the attention away from those who were murdered. NBC claimed that federal and state authorities had approved release of the material but that turned out to be a lie. 

Going On Oprah

“In the face of an enormous backlash over Cho’s hate-filled video, Capus flew to Chicago last week and defended himself on ‘Oprah’?an unusually public posture for a man who generally labors in relative anonymity,” Kurtz reported.

This says something about Oprah, too. She provided a national platform to the members of the Rutgers women’s basketball team who were the targets of Imus’s insult. But then, in the wake of the Virginia Tech massacre, she turned around and provided a platform to Capus and Brian Williams, anchorman of the NBC Nightly News, to defend their decision to air it.

AIM was at the annual meeting of GE, the parent company of NBC News and MSNBC, calling for Capus to be fired. Our criticism of how NBC handled the killer videos was the subject of news reports around the country. But Kurtz, a media critic, didn’t report that. GE chairman Jeffrey Immelt was so angered by the criticism that he cut off AIM editor Kincaid’s microphone when he was making the case for Capus’ firing in front of hundreds of shareholders. 

What You Can Do

Please send the enclosed postcard to PBS president Paula Kerger. Send the other cards to AIM if you would like a copy of the “Television’s Vietnam” DVD and the special analysis of the “immigration reform” bill.




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