Wednesday, October 04, 2006

More craziness in Miami again: When will the Herald ever learn?

This time the publisher of the Miami Herald, Jesus Diaz Jr, has quit over the whole journalist-government-propaganda-payolla thing. You see, Diaz apparently thought that journalists working for El Nuevo Herald, the anit-Castro rag, accepting money from the US government to spread propaganda was, in his words, "a breach of widely accepted principles of journalistic ethics.. . . I personally don't believe that integrity and objectivity can be assured if any of our reporters receive monetary compensation from any entity that he or she may cover or have covered, but particularly if it's a government agency."

What planet is this guy on? Or, should I say, which country does he think he's living in? Perhaps Mr. Diaz hasn't been in Miami long enough to remember the old Miami tourism slogan, "Miami: The rules are different here."

Anyway, Diaz -- thinking that he was in the United States -- went ahead and fired these upstanding Castro-haters. Predictably, the Cuban/American "exile" community went ballistic. According to the Guardian:

"The dismissals caused a furor among members of Miami's Cuban-American community, which responded with canceled subscriptions and attacks on Diaz and some of the newspaper's editors and journalists in letters and e-mails. Critics also said Diaz reacted too quickly and harshly wnet ahead and fired them! As it turns out, Diaz got canned and the journalists get their jobs back.

No biggie, though, it's not like El Nuevo Herald is really a newspaper anyway. It's just the Herald's way of trying to prove that they really are anti-Castro. It's all so pointless, though, because no matter what they do they will never be able to convince the exilios that the Herald isn't a mouth piece for "the Monster."

In the past they've gone to ridiculous lengths not to even risk offending that small number of whackos who can turn Miami upside down with a call to Radio Mambi. They've even gone as far as to pull an entire issue of Tropic Magazine because of a headline which read "No Mas" over a picture of Jorge Mas Canossa, who had died a few days before. Then, of course, there was the most recent attempt to stifle Carl Hiassen. (That worked out well.) [I'm getting the idea that McClatchy has no idea what they got themselves into by purchasing this paper.]

I still remember the riots after Elian was taken by the feds when I saw old Cuban men rampaged down Flagler boulevard kicking over Miami Herlad newspaper boxes as they went. Whoever the next publisher of the Herald is they ought to keep in mind that they're the mouthpeice of Castro no matter what they do.

Rehiring those shills is a good start, though.


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