Agencia Peru x Radio Orión: The Artlessness of the Gabbling Ratfink
Eloy Jong Meza bashes Alan Garcia’s visit to Pisco. Source: YouTube, posted by Jong Meza’s production company. Video uploading … Your infotainment is ready.

What is most interesting about Agencia Peru‘s videoscandal ratfinking of Eloy Yong Meza as a proxy for Peru’s APRA government — see Peru: “Rashomon at Radio Orion” — is its technical resemblance to similar specious videoscandals I have seen in the course of my field collecting of botanical specimens of the genus and species. Perhaps most notably

Like that TV-Bahia/Jornal Nacional “report” from Brazil, for example, the fallacy of specious generalization is used heavily.

Three men are shown saying that “I heard it” — the figure of 8.4 on the Richter scale as the strength of the August earthquake — “from Eloy Yong Meza.”

They are shown saying it more than once.

The reporter concludes, “Everyone says they heard it from Eloy Yong Meza.”

The report does not identify the persons saying this.

The report also does not show Yong Meza broadcasting this alleged disinformation, but rather establishes the (specisou) inference that he did so by showing that (1) “everyone” believes it and (2) “everyone” says they heard if from Radio Orión.

It’s what I tend to like to call the “one-sparrow Spring” fallacy.

This is, of course, textbook gibbering bullshit.

AP is a BBC content partner, apparently. I certainly hope the sludge does not flow in both direction along the shared pipeline.

On the textbook, see

In that TV Bahia report, likewise, the “reporter” asks one or two persons if they have heard of the quilombo, then concludes “no one in the community has ever heard of it.”

Globo’s Web site, as you recall, actually falsified the transcript of its own segment to make this inference appear more categorical.

Also interesting are Agencia Peru’s recent effort to perpetuate the notion that the opposition La República daily of Lima was and is “owned” by special interests tied to Fujimori and Vladimir Montesinos. See

At the moment, AP features another “exposé” on its Web site at the moment purporting to show that the son of the late owner, who inherited the business, was “favored with multimillion-dollar contracts.” More on that later.

For more reasons why trying to be an honest journalist in Peru has got to be one of the shittiest jobs in the world, see

Another feature of this genre of pseudojournalistic gibbering ratfink, I find — it is only an incidental correlation, but it often holds true — is the use of a cinematic soundtrack behind what purports to be news reporting.

The other day, for example, I saw a segment on Wolf Blitzer’s show on CNN about Nazi skinhead gangs in Israel.

CNN had added an soundtrack of head-banging Nazi skinhead rock music to give the segment more oomph.

Which is why I think you could fairly call the kind of confabulating infotainment you are looking at here a form of “Wolf Blitzerism.”

More when I get a chance.

Two risk-management takeaways:

  1. It must really, really suck to be Peruvian
  2. Aid donors might want to dispatch some beancounters, pronto.

Still to follow up on: The case of the Jesuit-run radio Cutivalú. They apparently objected to some sort of land-grab going on in the mining sector, based on some sort of local referendum. What is that all about? Is it a perfect case in point for Naomi Klein’s new book? Kind of sounds like it.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s