By on June 1, 2009

TTAC’s Google ranking on the whole GM bankruptcy deal has delivered unto us a few shout-outs from the MSM. Now that the C11 deed is done, public radio’s “The Takeaway” ’phoned this afternoon—to ask what they should ask GM marketing maven and dealer destroyer Mark LaNeve. Other than that, Al Jazeera. The Arab TV service called to arrange to interview about the collapse of the artist formerly known as the world’s largest automaker. I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, I’m worried that the network might use my comments about GM’s epic fail, the federal government’s abandonment of free market principles and GM’s bleak future to fuel the fires of anti-Americanism. I am, believe it or not, a patriot. On the other hand, it is what it is. America’s greatest strength is our citizens’ freedom of speech. Of course, I would say that, wouldn’t I? What say you? Should I accept or decline this invitation to discuss the dark side of America’s corporate culture and centralized governance?

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114 Comments on “Ask the Best and Brightest: Should I Appear on Al Jazeera?...”


  • avatar
    skor

    Refusing to appear just makes you look like an ass-lick for Israel in their eyes, which I think is even worse.

    The truth is what it is, irrespective of how some people may spin it. Just remember this when when speaking of GM:

    De mortuis nil nisi bonum dicendum est.

  • avatar

    That said, GM reminds us that deficit omne quod nasciture.

    RF

  • avatar
    roadscholar

    During my 2 week stay in Paris a few years ago I thoroughly enjoyed watching the english Al Jazeera channel. The most objective news reporting I’ve seen from a 24 hour news channel. It was refreshing.

  • avatar
    kipp

    Long-time visitor, first time commentor

    Al-jazeera English is absolutely not some Anti-American, evil media company. It’s a very neutral network that brings a world perspective to the otherwise American media company dominated (CNN, MSNBC, FOX) American TV landscape.

    For all the people who are going to flame, do some research first. The only thing most people know of them is that they aired Osama’s messages on the air: This wasn’t an endorsement of his ideas, just very topical and relevant information to the world.

    Wikipedia says, “willingness to broadcast dissenting views”
    A lot like TTAC

  • avatar
    ajla

    Yes, as long as you wear an American flag tie or a cowboy hat.

  • avatar
    texmln

    I say go on but only if you spend all your time making that shrill hooting sound Arabs make when they’re celebrating the murder of Americans. Just tell them you’re celebrating the death of GM.

  • avatar
    Lokkii

    There’s nothing wrong with talking about cars with someone that you suspect might be the devil… Just don’t start talking about politics.

  • avatar
    johnny ro

    Agree, its like Arab BBC sort of. Its the opposite of Al Queda.

    Have no fears, of foreign evil-doer variety.

    The problem is the story takes too long to tell. The depth of content is breathtaking, and goes past GM to larger US economy which is headed nowhere fast.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    There is nothing wrong with going on Al Jezeera. I would go for it. Obviously you have control over what you say, and I would urge you to think out very carefully ahead of time what the three main points you wish to make are. Don’t do an off the cuff rant.

  • avatar
    Billy Bobb 2

    Sure, go ahead.
    The Arabic term for your role would be “dhimmi”.

  • avatar
    Rastus

    Why Hell Yes!!!

    But you should REALLY insist on Mr. Pete “Why, I never go to your God Damn website anyway…no one gives a shit about you.” DeLorenzo’s company.

    Variety is the spice of life, right?

    OMG…I just went there for a moment- and it’s a raving review of his 10th year anniversary. Not ONE WORD of the greatest event in automotive history in the past 100 years….that is, the final nail in GM’s coffin.

    Narcissism is like that. What a freakin’ ego.

  • avatar

    I’m with kipp, everything I’ve heard indicates that Al Jazeera is not the monstrous hate network they’re made out to be. I think that’s more of a politically convenient falsehood devised to rile up more FUD in the US back in the early aughts. It’s a news network, at worst the equivalent of Fox News to the Arabian world, at best a CNN. Don’t run away from opportunity.

    I say go on; more exposure means more clicks. Do it.

  • avatar
    apt34

    It depends… Al Jazeera English is actually pretty unique (separate from regular Al jazeera). They’re actually fairly balanced and not anti-American or overtly anti-anything whatsoever.

  • avatar
    kurtamaxxguy

    what skor said, and…

    If you accept, you’ll have more control over and can elaborate on comments you’ve made.

  • avatar
    KixStart

    Do it.

  • avatar
    SLLTTAC

    Why help those who would treat you as a second-class person if they would even let you in their countries?

  • avatar
    N85523

    I’d say go ahead, but proceed cautiously.

    I took 5 years of Latin and still have no idea what you and skor said to each other. I admire your tenacity of the language.

  • avatar
    pleiter

    Well, yes, you should engage. But, bone up on aspects of the probability of some form of hike in petroleum tax. It’s probably what they want to get a pulse on, and they might think you the oracle of delphi, now.

  • avatar
    CopperCountry

    Do it. You can explain to the world how GM’s demise was not a failure of capitalism. If free market principles had been allowed to run their course, GM would’ve rightfully been punished by the market for their decades of misguided management. And an opportunity to demonstrate the inherent rightness of the free market has been wasted.

  • avatar
    fisher72

    I read the english version a lot for oil & gas news. They have a lot of good reporting of all sorts. Yes you should do the interview and say it as it is.

  • avatar
    BDB

    Yes. Do it. Any American goes on that channel has real balls.

  • avatar

    in the last week I’ve been on Russian State Television and interviewed by Mainichi newspaper from Japan. easier to go on Lehrer NewsHour (was on tonite) or Car Concerns Radio, but what the heck, spread it around the world.

    Go for it Robert!

  • avatar
    JT

    If you don’t, you will be seen to lack the courage of your convictions.

    Umm, Rastus? He publishes on Wednesday.

  • avatar
    paulie

    RF
    Freedom of speach is one thing, giving ammunition to the enemy is a whole different thing.
    I would feel more comfortable if I knew the editing was not going cut and pasted to the point I don’t even recognize myself.
    And its not like you have any position to view before publication.
    This is difficult enough with unbiased (am I dreaming) media than this rag.
    You can’t trust anybody anymore.
    And your words and opinion are important to you and TTAC.

  • avatar
    ragtopman

    A word of advice from a journalist: Go ahead, but be circumspect about it. Know that not all of what you say — or most, even — will be heard by the public. Be wary of leading questions or even an agenda.

    Just approach it like a CNN interview.

  • avatar
    autobahner44

    El Paso.

  • avatar
    don1967

    Do it. Wear a big cowboy hat and a stars & stripes shirt, and speak the truth. As a patriot you should do nothing less.

  • avatar
    SLLTTAC

    De mortuis nil nisi bonum dicendum est.

    Of the dead, nothing is said unless it is good.

  • avatar
    Nicholas Weaver

    I’m not familiar with Al Jezeera’s broadcast operation, but their online news site has a very good reputation.

  • avatar
    skor

    @SLLTTAC,

    Right. When speaking of the dead, don’t gloat, smirk, sound happy, talk trash, or pat yourself on the back about how you were right — even if you hated their guts. It makes you look like an obese douchbag….er, I mean Michael Moore.

  • avatar
    troonbop

    I’ll let you worry about the larger implications, Robert, but you might encounter a little weasel named Avi Lewis who was groomed at Canada’s public broadcaster. Please tell him to eat shit and die. Thanks.

  • avatar

    Wikipedia says, “willingness to broadcast dissenting views”

    Has Al Jezeera ever presented a pro-Israel point of view?

  • avatar

    I’d do it. The audience is probably very curious as to how a major company from the major country folds up and dies.

    This is not the Palestine-Israel horror show, so don’t pay attention to those with that ax to grind. There’s a lot of “arabia” which is not related to that story.

    Mosaic TV gets a lot of arabic translated, so if you have Dish, record some of it…very interesting.

    A few weeks ago, I was interviewed by Romanian TV concerning photo stoplights. The world is now small and flat, so we can’t really say “over there” anymore.

  • avatar
    Rastus

    JT- Lately…with all the “big news” occurring in such rapid-fire motion…Pete has been publishing his “Wednesday” articles on Monday.

    His “Monday June 01, 2009” article again…is about himself.

    Never mind the 14 plant closures, never mind the impact this will have on hundreds of thousands of individuals, suppliers, local communities….nope.

    Fuck it. Today is about Pete.

    Gotta love it!!!

    >>>>Speaking of “No Fly Lists”…PLEASE don’t let them scan your body and genitalia at the airport. If you have to …have a homosexual pat you down…at least you will not be digitized in a database somewhere.

  • avatar
    walksatnight

    Depends.

    Generous Mother is now known as Government Motors.

    Is your tax return in good shape? Are you prepared to have the IRS crawl through your shorts?

    Oh and have fun on the No Fly List…..

    If you can handle that then let ‘er Rip!

  • avatar
    darkwing

    If it is in fact Al Jazeera English, go for it. (But I certainly wouldn’t blame you for watching your phrasing more closely than usual.) If it’s the main Al Jazeera — and I’m not sure why they’d specifically be calling — then I’d be hesitant.

  • avatar
    Richard Chen

    Go for it – TTAC can always use some more eyeballs, and with new readers we could be in for some interesting capsule reviews we wouldn’t see otherwise.

    And if you’ve got one of those GM pins that gives a target market percentage, say, 29, wear it.

  • avatar

    Just get Schmitty to write your copy for you first!! :D

  • avatar
    ExtraO

    I haven’t been watching them lately, but I was a subscriber to their internet broadcasting (a duplicate of their cable TV feed) for over a year when they first went live. They were very even-handed. Much more so than any of the US commercial networks. Go on!

  • avatar
    AuricTech

    I’m inclined to say you should go for it, with one caveat (which applies not only to Al Jazira, but to any media outlet):

    You should consider requiring that the media outlet allow you to independently record the interview. That way, if the interview is edited in such a way as to materially change the meaning of your comments, you have documentation of what really transpired.

  • avatar
    njgreene

    Speak the truth, and the truth will set you free. Play on Robert, I loved your podcasts, and this seems like a good way to get the message out.

  • avatar
    Hippo

    AJ is about as neutral as one can get, like any major network from Asia or Europe, far better then our MSM.

  • avatar
    NickR

    When did the phrase ‘Government Motors’ first appear? Was it here at TTAC and when? The CBC has picked up on it and was using the phrase tonight.

  • avatar
    andyinsdca

    Al Jezeera has been reaching out to all kinds of different talking heads recently about the American economic crises. They hunted down (at his home, no less!) one of the drive-time guys from KFI-AM, John & Ken to talk about the mess here in California.

    I’d say do it. And let us know when you’re on so we can…er…not see it (friggin Cox cable)

  • avatar
    h82w8

    Go for it. I’m sure you can handle AJ. They probably recognize they can get an unvarnished opinion on the subject from you versus other automotive writers. Your viewpoint hasn’t changed since you started writing your Death Watch series, in contrast to all the other polyannish media types who denied the truth until this morning’s C11 filing. So, congratulations…you are now an internationally recognized authority!

  • avatar

    When I was in Iraq, we had an al Jazeera news crew come through to do some interviews with the top brass. As it was explained to me by my C.O. and Public Affairs Officer, there are essentially two “al Jazeeras.” One is fair and balanced (not quite in the Fox News way!), while the other allows the more extremist view points. The latter is the one that is demonized here in America for what amounts to their hate-speech against the U.S. The former is often overlooked.

    When it came time to take my four-day pass, I was flown to Doha, Qatar, where (according to Wiki) al Jazeera is based. That city is about as westernized as any in America, except for the men wear robes and the women wear head scarves and robes. And not all of them covered their faces under the scarves. Their shopping malls were the same (they wear western clothes under their robes… and the women could be seen with eye shadow and mascara, too), they had some “suburban” developments that mirror our own and the downtown Doha skyline looks much like Miami with all of the cranes and such.

    I got to wear civvies and walk among them at the malls and market tours. Sure, I didn’t relax my guard completely, but it was a world of difference compared to the ways that some of the Iraqis would look at me or my team.

    I guess my verdict is go for it. The very fact that they have asked you is probably proof enough that they do actually value your opinion. I’m guessing that it’s the “good” al Jazeera that will be doing the interviewing, and they’ll give you an honest shake.

  • avatar

    Absolutely positively not.

    There is a principle in property common law that goes back deep into English history, and remains in full force today in America, with the agreeably antique name of the Slayer Rule.

    In short, you cannot benefit financially from killing someone.

    While the American justice system has not been able to enforce the Slayer Rule against Osama bin Laden yet, you Robert Farago personally have a moral and a patriotic duty to not hurt our efforts by helping those who flout the moral principle underlying this rule.

    One of the key incentives for mass murder terrorism is that it brings attention to its perpetrators’ insane beliefs. Remember Al Jazeera didn’t just air Osama’s propaganda tapes once in a single lapse of judgment, and which is bad enough, but airs them regularly and eagerly as heavily promoted “exclusives.” Which they are since Al Queda leaks the tapes directly to Al Jazeera’s people. It also gives airtime to others those who defend the mass murder of Americans, though not engaging in it themselves.

    I don’t think Al Jazeera’s management actually agrees with bin Laden. But they are happy to promote him and give him tens of millions of dollars worth of free and sometimes even positive publicity in an effort to make a buck. Any association with this network for these reasons is in my opinion immoral.

    In this sense Al Jazeera’s management reminds me of Fox News, which produced and recorded a gory and detailed “fictional” confession with OJ Simpson and then promoted it as a two-part special that was sure to be a ratings blockbuster.

    Unlike Al Jazeera, Fox had the good sense to cancel the airing of the interview, though only after many local stations said they would not air it, and a boycott campaign was organized with help from the Goldman family. It took an economic boycott threat to knock sense into the greedy cretins who run Fox. Al Jazeera has already pulled the trigger and participated in the PR campaign of murderer, and it must be boycotted.

    If you want PR, you might call up some local non-murderer-broadcasting media outlets, and let them know you turned down an Al Jazeera airtime, and see if they might let you make up for it.

  • avatar
    AlexD

    “Ronnie Schreiber :
    Wikipedia says, “willingness to broadcast dissenting views”
    Has Al Jezeera ever presented a pro-Israel point of view?”

    You mean like interviewing members of the Israeli Knesset or American neo-cons like Richard Armitage and The Prince of Darkness Richard Perle?

    Does that not qualify?

    Ridiculous question Robert – do the interview! Ghida Fakhry is a Lebanese hottie – get her autograph for me.

  • avatar
    dkulmacz

    Everyone seems to be concerned with the politics of the station. I don’t care about their politics.

    I’m just afraid that the normal viewers will link your opinions to the image ‘generic white American guy’ and then mistakenly believe that I or any other generic white American guy thinks the same way.

    Basically, I’m not so keen on you representing me — or America as a whole — on a popular, influential international forum.

    (And please, white knights, spare me the opinion that this is a popular, influential international forum.)

  • avatar
    WetWilly

    Go ahead and do it. Lots of people call you “The Great Satan” now, so what difference would an Al Jazeera appearance make?

  • avatar
    MBella

    After your Autoline endeavor, I don’t think you have anything to worry about. Go for it. As a writer, the more you get your name out only helps you in the long run, and it will help you get your name out into places that would otherwise never likely find TTAC.

  • avatar
    tparkit

    Shitcan it. Al Jazeera is waging peace. Their soft-jihad lies travel in a bodyguard of truth, which no patriot should be guilty of supplying.

  • avatar
    Edward Niedermeyer

    Of course. Yes. Absolutely.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    “…the artist formerly known as the world’s largest automaker”
    Repeatedly, that has been a great line.

    As for al Jazeera – sure, go ahead. Their audience wants to know about GM just like anyone else.

  • avatar

    RF,

    Al Jazeera is my favorite news media source. The anti-American sentiment most people associate with Al Jazeera is actually from a Saudi news organization.

    I still go to Al Jazeera to hear great reporting about areas Americans tend to forget. They had the best insight into the Gaza Strip conflict, as they were the only reporters actually IN the Gaza at the time.

    They have a slight bent towards the Muslim world, but if you can show me a completely unbiased organization, I will eat my burnt brake discs.

    While deployed to the Middle East, a lot of us would watch Al Jazeera instead of FoxNews and CNN as they actually reported the news. Fox and CNN would spin, spin, commentate, oh look, Paris Hilton! Our intel officer and I would always turn the tv in the chow hall (DFAC) to AJ during lunch and dinner, and eventually even the naysayers, the die-hard all American patriot (which really, we all were, or we wouldn’t BE there) realized it was actually a good broadcaster.

  • avatar
    escapenguin

    Guess who continually DDOSes their sites and those like them? We do. Fight the power!

  • avatar
    Martin Schwoerer

    If your research indicates they’re not pro-crime, then why not appear?

    If they’re borderline, like Hannity who says torture is good, then you can still do a Charles Grodin and confront them with their stupidity.

    If Al Jazeera were crime propagandists or haters like Savage, then saying no would probably be the thing to do. Just to protect the TTAC brand.

  • avatar
    Luther

    Al Jazeera aren’t a bunch of midevil quran-thumpers (Only when they feel the HAVE to be)…Just stick to the topic. Heck, BBC would spin into anti-Americanism before Al Jazeera !

  • avatar

    Do it.

    Can’t be any worse than CNBC’s talking head show.

  • avatar
    tate

    Appear on the show for you go there to bury Caesar, not to praise him.

    This could be something you would be proud of and tell your grandchildren.

    Are you not sick of thinking that everywhere we Americans go we are presumed to be the stereotype capitalist pigs who would sell their mothers to make money? go and be the change; show them that at least automotive journalism is is truly free.

    Also-

    in response to gregw :
    June 1st, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    “One of the key incentives for mass murder terrorism is that it brings attention to its perpetrators’ insane beliefs”.

    what would you say to Bush waging an entire war based on non existent WMDs and the mass hysteria /fear that he created? this was covered extensively by Fox?

    Just because Al Jazeera shows the other sided of the coin does not mean it is wrong or irresponsible or biased.

    Its just that some people do not wish to listen what the others have to say.

  • avatar
    Ronman

    Go for it RF…. just remember to be very clear of what you say so it isn’t spun the other way…. that’s the trick anyway in answering questions for TV. these days all the MSM (US primarily)just can’t wait for someone to screw up so they can miss interpret it and get a 15 second scoop of fame. that also counts for mistranslations.

    but about Jazeera, i don’t think they have anyone specialized enough (i meant by 260 GM death watches under his belt) to comment on the subject and clear the views. but being an Arab/middle eastern channel, you have to be clear on the fact that GM US is the one filling for bankruptcy and that GM Middle East is actually one of their most profitable proxy organizations…. and that Ch11 will not affect the regional market all that much other than bad press.

    that is if you want to say it as it is… just let us know when the interview will air…

  • avatar
    Phillip

    For anyone who thinks that Al-Jazeera is NOT an antisemitic hate fest, I insiste that you have a look at this site:

    http://www.memri.org/

    Really, really creepy stuff on there.

    When it comes to Jews and the Holocaust, the consensus is split into two camps: those that think it is a fabricated Jewish conspiracy, and those that think it did happen but it was a good idea.

  • avatar
    Jeff Puthuff

    I just browsed MEMRI. For what exactly am I looking? I see translations of multiple Middle Eastern media organizations. I see clips of Al-Jazeera broadcasts of religious wackos. I’ve seen similar clips on Fox News of Fred Phelps and his clan.

    I’m appalled by the notion that in the Middle East there are only two schools of thought regarding the Holocaust. That’s ignorant and doesn’t foster meaningful debate.

    I know a Holocaust survivor and an Iranian-born American citizen and I strongly suspect that neither of them would agree with that notion.

  • avatar
    Phillip

    I’ve seen similar clips on Fox News of Fred Phelps and his clan.

    Keep browsing, to call Fox news simply tame in comparison to Al-Jazeera Arabic is a monumental understatent.

    I’m appalled by the notion that in the Middle East there are only two schools of thought regarding the Holocaust.

    I too am appalled.

    At the university that I attend in Toronto Canada, we have a very large middle-eastern student body. When the issue of politics arises, the outright hate and racism which they display makes my stomach turn. Unfortunately this hateful attitute represent not a minority, but the mainstream population.

    http://www.newsweek.com/id/186974

    http://www.memri.org/antisemitism.html

    Now please show me something even remotely comparable that has been ever been broadcats on any Western TV channel. Keep in mind that many of the commentators are revered religious scholars and have a large following amongs the population.

    Sometimes the truth is not always politically correct.

  • avatar
    Kristjan Ambroz

    Go for it – from what I’ve seen or heard, Al Jazeera English really is a high quality news netweork. They apparently took many proper journalists on board, when other news networks decided to go down the entertainment, rather than news route. It shows.

  • avatar
    chun

    I watch all three news channels, CNN, BBC, and Al Jazeera and of them, I watch Al Jazeera the most as I find their coverage and analysis to be the fairest of all. Do keep in mind that Al Jazeera English and Al Jazeera Arabic are two very different news organizations. Please do talk on Al Jazeera.

  • avatar
    Jeff Puthuff

    Keep browsing

    Why not provide the courtesy of a link?

    to call Fox news simply tame in comparison

    I did no such thing.

    Unfortunately this hateful attitute [sic] represent not a minority, but the mainstream population.

    A small contingent of students at a Canadian university speaks for and represents a population of millions? What power!

    Now please show me something even remotely comparable that has been ever been broadcats on any Western TV channel.

    No, I’ll debunk your argument this way: at the MEMRI link you provided, I viewed the first seven analyses. Of these, one cited Al-Jazeera as source; another reports, “reformist writer Basem Muhammad Habib condemns the Holocaust denial in the Arab world.” (There goes that two-camp theory.)

    The titles and their sources:

    Egyptian Religious Endowments Ministry Official: The Pigs Living Today Are Descended from Jews – And Must Be Slaughtered—According to a May 9, 2009 report in the Jordanian Arabic-language news website http://www.factjo.com

    Articles in Syrian Government Dailies on ‘Bloodsucking,’ ‘Blood-Letting’ Jews—Recently, Syria’s government dailies have published antisemitic articles. In one, columnist Jallal Kheir Bekclaimed that the Jews sucked the blood from Jesus’ wounds during His crucifixion, and called for the Arabs, Muslims, and Christians to unite to defeat them.

    Arab Intellectual: The Holocaust Must Be Remembered by Everybody – For It Targeted the Very Essence of Humanity—In an article posted April 21, 2009 on the liberal Arab website http://www.elaph.com, reformist writer Basem Muhammad Habib condemns the Holocaust denial in the Arab world.

    Op-Ed on Official Iranian News Website: ‘You Could Never Find Even One Single Person Who Is an Auschwitz Survivor—In an April 21, 2009 op-ed on the website of the official Iranian news agency IRNA

    On Hamas TV, Friday Sermon Cites ‘Protocols of Elders of Zion,’ Calls to Annihilate the Jews, Compares Jews To Dogs—The following are excerpts from a Hamas Friday sermon, which aired on Al-Aqsa TV on April 3, 2009.

    Saudi Cleric Khaled Al-Khlewi Teaches Children to Hate Jews—Following are excerpts from an address by Saudi cleric Khaled Al-Khlewi, which aired on Al-Jazeera TV on January 11, 2009.

    Jews Portrayed as Blood Drinkers in Antisemitic Drama Aired on Hamas TV—The show aired on Al-Aqsa TV on April 4, 2009.

    Sorry, but I don’t see how this proves that Al-Jazeera English is an anti-Semitic “hate fest.” Yes, anti-Semitism exists in the Arab world, but, unfortunately, it does in Europe, Russia, US, and Canada, too. But that’s an issue for a different forum.

  • avatar

    Do it. No cowboy hat. No old glory shirt. Just be your RF self. And record the whole thing for a podcast.

  • avatar
    drifter

    If you seek the advise of GM’s commander in chief he will say Yes you can

  • avatar
    cleek

    Please do it, RF.

    And make an appeal for Al Qaeda to consider replacing the Toyota Land Cruiser with the Jeep Durango as the offical car. I know of two Durango owners in the military who would get great personal satisfaction when ordering a hellfire missle strike on same.

  • avatar
    Tuce

    You absolutely should appear. Al Jazeera English is an excellent news service and puts American MSM television news to shame in the professionalism of its reporters and anchors. I’m not sure how appearing on an Arabic satellite news channel implicates your patriotism.

  • avatar
    AKM

    Al Jazeera is far more objective than the major American cable news channels, and you remain in control of what you are saying, so I say: go for it!

  • avatar

    Do the interview. Al Jazeera is a lot more neutral on topics than Fox News. If you don’t then they will either find some nitwit who doesn’t know anything about the auto industry to do it or they will not do an interview at all and the chance to get well-reasoned commentary out there will be lost.

    It’s patriotic to let the Muslim community know what we think on various subjects.

  • avatar
    commando1

    Go on and proclaim that GM should bring back the Caprice or die. They’ll love you more than Allah.

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    Just make sure you wear a flag pin on your lapel.

    Hey, it works for politicians….

    -ted

  • avatar
    guyincognito

    Why would you appear on this station? Unbiased? Please. While every news station has an anti-Isreal bent, Al Jazeera certainly tops them all. Remember when they let Hamas use their office building to launch rockets at the IDF during the Gaza war, during a news cast? Whether or not their English branch is more nuetral than their Arab branch, the money all goes to the same place. They are part of the war against Isreal. Helping them generate revenue is immoral at best.

  • avatar
    John R

    Go for it. I don’t think Bin Laden is going to quote you on anything for justification on anything he does.

  • avatar
    Pig_Iron

    This is the only broadcast advice I know:

    When you’re getting paid per word, you know what to do; when your getting paid per listener/veiwer, slooow riiight dooown.

    Why? Because a reader has the luxury of going back to the paragraph before while a listener/viewer usually does not. Slowing down gives the receiver a chance to process the info flying by. Listen to how presidential speeches are presented for example.

    Good luck, it’s best to get the truth out.

  • avatar
    superbadd75

    Why not? The least they could do is take something you say out of context, and the U.S. media does that all the time. They couldn’t be any worse than the douche nozzles on CNBC (or whatever that cable news channel was) when they had you on regarding auto shows. Do it, and make America proud!

  • avatar
    William C Montgomery

    Do it. And wear your kippah.

  • avatar
    Steven Lang

    I would pass. The parent company has a very hateful agenda and I personally wouldn’t want to do anything that would benefit them.

    It’s almost as if a Nazi publication had an ‘American’ edition. Yes, they may be more moderate than their puppet masters. But the intent of the organization in the end is to cause murder and suffering to innocents. I wouldn’t want to contribute my time or my intelligence to that element.

  • avatar
    Garak

    Remember when they let Hamas use their office building to launch rockets at the IDF during the Gaza war, during a news cast?

    I don’t. Do you have a source for that?

    Remember Al Jazeera didn’t just air Osama’s propaganda tapes once in a single lapse of judgment, and which is bad enough, but airs them regularly and eagerly as heavily promoted “exclusives.”

    You know, Osama’s tapes are broadcasted on European news networks also.

    On the topic: go ahead and do the interview. I really can’t see why you shouldn’t.

  • avatar
    guyincognito

    @ Garak:

    My bad, it was Al Arabiya not Al Jazeera.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPDZYmcyzqA

    The point remains that their Arab branch actively campaigns against Isreal and should not be supported in any way, IMO.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    It’s like any other interview. If it gives you an opportunity to express your views (and promote the site), then yes, absolutely do it. If it gives them a chance to edit your words in ways that go against you, then pass.

    Al Jazeera English is aspiring to command the respect and quality of the BBC. It’s certainly credible enough, and being that it isn’t run by Americans, probably less emotional in its approach to the Detroit problem. You’d probably get a fairer shake there than on most US programs.

    The Arabic language one is supposedly a bit more, well, friendly to the Arabic-speaking man on the street. But that isn’t really any different than the difference between the quality aspirations of The Times versus Fox News, now is it?

  • avatar
    tedward

    No question, do it. The worst thing that could happen is they tie in with the Arabic network and you get stuck with an O’Reilly style interview. All this hyperventilating about evil agendas is nonsense.

  • avatar
    walkwalkfast

    It’s been said: Of course! Just insist on a copy of the full interview to re-post if something goes awry, spin-wise.

  • avatar
    wsn

    If speaking of the truth can negatively impact others’ perception of your patriotism of this country, then there is a problem with this country.

  • avatar
    golf4me

    I couldn’t think of anything more appropriate.

  • avatar
    Sigsworth

    If not you, then who?

    In other words, if you don’t do it, they’ll find someone else who will, and God knows what they’ll say.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Don’t believe what Fox News says – Al Jazeera is a perfectly respectable news organization.

  • avatar
    fincar1

    I am curious to hear how it goes.

    I repeat, get your own tape of the complete interview…although it sounds as though you may not need it.

  • avatar
    Aloysius Vampa

    carguy is correct. There is absolutely nothing wrong with Al Jazeera.

  • avatar
    Guzzi

    They’re the BBC news of the Arab world for what that’s worth, with slightly better vetting. I like their reporting.

  • avatar

    You mean like interviewing members of the Israeli Knesset or American neo-cons like Richard Armitage and The Prince of Darkness Richard Perle?

    Does that not qualify?

    Did any of them appear on Al Jezeera Arabic?

  • avatar

    Robert,

    There’s a few who don’t think you should, but there are many more who think you should, including two of us who have “been there and done that” in uniform in the middle east. One of us flies jets and drives a sweet Porsche, the other worked in the highly controversial world of detention operations on the ground (and doesn’t have an equally sweet GT-R).

    I don’t often watch the videos from this site, because my internet is slow, but I would watch your interview if you posted it, and I would enjoy your comments about how you think it went.

  • avatar
    Antone

    Yes, I believe the interview would be beneficial. But ultimately it your call.

  • avatar
    tony7914

    Go for it! Your great at what you do and I think you’ll get a fair shake.

  • avatar
    George Keller

    Why not?

    This is mainstream media and they are all slanted in one direction or another. Speak the truth but maintain an awareness of the slant and frame your statements accordingly.

  • avatar

    You guys that are apologists for propagandists like Al Jezeera are hilarious. You’re either myopic or have an agenda. Your notion of “balance” is that they present views with which you agree.

    RF, maybe it’s my own bias but I don’t recognize a lot of the commenter’s names that are cheerleading for Al Jezeera in this thread. It’d be interesting to see how many of them are long time members of the B&B and how many came here specifically to endorse AJ.

    BTW, I spent some time with the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, may God avenge his blood and may the memory of the righteous be a blessing. R’ Kahane disagreed with what was then the policy of the Israeli government to not talk with representatives of the PLO or other groups dedicated to the elimination of Israel. Reb Meir would say that he’d talk to anyone and tell them, “No, you can’t have my country.”

    If I was invited to speak on Al Jezeera, I’d be sure to wear my Ummat Isra’il Hayyah / Ma Fish Falastin shirts. Go right into the belly of the beast and speak truth to power.

  • avatar
    Phillip

    An Al-jazeera journalist was also convicted in Spain for involvment in the train terror bombing plot.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tayseer_Allouni

    http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/1111

  • avatar
    Engineer

    This is your opportunity to speak the truth – make it count.

    There simply is no way to predict how people would respond to this. You can break your head trying to think it through, and still get it completely wrong.

    It is well known that sunlight is the best disinfectant: all the more so when sunlight is in short supply…

  • avatar
    Happy_Endings

    RF, maybe it’s my own bias but I don’t recognize a lot of the commenter’s names that are cheerleading for Al Jezeera in this thread. It’d be interesting to see how many of them are long time members of the B&B and how many came here specifically to endorse AJ.

    It is your own bias, unless you don’t recognize the names of carguy, Rastus, don1967, PCH101, wsn, gslippy, Bertel Schmidt, Buickman, skor, Sajeev, superbadd75, and others.

  • avatar
    Aloysius Vampa

    Because your opinion is more valid if you comment a lot, right?

    I don’t comment very often because it’s a PITA to log in, since I have to go back to my email to get my insane password that I can’t change.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Your notion of “balance” is that they present views with which you agree.

    Er. no. But they are capable of delivering a fairly neutral interview that isn’t shrill, unlike the leading-question, grandstanding-host format that is commonplace on Fox News.

    The issue for Mr. Farago is whether the benefits of doing it (exposure) are accompanied by drawbacks. I’d say that there aren’t too many drawbacks, unless they edit him so that his reproduced verbiage does not articulate his views.

    That being said, I would be cautious not to play to any anti-US schadenfreude. It might not normally be required, but I’d be inclined when meeting with a foreign media source to make it clear that these failures are specific to these two companies, not to free enterprise or American business skills in general. Just because Rick Wagoner sucks doesn’t mean that every business in the country is a flop.

  • avatar

    Do it.

    DO IT.

  • avatar
    Schm

    I’m no appologist, but I don’t see why you shouldn’t appear on AJE. I’ve watched some of their stuff, and it’s not that bad. It’s interesting to see the perspective of the world events from the eyes of someone else, same reason why I read Spiegel.

    I’d say go for it. I wouldn’t get to complex with them. Just explain to them the facts, they probably don’t care that much about opinions. Show them that you know what your talking about, and be sure to let them know about the true story-GM’s management failures.

    The news needs to get out, and Al Jeezera isn’t as bad as some (I’m thinking of Xinhua)

  • avatar

    Al Jazeera English is aspiring to command the respect and quality of the BBC.

    Considering that the BBC has had to acknowledge its own bias regarding the Mideast, I’m not sure it’s an appropriate standard.

  • avatar
    quasimondo

    Eh, why not? I can’t think of any better way to kick off a self-congratuating world tour of telling everybody how right you were.

  • avatar
    AlexD

    Ronnie Schreiber: “Did any of them appear on Al Jezeera Arabic?”

    Have to get the last word eh? Yes, members of the Israeli government regularly interview on Arabic Al-Jazeera.

    Drives me batty, the minute any smell of the Mid-east comes up in a thread – all the trolls roll in. Meir Kahane? Gee, in the hierarchy of violent nutcases, I guess that’s on par with me sharing a ham sammich with Osama.

    Farago – most sites simply give up and don’t allow Mid-east topic threads anymore for all the maniacs they pull in off the usual hater sites. Be warned. Maybe you like the traffic, but wading through bile and bullshit is not how you’re going to build a customer base of intelligent readers.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    I don’t see how a news organization that originates from the Muslim world, where antisemitism has been institutionalized and integrated into acceptable dialogue in society, can be considered balanced in the Western world.

  • avatar

    So Robert, what’s the verdict? Yea or Nay?

  • avatar
    agenthex

    My bad, it was Al Arabiya not Al Jazeera.

    The point remains that their Arab branch actively campaigns against Isreal and should not be supported in any way, IMO.

    Both Al Arabiya and Al Jazeera are modern international news networks that actually report news instead of the general trash on US TV.

    You can readily identify the ignorant people in the thread above who apparently can’t be bothered to look at even their english content.

    There is also no difference between their english and arabic news except for amount of coverage on topics.

    Research the primary source if this is unbelievable (go check Arabiya because I only did the cross on Jazeera). Remember to report back afterward about how low-life scumbag liars in the US media managed to fool all the “dumb americans” into believing otherwise.

    This topic ironically reinforces the worst stereotypes about us abroad.


    BTW, that clip doesn’t show shit. It’s some lady who thinks she may have seen a rocket fire from somewhere below her. On par with most US news reporting. Bravo.

  • avatar

    Go forth and give the interview. According to Stratfor, Obama just gave an “interview with Saudi-owned satellite channel al-Arabiya (his first with a foreign news organization after becoming president).” If he can, so can you.

  • avatar
    Zeitgeist

    ajla:

    Yes, as long as you wear an American flag tie or a cowboy hat.

    Or a bowtie.

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