Associated Press Pushes for Statehood for Puerto Rico



Ň In Florida, Puerto Ricans want equality back home, Ň ran the AP headline on December 1, 2013.  Newspapers and other news organs around the country picked it up.   ItŐs supposed to be a news story, not an editorial or opinion piece, but the message, for all its subtlety, is very strong.  Puerto Rico should be made the 51st state.  Here is how it begins:


Puerto Rican attorney Iara Rodriguez waved campaign signs and cheered at the 2012 Democratic Convention as President Barack Obama was nominated. But the delegate's euphoria faded when she returned home and, like everyone else living in Puerto Rico, could only watch as the rest of the country voted for its commander in chiefÉ.


A loose coalition of civic leaders in Florida and on the island is seeking to leverage the state's growing Puerto Rican presence to turn this issue into something the rest of Americans can easily understand: a fight for equality and the right to vote. Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens by birth, but because the island is only a territory, its residents can vote for president only if they move to a state.

"It's a citizenship issue. It's like when women weren't able to vote, when African-Americans weren't able to vote," Rodriguez said. "One of the reasons that my husband and I moved here to Florida was to not feel like a second-class citizen."

You can believe that if you want, but in Puerto Rico she was just another Puerto Rican, who shared the culture, the language, and the traditions of virtually everyone else.  In Florida, voting rights aside, if she is culturally and linguistically representative of the average Puerto Rican, she is bound to feel like a second class citizen almost everywhere she turns, whereas that would not have been the case had she stayed home.  The article continues:

In a 2012 nonbinding referendum, just over half of voters rejected the island's territorial status for the first time. In a follow-up question, over 60 percent of those who answered said they favored statehood over partial or outright independence.

That may be true as far as it goes, but this Latino Decisions opinion piece shows us that because of the way the questions were posed, and the large number of blank ballots related to the second question, the simple conclusion that the AP wants us to reach might not be quite so simple.

Whether or not the preference for statehood on the island might have crested 50 percent for the first time, this AP statehood promotion piece comes at a particularly inopportune time for anyone trying to sell La Isla del Encanto as any sort of a great new addition to the Union.  Only a couple of months ago, the British magazine, The Economist, suggested that in Puerto Rico, the United States might have its own version of the European UnionŐs Greece on its hands:

Puerto Rico, an American territory, risks a Greek-style bust. With $70 billion of debt outstanding, the equivalent of 70% of its GDP, it is more indebted than any of AmericaŐs 50 states. (Puerto Rico is not technically a state, but its bonds are treated as if it were.) Yields on its bonds have soared as high as 10%, as investors fret it may be heading for a default.


Like Greece, Puerto Rico is a chronically uncompetitive place locked in a currency union with a richer, more productive neighbour. The islandŐs economy is also dominated by a vast, inefficient near-Athenian public sector. And, as with Greece, there are fears that a chaotic default could precipitate a far bigger crisis by driving away investors, and pushing up borrowing costs in AmericaŐs near-$4-trillion market for state and local bonds


Near the beginning of its article the AP made a passing reference to Puerto RicoŐs Ňeconomic crisis,Ó grudgingly acknowledging that it might better explain the recent wave of emigration than does the search for political equality, but in its conclusion it laid even the economic mess, in so many words, at the feet of political status:


[San Juan attorney and Obama campaign adviser Andres] Lopez is among a number of statehood advocates who believe the island's current economic crisis cannot be resolved until Puerto Rico's status is.


So far, all 37 states that have asked to join the union have been accepted. Hawaii earned statehood just two years before Obama was born in Honolulu. The president has said he favors statehood, if a clear majority on the island support it.

"Every indication is that's where we'll end up," Lopez said. "But who's going to claim the political credit for doing it?"


Thus does the Associated Press transport us into the dream world of the Puerto Rico statehood enthusiast.  The island has managed to become an economic basket case while its residents donŐt pay federal taxes and receive most of the same federal benefits that mainlanders do, but giving up its remaining tax advantage will somehow make things better.  Similar thinking led a pro-statehood governor in 1996 to give up the corporate tax benefit that had brought the U.S. manufacturing firms to the island, and their predictable exodus is now a major cause of the current crisis.


So whatŐs behind this widely disseminated AP article?  Why arenŐt we hearing the arguments presented by the people who elected the current anti-statehood governor of Puerto Rico?   Even more important, why doesnŐt the American press ever present the Puerto Rico political status issue to the American people in terms of what might be good for them?  This is a question I explored with a couple of articles some fifteen years ago.  The shorter of the two, updated and with fresh links, follows:


CIA Pushes P.R. Statehood


         Today's Washington Times provides powerful new support to my thesis, heavily documented in my new article on my web site, "CIA Plots Puerto Rico Statehood," that the globalists who are pulling the strings of the CIA, as well as that of our overall political leadership, are scheming to slip statehood for Puerto Rico in on the residents of the 50 states before they can wise up to what is going on.


         To see the hand of the CIA in America's press look for something that the newspapers are virtually unanimously for, across the political spectrum, but the American people are heavily against. Three good examples come readily to mind, the invasion of Iraq, the NAFTA, and the findings of the Warren Commission. I was challenged on this by a Puerto Rican statehood zealot on the soc.culture.puerto-rico news group with respect to the current P.R. statehood legislation (disguised as P.R. "self-determination") that passed the House by one vote and is now in the Senate. That legislation would grease the skids to statehood and to the extent that our news media have not blacked out news of what is going on, they have virtually unanimously supported it. There have probably been more editorials around the country FOR it, than there have been news items ABOUT it. And if one were to compare the positive editorials with the truly informative news articles or the negative editorials, it's a complete wipeout. What in the world, the detached observer must wonder, is going on?


         The zealot offered the counter-example of The Washington Times right in our nation's capital, which he said was opposed to the legislation.


         "Well they should be," I responded, "if they are to be the true conservative newspaper that they claim to be," and I asked for evidence that The Times had weighed in editorially against it. The zealot could not produce any such evidence, but he said their articles about the legislation had had a negative tone. The fact is that The Times has had virtually no articles, and I have heretofore detected no tone. Now I have. Today's (July 31, 1998) front-page article, "Governor promotes Puerto Rico as the 51st state" can only be described as strongly pro-statehood. It also has a statement in favor of the current sneaky legislation by Republican Senator Robert F. Bennett of Utah. If memory serves, Sen. Bennett has a "prior" affiliation with one of our many clandestine organizations, quite possibly the CIA.*


         Please read and take to heart "CIA Plots Puerto Rico Statehood." Here is what I think is afoot:


         The Grand Design


          What are our rulers up to?

          What is their ultimate goal,

          That they'd freely get rid of our melting pot

          And give us a salad bowl?


          They don't want us strong and united,

          The land of the brave and the free;

          They want us in thrall to our global masters,

          A polyglot peasantry.



          Mexico North


          Here is the plan linguistic:

          A modern-day Tower of Babel.

          It goes with the plan economic:

          Elite using downtrodden rabble.


*He owned a Washington, DC, public relations firm that employed notorious CIA man E. Howard Hunt, among other things.


David Martin

December 11, 2013





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