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Mary Anastasia O’Grady: Making enemies wherever she goes

25 November 2009

The Wall Street Journal’s Mary Anastasia O’Grady is probably the only writer I’ll miss if the Journal, as owner Rupert Murdoch threatens, becomes unavailable on the internet without a subscription. Not that I think O’Grady is a good analyst… exactly the opposite. She’s even a better barometer of what Latin Americans are NOT going to do than the Miami Herald’s Andres Oppenheimer.   Oppenheimer accepts as gospel whatever the Latin American right-wing says, but sometimes the rightist win elections.  O’Grady makes shit up.

Her pernicious fictions about Honduras were accepted by the Obama Administration (or, at least, they were by South Carolina Senator Jim De Mint, and the Administration, for domestic policy reasons, was willing to sacrifice Honduran democracy in exchange for a rather unimportant vote on confirming state department appointees) but no one is buying her tales lately.

A recent O’Grady “analysis” of the upcoming Bolivian elections is described by El Gaviero as a

… factually challenged screed [which] fails on many levels, one being her deification of disgraced former Bolivian president Gonzalo “Goni the Gringo” Sánchez de Lozada (presently wanted in Bolivia for ordering the massacre of his countrymen and a defendant in the U.S. for said crimes against humanity and extrajudicial killings).

Read his post.   The humiliating deconstruction of O’Grady’s thesis  by twenty United States, French and Bolivian academics is a masterpiece of invective.

You might expect ol’ hippies (er, young hippies) out in the jungle like Gav to excoriate capitalist tools (in the bad sense) like O’Grady — but good churchgoing mid-western Lutherans (aka “God’s Frozen People”) are supposed to be slow to anger… even by those circumnavigations about the periphery of veracity.

Tim’s El Salvador Blog is royally frosted by an 8 November 2009 O’Grady piece in which she claims that a split among congressional representatives of El Salvador’s far-right Arena party (the issue being investigation of fraud in an agricultural subsidy program) somehow is the work of Hugo Chavez.

You might have thought that this fear-mongering about El Salvador becoming a puppet state of Venezuela would have ended with the shut down of ARENA’s propaganda machine after the March elections, but not so for O’Grady. She consciously decides not to mention [Salvadorian President Mauricio] Funes 84% approval rating, the decidedly moderate measures taken by the government in the past 5 months, and the repeated statements by the FMLN leadership that they support Funes and have no difference in opinion with him. Sometimes when I see someone spouting such nonsense, I can’t resist responding.

When O’Grady writes about the Catholic Church in Honduras and the Church’s supposed support of the coup regime, there’s a tag team, made up of Tegacigulpa based Rhoades scholar and researcher, Daniel Altshueler, and Diocese of Copan assistant director of Caritas and lay brother “Hermano Juancito” to try bringing Ms. O’Grady’s musings back in line with the eighth and ninth commandments (not to mention journalistic ethics).

I’m not going to embarrass myself by trying to quote Virgil in the original (not that I’m a Latin scholar in any way, though I’ve picked up a few phrases here and there), but the Roman poet immortalized a lousy writer of his day as one  “tolerated neither by the gods, nor by men or nor by book sellers”.   Mary Anastasia O’Grady will be remembered — if at all — in Latin AMERICAN letters as one “tolerated neither by men of God, nor by scholars, nor by book-sellers.” And that’s giving her more credit than she’s worth.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. 25 November 2009 9:18 am

    I’m actually from the Midwest, too. I’ve even stolen wine from the local Lutheran church when I was kid. I think going to the occasional Quaker meeting with my mom way back then informed me much more than any Lutheran theology. (Although watching Garrison Keillor’s PHC with my pops was probably the equivalent of going to Lutheran megachurch, no?)

  2. 25 November 2009 10:00 am

    Hanging with Quakers? That makes you a hippie by default 🙂

  3. armen kouyoumdjian permalink
    25 November 2009 12:50 pm

    to call her “antipàtica” is not enough..insufferable is closer but still can such people be allowed to roam the streets, let alone write for publication, is beyond me.

  4. Timone permalink
    1 March 2010 7:54 am

    Citing a group of academics as proof for right-wing conspiracy theories only proves the author’s ultra leftwing views. Viva la socialistas! Aye Comrad?

  5. Frank permalink
    17 July 2012 10:27 pm

    I’m from El Salvador and I think that was she writes is spot on, Funes 84% approval rating haha were do you this nonsense? The president is a fool, the ratings are done by the same person that rates tony saca the ex president another corrupt idiot, that as salvadoreans don’t need. May you should get your facts right before you write nonsenses also!

  6. Gianpaolo Boccato permalink
    24 June 2014 12:50 am

    Mary Anastasia O’Grady’s opinion article in the WSJ June 23 2014 A Modest Proposal for Migrant Children used Language towards Migrant Children that many would find offensive.


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