Nov 21, 2008 Letters
I am responding to Anthony Vieira’s letter of November 14 (“Have we learnt anything from the US experience?”) in which he incorrectly stated, “nothing about the U.S election was close,” to prove that Vishnu Bisram was wrong in his assessment that the swing states would be closer than what the polls concluded.
Vieira is wrong in his conclusions about the American elections. For example, the actual results in Indiana, Missouri and North Carolina showed the two candidates separated by less than 1%. In Virginia, it was 3%, Florida 2%, Ohio 4%, etc. Those are close numbers, Mr. Vieira, although in your definition they are not. I quoted polls showing bigger margins in those states and said they would be wrong. So am I not right when I penned the contests would be closer?
Also, I said McCain would get 46% and he did get 46%. Am I not right? I wrote there would be split votes in which Obama would get less votes than some of his Democratic candidates in Senate contests. The results showed Obama got less than Senate candidates in several states. Am I not right?
In the final commentary I did, I showed Obama getting 349 EVs. He actually got 364 because I was off in NC (15 EVs) which Obama won by a fraction of a percent. Am I not right there also? Let me point out that my assessment was based on the polls, not on a hunch. Vieira pens that he does not view Vishnu Bisram as anymore “impartial as Prem Misir and John Da Silva” (presumably in their defence of the Government. Without commenting on the merits of his feeling, how impartial is Vieira?
Examine what he pens about my assessment of the U.S election against what was the fact, and one can see how impartial Vieira is.
And then let us assess his TV station. How impartial is it in its reporting and commentaries? How fair is the station in permitting alternative viewpoints or access to the different racial and religious groupings in Guyana?
Does the station allow members from parties other than the PNC to air their views? Isn’t Mr. Vieira the one who had launched attacks against others? Was he impartial by allowing rebuttals? I can point to hundreds of articles I penned in which I was critical of the PPP. They were balanced and professionally done. Vieira forgets that I have taken quite some flak from the PPP and the state media, including from Misir and Da Silva. So much for impartiality from a media owner! I already addressed aspects of his letter in SN (November 17). I urge Vieira to reconsider his views about me, to be objective, fair, and honest in his analysis, and to be impartial in his managing of TV programmes on his station. Let me conclude by saying that, like Vieira, I hope voters learn from the American experience. But, based on his comments, it does not appear that Vieira learned anything.
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