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PUERTO RICO: ABC Report Highly Critical of Anti-Navy Protesters (Did ABC finally get one right?)
The San Juan Star | Tuesday, March 18, 2003 | ROBERT FRIEDMAN

Posted on 03/29/2003 12:31:28 PM PST by 4Freedom

Those who protested the Navy exercises on Vieques "want bombs to stop falling from the sky, but they want money to keep falling" to Puerto Rico.

That more or less was the gist of a critical report, aired Friday night over ABC to millions of stateside viewers, of efforts to keep Roosevelt Roads Naval Station open after the Navy ends exercises on Vieques on May 1.

The report, featured on the 20/20 news show by commentator John Stossel, suggested that keeping Roosevelt Roads open after the Navy leaves Vieques was "a waste of taxpayer money."

Stossel, who usually hosts a segment entitled "Give Me a Break," which spotlights excessive federal spending, noted that Adm. Robert Natter, head of the Atlantic Fleet, said he did not need Roosevelt Roads anymore.

The 20/20 commentator noted that the base contributes $300 million a year to the local economy, and its possible closing has upset the politicians who protested the use of Vieques by the Navy.

"It's as if some of the protesters want bombs to stop falling from the sky, but they want money to keep falling," said Stossel.

U.S. Rep. Jose Serrano, D-N.Y. was quoted on the report saying the Navy wants to close the base to punish the protesters.

"[The Navy] says, 'We'll fix you. We're getting out. And we're taking everything,'" Stossel quoted Serrano as telling him.

Serrano said it was up to Congress to decide on whether the base closes, and with the presidential election coming up and everyone courting Latino votes, he predicted that the Navy will stay put.

"When the president realizes that it's getting close to 2004, and this becomes another Latino political issue again, he's gonna tell them, you don't have to go. And they won't go," Serrano was quoted as saying.

Stossel ends the segment by saying: "He [Serrano] may be right. With votes at stake, politicians may spend millions on a base the Navy doesn't even want. Give me a break!"

Many e-mails to the show's Web site opined on the matter. One from doradodown said: "I agree with Adm. Natter. It really burns me to hear the arrogance of people like Serrano who so smugly declare that politicians whoring for votes will back his sentiments. If Puerto Ricans want their independence, I say, great! Give it to them."

According to DatonaBikerBabe: "I think Congress and the president should unilaterally grant Puerto Rico independence as well - with zero foreign aid. They don't want to be American. They want to be independent, with government aid."

But hectormaria had a different take on the issue.

Noting that base closings always stir up out-cries from residents of the surrounding areas because of the economic impact, the writer said that in the case of Vieques "problems created outweighed the economic advantages, therefore they wanted the bombing practice to end."

The writer agreed with Serrano that the Navy was trying to punish all Puerto Ricans "for daring to ask them for the closing" of the Vieques target area.

"Thousands of Puerto Ricans have died protecting those rights you and the Navy so cavalierly want to deny fellow American citizens. Your report simply smacks of 'yellow journalism,'" said hectormaria.

TOPICS: Front Page News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: abc; antiamerican; antinavy; corruption; drugsmugglers; extortionists; ingrtes; marxists; panderers; puertorico; terrorists
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To: SakoL61R
". The departure of the Navy will have a very negative effect on the economy of Ceiba and Fajardo (closeby towns) along with the rest of the island to a certain extent. "

Well, you know...I hate it.

Why don't you call the folks up in Limestone, Maine, and ask them how they felt when clinton closed down Loring, AFB up there.
Or the Denver folks, when Lowry AFB was shut down.
However, Hahn Air Base, in Germany...that took out around a thousand civilians who were employed there also.

And there are many others that have closed, decimating the surrounding towns and people.

And you know what? The people in those towns were not being arrogant or bitching about anything. In fact, they all appreciated the bases and what they contributed to their respective economies.

I'm tired of all those lining up at America's teats, and then bitching when it falls out of their mouths...simply because they BIT it too hard.

I went to Puerto Rico, and was warned to stay on the grounds of the El Conquistador hotel after dark, "because the locals did not like Americans". I was also quite shocked to see every house with tall fences and gates, and bars on everyone's windows.

I say good riddance to them them...let them clean up the country and maybe tourism will replace a few of those government dollars.
61 posted on 03/29/2003 6:42:53 PM PST by FrankR
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To: FrankR
It's like the old saying, 'You don't know what you got till it's gone.'

I'll be dancing in the streets when all those U.S. Taxpayer's dollars, federal and private sector jobs come home.

62 posted on 03/29/2003 7:02:17 PM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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To: Minty
C'mon Minty, how many states bleeding the U.S. Taxpayers out of $20 to $30 billion each year, like Puerto Rico does, would your grandfather say the United States could afford to support?

I'm waiting for you to share this great wisdom with me. I can imagine all the higher math you're doing right now.

Your fingers must have been flying over those calculator keys all this time.


63 posted on 03/29/2003 7:12:31 PM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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To: Minty
Geez Minty, I didn't think it would take you all night to give me your answer based on your grandfather's wisdom.

Just make something up. That's what your buddy Willie always does.

64 posted on 03/29/2003 7:27:33 PM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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To: tiredoflurking
I have lived in the United States almost twenty years. I came here because I married a radical capitalist American. While growing up in Puerto Rico I treasured the books of Ludwig Von Mises, Hayek and the other economists of the Austrian School. I read everything about capitalism I could find. I realized with sadness how far from a constitutional republic the United States had become. When I met my husband in Texas I was delighted to meet someone who had read everything I had read. Politically I am very much an American.

Nevertheless I have missed my beautiful island almost every day I have lived in the United States. I visit it often and I love it dearly. Justice requires that the United States stop all the billions of dollars going to Puerto Rico. Unfortunately that money has made many in my island disgraceful welfare statists. It is time to cut the umbilical cord. Nothing short of that will make the Puerto Rican government assume responsibility for their actions.

The issue of Vieques is one of the most shameful episodes in our history. Shameful because the left succeded in forcing the Navy out of Puerto Rico. Men in my family served the American military with honor. And now the left has succeeded in embarassing all Puerto Ricans who appreciate the United States. I understand the loathing some Americans feel for the actions of the government of Puerto Rico.

So let us forgive the justified anger of the Americans that speak with hatred towards Puerto Rico. If someone would pick your pocket for a hundred years you would be mad too.
65 posted on 03/29/2003 7:51:19 PM PST by rector seal
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To: rector seal; tiredoflurking; Willie Green; marron; Minty; mathurine
Your post brings an interesting and valid perspective to Puerto Rico's status issue, Rector Seal.

Unlike Willie, you've actually been to the island and visit it often. You've seen and heard what goes on there first-hand. It also sounds like you are a bonafide Conservative, Capitalist and not a Liberal RINO.

In my experience, for every one person that loves Puerto Rico and wants to stay there, 5 people I talk to want to leave.

Puerto Rico has become a very dangerous place to live and work. The people that live there are just as afraid to be out after dark as the tourists. The island is extremely dangerous for those residents that can't afford to live in guarded, gated communities surrounded by their wrought iron bars, Rottweilers, German Shepperds, Dobermans, Great Danes, Bull Dogs, Pit Bulls and Giant Mastiffs. The residents of Puerto Rico voluntarily live in concentration camps. They're their own jailers.

A motorist in Puerto Rico is twice as likely to be killed by a drunk or drugged driver in a traffic accident as anywhere else in the United States. Puerto Rico's super-highways are a killing field. Over 14,000 police officers and traffic laws/speed limits still aren't enforced.

The murder rate and the HIV/AIDS & Hepatitis C infection rates are the highest in the country or nearly so.

Most of the beaches are polluted and really unsafe for swimming, although the government won't tell you that. They hide that information.

The residents of Puerto Rico fail to report a lot of crime, because they fear the police are in on it. The federal government has busted more police officers, judges, lawyers and government officials in a single sting operation in Puerto Rico than anywhere in the USA.

In my experience, the entire island's politics are Left of center. It's just that two of their parties are way-way Left.

Their so-called Republican Party led the charge to throw the Navy off Vieques and to socialize their medicine.

I bear no hatred for the residents of Puerto Rico, I'm just stating the facts and setting the record straight.

Now that our military is leaving the island, there's no reason for our government to squander $10's of billions of the U.S. Taxpayer's hard-earned dollars in Puerto Rico every year.

No reason, except to buy the votes of the stateside Puerto Rican voters. And that's not a good reason.

66 posted on 03/30/2003 2:29:37 AM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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To: Minty
I'm still waiting for that answer, Minty. Or is all the wisdom you bragged your grandfather imparted to you only good for calling other FReepers names and attacking them personally?

I'm sure he'd be real proud.

67 posted on 03/30/2003 4:56:16 AM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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To: 4Freedom
You misunderstood me. I was born and raised in Puerto Rico and met my husband while I was visiting in Texas. Most, if not all, the squalor you accurately describe in Puerto Rico is due to the United States putting three fourths of our population on welfare. If you visit any of the high crime areas in the United States you will find that these areas have a large proportion of people in welfare.

I do not know anything about your background. Did you live in Puerto Rico at any time? I feel sorry for Americans living in Puerto Rico. The shock of the contrast between life in the USA and life in Puerto Rico prevents many Americans from enjoying the natural beauty of the island and as a result they can not befriend Puerto Ricans or appreciate any virtue in any of us.

Some Americans fall in love with my island and are able to see past the squalor. They can see the tragic history of Puerto Rico; a colony of Spain and, since 1898, a colony of the United States. Americans, generous to a fault, dumped billions of dollars in Puerto Rico. I would have preferred Americans making the effort to make Puerto Ricans understand the constitutional republic the United States was. But you may have noticed that the public schools no longer teach American children about our constitutional republic. If Americans can not teach the constitution to their own children, it would be far fetched to expect them to teach it to Puerto Rican children.

I was blessed that my Puerto Rican parents took the time to teach me about the value of the American constitution. I in turn teach my nine year old homeschooled child about the glory of the American original system of government.
68 posted on 03/30/2003 12:34:32 PM PST by rector seal
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To: rector seal
I fail to see how anyone can blame the squalor in Puerto Rico on anything the United States has done.

Nobody from the USA put a gun to anybody's head and forced them onto welfare. Nobody from the USA forces anyone to abuse our various social programs. That's a choice people make for themselves.

Without the intervention of the United States, Puerto Rico would look just like the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, etc., maybe worse.

The United States is responsible for whatever good there is in Puerto Rico. The United States Taxpayers, unbeknownst to most of them, paid for it all. All tolled, it amounts to $100's of billions.

69 posted on 03/30/2003 2:05:43 PM PST by 4Freedom (America is no longer the 'Land of Opportunity', it's the 'Land of Illegal Alien Opportunists'!!!)
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