Oliver Stone watch #3

As some of you will know, there’s a charming little show on State TV called "La Hojilla." Technically a political talk show, it’s mostly catnip for the most radical chavista elements and ideas, with a heavy side-line in trashing the opposition. They have never featured an opposition guest or an opposition idea, other than to mock it.

There is nothing in US media quite like this. Glenn Beck, Keith Olbermann – these guys are Edward R. Murrow next to La Hojilla host Mario Silva.

It’s no wonder Hugo Chávez considers it compulsory viewing. Not only does his government pay the bills, he frequently phones in and rambles on it.

Oliver Stone’s notion of a brave chavista movement deeply committed to transcendent values of journalistic integrity under constant attack from a ruthless palangrista propaganda machine up north crumbles to dust within five minutes’ of turning La Hojilla on.

Last Friday, the show’s only guest was Jorge Amorín, chavista candidate for the AN for the Petare circuit in greater Caracas. Amorín used his air time almost exclusively to villify his opponent in the election, and trash the opposition mayor of his district.

Did the opposition get similar air time on this or any other channel? Do pigs fly?

You can watch the whole thing here, Mr. Stone. And while you’re at it, please give them some tips on their awful production values.

The script is the same, day in and day out. State TV promotes chavista candidates 24/7, while opposition candidates struggle to get their message across. Why, that very same day, another State TV show, Dando y Dando, had chavista AN candidate Aristóbulo Istúriz as a guest. No opposition point of view was presented.

The plot is not just limited to State TV. Even the State-owned news agency AVN acts as a war room that responds to opposition proposals and trashes them: case in point, here.

Fair and balanced, wouldn’t you agree?