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Morning Report 12/7/05Lost Hermanos

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Yo, Mamá! The Pentagon’s recruiting target: those ‘right-brained’ Hispanics

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Harkavy

Talk all you want about how the Pentagon, short of fresh bodies for the Bush regime’s imperial misadventures, is probably going to be allowed to recruit on college campuses.

That’s all the big news for those hanging around the U.S. Supreme Court these days.

And let’s pause for a second to salute the holiday bonuses coming to New York’s finest — not the NYPD but our Wall Street denizens, who are celebrating what looks like their third or fourth most profitable year ever, according to Daniel Dunaief‘s story in yesterday’s Daily News. I hope they don’t run out of Lamborghinis before I start shopping.

But in the rest of America, millions of much poorer people, many of them Hispanic, who have few other options are square in the sights of military recruiters, who are spending millions of dollars of taxpayer money to gather information on how to target them.

This past February, on beautiful Coronado Island in San Diego, the Pentagon’s recruiter brains — JAMRS (Joint Advertising Market Research & Studies) — gathered for their annual direct-marketing conference, where they heard that America’s rapidly growing Hispanic population is “wired” differently, how Hispanics tend to be “emotional” and “right-brained.”

As the excerpts from New York marketing consultant Michael Saray‘s “Marketing to Hispanics” presentation at the conference indicate, left-brained people are supposedly “intellectual, sequential, analytical, logical, and accuracy-driven.” Hispanics, on the other hand, are supposedly “emotional, intuitive, creative, Big Picture, and visionary.”

Even the Spanish language “has not favored intellect over emotion,” according to Saray’s presentation to the Pentagon recruiting brass.

Well, that does it: I’m through reading Borges.

To get Hispanics to enlist, according to Saray, you’ve got to get Mamá to give her blessing. So watch out, all you moms out there.

As I’ve said many times before: Esta mierda no se puede inventar.

Saray tells me that he was “the main person on Hispanics” at the conference. Among his findings, he says: “The majority of Hispanics are right-brained, more creative” and “love to do things in groups.”

Saray, who is not himself Hispanic, emphasizes that this is a “premise, a theory — it’s not scientific, just an opinion,” but that among the Hispanics at the conference, “very few people disagreed.”

Saray adds, “I know Hispanics with MBAs who are really good at math. And I have plenty of Hispanic friends who have strong left brains.”

His lengthy “Marketing to Hispanics” slide show used to be available on the JAMRS site; excerpts are in the illustration above, along with a U.S. Army recruiting postcard.

The JAMRS site is full of other info, including the minutes of a November 2002 meeting of the Pentagon’s top advertising brass — the Joint Marketing and Advertising Committee — that reveals them to be fully aware of just how hard hit, overall, Hispanics are by economic downturns:

    The current economic downturn has had a far more dramatic impact on the US Hispanic population, given their disproportionate representation in blue-collar occupations.

But Hispanics on a college campus — that’s the best of all possible worlds for recruiters armed with specifics on how to lure Latinos. No wonder the military is focusing on sites such as Cal State University-Northridge, which has a high proportion of Hispanic and black students. Today’s news out of the Supreme Court has to be good for the Pentagon’s attempts to enlist more Hispanics. Reporter Cynthia Ramos noted last month in the school’s paper, the Daily Sundial:

    A military recruiting plan that targets Latinos on college campuses like CSUN is still questioned by some campus leaders more than two years after the Army made its latest high-profile appearance on campus.

    The purpose of the Hispanic Access Initiative is to produce more Latino leaders in the military so it could reflect the soaring Latino population in the United States, said Capt. Brian Johns of the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps program at CSUN.

Ramos quotes Johns as adding:

    “We don’t target anyone. I’m not a recruiter. We will wait for people to approach us.”

Yeah, right. The military doesn’t target anyone. Various sources indicate that the Pentagon spends up to $20 million a year just on marketing to Hispanics.

And recruiters know where else to go to find poor kids who have few options other than the military with which to better their economic situation. The Denver Post recently noted that recruiters are targeting rural areas because city slickers just aren’t interested. The paper’s Jim Hughes wrote:

    Rural communities in Colorado and across the United States are producing more than their share of new American military recruits, according to a ZIP code analysis of Defense Department recruitment records from 2004.

    These areas, particularly in the South and West, always have been fertile ground for military recruiters, experts say.

    But as one indicator of urban participation — African-American enlistment rates — declines across the country, the armed forces are receiving more enlistees from rural areas, according to military sociologists who study recruiting.

One prime spot is the South, where segregation is thriving once again and which also happens to be the core area of the redneck GOP wing that currently controls Congress. The State of the South 2004 report noted:

    The region’s young population is increasingly Latino and African American. These population groups will comprise an increasing percentage of the South’s future workforce as well as its communities. Meanwhile, Southern public schools are becoming resegregated, reducing opportunities for all children to learn to live and work together.

    Many low-income and minority youth attend isolated, resource-poor schools, where they cannot get the education they need. Our schools continue to be afflicted by separateness and inequality, and our students as well as our region continue to suffer from it.

Up here in the North, on the other hand, our Wall Streeters are obviously left-brained: They can do the math. You know, the left-brainers are the ones who are supposedly logical, rational, and intellectual. Judging by the Bush regime’s performance, I’d say hare-brained and hair-triggered are more like it.

George W. Bush‘s Wall Street pals certainly aren’t suffering from the regime’s intemperate, emotional, hot-blooded behavior in, say, Iraq. Last year’s Wall Street bonuses were shocking, as I wrote December 28. This year’s will be even better.

Wall Street bonuses are expected to rise, on average, about 10 percent this year, reports the Daily News‘s Dunaief. He adds:

    Goldman Sachs execs, many of whom already collected a windfall from the 25% gain in stock price, are expected to do particularly well, after the firm’s profits surged. The bank set aside $9.2 billion in pay for the first nine months of the year. Through September, Goldman paid its 22,000 employees an average of $418,000, though that is skewed by the fact that some stars make mega bucks, while many others take home a more modest pay, analysts said.

    A hefty chunk of that is earmarked for bonuses, analysts said.

    In recent years, those bonuses have accounted for about 40% of the average salary earned on Wall Street and for about 7.5% of all wages paid in the city, according to research from state controller Alan Hevesi‘s office.

Well, merry Xmas to those Wall Streeters. More later on the Pentagon’s targeting of Hispanics — and of black kids, whose unemployment rate in New York City is said to hover around 50 percent.