Friday, October 26, 2007

Wag The FEMA

Well, it appears that life - in this case, your government - is imitating the movies.

FEMA Stages Press Conference: Staff Pose As Journalists And Ask ‘Softball’ Questions

As Al Karmen, in the Washington Post reports;

"And so I think what you're really seeing here is the benefit of experience, the benefit of good leadership and the benefit of good partnership," Johnson said, "none of which were present in Katrina." (Wasn't Michael Chertoff DHS chief then?) Very smooth, very professional. But something didn't seem right. The reporters were lobbing too many softballs. No one asked about trailers with formaldehyde for those made homeless by the fires. And the media seemed to be giving Johnson all day to wax on and on about FEMA's greatness.

Of course, that could be because the questions were asked by FEMA staffers playing reporters. We're told the questions were asked by Cindy Taylor, FEMA's deputy director of external affairs, and by "Mike" Widomski, the deputy director of public affairs. Director of External Affairs John "Pat" Philbin asked a question, and another came, we understand, from someone who sounds like press aide Ali Kirin.

Why isn't this totally shocking?

After all, we've had a unitary, imperial presidency in which they have been their own Congress (See Signing Statements), been their own Court (See Making Their Own Laws), been their own jailers (See CIA Black Sites and Extraordinary Rendition).

So, it goes that this would seep down into the branches of their inept administration.

Perhaps the bigger shock is why this hasn't happened sooner.

Well, technically, it did - See Jeff Gannon.

What may be sadder in all of this, is that, it wasn't far off the track of what the lapdog, lame, Kool-Aid-drinking Mainstream Media has been like for most of this regime.

After all, they carried it, live on television and nobody noticed anything unusual.

And the most ironic thing about it, forget about life-saving supplies, FEMA couldn't even deliver journalists to a press conference.

Time once again, to cue up Que Sera Sera...

Bonus "Real" Links

The Carpetbagger Report: FEMA holds a press conference with itself

Larisa Alexandrovna: FEMA staffers impersonate reporters...

Creature/The Reaction: Managing the message

Christy Hardin Smith/FireDogLake: Bizarre Moments In Bushworld


Jeff Gannon said...

Old Media Ablaze Over Staged FEMA Presser

Liberal activists and the Old Media are aghast and outraged over a press conference conducted last Tuesday by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Reporters were only able to listen to a department spokesman respond to questions about relief efforts for the California wildfires posed by other members of the FEMA staff. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff appropriately chastised the sham press conference and promised an investigation and disciplinary action and the White House expressed its displeasure with the incident.

Surely no one at FEMA believed that the staged event would not immediately be discovered and criticized. What could the motivation have been for such a stunt? Perhaps FEMA wanted an opportunity to present its version of events before the Old Media created its own reality about the fires and the actions of the agency. News consumers had already listened to reporters making comparisons to the federal response to Hurricane Katrina and attempting to find fault with the handling of relief efforts. California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger had to take ABC’s Claire Shipman by the hand to convince her that everything possible was being done and that she should stop trying to invent mistakes and shortcomings. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and other environuts demagogued the tragedy as evidence of the effect of global warming, while California Democrats like Sen. Barbara Boxer and Lt. Governor John Garamendi incorrectly claimed that relief efforts were impeded by having troops and equipment in Iraq.

One of the lessons learned in the wake of Katrina is how the unaccountable Old Media are able to create a false impression that their ideological soul mates in the Democratic Party use for political advantage. In my book, “The Great Media War: A Battlefield Report”, I detail the flawed coverage of one of the greatest natural disasters in American history – a record that has yet to be corrected.

When I learned of the fake news conference, I expected that the characterization of Jeff Gannon as a “phony reporter” would be revived. Liberal media activist Keith Olbermann noted it on his nightly train wreck of a talk show and the lefties of the blogosphere dutifully repeated it ad nauseum. This is a classic case of how a lie becomes reality, since the record proves otherwise. I was as real as a reporter gets, writing over 500 articles as a White House correspondent, a job that Secret Service records indicate I actually showed up for more than 200 times over the course of two years. The veracity of my work as a reporter has never been successfully challenged.

Further, in 2006 – a year after my supposed exposure as a “phony reporter” - my peers accepted me into the National Press Club, the most prestigious association of professional journalists in the world. My book about the media will be featured at the National Press Club’s 30th annual book fair on November 1. Not bad for a “fake, fraud and phony.”

Anonymous said...

He still believes his own lies. Unbelievable!