Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Award for Best Orchestration Goes to .....

Andy Driscoll of KFAI is a veteran broadcaster, public affairs specialist, award-
winning documentarian, and investigative journalist. (If you don't believe me,
just read his bio.) I think he's worthy of another award for this direct, first-hand
evidence of the orchestration and media manipulation associated with the
Obama health care plan protest rallies.

I got a call today from Representative McCollum's office in St. Paul.
Tomorrow the so-called tea party guys are supposed to show up at
11 AM tomorrow. And they're trying to get the media to come in and
put these guys on the hot seat.

That's a blockbuster. Government officials arranging for journalists to show up at rallies
to put citizens "on the hot seat" for exercising their First Amendment rights. Is
that legal for Congress people and their staffs to do?

Regardless, I can only imagine the convulsions of rage this would inspire among
local Demcrats (in and out of the media) if Michele Bachmann tried something like
this. She was mocked, scorned, and nearly run out office by these same people
for her far less inflammatory suggestion that perhaps the media should investigate
her fellow members of Congress.

Never fear, being an award-winning member of the media, I assume Mr. Driscoll
laughed at the notion that he would even consider obeying a government official's
request to participate in a coordinated effort to investigate her political opponents.

Well, there was some laughter involved. Unfortunately, it was laughing along with
these governnment officials instead of at their highly inappropriate suggestion.
Andy Driscoll, from the comment section of a MinnPost article by Doug Grow
about this rally:

I was present for this melee, and the growing hysteria that consumes
the worst of the teabaggers also set the mob in motion and led to an amazing
string of vitriolic anti-government claims of fascist takeover of our lives.

It was difficult not to laugh out loud at the outlandish claims-cum-
slogans that came rolling out of the angriest of them. Heath care was the front
issue for a much deeper set of complaints about "government takeover of our
lives." This betrayed a set of platitudes obviously spouted by conservative talk
radio and cable news. All attempts to extract reason from individual conversation
inevitably led to an insistence, among other thing, that not everyone in this
country deserves access to health care.

Doug Grow's outstanding coverage above barely touches the depth of disgust
and disingenuousness of this crowd's mental set.

Nice job, Doug. Enjoyed laughing together.

If an actual riot didn't break out at this rally, at least the media had their own
laugh riot, at the protestors' expense.

There is no mention of whether Doug Grow was called by Rep. McCollum's office
and tipped off to attend and put the protestors "on the hot seat." But his
reporting included this exchange (excerpts):

After the meeting, I approached an older woman who had made strong
statements in opposition to "government-run programs." (....)

"Could I have your name, please?" I asked.

"Who are you?" she said.

I re-introduced myself as a reporter from MinnPost.

"I'm not going to give you my name,'' she said. "It may end up on an
enemies list."

By design or not, hot seat applied Twin Cities media. Mission accomplished.

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