The Big Disconnect

Bill Moyers was on the radio the other night giving a speech. He made about a zillion great points, but one that really stuck with me was this: the media thinks that reporting on what happened that day is journalism (he even quoted Jim Lehrer saying this). So when Bush stands in front of the White House and announces that everything is fine, that is what 99 % of press report. On the other hand, real journalism would mean reporting on how Bush said everything is fine, when in fact things are a disaster.

For the first time in recent memory, here is some journalism from CNN. Titled “The Big Disconnect” it contrasts what federal officials are annoucing with what everyone else sees.

Here’s a sample:

Conditions in the Convention Center

FEMA chief Brown: We learned about that (Thursday), so I have directed that we have all available resources to get that convention center to make sure that they have the food and water and medical care that they need. (See video of CNN asking why FEMA is clueless about conditions — 2:11)

Mayor Nagin: The convention center is unsanitary and unsafe, and we are running out of supplies for the 15,000 to 20,000 people. (Hear Nagin’s angry demand for soldiers. 1:04)

CNN Producer Kim Segal: It was chaos. There was nobody there, nobody in charge. And there was nobody giving even water. The children, you should see them, they’re all just in tears. There are sick people. We saw… people who are dying in front of you.

Evacuee Raymond Cooper: Sir, you’ve got about 3,000 people here in this — in the Convention Center right now. They’re hungry. Don’t have any food. We were told two-and-a-half days ago to make our way to the Superdome or the Convention Center by our mayor. And which when we got here, was no one to tell us what to do, no one to direct us, no authority figure.

2 thoughts on “The Big Disconnect”

  1. Ted Koppel (I know, I’m surprised too) went after the FEMA chief, Brown, on Nightline, last night and totally sandbagged him with quotes from the local FEMA offices showing how out-of-touch the Feds are with what is really going on.

    But if you really want to see out-of-touch with reality in action – Bush in Mobile, AL, today,

    “The good news is — and it’s hard for some to see it now — that out of this chaos is going to come a fantastic Gulf Coast, like it was before. Out of the rubbles of Trent Lott’s house — he’s lost his entire house — there’s going to be a fantastic house. And I’m looking forward to sitting on the porch. (Laughter.)”

  2. Jesus Christ, our Pres is seriously out of touch. The good news is, sure, Trent Lott can afford a brand new, better house. He was rich to begin with, and still has a job. I’m sure all those people stuck in the squalid conditions at New Orleans hospitals with no water or food while doctors manually make up for respirators with no power are relieved as all get out that Trent Lott’s new house will be better than the last one.

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