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When Will MSM Review MSM’s Role in the Disaster?

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From yesterday’s interview with NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen (complete transcript at Radioblogger):

First, did the media do its job in warning people to get the hell out of there?

JR: Well, yeah, except that a lot of people felt that they received false warnings before. It’s not really failing to warn.

HH: Well, I don’t know. What about the semiotics of standing in the rain on the Gulf Coast, and then moving your car back a few yards as the waters get bigger. What’s the message that the mainstream media really sent to the people of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast ten days ago, Jay Rosen?

JR: Well, I would have to look at it, actually. You know? I really…I’d have to look at it, knowing what happened, because what they’re doing is they’re searching for what the story is going to turn out to be, right?

HH: Yeah.

JR: And they keep shifting their notion of what the story is going to turn out to be, because it’s a moving event.

HH: Again, I’ve got a proposition for you, because they did not do their homework, because they did not understand the levees were the threat, they ended up killing hundreds of Americans. I’m not going to say thousands, because I don’t know the number. But I know hundreds are dead, that they did not communicate the severity of this storm. Your reaction to that proposition?

JR: No, I don’t think that’s fair. No. I don’t think you can say that they weren’t warning people to get out. I do think you can say that the radio stations of New Orleans, which didn’t even bother to broadcast, and were in fact, the only medium that could reach the people trapped there, completely failed in their responsibility. No question about it.

HH: Is it responsible to do the testosterone dance on the beach, though?

JR: You mean to show that you can withstand the storm, and that kind of thing?

HH: Yeah.

JR: Oh, I think that’s hilarious. It’s one of the most discrediting things that journalists do. It’s like asking us not to take them seriously.

Jay’s reaction –that the media couldn’t have contributed to the decision of many people to try and ride out the storm– doesn’t match with common sense. Don’t expect the anti-Bush MSM to ask any hard questions of themselves, but I’d love to see if some relative of the dead has a chance to confront Anderson Cooper or the legion of posers with microphones on their contribution to the wreckage all around.

From Santa Fe, an account of an EMT from inside the Superdome. Yesterday’s presser with the Louisiana National Guard left many questions unanswered, though the men fielding the questions are obviously good hearted guys with one key message: Everything was secondary to saving lives, including the discomfort of the evacuees inside the Superdome and Convention Center.

What didn’t get answered is why so few National Guardsmen were on duty in both places (4,000 guradsmen were on duty when the storm, and another 1,700 mobilizing to the north)? I haven’t been able to find what the police presence is at the Superdome for an ordinary event, but if Major Garrett’s number for the total of troops in the Dome –400– is correct, as well as the numbver of 30,000 evacuees, the planning department of the Guard and New Orleans police have many more questions to answer.

The Washington Post’s Terry Neal continues to amuse. Here’s his latest ringing conclusion:

Polls show that the public is already increasingly weary of the president’s character, largely because of the dubious claims he made in the march to war in Iraq and probably because of his failure to hold anyone accountable for the mistake made in selling the war as well as fighting it. But they won’t soon forget the images coming out of New Orleans and elsewhere on the Gulf Coast.

I’d love to see these “polls” –note the plural Nealused. Seems that Terry still doesn’t have an editor who asks him even basic questions about substantiation. That’s fine for an opinion journalist –but Neal is allegedly a “reporter,” in fact he’s the “ Chief Political Correspondent.” It appears that he reports only his own feelings, and corresponds chiefly with

Neal has yet to use the name “Blanco” in a column. And two days after the storm hit, the oh-so-concenred Neal was writing about why the Bush girls hadn’t volunteered for the Iraq War.

But the MSM isn’t liberal. Or barking moonbat lefty. Not at all.


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