I count myself lucky having been privileged to know Chris for several years. Lucky because, in the crazy oft-dishonest/self serving world of what counts as today’s corporate journalism, Chris maintains the integrity of the great reporters of yore, the ones who reported back in the day when we really did have a Fourth Estate.
It is precisely thanks to the net, to Chris and others like her that, from time to time, major stories make the leap from Kos or HuffPo to Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow or Ed Schultz. Time and again, the NYTimes et al have ignored important stories, only to jump on them once a blogger like Chris proves something substantive.
With this as background, it was with extreme dismay that I read Chris’s excellent and disturbing report yesterday, http://www.dailykos.com/... on how the U.S. Coast Guard had not only deliberately posed photographs of a pseudo-pristine Pass Christian beachfront but that they’d crossed the line by placing photo-shopped images of an oil-free beach on their website. Knowing Chris, I knew she had not made her accusation lightly. In fact, I have never known her to post a story she has not thoroughly researched so I was astonished, in following yesterday’s comments, to see her labeled a conspiracy theorist and worse.
I called Chris immediately whereupon she expressed her enormous frustration with the Kos community and the fact that, in living up to her agreement to protect the confidentiality of one on-site national journalist along with that of the workers who spoke with the students (I think we all know what happens to whistle-blowers, especially those who are poor and unconnected,) her own integrity was called into question.
Chris has since shared other images with me, all of which attest incontestably to the fact that things are not as they seem in these now official Coast Guard photos. She plans to post additional photos tomorrow to address and dispel the specific points that led to the skeptism of yesterday’s commenters.
Folks, what’s important here is not the stroking of individual Kossacks egos - - i.e. those who might be more invested in proving diarists wrong for their own sense of self aggrandization - - but the fact that this is a huge story.
I for one refuse to swallow the tale that, after the worst oil spill in history and one that as of August 1, has been going on for 103 days, things are peachy-keen down south. That after millions of barrels of oil gushed forth into the Gulf, three quarters of the oil has magically evaporated, swam away upon the backs of phantasmagorical whales or simply willed itself away.
Perhaps slamming those who question and ignoring obvious reason is enough for some of you to sit down to a nice dish of Creole Shrimp gently simmered in a reduction of oil and Corexit. As for me, I plan to enjoy my veggies and free-range chicken while I read whatever it is Chris writes, ever grateful that she affirms my need to question the Orwellian fantasies fed a frightened public
So Chris, stay on the trail, whether it’s with your superlative breaking stories for the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), nipping at the heels of Glen Beck and David Barton or challenging staged government photos.
I’ve known conspiracy theorists and madam, you are no conspiracist.