Why the Internet Matters

Back in the olden days (oh say ten or fifteen years ago) we had very few means of readily obtaining information that wasn't filtered through the media's biases before reaching us. Now the Internet has opened the floodgates.

Exhibit A: The valuable Mudville Gazette (which you should read for the real news from Iraq too) has dredged up an eye-opener on the source of tension between "Buses" Nagin and "Hamlet" Blanco. Here's the heart of the matter (from a 2003 Times Picayune news story):

In a bold and potentially risky move, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin crossed party lines Monday to endorse Republican Bobby Jindal, who is locked in a tight governor's race with Lt. Gov. Kathleen Blanco, the Democratic standard bearer in the Nov. 15 runoff. <...>In recent days, Nagin said he faced considerable pressure from the state Democratic power structure to go with Blanco, citing U.S. Sens. John Breaux and Mary Landrieu in particular.
Without naming names, Nagin said Blanco supporters attached words like "risk" and "consequences" and "repercussions" to the prospect of his backing Jindal.
"They talked about this not being in the best interests of the city of New Orleans and that they would let people know that," Nagin said.

Exhibit B: From Hugh Hewitt's producer Duane aka Radioblogger comes this transcript of an interview with Major Garrett of Fox News.

MG: Well, the Red Cross, Hugh, had pre-positioned a literal vanguard of trucks with water, food, blankets and hygiene items. They're not really big into medical response items, but those are the three biggies that we saw people at the New Orleans Superdome, and the convention center, needing most accutely. And all of us in America, I think, reasonably asked ourselves, geez. You know, I watch hurricanes all the time. And I see correspondents standing among rubble and refugees and evacuaees. But I always either see that Red Cross or Salvation Army truck nearby. Why don't I see that?
HH: And the answer is?
MG: The answer is the Louisiana Department of Homeland Security, that is the state agency responsible for that state's homeland security, told the Red Cross explicitly, you cannot come.

People who are relying on the networks and the big papers and the weekly newsmagazines (how can it be news if it's already a week old?) just aren't getting the scoop. You have to go to the Internet for that!


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