As of late the beltway insider media storm has been over the public humiliation of reporter on Teabaggers and birthers, David Weigel.
It’s a petty, moronic tale; Weigel belonged to a private listerv for fellow journalists which was maintained by Washington Post reporter Ezra Klein.
The purpose of the list was to be the smoky “reporter bar” we see in the old black and white movies, where reporters can let their hair down and shoot the shit over smokes and bourbons.
There was a code of ethics for those on the list that everything posted on the list stays within the list, keeping it a free speech zone for blowing off steam.
Well, not everything is 100% safe on the internet– someone leaked a few of the e-mails that Weigel posted onto the list complaining about the right wing extremists he had been reporting on.
The statements he made were not flattering, but they are not uncommon statements made by journalists to make off record after dealing with their everyday reporting. Not unlike when people meet up at a bar after work and bitch about the the details of their work day.
It is not clear who leaked these e-mails, but what is clear is that the e-mails were exposed by Washington DC lobby/PR firm Quinn Gillespie’s media director : Matt Dornic. All of this was done via Dornic’s cheesy blog called FishbowlDC.
It is such a crappy blog we won’t bother linking to it, but you can Google it for yourself if you wish.
The result of this moronic situation is that Weigel was forced to resign as a reporter for the Washington Post as a journalistic source of the state of the right wing.
Weigel, a socially liberal Libertarian, might have made too many enemies from the crazies he reported on and he was an obvious threat for the facts he was exposing.
Much of what we have stated so far has been printed and talked about over and over, but very little has been said about Dornic’s boss, Quinn Gillespie.
On their site, Quinn Gillespie and Associates claim to be a bi-partisan lobby and public relations firm, yet specific political clients they have worked with are not posted on the site.
What is posted on the site a list of their corporate clients, and an interesting, yet vague babble about their “results” which sound almost like a T-Bagger bullet point list: Healthcare Industry, International Corporatism, pro-Coal Industry, Taxes…
With that fact, why was Dornic not fired from Quinn Gillespie and Associates for the unethical action of posting private e-mails on a blog to cause harm and embarrassment to a reporter while that blog is also used to promote the firm?
Arguments can be made that Dornic’s shitty blog is not affiliated with the firm, but Weigel’s private statements on a listserv were not affiliated with the Washington Post either.
Fair questions we are asking:
Why did Dornic ( and possibly, Quinn Gillespie and Asscoiates) target David Weigel?
Was Dornic working “on the clock” for Quinn Gillespie and Associates when he pulled this dubious stunt?
Was this stunt done at the behest of the firm?
Most respectable public relations firms would distance themselves a sleazy move like this, but they remain silent and with Dornic still in their employment.
How far is this from the amateur media hack and dress up pimp daddy James O’Keefe breaking into federal senate offices while on Breitbart’s payroll?
And speaking of Mr. psycho Big Government, crazy Andrew Breitbart is going by the way of America’s king of porn Larry Flynt and offering $100K for anyone to give him the entire archive of the journalist listserv Weigel was exposed on so he too can continue the hackery.
Lest we digress from the point of this article, which asks the question: how much did this corporate lobbying/public relations firm have to do with a reporter losing his job for reporting on events that might have shed their own interests in a bad light?
How much of this kind of manipulation of our media by these corporate interests are we supposed to allow as a country that is supposed to value the first amendment of the Constitution?