Rudy Giuliani: No Hero

The following articles were linked to on the Digital Media Tree blog and I want to put them up here as well. For many of us who've lived in the New York metro area for years it was painful to watch the media dub Rudy Giuliani a "hero" after 9/11, just because he had some poise in front of the camera while Bush was flying further and further west. That's what he did--the man lived for the camera, he was always injecting himself into news stories as mayor. He was also a bully and race-baiter and exploited the 9/11 tragedy for great personal gain after leaving office. His public mistreatment of his family members is disgusting. In short, he is not a hero, just someone who looks confident on TV. The public record reflects all this but it is not balanced: Google's searches of blogs can help restore that balance as the media continues to gloss the Rudester. If you agree with me that President Giuliani would be a mistake, you might consider putting one of these articles in a hyperlink around his name when mentioning him online. The top 10 Google searches should include one or more of these articles and not the usual puffery for this less-than-savory candidate.

Here are some elements of a counternarrative:

1. Rudy Giuliani was kicked off the Iraq Study Group because he never showed up for meetings. (He was too busy making lucrative speeches bragging about his "bravery" on 9/11.)

2. Rudy Giuliani was the only candidate not invited to speak to the firefighters' presidential forum. The firefighters are angry because Giuliani's administration provided them with defective radios, which killed many of their comrades on 9/11, and also scooped up the remains of the fallen firefighters and hauled them off to the dump along with the too-hastily-disposed-of WTC debris. A Firefighters Union video titled "Rudy Giuliani: Urban Legend" mentions Giuliani's foolishness in locating his mayoral "Command Center" in WTC 7. That building was destroyed on 9/11/01, forcing the mayor to operate out in the street (while running away from the danger).

3. Rolling Stone correspondent and former New York Press writer Matt Taibbi considers Giuliani "worse than Bush."

4. Lastly, here is a review of Wayne Barrett's & Dan Collins' book on the Giuliani myth, Grand Illusion: The Untold Story of Rudy Giuliani and 9/11.

random headline gripe

Noticed an AP headline "Student Hiker Dies from Fall in Chile." Very sad. A Chilean student? No, to be newsworthy it would have to be an American death. Love the way the headline writer knows that detail can just be left out. Checked Google News and learned that the hiker was from Seattle, according to other, more responsible headlines. Even the AP's is now revised, in some publications, such as Forbes online, to be less Yankeecentric.