Affidavit on smear campaign against Corps critics:
Why I spoke out~Jon Donley
~"During my tenure as founding editor-in-chief of the New Orleans-based sites affiliated with The Times-Picayune, my duties included management and oversight of an aggressive program of community engagement features. As detailed in the affidavit, I began observing a group of about 20 user aliases deriding any story or user comment questioning the Corps’ performance in protecting New Orleans from flooding.
These comments tracked Corps talking points and media statements, often almost verbatim.
~I learned in mid-2008 that the IP address associated with these postings belonged to the New Orleans office of the Corps of Engineers. At that point I watched the postings more closely.
The Corps later admitted that posts were being made from within its network, but described them as an isolated event. In the latest response, Corps representatives said that any postings were made by people on breaks, as allowed by Corps policy.
This clearly was not the case.
But what crystallized the issue for me was the news about the multimillion-dollar public relations campaign, whose launch tracked the beginning of the attacks on critics of the Corps on NOLA.com. The public relations firm – Outreach Process Partners (OPP) — bragged on its web site that it had influenced the coverage of the Corps by major news organizations. I know that the use of covert postings is a recognized, if somewhat crude, tactic by many public relations campaigns. Red flags were going off. (emphasis all Editilla!:)
~TP/Nola.com responds to WWL (but not yet Donley), with an Absolute Fluff PR'n Piece of Corps BoIntelPro Spin'Filtration, replete with misstatements of Corps Policy regarding computer use and attempts to marginalize founding editor Donley as a Temp Laborer, to quote: "An Internet consultant who had worked for nola.com". Excuse me?
The TP/Nola.com now does not address the clear and present felony violations of the Federal Code and the Hatch Act, both of which govern the fraudulent use of Tax-funded Federal Property, particularly computers. The TP/Nola.com allowed the Corps PO Ken "Doll" Holder to again misstate policy and contradict the public statements of his boss, as posted in yesterday's Ladda.
Y'all go check out the comments section now, since Nola.com is basically, though erroneously, giving permission for every Troll down on Leake Street to come and pump more shit in our veins.
Who'z Paying the Piper Here???
We the People want to know how much of this nefarious gansta skulduggery is directly executed by the Corps own tax-financed
$5,000,000 Public Relations / Media Manipulator:
Outreach Process Partners (OPP).
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