Thursday, March 3, 2011

This just in from Waldo. Here's the first ATF internal spin-doctor memo on the Project Gunwalker Scandal.

Waldo says:

Gentlemen and Ladies, This just hit minutes ago. Panic and chaos are taking place at ATF headquarters in advance of the anticipated media releases today and tomorrow. Below is a message just sent from the subordinate of Jim McDermond from the ATF Office of Public and Governmental Affairs. An emergency request is being issued to all ATF Public Information Officers to find ATF stories with a positive spin to counter-influence was is expected today. Very insulting and very much the character of ATF management. Please respond to me that you received this. I think it will be critical to your stories and for Senator Grassley to further see demonstrated ATF’s continued desire to spin and cover up.

Lord knows how McDermond's going to spin this tomorrow. Here's the ATF Spin Doctor's incantation --

Public Information Officers:

Please make every effort for the next two weeks to maximize coverage of ATF operations/enforcement actions/arrests at the local and regional level. Given the negative coverage by CBS Evening News last week and upcoming events this week, the bureau should look for every opportunity to push coverage of good stories. Fortunately, the CBS story has not sparked any follow up coverage by mainstream media and seems to have fizzled.

It was shoddy reporting, as CBS failed to air on-the-record interviews by former ATF officials and HQ statements for attribution that expressed opposing views and explained the law and difficulties of firearm trafficking investigations. The CBS producer for the story made only a feigned effort at the 11th hour to reach ATF HQ for comment.

This week (To 3/1/2011), Attorney General Holder testifies on the Hill and likely will get questions about the allegations in the story. Also (The 3/3/2011), Mexico President Calderon will visit the White House and likely will testify on the Hill. He will probably draw attention to the lack of political support for demand letter 3 and Project Gunrunner.

ATF needs to proactively push positive stories this week, in an effort to preempt some negative reporting, or at minimum, lessen the coverage of such stories in the news cycle by replacing them with good stories about ATF. The more time we spend highlighting the great work of the agents through press releases and various media outreaches in the coming days and weeks, the better off we will be.

Thanks for your cooperation in this matter. If you have any significant operations that should get national media coverage, please reach out to the Public Affairs Division for support, coordination and clearance.

Thank you,

Scot L. Thomasson

Chief, ATF Public Affairs Division

Washington, DC

Desk 202-648-7089

Cell 206-730-0005


Anonymous said...

gunwalker hits drudge....finally

Dakota said...

Oh shit ... everybody run for cover they need to make some arrests that will make them look good huh?

Well good luck with that ....NOT!

Anonymous said...

Heh. "Shoddy Reporting". Indeed. This is one very rare instance when I can say that CBS did an excellent, professional job in thier reporting.

I'll bet you can expect a big run of "gun busts" to try and bolster thier image.

Think they are stupid enough to pull another Waco?

Unfortantely, I think so.

Phil said...

In other words, I just shit my pants.

oldsmobile98 said...

Wow. Thomasson is a grade-A weaselrat.

Anonymous said...

GUNWALKER STORY ON DRUDGE REPORT TONIGHT!!! It's about damned time! Tip o' the boonie to you, sir!

sofa said...

spin ? or is it more like a swirl ?

Anonymous said...

Reported on Fox too:

Dedicated_Dad said...


"...Thankfully, none of our other lap-dogs in the 'authorized media' have slipped their chains, and so far seem to be ignoring this just like we told 'em.

We know they can be relied upon to help us cover up our misdeeds -- so y'all get busy and help some ol' ladies 'cross the street, fetch some kittens outta trees -- y'all know the drill!

If anybody can get some coverage of y'all building a playground somewhere, or saving some puppies! People LOVE puppies!

Hey - while I'm at it - any churches full of wackos in anybody's neighborhood? We need us a good telegenic raid so we can show all the sheeple how we're protecting them from 7th-day Adventists and other "undesirables" -- gnome-sane? 'Course it'll help if they're just a bit 'off' - you know what we need - and if there's kids, well -- you KNOW they're being molested!

Y'all know the drill -- any of you noobs just give ol' Waco Jim a call -- he'll fill you in on the details..."

I'd strongly advise all to watch their backs for the next couple of weeks...

Messrs. MBV and Codrea: You Gents have an awful lot to be awfully PROUD of here!!

I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say ...


PS: WV="vigogro" -- just the sort of fertilizer this story needs -- as opposed to the kind that's being and will be shoveled from the concrete chocolate-starfish of the universe...

Anonymous said...

Whether or not they "shit their pants", some of "US" better watch out for flash bangs. Arresting people makes for good press, even if the arrests have no merit. Remember amigos, beating them eventually in court doesn't bring your dogs and children and wife back to life. Nothing more dangerous than the batfooks when they are running scared.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I concluded long ago that the ATF has a corrupt corporate culture.

This memo continues a long cultural tradition in the Bureau. Recall that the Waco Debacle started off with an attempt by the Bureau to conduct a showcase raid to give them good publicity for the sake of an upcoming Congressional budget hearing.

A lot of people died as a result of that bureaucratic dysfunction. In the current gunrunning debacle, we will only find out about some of the American deaths the Bureau is tied to. We will never know about all the Mexicans who have been murdered as a result.

How many bodies does it take to force the Bureau to be disbanded?

Robert Fowler said...

As a dealer, I'm a bit worried about this. I would hate to be "made a example" of their efforts to do good. It's going to be interesting to see what happens over the next couple of weeks. We could be seeing a few dealers loosing their licenses over paperwork mistakes just so they can look good. God help all of us small dealers.Keep up the good work. You and David are doing a excellent job.

Alan W. Mullenax said...

Hey, listening to Limbaugh and guess what he's talking about. Gunwalker!

Anonymous said...

Hate to be a dissenting voice here, but this is exactly what PR folks are supposed to do. I would be shocked if their PR office didn't issue a memo almost exactly like this.

Now, as to whether a federal law enforcement agency should HAVE a PR department, well, that's a different question. I'd support an earmark to de-fund THIS position instantly. Bloody hack!


BlackPowderBill said...

From my blog:
Thoughts for today project Gun Walker

People keep sending me news links and links to the Mayor's against gun violence telling me what were up against. Like I just jumped off the truck in the big city is all I can figure.

IMHO: We all know what were up against. So when the top law enforcement agency in the country is busted,AGAIN for running guns into criminals hands. Just exactly when are firearms owners going to wake up and say, HEY WHOA hold on!! First its drugs you're running, then money to South American Dictators,arms to Middle Eastern rebels, and now firearms to drug runners in an effort to maybe bust a cartel.
Come on, just how far is the Justice department willing to go to get a bust? Evidently all the way up to & including murder is how I see it.

Maybe Glenn Beck of Faux news will do an in depth report on the subject as soon as he wipes the tears from his eyes.
Livid in New York

Anonymous said...

Rush Limbaugh picked up on the story but screwed it up. Nevertheless, the fact that he talked about it is more evidence that the story has not "fizzled" If someone has a way to get him the Thomasson spin memo, and convince him that this is not just about guns going to Mexico, but about systemic corruption in the ATF, maybe he would follow up with facts and get the story straight.

Anonymous said...

Spread the link around.

Anonymous said...

Cut the spin machine off at the knees.

Put forth a bill ending all funding for ATF "Public Information Officers" and/or expenditures for ATF media relations.

Using public money this way to cover these bureaucratic asses is a disgrace.