One of the biggest things a journalist has to watch out for is becoming a messenger for somebody or some group's agenda. Your aim is to report the news, not to turn yourself into a stick wielded by those with special interests to smack their enemies with. That's what bloggers are for.
It seems KVIA has no problem being used by Four Names Allala and her growing band of misfits. You can read the latest story pertaining to the emails on chucoleaks HERE.
The story starts out rather pointedly:
"Chucoleaks.org is once again revealing some of City Manager Joyce Wilson's emails, and in this case it's Three Legged Monkey Owner Mike Armstrong who is taking issue with them."
Well, that's exciting. One would expect to see emails from the City Manager in this story. Well, there are no emails from (or to) Joyce Wilson in this story. NONE. NOT A SINGLE REFERENCE TO JOYCE WILSON IS PROVIDED IN THE EMAILS THAT THIS STORY WAS BUILT ON. Obviously the reporter, Ashlie Rodriguez is an idiot. Is she also a liar? Depends on whether she threw the City Manager part in there on purpose to hype her story that is decidedly not about the City Manager. If she did it by accident - she's just a bad journalist. No matter what, she's been taken advantage of by someone with an agenda.
The news director over at KVIA should know better than to let a story go out the door that is full of blatantly misleading information. Especially since the reporter didn't even try to contact the city for comment. You have a single source story and most of the time they get spiked. You need at least two sources and it's a no-brainer to ask the people accused of wrong doing what they their take is on the situation. I guess they couldn't ask Wilson since she isn't mentioned in the emails...
Here's the real kicker - it's actually good story if you take out the baseless accusation that Joyce Wilson somehow had something to do with it. I have said in the past that the city attorney, Emma Acosta and others have purposely screwed the owner of the Three Legged Monkey (TLM) based on a pack of lies invented by the city attorney's family member. These emails show that there was a concerted effort to get him and that even the cops were tired of trying to entrap the guy. Hell, I'm the guy who posted the proof of the frivilous 911 calls when no real media outlet would.
Assuming that an email from a cop saying "higher ups" means Joyce Wilson and only Joyce Wilson is just stupid and shows that the reporter doesn't know much about the story or anything about plural nouns. The term "higher-ups" could mean Emma Acosta, the mayor or his assistant at the time - Sylvia Firth (now city attorney). We don't know who exactly, but we do know that no one single person is named and a reporter can not retain a shred of integrity by making inferences based on the biased opinions of her sources. There is as much evidence in the emails to point to President Obama and Governor Rick Perry as the "higher-ups" as there is pointing to Joyce Wilson - which is to say "none."
You may remember that Firth's family member is a ring leader in the vendetta against TLM. Her position in the mayor's office allowed what was a typical do-gooder neighbor's bullshit to turn into a situation where the city got involved in violating a citizen's right to do business. "Higher-ups" could have been Firth and the mayor given that's where all of this started.
We also know that Emma Acosta got in on the act to shut them down after the neighborhood association threatened to run someone against her. She cut them a deal to endorse their association head for her seat once she announced she'd be running for mayor. It is possible that she is a part of the "higher-ups" telling the police to pressure them.
There are also deputy city managers between the chief and the city manager that could be the "higher-ups." The universe of "higher-ups" is quite large and no good journalist would make an inference given the size of the pool of possible suspects. By assuming they were talking about Joyce Wilson, she handed over control of the station's newsroom to Four Names Allala and her band of misfits. Way to go KVIA - you're now somebody's bitch.
Not since I received photographic evidence of one very controversial attorney standing over an El Paso Times' reporter's shoulder telling him what to write for a story involving her known adversaries, have I seen such an unethical infiltration of a news department. Dr. Barthy Byrd used to send her top journalism candidates over to KVIA for internships (I was one), but I bet she'd never do it again after she saw this garbage.
Once we can get away from the false premise of the story (Joyce Wilson's email), there's actually some funny stuff going on.
Again, I've always said that Mike Armstrong has been unfairly targeted and is also a complete moron. He proved me right both with the emails and his ridiculous quotes in the story.
The story says: "Armstrong says the emails prove the city is purposely trying to shut him down." They didn't quote him directly, but I wish they had. For Armstrong to point to these emails as evidence that the city wants to shut him down is like inferring that a guy who is wearing head to toe Dallas Cowboys schwag is a Cowboys fan because he told someone he hated the Redskins. Has Mike Armstrong not seen where the city and council members have explicitly said they want to shut him down? They've only said it out loud a million times on the record! Seriously, these emails are nothing compared to what they have said and done publicly. What an idiot! Although, I think he's a bigger moron because he didn't do his own open records request on his bar in the first place.
He then goes on to spout off some conspiracy theory about a resort hotel that the city wants to put on the property. I'm guessing he never heard the city when they cited all the calls to the police, the parking problems and the general condition of his regular crowd as the reason they wanted him out. Because they couldn't force the lease holder to kick him out, the city just bought the land back so they could become the lease holder and kick him out. All of these facts are well known to everyone... everyone but this moron Mike Armstrong. There is no hotel and why this idiot would invent one is beyond me.
Mike Armstrong should have already had a million dollar payday from the city and the neighborhood association, but he's so stupid he can't pull it off. The facts are on his side - they're much worse than his invented hotel scheme could ever be. Somehow the idiot doesn't realize he's his own worst enemy. There's no reason to lie when the facts are on your side. Yet, this idiot keeps lying.
Bottom line - the city and everybody else who tried to kill TLM were out of line. What they did to TLM was disgusting. However, this news story isn't about that. It's about emails that don't contain Joyce Wilson's name. Now, if they can get some emails showing where Wilson told Allen to go after them - then they have something. Until then - KVIA has defamed Joyce Wilson and I hope they get sued.