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Jeff Gannon, Ace Reporter
So this guy Jeff Gannon shows up at the White House and wants press credentials so that he can attend the President's press conference. But his real name isn't Jeff Gannon, and he isn't really a reporter, although he's been playing one on the internet for a few months. His experience as a journalist seems to consist of posting slightly reworded Republican press releases on the website of Talon News, which is a conservative news outlet that hardly anyone has heard of (and which is also a barely disguised front organization for Republican activists). Oh, and this Gannon character also claims to be a born-again, bible-thumping, red-necked conservative, but he also seems to be connected to the gay porn industry. So what does the White House do when this guy approaches them? Well, they immediately give him press credentials, of course, and allow him to attend the president's Jan. 26 press conference, during which the president actually calls on him and Gannon proceeds to ask a strange, kiss-ass question about how it's possible for republicans to work with democrats since democrats are so 'divorced from reality'. I can only see one possibility--that Gannon was a republican shill. A fake reporter planted in the audience in order to ask softball questions. Very strange. But Gannon himself sounds like such an unusual and contradictory character that you have to wonder if he was simply the pawn in some kind of Manchurian Candidate type of situation... a struggling gay porn actor brainwashed and transformed into an ultra-conservative republican white house reporter.
Categories: JournalismPolitics
Posted by The Curator on Fri Feb 11, 2005
Um, I'm finding Salon's free site pass rather hard to use. So here's a site
I found that talks more about it. (You have to erase the '[/url' that appears at the end for some reason. Alex, you should look into this, it's corrupting my link!)
Posted by Citizen Premier  in  spite of public outcry  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  04:49 AM
Alex, it's JEFF Gannon, not John.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  05:35 AM
Alex,
Didn't this guy have a part to play in the Valerie Plame case. I think I read in the Washington Post awhile back, that Gannon had been supoenaed by Amassador Joe Wilson in the civil investigation of the "outting" of his CIA agent wife. If so, the plot thickens...

CCC
Posted by CCC  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  07:55 AM
Republican shill? Alex... that's French... say it again
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  10:05 AM
John/Jeff... schill/shill... guess I should have proofread.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  10:40 AM
Here's some classic Jeff Gannon stories:

http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/usnw/20050211/pl_usnw/some__jeff_gannon__highlights_____no_longer_available_on_the_talon_news_website171_xml

Hmmm... don't know what it is, but there's something fishy about those stories!
Posted by brian  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  11:35 AM
Unheard of: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A53640-2004Dec9.html
Posted by Chadds Ford Prefect  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  01:02 PM
Oh, so when the main stream media plant left-wing shills into a press conference (something that has been happening for years now) it's okay? What the hell is wrong with someone asking the President a positive question? No one seemed to mind when the left-leaning media failed to ask Clinton stinging questions about his timing on bombing Iraq (for those of you that have forgotten ... the bombing happened on the same day a Grand Jury was called to address his "I did not have sex with that woman" statement, among others).
Posted by FedUpWithLefties  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  01:19 PM
Unheard of II: CNN
Posted by Chadds Ford Prefect  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  01:21 PM
FedUpWithLefties, the issue isn't that Gannon asked a positive question. The issue is that he's obviously not a real reporter, and yet he's at a white house press conference being called on by the president. And, I know, this is where defenders of the administration suddenly get all philosophical about 'what is a real reporter?'.

If a democratic administration did this I'd be just as cynical about it, but we happen to have a republican administration in power right now.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  01:31 PM
altho he doesn't elaborate, investigative journalist Dave Lindorff identifies "Gannon" as James Gluckert in this article: http://www.counterpunch.com/lindorff02112005.html
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  01:40 PM
The most humorous part that you seem to have missed is that Jeff Gannon owns and runs several gay porn sites with a military theme and even appears in some of them. Love the Family Values Republican who gets caught doing this sort of thing-it really brightens my day!
Posted by Evan  in  Atlanta  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  02:53 PM
Here is the link:
http://www.nydailynews.com/02-10-2005/news/gossip/story/279466p-239417c.html
Posted by Evan  in  Atlanta  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  02:55 PM
CCC - According to the Washington Post, "Jeff Gannon" was the only reporter with access to an internal CIA memo identifying Valerie Plame as a covert agent (the WSJ had heard about this memo second-hand, but none of their reporters had personally seen it). Gannon/Guckert mentioned it in an interview with Ambassador Wilson.

How exactly does a fake reporter get access to internal CIA documents when the rest of the media is shut out of the loop? How did he get press credentials with a pseudonym? How is it that this same fake reporter is called upon by the president himself in a press conference?

For all I know, the CIA documents about Plame may be a hoax themselves perpetrated by this Guckert character. That makes his story even more interesting.
Posted by Leo Caesius  in  Astoria  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  04:15 PM
I'm relieved that this attempt to be sneaky by the Bush Administration was so sloppy. You can't fool all of the people all of the time, because there will always be some retards in the government smile
Posted by Citizen Premier  in  spite of public outcry  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  05:23 PM
If Fedupwithlefties can show me even one example of the mainstream news media (really mainstream, like a big daily newspaper, major wire service, or big TV network) planting a left-wing shill in a Presidential news conference (in this context, "shill" means a political activist who isn't really anybody other journalists would consider to be a journalist), I'll eat my shirt, and his (hers?) too.
Posted by Big Gary C  in  Dallas, Texas  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  06:39 PM
wow Alex, tell us what you really think, and don't hold back lol
Posted by darren  on  Fri Feb 11, 2005  at  09:02 PM
Big Gary C said:

"If Fedupwithlefties can show me even one example of the mainstream news media (really mainstream, like a big daily newspaper, major wire service, or big TV network) planting a left-wing shill in a Presidential news conference (in this context, "shill" means a political activist who isn't really anybody other journalists would consider to be a journalist), I'll eat my shirt, and his (hers?) too."

Right behind you, Gary. I've got some wardrobe I'd be willing to masticate as well.

I'm greatly amused by the sight of right-wingers being put in the position of having to defend a "reporter" with NO journalistic credentials who ran porn sites and who attended presidential press conferences under an assumed identity. Tough position there, especially for "family values" people, wouldn't you say?

As for reporters from the "mainstream media" asking tough questions of the president and his flack, boo friggin' hoo. That's their job! There IS a difference between asking questions that a press secretary may not be comfortable with and "bias."

This "Gannon" asshole was a fake from start to finish. Why are you defending him? Just because he called himself "conservative?" Is that an automatic "Get Out Of Jail Free" card?

If and when we find out that he was a cyber-pimp for sure, will that "conservative" thing continue to buy him slack? Where's your values now? Fake is fake. Mentioning something real or imagined that someone from the left may have done doesn't get him off the hook. All that is is an elaborate way of saying "Two wrongs make a right." That ain't in any Bible *I've* ever seen.
Posted by crankymediaguy  on  Sat Feb 12, 2005  at  03:46 AM
So, let see if I can keep this straight:

1) After dabbling in homoerotic cybersex, Guckert assumes the pseudonym Gannon.

2)Gannon/Guckert attends a single journalism seminar at a neocon think tank called The Leadership Institute, over the course of one weekend.

3)He fails to get clearance for a congressional press pass but manage to obtain a press pass issued daily by the White house press office.

4)There, Gannon/Guckert occupies his time re-releasing GOP talking points as if it were news.

5)Then somehow Gannon/Guckert gets slipped a classified CIA memo, which identifies Valerie Plame as a CIA operative.

6)And this information mysteriously falls into the hands of nationally syndicated columnist Bob Novak, who then writes and an article exposing Ms. Plame as a CIA operative(in violation of federal law) intending to both damage her effectiveness and discredit her husband Joe Wilson.

7)Mr. Novak wrote this piece after Ambassador Wilson made public his own State Department sponsored investigation and subsequent exposure of forged documents alleging exportation of uranium yellow-cake from Niger to Iraq.

8)This exposure was much to the chagrin of the Bush administration whose Secratary of State had testified before the United Nations General Assembly, that such documents were incontrovertable evudence that Sadam Hussien was in possession of fissionable materials.

9)And Sadam Hussien's possession of such material and biological weapons plus his clear collaboration with Al Qeda posed a direct threat to the safety of all Americans as well as the Middle East. These, at the time, were the most widely broadcast reasons for the USA to attack Iraq.

10)After running his scam for two years, Gannon/Gucket, is finally exposed as a political operative, not by his fellow mainstream journalists, but by bloggers incensed by a single flippant partisan rhetorical question Gannon/Gucket posed to the president, during his first press conference this year.

Have I got this right? Because, if so:

11)This is unfreakinbelivable.

CCC
Posted by CCC  on  Sat Feb 12, 2005  at  02:10 PM
I do like FedUpWithLefties's perfect example of the Neocon partisan's standard tactic when they're caught at something: change the subject and accuse someone else of wrongdoing. It's a type case, it is.
Posted by Carl Fink  on  Sat Feb 12, 2005  at  08:30 PM
y'all seen this auction on Ebay yet for Gannon's credential?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=3957884948&ssPageName=STRK:MESE:IT
Posted by chickster  on  Sat Feb 12, 2005  at  10:24 PM
Yeah, CCC, you got it essentially right, other than the fact that I haven't seen any direct connection between "Gannon" and Bob Novak.

I'm not really a Bill Clinton fan, but imagine if you will that a guy connected to porn--GAY porn, mind you--was in any way connected to him, then imagine the shit storm that would be stirred up by the right-wingers like Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly, etc. Um, where is the "family values" crowd on this one?

Like I said, they're in the awkward position of defending the "right" of a fake reporter connected to gay porn sites who used a pseudonym to have White House press credentials. Wow, talk about lowering the bar, huh?
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sun Feb 13, 2005  at  05:58 AM
So what is the connection between Gannon/Guckert and Bob Novak? Was this ever investigated by the grand jury looking into the Plame case? And where did Gannon/Guckert come from? What's his background? How did he become one of two paid staffer's at Talon News? Basically, who
Posted by CCC  on  Sun Feb 13, 2005  at  11:10 AM
Apparently, Gannon/Guckert has some tax problems too:

http://www.theconservativevoice.com/modules/news/article.php?storyid=2908
Posted by CCC  on  Sun Feb 13, 2005  at  12:55 PM
I just had a thought on this one because of the flap on the YCT bit. Follow me here, if this Gannon guy is in the porn industry, it would seem unlikely that he is connected with the Republicans. My guess is that people connected with the porn industry, without any statistics on this, are unlikely to be associated with the political party working hardest against that industry. So, this guy sets up a website claiming to be a Republican and uses that to gain favor with the White House and after asking a stupid question gets outed by a Democrat. Posibility to consider here is that he was a plant by the Democrats to embarass the Republicans and was a great success. Give the Democrats some praise on this one if true.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Sat Mar 05, 2005  at  08:04 PM
Right, CC, no way in hell a real republican would be into porn or would be (heaveans no) a homosexual. You've cracked the leftwing conspiracy.
Posted by Pist  on  Fri Apr 08, 2005  at  05:35 AM
Umm, Chris (remember me?), are you saying that because someone is against something publicly (insert Clinton joke here), that they would never do it?

Think carefully, and then google "republican criminals" before you respond.
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Fri Apr 08, 2005  at  05:47 AM
Christopher Cole said:

"I just had a thought on this one because of the flap on the YCT bit. Follow me here, if this Gannon guy is in the porn industry, it would seem unlikely that he is connected with the Republicans. My guess is that people connected with the porn industry, without any statistics on this, are unlikely to be associated with the political party working hardest against that industry."

Hey, Chris, I guess you haven't heard about the newest trend. It's C-R-A-Z-Y, man, and all the kids are talking about it.

It's called "hypocrisy" and anyone can get "into" it. What you do is SAY one thing but DO the opposite! Isn't that the wackiest thing you've ever heard of?
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Apr 08, 2005  at  06:53 AM
The three of you seem to have misunderstood my point. I was not saying that Republicans don't like porn, they are after all human, nor was I saying that there are no homosexual Republicans, I can remember publicity about the Log Cabin Republicans from some years back. My point was that a Republican would be unlikely to be a major player in the porn industry, especially the homosexual subset of the porn industry. It is more likely that this guy, Gannon, would be a Democrat or apolitical. If his unmasking wasn't deliberate, then it only shows that the Republicans didn't check very hard into his past. And if it was a Democrat that revealed his past, it is more likely that this is a Democratic dirty trick than a REpublican one.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Sat Apr 09, 2005  at  04:46 PM
Christopher Cole said:

"My point was that a Republican would be unlikely to be a major player in the porn industry, especially the homosexual subset of the porn industry. It is more likely that this guy, Gannon, would be a Democrat or apolitical."

Well, he is definitely NOT apolitical. Check his website, jeffgannon.com.

Christopher, I think you're making a fundamental mistake here. The problem seems to be that you simply assume that the Republicans (I refer here to people high up in the party, not individual members) are sincere. Why do you make this assumption?

I've found that a lot of seeming inconsistancies (rhetoric versus behavior) can be easily reconciled if you simply stop assuming that a person is sincere in what they say.

Think about it for a moment: Many Republicans have won office recently on a platform that opposes gay marriage and abortion. The Republicans currently have a majority in both houses of Congress AND control a majority of state governorships and legislatures. The Democrats would have a hard, or impossible, time successfully opposing just about anything that the Republicans tried to get through Congress. Yet, despite this huge advantage, the Republicans haven't even attempted to INTRODUCE a bill opposing either of those things.

If the time to introduce legislation regarding things you have demonized as two of the greatest evils in American life isn't when you have control of government, when would it be?

Get my point? Basically, what I'm saying is that they care more about using these "evils" to "energize" their base than about actually *doing* anything about them. They are not sincere in their "opposition" to them.

Once you stop assuming sincerity on their part, suddenly the existance of a Jeff Gannon in their midst doesn't seem so hard to understand.

"If his unmasking wasn't deliberate, then it only shows that the Republicans didn't check very hard into his past. And if it was a Democrat that revealed his past, it is more likely that this is a Democratic dirty trick than a REpublican one."

No, what it shows is that they didn't CARE about his past, until it became a liability, that is.

Over this weekend, a major Republican strategist who helped, among others, Jesse Helms get elected announced that he married his BOYFRIEND in December. Ken Mehlman, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, is gay. Last year, a Republican Congressman who has stridently opposed gay rights, was caught advertising for sex on a gay website. Getting the picture yet?

You need to be more skeptical. Just because someone SAYS something, that doesn't mean that they are sincere. Often, people become fanatics in seeming to oppose that which they themselves are "guilty" of. It's called "distraction."
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sun Apr 10, 2005  at  06:14 AM
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