Michael R. Shannon
Michael R. Shannon is a Virginia-based public relations and media consultant with MANDATE: Message, Media & Public Relations who has worked in over 75 elections on three continents and a handful of islands. Michael’s columns have appeared on his own News & Messenger site and AmericaSpeakOn. The Tampa Trib has published some of his columns, as has Black Velvet Bruce Li. He was an editorial writer and columnist for the Dallas Morning News, and has been in politics and journalism since 1972. As consultant to The Israel Project, he has made a number of trips to Israel where he worked closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in their efforts to promote a positive image of Israel. Shannon has also conducted media and message training workshops for MFA and Israeli Defense Forces spokespersons along with representatives of various non–governmental organizations. During the UN Court trial in The Hague, Shannon worked closely with the MFA in its international media outreach. You can reach Michael at
. You can also read more on his blog, "The Whole Shebang (mostly)" at http://michaelshannon.wordpress.com/. Look for Michael's Book, "A Conservative Christian's Guidebook for Living in Secular Times: (Now With Added Humor!)".
The journalism establishment exemplified, by the MSM (mainstream media), does not believe in American exceptionalism. That’s reserved for the rubes in flyover country. Their admiration is reserved for themselves and the lofty position the “4th Estate” holds in contemporary society. What’s more, members do not respond positively when anyone questions this self–assessment.
An interesting tidbit buried deep in the Associated Press obituary for television journalist Mike Wallace proves this is not a recent phenomenon. Over 26 years ago Wallace and CBS were jointly sued for libel by retired Gen. William C. Westmorland after the broadcast of a documentary entitled “The Uncounted Enemy: A Vietnam Deception.”
The program alleged that Westmoreland deceived President Lyndon Johnson and the American public by orchestrating a conspiracy that fraudulently underestimated the size of the North Vietnamese Army.
Periodically there’s an eruption in Virginia Beach that catches us off guard. Much like a dormant volcano will occasionally demand attention, Pat Robertson grabs headlines by making an off–the–wall comment.
This doesn’t include predictable pronouncements regarding God’s wrath or the wages of sodomy. Everyone knows you can’t have a natural disaster without the Rev. Robertson piling on. What I’m referring to are non Jehovah–related eruptions.
Take Pat’s claim that he can leg press 2,000 lbs. — the equivalent of four Al Gore’s. Leg press involves letting a weighted sled slide down a 45–degree angle slope towards you. When your tibia and your femur reach a 90–degree angle, you contract your thigh muscles and push the sled back to the starting position.
Recently outraged Internet theologians took umbrage at my refusal to join the effort to transform Jesus into a big government, liberal Democrat that supports the Occupy squatters.
Most echoed secular interpreters of Christ who claim, “Jesus shares many of the values of those in the Occupy movement.”
I contend Jesus had plenty of time to confront civil authority, yet Christ focused on religious authority. He didn’t discuss politics with the centurion or tax rates with Matthew. In fact the only system of government approved by God was that of the judges, and the Jews disliked that arrangement so much they demanded a king.
What a let down. Here conservative Republicans were so close to respectability and even acceptance in polite society. In Prince William County, VA where I live, conservatives convinced themselves we’d come far from that time in the recent past when the WaPost described evangelicals (essentially another word for conservative Republicans, since there is considerable overlap among the two demographic groups) as “poor, undereducated and easily led.”
Then TheAtlantic.com piled on with this description of former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, “People are sometimes caught off guard by [his] intellectual competence because of his rural Arkansas habits (he and his wife lived in a trailer while the governor’s mansion was being renovated) and his outspoken evangelical views.”
Not those rural Arkansas habits again! What was Huckabee thinking when he moved into one of those tornado–bait tin cans? I happen to know there’s a Hilton in Little Rock.
There’s nothing like spending 43 months in prison for fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy in connection with Congressional influence–peddling to make you an advocate of political contribution reform.
Notorious Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff is back on what the late Watergate scandal participant, John Ehrlichman might term a “modified limited hang out” book tour.
Abramoff contends that Washington equals swamp and the only reason he went to jail, for what he claims is standard operating procedure, is Jack made the mistake of raising his head too far above the scum line.
Jack’s obvious continuing pride in his accomplishments on behalf of his clients is cause to doubt sincere contrition on his part. And Abramoff appears blissfully unaware that the reputation he earned and scandal he created are in large part responsible for the GOP losing the House in 2006 — or if not unaware, he’s certainly unrepentant.
During this holiday season it’s very difficult to determine the socially acceptable method for serving pepper spray to ‘progressive’ class warriors on the front lines of aimless protest.
Previously, Humboldt County, CA deputies had a situation where a lumber company’s offices were seized by protestors who refused to leave. Deputies announced pepper spray was on the menu and delivered individual servings on the end of a Q–tip gently placed inside the eyelid.
Ungrateful progressives did not appreciate organic extra–spicy and news conferences, lawsuits and attempts to have deputies fired ensued.
That’s one reason why it’s not surprising that last Friday when U. C. Davis’ officers faced much the same situation with a derivative set of occupy types; they dispensed with the personal touch and served their pepper spray family style.