Keynote Speaker

Jeffrey Bostick: introducing Mac McClelland.

References to this article.

Mac discusses instances of irresponsible reporting concerning the BP oil disaster, and of having to "look for the traces of Katrina's destruction".

The former research editor of Mother Jones was taken on a tour of New Orleans and was surprised at how badly most of the flooded areas still worked.

Discussion of the dismantling of public education on all levels is also being swept under the rug.

All of these things run through the reporting of the BP oil disaster.

Mac was told by Mother Jones to get on Twitter, which she initially resisted. But now Twitter has been the source of so many of her news tips and of where she stayed while in Grand Isle, enabled her to get her stories.

She was here to get an article about the New Orleans public defenders' office, but she looked at a map when the oil spill first happened and followed a hunch.

Discussion of how ineffective the government has been during the crisis, and of how little the Coast Guard was of help. There was no oversight of the numbers; they all came from BP.

It's easier to smuggle Burmese refugees over the border than it is to get a boat off Grand Isle, LA, to investigate the oil spill. And what is appalling is how complicit the mainstream media has been in the information blackout on the oil spill.

Recent pictures of the spill are here. Where's the oil? It's still out there on the beaches and in the water.

Bloggers are the best bulwark against such ignorance. She could not have written her stories without the aid of locals, of tweeters and local blogs.

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