Thursday, March 17, 2011

A local news media outlet finally asks critical questions about Karl Dean's Japan trip

As published in this morning's Nashville Scene, Liz Garrigan asks the same questions I've been asking of the Mayor's decision to go to Japan since he left last Friday:

Dean is in Japan, of all places — commingling an economic development trip with a spring break family getaway. Think about that for a minute. The country first suffers an earthquake, then a tsunami that causes more damage than the earthquake. So the mayor's response is to call and ask whether he should postpone his economic development trip? "The mayor conferred with the consul general of Japan in Nashville before proceeding with the trip," a mayoral press release Friday read. "Consul General Hiroshi Sato ensured Mayor Dean he would not be in the way."

So Dean packed up his iPod and his rep ties and hopped aboard a flight to Asia, a move any freshman political science student would find misguided.

"Karl Dean, our little ol' mayor, is over there running around the Japanese countryside!" Craddock practically exclaims. "I just don't understand that to save my life. I just told my wife, I don't know who advises the mayor, but surely they'd have told him, 'Postpone your trip, brother. This is no time to go to Japan.' There is a pattern to this kind of behavior."

That may be the first time I've ever agreed with Michael Craddock.

Now I understand the difference between an editorial and reporting, and I acknowledge that Garrigan is making claims that reporters cannot make. But reporters did not have to make editorial assertions last week to simply ask the question: "How is an economic development trip (assuming it was really that) or a family Spring Break vacation to Japan essential during quakes, tsunamis, and nuclear plant failures?"


  1. You're too poor to understand how we rich folk roll. It's all connected. We are rich so we go to Japan for vacation under the cover of being invited there. We only get Spring Break once a year for our school-aged children.

    We have enough money to not give a darn what anyone else thinks. We are headed back today though cuz this place sucks from the earthquake, tsunami, and near nuclear reactor failure. We like to get the red carpet treatment the wife's money is used to buying. We aren't getting it because everyone is focused on matters other than us. We can't figure it out because they told us it would be ok to continue or trip.

  2. You tell em Ricky Bobby.

  3. Liz's story broke the ice.

    It's about time some local media stepped up.

    Thank you.

    Dean's Zamboni machine only works on thin ice.

    I've alway said he can't swim in deep water.

  4. Liz Garrigan let it all hang out. It was refreshing to see such an in depth article concerning the lack of organization in the Mayors administrative offices published in a publication that can be obtained on a wide spread basis.

    Informed Nashvillians have come to count on Mike and a few others who stay tuned in and cut thru the fluff presented to us as news. I salute Mike for his tireless efforts and Mrs. Garrigan for taking the truth to the next level of circulation.

  5. So I guess the Nashville Scene's, Liz Garrigan has an inside scope on what is going on in Nashville, Tennessee while she is living in Paris, France. Did she write this story in Paris, France or was she in Nashville?

  6. This offices blunders and infighting are crystal clear world wide.
    Have you ever heard, things become clearer when you take a step back?
    If she was in Nashville or Paris, she got it right.

  7. I doubt that Garrigan has lost touch with what's going on in Nashville. In fact, she probably has more people reaching out and willing to speak to her than when she was living here. I wish other reporters and media would now step up to the plate.

  8. Yes that is probably right Mr. Barner. Lol... Ms. Garrigan is probably in tune from Paris, France on what is going on in Nashville, Tennessee just like you are with what is currently going on in the entire country of Japan. Although I'm not criticizing the content of the article just that it is pretty ridiculous for someone who is living on another continent to write such a story and not give the names of the people who have given her the alleged inside information.

  9. Hey Anonymous,

    Why do you not have the balls to sign your name?

    If you want to represent our city, then stand up!

    I doubt that we will hear from you.

  10. Mr. Barner I'm just pointing out that it is hypocritical for everyone on this blog to criticize Mayor Dean for being in Japan during the aftermath of the earthquake when in reality you all don't have a clue regarding what is really going on in Japan because you are not their to see it in person. However, you all applaud an article written by someone who is alleged to being living in Paris, France. Just like you and I really don't know what is actually happening in Japan because we are not there, how can Ms.Garrigan accurately write about what has happened with the fairgrounds if she is not in Nashville on the ground investigating the matter? Again, I'm not saying that her piece is not accurate just that I find it lacking credibility because she may be living on another continent. The New York Times writer spent several days in Nashville and attended a Metro Council meeting before the story was written and published in the NYT. I'm not aware of Ms.Garrigan attending meetings or meeting with parties from both sides of the issue.

  11. Don't have a clue? I've been following news & social media coverage of the quake, tsunami, & nuclear disaster since the Friday that the Mayor left. At times Karl Dean, even in Tokyo, seemed to be unaware of the magnitude of the disaster. Given the level of mistrust reported among the Japanese for what their government is telling them and the seeming efforts by Tokyo Electric to soft-pedal the disaster, it is not unreasonable to believe that Karl Dean did not have a complete picture while he was there.

    But perhaps it is easier to place an implicit and unexamined trust in the spin coming out of the Mayor's communication office or to confuse the fawning flackery of the Dean loyalists with an actual grasp of what is happening in Japan.

  12. Anonymous, Liz lived here for YEARS. If I moved to Paris tomorrow, in six months I could still have a very good handle on this town. And BTW, who ARE you? I think you're a wimp, if no one else. Please sign your postings as Wimpy (no offense to Popeye's pal).