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Grapevine Whine - Still Spinning About Katrina

Reported by Nancy - December 23, 2005 -

On Thursday night (12/22), "picking" #1 on the Grapevine segment of Special Report was (yet another) effort to distract viewers from the abysmal federal response to Hurricane Katrina & its aftermath. This time, the target of choice was the Congressional Black Caucus & its charitable offshoot, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation. The timing couldn't be better to distract viewers from ongoing revelations about the multiple failures of FEMA.

Here's "picking" #1:

The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation blasted the Bush administration for its slow response to Hurricane Katrina, but has yet to distribute any of the $400,000 it raised for Katrina victims. In the aftermath of the storm, CBC member Jesse Jackson Jr called the lack of response by the government, "shockingly awful," & Carolyn Kilpatrick said she was "ashamed of America." But a CBCF spokesman tells Cybercast News that funds won't be distributed until January or February at the earliest after a committee decides how to spend the money.

Comments: Cybercast News is an extremely partisan group, so I'm not surprised Hume would pick up on their "report." The article Hume drew from for his "picking" sets the tone with its headline: Bush-Bashing Black Charity Sits on Katrina Cash & includes the quotes from Jackson (D-IL) & Kilpatrick (D-MI), as well as others. Here are the parts that relate to the Grapevine "picking:"

The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, which slammed the Bush administration for its allegedly slow and racially insensitive response to Hurricane Katrina, has yet to spend any of the estimated $400,000 that it raised for the victims of the Aug. 29 storm.
"We are collecting all the way up through the very end of the year and then our board has set aside a committee who is going to administer the funds," Patty Rice, spokeswoman for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF), told Cybercast News Service on Wednesday. ...
The CBCF then launched its own relief fund on Sept. 21, with a stated goal of raising $1 million to help Gulf Coast residents rebuild their lives. ... [T]he CBCF claimed immediate success, telling reporters on Sept. 21 that it had already received $700,000 in corporate pledges.
But on Wednesday, exactly three months after the news conference launching the CBCF relief fund, Rice told Cybercast News Service that the Foundation has actually raised "somewhere in the neighborhood of $350 to $400,000." She added that the distribution of the money would not begin until January or February of 2006 at the earliest. ...

Looks to me like the CBCF launched their effort Sept 21, got immediate pledges of $700,000 & has so far received about half of that. That's not a bad timeline in terms of raising money for charity, & they're probably trying to collect as much of the rest as possible before deciding how any of it will be spent, which makes eminent practical sense if you stop & think about it for a minute. Whoops! THINKING is the last thing Fox wants viewers to do.

Why pick on the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation ? Could it be to distract viewers from the news that, as ABC reports, Gulf Coast Aid Will Be Siphoned From FEMA? Or perhaps it's to distract from the ongoing revelations of the mess the Bush administration has made with FEMA, such as this in the Washington Post: Brown's Turf Wars Sapped FEMA's Strength?

Can you say DISTRACTORAMA? I knew you could!

If you'd like to complain to Fox about this, email: special@foxnews.com

NOTE TO READERS: Please stay on topic (Fox's distractorama machine, or the topics touched on in this particular "picking"). O/T comments will be deleted. Thanks.

WARNING (this thread only): Anyone who mentions Blanco or Nagin will be banned for 24 hours. This is about Fox's reporting that targets the CBCF.