Hey Y'all,After listening to this morning's broadcast of This American Life, I feel sad for poor Ira, who got duped by Mike Daisey. If you missed the show, you can listen to the podcast here. The short version is this-- ala Oprah and James Frey (who, ironically, Mike Daisey did a piece about), Ira got duped into believing a mostly fabricated story created by Daisey, and presented as truth, about the working conditions of the Chinese factory workers who assemble iProducts.
There are so many sad and stupid parts to this story. For example-- conditions for workers in factories DO suck, which has been established by reputable sources. So Daisey didn't really need to lie now, did he? But in the tradition of a long line of narcissistic fucks who put their own popularity ahead of the facts (I'm talking to you Jason Blair, James Frey, Stephen Glass and the whole lot of you assholes), Daisey was far more concerned with gaining accolades (and before he was found to be fraudulent, he got PLENTY-- the original episode of TAL on which he appeared was the most downloaded TAL podcast EVER), than presenting the truth.
What's Worse? When he was found out, and then brought on the show to explain himself, did he back down? Did he apologize? NO, NO, NO. In a sort of doublespeak of a level not witnessed since the Bush administration, he babbled incomprehensibly. He also posted a note at his blog-- where we are not allowed to comment (of course not) standing by himself.
|Hey, Mike? Maybe you need to dump that water on your pants cause THEY'RE ON FIRE, dude.|
Here's a kooky aside-- I actually had an email exchange with Mike awhile back. He was coming to Austin to host the Moth at the Paramount. I had been invited to perform in that show, but backed out when the dumbshit producer kept trying to push me into places I didn't want to go, trying to get me to shape my story with details she was inserting that weren't true to the story. Do we see a theme here? Mike was nice enough in our exchange, and I thanked him and told him to give me a holler next time he's in town, and I offered to promote his one man show. I AM OFFICIALLY RESCINDING THAT INVITATION MIKE. Do NOT come to Austin. Leave us ALONE.
Here's another kooky aside-- I have also had email exchanges with Ira, since I have been trying for about eight years to get on the show. Ira has always been super nice and super real.
So while, yes, TAL could have and should have done a better job of fact checking, the real problem is not TAL, it's Mike Daisey. I am feeling very bad for Ira right now. But I am also feeling the love for him. Because unlike Mike Daisey, Ira came out of the gates this morning owning up to TAL's responsibility in presenting this story, he apologized profusely, and he did so multiple times. He exhibited grace under pressure and so, though he can't turn back time and unrun the story, he did not run and hide.
|It's okay, Ira, we all make mistakes. You still KICK ASS!|
For this, I commend him and give him a Kick Ass Award. Thank you, Ira!
I invite all of you to post your Ira support here. I'll be sure to send him your messages.