Patterico's Pontifications

9/24/2009

NEA Update: Yosi Sergant Resigns; UPDATE: L.A. Times Has Been Silent on Sergant All Year

Filed under: Dog Trainer,Obama,Politics — DRJ @ 9:10 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Yosi Sergant, the former NEA communications director who was demoted after revelations about a controversial conference call with artists, has resigned:

“His resignation has been accepted and is effective immediately,” NEA spokeswoman Victoria Hutter said in an e-mail.

Sergant, a public relations professional from Los Angeles, had come to Washington to work in the Office of Public Engagement at the White House. He moved to the NEA in May and was reassigned from his post as communications director two weeks ago after coming under fire from conservative Fox News Channel host Glenn Beck.

The talk show host accused Sergant of arranging an August conference call with the Office of Public Engagement and United We Serve, a service initiative of the administration, to recruit artists to create works in support of Obama policies.”

Another one under the bus.

– DRJ

UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I guess according to the L.A. Times, Yosi Sergant is not a story now and has not been a story at any point this year:

L.A. Times Silent on Sergant

This never happened, gentlemen.

UPDATE x2 BY PATTERICO: What’s worse, they can’t claim they didn’t know about it — they blogged about it. They just didn’t bother to inform print readers. Obama screw-ups are good enough for minor blogs at the the L.A. Times web site, but not good enough for the L.A. Times itself. Thanks to commenter Foo Bar for reminding us of this fact, which helps demonstrate further the way that editors fail to take seriously any story that helps Republicans — especially Glenn Beck!

63 Comments

  1. Thank you, BigHollywood.com. Can we get Mark Lloyd to resign now?

    Comment by John Hitchcock (3fd153) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:16 pm

  2. A better bumper sticker slogan might go…another one bites the bus. Not exactly correct word usage, but once a phrase catches on the sing song effect cancels out the imprecision of the phrase anyway. Not unlike ‘ I couldn’t care less’ vs ‘I could care less’. Freddie Mercury would likely has a hissy fit, but he daid.

    Comment by political agnostic (0aba1c) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:20 pm

  3. Or, “Another One Rides the Bus” . . . of Obamarejects.

    Comment by Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (9e6be3) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:29 pm

  4. The talk show host accused Sergant of arranging

    Nice bias there…

    It’s like Beck wasn’t going off the invite Sergant himself sent out.

    Comment by Scott Jacobs (d027b8) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:35 pm

  5. Just on the face of it he *looked* like the archetypal dirty socialist hippy fascist. Very central casting. If you had shown me his picture before this and said he was one of the little president man’s douchebags I would have thought it was parody.

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:42 pm

  6. The little president man’s dirty socialist Associated Press hasn’t touched on Sargent’s resignation yet it should be noted I think.

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:46 pm

  7. omg. Who’s retarded? It’s me!!!

    i spelled his name wrong in my google news search

    here’s Barack Obama’s dirty socialist Associated Press on the subject

    I honestly don’t know how I get to the end of my day

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:49 pm

  8. Thank you for staying on top of this, DRJ. The lawsuit is mind-boggling and this shows that Breitbart’s latest got their attention.

    Comment by Patterico (64318f) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:50 pm

  9. The little president man’s dirty socialist Associated Press is also under the impression that Glenn Beck is calling the shots in the little president man’s administration.

    Sergant came under fire from Fox News Channel commentator Glenn Beck, who accused Sergant of arranging two conference calls in August with United We Serve, which promotes the president’s call for public service. The purpose of the meeting, Beck said, was to find artists who would create works that promoted Obama’s policies.

    Apparently the dirty socialist Associated Press is unable to independently verify Mr. Beck’s claims.

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/24/2009 @ 9:54 pm

  10. Here’s what I just posted at WashingtonPost.com:

    It’s a beautiful thing to witness.

    Two people who didn’t belong in the executive branch (Van “I can be an *sshole” Jones & Yosi “I drank the [Obama] Kool-Aid” Sergant) — GONE. Corrupt-to-the-core ACORN — defunded and distanced from the Census Bureau and the IRS, as they should have been in the first place. Liberal Democrats on the run from “community organizers” and the voting block loyal to them.

    Go ahead, Obamabots. Whine some more about crazy Glenn Beck and sleazy Andrew Breitbart and those silly dress-up kids O’Keefe and Giles. Insult them, slander them, take your best shot. They won’t mind, because THEY GOT RESULTS.

    You know why? Because their weapon of choice is incontrovertible fact. If the BHO White House could have proved them wrong, [it] would have.

    Hopefully next to feel the Obama bus wheels will be Teresa DeCaro, the author of the HHS letter threatening Humana for expressing its corporate free speech.

    Comment by L.N. Smithee (da388b) — 9/24/2009 @ 10:07 pm

  11. This is what happens when you think the whole world is on your side and you can’t do anything wrong.

    Life experience matters. The whole world isn’t on your side and sometimes you do things wrong.

    It’s not a sin of politics, it’s a sin of hubris.

    And I know that the left liked to throw the “hubris” accusation around about the former President and Vice President. And maybe they were guilty of believing too much in their own self-worth.

    But, they were a far cry from the “Communications Director for the National Endowment of the Arts.”

    Just a hint: If you work for the federal government, the longer your title, the less entitled you are to hubris or respect from the unwashed masses. Because, you see, you work for us, all of us — not just the voters who elected your dear leader to office.

    Comment by Ag80 (592691) — 9/24/2009 @ 10:24 pm

  12. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/politics/wire/sns-ap-us-obama-arts-flap,0,7835978.story

    Comment by Google (78bb2b) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:21 am

  13. In the url where it says /politics/wire/ doesn’t that mean this is just a wire story the LAT probably didn’t even know was on their site. Mr. Google? I don;t think that was in the actual newspaper thingy. I think this part under that story is more to the point:

    Related stories

    From the L.A. Times

    * White House defends tariffs on Chinese tires

    Around the Web

    * Rocco’s First Words — By: NRO Staff|corner.nationalreview.com
    * White House Cautious Over NEA Politics Flap|npr.org
    * Spreading Socialism Through Street Murals|pheedcontent.com

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/25/2009 @ 5:19 am

  14. punctuation is hard at 5:19 a.m. I think

    Comment by happyfeet (6b707a) — 9/25/2009 @ 5:20 am

  15. Oh come on, DRJ. I’m sure the LA Times was covering important issues like the jobless recovery. Why, I bet a search of the website turns up a bunch of hits. See! I found an editorial that mentions the jobless recovery. That MUST be what they are focusing on instead of why Obama’s people are lining up along the bus route, waiting for a push.
    Was that enough sarcasm? I have more somewhere if it’s needed.

    Comment by SomeOtherSteve (76003c) — 9/25/2009 @ 6:05 am

  16. I think #8 from Patterico is in the wrong thread.

    Comment by PCD (1d8b6d) — 9/25/2009 @ 6:18 am

  17. Thank you, commenter “Google” at comment 12 for pointing out Patterico is wrong to claim that Yosi Sergant has never been mentioned by the LAT at any point this year.

    In addition to the AP story which commenter “Google” found and which ran on the 22nd, there were at least two posts in the LAT’s “Culture Monster” blog which mentioned Yosi Sergant in the context of the NEA politicization story. There was one on the 10th and another on the 22nd.

    I don’t have access to the LAT print edition, so I don’t know if these blog posts appear in the print edition. It may be true that Yosi Sergant wasn’t mentioned in the print edition. Given that many readers read the LAT online, though, it’s simply wrong to claim that according to the LAT, “this never happened”.

    What I don’t understand is that Patterico made a very similar error just a few weeks ago when he claimed that the Van Jones Truther petition story hadn’t been mentioned by the LAT until Jones resigned. In fact, it had been mentioned in an LAT blog post.

    I explained to him that the LAT archive search apparently does not index blog posts, so when he’s checking whether a story was covered by the LAT he can also use a site-specific Google search, like this, to search the LAT.

    I can sort of understand Patterico making the first mistake regarding Van Jones, since you might expect the LAT archive search to include blog posts. I can’t understand Patterico making a second mistake like this within 3 weeks, after I told him how to avoid it.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 8:30 am

  18. This is what happens when you think the whole world is on your side and you can’t do anything wrong.

    Exactly.

    Also, I love happyfeet.

    Comment by MayBee (48424e) — 9/25/2009 @ 8:30 am

  19. blog posts appear in the print edition.

    How common of a practice is it for blog posts to appear in the printed version of the LA Times?

    But, it is easy to see when people like FooBar want to distract from the topic. He did not say it did not appear on their blog, he said it did not appear in the paper.

    Comment by JD (c48dbe) — 9/25/2009 @ 9:00 am

  20. Considering that Foo Bar sounds a lot like FUBAR, much becomes clear, JD.

    Comment by Eric Blair (0b61b2) — 9/25/2009 @ 9:15 am

  21. He did not say it did not appear on their blog, he said it did not appear in the paper.

    Where does the word “paper” appear in Patterico’s post?

    What he said was:

    I guess according to the L.A. Times, Yosi Sergant is not a story now and has not been a story at any point this year:

    This never happened, gentlemen.

    The L.A. Times blogs are part of the L.A. Times. So Patterico is wrong.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:10 am

  22. FUBAR just spoke Troof to Powder! Feel the existential burn, Mr. Frey!

    I see FUBAR hitting those keys with abrupt, triumphant strokes of victory!

    Comment by Eric Blair (0b61b2) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:18 am

  23. Oh good Allah. How mendoucheous can you be? The LA Times is a paper. That you want to expand that to include their online blogs is a metric you created. The rational world knows that there is a fundamental difference between the two.

    Comment by JD (7e3655) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:19 am

  24. Maybe foo bar has a point. Maybe DRJ should have said, “L.A. Times Has Been Silent on Sergant All Year, except for left wing echo chamber blogs that hardly anybody ever reads”.

    Is that better? :)

    Comment by SomeOtherSteve (dd8b9a) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:25 am

  25. JD and SomeOtherSteve:

    Do you remember when Patterico complained about excessive coverage of Michael Jackson’s death? In order to support his case, he included LAT blog posts in his catalog of LAT pieces about Michael Jackson.

    His last sentence in that post (bold added) was:

    Lucky thing your paper isn’t doing that, Tim!

    (He was sarcastically suggesting that Tim Rutten’s own paper was participating in the same excessive coverage Rutten was worried about).

    So when Patterico wants to complain about the LAT giving something too much coverage, he can cite blog posts, but when he wants to complain that the LAT didn’t cover something, I guess blog posts don’t count, according to you. Is that your position?

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:46 am

  26. I am going to go to the library and Þhumb through their copies of the LA Times to see if FUBAR (an ever appropriate name) or Patterico is correct.

    Comment by JD (51c88c) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:07 pm

  27. –So when Patterico wants to complain about the LAT giving something too much coverage, he can cite blog posts, but when he wants to complain that the LAT didn’t cover something, I guess blog posts don’t count, according to you. Is that your position?—

    You seem a bit disingenuous here FooBar, although you are usually pretty fair.
    It is logically consistent to claim that the Times is giving something too much coverage by pointing out they are covering it in both print and on the web while at the same time claiming they are giving another issue insufficient coverage by only covering it in blog posts.

    If your narrow point is that Patterico didn’t specifically name only the print edition this time (although he did use the term ‘paper’ the previous time you mention) then have at it. It’s not much of a point however, not even worth the LAT’s blogs attention probably.

    Comment by Brian B (e9c53b) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:07 pm

  28. It is logically consistent to claim that the Times is giving something too much coverage by pointing out they are covering it in both print and on the web while at the same time claiming they are giving another issue insufficient coverage by only covering it in blog posts.

    Agreed. If Patterico had complained that the LAT gave the Sergant story “insufficient” coverage because he was only mentioned in blog posts, I would not have complained (I would not necessarily have agreed entirely, but it would not merit a complaint).

    Patterico’s update portrays the LAT as giving it no coverage at all, which is just false.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:12 pm

  29. I am going to go to the library and Þhumb through their copies of the LA Times to see if FUBAR (an ever appropriate name) or Patterico is correct.

    JD:

    I’m not sure if you’re serious here, but again, I am not claiming that the blog posts appear in the print edition. I don’t know the answer to that, but they probably don’t, if I had to guess.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:13 pm

  30. The LA Times is a newspaper. Asserting otherwise is mendacious. What page of the paper did this appear on?

    I think FUBAR actually manages to highligh the meta point of this, that the MSM seems hellbent on not covering these things, and you would have to go intentionally seraching for it online to find it, and when you did, you would find it buried in a blog, not even the online version of the paper.

    Comment by JD (51c88c) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:15 pm

  31. Foo Bar – The Obama aministration is illegally requesting that artists recieving taxpayer grants through the NEA produce propaganda works supporting “Dear Leader”‘s policy initiatives.

    That story should have been in the LA Times, on the front page, under a banner Headline in the lagest bold type they could dig up. The fact that it did not appear in the paper, or the papers online news edition but only in an echo chamber blog that almost nobody reads is farce of the highest order.

    Imagine if GWB had requested grantees produce works supporting the war in Iraq. What would have been the reaction from the Times?

    Comment by Have Blue (854a6e) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:22 pm

  32. Thank you, commenter “Google”

    …said same commenter, albeit this time operating under the identity of Poo Far. Nice sockpuppetry there, Einstein.

    Comment by Dmac (a93b13) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:25 pm

  33. …said same commenter, albeit this time operating under the identity of Poo Far. Nice sockpuppetry there, Einstein.

    This is false. Don’t make an allegation like that unless you have proof, which you could not possibly have in this instance.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:32 pm

  34. Is “Foo Bar” committing the Hiltzik manoever?

    Comment by PCD (1d8b6d) — 9/25/2009 @ 12:33 pm

  35. I can see Foo Bar learned hardhitting journalism from LAT.

    Comment by SPQR (8475fc) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:01 pm

  36. Foo Bar wrote

    So when Patterico wants to complain about the LAT giving something too much coverage, he can cite blog posts, but when he wants to complain that the LAT didn’t cover something, I guess blog posts don’t count, according to you. Is that your position?

    Again, maybe you have a point if Pat actually today’s post. However, it was written DRJ. So, go through the archives and find a post where DRJ equates the LA Times blogs (and one written by a staffer if they allow outsiders to compose blogs) with the paper, and I will humbly concede the point to you.
    On the other hand are you trying to posit that DRJ and Pat are one and the same person?

    Comment by SomeOtherSteve (6ced76) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:18 pm

  37. Oops, that should have read “if Pat actually composed today’s post”.

    Comment by SomeOtherSteve (6ced76) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:22 pm

  38. Again, maybe you have a point if Pat actually today’s post. However, it was written DRJ

    You didn’t read the post very carefully. All DRJ did was introduce and excerpt a story about Sergant’s resignation and then write “Another one under the bus”. Then we have this:

    UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I guess according to the L.A. Times, Yosi Sergant is not a story now and has not been a story at any point this year:

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:35 pm

  39. You are right. Point conceded. Oh, the shame that shall befall my house! Wait. It’s the internet. I don’t even really know any of you guys.

    Dang, I don’t really care in that case. :)

    Comment by SomeOtherSteve (c7bad0) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:39 pm

  40. Foo Bar,

    Maybe it’s just me, but the point I understood was that by using the LAT search function you don’t get any results… any at all. It seems that anyone searching for the LAT position at the LAT website on Sargent will have to find back-issues of the print edition. I wondered why any stories, and I believe you when you said you found some using the Google site:search function since I use it often, would not show up using the LAT search function. Is the LAT scrubbing their online records? If so, for what purpose?

    That seemed to be the point to me. You apparently took it another way.

    Comment by Stashiu3 (8cadeb) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:48 pm

  41. FUBAR is not a sock-puppeter. He/she is honestly disagreeable, or should that be disagreeable, but honest?

    Comment by JD (b82a9e) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:54 pm

  42. If the LA Times decided that their blogs are not part of the paper, and they do not even show up in their own search function, why should we allow FUBAR to change that?

    Comment by JD (b82a9e) — 9/25/2009 @ 1:57 pm

  43. Don’t make an allegation like that unless you have proof

    Fair enough – I retract my earlier statement. But you have a habit of showing up here only when matters of parsing words are the subject; and don’t get your panties in a knot when you start quoting someone who uses the name of a company as a moniker. That not only looks suspicious, it’s patently ridiculous.

    Comment by Dmac (b905fa) — 9/25/2009 @ 3:24 pm

  44. I agree with Dmac!

    Comment by Hewlett Packard (b905fa) — 9/25/2009 @ 3:25 pm

  45. The above commenter is obviously brilliant!

    Comment by Dmac (b905fa) — 9/25/2009 @ 3:26 pm

  46. Screw teh google. Dmac rulz !

    Comment by Yahoo (c48dbe) — 9/25/2009 @ 3:34 pm

  47. “What I don’t understand is that Patterico made a very similar error just a few weeks ago when he claimed that the Van Jones Truther petition story hadn’t been mentioned by the LAT until Jones resigned. In fact, it had been mentioned in an LAT blog post.”

    Foo Bar – I would not agree that Patterico made an error on the Van Jones story given the context of his post. You redefined the scope of his post with your comment and he accepted it and updated it with an update. I have not seen any agreement from Patterico or between the two of you on the precedent setting nature of your nitpicking comment about Van Jones, which in fact was in error and was corrected by me. To expect him to adhere to what you believe to be an tour definition of a what contitutes a “paper” for all time, print, electronic editions and blogs without agreement is pure arrogance on your part, but based on your prior turd droppings here, that seems to be the way you roll. That may very well be the way things settle out, but as Katuie Couric would say, you’re not the boss of Patterico or DRJ.

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 4:16 pm

  48. your definition

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 4:17 pm

  49. So Foo Bar, apart from your disengenuous point on blog consistency, don’t you feel that it’s inusual that the print and online versions of the LA Times have given this story no coverage, ignoring the blog? Or is actual commentary above your pay grade?

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 4:20 pm

  50. So Foo Bar, apart from your disengenuous point on blog consistency, don’t you feel that it’s inusual that the print and online versions of the LA Times have given this story no coverage, ignoring the blog? Or is actual commentary above your pay grade?

    I agree that the story should have been covered in the print edition. Given that it was covered on their website, the omission is not outrageous, but it’s less than ideal.

    However, if Patterico is planning to write that the LAT is acting as if “this never happened”, he should first check everything produced by the LAT that a reader can read on the LAT website, including blogs. I showed him how to do that.

    I am well aware that I am not the boss of Patterico or DRJ. I presume that you are well aware that they are free to ignore my comments or even delete them. The fact that they’ve updated the body of their posts multiple times in response to me might suggest to some that my remarks sometimes have merit in their eyes.

    Comment by Foo Bar (f84349) — 9/25/2009 @ 4:47 pm

  51. Hmmm…. I think our friend Foo Bar sounds a mite bit familiar. Folks?

    Comment by Eric Blair (0b61b2) — 9/25/2009 @ 4:58 pm

  52. I think that it is odd/cute/spectial that FUBAR thinks it knows what constitutes the LA Times, even better than the LA Times itself.

    Comment by JD (c48dbe) — 9/25/2009 @ 5:03 pm

  53. “The fact that they’ve updated the body of their posts multiple times in response to me might suggest to some that my remarks sometimes have merit in their eyes.”

    Foo Bar – The fact that you’re as annoying as an STD and perseverate over subatomic points that would not trouble normal people makes you a pest most of the time in my mind, but it’s not my blog. Your behavior in disrupting Patterico’s year end thread to rehash a point that was already a closed matter was inexcusable but par for the course for someone such as yourself who’s goal in life is to pole vault over mouse turds.

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 5:15 pm

  54. I showed him how to do that.

    After reading this pile of cow dung, I retract my earlier retraction. I’d call you a douchebag, but that would be unfair to actual bags of douche.

    Comment by Dmac (b905fa) — 9/25/2009 @ 5:29 pm

  55. Did I say something wrong?

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 10:00 pm

  56. As with the last time he made a similar observation, Foo Bar’s observation is worth an update because it helps show how unserious the editors of the LAT are.

    However, it’s not an “error” and the update is not a “correction.”

    Comment by Patterico (64318f) — 9/25/2009 @ 10:05 pm

  57. Sigh. Now FUBAR will be back to shriek it is, too! Oh my aching head.

    Comment by Eric Blair (184ac1) — 9/25/2009 @ 10:09 pm

  58. Patterico – If I’m a print subscriber to the LA Times, where do I see Yoshi covered?

    Comment by daleyrocks (718861) — 9/25/2009 @ 10:12 pm

  59. Patterico – If I’m a print subscriber to the LA Times, where do I see Yoshi covered?

    Exactly.

    While a blog on a newspaper’s website can be revealing about the mindset of editors (and some staffers) at a paper, the fact remains that the print edition is what influences people. Important stories should appear there, and when they don’t, it shows that there is a problem.

    Comment by Patterico (64318f) — 9/25/2009 @ 10:23 pm

  60. “Given that it was covered on their website, the omission is not outrageous”

    Seems like an admission that not covering this story would be outrageous. Now you’re just haggling over what is coverage.

    Comment by Dustin (0bdb72) — 9/25/2009 @ 11:19 pm

  61. The L.A. Times covering a story in a blog post is like me covering a story by mentioning it in a single blog comment.

    Comment by Patterico (64318f) — 9/26/2009 @ 10:09 am

  62. Important stories should appear there, and when they don’t, it shows that there is a problem.

    Apparently the LAT doesn’t consider it an important story, and apparently prefer no one else consider it important, either.

    Comment by Dana (863a65) — 9/26/2009 @ 10:30 am

  63. [...] When a controversy arose about Truther and Obama appointee Van Jones, the paper dismissed it as “a firestorm that raged almost entirely on conservative talk shows and websites.” Well, sure: the print version of the paper did indeed ignore the controversy until Jones resigned — an indication that it was indeed a legitimate story that the paper had simply refused to cover. The same pattern held with NEA communications director Yosi Sergant: editors hid the controversy from their print readers right up until he resigned. [...]

    Pingback by Patterico's Pontifications » Patterico’s Los Angeles Dog Trainer Year in Review 2009 (e4ab32) — 1/1/2010 @ 10:27 am

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