Yesterday, Condi was on the ground in Alabama kicking off the Bush/Rove PR blitz to counterspin the Katrina meltdown (and pin it on local Democrats).
Lending an assist, the caption of the AFP photo above (taken in July, but featured on YahooNews yesterday), stated that Condi "dismissed claims black people were discriminated against in hurricane-devastated New Orleans." (I should note: AFP is the photo agency that was also at the center of the biased "looting caption scandal" that flared last week.)
Obviously, the photo establishes her credentials as someone who can speak for the blacks of New Orleans, doesn’t it?
If you’re liberal, there are superficial ways of spinning this image to achieve a more palatable effect. For example, you could say that Rice has been largely invisible on matters of race, or that her political instincts have been mostly "in the dark."
However, by portraying Condi as a black icon, the photo blatantly and viscerally serves to burnish the administration’s "black identity." As such, it subliminally aids Bush as he launches a major push to repair a major credibility gap opened up in his ongoing mission to for increase African-American support.
But back to the real world.
It’s easy to gather the cameras around on (newsmaker) Sunday and sex it up with white boys like councilman Henry Barker of Bayou La Batre, Alabama. (Notice the big ABC logo to the left of Hank’s right arm.) But where was Condi (who, we are now being reminded, has deep roots in the Gulf Coast) while her brothers and sisters were dying in the streets?
Oh yes, she was shoe shopping in New York and having a side-splitting time attending Spamalot.
By the way, if you happened to miss this little item from just over a week ago, Diddy did an impersonation of Rice at the MTV
Video Music Awards. Certainly, the timing of the spoof — which
happened to coincided with Rice’s heavy handed and potentially
disastrous bungling of the Iraq constitution process –couldn’t have
been more appropriate.
I thought Diddy visually drove the point home with the white jacket and
black trim. If you pause to compare, it looks an awful lot like what
Condi had on during her last State Department Iraqi constitution
(Revised: 9/5/05 2:08 pm PST)
(image 1: AFP/File/Mladen Antonov. July
2005. Posted Sunday September 4, 2005 at YahooNews. image 2: AP/Rob
Carr. Bayou La Batre, Alabama. Sunday Sept. 4, 2005 at YahooNews. image
3: REUTERS/Mike Blake. ‘Con-Diddy-Leezza Rice’ spoof. 2005 MTV Video
Music Awards. Miami. August 28, 2005 at YahooNews. image 4: AP/Haraz N.
Ghanbari. Department of State, Washington. Aug. 15, 2005. At YahooNews.)