Opinion

WHAT USEFUL PURPOSE DOES THE MSM SERVE?

I’m wrong you say? Then name one! What good does it serve to have a unified, totally politically oriented, group of un-professionals putting out their opinions and lies as news?

Years ago when I was on the streets in New York City and Western NY actually, seeing first hand the news being created, and then perusing the “news” papers and viewing the reports on TV, I and my cohorts at the FBI often said ”What are they talking about?” Any factual commonalities between what we did and what they reported was totally coincidental.

In the 60’s and 70’s, J. Edgar Hoover had a very strict “no comment” policy and to violate that policy meant certain death to your career. In 1973 changes took place, after Hoover, with regards to the news media. A Media Relations position, popped up inside the FBI. These people were Agents, but there were problems. The FBI’s internal structure did not allow for anyone other than the Agent in charge, the SAC, to run anything. He had to allow this Media Agent, to speak for the SAC and that didn’t sit well with most SAC’s.

The same sort of thing happened with the Special Weapons and Tactics Teams…SWAT! It took years for the SWAT concept to be fully implemented. That then paved the way for my NYO good friend DOC, ADIC Danny Coulson, to implement the badly needed, national, FBI Hostage Rescue Team. DOC started the team and did a great job, in my opinion. He tried to bail out the ATF after their absolutely inept decisions, that led to WACO and RUBY RIDGE, two avoidable tragedies, again, my opinion.

But back to the press and the FBI media man: they were so limited that what info they gave was like telling a small part of a big interesting story and leaving out the best part. That missing, critical information, allowed the MSM to ad lib with their “opinions” on the missing info.

This often led to major problems.

Allow me to give you just one small example of what the MSM false reporting does. This is just one of many cases we worked. This one was a major kidnapping with about 100 Agents, NYPD, NYSP, NJSP, planes/trains and automobiles on standby…ready to launch!

A successful Hispanic American owned a steel door manufacturing business, in Brooklyn. His seven-year old son was kidnapped at gunpoint by two or three males and a demand note was sent with phone calls following for a ransom demand. The NYO, along with every police agency you can imagine with fixed wing aircraft and helicopter, were poised to react. The original demand was $10,000. In a kidnapping case, our policy was to let the victim’s family decide whether or not to pay the ransom and in what manner, whether it was real or phony money.

The family responded that they would pay the $10,000. The press learned of the kidnapping by an Agency (I don’t know which one), but someone used the phrase, “successful businessman” regarding the victim’s father. The ransom was raised by the bad guys, in the next few days, to over $100,000 because of the press, but the family could not pay, all because the kidnappers now believed the family was rich. The family took a real chance and said no when it went over the $100K mark …and it worked. They agreed on $50K and the chase was on just like a Hollywood kidnapping movie.

The teams of personnel launched and the surveillance, protection, drop team , communication you name it, rolled into action.  In typical FBI policy, the order was “Don’t screw up, or else.” The FBI was very forgiving?…or is it unforgiving, I can’t remember, this was 40+ years ago!

Doc, my partner, Steve and I were on the ransom drop team, 3 vehicles, with DOC in the trunk to protect the father and the $50K, real cash. Over the course of about 8-10 hours we went from pay phone to pay phone, all over the 5 boroughs and 3 states ending up in Northern NJ with the victim’s father and DOC in the drop car, and Steve and me (the only lawmen remaining of the original 100, with no radio communication, except between ourselves) remembering our specific direct orders: protect DOC and the father, try not to interfere in the ransom pick-up, do not lose the money, if you can recover the boy go for it, try not to get killed, do not ad lib, but, don’t do anything wrong, or else!

Sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it?

We decided to make the drop where we were told. It was over a rail road bridge and Steve would stay with the victim and DOC, who was vulnerable, in the trunk. I would try to cover the pick-up., with DOC hollering “Try to take them alive! Don’t kill them!”

Unbeknownst to us, the money was picked up by two railroad workers immediately, believing it was a drug deal. Two workers on the tracks, working at 3 or 4 am on the tracks… go figure!

The bad guys panicked and dropped off the little boy at a motel in Jersey, with a message that they did not get the money. They simply just gave it up!

After picking up the kidnap victim from FBI Newark at the Holland Tunnel, Steve and I were amazed at the memory and intelligence of this little boy. With the help of his father, who by this time was in the NYO Radio Dispatch, we identified two of the three subjects before we got him back to the office.

The press managed to get a little info from the motel and proceeded to report everything wrong, just making things up. No members of law enforcement were releasing info as we were trying to catch the bad guys and retrieve the ransom money. Why not just report what is known? Why speculate, knowing some people will actually believe the news reports?

Fortunately, today, almost nobody believes the mainstream news media.

Within two days, the NYO, Kidnapping Squad, arrested two former employees of the father, a female co-conspirator and all but a few hundred dollars from two railroad workers, who were not charged.

Since this is about the despicable press I should offer my take on the WDC Press Dinner yesterday. My suggestion would be to close the Whitehouse Press conferences completely. Give the MSM the smallest, non-air conditioned office there is, designate a real reporter from FOX as the Press Pool Reporter, from whom the other MSM can get their info, third hand. For instance, the President to Sarah, Sarah to Hannity, and Hannity to Matt Lauer…

Truthfully, it will make little difference if the MSM is getting the “facts” third hand, since they regularly ignore the truth, omit critical and relevant facts, and report opinion and political views as facts, not to mention outright lies. Third hand will be an improvement to the MSM, and I’m serious!

Hoover’s policy of “No comment” wasn’t such a bad idea after all.


About the author

J. Gary DiLaura

J. Gary DiLaura

J. Gary Dilaura, a 28 year veteran of the FBI, spent his career in Charleston, SC, New York City, and Buffalo, NY. He was active in the FBI’s Violent Crimes Program, finishing his career as Bank Robbery Supervisor. He also worked White Collar Crime and some well known cases including the Oklahoma City Bombing & the Dustin Hoffman, Dog Day Afternoon Bank Robbery. He holds a degree in Engineering, and established and ran the FBI’s Environmental Crimes Program for the Western District of NY. He received numerous Commendations from every FBI Director he worked for. After retiring from the FBI, he became a successful Construction Contractor/Businessman and a Conservative, OpEd Columnist, "The Right Side", for several publications including, the Niagara Falls Reporter and the Ft Myers, Sun bay Paper. Visit his website at therightsidejgarydilaura.com .

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