Paul From Minneapolis

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Tim Sherno's Guerilla Ops

Last Saturday night around 9:45 I drove to the liquor store, meaning in the Minneapolis context I was making a last-minute trip for supplies for the rest of the weekend.

Liquor stores close at ten Friday and Saturday around here, eight on weekdays, and they don’t open at all on Sundays. As a result there are almost no alcoholics in the state. But anyway, that’s what I was doing, driving 10 blocks to the store and listening to the radio. WCCO-AM, Home of the Twins, a not-much-listened-to Saturday night talk show. The host? I forget. The guest? Tim Sherno, a local TV personality. Not a superstar. Co-anchor of a 5 AM show.

Maybe he is a superstar for people who turn the TV on first thing in the wee morning. Farmers? I would have no idea.

Based on memory, this was what I heard in my three-minute window:

Host: (this is the most inexact of my memories, but I guarantee the spirit) Okay, we’re back, and I’d like to talk about the Jeff Guckert- Jeff Gannon story. Where you had a situation where a gay escort from a fake news outlet using a fake name was allowed access to the White House press room and allowed to ask questions of the president. Why hasn’t this become as big a story as someone might think it should be? (His tone increased in concerned disgust as he reached his climax-question.)

Tim Sherno: (long pause) (continuing) Wry smile… (he actually said that)…What do you think? First let me say that this is the most disgusting, sickening, outrageous, sick, disgusting – as low as you can go, this is lower than that – this is the worst thing I have ever seen. But why isn’t it a story? What do you think? Because whatever machine or whatever that put him there has the ability to make sure this doesn’t become a story!

Okay, again, a little inexact. But he did spit out a list of pejoratives, and he did say “as low as you can go, this is lower,” or words to that effect, and he talked about a machine controlling events and news coverage.


Understand, before this my glancing thoughts related to Tim Sherno involved noticing he has a very thin face, as do I, and musing that it must be a hindrance to true superstardom in his field. In short I know Tim’s pain, if anything I’ve felt a connection. So it was a sucker punch, a blind side hit, to realize during an otherwise pleasant chore: Oh my heavens! There goes another one!

Another what? Another somewhat famous media-type person saying whatever the hell he feels like regarding almost anything previous to checking if he knows what he’s talking about.

Another left-leaning person indulging in a little enjoyable psychic wriggle as he dreams and speaks of this administration possessing mysterious semi-demonic powers. It’s like they all grew up shivering delightfully at Christopher Lee or Donald Pleasence and now, isn’t it fun! They're in the White House!


Okay. It’s kind of odd that Guckert/Gannon was granted daily passes for two years or whatever, but that’s about all I can come up with as an actual question, since I – evidently not joined by Tim Sherno – have been paying attention to the details that have crept out regarding the actual working of the White House press room. Is it uncommon? I don’t know. Do I know why it happened? My first guess would be, they liked the guy. He was a conservative so somebody, probably pretty low down, cut him some slack. If that’s a scandal, all hope is lost.

If you care, go right below for a little e-mail exchange I had a couple weeks back with Ron Hutcheson, current president of the White House Correspondents Association. I saw him interviewed on MSNBC and wrote him to make sure I understood his points.

Before that, though, do remind yourself of the conspiracy believed in by Tim Sherno, celebrity:

Although supplied already with non-hostile questioners from various fairly prominent outlets like Fox and what not, the White House’s Incredibly Insidious Media Control Team decides that to really cement that straitjacket on the press, they simply must plant a gay escort using an alias to ask mostly (not entirely) friendly questions no one will pay attention to, until he pisses off the other liberal reporters enough that they can run off and discover within seconds that he is a gay escort using an alias. Then – as a capping stratagem – the clamps come down and the media fails to write about the issue as much as Tim Sherno thinks they should!

On to the exchange.

Update: It’s possible I got this Sherno guy all wrong, and he’s just really gut-level disgusted by the fact that Guckert is gay or, at the very least, has acted quite gay. Maybe his despair derives less from evil administration control stuff and more from how the whole gay thing makes the situation something he can never handle emotionally. Maybe the machine to which he refers is the gay machine. I don’t associate those feelings with Tim Sherno types – urban, thin-faced – but maybe he’s playing to his farmer base to an extent. I doubt it but you never know. If so I sort of apologize or something.