Monday, May 11, 2009
Ann Althouse and others look at the evidence in support of the Official Story of Air Force One's flyby over lower Manhattan -- that it was to update the publicity photo of the plane -- and are not buying it. Why, for example, would they assign the actual photography to a fighter pilot -- they are very talented people, but it is not as though any maroon can take a good picture -- and then white wash the type of camera that he used? You have to admit, it certainly has the look and feel of a coverup -- there is more evidence in that direction than, say, in support of Bristol having given birth to Trig -- but I admit that I am not courageous enough to take a stand on the theory. The right is not nearly so kind to conspiracy theorists in its own ranks as the "reality-based community."
On the other hand, the released photo is not that good. In the upper right, you can see reflection on the canopy and in the lower right corner is a dark band, also from the canopy. Hardly the best a professional could produce.
A follow up by the real journalists our there seems like a good thing. Some good questions have arisen.
Why were the photos classified as secret?
Who's idea was it to make them secret and why did they do that?
Who's idea was this to do the flight?
Why were the digital images altered to remove information that revealed the information about the camera used for the photo? And, who's idea was that?
who was on the plane?
These seem like fair questions. They raise doubts about the purpose of the flyby and whether that purpose is what it is claimed to be. They raise doubts about the truthfulness senior figures in the administration. If those doubts are in fact misplaced, I should think the administration would be eager to put them to rest by giving convincingly honest answers to these questions.
Why go through all this trouble and waste over 300,000 dollars for a horrible photo that could have been easily and seamlessly created in Photoshop? There are thousands if not millions of shots of the Statue of Liberty and Air Force One from every possible angle so any amateur Photoshop user could put together a better picture than the one that was released.
I can only imagine the backlash if the Obama Administration had photoshopped the picture! The "right" would be all over every released photo like white over rice. Was Obama really in Iraq? Or was it photoshopped? Obama meeting with Mubarak next month? Photoshopped! Tomatoes from Michelle's garden? Photoshopped!
Last week you dedicated reams of *pages* to Miss California's contract. This week it's all about why the Administration didn't photshop the picture of Air Force One. Y'all have way to much time on your hands!
In response to poster Syd. My comment was more a statement on the quality of the picture. But since you want to go there about photoshop, think for a second— was this a picture of the President staring out of a window aboard Air Force One at the Statue of Liberty below. Or was this simply generic photo of Air Force One over the Statue of Liberty? Its a generic nondescript photo. I do cede to you the point of the absolute nit-pickers who would do look to ridicule Obama regardless of the situation. And It would be legitimate to complain and question the ethics of a photo placing the President on Air Force One when he was not. You cant ethically put tomatoes in a garden that weren't there. You can't ethically place the president shaking Mubaraks hand in a photo if he was never in Egypt. But thats not what is going on here.
In a generic stock-photo of the Presidential aircraft flying over any-city USA that could be used by any administration there is no reason not to either Photoshop the image or get a real high quality professional photographic job done. For 300,000 dollars the picture is a disgrace. The artist work or the photography would simply have to be upfront about what was done. If idiots want to nit-pick about that then let them be idiots and nit-pick. Everybody has the right to be stupid.
The digital signature identifying the type of camera that took the picture, which is recorded in all digital pictures by the camera itself, was removed from the picture. As we all learned from Watergate, "It's not the crime; it's the cover-up."
So -- who was in the airplane? Someone knows and sooner or later, someone will tell. Then what, Obama?
Syd ... it's all about the lying around the why, who was onboard. The government just spent over 300 grand on a joy ride. I'd like to know if it was a pizza party for the kids, or had some actual purpose, other than Obama saying F*ck you, I'll do whatever I want, and add a few more hundred grand on the debt, courtesy of our friends in China.
I must respectfully DISAGREE with your comment: " . . . it is not as though any MAROON can take a good picture . . ." We Maroons - a/k/a graduates of The University of Chicago - are all equally capable of taking a good picture. Why, several had actually become famous photo-jounatlista and one is an extremely rich and successful porn photographer.
Given our lockout from the Obama Administration by the Crimson team from Cambridge, Massachusetts; this could be our only venue into demonstrating our superior skill set to our former Hyde Park resident.
The most obvious explanation is that this was a two-fold crisis response drill. In the post 9/11 world all potential threats must be considered including an attack of some kind on Air Force 1 as well as a repeat 9/11 style attack. This is the only thing that could explain the secrecy surrounding the event and the use of the Air Force 1 in that way. If you truly wanted to test crisis response then you would want the scenario to be as real as possible and you certainly would not want to alert anyone to the flight even if it were to create unfortunate panic. In addition you wouldn't want the enemy to witness the drill, to be aware of what future attacks you were anticipating or to find out what precautions you might be taking. Think about it.
I can only imagine the backlash if the Obama Administration had photoshopped the picture!Just digitally watermark it as "composite photo" and nobody will give a damn...particularly if it saved $300,000.