February 24th, 2011
Lots of folks have been having some good, clean fun diving into the details of the recent phone exchange between Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and Ian Murphy, a blogger posing as Tea Party financier and liberal bogeyman David Koch. The individual excerpts make good reading, especially the part in which Walker talks about potentially tricking Democratic lawmakers into returning to the state, plus when the governor says that he and his team had considered importing “troublemakers” to discredit protesters. Oh, and when “David Koch” promises to “fly [Walker] out to Cali and really show you a good time.” And don’t forget the “hobos in suits” line….
But here’s the internet effect — yes, a published transcript is one thing, but listening to the actual audio is more powerful and ultimately more effective (I love how Scott just plows ahead in the face of “Koch’s” constant and often obscenity-laced interjections). Without the ‘net, Murphy would have needed to catch a reporter’s interest to get the word out, and even if parts of the discussion were published, it’s not likely that the general public would learn the full contents. But since he could publish his own recording of the call online, journalists, other bloggers and citizens in general can listen for themselves and get a real sense of what the governor believes in private. And, they can see just how eager he is to talk with a prominent Republican donor and a key hub in the “vast, right-wing conspiracy,” even as he has no time to talk with Democrats and labor supporters.
In other words, an audio clip is more than just an audio clip in a universe of blogs, YouTube and Facebook: when everyone’s a potential publisher, a simple prank call can be a shot heard ’round the world. Audio of the calls embedded below.