Friday, June 8, 2018

Installment 6.8: Evidence vs. Credentials

Brigid Barkley cornered Mick Scerba and interviewed him.

“Why are you feeding the Cali soldiers who tore up your farm?” Brigid asked.

Mick was clearly uncomfortable in the spot light. That can go two ways. It can make you look guilty or it can make you look like 'everyman'.

“We are feeding them because that is what farmers do. We grow food. We feed people.” Mick said.

“But you don't give food away.” Brigid noted.

“No. We can't. If we gave food away today we would not have the resources we need to farm tomorrow.” Mick said.

The first maxim of journalism is to follow the money. “So you are getting paid.” Brigid stated.

“We are getting paid rates commensurate with the prevailing rates.” Mick agreed.

“Where is the money coming from?” Brigid asked.

“The money is being provided by Doctor Akemi Tanii.” Mick said.

“We researched Akemi Tanii and were unable to find any medical doctors named Akemi Tanii registered in Cali. What do you have to say that?” Brigid asked.

Mick formulated his thoughts for a few seconds, seconds that would be edited out of the segment.  This is one way producers skew viewers.  Had the left in the time he was collecting his thoughts it would have looked like he was thinking up lies.

“There are a lot of jurisdictions besides Cali and there are many kinds of doctors who are not 'people' doctors. I don't care if she has Ph.D. In medieval history or math or if she really is a people doctor. She knows how to manage epidemics and she is saving lives.”  Mick said.

“It doesn't bother you that Akemi Tanii might not be a 'people doctor'” Brigid asked, innocently.

“No, that doesn't bother me a bit. Look out there.” he said, sweeping his hand out behind him. Fields stretched to the horizon with hardly a structure on them. “Its not like we are three blocks from San-Fran General or UCLA medical. We don't have choices. I don't have two hundred doctors volunteering to treat patients. I have Dr Tanii and Dr Tanii is saving lives.” Mick said.

“How do you know she is saving lives? What proof do you have?” Brigid asked.

“Have you ever seen an epidemic in an animal, confinement feeding operation? I have. 80% mortality is not uncommon. We have had soldiers die in camp."

"Cali dumped these kids in the middle of the desert with no more support than a punk pitching a garbage bag full of kittens out the window of a speeding car.  Cali left them with no supporting care and nearly no resources." Scerba said.

"Ever since Dr Tanii, and yes, I call her Dr Tanii, showed up the rate of deaths has been slowing down rather than increasing exponentially. If you extrapolate the pre-Dr Tanii trends we would have had 1500 soldiers die in the last 24 hours. Instead, we had less than 300 confirmed deaths and we only expect another fifty in the coming twenty-four hours. That is a miracle.” Mick said.

“What is your greatest need, Mr Scerba?” Brigid asked.

“We need food service people.” Mick said. “These kids are still sick. We need to get more food, better food into them. We aren't set up cook and serve food. We have a screaming need for four-hundred food service people; people who can set up and run a high volume restaurant within hours.  It ain’t fancy food…These kids need foods like stew and grits and spaghetti.”

“Thank-you for your time, Mr Mick Scerba. I am sure you have a lot of work to do so I will let you go, now.” Brigid said.

“So those of you in the listening audience, if you are an unemployed food-service worker there is a job waiting for you just an hour up I-5.” Brigid concluded.

Mick walked around the corner of the barn, hawked and spit. “I hate that kind of stuff.”

Paul said, “You did great. We have a plan. Now we just need to work the plan.”

Next Installment

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