As I have been pointing out for some time now, Jaime Abeytia has become the go to person for politicians looking to control the public perception of issues. Ever since Michiel Noe was chastised by members of the community for his attempt to appoint Abeytia to the Hispanic Cultural Center sub-committee, some of the politicians have been careful to avoid public examples of their connection to Abeytia. Readers have pointed out that they found it interesting that while Peter Svarzbein was advertising his campaign on Abeytia’s blog they noticed that Claudia Ordaz was conspicuously absent. Some of the readers reasoned that Ordaz had distanced herself from Abeytia.
Today I am going to show you how Claudia Ordaz uses Jaime Abeytia as well as how the public is manipulated through his blog.
Let’s be clear for a moment, Jaime Abeytia does not write and everyone listens. It is not as simple as that. Rather, Jaime Abeytia is part of a tool designed to generate buzz and manage a public message. The public does not go to Abeytia’s blog but rather certain media personalities use it as a starting point. Some politicians also use it as a basis for their talking points around their gossip circles. Many of them do not realize that they are being manipulated.
Let me explain how it works.
A politicians needs to generate interest in an issue while framing it in a manner convenient to the politician. Remember, the truth is not important just that the perception that the issue is based on is truthful. Sprinkle enough truth and the rest of the message, however wrong it is, is assumed to be truthful as well. Abeytia’s blog, as well as the other useful idiots, each with a different master, are the vehicles to get the political messages out. From there the message is carried throughout the political circles and sometimes the news media is duped into running with it.
I already showed you how it works with The Texas Tribune lying that Stephanie Townsend Allala was running for office.
Today, I am going to show you a much more recent example and connect some more dots for you, one that happened on Tuesday.
Tuesday morning Jaime Abeytia posted a blog titled “Ordaz Questions Loss of Millions; City Engineer Retires; 3 Vote Rule is Back.” In it, Abeytia lays out an argument that the city has incompetently lost millions in “project funds.” Whether this is true or not I do not know at this time.
What I found interesting about his post is what else he added and what transpired on Tuesday at the city council meeting.
Abeytia posted a screenshot of an email that was addressed to “Mayor and Council” that was sent on July 6 at 4:29pm. July 6 was Monday. That email notified the elected officials that the city engineer, Irene Ramirez was retiring. Ramirez has been overseeing the department that has been involved in the controversial San Jacinto Plaza and Barron Park issues among others.
Somehow, Abeytia received a copy of the email without filing an open records request. Since no news media reported the retirement until Wednesday, I assume no one else was given the same courtesy by a city official.
Abeytia attempts to tie the “abrupt” resignation to Ordaz threatening to put an item on a future city council meeting agenda.
Jaime Abeytia than writes that he “found out something” he didn’t before. Abeytia alleged that the “Mayor Pro Tem can actually delete some items from the agenda unilaterally and behind closed doors.”
In my many years of opining and writing about city council this is the first I had heard of this. As much of a conspiracy theorist that I am, I am sure that if this had been the case I would have known about it years ago.
I didn’t buy it and I just thought it was one of those things that useful idiots love to throw out without verifying the veracity of it. That is until I was watching Tuesday’s city council meeting.
Towards the end of the lengthy discussion on item 15.1, to set the rules and procedures of city council, Claudia Ordaz brought up an issue she wanted to discuss.
She wanted city council to codify that any item deleted from the city council meeting agenda by the mayor pro tempore must include a notification to city council. Ordaz was arguing that she had heard that the mayor pro tempore could delete any item from the meeting agenda unilaterally without notifying anyone else.
It was explained to Ordaz that the city council meeting agenda goes through various draft versions over various days before becoming the official city council meeting agenda for the next meeting. Obviously, the legal department chimes in and then the city manager’s office as well as other departments that may have to participate on the item are allowed to make changes to the draft version. As the process goes along, if it becomes known that a city representative will be absent, then out of courtesy, items in their district are not added until they can be present. It makes perfect sense.
Remember, the key word is “draft” version of the agenda.
During the discussion, Ordaz kept arguing that she felt “uncomfortable” about items being deleted without her knowing about it. When it was explained to her that only “operational items have been deleted” in the past and that the draft agenda is not the official one she reluctantly dropped the matter.
What is important to note here is that the issue of items being deleted did not originate from Jaime Abeytia’s blog but rather by Ordaz. It was clear she did not fully comprehend that the mayor pro tempore cannot delete items without the council knowing about it once the city agenda becomes official. Not only must the agenda be published 72 hours prior to the meeting but also changes to the agenda is done in an open session of the city council meeting.
I realize that some of you are asking how I can assert that the issue derived from Ordaz rather than from Abeytia. Because if you remember, I showed you how Abeytia published a copy of an official email that was intended for the elected officials only. It was an email created late on Monday and Abeytia had to have received it directly from city officials, likely Claudia Ordaz, so he could publish his post the following day.
Tie that into Claudia Ordaz’ confusion about how the agenda items are managed, and you can clearly see that the flow of the information was from Claudia Ordaz, or her surrogate, and not from Abeytia to her.
Why is this important?
Look at what Abeytia is alleging. He is alleging that Ordaz has found serious incompetence at the city that has resulted in millions in losses. He is framing an Ordaz message for public consumption. He uses the resignation of Irene Ramirez to give the message an aura of urgency and a sinister connection.
By breaking the Ramirez resignation, Abeytia is adding a measure of truth to the rest of the message he is constructing. The sinister connection just adds gossip fuel for the politicos and it happily ties Claudia Ordaz as the catalyst to the resignation.
Now that the message has been crafted, it just needs to grow legs so that it can trend through the grapevine and on through the news media.
I have already showed you how Bob Moore soaks up whatever Jaime Abeytia is peddling.
According to a Facebook screen shot that was sent to me earlier in the week, Abeytia counts many news personalities among his Facebook friends. Although I realize that reporters are likely to friend anyone that could be a news story in the future or a news source, they nonetheless can be influenced by carefully placed news items.
The fact that Abeytia broke the news that Irene Ramirez had resigned gives credibility to the message he is designing for Claudia Ordaz. Keep in mind that the message needs some measure of credibility for lazy reporters to run with it. The Texas Tribune has already proven this.
Keep an eye out for future news stories about how Claudia Ordaz found millions wasted by inept city officials and you will be able to draw the connection directly back to Claudia Ordaz through Jaime Abeytia.
Additional Birthday Wishes to Jaime
Apparently, someone was pretty upset about my image connecting politicians to the criminal aka Jaime Abeytia. Yes, I know Jaime is furious. No I am not writing about him, I am writing about the anonymous reader who sent me additional screen shots chastising me for not including them in the original piece. I hope you all notice Jose Rodriguez is an Abeytia groupie as well. Additionally other readers sent me some other screen shots that I am going to include here as well for you enjoyment.