what the f

America, home of brave, land of the free.. except at inaugural balls:

Several reporters covering the balls were surprised to find themselves being monitored by young “escorts,” who followed them from hors d’oeuvres table to dance floor and even to the bathroom.

Their real purpose only occurred to me after I had gone home for the night, when I remembered a brief conversation with a woman I was interviewing. During the middle of our otherwise innocuous encounter, she suddenly noticed the presence of my minder. She stopped for a moment, glanced past me, then resumed talking.

No, the minders weren’t there to monitor me. They were there to let the guests, my sources on inaugural night, know that any complaint, any unguarded statement, any off-the-reservation political observation, might be noted. But maybe someday they’ll be monitoring something more important than an inaugural ball, and the source could be you.

Read the whole article, the story is funnier yet more disturbing than I can show here. What the hell? Why have media passes if you’re not going to let them do their jobs?

(found via chez nadezdha)