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MEDIA WATCH: Rahm Photo Op King holiday publicity stunt doesn't even need reporters! — and you don't even have to send out a photographer!

It came out as a press release, part of the onslaught of them (on average, more then one per day) from Rahm Emanuel's personal publicity machine since Mayor One Percent was sworn in in May 2011. Only this time, it had pictures with it, so the message must have been: Just continue pumping the "Rahmmage" (the "Rahm Image") — and you don't even have to pay a union photographer to do the "art" for your story. The government will supply that, too, just like in Kasakstan.

One of two publicity stunt photographs distributed by the press office of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Martin Luther King Day. This one was supposed to be captioned "Photo #1 Caption: Mayor Emanuel jokes and paints with Charise Smiley while working with volunteers to brighten a community room in the North Lawndale YMCA as part of a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day service project. Photo credit: Brooke Collins, City of Chicago" according to the press release which came out on January 16, 2011 from the Mayor's Press Office.Just to add to the propaganda part, in addition to painting the Lawndale YMCA, Rahm also went to the "Powerhouse High School" (a charter school that's been flailing and failing since it was opened by the latest Ford heir and Mayor Daley seven years ago) and the "Bethune School of Excellence" (one of the neighborhood public schools that was destroyed by turnaround and given to the private "Academy for Urban School Leadership" (AUSL) three years ago. So it editors simply recycled the Rahmstuff, the cheap publicity stunt yielded a "threefer" for the mayor: Publicity for him (with his sleeves rolled up and wearing a designer work shirt; publicity for a charter school (that CPS won't be featuring any time soon with real questions); and more publicity for AUSL.

All in memory of "service" and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Here is precisely what the City Of Chicago sent out to the media on Martin Luther King Day, while Mayor Emanuel's school myrmidons were preparing to destroy another dozen or more African American schools.

Mayor Emanuel Joins Over 700 Volunteers to Honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Through Service Projects Across the City This morning, Mayor Emanuel joined more than 200 volunteers from City Year Chicago (CYC) and One Good Deed Chicago (OGD) to help give the North Lawndale YMCA at 3449 W. Arthington a fresh coat of paint to brighten the activity rooms. Among the volunteers were City employees, students from Johnson College Prep and cast members from The Goodman Theatre production of Race, “taking on” the holiday instead of taking the day off.

In total, over 700 Chicagoans volunteered at three sites coordinated by CYC and OGD. The groups painted and cleaned at the YMCA, the Henry Ford Powerhouse High School and Bethune School of Excellence.

Rahm's second publicity stunt photograph shows Chicago's Millionaire Mayor on his knees working to improve the city's black community while a fifth grade child works alongside him. This photograph, distributed on January 16, 2012, we supposed to have the following caption: Photo #2 Caption: Fifth-grader Jaden Smiley supervises Mayor Emanuel's painting job at the North Lawndale YMCA. Photo credit: Brooke Collins, City of Chicago. Substance doesn't know whether Chicago's mayor is proposing closing down the city's remaining corporate media and just providing all the news that fits directly to the public, but the day after Rahm's publicity stunt in honor of Dr. King, the Chicago Tribune announced that it is doing another "newsroom buyout," so there will be even fewer reporters and photographers to cover the actual news and ask questions in Chicago. For opportunities to volunteer throughout the year, log onto OneGoodDeedChicago.org, the City’s one-stop shop for Chicagoans that includes a volunteer-matching page and ideas for how people across the city can get and stay involved with their communities.

Photo #1 Caption: Mayor Emanuel jokes and paints with Charise Smiley while working with volunteers to brighten a community room in the North Lawndale YMCA as part of a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day service project. Photo credit: Brooke Collins, City of Chicago

Photo #2 Caption: Fifth-grader Jaden Smiley supervises Mayor Emanuel's painting job at the North Lawndale YMCA. Photo credit: Brooke Collins, City of Chicago



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