Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Bachmann: Hey! I Think I Know That Guy!

One of our readers ran a photo of Michele Bachmann through the facial recognition/celebrity look-alike website and sent the results in here. The computer thinks Senator Bachmann looks like Ben Stiller.

I submitted a more feminine looking photo the Senator to the same site and this resulted in two Desperate Housewives and Pamela Anderson. This, of course, is not the “image” the campaign is trying to establish for the Senator—but I guess the moral of the story is that the results all depend on which photo you send in. In other words, this so-called “facial recognition” computer doesn’t know its digital ass from its digital elbow.

Another enormous, expensive waste of our valuable time. But here was the big surprise: while I was looking on La Bachmann’s website for a suitable photo to submit to that “facial genius” computer, I stumbled across this picture:

That’s him! That’s him to the left of Michele there; that looks like the guy I saw videotaping protesters demonstrating against Karl Rove and Bachmann in Stillwater! At least I think that’s him, it sure looks like the mystery man. If you are interested, you can compare the above picture of him with the ones further down this web page.

As you recall: I was present at the demonstration when I saw the guy in the photos below videotaping the protesters from inside the Water Street Inn. When he stepped outside to get better shots of them, I approached him and asked him who he was and whether he was with the Bachmann campaign and why he was taping the demonstrators. He looked like he was with the Bachmann event people (suit and tie; admitted to the building in advance of Rove’s arrival)and he didn’t seem interested in videotaping anything else except images of the demonstrators. He wouldn’t answer any of my questions at the time and it was clear that he didn’t want to speak to me.

So as one of our readers suggested, I called Bachmann campaign headquarters to find out who he was and whether he was indeed associated with the campaign. Other readers had suggested that he was Luke Hellier, a Student for Bachmann now on the campaign payroll.

I asked to speak to “Luke Hellier, please.” The guy who answered the phone said Luke was out of town. I asked if Luke was the guy who was videotaping protesters at the Rove event; the guy on the phone said he didn’t know. I asked him who would know, and he gave me the email address of another campaign staff member, Andy Parrish. So I wrote to Mr. Parrish and asked all about taping the demonstrators, whether it was Luke Hellier doing the videotaping, whether he’d been instructed to do this, etc.

But so far Mr. Parrish hasn’t written me back. Do you think he will ever get back to me about this matter? Luke Hellier hasn't; I emailed him, too.


At 10:21 AM, Blogger Ned Luddington said...

Have you run Luke through the face recogniton web site?

At 11:44 AM, Blogger Avidor said...

I put it through again and she definately looks like this guy.

At 1:03 PM, Anonymous Tim from Woodbury said...


I can confirm that the guy in the above picture is indeed Luke.

I might stop by the Bachmann office on my way home and see if Luke is around.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger Prendergast said...

ned and avidor--you guys are focusing too tightly on this "facial recognition issue," I think. But for all I know, that may be their "plan"--to secretly videotape us all and then run our faces through some master computer in D.C. so they can hold us all to public ridicule by saying we look like Tor Johnson or Bela Lugosi or Mel Gibson or whoever.
avidor--I don't even believe that Tor Johnson is in the computer's celebrity look-alike database. I think you just pasted that Tor thing in there. I will concede that she has the same facial expression as Tor in the photo you used. I will go that far.
Tim from W--good luck on your proposed venture into the heart of darkness. If you are down there and you see La B or Marcus, tell them I said "hi!" But don't scare them; they seem to be scared of everybody and everything (their surveillance of constituents, eg.) Remember that she is a "conceal-and-carry" pup, and that she tends to panic (remember the Scandia thing where she ran screaming out of the ladies' room when two middle-aged women asked her about public education funding.) And please be polite to Luke--if he was the guy videotaping protesters, I'm sure he was only following orders.


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