Tom Riley Narcs On Ryan Grim

It all started when The Politico's Ryan Grim called ONDCP's Tom Riley for a quote to include in this story about Bush's attempt to increase funding for ONDCP's counterproductive National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign.

The story itself is definitely worth reading, but this side-column is priceless:

Ryan Grim, who wrote today's story on the anti-drug campaign program of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), previously worked for the Marijuana Policy Project, which lobbies to legalize marijuana. Grim worked at the project from June 2004 until May 2005, a fact that has been on his official bio since he joined Politico.com.

Grim called the ONDCP for comment for his story early Wednesday. Instead of returning Grim's call, Tom Riley, the agency's spokesman, called The Politico's senior publisher and editor, Martin Tolchin, to point out Grim's previous work with the Marijuana Policy Project. He then threatened to complain to Washington Post media columnist Howard Kurtz about a conflict of interest.

The ONDCP did not return Grim's call Wednesday.

This is a rare glimpse into the frustrated mind of a drug warrior scorned. In Riley's world, Ryan Grim's association with drug policy reform is some sort of dark secret; a mental defect that clouds his judgment, rendering him incapable of reasoned analysis. Grim's superiors should be warned, lest he should poison impressionable minds with his mischievous pen.

Riley's McCarthian finger-pointing is typical drug warrior subterfuge, but it's usually done publicly in an effort to discredit contradictory sources. In this case, however, Riley acted surreptitiously in what can only be described as an attempt to undermine an opponent's employment status.

The best part is that Riley obviously believed his ploy would work. That his complaint would provoke amusement and find its way into the paper never entered his mind.

Further hilarity will ensue when Riley tries to rat out those hippies at the GAO.


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Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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