21 Dec 2018

Fergus Falls 1 — Elite International Journalist 0

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Rod Dreher was mightly amused at the American small town’s revenge.

In 2017, the German magazine Spiegel sent a reporter to Fergus Falls, Minn., to write a story about Deep Trumplandia.

Unfortunately for Spiegel, Fergus Falls residents Michele Anderson and Jake Krohn read the story (which is no longer available, for reasons you’ll discover below), and wrote a stunning exposé on all the things he got wrong. “Got wrong” is too benign a characterization. The reporter, Claas Relotius, just made things up. Excerpts from the exposé:

1. The Sleeping Dragon

    “After three and a half hours, the bus bends from the highway to a narrow, sloping street, rolling towards a dark forest that looks like dragons live in it. At the entrance, just before the station, there is a sign with the American stars and stripes banner, which reads: “Welcome to Fergus Falls, home of damn good folks.”

    Fergus Falls is located on the prairie — which means our landscape mostly consists of tall grass and lakes. While we have trees, we do not have any distinct forests in our city limits, and definitely not in the route that the bus Relotius would have taken from the Twin Cities. And sadly, our welcome sign is quite mundane in its greeting.


Spiegel fired the reporter and began investigating just how much stuff he had simply made up.

2 Feedbacks on "Fergus Falls 1 — Elite International Journalist 0"

Fred Z

I must be a bad man because I quite like what Claas Relotius has done.

He has conned the MSM senseless, stolen their underpants and waved them madly about the world, taken their money and hopefully spent it on stuff they hate.

Seattle Sam

One of my relatives had a farm on a lake in Fergus Falls (where I learned to swim and drive tractor). I’m not surprised that the reporter couldn’t find the story that Der Spiegel sent him to get. This was the equivalent of National Review sending someone into a small German town to “report” on Nazi revivals.



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