Thursday, March 17, 2005


Propoganda is a big word right now. I mean after the Armstrong Williams et al. situation has come the news that the Bush administration has been creating news segments and distributing them to news groups. Andres Martinez comments on this news in a recent column.
As the New York Times reported Sunday, at least 20 federal agencies have been peddling TV news segments to local stations across the country. Viewers have been treated to news reports of happy farmers, happy air travelers and happy beachgoers without ever knowing that these happy but fake news reports were produced by the Agriculture Department, the Transportation Security Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency.
One question I have about this is how many of these are designed to make us feel good about Bush's policies and how many are legitimate PSAs? I mean the Government does have to talk to us on occasion. That said, this certainly doesn't look good. And, as Martinez points out, it doesn't make us look good.
This clumsy branding of George W. Bush's vision of America to Americans will not only backfire at home, it invariably subverts efforts to brand America overseas. Public candor and transparency are supposed to be one of the American brand's distinguishing assets.
Anyway something to think about (which is my favorite way to end an article when I can't think of a zinger).

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