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First, please recommend this diary so others will have an opportunity to see it and tune in.

I wanted to hop on here and let you know that I will be on Air America Radio's Randi Rhodes Show this afternoon at around 5:30pm ET.

Randi has asked me to come on and talk about my announcement from today that the General Accountability Office (GAO) has agreed to investigate possible contracts between various media and public relations entities and seven White House cabinet level departments. Armstrong Williams redux anyone?

Tune in at around 5:30pm ET and then come back here and post your comments to let me know what you think.


P.S. You can listen online at:

Originally posted to Rep Louise Slaughter on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 12:26 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Thanks, Rep. Slaughter.... (none)
    I always stream AAR at work (don't tell anyone!).  Will be off my conference call by then (I hope!).

    Be a patriot! Buy a hybrid vehicle!

    by billlaurelMD on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 12:27:04 PM PDT

  •  Gannon (4.00)
    I hope he is included in this investigation?
  •  Thanks very much (none)
      I'm glad that we can get some independent investigations ... first step ... big step.  On to an independent counsel??

      Thanks again for all your hard work.

  •  Rep. Slaughter (4.00)
    I am reposting a link to Stephen Labaton's NYT piece today on the unraveling of Kenneth Tomlinson's tenure at CPB.  His appointment and efforts smell of the same WH initiative to stack journalism outlets with paid shills for their policies.  The Readers Digest angle in particular set off my alarm.

    Thanks as always for your work, and I'll catch you on the radio later.

    All Best,

    Published: June 21, 2005

    WASHINGTON, June 20 - A researcher retained secretly by the chairman of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, to monitor the "Now" program with Bill Moyers for political objectivity last year, worked for 20 years at a journalism center founded by the American Conservative Union and a conservative columnist, an official at the journalism center said on Monday.

    The decision by the chairman, Kenneth Y. Tomlinson, to retain the researcher, Fred Mann, without the knowledge of the corporation's board, to report on the political leanings of the guests of "Now" is one of several issues under investigation by the corporation's inspector general.


    Until last year, Mr. Mann worked at the National Journalism Center, which for the last few years has been run by the Young America's Foundation. The foundation describes itself on its Web site as "the principal outreach organization of the conservative movement" and as being committed to the ideas of "individual freedom, a strong national defense, free enterprise and traditional values."

    *The Young America's Foundation shares some top officials with its politically active counterpart, Young Americans for Freedom, although the two are separate entities. *

    The National Journalism Center was founded in 1977 by the American Conservative Union and M. Stanton Evans, a syndicated columnist.


    *While Mr. Mann worked at the National Journalism Center, he helped place interns in the Washington bureau of Reader's Digest. *

    *The editor in chief of Reader's Digest at the time was Mr. Tomlinson, * and its top editor in its Washington bureau was a friend of Mr. Tomlinson's, William Schulz. In April, Mr. Tomlinson persuaded the board of the corporation to appoint Mr. Schulz to be one of two ombudsmen to monitor public radio and television for objectivity.

    There was no response on Monday to voice messages and e-mail messages left for Mr. Mann.


    The inspector general at the corporation is now looking at steps taken by Mr. Tomlinson to ensure what he calls greater balance in programming, including his decision to approve $14,170 in payments to Mr. Mann without the knowledge of the corporation's board.

    •  Can you say "zampolit", kiddies? (none)
      I knew you could.
    •  We should make more noise about this (4.00)
      What do you think about doing a diary about this, Mogolori?

      "Whatever they want the answer is no. Now is not the time to fold, now is the time to up the ante." -- Charles Pierce

      by baba durag on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 12:48:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll post what I can find today (4.00)
        as time permits (but thanks for encouragement!).  Here's an article posted today by Michael Winship at the estimable, who identifies Maggie Gallagher (payola recipient) as a graduate of the National Journalism Center.  The entire article and their funding research on the Center is very interesting.

        Michael Winship
        June 21, 2005

        Public Television's Mystery Mann

        In the current controversy over the possible elimination of Federal funding for PBS and National Public Radio, alleged liberal bias in public broadcasting and reports of Republican and White House meddling in the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, one of the hot points has been a study commissioned by CPB Chairman Ken Tomlinson.


        In a June 16 follow-up, Times reporter Stephen Labaton revealed that CPB's inspector general has been investigating $14,700 in payments to an Indiana man named Fred Mann under contracts "which Mr. Tomlinson took the unusual step of signing personally" for the report on the Moyers program.


        Although as of this writing he has yet to return phone calls or e-mail's from me or other journalists, I know that Fred Mann - to put it mildly -- has a history of involvement with conservative politics. There's little information about him to be found via Google or other Internet searches, but a portrait emerges via those with whom he has been associated.


        The National Journalism Center's alumni include Ann Coulter, Wall Street Journal columnist and editorial board member John Fund and Maggie Gallagher, the writer who was paid by the Department of Health and Human Service to perform promotion work for the Bush administration's marriage promotion initiative -- while at the same time extolling it in her column.

        The Center has received funding from Exxon Mobil and Philip Morris as well as the right-wing John M. Olin and Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundations.
        The objective of the Bradley Foundation has been described by the liberal Center for Media and Democracy as "to return the U.S. -- and the world -- to the days before governments began to regulate Big Business, before corporations were forced to make concessions to an organized labor force. In other words, laissez-faire capitalism: capitalism with the gloves off."

    •  Saddening and creepy to see public trusts ... (4.00)
      ... arbitrarily taken over like this. It's like going to your community park one day and finding that a bunch of thugs are rousting people for money and just beat up anyone who asks where they got the authority.

      This RW zealotry is like some awful plague -- anyone who disagrees is the enemy (a liberal, a traitor, a terrorist ... whatever label is convenient) and therefore has no rights or recourse.

  •  thanks (none)
    I never, ever miss Randi's show.  Thanks for the heads up.
  •  I would suggest a title change (none)
    for your looked like to me that Randi Rhodes may be involved with a Payola scandel. Just a thought. btw/ I hope you bring them all down.

    *Can we please have a party when Bolton goes Down?*

    by Chamonix on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 12:51:58 PM PDT

  •  Slaughter for President (4.00)
    I loooooove that woman.

    " admirable evasion of whoremaster man, to lay his goatish disposition to the charge of a star!"

    King Lear

    by Norwell on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 12:58:10 PM PDT

  •  Audit in Iraq-Apartheid security (4.00)
    I heard on Randi Rhodes that mercenaries from South Africa's old Apartheid forces have been involved in Iraq.  I found an article referencing them. Can you look into this, Representative Slaughter?

    Listen all of y'all it's a Sabotage! - Beastie Boys

    by See you out there on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:04:10 PM PDT

  •  I will have it on. (none)

    "In such a world of conflict, a world of victims and executioners, it is the job of thinking people not to be on the side of the executioners." -Albert Camus.

    by BrianL on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:04:19 PM PDT

  •  Rep Slaughter... (none)
    YOU ARE THE BEST!!! Thank you for your hard work and dedication. We love you!!!

    Senators Kerry & Edwards will win. They're seasoned attys. Kerry will pull us out of the H2O like he rescued the guy in Vietnam! I have faith

    by SeasonedHR on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:10:37 PM PDT

  •  I <3 Randi Rhodes (none)
    she is our goddess!  our savior!  our snark!

    SoapBlox Chicago - a New Group Blog on the Politics of Chicago & the Midwest.

    by pacified on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:11:33 PM PDT

  •  Washington Post's mascots (4.00)

    Why would a liberal, Kossack, progressive or Democrat buy the Washington Post?

    by seesdifferent on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:24:39 PM PDT

  •  Can't remember who said it last... (4.00)
    But I would like to officially add my name to the list of those Kossacks calling for a separate section for diaries from elected officials.

    Rage, rage, against the lying of the Right.

    by Maryscott OConnor on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 01:43:03 PM PDT

    •  Good idea. (4.00)
      They should bypass the regular recommendation process.
    •  Concur (none)
      I hope we will always welcome their input, but it is not hard to forsee the future primary election season where 1 out of every three diaries are from dems seeking office (or their campaigns) from across the country looking for eyeballs and donations.

      This in and of itself is a good thing IMO, since they would be reaching out and presumably listening to input, but the crush of diaries would overwelm everything else that goes on here off the mainpage.

      Big Media is hated by the GOP because they sometimes tell the truth. We should hate Big Media for the other 97 percent of the time when they don't.

      by Ugluks Flea on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 02:56:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And I've yet to see if anyone (4.00)
      has followed-up on the potential problem of registering a pseudonym of a candidate and what ID system could be created/used.  I'm not worried about my silly name, but if a public official or candidate makes a post, I would like to have confidence it is coming from her/him (or at least from the staff).

      I am not the first to raise this issue -- I just never saw that it was resolved here or at other left blogs where one is actually allowed to post (you know, that community thing).

      The only force that can overcome an idea and a faith is another and better idea and faith, positively and fearlessly upheld. Dorothy Thompson.

      by Intellectually Curious on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 03:55:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've just been rereading (4.00)
    Phil Agre's article, "What Is Conservatism and What Is Wrong with It?", which makes some strong points about this kind of behavior.

    Conservatism has used a wide variety of methods to destroy reason throughout history. Fortunately, many of these methods, such as the suppression of popular literacy, are incompatible with a modern economy. Once the common people started becoming educated, more sophisticated methods of domination were required. Thus the invention of public relations, which is a kind of rationalized irrationality. The great innovation of conservatism in recent decades has been the systematic reinvention of politics using the technology of public relations.

    The main idea of public relations is the distinction between "messages" and "facts". Messages are the things you want people to believe. A message should be vague enough that it is difficult to refute by rational means. (People in politics refer to messages as "strategies" and people who devise strategies as "strategists". The Democrats have strategists too, and it is not at all clear that they should, but they scarcely compare with the vast public relations machinery of the right.) It is useful to think of each message as a kind of pipeline: a steady stream of facts is selected (or twisted, or fabricated) to fit the message. Contrary facts are of course ignored. The goal is what the professionals call "message repetition". This provides activists with something to do: come up with new facts to fit the conservative authorities' chosen messages. Having become established in this way, messages must also be continually intertwined with one another. This is one job of pundits.

  •  Thank you for letting us know (none)
    I just tuned in.

    Tired of the corporate DLC suck ups?WE'VE GOT DEANS BACK

    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 02:05:27 PM PDT

  •  Representative Slaughter... (4.00)
    Time and again you model behavior befitting an elected public official!  Thank you for that!
  •  Why (none)
    does Rep. Slaughter sound southern?
  •  I feel a change is in the air! (4.00)
    After listening to Rep. Slaughter, I feel people are finally seeing the light.  I have never posted on DKOS because I would get so depressed after reading the diaries.  I would wonder if our country could ever pull out of the Bush Blight, but now I have hope and will start participating again.
    Thanks so much!!
  •  Thank you Louise! (4.00)
    You were great on Randi's Show!  Thank you for making us so proud of you!  
  •  Thank you, Rep. Slaughter! (none)
    It's great to have such a brave voice so close! (I'm in Boehlert's district - hope your influence rubs off on him!)

    Your efforts to get the straight story about the White House use of the media are encouraging.  Could you post the websites you mentioned here?    All I could remember was "Iraq audit," which didn't work.   There was a second one too.

    Also, Randi Rhodes was just talking about the Sensenbrenner/"sexual predator" incident, but she got it wrong - she thought the Democratic amendment he "revised" was about tax breaks for small business.   Sombody needs to set her straight.    Kossacks?

  •  Thank you Louise! (none)
    You also sound just like my Grandmother in your expressions and accent!

    Brings back good memories.  

    Thank you for your absolute forthrightness and courage.  We all stand with you.

  •  Thank you! (none)
    I heard you today on my way home - you were awesome!

    Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups

    by Catriana on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 04:34:58 PM PDT

  •  luv ya louise (none)
    Louise, you are simply wonderful - I appreciate very much ALL you do, for the country and upstate - by the way, do you think there's anyway I can be un-redistriced back into your district?  
    It was great to hear you on the radio now that we have Air America in Rochester.  I love reading your posts on DKos; it means a lot to us.

    "We learn from history that we learn nothing from history." - George Bernard Shaw

    by corrsman on Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 04:40:30 PM PDT

  •  Keep it up! (none)
    Rep. Slaughter, I was so pleased to hear you on Randi's show. Please continue to make frequent and periodic appearances there. You and she are both vrey welcome on my radio waves, and I think that our nation needs to hear you more often.
  •  Randi makes Russert (none)
    look like a beginner.   I have never heard anyone so well researched and documented.  Talk about being prepared...entertaining..informative..Randi is the BEST.  Ed Shultz is an entertainer.  Randi is a journalist.
  •  MP3's of Randi's shows (none)

    Well-behaved women rarely make history - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

    by jaysea on Wed Jun 22, 2005 at 01:15:41 PM PDT

  •  Direct Link to Slaughter's Appearance (none)

    Well-behaved women rarely make history - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

    by jaysea on Wed Jun 22, 2005 at 01:28:30 PM PDT

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