Saturday, January 27, 2007

Senior White House Aid Admits Media is Manipulated

It took a courtroom oath to get the skinny on the current White House’s media manipulation. The tactics vary from granting exclusive stories to pitting reporters against each other. The weekend news lag is used to drop dirty stories the administration hopes go away. Cheney's former top press assistant, Cathie Martin described the craft of media manipulation - under oath and in blunter terms than politicians like to hear in public.

The uses of leaks and exclusives. When to let one's name be used and when to hide in anonymity. Which news medium was seen as more susceptible to control and what timing was most propitious. All candidly described. Even the rating of certain journalists as friends to favor and critics to shun - a faint echo of the enemies list drawn up in Richard Nixon's White House more than 30 years ago.

"Fewer people pay attention to it later on Friday," Martin testified. "And in our view, fewer people are paying attention on Saturday, when it's reported."

Plus an official can demand anonymity in return for the favor. "You can give it to them as a senior administration official," she said. "You don't have to say this is coming directly from the White House."

As the White claims it is being transparent, insiders testify otherwise. Why am I not surprised?

“Promoting transparent, accountable governance is a critical component of our freedom agenda.” President Bush

Does that include “transparent” media manipulation, Mr. President? Get Laura to uncross her fingers behind her back before you answer…

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