Thursday, July 07, 2005

Republican-Friendly Lobbyists Organize "Non-Partisan" Iraqi "Truth Tour." Coming to a Conservative Media Outlet Near You.

You may not have heard of Move America Forward, but they're coming soon to a radio station near you.

The Sacramento-based "non-partisan" organization is the brainchild of a Republican-friendly lobbying firm, Russo Marsh & Rogers. It is undertaking the Orwellian-titled "Truth Tour," which starting July 11, in its very non-partisan way, will bring conservative talk radio hosts to broadcast from Baghdad.

How non-partisan is this group? Here's a teaser on its website: "Tired of the constant bashing of America from the shamelessly liberal media and left-wing politicians?"

Yes, clearly this is a non-partisan group. No political agenda here ...

***

According to the Move America Forward website, the goal of the organizatoin is to reach the troops and find "the positive developments and successes they are achieving. This is the good news that the old-line liberal news media won't tell you about."


There's nothing wrong with positive stories. And, although Move America Forward won't admit it, the mainstream media has written or televised lots of stories about the creation of an Iraqi government, the transfer of power to the fledgling democracy, the U.S.-led reconstruction efforts, and the gains by our troops in fighting the insurgency. What's more, the mainstream media has presented interview after interview with Bush Administration officials, including President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, during which they have spoken at length about the positive gains in Iraq.

But there's a difference between reporting positive stories and ignoring "negative" stories. The Iraq War, and the greater "war on terror" can't be printed and televised like some sort of shampoo advertisement. The news media is supposed to report news -- not Bush propaganda.

Is it anti-American to report U.S. casualties? Insurgent bombings? Waste and fraud by U.S. contractors? Terrorist attacks against innocent Iraqis? Abu Ghraib?

If you read the Move America Forward website, the answer is clearly "yes." To this non-partisan group, the problem with the "liberal" media is that it doesn't follow the Bush Administration's story line often enough.

***

Take a look at the quotes from those involved with Move America Forward, and it's very clear that in their alternative universe, non-partisan means "in complete agreement with the official Bush propaganda lines."

Let's take a look at some of the non-partisan things said on the Move America Forward website, and catch all the conservative spin words along the way.

"(I)t seems that it makes a better news story to report only on the difficulties and challenges our troops face," says Move America Forward co-chair Howard Kaloogian.

For the uninitiated, that's code for a common theme among conservative talk radio hosts: that "liberals" hate America so much that they want to see the troops fail, and that the "liberal" news media is a willing accomplice to this dastardly plan.

Conservative radio host Mark Williams says: "It's important that we show our fighting men and women as well as the Iraqis that they have our support -- despite what they see on CNN."

Yes, dastardly CNN. How wrong they were to report U.S. casualties, insurgent bombings, the wrongdoings at Abu Ghraib and other news stories. Why don't they tout the Bush-friendly storyline?

"With the recent onslaught by liberals that Guantanamo Bay is a "gulag," that our military is akin to 'Nazis' and America is the "terrorist" nation, the war of our generation hangs in the balance," said Lt. Col. Buzz Patterson, a Move America Forward board member and conservative radio host.

The "onslaught," of course, was a single June 14 statement on the Senate floor by Dick Durbin (D-IL), in which he quoted from an FBI agent's report on the deplorable conditions at the Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba, then said: "'If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags or some mad regime -- Pol Pot or others -- that had no concern for human beings."

Patterson, using conservative code, wants people to think that all liberals believe that our troops are Nazis. But Durbin was in fact criticized by both left and right, and later apologized.

I wonder whether Patterson had a similar reaction after Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) compared Democrats to Nazis, or after Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) compared stem cell research to Nazi science. Because that's what a non-partisan would do.

3 Comments:

Blogger The Bulldog Manifesto said...

This is just laughable. These people wouldn't know "non-partisan" if it was defined in the bible in clear terms.

Somewhere along the line, did they just stop teaching history to people? Have people forgotten Joseph Goebels and the Nazi propoganda machine? Have they forgotten Pravda? Have they forgotten.....Fox News?

4:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You do realize that Sen. Durbin was not the only person making the gulag analogy at this time. I do recall that Amnesty International was making the same comparison right around the same time period.

7:28 AM  
Anonymous joe said...

That may be, but Patterson is making a clear reference to Durbin's Senate floor speech.

10:20 AM  

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