Propaganda - we like to think that our government doesn't engage in such things, but sadly, there are examples that come either close to or cross over that line:


Apparently, the U.S. government has been paying contractors to write propaganda pieces to be placed in Iraqi newspapers without attribution. Unethical? Article here.

The use of pre-packaged "video news releases" in TV broadcasts without attribution noting the government (and partisan) origin has become more and more problematic. Here is a comprehensive article on the issue to date, complete with journalists expressing disbelief and disavowal, even though they have made use of them.

Media outlets sometimes play "video news releases" produced by the U.S. government. It wouldn't be a problem, except that they air them as news reports without telling the audience that they are essentially government propaganda. Read about it here and here.

Conservative commentator Armstrong Williams was apparently paid by the Bush Administration to hype the No Child Left Behind Act on his TV program and in his newspaper column. This may very well be illegal, and is certainly unethical. Story here.

A second conservative columnist was apparently also paid. Her name is Maggie Gallager, and she was hyping a "marriage initiative". Wow. Read about it here.

OK, now a THIRD has been discovered. Story here.

A Congressional report on the "infoganda" and "payolagate" issues here.

Opinion columnist Frank Rich ties the Williams affair, VNR's, etc. together nicely in this article.

The Social Security Administration has been enlisted to support the Bush overhaul and privitization plan. Employees have been instructed to give the public the Republican party line, rather than honest expert analysis. Read all about it here.

Pentagon office of disinformation formed -- or not? here

The suppression of dissent via disallowing political TV ads is a disturbing new trend. One example here on an ad about lawsuits vs. tort reform. Here is one about a church's ad on tolerance which was also pulled.

See WWII Propaganda posters re-worked for the modern era here. ©2005 Micah Ian Wright