From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
Armstrong Williams: "This happens all the time"

January 11, 2005 8:48 AM

The Armstrong Williams debacle is heating up.

David Corn corners Armstrong Williams and learns "There are others."

Melanie Sloan at CREW just filed 23 FOIA requests to cabinet agencies seeking their contracts with PR firms looking to see if anyone else was Armstronged.

And Laurie Spivak points out that the PR firm behind the controversy, Ketchum, was the same firm who brought out Karen Ryan to shill for Bush's Medicare bill last year.

Williams' show "The Right Side" airs on Jerry Falwell's Liberty Channel. You can see clips here and here.

More from the archive in Propaganda.

Armstrong Williams: "This happens all the time" (01.11.2005)

Next Entry: U.S. gave up searching for WMD in Iraq (01.12.2005)
Previous Entry: Gimme something to believe in (01.10.2005)

Read the 11 comments.

Tom from Madison:

This is exactly the kind of stuff the electorate didn't know about during the 2004 campaign because they were distracted by God, Guns, and Gays issues. Democrats need to focus on getting a coherent message out--framed by the way Progressives want it. Taxpayer money is being handed out to "Pioneers and Rangers" as well as to media shills like Armstrong Williams. An honest characterization of this would be "bribery "and "influence peddling."

Gettng a progressive message out in the current environment is no small task given the size and wealth of the Republican noise machine. That said, Air America and liberal media now exist and are growing. Progressives need to take advantage.

Tue Jan 11 2005 11:31 AM

Paul Stone:

Influence peddling is something else: "The practice of using one's influence with persons in authority to obtain favors or preferential treatment for another, usually in return for payment."

Also, bribery is when you pay off an official, not when the official pays you off.

How about "misappropration of public funds"? How about "embezzling"?

Tue Jan 11 2005 11:49 AM

Tom from Madison:


you are correct. I was not being precise.

My point is ethics has had very little to do with this administration from the start, yet they continue to claim they are the party of moral values. I'd like to see them called on it. It is truly amazing that Karl Rove has sold large a majority of electorage that Bush stands for moral values. There is a TON of evidence to the contrary!

Tue Jan 11 2005 1:24 PM


"Gettng a progressive message out in the current environment is no small task given the size and wealth of the Republican noise machine. That said, Air America and liberal media now exist and are growing."

The liberal media "NOW" exists? What about CNN, ABC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, NY Times, LA Times, and so on, did they just spring fourth from the earth? But if your pinning your hopes on "Air America" you better send a contribution, that turd is circling the bowl.

Tue Jan 11 2005 3:02 PM

Paul Stone:

I guess "embezzling" is the wrong term too. Bush didn't line his pockets with public money. He simply paid a "journalist" (I use that term loosely) for favorable coverage. "Misappropriation of public funds" works for me.

Somehow, I don't see this as an issue which resonates with red state voters, though. They support the president's policies, and they don't care if he used illegal or unethical methods to sell it to the public.

Tue Jan 11 2005 5:00 PM

Paul Stone:

"Covert propaganda" works too.

Tue Jan 11 2005 6:52 PM



Air America ratings in a MAJOR liberal city, in a major liberal state.


This is a direct a matchup at the 2 o'clock hour. You can see where your boy Al lines up, at the bottom.

Now go back to your discussion which you'll accuse me of avoiding in your next comment.

Wed Jan 12 2005 9:59 AM


Jonah Goldberg:

Democrats in the House have been trying to leverage the Williams affair into a broadside against the "propaganda" machine of the White House. They cite these tacky "video news releases" pumped out by the Drug Czar's office and the Department of Health and Human Services as further proof of the Goebbelsization of the White House. (The "VNRs" look like real news broadcasts.) I think these things are awful, but, again, spare me the shock. Not only did the Clinton administration produce some 26 VNRs, it took propaganda to an unprecedented level when they offered incentives (aka bribes) to the entertainment arms of the television networks so that they would deliberately change the storylines of TV dramas to reflect messages consistent with administration drug policies. You didn't know it, but "ER," "Touched by An Angel" and others adulterated their scripts to please what amounted to nanny-state censors.

Wed Jan 12 2005 11:34 AM

Paul Stone:

"This is a direct a matchup at the 2 o'clock hour."

Interesting. Does this imply that a higher percentage of conservatives are unemployed and can tune in during working hours?

Wed Jan 12 2005 11:54 AM

Right Wing Robby:

Ill take that bet any day Paul.

Wed Jan 12 2005 6:32 PM


Is this story distinctly different than Karen Ryan?

If not, why the flap this time?

This is my first comment here, so have to thank you for Outfoxed. Haven't seen it, but have seen plenty of Fox.

Sat Jan 15 2005 1:21 AM

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