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  • Government Advertising Itself

    Posted by Shannon Love on June 23rd, 2005 (All posts by )

    So I saw something disturbing on TV last night.

    The Army had bought a commercial to complain about some pending funding cuts in Congress. The Army spokesman complained that the proposed cuts would damage the ability of the Army to fulfill its mission, and he urged all the viewers to contact their elected representatives and tell them not to cut spending for the Army.

    This commercial raised serious questions about the use of public money by a government entity to influence the political process that gives public money to that entity.

    The potential for corruption here should be obvious. Is it right that the military, or any other government entity, should be able to use public money to urge people to further fund the entity? Talk about your feedback loops! If allowed to spread unchecked. government entities would become more focused on spending public money to advertise themselves and thus secure more funding than they would be in fulfilling their stated mission.

    Frankly, I consider it very surprising that more people did not react more strongly when they saw the military using public money to advertise against cuts in its own budget! I expected howls of indignation from leftist quarters if from nowhere else.

    What a minute. Did I say the military?

    Whoops, I meant PBS.

    Yep, PBS, is using your tax dollars to run ads on PBS about how your tax dollars should continue to flow to PBS. PBS is using its position as a tax supported public institution and a government-granted broadcast monopoly to directly try to affect a political decision.

    If this isn’t public corruption I don’t know what is. Where’s the outrage? If the military did something like this people would freak, so why don’t they criticize PBS for abusing its power in this way? Could it have something to do with the fact that PBS is a left-of-center organization? Nah!

     

    6 Responses to “Government Advertising Itself”

    1. Jonathan Says:

      I agree.

    2. Richard Heddleson Says:

      I believe there are laws against this. Any lawyer know for sure?

    3. Lex Says:

      PBS should be privatized. Sell it. Let Soros and Al Franken buy it. It will survive. It has a huge audience. But I resent paying for it.

    4. Norden Says:

      This raises an ethical dilema, PBS and NPR harm real leftist businesses like Air America, by undercutting them on commercials per hour. Then they fail to hold an audience of the size that AA would, undercutting the left as a whole. Should we stop the subsidy and help Al, or should we goose it for a year to drive him under faster?

    5. Dan from Madison Says:

      The very fact that MoveOn.org wants to “save” NPR and PBS should really tell all of us everything we need to know about this taxpayer funded front for the Dems or those even further to the left.

    6. Half Sigma Says:

      I’m outraged by the “war on drugs” advertising. Were it not for all the brainwashing, the prohibition of drugs would have been abolished long ago.