Right Wing

Their Middle Name Is Accountability

The Government Accountability Office "said yesterday that they will investigate whether the Department of Health and Human Services violated that law by awarding a $21,500 contract to commentator and marriage advocate Maggie Gallagher." The GAO is currently looking into the legality of similar payments from the Dep


The Fix Behind Fixing Social Security

In late February, deputy White House chief of staff Karl Rove, National Economics Council director Al Hubbard, and Barry Jackson, a special assistant to the president who is handling Social Security reform, met with administration-friendly lobbyists for a "rah-rah" cheerleading session on Social Security privatization. According to The Hill, representatives from the conservative 60 Plus Association, the business funded Coalition for the Modernization and Protection of America's Social Security(COMPASS), America’s Community Bankers, the National Retail Federation, the Mortgage Bankers Association and the Business Roundtable heard the trio reiterate George W. Bush's commitment to "reform" Social Security. "Karl Rove talked about its importance to the president's agenda, and Al Hubbard talked about its importance to the economy," a spokesperson from the Roundtable told Bloomberg News.

FreedomWorks Hard for the Money

Speaking as the co-chair of FreedomWorks on CNBC last December, Dick Armey "spoke glowingly of 'Rx Outreach,' a national mail order program for low-income people that had just been launched by Express Scripts." FreedomWorks was "working with Express Scripts' public relations firm," Fleishman-Hillard, at the time, and "issued a press release praising


You Don't Say

Communications professor Nancy Snow deconstructs GOP pollster Frank Luntz's memo titled "The 14 Words Never to Use." Luntz writes, "Effectively communicating the New American Lexicon requires you to STOP saying words and phrases that undermine your ability to educate the American people." Included on the blacklist are "privatization" ("it evokes images


Trying to Spin Themselves Out of a Job?

More than 4,000 pages of "documents relating to the communications strategy of the Social Security Administration," reveal that the SSA "has markedly changed its communications to the public over the last four years," reports the Democratic staff of the U.S. House Committee on Government Reform.


Exposing the Echo Chamber Behind Social Security Privatization

The Bush administration ventriloquists are out in full force these days, breathlessly hyping "Personal Retirement Accounts" as a way to save Social Security by destroying it. For the average voter, getting a handle on what the Bush administration is proposing to do to Social Security is quite a challenge. The dozens of bobbing heads and clicking fingers, holding forth on cable news programming and the Internet is enough to make anyone's head spin.

A Swift Kick in the Family Retirement Plan

The industry-funded lobbying group USANext "says it plans to spend as much as $10 million on commercials and other tactics assailing AARP, the powerhouse lobby opposing [Social Security] private investment accounts." To oversee the campaign, USANext hired Chris LaCivita, recently of the


"Jeff Gannon's" Incredible Access

"James Guckert's mysterious career as a White House correspondent for Talon News just took another strange twist," writes Eric Boehlert. "And once again, the newest revelation raises the central question: Who broke the rules on Guckert's behalf to give him access to the White House?


Gannon Quits After Blogger Inquiry

"The Talon News correspondent at the center of a scandal over his White House press credentials quit last night amid a growing online investigation into his history, including allegations of involvement with several websites appearing to support gay pornography and promote male prostitution," reports Timothy Karr.



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