Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Another Bush Crony is a Crook

Ok, so that probably does not come as a surprise to anyone following the foibles of the current administration. Nor should it come as a shock that this particular screw up is related to the media. Not content to pay Armstrong Williams and others to shill for them on the OpEd pages and airwaves of America, the Bushies thought it would be a fantastic idea to push the Corporation for Public Broadcasting a bit closer to a Faux News approach (apparently us latte drinking liberals don't tune into Faux or Limbaugh and miss out on Dear Leader's daily brainwash).

According to the report from the Inspector General, the former head of the CPB Board (Ken Tomlinson) violated the law and the corporation's own rules. Tomlinson himself pushed CPB to pick up a weekly show of the Wall Street Journal and its conservative editors, which violated the firewall provision that prevents the board from influencing programming decisions. CPB, under Tomlinson, also had contracted with an outside conservative media consultant to monitor what Tomlinson believed to be bias on Bill Moyer's show. Oh, and there was someone still on the White House payroll working for CPB. And (they keep coming) this person and Tomlinson worked with Karl Rove to kill a legislative proposal to fill half the seats on the CPB Board with people who actually have experience in local radio and tv. (These and more info on Tomlinson can be found at Media Matters)

The IG further found that Tomlinson had instituted a political litmus test for the new president of CPB, and that the person ultimately hired was suggested by someone within the White House. Although Tomlinson has stepped down from his post at CPB, he remains the head of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (American government overseas broadcasts) where he is under investigation by the State Department's Inspector General for "misuse of federal money and the use of phantom or unqualified employees."

Is it just me or does the list of phenomenal fuck ups of the Bush administration just keep growing? As Michael Dukakis said, a fish rots from the head down.


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