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February 13, 2006
Watch for the tell-tale signs of corruption

$1,600,000,000. That's $1.6 billion dollars, which just happens to be what the Bush Administration spent on PR and advertising over the last 2.5 years.

.pdf file

While I don't doubt that much of it was necessary and legitimate, it doesn't amuse me to see where some of my tax dollars are going.

Like "marriage initiatives."

The public relations and advertising contracts spanned a wide range of issues. Several relate to Administration priorities, including a contract to “provide expert advice and support in the development of several marriage-related research initiatives,” an

Should the government be in the business of buying advertising for this? Because I don't think so.

Why is the Air Force giving away cruises? Who do they give them to? And why are they buying and handing out brand-specific product advertisements?

$10,152 for “Coca-Cola logoed items, including portable radios, victory t-shirts, hats, coolers”;

No, $10,000 isn't much, but why did they need $10k worth of Coke advertising products?

How, precisely, do you spend $15,000,000 (fifteen million dollars) on "individual members of the media"? Just how many columnists and pundits have they bought and paid for, anyhow?


$50 million worth of media spending, on 76 contracts, was not awarded through the competitive bidding process.

I'm sure there's a good reason for that.

The GAO report does not examine trends in spending on public relations and advertising contracts. However, a prior study by the minority staff of the Government Reform Committee found that spending on public relations contracts has risen rapidly under the Bush Administration. That report found that spending on contracts with public relations firms had increased from $39 million in 2000 to $88 million in 2004, an increase of 128%.5

Just as a hint, guys, this is not how you create a smaller government.

Although, strictly speaking I guess all of this is less indicative of corruption than it is of an Administration willing to spend any amount of money to convince the USofA voting public that they haven't been lied into an invasion, led down the garden path of torture by inhumane leaders, or been taken to the cleaners over tax cuts for rich folks and disastrously expensive and inefficient Medicare programs.

Posted by AnneZook at 07:12 PM