Thursday, February 10, 2011

Nashville Scene Calls Out Tennessean On Berman Propaganda

Well this should be fun! Our own Nashville Scene has called out The Tennessean for repeatedly running “op-eds” by corporate sockpuppets working for D.C. PR man Rick Berman. The piece includes a nice shout-out to yours truly, too. {blushes}

I’ve written about The Tennessean’s epic fail before, notably here and here. In May 2010 after they ran a column by Berman employee David Martosko, I wrote:
This is now the third time The Tennessean has fallen for Rick Berman’s propaganda game. Back in February they ran an anti-MADD Tennessee Voices column by “Sarah Longwell,” who fronts several of Rick Berman’s phony organizations, including the restaurant industry-funded American Beverage Institute.


Okay, Tennessean. Will the third time be the charm or is there going to be a fourth incident before your Opinion page editors learn how to hit the Google?

Sadly, there was a fourth time: this column by “J. Justin Wilson” against a plastic bag ban ran back in January. Wilson is identified as “Senior Research Analyst at the Center for Consumer Freedom.” For the record, I haven't heard of any serious campaign to ban plastic bags in Nashville. Maybe I missed the story.

Let’s meet young Mr. Wilson, shall we? According to the CREW wesbite Berman Exposed, he’s a busy fellow. In addition to his Center for Consumer Freedom duties Wilson is also:

• Senior Research Analyst, Berman and Company
• Managing Director, Center for Union Facts
• Senior Research Fellow, Employment Policies Institute
• Managing Director, Employee Freedom Action Committee
• Senior Research Analyst, Employment Policies Institute

My, what a lot of hats Mr. Wilson wears! In fact, the only Wilson hat that fits is one: sockpuppet for Rick Berman’s corporate clients.

At this point I have to think The Tennessean is a willing participant in a dirty propaganda game. It’s a game which allows major corporations to present themselves as shiny-sparkly good corporate citizens, while at the same time financing an under the table PR war attacking environmentalists, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the Humane Society of the United States, and other “do-good” organizations which embarrass Corporate America.

Thanks for playing along, Tennessean.