Wednesday, February 02, 2005

bush betta have my money

the story of conservative pundits being paid shills for the bush administration is now apparently old hat, hardly worth reporting. hence i didn't discover until now that a third paid-off pundit, michael mcmanus, has been outed, even though the story broke a week ago. mcmanus was paid $10k by health & human services (the same dept that bought maggie gallagher) to promote the bush agenda on marriage, then failed to disclose this when he later wrote about the marriage initiative in his columns.

meanwhile maggie gallagher (shill #2) scrambles to save her good name. she doesn't see any connection between her case and armstrong williams, & is demanding corrections and retractions galore. williams was paid explicitly to pimp bush policies, while gallagher insists she was not (it just worked out that way). yes, there's a subtle distinction there that she's right to point out, but she still failed to disclose her partiality, & thus their stories are fundamentally quite similar.

as usual, sheldon demonstrates that prwatch was on top of this story three years ago & discussed a website called omega list (since expunged) that made selling out to a sponsor as easy as point & click:

On a section of the website that has subsequently been removed, Omega List was quite straightforward about the fact that it pays conservative commentators to endorse clients and their causes. A series of web pages featured conservative radio show host Blanquita Cullum explaining exactly how the system works and how other radio hosts could get in on the gravy. "You do what you do best!" she said. "Get on the air and talk to your listeners! Drive them to your website by conducting a daily survey or a contest on the topic of your choosing." Eberle's "polling wizard" software, installed on the site, would then capture the names of respondents so that they could be hit up for money. "What happens next is a cakewalk," Cullum continued. "Omega will call you with an opportunity to send an endorsement e-mail to your list . . . and receive a royalty for lending your name to a cause, organization or product you believe in. . . . Omega gives you their specialized software absolutely FREE and presents you with an opportunity to earn an extra $25,000 or more annually."

yes, it's just that simple. you too can make as much as $25k/yr just by violating journalistic ethics!

one man who was not getting paid for pimping product is russel christoff. he's the man whose handsome mug has graced jars of taster's choice instant coffee for years. way back in '86, christoff did a photo shoot for nestle, but thought nothing came of it since he was never contacted again.

then one he was shoppin' for some food & up through the ground came his bubbling outrage at seeing his face on a jar of black gold... coffee, that is.

a los angeles court has awarded him $15.6 million in compensation the unauthorized use of his likeness on countless cans of product over several years in at least seven markets (USA, mexico, south korea, japan, israel, kuwait, and canada).

of course, nestle plans to appeal, so christoff still has not been paid and will not be anytime soon.

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