Think tank researchers are often cited by news outlets to add context and analysis to a news story. They are often portrayed as objective or nonpartisan observers (Extra!, 5/98), and as Ken Silverstein recently explained in the Nation (5/21/13), that appearance can be quite valuable to corporate donors: Nowadays, many Washington think tanks effectively serve as unregistered lobbyists for corporate donors, and companies strategically contribute to them just as they hire a PR or lobby shop or make campaign donations…. “If you’re a lobbyist, whatever you say is heavily discounted,” says Kathleen Clark, a law professor at Washington University and …
Think tanks are important institutions that provide information and analysis to both policy-makers and the public. But when they court donations, it can become unclear whether that analysis is tainted by donor agendas.
While supporting the president and almost exclusively attacking the GOP and the Tea Party, Al Sharpton shields the president from accountability not only as a TV host, but as a representative of black America.
Blameless Factory Owners, Advice for Obama, Defiling Mass Media
The April edition of Public Radio International’s monthly program America Abroad Media, “Global Energy and Innovations,” was essentially an infomercial for the natural gas industry and fracking, under the guise of news.
A true re-examination would ask: What is it about media institutions that makes them so willing to write off millions of mainly black children?