GAO says Drug Czar violated propaganda ban. Why not ask him about it?

Via Loretta at US Marijuana PartyWhite House anti-drug videos violate propaganda ban, GAO says.
Not that this is news to us, of course — the ONDCP is nothing but a propaganda mill that depends on misdirection, misleading, and outright lies.

Videotape footage of people using drugs and interviews with federal officials discouraging their use that was produced by the White House drug control policy office, violate a legal ban on official propaganda because they were presented to the public without any indication they were produced by the government, according to a decision released Thursday by the Government Accountability Office.

GAO, in response to a request from Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., examined a series of “video news releases” prepared by the Office of National Drug Control Policy from 2002 to 2004 to determine whether they violated a legal prohibition on “covert propaganda.” The ban was included in the appropriations legislation that funded ONDCP’s media campaign to lower drug use among American youth.

The videotapes were complete, prepackaged new stories, GAO found. They were sent to media outlets to be used “as news reports, without the need for any production effort,” the agency wrote in its 17-page decision.

ONDCP’s estimates show that the video footage reached more than 22 million households, GAO noted, “without disclosing to any of those viewers – the real audience – that the products they were watching, which ‘reported’ on the activities of a government agency, were actually prepared by that government agency, not by a seemingly independent third party. This is the essence of the ‘covert propaganda’ violation.”

Of course, the Drug Czar’s office claims they’ve done nothing wrong — most likely because they truly believe that they are entitled to use any tactic, including lying to the American people, in order to achieve their aims.
“bullet” White House Drug Czar to Discuss Teenage Drug Use Tomorrow

White House: John Walters, Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, will answer your questions about the 2004 Monitoring the Future study and the decline in teenage drug use Friday at 1:30pm (ET). Submit questions now.

Go ahead and submit a question — of course they’re all screened in advance, so he’s not likely to answer any questions that seem like a criticism. Still, you could ask him what he thinks about lying to teens about drugs.

[Hat tip to David]

Update: I’ve asked my question. Now I just have to wait and see if it gets picked.

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One Response to GAO says Drug Czar violated propaganda ban. Why not ask him about it?

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