Friday, July 17, 2009

Oh Dear, Time For Another Blogger Ethics Panel

The American Conservative Union askedFedExfor a check for $2 million to $3 million in return for the group’s endorsement in a bitter legislative dispute, then flipped and sided with UPS after FedEx refused to pay. For the $2 million plus, ACU offered a range of services that included: “Producing op-eds and articles written by ACU’s ChairmanDavid Keeneand/or other members of the ACU’s board of directors. (Note that Mr. Keene writes a weekly column that appears in The Hill.)” The conservative group’sremarkable demand — black-and-white proof of the longtime Washington practice known as “pay for play” — was contained in a private letter to FedEx , which was provided to POLITICO.

Note, of course, the necessity of media complicity in such shenanigans.

As for this:
The letter exposes the practice by some political interest groups of taking stands not for reasons of pure principle, as their members and supporters might assume, but also in part because a sponsor is paying big money.

We should include readers of our elite media who assume that the outlets don't just exist to launder propaganda. A reporter once suggested - when bloggers ethics was a very important subject - that op-ed contributors were vetted for financial ties. I laughed.