I wouldn't ordinarily do a cut and paste job but an email I just received is worth sharing on BlueNC for a few reasons. It reinforces that what we do here scratching around in the dirt can have an impact and that we can bring to light issues that would otherwise be overlooked by mainstream media. In recent weeks BlueNC became aware of telemarketing push-polling and misleading robo-calling especially in NC-11. Some of that awareness came via Talkingpointsmemo.com and TPMmuckraker.com. I would like to tip the hat to TPM and to credit Mother Jones for originating the story especially as the original story highlighted the involvement of Texan Bob Perry who also flushed money down the toilet for Charles Taylor:
You might have seen the November 6, 2006 front page story in the New York Times by reporter Christopher Drew ("New Telemarketing Ploy Steers Voters on Republican Path"). It's worth a look, not just because it's an important story, and not just because Mother Jones helped break it about three weeks ago. (More below the fold......)
About ten days before the Times' piece was published, Mother Jones I-Team Investigative Fellow Dan Schulman's October 26 story "Tales of a Pollster" looked at how ccAdvertising, a push poll company funded by Texan Robert Perry, who was also the money behind the Swiftboat attacks on John Kerry in 2004, used automated telemarketing to try to confuse Democratic and undecided voters and get them to stay away from the polls. You can see Schulman's story. Click below
Schulman's story in turn was cited by John Marshall's popular blog, Talkingpointsmemo.com a few days later, when they reported on how "push polling" was hitting campaigns in a half dozen states leading up to this week's elections.
The Times built their push-poll story, in turn, on the Mother Jones and Talkingpointsmemo reporting. Even though it didn't credit either of us, we're happy the New York Times decided to put it on their front page.
But just as importantly, this reveals how "news" gets made these days, and about how Mother Jones and independent media have an impact on the process. Fact is, someone else, Dan Schulman here at Mother Jones, and the staff at Talkingpointsmemo, did the heavy lifting for the Times' story.
Keep it coming people.
Graphic from the original Mother Jones article
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