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Fri., Oct. 7, 2011

Memo traces politics

If you want to know how the current political condition got to be the way it is, Google the Powell Memo.

In the late 1960s, the U.S. was getting quite anti-business, pro-environment and much more progressive. The directors of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce asked its staff attorney – the soon-to-be U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell – to draw up a plan to counteract this breakout of democracy.

Billions of dollars have been spent since the early 1970s to implement Powell’s recommendations without anything like a competing outline from the progressive side. No conspiracy here. It has just been the wealthy and the big corporations massively investing in their self-interest to create foundations, publications, mass media, professorships, schools (including universities), training conferences, booking agencies and nonprofit organizations to spread the pro-business/conservative message.

In addition, large investments were made in political organizations, lobbying firms and writers to create a wealth of persuasive information/propaganda that is the heart of the “public relations” process.

And it has worked. Their take on what corporate dictatorships should be able to do is almost conventional wisdom now.

Bart Haggin


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