Criticism in 'Spin' is a bit out of control

Reporters covering the Reagan White House loved to list his howlers. So when this book claims that George W. Bush's use of pseudo-facts amount to "a new, destructive way of doing business in the White House," seasoned observers may yawn.

Reporters covering the Reagan White House loved to list his howlers. So when this book claims that George W. Bush's use of pseudo-facts amount to "a new, destructive way of doing business in the White House," seasoned observers may yawn.

The authors, founders of spinsanity.com, are right to note the Bush team is advancing the craft of spinning practiced by predecessors from Johnson to Clinton. They also fairly claim that no President was abetted as much by journalists more interested in examining scandals than facts. But the young cyber-journalists go too far when they declare: "The harm Bush has done to our political system is profound and will almost certainly last far beyond his time in office." No, the real sin of Bush and his operatives is gloating over their success in framing national debate with half-truths and deceptive statistics. It's not the spinning that enrages Bush's critics half as much as the smirk behind it. ----- Title All the President's Spin: George W. Bush, the Media, and the Truth Author Ben Fritz, Bryan Keefer, and Brendan Nyhan Publisher Touchstone (August 2004), 352 pages Reviewed by Gene Grabowski, VP, Levick Strategic Comms.

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