Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Karl Rove's Campaign Against Ignorance

The Bush Administration has been championing education more than we knew. Today’s news is that American ambassadors have been attending seminars to enhance what a White House spokesman describes as “understanding of the political landscape.”

The briefings by Karl Rove's deputies began in early 2001 and included detailed analyses of “critical congressional and gubernatorial races,” according to documents obtained by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Typically, State Department officials were briefed on “the 55 most critical House races for 2002 and the media markets most critical to battleground states for President Bush's reelection fight in 2004.”

Until this Administration, ambassadors sent to represent the U.S. in foreign countries may have been handicapped by total ignorance of our domestic politics.

Rove’s efforts to educate government employees have not been limited to the State Department. Previously, Congress learned that staff members of the General Services Administration, which oversees $56 billion a year of government contracts, received regular power-point lectures on ways to help Republican candidates.

The educational efforts for U.S. Attorneys, about which Rove has been typically modest, are still being studied by two Congressional committees.

Earlier this month, former Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona testified before Congress about White House efforts to keep him abreast of correct information about stem cell research, contraception and second-hand smoke.

When all of this Administration’s educational undertakings are finally revealed, history will undoubtedly judge Karl Rove and his staff to be among the most ardent educators of all time.

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