Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, the US government has poured billions of your tax dollars into the vaccine program. More than $9 billion of your tax dollars were given to vaccine companies for research and over $22 billion of your tax dollars were then used to support vaccine distribution. The feds also shelled out another $10 billion to expand access and $3 billion more to spend on an ad campaign to combat vaccine hesitancy.
The government was originally transparent with their advertising campaign, rubbing it in the faces of taxpayers that their money was going to paying for commercials for billion dollar companies. However, according to documents obtained under a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, we are now learning that this campaign was far more insidious than just commercials.
According to FOIA documents obtained by The Blaze, the current administration paid the whole of corporate media, including the so-called “conservative” outlets, a billion of your tax dollars to carry out a massive campaign to push positive information about the COVID-19 vaccines. This was done through ads, but the same companies also produced positive news reports on the jabs as well.
The propaganda was carried out as part of the “COVID-19 Public Education Campaign,” a “national initiative to increase public confidence in and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines,” was created with the goal of having “trusted messengers and influencers” speak to news organizations to “provide factual, timely information and steps people can take to protect themselves, their families, and their communities.”
In response to a FOIA request by The Blaze media outlet, the Department of Health and Human Services admitted that it spend hundreds of millions of dollars on the purchasing of “advertising from major news networks including ABC, CBS, and NBC, as well as cable TV news stations Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC, legacy media publications including the New York Post, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post, digital media companies like BuzzFeed News and Newsmax, and hundreds of local newspapers and TV stations. These outlets were collectively responsible for publishing countless articles and video segments regarding the vaccine that were nearly uniformly positive about the vaccine in terms of both its efficacy and safety.”
The breach of journalistic integrity in this scheme cannot be overstated. While the average American thought they were consuming “unbiased” media reports, they were actually part of a paid propaganda campaign to convince them to take the vaccine.
As The Blaze points out, “though virtually all of these newsrooms produced stories covering the COVID-19 vaccines, the taxpayer dollars flowing to their companies were not disclosed to audiences in news reports, since common practice dictates that editorial teams operate independently of media advertising departments and news teams felt no need to make the disclosure, as some publications reached for comment explained.”
“Advertisers pay for space to share their messages, as was the case here, and those ads are clearly labeled as such,” explained Shani George, vice president of communications for the Washington Post, in a statement. “The newsroom is completely independent from the advertising department,” she said.
A spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Times gave a similar statement, emphasizing that the “newsroom operates independently from advertising.”
However, that was clearly not the case.
Emerald Robinson, an independent journalist who previously served as the chief White House correspondent for Newsmax (2020-2022) and for One America News (2017-2020), said she was contacted by a whistleblower inside Newsmax who confirmed that Newsmax executives agreed to take the money from Biden’s HHS to push only positive coverage of the new COVID shots.
This was evidenced by the CEO of Newsmax, Chris Ruddy writing an op-ed “applauding Biden for his vaccine efforts.”