Right Web

Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

Ideas in Action

Please note: IPS Right Web neither represents nor endorses any of the individuals or groups profiled on this site.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Ideas in Action was a weekly TV program produced by the George W. Bush Institute and Grace Creek Media.[1] As of early 2017, the most recent posts on its website were form 2014.  Launched in early 2010, one of its Sunday morning talk show was described as a “weekly series on ideas and their consequences.” Appearing on PBS affiliates as well as on internet channels such as RIGHTNETWORK,[2] the program typically featured prominent conservative academics and political actors commenting on domestic and foreign affairs. Guests included Jeffrey Gedmin, a former AEI scholar and head of Radio Free Europe; Dan Senor, cofounder with William Kristol and Robert Kagan of the Foreign Policy Initiative; AEI’s Thomas Donnelly; Andrew Exum of the Center for a New American Security; former secretary of state George Shultz now based at the Hoover Institution; and former George W. Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson.[3]

Ideas in Action was hosted by James Glassman, founding executive director of the Bush Institute and veteran journalist. As former undersecretary of state for public diplomacy in the George W. Bush administration, he led the “government-wide international strategic communications effort.”[4] Glassman was also a senior fellow at the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He co-authored, with Kevin A. Hassett, the ill-timed 1999 book, Dow 36,000: The New Strategy for Profiting From the Coming Rise in the Stock Market, which erroneously predicted that the stock market was “undervalued” and would continue to rise sharply in ensuing years.[5] Glassman is well known on the political talk show circuit, having hosted TechnoPolitics for PBS, MoneyPolitics for Washington’s ABC affiliate WJLA, and Capital Gang Sunday for CNN.[6]

Ideas in Action combined elements of Glassman’s previous shows and served as an on-air successor to the now-defunct Tech Central Station (TCS). As an internet magazine, TCS was a platform for a number of high profile hawks and neoconservatives, many, of whom played key roles building public support for an aggressive “war on terror” in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. Contributors included Carol Adelman, Ken Adelman, Henry Cooper, Newt Gingrich, Jeane Kirkpatrick, Michael Ledeen, Richard Perle, Donald Rumsfeld, William Schneider Jr., and James Woolsey.

Glassman launched TCS in 2000 as a “virtual think tank,” covering everything from the war in Iraq to Milton Friedman’s views on health care reform. Its mission statement read: ” The collision of technology and public policy has enormous implications for our lives and our future. Tech Central Station is here to help provide the right answers to many of those questions with the news, analysis, research, and commentary you need to understand how technology is changing and shaping our world, and how you can make sense of it all.”[7]

A December 2003 Washington Monthly article about TCS  described it as “journo-lobbying”—a new innovation in lobbying “driven primarily by the influence of industry. … The new game is to dominate the entire intellectual environment in which officials make policy decisions, which means funding everything from think tanks to issue ads to phony grassroots pressure groups.”[8]

According to the Washington Monthly, soon after ExxonMobile was listed as a sponsor, TCS began running articles attacking the Kyoto accord and the science of global warming. After the pharmaceutical lobby PhRMA hired TCS’s then parent company, DCI group (a public affairs firm), TCS columnists opined against legislation that would allow the reimportation of drugs from Canada.

In 2006, TCS was purchased by its then-editor Nick Schulz, becoming TCSDaily.[9] In 2008, Schulz, a former political editor on Fox News, became a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, editing AEI’s in-house magazine The American.[10] In 2010, TCSDaily was being published under the auspices of Ideas in Action.[11]

Share RightWeb

Please note: IPS Right Web neither represents nor endorses any of the individuals or groups profiled on this site.

Sources

[1]Ideas in Action, http://www.ideasinactiontv.com/; Danny Shea, “George W. Bush Institute to Co-Produce Public Television Show ‘Ideas in Action’,” Huffington Post, December 22, 2009.http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/22/george-w-bush-institute-t_n_400777.html.

[2]Ideas in Action, “Ideas in Action with Jim Glassman Debuts on RIGHTNETWORK,” October 13, 2010, http://www.ideasinactiontv.com/ideas/2010/10/ideas-in-action-with-jim-glassman-deb.html.

[5]James K. Glassman and Kevin A. Hassett, Dow 36,000: The New Strategy for Profiting From the Coming Rise in the Stock Market, Crown Business, 1999.

[6]Lisa de Moraes, “Veteran news host Jim Glassman is back,” Washington Post, August 20, 2010, http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/19/AR2010081905865.html.

[7]TechCentralStation.com, http://www.techcentralstation.com/[no longer available].

[8]Nicholas Confessore, “Meet the Press,” Washington Monthly, December 2003.

[9]Nick Schuhlz, “Something Old and Something New,” TCSDaily, September 19, 2006, http://www.ideasinactiontv.com/tcs_daily/2006/09/something-old-something-new-1.html.

[10]AEI, “AEI Scholars & Fellows: Nick Schulz,” http://www.aei.org/scholar/136.

[11]Ideas in Action, “TCSDaily,” http://www.ideasinactiontv.com/tcs_daily/.

From the Wires

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Trumpian new regional order in the Middle East is predicated on strongman rule, disregard for human rights, Sunni primacy over Iran and other Shia centers of power, continued military support for pro-American warring parties regardless of the unlawfulness of such wars, and Israeli hegemony.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

A comparison of U.S. nuclear diplomacy with Iran and the current version with North Korea puts the former in a good light and makes the latter look disappointing. Those with an interest in curbing the dangers of proliferating nuclear weapons should hope that the North Korea picture will improve with time. But whether it does or not, the process has put into perspective how badly mistaken was the Trump administration’s trashing of the Iran nuclear agreement.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Numerous high profile Trump administration officials maintain close ties with anti-Muslim conspiracy theorists. In today’s America, disparaging Islam is acceptable in ways that disparaging other religions is not. Given the continuing well-funded campaigns by the Islamophobes and continuing support from their enablers in the Trump administration, starting with the president himself, it seems unlikely that this trend will be reversed any time soon.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Trump administration’s nuclear proliferation policy is now in meltdown, one which no threat of “steely resolve”—in Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s words—will easily contain. It is hemorrhaging in part because the administration has yet to forge a strategy that consistently and credibly signals a feasible bottom line that includes living with—rather than destroying—regimes it despises or fears. Political leaders on both sides of the aisle must call for a new model that has some reasonable hope of restraining America’s foes and bringing security to its Middle East allies.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Congressional midterm elections are just months away and another presidential election already looms. Who will be the political leader with the courage and presence of mind to declare: “Enough! Stop this madness!” Man or woman, straight or gay, black, brown, or white, that person will deserve the nation’s gratitude and the support of the electorate. Until that occurs, however, the American penchant for war will stretch on toward infinity.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

To bolster the president’s arguments for cutting back immigration, the administration recently released a fear-mongering report about future terrorist threats. Among the potential threats: a Sudanese national who, in 2016, “pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support to ISIS”; an Uzbek who “posted a threat on an Uzbek-language website to kill President Obama in an act of martyrdom on behalf of ISIS”; a Syrian who, in a plea agreement, “admitted that he knew a member of ISIS and that while in Syria he participated in a battle against the Syrian regime, including shooting at others, in coordination with Al Nusrah,” an al-Qaeda offshoot.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The recent appointment of purveyors of anti-Muslim rhetoric to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom exposes the cynical approach Republicans have taken in promoting religious freedom.


RightWeb
share