By Dave Andrusko
Over the next few days, we should learn more about NARAL’s successful campaign to convince Google to pull ads paid for by Crisis Pregnancy Centers. Yesterday we talked about what could be gleaned from a story in the Washington Post (“Google accepts NARAL’s ‘analysis,’ rejects pro-life CPC ads”). Today we’ll talk about what comes through in NARAL’s victory lap fund-raiser and a story in The Hill newspaper.
For those who missed yesterday’s post, Google accepted NARAL’s assertion that CPC’s were deliberately misleading in their advertising. The Post story intimated that only “some” CPC ads would be affected. In fact, NARAL targeted 79% of CPC ads.
But, in fact, what NARAL is attempting to do is far worse than that. They are trying to parley their success with Google to convince other search engines to bow down to NARAL—and, of course, raise money from their supporters at the same time.
So what have we learned in addition? First, from Julian Hattem of The Hill, “NARAL logged a series of complaints with Google about ads that it claimed were deceptive, and spent the last month urging the company to take action. According to NARAL, more than two-thirds of the ads it passed along to Google were removed.” More than two-thirds!
Second, no backsliding will be tolerated. “NARAL, though, says it will work with Google to make sure that the ads don’t come back,” Hattem writes. “It’s also organizing a thank you note to CEO Larry Page, to ‘support your commitment to ending this manipulation of women making vital health decisions.’”
What else? “Google’s leadership in removing the majority of these ads is a victory for truth in advertising and for the women who have been targeted by a deliberate misinformation campaign by crisis pregnancy centers,” Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said in a statement Monday. “The action taken by Google to address this pressing problem raises the bar for other search engines to monitor and enforce their own advertising policies.”
So we’re clear. NARAL is not content (as if anyone would think they would be) to have Google take “appropriate actions”—which includes (as a Google spokesman told The Hill) “account disablings and blacklists — as quickly as possible.” They want Bing and Yahoo and Ask and AOL Search to squelch CPC advertising as well.
And, of course, no NARAL assault would be complete without hypocrisy and trolling for money. As we reported yesterday, Hogue piously insisted to the Post, “We have no problem with crisis pregnancy centers advertising online; we have no problem with their existing.”
Really? So the laws you get compliant city and county councils to adopt to drive them out of business—laws that are flagrant violations of First Amendment rights—don’t count? Or the bogus “studies” you grind out to “prove” the falsehoods you brought to the table are “true” are incidental?
But on top of all that, Hogue sends out an email with this:
“It won’t be long before CPCs and their supporters go after Google for making this change because deceptive ads are one of the primary ways they lure women into their doors.” (boldface in the original).
Let’s ignore the obvious—that Hogue and NARAL are so wedded to multiple layers of deception they wouldn’t know a truthful statement if it smacked them in the face. Hogue would have her readers believe that CPCs, which charge nothing or next to nothing for their services and are largely run by volunteers, are so powerful that NARAL would be pulverized if Hogue’s supporters don’t fork over even more money.
No wonder President Obama loves NARAL. They are two peas in a pod.
Please join those who are following me on Twitter at twitter.com/daveha. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.