the Clark-Lytle-Geduldig-Cranford memo

Please forward this around.

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The Clark-Lytle-Geduldig-Cranford memo.

A lobbyist firm, Clark-Lytle-Geduldig-Cranford, put together a proposal for the Banking industry to politically destroy the Occupy movement before Occupy could tilt the outcome of the upcoming 2012 elections. 

CLGC, the lobbyist firm, communicated this $850,000 offer to the American Bankers Association in a 4-page memo that someone leaked to the press.  This is a fascinating glimpse into the process by which people with money can subvert the democratic process — for just under a million dollars.

[link to the original CLGC memo at end]

OVERVIEW

Introduction

The memo briefly outlines the problem and the story-so-far, in very delicate, friendly language.  If you don’t know, what happened was that the banking industry knowingly created bad mortgages that homeowners could not possibly afford.

They used these forged financial instruments to show on-paper profit that did not exist, which drove investment and therefore growth.  When the homeowners began to default and lose their homes in record numbers, the scam was uncovered.

With the economy hostage, Uncle Sam felt he had no alternative but to issue a bailout.  Stern American values regarding capitalism, the free market, and fiscal responsibility were canned because these banks were “too big to fail.”

Congress explained that this bailout money would be used to ensure credit to the man on the street.  This would avoid financial gridlock and the resulting economic death spiral.

But in fact, the CEOs that run the banks that power the economy instantly funneled all of that money into the pockets of the super-wealthy.  This was a bad business decision that damaged those companies, and damaged the economy more.  The people of America lost jobs and houses in record numbers.

Despite the fact that this was bad for business, the CEOs that made those decisions were paid million-dollar bonuses (on top of their million dollar salaries). 

The Clark-Lytle-Geduldig-Cranford memo discusses the dangerous political position this places banks in, because the American people are angry enough to put away their Ipods and pay attention to politics — as the Occupy movement shows — and politicians in the last analysis obey their masters, who is us.

The problem, CLGC says, is not just that Democrats are openly discussing actually doing something to satisfy the protesters.  The *real* problem is that the Republicans might abandon banks too, ducking and running for cover.

CLGC says, in effect, the Occupy movement may look like rabble, but in fact they are to be afraid of.  Real democracy is to be afraid of.

You need a plan (CLGC tells the banks).  And this is what we have for you:

* Survey Research
* Message Testing
* Opposition Research (this is great — wait ’til you get this)
* Targeted Social Media Monitoring
* Coalition Planning
* Advertising Creative and Placement Strategy Development

SURVEY RESEARCH

Deliverable – (The CLGC plan is divvied up into “deliverables.”  Hard-hitting, see.  And the expression of the will of the people is what gets hit.)

(And run.)

Deliverable – Poll citizens nationally so they can measure and predict how voting will go.

They’ve also found which states are up for grabs.  A state might be vulnerable in different ways:  a Democratic Senator might be slipping in the polls and up for re-election, it might be a swing state in the Presidential race, or so on.

Targeted states are:  Florida, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Wisconsin, Ohio, North Carolina, Nevada, and New Mexico.

See the original for details.

OPPOSITION RESEARCH

The Occupy movement must be *funded* by someone.  Banks must understand *who* is funding it, so they can tarnish their character.

In other words, if they can make Occupy out to be funded by someone with selfish political intentions, then that implies all the people camping and being pepper-sprayed have been bought.  And that implies it’s not really a people’s movement.

With Americans suddenly looking under rocks for the conspiracy, they’re distracted from the fact that they have real anger about the bailouts (as the memo admits) and no longer see that they actually agree with what the Occupy movement wants:  not handouts, not bailouts, but jobs, a real economy, a square deal, and not banks that lie and cheat and steal from our pockets, and reward the crooked CEOs that benefit the super-wealthy even when it hurts their own business.  An economic and legal system where a man can support himself and his family at minimum wage, and not have that family get torn apart by economic forces.

Deliverable:  They’ll use the opinion polls to find “fact-based negative narratives” on Occupy donors.

In other words, the question is, who has been giving money to your local Occupy group?  Probably you don’t know.  The people who camp don’t even know.  Someone brings food, they eat it.  Someone drops off money, or writes a check — thank you very much, they spend it — on sleeping bags, on food, all that good stuff.

But with a little private-eyeing, those donors can be identified.  And their histories can be investigated.  And the fact that they were audited a couple years ago can be identified.  Even if they cleared the audit — well, you don’t need to publicize *that* part.

So, CLGC says, we’ll find dirt on the guys who gave Occupy groups money.  And that dirt will relate to what our surveys say citizens in that area are worried about.

So this will prey on people’s minds.  And it will distract them from the Wall Street theft.  — Which was really illegal, by the way.  That’s not a metaphor.

TARGETED SOCIAL MEDIA MONITORING

Occupy groups all work via Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and so forth.  These are open platforms, so the people easily can join in.

But that’s a two-edged sword.  For one thing, CLGC says, we can read through all of those messages for you.  We can find out what actions Occupy groups are considering, and what PR angle they’re considering taking.  So you can be prepared.

Also, CLGC continues, we can find the craziest bomb-throwingest anti-American wingnuts who post to those spaces.  Even if they’re immediately deleted or shouted down, we can quote them.  And we own the media, so we can quote them LOUD.

Deliverable.  You’ll be ready, boy.

COALITION PLANNING

See, the problem is you Banks have no credit, CLGC says.  You can’t speak up for yourself.  “A big challenge is to demonstrate that these companies still have political strength and that making them a political target will carry a severe political cost.”

In other words, you boys need to PROVE that if a politician tries to respond to the people and give them what they want — accountability for the Wall St. theft of the bailout money — they will be CRUSHED.  Utterly CRUSHED.

How do you do this when you have no political credit?  Don’t worry.

We’ll find you talking heads to put across our messages — messages along the above lines — and we’ll put them in front of a camera.  We’ll make it happen.  All kinds of different people to deliver our message and organize support.  Deliverable.

ADVERTISING CREATIVE AND PLACEMENT STRATEGY

“The key is to use the information identified through the survey research to develop hard-hitting, compelling creative” — that is, a message, an image, an idea — one that’s *creative* — not necessarily *true* — “that can move numbers, combat [Occupy] messages and provide cover for political figures who defend the industry.  By developing and clearing this creative now it can be ready for immediate deployment immediately — [yes, it says ‘immediate deployment immediately’] — as it becomes necessary.  A strong placement early in a transition to adopt the [Occupy] movement will send a powerful political signal about the risks of carrying that through.”

In other words, they’ll come up with an advertising campaign early, and hold back.  Then as soon as a politician seems to start flirting with maybe *listening* to what protestors want — accountability for Wall Street Bank theft of bailout money — rich people in jail, the money back — they’ll NAIL the guy.

They’ll CRUSH him.  They’ll find some woman who says she did things with him in the back seat of his limo, or he grabbed her, or she — if it’s a woman — used her position to the advantage of her family, or whatever.

That sets an example, and keeps the rest of the Senators, the Congressmen, the candidates — the politicians — in line.

Deliverable.

PRICING

“The cost of the deliverables identified above is $850,000.”

That’s your democracy.

–Deliverable.

PDF of the original CLGF memo:
CLGF-msnbc

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