The LA Times today exposed U.S. military operation that pays Iraqi newspapers to run stories written by "information operations" troops about how wonderful things are going. All together now: Talk about your American-style democracy. What bothers us isn't even that this manipulation of the press runs counter to the whole establishing-a-free-society objective that men and women are dying for -- it's that, as with the rest of the war, it doesn't seem to be working out very well. According to the LAT, one of the advertorials placed by the military was entitled "Iraqis Insist on Living Despite Terrorism." That is what you call your low bar. What were the competing stories? "BREAKING: Suicide Limited to Suicide Bombers." Maybe, "Death Just One of Many Options for Iraqis." I know: "Here, Have a Plastic Turkey on Us." Is it propaganda if it's as depressing as the news?