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    Book News | May 11, 2015

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Trust Us We're Experts: How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future


Trust Us We're Experts: How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future Cover




Spin 101

"The industry must be like the psychiatrist: rationally figuring out how it can help the public put things in perspective, but knowing that dialogue can only begin with the trust on the public's side that says these people are taking my concerns seriously." (Quote from public relations executive James Lindheim in a speech to the British Society of Chemical Industry, pg. 8)

"Put your words in someone else's mouth." (Quote from public relations executive Merrill Rose, pg. 22)

"The best PR ends up looking like news. You never know when a PR agency is being effective; you'll just find your views slowly shifting." (Quote from a public relations executive, pg. 23)

"Just as the invention of language made lying possible, the invention of mass media created newer, more sophisticated, subtle and elaborate techniques of propaganda." (pg. 24)

"Leaders offer the propagandist a means of reaching vast numbers of individuals, for with so many confusing and conflicting ideas competing for the individual's attention, he is forced to look to others for authority." (Quote from "father of public relations" Edward Bernays, pg. 23)

"Spin cannot be a demonstrable lie." (pg. 72)

"Never lie to a reporter." (pg. 72)

"Marketing is a battle of perception, not products. Truth has no bearing on the issue." (Quote by advertising executive Jack Trout, pg. 72)

"The minute you begin to view the public as something that doesn't operate rationally, your job as a publicist or journalist changes. The pivotal moment was when those who provided the public with its intelligence no longer believed the public had any intelligence." (Quote by public relations historian Stuart Ewen, pg. 72)

"A public relations expert needs to speak sweetly and carry a big stick." (pg. 81)

Product Details

Rampton, Sheldon
Stauber, John
Penguin Putnam
New York
Practical Politics
Business Ethics
U.S. Government
Public Relations
Conspiracy & Scandal Investigations
Consumer protection
Industrial publicity
Risk perception
Deceptive advertising.
Public relations consultants.
Endorsements in advertising.
Public relations firms
Political Process - General
Government - U.S. Government
Business ethics -- United States.
Deceptive advertising -- United States.
Politics-United States Politics
Edition Description:
Mass Market
Series Volume:
C 2 KBR/01-10
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
8.32x5.49x.81 in. .75 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

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Business » Advertising
Business » Ethics
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Featured Titles
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture
History and Social Science » Sociology » Media
Reference » Science Reference » General

Trust Us We're Experts: How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future Used Trade Paper
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$15.95 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Penguin Putnam - English 9781585421398 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Trust Us, We're Experts! blows the lid off so-called "third party" experts, hirelings of the corporate elite's who do transnationals' bidding under the guise of independence. Every time you hear "W" say "I want to make policy based on 'sound science,'" remember the only science he is interested in is the science sponsored by the industries who put him in office. If you want proof, read this book. You should also read Toxic Sludge is Good for You and Mad Cow USA by that same pair. While you're at it read anything by Noam Chomsky, Marshall McLuhan or Michel Foucault. Those in power have the ability to frame the debate and as P. T. Barnum said, "nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public." Or was that Ronald Reagan? I forget.

"Review" by , "Trust Us, We're Experts is a brilliant piece of investigative journalism and a powerful vaccine against the stupefying effects of the corporate PR machine. Spread it around!"
"Review" by , "If you want to know how the world wags, and who's wagging it, here's your answer. Read, get mad, roll up your sleeves, and fight back. Rampton and Stauber have issued a wake-up call we can't ignore."
"Review" by , "If you've ever wanted to see a TV spin doctor hog-tied and dragged through the streets, Rampton and Stauber do the next best thing. This book is modern muckraking of the best variety, skewering hype and showing us how to separate real experts from snake oil salesmen and hired corporate know-it-alls."
"Review" by , "Rampton and Stauber have once again exposed the ugly underbelly of corporate America's psychological war on our citizens. Trust Us, We're Experts! shows how giant corporations employ sophisticated psychiatric techniques, unscrupulous public figures, paid biostitutes, junk science, tainted studies and clever PR mercenaries in a relentless effort to market products that routinely kill, maim, deform and poison consumers and our environment."
"Synopsis" by ,
The authors of Toxic Sludge Is Good for You! unmask the sneaky and widespread methods industry uses to influence opinion through bogus experts, doctored data, and manufactured facts.

We count on the experts. We count on them to tell us who to vote for, what to eat, how to raise our children. We watch them on TV, listen to them on the radio, read their opinions in magazine and newspaper articles and letters to the editor. We trust them to tell us what to think, because there’s too much information out there and not enough hours in a day to sort it all out.

We should stop trusting them right this second.

In their new book Trust Us, We’re Experts!: How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future, Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber, authors of Toxic Sludge Is Good For You, offer a chilling exposé on the manufacturing of "independent experts."

Public relations firms and corporations know well how to exploit your trust to get you to buy what they have to sell: Let you hear it from a neutral third party, like a professor or a pediatrician or a soccer mom or a watchdog group. The problem is, these third parties are usually anything but neutral. They have been handpicked, cultivated, and meticulously packaged in order to make you believe what they have to say—preferably in an "objective" format like a news show or a letter to the editor. And in some cases, they have been paid handsomely for their "opinions."

For example:

You think that nonprofit organizations just give away their stamps of approval on products? Bristol-Myers Squibb paid $600,000 to the American Heart Association for the right to display AHA’s name and logo in ads for its cholesterol-lowering drug Pravachol. SmithKline Beecham paid the American Cancer Society $1 million for the right to use its logo in ads for Beecham’s Nicoderm CQ and Nicorette anti-smoking ads.

You think that a study out of a prestigious university is completely unbiased? In 1997, Georgetown University’s Credit Research Center issued a study which concluded that many debtors are using bankruptcy as an excuse to wriggle out of their obligations to creditors. Former U.S. Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen cited the study in a Washington Times column and advocated for changes in federal law to make it harder for consumers to file for bankruptcy relief. What Bentsen failed to mention was that the Credit Research Center is funded in its entirety by credit card companies, banks, retailers, and others in the credit industry; that the study itself was produced with a $100,000 grant from VISA USA, Inc. and MasterCard International; and that Bentsen himself had been hired to work as a credit-industry lobbyist.

You think that all grassroots organizations are truly grassroots? In 1993, a group called Mothers Opposing Pollution (MOP) appeared, calling itself "the largest women’s environmental group in Australia, with thousands of supporters across the country." Their cause: A campaign against plastic milk bottles. It turned out that the group’s spokesperson, Alana Maloney, was in truth a woman named Janet Rundle, the business partner of a man who did P.R. for the Association of Liquidpaperboard Carton Manufacturers—the makers of paper milk cartons.

You think that if a scientist says so, it must be true? In the early 1990s, tobacco companies secretly paid thirteen scientists a total of $156,000 to write a few letters to influential medical journals. One biostatistician received $10,000 for writing a single, eight-paragraph letter that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. A cancer researcher received $20,137 for writing four letters and an opinion piece to the Lancet, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, and The Wall Street Journal.

Rampton and Sta...

"Synopsis" by , The book that unmasks the sneaky and widespread methods industry uses to influence opinion through bogus experts, doctored data, and manufactured facts.

"Finally a long-overdue exposé of the shenanigans and subterfuge that lie behind the making of experts in America." (Jeremy Rifkin)

"If you want to know how the world wags, and who's wagging it, here's your answer." (Bill Moyers)

"Meticulously researched . . . Rampton and Stauber's documentation of PR campaigns proves that they are the real 'experts.' " (Brill's Content) AUTHOBIO: John Stauber is the founder and director of the Center for Media & Democracy. He and Sheldon Rampton write and edit the quarterly PR Watch: Public Interest Reporting on the PR/Public Affairs Industry.

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