case study connections

The idea of the case study assignments is for you to identify a case that allows you to put a stake in the ground, around which you can then begin to associate things you come across in the news and your own research.  Once you have a case in mind, suddenly the news is full of relevant facts.  For example, the McCarthy case is about, in part, “guilt by association,” and that’s related to the case example I’ve provided in the syllabus of “Swiftboating” (character assasination) of political candidates.  The Republicans are using one scandal to attack groups they argue are connected to it, much to the objection of the target.

Union officials say the Republicans are resorting to guilt through association, saying they have done nothing wrong. They say they have suspended all activities with Acorn pending the results of an investigative audit. Union officials said they were not helping the Census Bureau recruit workers, but were instead encouraging low-income people to be counted and instructing them how to fill out census forms.

“It’s not surprising that a number of politicians are trying to stifle the voices of hard-working” union members “who give as little as $5 a month to make their voices heard,” said Anna Burger, the service employees’ secretary-treasurer. “They are out of ideas. These guys are playing Swift Boat-style politics instead of helping find solutions for the women and men who got up and went to work this morning, worried about their job security, their mortgages or rent, their health care and their kids’ futures.”

If I were doing this case study, based on the Swiftboating phenomenon, this article could be one I would cite in my analysis as an example of current ways it’s being referenced.

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