Political Advertising: New media trends and do attack ads work?
I just got back from a working trip to San Francisco and British Columbia. I was blessed with sunny (but cool) weather, but caught up with family and friends and it was all wonderful[in spite of the anti-customer attitudes exhibited by certain cable car brakemen]. A relaxed outdoor lunch in San Francisco's Union Square was interrupted by a megaphone-shouting group of protesters against the U.S. involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. Signs that read "U.S. baby killers out....". I felt like suggesting they add the phrase "Taliban in" but they probably wouldn't have got the sarcasm. Why can't the protesters do an honest job of raising concerns rather than indulge in such a dishonest harangue? They just do the anti-war side a disservice.
In case you were too busy enjoying your Sunday/Thanksgiving/Columbus Day dinner with your family, and missed my appearance on October 11th's broadcast of CPAC's Nik Nanos Report, here it is (about five minutes in):
Has Rush Limbaugh Jumped the Shark?
I admit to having long enjoyed Rush - in admittedly small doses - particularly as he has skewered the MSM (mainstream media) and various elite political targets over the years. However, Rush may well have crossed an invisible line - not with his failed attempt to be in on a St. Louis Rams football franchise - but with his admission in a rare interview on - yes- the MSM that he is doing it for the money. Rush may have thought he was just being 'honest' in his admission, unlike all the other shills on radio, I guess. However, the moment someone who has espoused his conservative beliefs for over two decades, and is widely seen as the heart and 'soul' of the Republican Party, that is a disaster, which will come back to haunt him far longer and in more damaging ways than his Oxy-Contin problem of years past.
Check it out here:
Why, you may ask?
Well the millions of 'ditto-heads' that follow 'El Rushbo' religiously have just discovered that he's essentially nothing more than a money-grubbing 'entertainer'. It raises profound questions about Rush and his views? If he's doing it for the money, does he really believe what he is saying? If it started to lose him the precious advertising dollars, would he start to change his views? If money is his God, does that mean his views and beliefs are secondary?
IMHO, the public is looking for a vision that is larger than oneself. They are tired of selfishness and greed (if you don't believe it, recall the outrage over banking and insurance executive compensation revelations - let alone Bernie Madoff, today's Adolph Hitler).
Sean Hannity 'Owned' by Michael Moore
Check out Sean Hannity and how he was 'owned' by Michael Moore [Capitalism: A Love Story]in a recent broadcast of Hannity's show.
Elsewhere in the face-off, Sean makes it clear his real interest is that he should be paying less than the 60% tax rate that he currently claims to pay. When he asks Moore what would be reasonable, Moore replied that perhaps 50% would be about right. And besides, Moore added, that he didn't believe that Hannity really paid 60% in taxes. Sean refused a third party look at his tax filing. Then he mounted his attack on Moore, claiming that unless Michael Moore gave up 95% of his earnings then he is a 'hypocrite'. Huh?
Although I am not a fan of Michael Moore, I have to admit he came off looking a lot more reasonable than the completely self-interested Sean Hannity. [Maybe Sean, once again, has taken a page from his mentor Rush, and thought that somehow people were going to support him in his purely selfish look at public policy. Sorry Sean, imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but it was a PR disaster for you too!
Until next time.....