April 14, 2010

Heavy-handed RNC ad.



Ludicrous or appropriate? Silly or genuinely scary?

63 comments:

Slow Joe said...

This is an extremely terrible ad. I think it's disingenuous and it lacks a sense of humor.

Also, it's clearly extremely expensive and fails to really articulate the core point about entitlements. It's so vague. "taxes" people accept as part of the way our country operates. So instead of pointing out the fundamental change in the relationship between governed and government, we're just mad that taxes are too high.

Ugh. This is why the CBO scamming was effective.

I could have made a cheaper ad that got a better point across for far less expense.

Terrible terrible terrible.

HDHouse said...

I think heavy handed, silly, and fear-mongering leap to mind as does purposefully misleading, "got nothin'", and moronic.

The RNC has obviously read the chapters on "constructive cooperation" to address problems and put them aside for another day.

The only thing missing here is Sarah with her hair on fire. Ya'betcha.

mRed said...

Heavy handed? Nah, but I don't think the RNC will be anymore responsible with my money whether I give it voluntarily to them or whether it is taken from me by the government.

Slow Joe said...

http://www.youtube.com/user/rx2008


come on, that's a lot more interesting.

Ann Althouse said...

No humor? Tax your sneeze...

(If you drive a car ), I’ll tax the street,
(If you try to sit ), I’ll tax your seat,
(If you get too cold ), I’ll tax the heat,
(If you take a walk ), I’ll tax your feet....

Dust Bunny Queen said...

LOL. It has a 1950's monster/horror movie vibe to it. The IRS agents will multiply!! Like cockroaches in the dark growing to massive sizes. IT'S THEM taxes and IRS zombies.

Someone has been watching too many B movies on late night television

Slow Joe said...

I am cool with going overboard with 'he's taking your breathing!' so long as you pose with humor about it.

They look dead serious while making quips, and that's just not effective.

I think they just had to spend many thousands on an expensive ad agency because of the RNC's current internal climate of cronies and idiots. This is the best they can come up with, on April 15th? Why not just admit that the Tea Party has taken over the mission that the GOP used to stand for, and the RNC wants to get back to those principles.

"We're the RNC, and we want to fix the Republican party. We are joining the Tea Party instead of asking the Tea Party to join us. We promise these specific cuts, reforms, and investigations if we are given the privilege of leadership again. [bullet points]"

Or point out that Obamacare requires me to divulge very private information to insurers, or pay a fine, and that more and more Americans no longer wish to be responsible for their personal needs, and that both parties have ignored the crushing unfunded liabilities of many entitlement programs. We're out of money and spending too much, and "we at the RNC accept responsibility for our mistakes, and join you in trying to set things right".

Instead, we get this extremely expensive and meaningless crap. It might have gotten a nod out of a partisan republican, but absolutely no one changed parties over this. It brought no independents back to the GOP.

Slow Joe said...

"No humor? Tax your sneeze.."

Well, that's a quip, but it's presented as though it's extremely serious.

It's obviously unpersuasive. If you already agreed, it's not persuading you, and if you didn't, it's probably more annoying than anything. Don't you agree?

knox said...

People who work at ad agencies tend to be very liberal. They are going to have trouble understanding, and, therefore, voicing the conservative point of view. I have long believed that this is one of many, many problems that put people on the right (and therefore, the RNC) at a disadvantage in the media/communication wars.

New "Hussein" Ham said...

I will not pay income taxes until Tim Geithner and Tom Daschle are in prison for their tax evasion.

And if you continue to pay your taxes, you're a moron and deserve all the taxes they foist upon you.

Jason (the commenter) said...

I thought it was on-point. It also seemed very clear and easy to understand. The Democrats should have a hard time responding to it.

edutcher said...

Their point was not to be funny, their point was that this is happening - which it is. The mood may be a bit macabre for some tastes, but there's no doubt everything the ad says is verifiable. I think the part where they mention business closures and hiring slowdowns will resonate in a lot of places in the country.

During the Reagan years, there was a humorous ad with an actor doing Tip O'Neill making a similar point. At the time, it was thought to be very effective. Now, we have a 20.3% unemployment rate. I don't think humor will fly the same way.

mRed said...

Heavy handed? Nah, but I don't think the RNC will be anymore responsible with my money whether I give it voluntarily to them or whether it is taken from me by the government.

This is why so many people are giving directly to candidates. Nobody trusts Michael Steele. But this ad will be useful to a lot of individual candidates around the country.

Slow Joe said...

...

I think they just had to spend many thousands on an expensive ad agency because of the RNC's current internal climate of cronies and idiots. This is the best they can come up with, on April 15th? Why not just admit that the Tea Party has taken over the mission that the GOP used to stand for, and the RNC wants to get back to those principles

Would that it were true.

themightypuck said...

The vast majority of people don't have many options to avoid taxation since they take it out of your paycheck. I suppose you could just not work but that is problematic for many people as well. Finally, they can really fuck you up for not paying taxes. They can take your shit and send you to jail and be generally mean to you. Attempting to make legal arguments against taxation is to judges as killing cops is to police officers.

GMay said...

I agree with the underlying principle of the ad, but it was heavy-handed? Nah. Silly? Nah. Scary? Nah. (Hell, just toss out some real numbers, that's scary enough) Ultimately it's just poorly executed.

Now if the GOP could actually show some real fiscal conservatism instead of Dem-lite, I might buy what they're selling.

HDHouse said...

knox said...
People who work at ad agencies tend to be very liberal. They are going to have trouble understanding, and, therefore, voicing the conservative point of view."

People at ad agencies are NOT tending to be very liberal or very anything. They are just average people...unless you equate creativity with liberalism...fair point.

Ad agencies do what the client suggests. They just frame the message the client brings them. No ad agency on earth creates an ad and says to a client, "this is the new you" without a lot of back and forth, branding discussion, etc..

Slow Joe said...

"People at ad agencies are NOT tending to be very liberal or very anything. They are just average people...unless you equate creativity with liberalism...fair point."

Do you understand that you are being incoherent here? Is that just not occurring to you?

It's well known that ad agencies are much more 'liberal', just as professors are and just as lawyers are and journalists are. It's not because liberals are inherently more creative or superior. The problem is systemic to education and culture right now, not biological.

It's not nature, it's nurture. I think most people who have dealt with ad agencies (or journalists or etc etc) have noticed a lot of partisan democrats are in those fields.

Is this the problem with this ad? It really does seem not be out of touch with the message it's trying to convey, so it's plausible.

bagoh20 said...

Yea, just poor. It's not uplifting, educating, embarrassing the enemy or changing minds. Ads should do at least one of those.

The message should be about how taxes today are collected and used more poorly than anyone can justify. How it will never be enough and how it will destroy what is uniquely American and how that is unique in history. Most importantly: that it does not have to be that way and can be changed.

Ritmo Brasileiro said...

Does the GOP know anything that's not "heavy-handed"?

ricpic said...

Obama is malevolence personified.

Ritmo Brasileiro said...

To paraphrase Colonel Sanders, they do hyperbole right!

Slow Joe said...

A large amount of this ad would work just about as well if you simply switched Obama with Bush.

It's so stupid to take this approach.

The Republicans know where you keep your money and enforce the tax code when they are the 'regime' just like the Democrats do.

Doug Smith said...

Does Obama and Pelosi know how to do anything not heavy-handed? I've not exactly felt the feathery touch. If they were surgeons on the American economy's internal organs, it would be butchered already.

Ritmo Brasileiro said...

If they were surgeons on the American economy's internal organs, it would be butchered already.

And if a writer butchered the prose this tortuously, the Pulitzer committee would have... well... Whatever. Why don't you finish the ham-fisted metaphor on your own, Doug?

Doug Wright-OG said...

Ritmo: Here's another Doug to tell you, "Get Fucked you little baby!" But, then your Mommy needs you back in her widdle arms, to smother your face in her bulging tummy!

OTOH: The RNC ad is fair and accurate so allow it some slack, it'll find humor somewhere along the way, maybe. Maybe it'll sponsor more "Tea Bag" ads and contests like who can throw a tea bag far enough or hit photos of Anderson Cooper and Nancy Pelosi in the photo chops.

HDHouse said...

Slow Joe said...
"It's well known that ad agencies are much more 'liberal', ..."


I don't suppose you have ONE OUNCE of support for your assertion ... do you SLOW joe? You got nada.

That is a statement only a moron would/could make. Where in the world did you come up with that silliness.

Big Mike said...

Heavy-handed. A lighter touch with the same points would have worked better.

But overall I suspect that it will prove to be effective.

You know, a few foolish Democrats drank the Kool-Aid that once people saw what was in the Healthcare bill, they'd be thrilled. So far what's been dribbling out is anything but thrilling. Taxing the oxygen you need to stay alive in the hospital, that's low even for Democrats.

save_the_rustbelt said...

Someday we have to pay for the huge deficits run up by Reagan, Bush 41 and dumbass Bush 43.

The (my) GOP has a lot of 'splaining to do.

(not an endorsement of Obamacare, a really bad bill)

Gail said...

I don't think there's any place for light heartedness or humor in the present situation. I'm so completely depressed and shell-shocked at this point that this ad resonated just fine, thanks.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

I thought that the heavy-handedness was supposed to be funny, sort of a hyperbole to make a point in a tongue in cheek sort of fashion, but with little "just kidding- sort of" nods to the audience, like "tax your sneeze." Sort of a Glenn Beck in commercial form. I was chuckling through most of it.

Now, did it do what it was supposed to? Probably not, because very few people have a sense of humor about these things, and since it showed a black man, it was obviously racist.
- Lyssa

Gail said...

Lyssa's right as to the tone -- sort of noir parodic.

PatCA said...

Heavy handed but effective.

I like noirish quality of the guy running for his life from an unseen malefactor closing in on him! It's The Blob!

No, just the IRS.

Gail said...

I'd rather face the Blob any day

FloridaSteve said...

Overboard? Heavy Handed? How? Every word is true. There is no place left to hide. they not only want your money the absolutely must have it to keep their agenda going.

I mean come on folks. Are you still waiting for him to shift to the center? That ship has sailed.

MadisonMan said...

Who is the target audience? Someone who already is anti-Obama, or not?

It isn't very effective to me, because as SlowJoe noted, substitute Bush in for Obama, and you could mostly make the same ad.

The part that starts at 1:00 (If you want to keep your money...) is more effective than the silly imagery before 1:00. (Hiring will slow written on a brick wall? Why?)

FloridaSteve said...

save the rustbelt what are you smoking? You're complaining about the noise from fire crackers when a the ICBM's are on their way. Obama's deficits in four years will make you long for the good old days of those scamps the republicans...

Scott said...

The points are of course valid, but the ad is ineffective. The election of Barry O. was a triumph of style over substance. To be really effective, the ad would have to reference the Obama campaign's style and message while contrasting it with the hideous reality of his presidency. They didn't do that.

Somebody got paid way too much to do this ad.

FloridaSteve said...

Scott while I get your point and generally agree but I disagree with your assessment of what the point of the ad is. I believe it's intended to essentially keep the fires burning in the converted. November is a ways off yet and the outreach to those on the fence is for later in the year. Remember, when your enemy is doing himself harm, it's important that you don't interfere. It's equally important to keep you newfound allies on your side. A little melodrama won't hut in this case.

2 cents..

Scott said...

@FloridaSteve: So you're saying that if the purpose of the ad is to "stoke the fires of the converted," you don't want to remind the converted of lies that were sold to them by Obama?

el polacko said...

... and what part of the ad is not factual ?? mr.nobody-under-250k is busy taxing us all everywhere we turn..and there's lots more to come.

Penny said...

The drummer did pretty well, considering the gig.

Anyone else involved needs to rethink what they do for a living.

n said...

Ok, clunky, but accurate, ad.

I'm questioning the wisdom of personalizing Obama so much. Obama was off limits at one time...but now we have anti-Obama all the time.

In the midterms I think the large grey, cold, impersonal, Capitol Building would be better...the DMV approach.

It is all about the Dems borrowing, spending $$$$, then taxing the goose.

Oh and then blame the victim..they wanted lots of spending but aren't willing to pay for it (a la CA)

karolina said...

Good video plus the good article certainly made this segment amazing.Keep it up!


Best Attorney

Joaquin said...

Heavy handed! As compared to what?
Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Schummer???

HDHouse said...

I thought I'd be fair and visit this a day later....I just might have been in a funk or something.

Nope.

The production quality is really really poor. The topic points are at best questionable and at worst self defeating.

When one makes an ad, it is traditionally bad form to go negative on the other person and leave the positives to the imagination. Not only is it bad form, IT NEVER WORKS OUT...that is advertising 101.

Second, as noted by others, who is the intended audience? this ad makes anyone with a brain kinda crazy at best and if this is a swing vote ad, well sorry, rrrrrrrrrrrr...you loose.

If this is a feel good ad for the right wing, and perhaps that extreme right wing, well it is a winner. But a huge rule in advertising is not to make advertisements for yourself. You are never the audience.

mRed said...

HDHouse, "When one makes an ad, it is traditionally bad form to go negative on the other person and leave the positives to the imagination. Not only is it bad form, IT NEVER WORKS OUT...that is advertising 101."

Uh, political advertising 101 shows conclusively that negative ads do work and work well. The real purpose, whether it is message or fundraising, drives the focus of any ad, especially negative ads. Once accomplished, go nice-nice just before the election. That is advertising 101.

Mick said...

Of course the media covers for him, and are trying to say that our tax bills are lower. What the ad should say is that he is not a son of our soil, he is the son of Kenyan soil (his father was never a US Citizen, thus Obama is not a Natural Born Citizen). He wants to change our way of life, since he doesn't come from it.

Der Hahn said...

n said...

I'm questioning the wisdom of personalizing Obama so much. Obama was off limits at one time...but now we have anti-Obama all the time.


It's his poll numbers. First rule of politics is kick 'em when they're down.

Trooper York said...

The accumulated oeuvre of hdhouse indicates that the employees of ad agencies are not only extremely liberal but they are also senile douchebags.

lemondog said...

Chump Taxpayer:
By the pricking of my thumbs,
Something wicked this way comes.
[Knocking]
Open, locks,
Whoever knocks!
[Enter IRS]

IRS :
How now, you secret, black, and midnight dregs !
What isn't you do?

mccullough said...

Personally, I've never understood demonizing the IRS. It is Congress (and the President if he doesn't veto) who determine the fiscal policy.

Most people who work for the IRS are smart, professional, decent people.

Trooper York said...

"Most people who work for the IRS are smart, professional, decent people."

Very true. And they all deserve a raise.

Please remember my attitude when you guys review my return.

Thank you.

c3 said...

RB said:
Does the GOP know anything that's not "heavy-handed"?
irony much?

truthful or heavy-handed?

more "light handedness"

only heavy-handed until the "happy music" starts and the diverse families smile about President Obama's new bill!

C'mon RB. Heavy-handiness is stock in trade in political ads

Slow Joe said...

It's so funny that hdhouse says creative fields are dominated by liberals, because liberals are more creative, and then when someone else points out that ad agencies are more liberal to suggest maybe conservatives have a hard time finding a good fit with them, hdhouse freaks out, saying that's ridiculous, and ad agencies are no more liberal than the general population.

He knows he's full of crap, but what's funny is how angry he is that someone is making a claim he also makes when it insults conservatives.

Why are people like that attracted to this blog? A huge amount of the lefties here are just plain incoherent and want to be rude to people. Worse than the liberals at outright conservative blogs.

Robert Cook said...

Knox said,

"People who work at ad agencies tend to be very liberal. They are going to have trouble understanding, and, therefore, voicing the conservative point of view. I have long believed that this is one of many, many problems that put people on the right (and therefore, the RNC) at a disadvantage in the media/communication wars."

And yet, somehow, the conservatives control the terms of debate on all public issues, and have succeeded in convincing ever greater numbers of people that formerly moderate, centrist policy positions are now the tyrannic ravings of commie stooges. Conservative spokespersons dominate the tv news programs and their viewpoints are seen as the "norm," as opposed to the presumably "radical" (sic) ideas of purely milquetoast Democratic centrists such as Obama.

The ad also disingenuously ignores the real devourer of our tax dollars: our pointless, baseless, illegal terror wars abroad, started by a Republican administration, now continued by a Republican-lite administration. These dollars confiscated from us produce no beneficial results for us: no health care, no employment, no rebuilding of our crumbling national infrastructure, (which would provide employment...a double whammy), nothing except murder, mayhem and torture.

Greenwald has an article at Salon today discussing the Obama administration's attempt to compel Yahoo to turn over user emails without warrants. Such violation of our rights is frightening and does bespeak a growing tyranny in government, one that all Americans should fear and decry. However, it is a tyranny that is part and parcel of the policies of previous administrations; Obama is no radical break from precedent, but merely a more palatable public symbol of the government encroachment on our liberties that has been underway for years. Obama does not violate standard American policy but continues to fulfill it.

Trooper York said...

On the other hand, Robert Cook who is very liberal is at least always coherent and consistent in his views. In all seriousness I enjoy hearing from him even though we almost never agree on anything.

And I agree that liberals and conservatives should join together to protest the ongoing destruction of our liberties by an intrusive act as he has describe in examining our emails.

I just want to say I value your opinion Cookie and I hope you continue to voice it. Thank you.

raul said...

Here, then, are 10 Inconvenient Truths for Tax Day:

1.Over 95% of Working Households Got Tax Cuts

2.Only 2% of Tea Baggers Know Obama Cut Their Taxes...

3.52% of Tea Partiers Think Their Taxes are Fair...

4.And think the Federal Tax Level is Over Double What It Is

5. 1% of Families Earned 24% of All Income...

6. And 57% of All Capital Income

7. 400 Richest Taxpayers Saw
Incomes Double, Tax Rates Halved

8. Only 1 in 500 Families Pay the Estate Tax

9. Corporate Taxes Have Plummeted as a Share of GDP

raul said...

Knox said - "People who work at ad agencies tend to be very liberal."

Based on what?

You have stats that confirm this drivel?

I doubt it.

raul said...

New "Hussein" Ham said..."I will not pay income taxes until Tim Geithner and Tom Daschle are in prison for their tax evasion."

Translation: I have no income.

Trooper York said...

Unlike Luckyoldson/Michael/Jeremy who now seems to be posting under the name Raul.

I guess it is a tribute to Ricky Martin.

Robert Cook said...

Trooper York,
I appreciate your remarks, especially given your disagreement with most or all of what I post here. Thanks.

Trooper York said...

No problem Cookie. It is always hard to post divergent opinions that go against the pack. I think it is not mentioned often enough by my more conservative brethren that we value hearing the voice of the other side presented in the way that you do it. Calmly and coherently.

Unlike many others who post here, you are always to the point and reasoned in your arguments. I enjoy reading them. We can agree to disagree but I do respect your viewpoint that definitely comes from a coherent world view.

Now I have to get back to the regularly scheduled jocularity.

The children that went to communist day camps in the fifties were called red diaper baby’s......does that mean we can call hdhouse a red-Depends baby. Just sayn’

raul said...

Trooper - Who are you talking about?

c3 said...

Raul;
This might be a bit more bi-partisan.

Or some other numbers.

And more detail (pdf)

On the last one see graph on page 31.

So Raul how steep does the curve need to be to make it "fair"

And finally, we don't often get Hollywood celebrities to speak out on such issues but here's an unlikely source. (I bet he can answer my question.)