02 November 2012

Past & Future; Free Campaign Advice

Twitter | @BarackObama

RT if you agree: We can’t afford Mitt Romney’s failed policies of the past. We need to keep moving forward.
I don't like to get into the horse race politics stuff, but this strikes me as an odd thing for the incumbent to say. I continually get the feeling that Obama would prefer if everyone forgot he was president for the past four years and spent their time imagining what he could potentially, maybe, perhaps do in the future four years.

If you're the incumbent, you are the past. You can't dodge that responsibility easily.

I'm reminded of Megan McArdle's (?) recent observation that lot's of challengers have run predominately on an "I'm not the incumbent" message, but Obama is probably the first incumbent to campaign mostly with an "I'm not the challenger" message.

PS "Keep moving forward" implies forward motion is already in progress. Put politely, I find that claim to be... ambitious.

PPS Since I'm on the topic of campaign messages, I'm going to mention one other things. I saw some Romeny ad (or pro-Romney PAC ad) that began with a woman watching TV, and the TV was playing a recording of Obama in the Rose Garden saying something like "If I could sit down at your kitchen table and say one thing to you...". Then the woman turns to the camera and says "Here's what I would say to you, Mr Obama..." and proceeds to talk about how bad the economy is and... well I don't know what because I tuned out because her monolog was boring.

They almost got it, but missed the mark. Here's how it should have gone:

Footage of Obama at the White House plays on the kitchen TV. Obama says "If I could sit down at your kitchen table and say one thing to you..." The camera pans to the woman. "Enough about what you say, Mr President. You've said plenty. What have you done?" The woman looks directly into the camera, holding the stare just long enough to make the viewer squirm slightly. Fade to black. And... scene.

Campaign managers across America: I am available for consulting. My fees are reasonable, as they consist partially of cash and partially of you getting your candidate to do things for my amusement.

The nature of these amusements are in proportion to how odious I find the candidate to be. Chris Christie would only have to dress up like Sallah from Raiders of the Lost Ark and Last Crusade and serve me Pimm's Cups for an afternoon. Harry Reid would have to... well, this is a family blog so I'm not going to say what I need him to do, but it involves a potted cactus, a three-legged donkey, and vintage women's undergarments.

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