When I’m not doing actual work, or updating my popular blog, or this blog, I’ve been slowly working on a few new sites, because, well you just can’t have too many friends, or too many blogs.
One of my side blogs is the Adama for President blog, which features t-shirts, bumper stickers, and now, posters spoofing the Obama ’08 logo and celebrating all things Battlestar Galactica.
Today, I am releasing the first in a series of posters, modeled after the awesome “Viva Colbert” posters from a while back. A window-sized poster is coming out later today, and a larger one as well. For now, though we have the 23″ x 35″ poster for sale, and it is pretty awesome. Be the coolest kid on the block and order yours today. Or, order a stack and plaster the Mission with ’em.
You have to admire how these guys can find away around the silly bullcrap that passes for “running for president” from the establishment types….how rad is this? Of course, I’ve been no stranger to the On Notice Board on the More Popular Blog…
And, just for laughs, here’s a video that seems to indicate that perhaps there’s a virus that infects the Clintons when it comes to straight talk. I keep forgetting that this kind of nonsense is somehow better than the liar we have in office NOW:
File this in the no-you-can’t-make-stuff-up-like-this file: It seems that legendary actor and writer John Cleese, he of the Monty Python/Fawlty Towers fame, has offered to help Barack Obama’s presidential speechwriting efforts should he become the nominee this summer.
I really don’t know what to say….if I’d made something like this up, it wouldn’t even come close to being as teh awesome as this…does this mean a Department of Silly Walks is in the Obama cabinet in 2009? PS: Don’t forget to vote for Jackie Speier today if you live in the 12th CD. If you’re not sure where you vote, follow this link and find your polling place.
Remember, if enough of us vote, we can send Jackie to Congress immediately. If we don’t, we have to listen to the inane prattling of the Green Party and an assortment of no-names who will lose anyway – but we won’t have Jackie in Congress fighting for us on critical issues facing the House. So go vote!
So it looks like Ralph Nader’s running for President again, and we’re supposed to be worried or something, but I’m not.
True, I’m no fan of this charlatan. On my old blog, I wrote about his extreme dishonesty, and overall lack of ethics, and for a while got a bump on Google Searches. This time around, however, I think it’s pretty obvious his time has passed, and he’s so out of touch, his reasons for running just don’t add up.
My favorite line today was the one about “people being disenchanted with Democrats and Republicans.” Eeeyeahh. Funny thing though: Barack Obama is about to hit the one million donor mark (something Nader’s greedy hands would love to have but won’t because he sucks), and turnout in Democratic primaries have set new records, and blown doors off the turnout in the GOP primaries.
But the most telling sign of the total epic FAIL of Nader has been the response of local Green Party elected members to Nader the Liar. Green Party Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, Green Party College Board Member John Rizzo, and Green Party School Board Member Jane Kim have all come out in force for Barack Obama. Non-Greeen “Progressives” like Supervisors Daly and Peskin also support Obama. Hell, the Bay Guardian, usually the only refuge for disaster candidacies like Kucinich or Nader, endorsed Obama.
It says a lot when the folks who should be on board a supposedly great cause like Nader’s bullsh*t are instead working for a candidate who’s succeeding in ways Nader could never imagine. (Then again it shouldn’t be a total surprise – Nader refused to campaign for Green poster-boy Matt Gonzalez in 2003, because, well, because Nader sucks.)
So let the fool run his little show. Every time he does this, he seems to invent new ways to screw up and fail, and every time he becomes less and less relevant to the national discourse. I can’t wait for him to throw a tantrum about some f*cking debate, and get arrested for trespassing. If good people like those in Our Fair City have decided to tear up their tickets and say “no” to the Nader circus, I think most folks in America will be doing the same. Trivia Time: Here’s a piece of trivia that most of you might not be aware of (as you’re probably concerned with things that matter, and I mean that in a good way): when Nader’s spokesman ran for Senate, he got very little support for his bid, marred by problems and the fact that as Nader’s spokesman he elevated lying to an art form. He did however get loud and enthusiastic support from someone new to our city: Cindy Sheehan! Apparently she didn’t mind the lying and whatnot and threw her lot with Zeese. Very interesting!
The LA Times has an interesting report on the record voter turnout we’re seeing in primaries, and in particular the lopsided increase in turnout on the Democratic side.
The article has some interesting facts and figures, but it pretty much bears out what I said last week – that if you have good candidates who aggressively campaign on issues and ideals that people actually care about, people vote. Who told?
(Oh, and I find it equally amazing that Sen. Obama has been able to run an incredibly close race fueled mostly by small to mid-sized donations…while lefty champions are once again left in the dust.)
It’s a stark contrast to the mind numbingly stupid elections we had in Supposedly Liberal Brainiac San Francisco, where “progressives” had a FAIL so complete and total, turnout was in the toilet. And now, of course, the progressives are crying about the Mayor’s shenanigans, not realizing that if they’d just bothered to run a real candidate, the election might have had a different outcome. Boo hoo for them.
Most importantly, these record turnouts of voters are coming out without any of the lefty electoral gimmicks out-of-state reformers are trying to peddle across the country as ways to “increase turnout.”
It’s really simple, people. If you run a good campaign, you win the election. If you inspire people to action, they act. If you listen to people and talk about the issues they actually care about, they get excited and feel like politics is an opportunity for change – not just a tired exercise that people don’t feel matters to them.
There’s a chance that local “progressives” might take a lesson from all of this in the upcoming elections in November, and perhaps try strategies that don’t involved running around in circles, gossiping like junior high girls in gym class, and whining.
News flash, progressives: THIS DOESN’T F*CKING WORK. Stop trying to game the electorate with phony reform bullsh*t. Run on a vision and an agenda that works for the citizens who actually vote in elections, and you might win. If nothing else, it would be an improvement over last year’s “act like gossiping dorks” strategy.
The real winner will be the voters of San Francisco, if they’re given an honest race between various factions who all strive to offer a cohesive vision of policy and politics for the next four years. We’ll see what happens.
Although I work on primarily political campaigns, I try to read as much as I can about “real” advertising, since the political consulting industry can sometimes get a bit static. We tend to use the same ideas over and over because they usually work – and no one wants to go out on a limb (especially clients) and try some crazy new idea and lose and be “the guy who sank the campaign with the weird idea.”
That’s unfortunate, because to reach people today you have to speak their pop culture “language” and compete with thousands of messages from “real” advertisers. If you always hit them with “red white and blue,” they tune out. At the same time, unlike “real” advertisers, we can’t sell 365 days of the year so the tendency to stay the course is understandable.
One of my favorite places to catch up on all things ad and design related are the Under Consideration constellation of websites, and in particular, their Brand New blog which chronicles the retooling of corporate logos and brand identity.
Most recently, they wrote about the remake of the Life Savers logo and packaging which was fascinating. Almost everyone knows what Life Savers are – little hard candies that haven’t change that much for decades. Thus, how do simple sugary candies stand out in an era where everything marketed has to be “xtreme” or “totally awesome” and as loud as possible?
The folks at Wrigley’s figured it out – rather than compete on the same level as all the trendy fad candies, coming up with zany flavors, they decided to play to their strength – simplicity. In a crowded aisle full of colorful packaging the Life Savers candy bags – with their simple depiction of just one BIG picture of the candy – stand out.
In politics, sometimes you have to do the same thing to win and get your message out. There was a school of thought (especially in Democratic circles) that to win against the “other side” one had to pre-empt them on “their” issues by making them “yours” as well, so you couldn’t be attacked – you were “innoculated.” (Just take a trip in the Wayback Machine to 1984 and 1988, and you can see why people thought this might be a good idea.)
While that strategy might have made sense in the late 80s and early 90s, as it was with folks like former DLC chairman Bill Clinton when they ran for President, it’s not entirely foolproof. If politicians compete to be more and more alike, the result is often mushy rhetoric that sounds “phony” to the average voter.
Sometimes if you really want to distinguish yourself and your message, you have to stop competing with your opponent on their terms, and redefine the argument to your strengths instead. Plus it has the added benefit of being a bit more honest.
It’s funny how a piece of candy can teach you a lesson about politics. The question is, which Presidential candidates are learning the lesson, and which aren’t?
I guess we’ll see on Tuesday! Don’t forget to vote!
So here I am, finishing off the Obama/Clinton debate, and I get this email from the good folks volunteering for Barack Obama in the 12th Congressional District (SF/San Mateo). It seems our good citizens working for Sen. Obama in SF are having a primary watch party just a few blocks from my house…at the Blackthorn Tavern!
Loyal readers of my way, way, way more popular blog The N Judah Chronicles know that this is my favorite bar in the Inner Sunset. I’ve been known to attend pub trivia here (which rocks), and overall it’s one of the friendliest and most fun places to hang out here. Since the new owners took over in June of 2007 they’ve really made this place a great place to hang out. Why go all the way into SoMA or Downtown when you can have a fun time out here? At least that’s what I think. And now the Obama folks are having an event there. Smart. Very smart. Once again, the Obama folks are where the people are, and know how to bring folks in. If you’re going to have a vote watch party, why not have it at one of the best places in the Inner Sunset?
Then again, any time is a good time at the Blackthorn anyway, and this just adds to the fun. See you on Tuesday!
The funny thing about living in San Francisco is that to the outside world, folks seem to assume this is some sort of Greenie Communist Disneyland, with abortions on demand at every corner, parades in honor of Lenin and Ho Chi Minh, and so on.
Even here in town, you have people that parachute in here, thinking that we’re the capital of the left, and some of even carpetbag themselves into a Congressional run, thinking that they’re in Liberal Lefty Nirvana. Bzzt! Wrong again!
I say this because as we close in on a Mega Super Happy Fightingest Primary Ever, and Democratic voters try to decide Which Candidate to Vote For, something has been coming up, time and again in conversations I have with Real San Franciscans: a lot of people here will vote for McCain, mostly if Sen. Clinton is the nominee.
It’s really weird. These are not discussions with political folk per se, these are chats with good people of various ages, ethnic backgrounds and whatnot who really live here, and it keeps coming down to something folks really want – after 8 years of the GW Wrecking Crew and 6 years of a GOP congress, this country not only needs a political colonic to flush out the toxins of the past, but also move forward and push aside the professional screamers and assorted idiots that poison politics and get sh*t done.
And for some reason, folks seem to think that Sen. Obama might be the kind of guy who can do such a thing, but they don’t see Hillary (or is it Bill and Hillary) and the politics of the 90s being the way to go, and as such would bolt to McCain in a second.
Read that again. San Franciscans, who are alleged to be godless hippie Communists, will vote for John McCain, pro-life record or not.
Kinda freaky when you re-read it, huh?
And now the punchline – I’m not so sure I won’t be one of them. I know full well the many many problems with McCain’s past, many of his stands on issues are diamertically opposed to my own, and God, the thought of actually voting for a presidential candidate that is in the same party as President 28% and Vice President Vader still gives me the shakes.
At the same time, however, Sen. McCain has been one of the few Washington politicians who has stood up for a rational immigration policy (something of interest to my neighbors out here in the Sunset as well as folks on the east side of town).
And, unlike the Clintons in the 90s, McCain does not see Indian tribes as cash machines for political soft money donations, but instead has tried to force the inherently stupid Department of the Interior to settle the trust lawsuit that was filed to force the feds to admit they stole from millions of people for over 100 years. And up against a more Democratic Congress, a President McCain would be more likely to work with a Speaker Pelosi or a Majority Leader Reid, vs. say a President Guy Smiley (Romney).
Heresy, I know. But people are more concerned about just what kind of country we’ll have, and want to see action, not more shenanigans. President Clinton II or President Romney is more of the same old bullsh*t.
At least with Sen. Obama we might have someone who could try and bring people together, and work with folks (and hopefully a Congress populated with more REAL Democrats to back up Our Speaker ).
But a lot of people are starting to think that if it’s a McCain/Hillary contest, things could go bad, and if even us hippies in San Francisco are thinking about McCain as a legitimate choice, it’s time to take a Clue Pill and try to not invent a new way to f*ck up what should be our chance to set things right. UPDATE:Yet another reason Democrats should fear McCain. The famous button of the early 90’s “Oh God PLEASE Not Another Republican” seems appropo. (I won’t deny that it doesn’t hurt that Sen. McCain and Sen. Kennedy honored my cousin Helen, who passed away in 2006, honoring her tireless honesty, fairness, and trailblazing career as a woman journalist in DC. That said, it’s not the ultimate reason, but in the interests of full disclosure bla bla bla, I thought I’d mention it.)
Since I don’t have my trusty Mac with me, and am using the infamous San Francisco Public Library’s free computers, I can only do a quick post, sans photos. It was an interesting press event, with Sen. Obama talking to women about the challenges of making a living in the Bay Area, and some proposals he’s come out with to try and mitigate the cost of living for people who work.
This was probably the only time I’ve ever heard a politician call BS on “tax breaks” as a primary means of providing relief to those who work, since many times they can’t use the deductions on their taxes due to their income, while high income people can take the break. Sen. Obama suggested a break on payroll taxes for those who work (but don’t make a zillion dollars) as a start. Not bad.
It was kind of interesting to see the media swarm (pics to be posted) which packed the crowded room at the Women’s Building in the Mission. It was crowded, hot and yet there we all were, waiting for the Senator and taking pictures and notes at a furious pace. With only 19 days until the Mega Super Duper Big Primary to End All Primaries in A Whopping 20 states, it’s difficult for any campaign, big or small, to reach all voters in all places, so it was kinda nice to see at Presidential candidate speaking in San Francisco, in the Mission, no less.
Luke Thomas took some excellent photos (as always because he’s so talented) and they’re so much better than mine, you should just go to his site and check ’em out.
More later…the clock is ticking on my time here at the SFPL, and I have to update my other blog, as we have Yet Another Tragedy on the N-Judah line.
This, the day after we read that more MUNI money is being siphoned off to pay more salaries in the Mayor’s office, and a month after we heard that they gave the boss at MUNI a big pay raise. And all of this after we voted for a measure that was supposed to start MUNI reform – and immediately after the vote we get a string of accidents and deaths.
All I can say is…WTF? PS: I had no idea that the “blogger lounge” at Macworld sponsored by Microsoft had free actual computers one could use (when I was here the other day I gave the lounge a quick scan and it looked like you had to bring a computer). Needless to say I wish I’d discovered this a few hours ago, and avoided the glares of the angry pervs who had to wait for their porn whilst I blogged about Sen. Obama…..