Bad Ads

I think this is going to be a recurring theme this election cycle, not that this is a bad thing per se, talk about entertainment value. I thought that ad with wheelchair bound granny getting pushed off of the cliff was about as sordid and smarmy as anyone would dare go, boy, do I feel foolish.

Janice Hahn is running for Congress. As you can see by her web page, she has the endorsements of Bill Clinton and Planned Parenthood, and she is a big proponent of green technology. None of those things, mind you, warrant a trip to the woodshed, but she has an endorsement page as well, with a veritable who’s who of prominent lefties, OK, not someone I would get behind. Check out this political ad that targets her:

That sure got my toe a tappin’, wonder if I can get that as a ring tone?

On the one hand I’m thrilled that the First Amendment is alive and well, but on the other I’m almost mortified to see what (who) can out do this for shear tastelessness.

Turn Right USA is up with an incredibly incendiary web ad that accuses California congressional candidate Janice Hahn of enabling gang members to get out jail “so that they can rape and kill again.”

The 99-second above spot speaks for itself, and is not affiliated with Republican Craig Huey’s campaign, but the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has already called on the tea partier to condemn it.

“Craig Huey must condemn this offensive and sexist ad and demand that ad makers immediately take it down. This ad does not reflect the values of California’s hardworking women and men. Craig Huey’s silence should send a chilling message to our mothers, sisters and daughters that this kind of outrageous and sexist material is tolerated,” said Jennifer Crider, deputy executive director of the DCCC.

Which brings up an interesting question, Hahn’s opponent had nothing to do with this ad, does he have any obligation to come out publicly and condemn it? I think not and his silence means nothing.

Turn Right USA made the ad:

Turn Right USA’s mission is to expose and lampoon the typical politico’s microscopic brain through cutting-edge viral videos with guts and humor!

I’d say they whiffed that one.

Political nastiness is nothing new, the Adams/Jefferson race will probably go down as the most viscous/caustic/sleazy contest in history, but it seems that lately every election cycle goes for the gold in gutter rolling. Or is it that we are just getting more creative?

UPDATE:

Another angle that we can discuss if you like is how stupid was it for Jennifer Crider, deputy executive director of the DCCC, to bring attention to the ad by condemning it? I don’t live in LA but air time costs money and given the quality we observed, was this really going to sway voters? Didn’t she jump the shark, now feels foolish and wants company to mitigate her foolishness?

Comments are closed.

  1. CM

    ….does he have any obligation to come out publicly and condemn it? I think not and his silence means nothing.

    This is definitely an interesting question. Similar to whether moderate Muslims should have to condemn every example of those who carry out violent acts in the name of Islam. I certainly don’t condemn (or consider myself responsible for any acts (at all) carried out by people who don’t believe in God (any of them). Or who share my beliefs in anything else. However I do think there IS a point where you need to set yourself aside from something or someonewhereby if you don’t actively do something, it DOES reflect on you. I think in this case if the story about this blows up, I think he has no choice but to state an opinion.

    Thumb up 0

  2. richtaylor365 *

    I don’t agree, either about the Muslim angle or whether he is obligated to condemn the ad.

    If you could find a Republican Party Law, like Sharia law, that advocated such practices and commanded the true followers to espouse these beliefs, then and only then, would you have a proper correlation. When you look at the Qur’an and what certain passages command Muslims to do, things like killing infidels, killing Jews, spreading Sharia to all lands, never resting until only Muslims (and dhimmi’s) occupy the earth, a cogent argument could be made that the jihadist are the only true followers and that moderate Muslims are in reality water down Muslims that either do not accept Sharia and the Qur’an, or just parts of it. If you could show me anything in the Republican party, any law, platform, or manifesto that expects those in the party to follow these practices, then have instances where the faithful follow up, then I would say yes, the moderates in the party should condemn it. But as you can see, not only apples to oranges, it’s apples to acorns.

    And as far as Huey needing to make a public statement condemning this, why should he? He had nothing to do with it, is not linked to it in any way, and there is no evidence whatsoever that he holds the same views. If he feels compelled to do it, fine, but this ad is Huey neutral, neither makes him look good or hurts him, so what ever choice he makes, it is his call.

    Thumb up 0

  3. Kimpost

    I don’t think you need to openly condemn every over-the-top attack ad out there, if they don’t actually come from your camp. I do however think that they need to do it firmly if said ad’s gain too much traction, or when they themselves are asked about it. Particularly if it’s a two way race, where attacks on the other person virtually are on your behalf, like it or not.

    “That’s a disgusting ad, and the people responsible for it should be a shamed of themselves, but I had nothing to do with it. Let’s now please move on to policy discussion.”

    McCain’s finest moment last election cycle was when he at a town hall defended Obama against an old lady’s idiotic claims. I think politics needs more of that.

    I would like to see a campaign where it’s made abundantly clear that Obama, Bachmann, Palin and Paul are all acknowledged as generally honourable and decent people, with political disagreements. The stoopid populace need to see Obama and his running opposition having coffee and sharing jokes on the campaign trail. That should shake the angry polarized people up.

    Thumb up 0

  4. Hal_10000

    I think he has to condemn it to make sure the meme does not get out that his was a Republican creation. Republicans have almost zero slack on race issues. If he hems and haws for even a second, the entire Left Wing will scream.

    Thumb up 0

  5. Section8

    Where did you even find this thing? It looks like they just set up shop yesterday. Considering I could make a video, and put together a site on World Press without any blog history, or any history of campaigns like these guys just did, and have it up this afternoon, I think it’s a waste of time to even acknowledge this thing. Shit, candidates from either side are now going to have to comment on every stupid thing that comes off the Internet now? Seriously, one could spend their entire life 24/7 doing that. For all we know these guys could be left leaning, making a video to make the right look bad, or they could just be some numb nuts on the right. Who knows who cares.

    Thumb up 0

  6. Kimpost

    Considering I could make a video, and put together a site on World Press without any blog history, or any history of campaigns like these guys just did, and have it up this afternoon, I think it’s a waste of time to even acknowledge this thing. Shit, candidates from either side are now going to have to comment on every stupid thing that comes off the Internet now? Seriously, one could spend their entire life 24/7 doing that.

    Which is why I think that condemnation should rest until needed. They only need to respond if something gets viral or if they are asked about it.

    Thumb up 0

  7. Rann

    This does remind me of how Bush was expected to not only condemn the Swift Boat Veterans ads… which I think he did? can’t recall now… but that Kerry actually seemed to expect Bush to force them off the air in the name of fairness. As always, Democrats sure do love our freedoms… right up until those freedoms bite them.

    Which is part of why I really don’t see much point in the Republican candidate condemning this. As Hal said, yes, the Democrats will scream if he doesn’t… but they’ll scream anyway if he does, they’ll just move the goalpost to “Why aren’t you making them stop it? They’re your supporters!” Then, even if he somehow managed to do so (these guys really don’t seem inclined to listen to anyone but their own opinions, to judge by the stinger at the end… and that’s neither condemning nor lauding them, just stating the impression), the rhetoric would just switch to “he allowed offensive, racist, sexist attack ads against his opponent onto the airwaves”, ignoring that he had nothing to do with it, let alone any power over “allowing” it out.

    Of course I’m sure somebody could complain that I’m condemning the Democrats to some “damned if you do damned if you don’t” standard, while ignoring the fact that the Democrats could just acknowledge that this ad has nothing to do with the Republican candidate and ignore it, thereby bypassing the whole “acting like twats” portion of the scenario.

    On another note… there’s a paranoid little part of me that thinks this is so over-the-top, and these guys so new and out of nowhere, that I have to kind of wonder if this is a deliberate strawman attempt. If these guys aren’t actually Democrats (connected or unconnected to Hahn) trying to tarnish Republicans by association. Even the name, “Turn Right”, is a little blatant and over the top. It seems so low-grade and lame that it’s almost like a parody, like someone was doing a “This is what Republicans actually believe is a compelling ad”… like they just couldn’t help deeply underestimating their target audience’s intelligence. I dunno, like I said, probably being paranoid, but it wouldn’t exactly be the first time some leftist trolls tried to spout what they thought were sincere right statements in an attempt to make the right look bad. See it on the internet every day.

    Thumb up 0

  8. richtaylor365 *

    . I do however think that they need to do it firmly if said ad’s gain too much traction,

    Given the quality and the message, not much chance of that happening. But I still content that Huey is not obligated to do anything. If this ad had racial, sexist or homophobic overtones, if it inferred criminality or targeted a sex scandal or some gross lack of judgment, in short, if the ad was even remotely believable then yes, some duty existed. But do you honestly think that the ad convinced anyone that Hahn got these thugs out of prison so that they could rape and murder folks?

    Thumb up 0

  9. richtaylor365 *

    Where did you even find this thing?

    Ya know, if it was just some random youtube goof, no traction would have been given but apparently it is running down in LA, it made Politico, and it garnered a comment from the DCCC down there, so it was an actual political ad.

    I posted on it, not so much because if it’s incendiary nature or that it was so amateurishly put together, but more for comedic relief, like it was from the onion.

    Thumb up 0

  10. richtaylor365 *

    but they’ll scream anyway if he does

    Yep, a candidate should never dance to his opponent’s tune. I would think that Huey would avoid it altogether, that Democratic chair lady stepped in it already, let her walk around with the stench, don’t give her company.

    Thumb up 0

  11. Hal_10000

    Another angle that we can discuss if you like is how stupid was it for Jennifer Crider, deputy executive director of the DCCC, to bring attention to the ad by condemning it?

    Maybe I’m missing something, but isn’t it to the advantage of the DCCC to publicize this ad and blame Republican racism?

    Thumb up 0

  12. Rann

    Which would simply add to the amount of paranoia fuel in my tank. The rush to acknowledge and publicize just tickles my conspiracy theorist gland and makes me wonder if this wasn’t all planned from the start…

    Thumb up 0

  13. Section8

    What made it an ad? The people running the site claim they are a SuperPAC, yet as of June 7th they are not listed. Link. Now they could have just been added to the list who knows, but to me posting a video on your own website, and a fairly shitty one at that, does not an ad make. Hell, like I said, I could set up an ad today if I wanted, so could anyone else. Also, filling out a form and calling yourself a super pac doesn’t add much either. To me, for the Democrats to scream bloody murder and to actually be taken seriously should be based on more than some video from a one man show. A one man show that no one even knows much about apparently.

    Thumb up 0

  14. Section8

    Another angle that we can discuss if you like is how stupid was it for Jennifer Crider, deputy executive director of the DCCC, to bring attention to the ad by condemning it? I don’t live in LA but air time costs money and given the quality we observed, was this really going to sway voters? Didn’t she jump the shark, now feels foolish and wants company to mitigate her foolishness?

    Oops, missed your update. I think this has more relevance than some guy posting a video, which this appears to be what has happened.

    Thumb up 0

  15. Section8

    This would seem to be a reflection of the problem of campaign finance reform, which has allowed outsiders like this to flourish.

    No, that would be the fault of the Internet that allows that ridiculous notion of free speech. See, whether he set up a PAC or not, whether there was campaign finance reform or not, tell me, would any of the following have changed.

    1) Would he still have access to a video camera and a few buddies to make a video?
    2) Be able to set up a minimally constructed blog on World Press?
    3) Post a link to the video on his blog.

    This wasn’t an “ad” that was being pushed on TV or other websites, because

    A) Even with or without the funding to place the ad, I doubt too many stations or reputable sites would want this, even with campaign finance reform.
    B) If their blog is any indication, it’s pretty obvious this is a PAC without any fricken money.

    Please, please, please. Lets look at this with some common sense. Yes, the Democrats made a strategic move, and yes, since it is a PAC they could make an issue of it from a PR perspective hoping people don’t look at it from a common sense perspective. The reality is did you see this ad on tv or any meaningful website, or did someone get a call from these numb nuts like say Politico and tell them that there is an “ad” out there, so that non news could actually become news.

    Yes, with more choices in the campaign finance reform will come more responsibility, especially from the public to determine if something is coming from a well funded/ and or known PAC that might actually involve people that are known from either party, and hence should be taken seriously, as opposed to a couple of yahoos who spent 5 minutes making a website so they could post a video on said site.

    Thumb up 0