Monday, October 22, 2012

Political Ad Observations - 2012 Edition

As someone who took multiple communication related courses during his Undergrad, I'm fascinated w/ political advertising.

My hometown is at the confluence 3 Congressional districts (2 of which are really competitive) & a few other races for the State Legislature. So I'm exposed to the broadcast advertising. I've noticed a few things.

We're all used to listening to the sinister, creepy, Scooby-Doo music if its an attack ad or the light, stringed or sentimental piano music if its a support ad. But I've noticed a change, the change being the source material.

For instance an attack ad could by running "Candidate X voted to increase your taxes by a whopping 55%" followed in tiny print stating something like "HR 1139-2019". Whereas others (particularly coming from any of the mysteriously named patriotic SuperPACs), will lay a claim to something "Candidate Y is in bed w/ (insert the National candidate of your choice) & has pledge to take away your Social Security. Are you going to stand for this?!"

I've noticed the more competitive the race is, the more likely the ads will respond to each other. "Candidate Y has claimed I bought a summer home in some foreign country. I want you to know that was a complete lie. I went to said foreign country because it was a fact-finding trip promoting the area in the hopes of creating jobs back home. While I was working hard for you, Candidate X was buying companies w/ the intent purpose of profiting from their layoffs."

I have to give Kirsten Gillibrand, my state's junior Senator, credit. Her ads alone are premised entirely on HOW she delivers her message. It just feels so enthusiastic & geniune. Of course except for the election where she unseated a 4-term incumbent back in 2006, she's won all her elections by 20 points or more & can afford to simply not acknowledge her opposition.

In other news...

This here is Shiloh.


Feel fee to comment on any part of this entry if you so desire.

Monday, October 1, 2012

UC Davis Pepper Spray Noncharges

Remember the Occupy UC Davis incident where the police used industrial strength pepper spray (the same product that Megyn Kelly of Fox News described as "essentially a food product"). Judge for yourself, the original incident is below:

I saw this bizarre line in a Washington Post news article reporting the noncharges.

"In reaching their conclusion, prosecutors said they relied on facts included in the task force’s report. Among them was the finding that the officers perceived they were dealing with a hostile mob and needed to spray the protesters to clear a path to safety." (emphasis mine)

They're saying protestors peacefully sitting-in (resisting arrest but not fighting back) are considered a "hostile mob". This vocabulary would make George Orwell proud.

Having unindicted criminals in uniform degrades their colleagues who are on the level & it makes it 20x harder for those officers to simply do their job. Why would anyone cooperate w/ the "good" cops when they've experienced so many instances with the "bad" cops? You're seeing this already w/ the backlash over the NYPD's controversial "Stop & Frisk" policy.

Such impunity stiffles free speech in a different way. Being in a holding cell is like aversion therapy, it gives you PLENTY of time to think. You start going over all the events that lead you there, how stupid you were, & start blaming yourself (even if you did everything you could to avoid it). It sends the message that if you dare to stand up for your rights or even come close to anyone exercising theirs, this is the treatment you can expect.

This means the police have COMPLETE impunity to do what they want & when they want & those investigating after-the-fact will take everything they say at face value.

Regardless of where you fall on the political spectrum we should ALL be worried about this mentality.

In other news...

The shot below is of Sarah & Breanna, two buds simply being themselves.


Feel free to comment on any part of this if you so desire.