Some Great TV

by: Matt Stoller

Fri Sep 12, 2008 at 18:04

This is how Democratic flacks should behave.  Great job, Ari Melber, in taking apart a Republican and getting him flustered.

And this ad from Defenders of Wildlife is great.  Sarah Palin is the People magazine candidate, she can only be taken down by something like cruelty to animals.

Finally, here's LesMisbarack, a cute video.  Campaign workers have to blow off steam somehow.

Matt Stoller :: Some Great TV

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Some Great TV | 22 comments
Sounds like the London version of Les Miz (0.00 / 0)
Only the Valjean doesn't sound like Colm Wilkenson...

Ari was great. (4.00 / 4)
This is indeed exactly what Dems should be doing all over the media. I trust this is the first salvo in a new phase of the battle. A job well done, Ari.

The wildlife ad has the potential to change Palin's image among a lot of voters who care strongly about animals. You don't have to be a PETA fan to be disgusted by what the ad shows. I've been trying to get attention on a longer, if cruder, video that gives more detail on the air slaughter Palin champions. Search "palin wolves" on youtube for a bunch more, some with additional information. This issue deserves priority treatment. Get one of the videos in front of journalists and the public. I really believe the emotional impact of this has the power to wreck McCain and his soul mate if enough people see it.

Ari Done Good (4.00 / 6)
Political TV is always inherently frustrating to me, though, since you can only really effectively take one line of attack--two in the rarest of circumstances--even when their a multiple lines, and it would be much more powerful if you could pursue them all.

In this case, it was the claim that "we don't really know" what Obama's bill called for.  So that's their excuse for making shit up?  "Well, we couldn't figure out what it said, so we just decided that meant we could make stuff up."

Hey, wait.  Wasn't that the fall-back position for attacking Iraq?  "Well, we can't be sure if he does have WMDs or not, so we'll just decide he does, and attack!"

Of course, I understand this isn't as strong a line of attack for tv, and Ari not only took the right approach, but did so brilliantly.

Still, for the real world, where real life-and-death decisions are made, this sort of rationalization is, if anything, even more dangerous, and more of a red flag than just plain lying is.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

Have to disagree (4.00 / 1)
I don't think this was a rationalization -- it was just a liar grabbing at the nearest twig. Basically "a Martian ate my homework" play.

Seems to me we have to connect lying to the harm that comes from it, like you want to do, but keep it simple. "People died for Bush's lies. Can we really afford another liar in the White House?"

Oops (0.00 / 0)
This was supposed to be a reply to Paul.

But while I'm here, who does Melber work for, anyway? Obama campaign? DNC? They need more like him.

[ Parent ]
Ari works for .. (0.00 / 0)
The Nation .. at least that is his main gig .. as far as I know

[ Parent ]
Ari Melber for campaign chief! n/t (4.00 / 1)

[ Parent ]
This Isn't An Argument! (0.00 / 0)
Have to disagree, Dave.  You're not disagreeing with me at all.  You're just saying it was a spur-of-the-moment rationalization.  Which it may well have been. (How would I know?)  But that hardly matters, since it still shows the kind of ideas they come up with, which reflects on the kind of rationalizations they've made in the past, and will doubtless try again in the future, unless they get busted, "big time," as America's #2 war criminal would say.

I do, however, agree that Ari could have added the tag line you suggest.  In fact, that tag line should be added  every time a Democrat talks about McCain or Palin's lies.  You don't have to make the sort of connecting argument I made to have that be effective if you simply repeat it over and over and over again.  

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Melber was great, but... (0.00 / 0)
...while the Les Misbarack video was adorable, it should be noted that the revolutionaries were massacred in that show, up to and including the innocent street urchin Gavroche.

So let's make sure we don't live up to the rest of the story.

PS - (0.00 / 0)
They should have done "Seize the Day" from the Newsies, because the Newsies won.

And they had Bale.

[ Parent ]
One day he's leading a worker's strike... (0.00 / 0)
...and pretty soon he's chopping up hookers with a chainsaw.

[ Parent ]
It's the lying, stupid (4.00 / 5)
We need to keep up this attack on McCain's honor and integrity as demonstrated by all the lying.  Good job.

Also, I want to see that Palin/wolf video on Animal Planet every night, nationally.

don't forget the polar bears (4.00 / 1)
It wasn't much noticed at the time, but three weeks before she was chosen as John McCain's vice presidential running mate, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin played a key supporting role in the latest episode of the Bush Administration's eight-year war on the Endangered Species Act, one of the cornerstones of American environmental law.

The Bush Administration had not wanted to designate the polar bear as threatened in the first place; now Palin's lawsuit provided cover to backtrack on the decision.

[ Parent ]
LesMisbarack (0.00 / 0)
The video epitomizes what this fight is about replace the old tired ways with - creativity, youth, and great execution.  I defy LeMisMcCain to come even close.  Way to go.

And, way to go to Ari Melber we need a lot more like him on TV.

BTW I used to look at Contessa Brewer askance until she asked a guest complaining about their name, "how would you like to go through life with a name like, Contessa?"  And of course she did call nappy Don Imus a cantankerous old fool.  You, go girl.

That wolf ad is devastating (4.00 / 2)

  Where is it playing? It runs an entire minute, though -- isn't that kind of long?

  But that hits the rawest of nerves. I hope it's all over the place.  

"We judge ourselves by our ideals; others by their actions. It is a great convenience." -- Howard Zinn

Good question (0.00 / 0)
Defenders is really good at this stuff (they proved their mettle by taking out Pombo in 2006).

If I had to guess I'd say Philly, Detroit, Columbus, Cleveland. Places with large suburban populations in swing states (without wolves). Where do you think they are/should play it?

[ Parent ]
These places; (0.00 / 0)
Pittsburgh, Denver, Tampa, Albuquerque, Las Vegas, Kansas City, Richmond, Washington D.C., Boston, Columbus, Detroit, and hell just for the hell of it, Billings and Fargo.

[ Parent ]
Show 'em some love then! (0.00 / 0)
Send 'em 20 bucks so they can run it in all those places.

Here's the link to donate.

[ Parent ]
Just checked it out (0.00 / 0)
They just say "running in swing states". So no info yet.

And as for the 1 minute length. I think that is appropriate in this case. Normally no, but I would hazard that they're targeting suburban white women and I think the length plays well to that in terms of drawing the viewer into a wrenching and emotional story. It's like watching a mini TV show.

They have a good fundraising technique set up too. They tell you how much of the ad your donation will pay for. $20 pays for one part of the ad, $200 pays for one whole running of the ad (on average I assume since obviously it costs more to advertise in some places compared to others), and on up.

I think I'll post a quick-hit on this. This is the type of ad that goes at McCain and Palin on a gut level with the exact demographic that Obama needs to win. We should give them some fundraising love.  

[ Parent ]
Ditto... (4.00 / 1)
Please give to this fund and urge stations to air it.  My concern is that because it's so graphic, it may not be aired.  They could edit out some of the more graphic footage and cut it to a 30 second ad.

[ Parent ]
Who (0.00 / 0)
Who is the TV host in that first video?  Hummina hummina hummina.  She did good too.

Planned Parenthood hits back hard at McCain for attacking bill to protect children from sex predators (0.00 / 0)

Planned Parenthood Action Fund will (reportedly) begin airing this TV commercial in Denver & Pittsburg.

It hits McCain on his bullsh*t ads attacking Barack Obama for trying to protect kids from sexual predators as hard as you realistically could without calling McCain pro-pedophile:

"Doesn't McCain want our children to protect themselves from sex offenders? Or after 26 years in Washington is he just another politician who will say anything to get elected?"

Here's from PPAF's own website, which has the YouTube video of the commercial.

Setting the Sex Ed Record Straight

Watch the Planned Parenthood Action Fund's new ad rebutting McCain's attack on sex ed.

Earlier this week, the McCain campaign released a false and misleading ad attacking Senator Barack Obama for his support of a bill that would have helped protect young children from sexual predators.

It is outrageous that the McCain campaign would seek to play political games with children's health and safety. It's also disappointing that Sen. McCain has reneged on his own promise to refrain from such tactics.

Now we're setting the record straight.

Watch our ad.

Some Great TV | 22 comments

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