August 27, 2008
At last night’s day two of the Democratic Convention, with millions of eyes watching, Senator Hillary Clinton delivered the speech destined to come — her complete and sincere backing of Barack Obama. Saving her from stealing die-hard delegates and once again making herself known as “running against” Obama, Clinton’s speech made it very bold and clear from the start that she was for Obama.
But what really made the speech stand out was the fact that it went straight to the point. Clinton and her team knew her role and didn’t overshoot it, which proved my expectations wrong. She shot right to the point after a very short (and rather disappointing) introduction by her daughter with the repetition speech strategy that both she and Obama share, addressing the overall point of: “I speak to you as a mother, a senator, an American, and a supporter of Barack Obama.”
The long awaited speech was both executed perfectly, but also added its own dose of fun as well (the sisterhood of the traveling pantsuits remark) that even got Obama to laugh. So for what purpose did this speech really pose? It was a mere reminder of Obama’s Thursday speech that gets more important by the hour.
August 25, 2008
The first day of the Democratic National Convention, even without Barack Obama, was a very successful one. Though many suggested it was just a warm up for the senator’s big appearance on Thursday, August 28th, it really had a more important vibe to it, different that many people — including me — precluded.
Some of the things I noticed included the fact that very few politics were discussed, making the event more about showcasing and introducing Barack Obama, in which Michelle Obama took to her advantage. Throwing out a speech with emphasis on her more personal points about Obama’s history, story, and the hurdles he had to jump to be where he was today. It was a very effective speech that loosened up the previously uptight crowd of delegates to near tears. And not only was the speech powerful, convincing, and persuasive, it also helped out the Obama campaign in a strategic way, too. It in a sense gave the convention, politics, and the Obama campaign a more relatable feel, which both parties are hard-pressed for. Nevertheless, the speech not only may have convinced many would-be non voters or die hard Hillary supporters to punch in Obama’s name on the ballot in the near future, but it really was an attack in itself to the Republicans, proving that Obama had the family and comfort appeal more than they have. Matthew Yglesias may have missed this attack for something literal, as he claimed the only one who really pulled out a true attack was Claire McCaskill.
Nevertheless, this first day has really set the tone for a convention of the ages that well-suits this very different election year. Hearing Barack Obama’s very anticipated speech on Thursday will definitely be something to look forward to.
August 25, 2008
Although it hasn’t exactly been breaking news that sinking software-God Microsoft has hired America’s favorite family comedian Jerry Steinfeld to promote their previously poorly advertised Vista, the big question still remains: was it really worth it?
Dumping 10 million dollars on a single promoter (in my opinion) was really something that shows the outside world that Windows has a failing operating server, and they know it. If you think about it, Mac didn’t make much noise by hiring lesser-known Actors Justin Long and John Hodgman, and in a sense they really came out of nowhere with that strategy in delivering one of the greatest ad campaigns ever assembled. And in Microsoft’s more high profile recruiting of Jerry Steinfeld, they have really taken another approach. Will it work? It all depends on Steinfeld.
Obviously, the most effective ads have been brought out by the advertising company, but really executed by the actors in the actual ad. And because of that, Microsoft really needs to focus on pumping out a lot of their time on a great supporting cast (if there requires one) and a great director. If that doesn’t fall into place, Microsoft needs to spend their next ten million on a new operating system.
August 24, 2008
As a recent media spike (which has consumed most of my blog), Barack Obama is heading into the Democratic National Convention — and the rest of the world is keeping their eyes open — and their noses up. The question have popped up everywhere — what would be Obama’s perfect ending to the “official” primary season? Now that Hillary Clinton, virtually guaranteed 2nd place, has recently pledged to give up her remaining delegates, the experts have made their predictions and suggestions over the web, giving the public different angles to look at.
But what really struck me was lingering in a news source that I normally stay away from — Fox News. They posted a very interesting view on Obama, not exactly as a political tactic to pounce on, but as a general state of mind — being aggressive. And what really took my attention about this was the fact that it was very simple, true — and genius. Obama — held under mercy by Hillary Clinton (which made him politically weak) — has now been released by her grip, not only relieving himself to his normal political standards, but giving him the chance to go back to who he was when an unknown presidential candidate years ago — fight.
And in a sense that is really where he is best off right now. Fox argues that the 2004 convention was more or less lost by John Kerry because he gave a very “passive” argument — later letting the Republicans speak undisturbed, without answering the Democrat’s attacks, during their convention. Although I don’t agree that this was the main cause for George Bush ultimately winning the election, I thought it was a very important and well thought out point by Fox.
This also leads me think being more aggressive would be something that Obama could use to his advantage, not only in the convention, but also in the general election. Let’s face it — Obama is an incredible speech writer and speaker, so furthermore it wouldn’t be very hard to incorporate some attack points geared toward the Republicans in his acceptance speech Thursday. He could later (if those points are indeed effective) pound them into the press during general election debates with John McCain.
So, all in all, this is in fact a very crucial convention which can be overlooked by anyone without a credential dangling from their neck. And if Obama effectively pursues these ideas, he could have a boost toward the elections, which will be a daunting task.
August 23, 2008
After glamorously introduced in Barack Obama’s home state of Illinois, Joe Biden excitedly strolled up to the podium, addressing the thousands of screaming voices directed to him. And at the same time, across the United States, hundreds of thousands of McCain’s loyal supporters banned together, gathering for another swipe at the Democrat’s final campaign.
Its just another day in the world of politics, where bitter rivalries are settled by a public media death-match, and separate campaigns take whatever they can find and throw it into the fire. And this is precisely what is happening now on the web in both sides of the center, both officially and through amateur sources. JohnMcCain.com recently ran a section with pre-primary debate footage of Biden confirming that Obama was too inexperienced to be the president of the United States. This ad, which is now on a youtube thrill ride, has been both pushed on proudly by conservative bloggers and ripped up by liberal sources. It has been been debated on both sides the by the professionals and used by Obama’s extreme opposition (the ever so questionable McCain-Clinton group) in every possible angle that somehow attacks the senator.
And with campaign news like this, an explosion of opinions and analyzation all over the world was in a sense expected.
In my opinion, Biden on Obama’s ticket strikes many nerves. Politically, he is the best pick to support the candidate, with his impressive foreign policy insight and credentials, but at the same time he is the perfect person for conservative attack. Even though he is now on team Obama, his long line of gaffes and politically un-correct (whether taken out of context or not) comments will come back to haunt him, whether delivered by the press or by the opposing party.
But then again, that’s just a part of politics, and in the end, it will be America’s decision whether he is the overall best running mate for Obama, not McCain’s.
August 21, 2008
Of the many political bullets a successful politician can dodge, cameras and press aren’t one of them.
After catching wind of Obama admitting he has made his choice for Vice President, one might fall victim of the far-well too known knack of the media to ride the ‘this just in’ wave, confusing the hailed politician with an entertainment star. It seems like Newsweek and Hello magazine are recently starting to integrate with Obama-like news, which could ultimately make one of his worst fears come true — becoming a celebrity. Many, including the republican nominee John McCain, have accused the senator of soaking up the celebrity life, comparing Obama to Paris Hilton and Britney Spears. And as this realization becomes closer and closer to Obama, there is really only one thing to do…deal with it.
As Obama travels the globe, he will be swarmed by a mix of the media’s camera flashes and smiling fans, and he simply can’t get rid of only one. Both will follow him around like a loyal pet, and showing any frustration to this can and will backfire at him, which will send the right wing press (including McCain) into a full-fledged field day. So accepting this recent stardom may be a hard thing to do, but it will be the best choice for the senator long-term.
So how exactly can this be carried out without ending in disaster? After arousing enough news sources with his vice president cliffhanger, Obama will have to try to sole this frenzy by delivering an “end — all” speech with his running mate this Saturday. Hopefully for the senator, after this chapter in his campaign finishes, the media can switch their attention to John McCain’s vice president fiasco. I’m sure the public (and the democrats) would like some more wind about Sarah Palin’s bid…
August 20, 2008
Genius marketing mixed in with perfect tactics and fan support have made senator Obama’s new ads as effective as ever. After McCain’s celebrity attack ads geared towards Paris Hilton and Britney Spears as well as the Illinois senator, a response ad was imminent — and hyped.
And did it come, in Obama’s first attack ad: “Embrace”, which turned the tables on the popular political ‘celebrity’ topic and focused on the popular web video of McCain hugging current President George Bush — who has now become public enemy #1 for the Democrats. More notably though, “Embrace” was truly the first full-fledged attack on McCain, and in my opinion it came at the best time.
Although he has been steadily gaining on Obama’s lead in the polls, McCain’s PR has been on the decline recently, starting with his Iraq-Pakistan border gaffe and continuing with his recent attack commercials that seem to have little thought and research thrown into them. And because of this they have been ripped to pieces publicly by Obama staff and then discussed in numerous liberal blogs and forums.
On the flipside, Obama’s ads have been technically defensive responses with savvy quotes and researched facts, which have strangely been untouched by the right wing so far. His second ad, “Economy” was a simple but genius approach which has not been yet done before, but startled viewers. Starring McCain’s economic gaffs and disagreeing American citizens, on air the ad was very convincing — although it is very, very possible the people in the ad were the ones who agreed with Obama. But what not many people realize is that the Americans in the ad were from some of Obama’s weakest states, including Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky — where the average Joe would probably a McCain guy. This may have gone unnoticed by many, but it was a great idea for the campaign to exploit that weakness in a public way.
But not only is Obama winning in the advertising category, he’s orchestrating McCain attacks every day — most without him knowing. Obama’s fans have played a huge role in his campaign, and they have continued to on the web, where “first door on the left” type of blogs are sending out disses and attacks to the republican side with appeal to everything from McCain’s secret service to remixes of his gaffs and views being ridiculed by “experts”.
So as Obama continues on with his hyped running mate decision and television ads, he knows one thing for sure — he won’t be alone. Far from it.