Thursday, December 17, 2009

Move On raising big bucks to stop Lord Lieberman

"Joe Lieberman is single handedly gutting health care reform.
The time
for forgiveness is over. It's time to hold
Senator Lieberman accountable."

Move, one of the largest political action committees in the country is, as I post this, just about $75,000 short of raising one million dollars for a campaign to neuter Senator Joe Lieberman's single-handed attempt to stall or kill historic health care reform.

Their appeal for ten bucks is unambiguous: "First, we're going to launch a huge ad campaign to make sure every last Connecticut voter knows that Senator Lieberman is blocking strong reforms. Then, we'll push Senate leaders to strip him of his chairmanship and seniority. Finally, we'll work to defeat him in his next election. We can do this."

Move On's appeal starts with a quick review of Lieberman's mad shenanigans, "First, Joe Lieberman helped President Bush invade Iraq, and the Democrats in Washington forgave him. Then, he endorsed John McCain, and they forgave him again. Then, he personally attacked Barack Obama at the Republican National Convention, and still the Democrats forgave him. Now, Joe Lieberman is single handedly gutting health care reform. The time for forgiveness is over. It's time to hold Senator Lieberman accountable."

This has resonated with enough people to make them pitch in almost one million bucks to slow down this supposedly independent Senator who lost his Democratic bid in 2006 and now seems to be representing only his mercurial petty whims instead of the state of Connecticut ... which is a solidly blue state. It went 60% for Obama in 2008. Polls in Connecticut show Lieberman is already in trouble. Thirty percent of Lieberman voters in 2006 later said they would not vote for him again, and, in another poll, he trailed one possible Democratic opponent by a whopping 44 points.

Whether it is big buck political donations from the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries that has has caused his total flip flop on health care reform, or a bruised ego, is not clear. His steadily building Little Caesar rage from feeling he has been snubbed by his caucus seems to many to be driving his decisions.

While holding Democrats hostage for his crucial 60th vote he seems oblivious to his pariah status and seems willing to possibly kill health care reform before it can finish the long hammering-out process ahead. What a legacy that would be for proud, independent Joe. But he gets his gold plated Congressional health insurance plus a fat annual retirement no matter what. He and his colossal ego could ride off into the sunset with no health care worries and plenty of walking around money, happy to say to hell with America.

It has to be more than inflated chutzpah. Maybe his delusional state also sees his reelection as a sure thing because he is so right and so loved.

Or maybe he has been watching too many WWII Kamikaze movies.

If you have had enough of Loony Lieberman and want to donate a couple of bucks to the Move On campaign, here's the link:

Graphic by Larry Ray

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Chrysler TV Spot : US Ad Agency Misses Message

New York Ad Agency's Sour Grapes over Italian Produced PSA

A truly uplifting 45 second public service television spot features a new Chrysler 300 breaking through the Berlin wall with the flying stones turning into white doves. No overt sales pitch for Chrysler is made at all, but the fact that an appeal for international peace and freedom is being made by Chrysler may be one of their strongest company messages in a while.

However, their long time US ad agency, BBDO, is crying foul because Chrysler Group's Olivier Francois, the new president-CEO of the Chrysler vehicle brand, hired an Italian ad agency to produce the spot, which is very similar to a Lancia commercial from a year ago. Lancia is part of the Fiat group.

Francois commented in a press release, "For Chrysler, this is a chance to use our brand image to join with others in the fight for peace and to knock down the walls that divide us. We at Chrysler believe in doing the right thing and making a difference."

The Italian cinematography celebrates Chrysler visually while delivering a strong message for achieving world peace. The spot ends with a call for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma's immobilized pro-democracy leader. She is a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, who has been in and out of house arrest since 1989.

The Chrysler message supports the 10th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates being held in Berlin December 10-11, 2009 coinciding with the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall, as well as an international internet campaign to free Nobel Laureate, Aung San Suu Kyi.

BBDO's contract with Chrysler runs out at the end of next month, and trade publication, Advertising Age, had a banner headline today proclaiming,"After Taking U.S. Bailout, Chrysler Hires Italian Agency." A former Chrysler Group marketing chief, Julie Roehm, blasted the international peace message noting that "social causes have a place in advertising," but not this one.

"The message is a disconnect to what matters to people here," she said. Americans are focused now on getting back to work and the economy back on track, she said. "I don't think the vast majority of Americans know who this woman is or frankly care."

To Ms. Roehm there apparently is no greater cause for concern than envisioning out of work BBDO staffers being forced to pound the pavement at the end of January. An international internet awareness effort, Your Face For is raising support, money and global awareness for "this woman" for whom Ms. Roehm, in her xenophobic nearsightedness exhibits such crass indifference.

Perhaps if she and her chums at BBDO had been doing a more far-sighted job for Chrysler, BBDO might not be losing their contract and Chrysler might not have had to be saved from collapse ... which involved getting rid of ineffective executives and replacing them with new leadership.

The US financing was loaned to Chrysler to allow it to reorganize and emerge from bankruptcy, which it accomplished in record time. New robust changes are but the beginning of what could eventually see Italy's Fiat with a 51% ownership of the new Chrysler Group LLC, "if it meets financial and developmental goals for the company." And those goals center upon revitalizing its manufacturing facilities, parts suppliers and work force in the USA as well as abroad.

Starting to make Chrysler a name known and respected in European and other international markets is what this powerful TV imagery is beginning to do. A friend of mine in Italy who saw the spot emailed me saying, "I think it's great and almost enough to get me to buy a Chrysler! ALMOST-- can I trade in my 2003 Fiat Punto???"

Take a look at the Chrysler spot and see what your gut reaction is.

To view video, go here.

Graphic from Chrysler TV Spot