The sincerest form of flattery

Spring is gone, but Daisies seem to be springing up everywhere.  First we have this offering from Bill Cooper:

Then we have this one against Aaron Schock

[Editor Note: This ad was actually done in 2008, and a very talented friend of mine made it. Didn’t know either of those things when I posted this. Adam]

It’s a good year to be a young blond girl actor.

It’s nice that both these ads try to play off the original “Daisy ad” — a classic of political advertising. That ad (which only ran once by the way) was both visceral and evocative.  These ads hope to tap into that fear and emotion to drive their message.

Do they work?  Not so much in my opinion.

The Cooper ad even tries to mimic the LBJ’s voice over, but as bad as you think the deficit is, isn’t not like nuclear war, and it doesn’t summon up the same fear or gut level emotion as the original.

The Callahan ad against Schock at least has to do with the threat of nuclear attack.  The issue here is that I don’t think voters really know what the ad means.  It seems so outside where we are these days to worry about nuclear weapons in Taiwan.  Maybe Callahan is ahead of the game, but the issue isn’t on my top 10.  I know it shows bad judgement, but it’s hard to get worked up over it.  If you only have so many chances to go negative, would you want to use one of those opportunities on nuclear weapons to Taiwan?

The problem with both these ads is that the daisy setup is a double edged sword: On one hand, you’re tapping into the myth of the original. On the other hand, you’re setting up an obvious comparison to the original.

I think both ads lose on that comparison. It sort of like they used the framework of the original, but missed the point of it.

And yes, if I’m going to talk about the “Daisy ad” I have to show it:

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