Negative campaigning

Totally Gay Campaign Loses to a Drongo

The weak fear negative campaigning. They hide behind bullshit excuses like “People don’t like negative campaigning” or “I will be honourable” or a whole bunch of other gay reasons. If you are running for office and you don’t go negative you are taking away one of your most powerful weapons.

And if you are so gay you won’t hit back when your opponents are bullying you with negative campaigning you deserve to get hammered.

The 2010 election for mayor wasn’t pretty. The Ford campaign questioned whether Smitherman’s past drug use made him unfit for office, though Ford had been charged with marijuana possession and drinking and driving in 1999.

Smitherman didn’t heavily attack Ford’s past on those grounds.

“I campaigned honorably,” Smitherman said. “I’m not a person prone to regret, but I’m reminded of that old adage, ‘Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight.’ I think we were not aggressive enough in exposing his weaknesses that are even more apparent now.”

Rob Ford is a ratbag. He got busted for drunk driving with drugs. His opponent gets beaten up for his own drug use and doesn’t fight back.  Read more »

Liberals attack…hard

This is the Liberals latest attack ad…

I love negative campaigning…that video will hurt because it is true.

DEPUTY Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Foreign Minister Bob Carr, outgoing Labor Party boss Sam Dastyari have been linked to corrupt former MPs Eddie Obeid and Ian MacDonald in a new series of Liberal Party attack TV ads due to be rolled out across NSW tonight.  Read more »

Some things #Laboursgottalent contenders might say

I’ll just bet the Labour’s got Talent contestants will utter at least a few of these things that losing candidates say:

Some of them will win, but most will lose. So we’ve started taking notes on some sure-fire ways that candidates end up in the latter camp. Here’s a working set of six buzz phrases that almost always guarantee that the candidates uttering them are headed toward defeat.

  1. “I’m running a grass-roots campaign.” This translates to: “I’m not going to raise any money.” Running an effective grass-roots and get-out-the-vote operation is important for a campaign, but winning a competitive [electorate] race requires multiple millions of dollars to make your case in paid advertising.
  2. “The only poll that matters is the poll on Election Day.” This doesn’t guarantee defeat in the upcoming election, but it means you are losing the race at the time and have no empirical evidence to the contrary. It’s up to the candidate to change the dynamic of the race.   Read more »

Sour Susie: When negative attack ads backfire

There is a a truism about negative attack ads…they must be truthful. Kevin Rudd and Labour have had a massive push back over their “Sour Susie” ads:

It turns out that “Sour Susie” is an actress and not a real concerned mum, and that her lifestyle is afar different from that portrayed in the advert.

THE actress mother hired to bag Tony Abbott in a negative Labor TV ad campaign actually lives with her parents, enjoying their gourmet food and wines, while whingeing about the price of Spanish handmade tiles.  Read more »

Political quote of the day

What a cracker of a quote:

In politics attack is the best form of attack. James Carville, who got Bill Clinton elected, said it best: ”If your fist is down your opponent’s throat he can’t say bad things about you.”

The comment was made by John McTernan in an article lamenting Labor’s problem in the Australian election. He makes a good point that applies as much to New Zealand Labour as it does to the ALP.  Read more »

Bringing negative campaigning to the corporate world

Regular readers will know that I love negative campaigning, particularly from the US and Australia. Anyone can successfully run positive campaigns, but it takes a special type of operator, with a pit of darkness, to campaign negatively.

We all know how effective it is in politics so it should be no surprise that negative campaigning is now entering business. Microsoft has hired negative campaigning specialist Mark Penn to assist in going after Google.

Since Mr. Penn was put in charge of “strategic and special projects” at Microsoft in August, much of his job has involved efforts to trip up Google, which Microsoft has failed to dislodge from its perch atop the lucrative Internet search market.

Drawing on his background in polling, data crunching and campaigning, Mr. Penn created a holiday commercial that has been running during Monday Night Football and other shows, in which Microsoft criticizes Google for polluting the quality of its shopping search results with advertisements. “Don’t get scroogled,” it warns. His other projects include a blind taste test, Coke-versus-Pepsi style, of search results from Google and Microsoft’s Bing.

The campaigns by Mr. Penn, 58, a longtime political operative known for his brusque personality and scorched-earth tactics, are part of a broader effort at Microsoft to give its marketing the nimbleness of a political campaign, where a candidate can turn an opponent’s gaffe into a damaging commercial within hours. They are also a sign of the company’s mounting frustration with Google after losing billions of dollars a year on its search efforts, while losing ground to Google in the browser and smartphones markets and other areas.

Microsoft has long attacked Google from the shadows, whispering to regulators, journalists and anyone else who would listen that Google was a privacy-violating, anticompetitive bully. The fruits of its recent work in this area could come next week, when the Federal Trade Commission is expected to announce the results of its antitrust investigation of Google, a case that echoes Microsoft’s own antitrust suit in the 1990s. A similar investigation by the European Union is also wrapping up. A bad outcome for Google in either one would be a victory for Microsoft.

But Microsoft, based in Redmond, Wash., has realized that it cannot rely only on regulators to scrutinize Google — which is where Mr. Penn comes in. He is increasing the urgency of Microsoft’s efforts and focusing on their more public side.

 

The Blood and Guts election

ᔥ The Guardian

So much for hope and yes we can, now it is all about running up and punting the opponent squared in the goolies. ‘The Axe’ looks set to do just that:

Axelrod had good news. According to leaks from the closed-door meeting he assured those present that the campaign was ready and willing to pour tens of millions of dollars into negative ads attacking Romney in key states such as Florida, Virginia and Ohio. Indeed, they have already been doing just that. Masterminded by Axelrod, the Obama campaign has been airing brutal attack ad after attack ad. One of its latest efforts featured Romney singing an off-key version of America the Beautiful.

Finally a pinko that will man up.

Bush had Karl Rove, Bill Clinton had James “the Ragin’ Cajun” Carville and Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush both had Lee Atwater. These are men for whom politics is more of a knife fight than a battle of ideals.

Yes that’s what we want…a blood and guts election.

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Negative campaigning works

ᔥ RealClearPolitics

Regular reader will know that I am a fan of negative campaigning. Not the inept nasty style that Labour uses rather teh finessed truthful negative campaigning that is practiced in the US. It is certainly effective when execusted correctly:

President Barack Obama’s campaign has spent nearly $100 million on television commercials in selected battleground states, unleashing a sustained early barrage designed to create lasting, negative impressions of Republican Mitt Romney before he and his allies ramp up for the fall.

In a reflection of campaign strategy, more than one-fifth of the president’s ad spending has been in Ohio, a state that looms as a must-win for Romney more so than for Obama. Florida ranks second and Virginia third, according to organizations that track media spending and other sources.

About three-quarters of the president’s advertising has been critical of Romney as Obama struggles to turn the election into a choice between him and his rival, rather than a referendum on his own handling of the weak economy. Obama’s television ad spending dwarfs the Romney campaign’s so far by a ratio of 4-to-1 or more. It is at rough parity with the Republican challenger and several outside GOP-led organizations combined. They appear positioned to outspend the president and his allies this fall, perhaps heavily.

The latest attack ad, released on Saturday, includes Romney singing an off-key rendition of “America the Beautiful.” Pictures and signs scroll by that say his companies shipped jobs to Mexico and China, Massachusetts state jobs went to India while he was governor and he has personal investments in Switzerland, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.

That ad is superb.

Why Ken Livingstone can’t cut fares – in his own words

Boris Johnson has a great piece of negative campaigning (pdf) against Ken Livingstone.

This is how you do negative campaigning properly.

Negative Campaigning works

In New Zealand our political parties are very squeamish about negative campaigning. They shouldn’t be.

We have just seen how a relentless negative campaign can work. Julia Gillard and her supporters crushed Kevin Rudd and the nastier it got the more he squealed. But he is the one on the back bench and Julia Gillard is the one enjoying Kirribilli House. Negative campaigning can and does work:

In any event, negativity does not amount to poor politics. Today Malcolm Fraser is a hero of the leftist-luvvies set and receives standing ovations at taxpayer-funded literary festivals. It was not always so. Fraser took over the Liberal Party leadership in March 1975. He proceeded to become one of the most negative opposition leaders in Australian history. Under Fraser’s leadership, the Coalition defeated numerous Whitlam government bills in the Senate and eventually blocked supply.

In the 1970s, the most authoritative gauge of public opinion was the Morgan Gallup Poll, published in The Bulletin. The last poll taken when Fraser was opposition leader had his approval rating at a mere 29 per cent with a disapproval rating of 53 per cent. The Bulletin headed its report “Fraser’s appeal at record low”. Fraser went on to record the biggest victory in post-World War II Australia – despite campaigning on an ill-thought-through and, at times, contradictory policy agenda.

On ABC News Breakfast yesterday, 7.30 presenter Chris Uhlmann gave vent to the familiar Canberra press gallery refrain that Abbott’s relatively low approval rating might mean he is replaced as Liberal leader. Experienced observers should know that what matters in polling is the party vote – not the leader’s approval rating.