"When it comes to selling bars, trucks or even politicians, you can wave the flag or you can drape one over a coffin. You can’t do both."
Says David Carr in his NYT column The Media Equation. This is an interesting little article full of revealing little observations. And you don't have to agree or disagree with Karr to be interested in his observations.
He's upset about the new commercial for GM trucks featuring John Mellencamp singing "Our Country". Apparently, so are a lot of other people. I've only seen the commercial once, and I thought, "So maudlin. Does this really work?" (Karr reacts much more elaborately.)
Truck commercials aren't known for subtlety or, ahem, nuance. But it seems experts feel this one has a lot of particularly offensive nuance, ranging from John Mellencamp to Rosa Parks and somehow sweeping up Rudy Giuliani too.
National travail obviously touches the heartstrings and it’s hardly surprising that Sept. 11 became a theme in political advertising. At the Republican National Convention in 2004, Rudolph W. Giuliani, whose finest hour occurred during those attacks, recalled in his speech that he confided to Bernard B. Kerik as the towers fell, “Thank God George Bush is our president.”
I expect we'll be reminded of that statement often next year. Will Giuliani have to live it down, or let it ride?