Friday, October 9, 2009


We have awakened from our dogmatic slumbers. For weeks Brandsinger has been dormant – our celebrated wit turned witless. Autumn arrived to find our senses dulled by damp days and drudgery.

Where were the exciting brand subjects? GM ditching Saturn and Hummer like a snake sheds unwanted skin? Not worth putting finger to keyboard. The Beatles back from Hades thanks to video games for people pretending to play guitars? Ah, the Beatles as a brand – as interesting as Shredded Wheat.

For weeks, ennui ruled brand-dom – and Brandsinger slept.

But today, a great brand has roared to life and seized our attention! Like a Yankee clipper surging forward under a fresh breeze, the mythic Republican Party, the Party of Lincoln, Reagan and Teddy Roosevelt, has swept off the cobwebs, pounded its chest and launched a muscular attack against… against… it has sounded the clarion c-c-c-c…all. It has… rumbled like a volcano and… uh seized the opportunity to make a bold… It has… It has what!? The Republican Party has ferociously attacked the despised Barack Obama for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize!

Yes, this Republican Party, a once-blue-chip brand of depth and dignity, of power and passion, the Party of Emancipation of African slaves and lower taxes for wage-slaves, has bellowed out a sadly peevish reaction to the Nobel Committee’s favor to Obama.

Writes Michael Steele, Chairman of the Republican National Committee: It is unfortunate that the president's star power has outshined tireless advocates who have made real achievements working towards peace and human rights. Even the normally fawning media have expressed shock at the clearly political and unmerited award…” and so on.

In his letter, Steele – leader of a once-magnificent force that energized American politics in the 1980s with vision and humor – begs supporters to rise up and take the occasion of Obama’s award to toilet paper the Presidential residence, accidentally spill coffee on the President’s wife, stick out their tongues and yell liar.

“Help us remind the Democrats that trendy slogans and international esteem don't create new jobs for Americans…” – This is a brand that seeks popular support? Steele and the flounderers leading the Republican Party seem to want their brand to stand for infantile peevishness. They are wasting precious equity. They are taking a brand – Republican Party – that stood for wise principles and repositioning it as a fount of petty bickering. They are turning an esteemed name – Republican – into a synonym for spite.



Jay Livingston said...

"Infantile peevishness" it is.

The real off-brand stuff is the denigration of the US as a nation. We don't have a queen, so the President, besides his other governing and political roles, is also the symbol of the country as a whole. Scoffing at the Nobel and cheering when Chicago lost out at the IOC runs counter to the kind of patriotism that the GOP has always played on.

But how did it happen? I can understand why the media conservatives -- Rush, Ann, Glenn, et. al. -- are like this. It gets a devoted following -- small for an electorate, but large enough for cable news TV ratings. But why would the RNC want to imitate them?

(And, BTW, there's something to be said for, and about, shredded wheat. And the Beatles brand.)

brandsinger said...

Jay! -
Thanks for the comments - and my answer to your question, "why would the RNC want to imitate" Rush, Glenn, et al is in the post: peevishness and spite. These have become the hallmarks of the Republican brand. It's very sad. Like watching a once-great slugger having trouble catching up to a fastball.

Anonymous said...

Here's what John McCain said in reaction: "“Oh, I’m sure that the president is very honored to receive this award. And Nobel Committee, I can’t divine all their intentions, but I think part of their decision-making was expectations. And I’m sure the president understands that he now has even more to live up. But as Americans, we’re proud when our president receives an award of that prestigious category.” Now that's the elegance and statesmanship I expect from a Republican leader! And from a man who would have made a great president!

brandsinger said...

Thank you anonymous one for that quotation. McCain is a gentleman. Steele a hack. Unfortunately McCain is old and un-influential. The screamers rule a once-grand party.

participant43 said...

At least in their trashing of Obama receiving the Nobel, the critics were directly and indirectly criticizing Obama's (lack of) accomplishments.
But in the joyous exclamations of Beck and Limbaugh, in the prounouncements of the Weekly Standard, and in the spontaneous applause and hoots amongst conservative convention participants first when it was announced to them that Chicago lost out in its Olympic bid, and then, yelping even louder when they heard that Chicago had indeed come in last, now *those* cheers and approbations were truly at America *losing* on the world's stage. Hence a new definition of patriotism by those Republicans and conservatives---and oh, how they used to love and tout their country, fly high the flag, and deprecate the rest of the world.
If they can cheer Chicago's loss, it too clearly reveals that none of their pronouncements can be taken seriously and at face value, whether it be about stimulus, about health care, about their sudden concern, god forgid, that Medicare might be made more efficient and endure some cuts under proposed congressional plans.

Though I can be fairly characterized as a liberal, I too think the Nobel award to Obama is absurd, cheapens the prize and diminishes in some small degree past (and future) recipients--and I would have liked for Obama to have respectfully, tactfully, and graciously thanked the committee but turned it down and spoke of his hope that his future endeavors might someday in the future make him feel worthy of such a citation. I'm sorry that no liberal commentators spoke out about the committee's well intentoned but misguided decision.

brandsinger said...

Well and wisely put, Part 43. Thanks and welcome to the board. Please read Peggy Noonan's essay for a level-headed, if hot-blooded, reaction from the right.

Any way you cut it, Republican leadership looks foolish, undermining the Republican brand and diminishing our political discourse.

Thomas said...

As Participant43 characterizes himself a Liberal, I would characterize myself as a right leaning, Republican voting, no left turn signal in the car type of Conservative. So speaking from the Conservative point of view, It is with great hesitation that I have to agree with a Liberal.

The fact that Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace prize on the basis of promises that have yet to come to fruition, is definitely absured and truely does cheapen the award in and of itself. I'm just waiting for all the praise to come out touting the fact that he's giving the prize money to charity. I mention this because like a CEO in the Corporate world, a sitting president wouldn't be allowed to keep the money in the first place.

As for my fellow right leaners like Beck and Limbaugh, yes, they sometimes can lean a little too far. But on the other hand, the lefties have Michael Moore with his mocumentarys that more then make up for the difference.

brandsinger said...

Hi Thomas - thanks for the comment. My original point - obscured in the wisdom flying around here - was that the Republican leadership reacted childishly, regardless of the flimsy merits of the Nobel Committee's decision. Republicans need to have more to offer America than shrieks of ridicule.