Lather, Rinse, Repeat

Killary Klinton

Killary Klinton

Politics in the United States is marketing. Nothing more, nothing less.

So, here comes Killary, as reported by The Washington Post:

Is Hillary Rodham Clinton a McDonald’s Big Mac or a Chipotle burrito bowl? A can of Bud or a bottle of Blue Moon? JCPenney or J. Crew? As she readies her second presidential campaign, Clinton has recruited consumer marketing specialists onto her team of trusted political advisers. Their job is to help imagine Hillary 5.0 — the rebranding of a first lady turned senator turned failed presidential candidate turned secretary of state turned likely 2016 Democratic presidential nominee. Clinton and her image-makers are sketching ways to refresh the well-established brand for tomorrow’s marketplace. In their mission to present voters with a winning picture of the likely candidate, no detail is too big or too small — from her economic opportunity agenda to the design of the “H” in her future campaign logo.

“It’s exactly the same as selling an iPhone or a soft drink or a cereal,” said Peter Sealey, a longtime corporate marketing strategist.

As always, spending will reach new heights, and choices and democratic responsiveness will be even closer to zero.

It’s going to be a long winter, friends.

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Automatrix

Sarah Mandato As “content marketing” devours the talent and space that once was journalism, its architects include the likes of Sarah Mandato (what a name for an overclass mind-molder!), “director of content solutions at Nativo, a native advertising company.” As shown at Advertising Age, here is how our dear pixie-bot thinks and talks, as she labors to get her victims to “consume” her tricks on her clients’ sites, as “brand content served within publisher editorial streams, matched to the look and feel of each publication”:

How can brands ensure they’re optimizing content?

Optimization opportunities are similar to having a focus group providing real-time feedback about what does and doesn’t appeal to readers. With today’s robust ad tech ecosystem, marketers have expanded tools to apply A/B tests and optimizations on campaigns. It’s no different with content — marketers can test their branded content’s various components, such as headlines and images. By not taking advantage of this, brands are turning down the chance to listen to consumers and gain actionable insights around messaging that best resonates with users.

Yes, “listen to.” That’s “listen to” in the mode of BB and Winston Smith, of course.

Lovely stuff, isn’t it?

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Verizon Must Go

guillotine Verizon, the mega-corporation that told its employee David Strayer to stop telling it about the massively homicidal nature of encouraging people to use cell phones inside automobiles, now has this to say about the simple, long-overdue idea of ruling that internet access is, like snail-mail, broadcast airspace, and transportation, a public utility:

“The FCC can address any harmful behavior without taking this radical step,” Michael Glover, senior VP at Verizon Communications Inc., said in an e-mailed statement. “It is counterproductive because heavy regulation of the Internet will create uncertainty and chill investment.” [Source: Advertising Age, February 4, 2015]

First off: ROFL about that “investment” trope. Verizon and its partners-in-crime are blatant organized theft on the biggest scale, and, as such, are huge, very active obstacles to the proper, economical investment in and distribution of modern communications infrastructure, activities that are the natural and Constitutionally-mandated endeavors of the United States Postal Service.

Secondly:

O corporate death penalty, where art thou?

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Against “Neoliberalism”

orrery Where and when did what passes for the left swallow “neoliberalism” as the preferred word for “capitalism”?

This linguistic transition is a major case of C. Wright Mills’ liberal practicality, a.k.a. dunder-headed chickening-out by would-be lefties.

It is also a major vector of conceptual error and misdirection.

Not the least of such errors is the presumption that the word “neoliberalism” is “very common, recognizable.”

Balderdash. The word is certainly rampant in the sphere of what remains of the left, but we all know, or at least ought to know, how isolated and ignored we are. In the wider world, to use the term “neoliberalism” is to speak a foreign tongue, as well as to suggest that one’s ideas and claims are so confusing as to need their own special introductions.

Everybody drawing breath knows what capitalism is. “Neoliberalism,” meanwhile, always requires at least a long, convoluted paragraph of explanation as a preface to its further usage.

So, one has to ask: Are we trying to stay moribund?

And while we’re at it, pray tell: When was it that capitalists ever favored or pursued anything but the package of things that supposedly define “neoliberalism”? There remains the powerful, long-running liberal myth of the post-WWII Golden Age of caipitalist acceptance of equality and welfare state programs. That, however, is simply false history. At the level of overclass motives and policy prescriptions, there was then and is now nothing “neo” going in the boardrooms and the private jets.

The Reagan Restoration was — and remains — a real thing (even though it started under Carter), but redoubling is not invention, and laissez faire/free trade (the liberalism of the concept, as distinct from the newer, wider modern meaning as a tag for those who think capitalism isn’t perfect and needs some public correction) has never been the only, or even the main, practical essence of capitalism. The state, despite the ideology and the fake history, has always been right in there, and massively so.

This whole “neoliberalism” thing is, to lift a phrase from E.P. Thompson, an orrery of errors. The sooner we drop it in favor of simplicity, clarity, and directness, the better. Kind of like “consumer.”

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Obummercare in Action

Over 30 million residents of the United States are still uninsured, as planned by the architects of the Heritage Foundation’s successful plan for averting civilized behavior public, single-payer medical insurance.

Those few who gain insurance under RomneyObamacare generally gain shitty insurance with high “deductibles.” According to The Wall Street Journal:

“[T]he share of the population with high-deductible insurance plans has grown significantly since 2009. That year, around 22.5% of respondents had private coverage that required them to pay a larger share of their upfront coverage costs in exchange for a lower premium. In early 2014, some 36% had plans with an annual deductible of at least $1,250 for an individual or $2,500 for a family.”

And those who get this magical gift of terrible coverage for access to the unrestrained U.S. medical racket profession? Here they are in the Soviet pose that comes with their victimization ability to seek new insurance:

line for insurance

And the other big result of RomneyObamacare? Also as planned by Heritage, per today’s New York Times:

“[S]ince the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, the relationship between the Obama administration and insurers has evolved into a powerful, mutually beneficial partnership that has been a boon to the nation’s largest private health plans and led to a profitable surge in their Medicaid enrollment.”

And they say planning can’t work…

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