Wednesday, April 07, 2010

The Semiotics of the Strange :: Carly Fiorina's Attack Video


I saw this Carly Fiorina attack video {below} against Republican rival for Barbara Boxer's US Senate seat, Tom Campbell, a while back in February and thought about blogging about it as an ultimate fail. For those who may not now, Carly was one the CEO of Hewlett-Packard who held the reigns during a transitioning time for the company and got into a proxy fight with William Hewitt and was eventually forced to resign. She was once dubbed the "anti-Steve Jobs" Fast forward to 2008 when she joined the McCain presidential campaign and was rumoured to be a possible choice for his running mate. She announced her campaign for U.S. Senate and her prospects looked good until Tom Campbell entered the primary race.

The video was  jaw-droppingly bad and amateurish. The video rattles off various arguments about how Tom Campbell is a career politician and a "fiscal conservative in name only" or FCINO, a play on the "Republican in name only" or RINO label. The video portrays Tom Campbell as a demon sheep with glowing red eyes. I must admit it made me think of the old school cylons on the original Baaaah-tlestar Galactica. If this is meant to be a satirical jab, it's poorly executed to say the least. It comes across as strange and confusing. I couldn't help but think, "who greenlighted this? Was the PR person on vacation?"

I'm not sure the "wolf in sheep's clothing" metaphor is a good one. Who are the sheep? Republicans or Tom Campbell-supporting Republicans? That distinction isn't clear. It looks like it's saying, "We Republicans are sheep and there's a wolf in our midst." While this might NOT be the intent, it opens the Carly campaign up for ridicule.



Canadians might be interested in David Frum's cheerleading from north of 49ºN in the National Post {with an audio link}. He did call her out on her lack of specifics regarding policy, but it was a softball interview.

Twitterversion:: Republican Carly Fiorina attack vid. against Tom Campbell in bid for Boxer's Senate seat is a bizarre & confusing fail. http://url.ie/5o4y   @Prof_K

Song::  Beth Orton-'Devil Song'


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