Sunday, January 08, 2006

The Liberal Empire Strikes Back

The newest Liberal ads are out and we're seeing hints of the negative campaign to come. Two of the three are certainly negative, although they're not overly nasty and I expect them to get a lot worse if the poll numbers keep slipping for Paul. Here's my view of the trio of new Liberal ads released today:


Supporting Canadian Families

The Message: Paul Martin loves families...and puppies...and sunshine...
Grade: B+
The Ad: Pictures of happy Canadians while the female voice over talks about Liberals policies designed to help families.
My Take: Like most of the Liberal ads, it's a bit all over the place, but it does tie it together with the "families" theme. It also details some specific policies, like the post-secondary plan, that have been overlooked by the media because of various scandals. It's a feel good ad and while it's not as snappy as the "30 million reasons" ads, it hits on specifics.


One Leader

The Message: One leader rocks, one leader sucks, let's pretend Jack Layton doesn't exist
Grade: B-
The Ad: It's 2004 all over again as Iraq and firing guns make a return (although this time, the gun isn't shooting the viewer). The commercial ends with video of the highlight of Paul Martin's tenure as Liberal leader.
My Take: Even though it was disengenuous, I would have given the 2004 ad an "A" because it hit hard on fears people had. Canadians don't believe Harper will take the country into deficit when our surpluses are so big and I think the Liberals will need to hit harder using some of Harper's old quotes because I can't see these claims scaring anyone. I'm also extremely perplexed by what "one leader produced the strongest economy in the Western world" and "one leader would have taken our troops to Iraq" have to do with each other.


Early Learning and Childcare

The Message: Stephen Harper wants to kill children (or so says Mr. "glass is half empty...and poisoned" Andrew Coyne).
Grade: A-
The Ad: This one starts with a Guess Who board of cute children who are erased one at a time while the voice over explains the problems with Harper's daycare proposal.
My Take: I actually like this ad. It's an attack ad, but policy based. It's very well put together with those subliminal visual scare tactics which worked so well last year. The only reason for the minus is because "beer and popcorn" have hurt this issue for the Liberals and I have doubts that child care is an issue which will move votes at this point.

18 Comments:

  • "I expect them to get a lot worse if the poll numbers keep slipping for Paul"

    So you expect them to get a lot worse. Got it.

    :->

    By Blogger Patrick, at 4:53 AM  

  • The Liberals have gone to so much effort over the years to dig up conservative quotes and Harper speeches. Yet, despite reaping the rewards every time a Conservative says something dumb, I have never heard Martin or any other party higher up quote Harper in speech, in a debate and I have never heard Harper quoted in TV ad or radio bit. The following is good gold use it: Stephen Harper: “Any country with Canada’s insecure smugness and resentment can be dangerous.”

    By Blogger Koby, at 5:35 AM  

  • My Take: I actually like this ad. It's an attack ad, but policy based. It's very well put together with those subliminal visual scare tactics which worked so well last year. The only reason for the minus is because "beer and popcorn" have hurt this issue for the Liberals and I have doubts that child care is an issue which will move votes at this point.

    Regarding the childcare ad: I have 2 children under 6 and 1 more on the way. I do not know too many people who have children or had young children in the last 10 years that are voting for the Liberals on this issue. This massive mega-billion promise has been around for a long time and nothing has materialized. I for one do not want the government telling me how to raise my children, let alone convincing other people if I am given money I will spend it on beer and popcorn (i prefer coke and doritos for the record).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:49 AM  

  • Why was my previous comment censored?

    Regarding the childcare ad: I have 2 children under 6 and 1 more on the way. I do not know too many people who have children or had young children in the last 10 years that are voting for the Liberals on this issue. This massive mega-billion promise has been around for a long time and nothing has materialized. I for one do not want the government telling me how to raise my children, let alone convincing other people if I am given money I will spend it on beer and popcorn (i prefer coke and doritos for the record).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:57 AM  

  • I wonder how many of the children are actually Liberal insiders?

    By Blogger A BCer in Toronto, at 9:42 AM  

  • The quality of these spots and the way the message is delivered should be clear to people who fell for the "leak" of stuff before Christmas.

    They also stand in stark contrast to the heavy-handed Conservative approach, even in the "negative" Liberal ones.

    The predictable and lame cracks about "Liberal insiders" are actually tesimony to how effective these spots are.

    The best they can do is go off-topic rather than deal with the straight up, fact-based presentations.

    There are no paid actors pretending to be anything they aren't - like news anchors or people who asked unscripted questions nope.

    If they are paid actors then they are what they are:

    children and parents.

    oh yeah.

    and as for the party? The Liberals are liberals.

    They aren't Conservatives saying anything it takes - including pretending to be moderates - to get elected.

    By Blogger Ed Hollett, at 10:09 AM  

  • I would not consider the child care ad to be negative. Pointing out the positives of your program while pointing out the negatives of your opponent's program is wholly legitimate. I beleive they call it a debate.

    The second One Leader ad on the other hand is negative but only subtly so. It is not over the top like the Conservative negative ads.

    By Blogger ottlib, at 11:43 AM  

  • I don't think they'll be that effective. Most people, especially Ontarians, ahev seen these kinds of ads over and over and . . . Really, pictures of cute kids disappearing, and tanks, and guns, it's all too blatant and emotional plug with no policy behind it. Finally, they'll only work if the Libs can afford to air them. I haven't seen any yet.

    By Anonymous Feisty, at 12:08 PM  

  • Did people notice the number of Ads that are focus on Goodale's hard work in Sask. - I guess this means Goodale believes he is on his way out and need all the support the party can give him.

    By Anonymous Gary McHale, at 12:14 PM  

  • Ah, their attack ads have always been good. I just think that a large portion of the population is going to discount anything the Liberals say, this election.

    Off topic, the latest "Liberal costing of CPC programs" is on their website. As usual, they have phony surpluses as a starting point. The first comment on the post also has a very valid point:

    http://www.thiscanada.com/2006/01/08/liberal-funny-money-again/

    Enjoy, Erik

    By Anonymous Erik Sorenson, at 12:56 PM  

  • I've been listening to a talk radio show on CKUA here in Edmonton and former provincial tory cabinet minister John Oldring is predicting a Tory majority this time.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:14 PM  

  • Well, maybe "predicting" is too strong--more like raising the possibility of a majority due to gains in Ontario and Quebec.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:17 PM  

  • Update: The Liberals and the CBC have been snookered royally by the CPC. See here, particularly the update at the bottom which shows that the Conference Board of Canada has audited the CPC platform costs!

    http://www.thiscanada.com/2006/01/08/liberal-funny-money-again/

    Should make for a VERY interesting Monday night debate.

    By Anonymous Erik Sorenson, at 4:02 PM  

  • I think the Liberals are in a pretty sorry state when they have to dredge up the 2004 commercials and try to utilize the same old, same old scare tactics on Canadians.
    Isn't the Iraq thing a dead letter by now? Also, given the well-known and well-circulated "three comments of doom" made by Martin expressing his personal preference on Canada-in-Iraq, is this really such a good idea? It's really sad when they have to try and build a counterfactual argument that is now three years old on something the Conservatives have come out openly and said they wouldn't have done, and try to use it as a knockout punch. It reeks of desperation, and I hope that people turn on this ad as quickly as they turned on the "face ads" used by the PCs back in 1993. I don't care if I appear in the ad (final shot of Martin at the Libs' leadership convention), not even my appearance makes this a good, effective ad.

    By Blogger RGM, at 4:15 PM  

  • I'm excited.

    The Liberals are so badly behind with such an inept leader that the negative ads (which everyone agrees they must run) should become very entertaining indeed!

    - CPC supporter.

    By Anonymous Chris from Victoria, BC, at 5:47 PM  

  • The personal development industry has never been bigger! It consists of a myriad of authors basically telling us how to improve our lives. We are constantly being told self help and self improvement has never been easier. New techniques, gadgets and potions adorn the shelves of new age shops and the 1 billion dollar industry, that is personal development, offers many different approaches to help better our lives. They offer ways to increase our bounty and ultimately alter our own reality. A great example of this is how to develop a Prosperity Consciousness. But does this state really exist and if it does will it bring the effortless unlimited wealth promised?
    A lot has been written about prosperity and how to attain it. We have been told by many religious traditions and every personal development guru that the Universersal Source (God, Spirit, Cosmic Mind or whatever label you chose to give it) is boundless wealth. We are also told that abundance, wealth and prosperity are our birthright! Why then are so many people ill, broke, frustrated and unfulfilled? Can a person really develop a prosperity consciousness and effortlessly attract wealth? Well as with everything in life there is only one way to find out. Test it for yourself!

    Before we can attain and then test the effectiveness of having a prosperity consciousness we need to understand some basic truths. Let's start by explaining three fundamentals of personal development namely; 1. The Universal Source is all wealth, abundance and prosperity; 2. Prosperity is our birthright; 3. You get more of what you focus on.

    1. Why are we told that the Universal Source is unlimited wealth? - Because the Universal Source is the consciousness of the Universe - a universe that is still expanding. It is the driving force behind physical reality. It created everything you see, hear, touch and smell as well as all that we are unaware of (microwaves, radiation, air etc.). It has been stated in religious and metaphysical traditions that this intelligence is not only the Source of everything but that it is also the substance of it! It creates the Universe from itself! It is omnipresent (everywhere present). That means that the entire seen and unseen aspects of the universe are a part of this Universal Source. Science reaffirms this theory as it states that nothing is solid and everything is just one mass of pure energy that vibrates at different frequencies and gives the illusion of separateness.
    So we can now claim that the Universal Source is unlimited wealth, abundance and prosperity with some belief. For if this Source is the very substance of everything then it is all the wealth, abundance and prosperity that exists at this very moment!
    Ok so far? Now lets look at the second point - prosperity is our birthright.

    2. If this Universal Intelligence is the source and substance of all things then there can be only one intelligence in the Universe. Jesus said to his disciples "know ye not that you are the temple of the living God?" Buddha attained enlightenment and "oneness". The list of these religious teachings are too numerous to mention but their message remains the same - God (Universal Substance) resides within and around us. It's very substance makes up our physical body and the world around us - "For in him we live, move and have our being" Acts17:28. Therefore, if this Universal Source is at the very core of our being and is the substance from which we take physical form then it stands to reason that we are connected to everyone else and in fact everything else around us - we are a part of all the wealth, abundance and prosperity of the universe. Just as your hand or foot is a part of your body, so every grain of sand, blade of grass, wisp of wind, bar of gold and brick that is laid in a mansion is part of you. The unlimited wealth of the universe is yours for the claiming. It is already yours, always has been and always will be. It is a part of you.
    Ok let's go the third point - you get more of what you focus on.

    3. "It never rains but it pours", is a saying I have used myself in the past. Have you ever wondered why such a statement appears to be true? Well metaphysics and religion tell us that "as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he" or as Job cried out to God "For that which I greatly feared has come upon me". What we focus our conscious attention on increases! Don't believe me? Test it for yourself! If you can muster up the strength to do it then think in negative terms for a week. Judge everything that happens to you in negative terms and think only of a negative outcome and watch what happens in your world!!! This is a relatively easy experiment as we are conditioned to think negatively by the world. A word of warning though - once you prove that your focus determines your reality stop thinking negative thoughts as best you can.
    I will not go into the 'hows' of why our focus has such a profound influence on our lives (that would be the subject of a book or perhaps a future article) just prove to yourself that it does. A clue can be found in the teachings of Jesus when he said "The Kingdom of heaven is within".
    So now we have the three principles of the prosperity consciousness explained let's put it to work. The attainment of a prosperity consciousness is relatively simple - just think on the first two principles until you fully understand them and integrate them into your consciousness. As you focus on them you will discover that your feelings of lack disappear and you begin to feel a connection with everything around you. It is really just an attitude shift - nothing metaphysical or mystical about it at all. You begin to consciously realize that everything is a part of you. Your focus changes from poverty to wealth.
    If it helps make a list of affirmations that correspond to the two principles outlined e.g. "God is the Source and substance of everything", "I am at one with everyone and everything around me", "I am a part of all the wealth, abundance and prosperity of the Universe" etc. Don't just rhyme them off in a parrot like manner, think on them and realize the scientific or spiritual truths behind them.

    Will it work? Well I can say now that if you follow the above instructions a real change will happen in you. You will start to see the beauty of the world and the unlimited resources that are available within and around you. Will you attain wealth, abundance and prosperity? Test it for yourself! personal development

    By Blogger fish, at 7:48 PM  

  • By Blogger 柯云, at 1:49 AM  

  • By Blogger xjd7410@gmail.com, at 2:52 AM  

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