October 20th, 2004


Panning to the right

If you don't live in a battleground state, you probably don't see a lot of campaign ads, but in Iowa we're inundated. Every hour on the local broadcast station carries at least 2 or 3 ads, and the Republicans and their fellow travellers are airing more of them than the Democrats.

There's this weird thing about the Bush ads -- all of them have this unifying technique of appearing to pan across a long horizontal set of text messages, pictures and video. Naturally, it pans to the right. But ... what the hell are they doing with that? Is it a purely aesthetic design consideration, or did someone discover that the panning thing is somehow more convincing?

The Republican attack Ads are really shit, in case any one was wondering. They're equal parts groundless assertions, deliberate distortions and outright lies. I know this is politics but is such a load of crap. Not only is it dishonest, it indicates truly how the Republicans feel about rank and file voters -- they have complete contempt for them. They're banking on both making likely Democratic voters feel bad about Kerry and thereby suppressing turnout, and on fooling people who don't have the time or inclination to fact-check commercials.

Oh well. At this point, I'm completely exhausted by the whole process, and now I'm signed up for 5 days of canvassing for America Coming Together. I'm sure looking forward to a few months of complete political apathy win or lose.