Democrats Starting to Win the PR War (Finally!)
When you're dealing with Right and Wrong — or even Sleazy vs. Sleazier — it shouldn’t matter who comes up with better one-liners. But unfortunately, in a country saturated with slogans and bumper-stickers, it comes down a battle of slick PR and catchy phrases.
From the Vietnam war right up through Iraqmire, armchair warriors have claimed that criticizing the war equals “aiding and abetting the enemy.” Any critics of American foreign policy are tarnished with “Hating America” and “Blame America First.” Unquestioning devotion to George W. Bush translates into “Support Our Troops.” Etc.
But lately some Democrats have actually scored some rhetorical points. Senator Joseph Biden said “It’s not the American people or the U.S. Congress who are emboldening the enemy. It’s the failed policy of this president — going to war without a strategy, going to war prematurely.” Yeah!!! Bam! Pow! Take that, chickenhawks!
And John Conyers told a crowd of anti-war demonstrators: “George Bush has a habit of firing military leaders who tell him the Iraq war is failing. He can’t fire you.”
And as you’ve probably heard (God it’s fun to kick an asshole when he's down), Bush’s poll ratings actually went down right after his State of the Union speech last week.
Again, slogans and rhetoric shouldn’t matter. Style shouldn’t triumph over substance. Unfortunately…
But now, after several decades of Republican PR victories, the tide seems to be turning. Instead of answering Republican soundbites with incoherent sputtering — or trying to be Republican Lite — Democrats are actually firing off some good soundbites of their own. It’s a necessary evil.