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Look, guys, pick a line of attack and stick with it

by: Eric B.

Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 10:28:05 AM EDT

Stories I wish the media would report, pt. 14: This morning, Politico is running a story that has this in it.

Land is playing the petcoke card, too, though: She points out that Peters invested in the giant French multinational energy company Total S.A., which also produces petcoke — though not the specific waste that was stockpiled in Detroit. Peters’ investment consisted of $19,000 in stock, according to The Detroit News.

“Congressman Peters says he opposes the Keystone XL Pipeline because of concerns about the substance petcoke, but then we learn that he’s heavily invested in petcoke,” Land said in a statement, adding, “It’s difficult to trust someone like that.”

Yesterday, the MiGOP was sharing this video.

The sum total of the GOP attack line is that Gary Peters is a Wall Street fat cat millionaire who is also heavily invested in dirty energy to the tune of a whopping $19,000.

Dear Ye Olde Emm Ess Emm: Does not compute. They are making two arguments that contradict one another. Time to start doing your job by pointing this out to the public.

Eric B. :: Look, guys, pick a line of attack and stick with it
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Logical consistency is not the GOP's strong suit
Pushing their voters' buttons is.  They won't stick to one line of attack; instead, they'll throw everything they (or their ad agency) they can think of and see what sticks.  If the result is mutually contradictory, so what?

Speaking of campaign ads, I happen to have an entry examining their effectiveness that quotes research from Ohio State University, University of Florida, and the University of Arizona: The psychology of campaign ads plus a bad sign for representative democracy.  People pay attention to ads featuring their own candidate, but tune out ads for the other side.  Also, negative ads only work on people who believe government is effective.  That means that targeting people who don't have trust in government by featuring the candidate they don't like might not work that well.

Greetings from Detroit, Ground Zero of the post-industrial future!

There's nothing wrong
with investing in a product and wanting stricter regulations on said product. There's nothing wrong with being pro-business and being pro-environment.

But whatever, Al Gore is fat. The trope that environmentalists must be hemp-wearing, granola-eating, off-the-grid, tree-hugging hippies is old and tired.

I would respond with an ad that shows support for high-tech, green energy jobs in Michigan. Show wind farms, solar farms, landfill gas reclamation sites, townships and cities that are updating aged infrastructure, brownfield development sites. I'd also show the people in the health and safety field that keep industrial processes running well - mining sites, factories, gas stations, pipelines, hospitals, universities. Those are Michigan jobs and they're greening the state while working with business and regulators. Find the innovators, promote that technology, and support regulations that foster safe, clean growth. That might be a minute long spot, not 30 seconds.  

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