(BISMARCK, ND) – This column from The Forum’s Jack Zaleski speaks for itself.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
- Worst spot so far: Cramer. He uses his mother and two kids to assure North Dakotans he won’t mess with Medicare.
- The ad’s premise is false. Cramer has always wanted to mess with Medicare—cut benefits, privatize portions of the program, etc. He can’t fudge his record, although he is one of the best fudge masters in Washington, D.C.
- The ad relies on shrewdly ambiguous weasel-words: He will protect benefits for oldies like his mom (and me) and make sure Medicare is there for younger generations, like the kids in the ad. Sounds great. Notice the distinction? The distortion? He is vague about future Medicare for people currently in the workforce (would he gut benefits?), while he preaches to oldsters who are on the program now, who vote, that he’s their Medicare evangelist. It’s not blatant deceit; it’s duplicitous half-truth.
- The fib is bad, but exploitation of mom is worse. She probably wants to help her son. It’s what moms do. But in the ad she looks painfully ill at ease. It’s uncomfortably obvious she would rather not be at center stage in a phony drama. Unconvincing ad. Kinda creepy.