If anybody would know what makes television-watching Americans tick, it’s the guy who puts together viral video campaigns for politicians. And boy, does he know.
Ladd Ehlinger Jr. — if that is his real name — is a “director, producer and writer” who is using his triple-threat skills to affect political change. He’s the guy making the spots for 70 year-old Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank’s opponent in his upcoming re-election, a 35 year-old Republican upstart named Sean Bielat. The idea with making Bielat’s campaign spots viral videos, according to the New York Times:
If everything goes according to plan, the ensuing videos — one 30-second spot for television, and two longer cuts for the Web, Mr. Ehlinger said — will catapult Mr. Bielat to online stardom, attract more mainstream news media coverage and donations, and bring him closer to a seat in Congress.
Great. So now politicians are now battling cat videos in the war for media supremacy. But! Talk about “burying the lead” here. Listen to Mr. Ehlinger Jr. wax poetic on what makes Television Watching America tick, in the last paragraph of the Times story on him:
Later, Mr. Ehlinger reflected on what makes a good Internet ad. “A television ad, you’re buying all the fat, lazy people who are too stupid to change the channel or mute the television set during commercials,” he said. “Your money on the Internet ad is going to make it interesting, exciting, something where people will say, ‘Hey, dude, take a look at this, man.’ “
And yes, this is how your political campaigns are being waged: over the people who are too fat, lazy, or stupid to change the channel from a bad political attack ad. Everything wrong with the Tea Party, with the people backing them, the people voting for them, and the people in front of them can be distilled down to that quote. Rick Astley, Cat Videos, American Politics. None of those now don’t belong. Congratulations, Americans. Your politicians are trying to win elections by “RickRolling” you.
There’s really nothing else to say here, except, well, this: