the absurd observers

Thursday, July 28, 2005

McCain PAC in action

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John McCain has reactivated his PAC to pay for travel and to allow him to contribute to other candidates' campaigns. His PAC is named "Straight Talk America", which is apparently a derivation of the name of his 2000 primary campaign bus. Naming a PAC after a bus seems like the beginning of a decent idea. Most PACs seem to have names like "Freedom Commission" and other appealing terms that don't offer much in the way of substance. And if there's one thing I'm about, it's substance. So, here are my substance laden ideas for naming a PAC:
  1. I would suggest maybe naming PACs after personal triumphs, to remind voters that the candidate has been successful in life. For unsuccessful people, this could be difficult, and might lead to people naming their PACs "High School honors English B+" or "making decent pie crust". For the successful candidates, however, this would be a great approach. Think "Saved people's lives", or "Filthy Rich", or "makes excellent pie crust."
  2. Fashion the name of the PAC as a riddle. The DaVinci Code of PAC names. Something more than just an anagram. Maybe the name would lead people to an opposition candidate's dirty secrets. I don't know. I'm just brainstorming here. At worst, it would hold the public's attention - "why is this guy's PAC called 'A wet moose drinks at midnight'?"
  3. Name a PAC after a popular film character. This approach would invite people to identify with someone that has made them laugh, or someone that they are at least interested in. I think this would be a great way to bring in new donors, that would otherwise not be interested in contributing. Think: "Senator John Blutarsky PAC", "Frank the Tank PAC", "Obi Wan Kanobi you're our only hope - the PAC".

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Donuts propel Dan to victory

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Recently, I wrote Bruce Reed of Slate's "The Has-Been" political blog an email with my suggestion for how to choose which presidential candidate a political operative should work for. My suggestion, which I will summarize as outside the box, is explained by Reed at the above link. He dubbed it "the Homer Plan". I like to think that has a ring to it, much like the Monroe Doctrine and the Teapot Dome Scandal. My approach to decision making was put in a head -to-head battle with someone that decided to think of realistic decision making criteria, and my idea was overwhelmingly supported by the Has-Been readership, to the tune of a victory with 93% of the votes. That makes me feel like Mayor Daley.

This just goes to show that sometimes the good guys win. And sometimes those good guys are covered in donut crumbs.

I'd like to thank all my friends, family, colleagues, donut lovers, doughnut lovers, and fellow food sculptors for their support.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Unleash the Tucson Raging Grannies

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I apologize for the recent lack of posts, but we've been busy with work lately. And even though I will be working all weekend, I still found the time this afternoon to bring you this hard hitting news story. Apparently some elderly women in Arizona are getting political. After getting arrested, one woman explained why her group, the self-described "Tucson Raging Grannies", was booked for trespassing at a local army recruiting center:

"We went in asking to be sent to Iraq so our kids and grandchildren can be sent
home, but rather than listening to us, they called the police," said 74-year-old
Betty Schroeder.

Let's ignore the political issues involved, and the moral issues, and the practical issues, and all other complicated aspects of this story. I think it's important that we address what sent the bagel chips and hummus out my nose when I read this headline: the name "Tucson Raging Grannies". No punk rock band, hurricane, weather channel-named-blizzard, professional wrestler, muppet, politician, fast food promotion, tagline, slogan, or nasal spray has ever donned such an impressive name.

If anything, this name will carry these grannies into the media spotlight. How could it not? Is it possible to read the words "Raging Grannies" and not picture a bunch of elderly women going beserk in an IHOP because the syrup ran out? I think not. And if you can avoid that mental image it is only because you are imagining a horde of grandmothers tipping over slot machines and throwing their teeth at the pitboss in a casino.

"Raging Grannies" want to go to war? Who's going to stop them? How would you stop a Raging Granny? I mean, an ornery granny, maybe you could talk her down. An angry granny, maybe you could appease her with some jello or a romance novel. But Raging Grannies, well, they're in a rage! They are out of control, looting stores, getting tattoos, piercing their wigs, and cursing like sailors. Soon they'll be Raging Granny biker gangs, bouncers, security details, and, if they get their way, special forces.