Obama’s 100 Days – The Mad Men Did Well

from John Pilger, April 30, 2009

The BBC’s American television soap Mad Men offers a rare glimpse of the power of corporate advertising. The promotion of smoking half a century ago by the “smart” people of Madison Avenue, who knew the truth, led to countless deaths. Advertising and its twin, public relations, became a way of deceiving dreamt up by those who had read Freud and applied mass psychology to anything from cigarettes to politics. Just as Marlboro Man was virility itself, so politicians could be branded, packaged and sold.


Much of the American establishment loathed Bush and Cheney for exposing, and threatening, the onward march of America’s “grand design”, as Henry Kissinger, war criminal and now Obama adviser, calls it. In advertising terms, Bush was a “brand collapse” whereas Obama, with his toothpaste advertisement smile and righteous clichés, is a godsend. At a stroke, he has seen off serious domestic dissent to war, and he brings tears to the eyes, from Washington to Whitehall. He is the BBC’s man, and CNN’s man, and Murdoch’s man, and Wall Street’s man, and the CIA’s man. The Madmen did well.


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    • Edger on May 4, 2009 at 12:41 pm


    • Arctor on May 5, 2009 at 2:21 am

    Bush-Cheney and out of nowhere comes Barack Obama, obscure Illinois state legislator, now keynote speaker at Dem convention, now President. FISA law passed, wiretapping defended, torture not prosecuted, permanent bases in Iraq for the 50,000 troops that will remain, and a renewed effort in Afghanistan where we can keep our ready forces to strike anywhere in the Middle East. But no, let’s enjoy our first 100 days and oh, yes, there’s Bo! He’s soooo cute.

    PS I supported Obama financially and enthusiasticaly and it pains me to face my reality here. others can rail at my cynicism, but I’be been around long enough to call bullshit when I smell it!

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