Thursday, October 16, 2008

Obama Campaign is Cooler

Both campaigns, Obama's and McCain's, have had their problems. But there is no excuse for being unstylish. When it comes to style, Obama is over the top. That excess of style is a symptom of the fevered messianic obsession Obama's followers have with their man. It has even gone global. Here is something from a Paris fashion show.

No one expects every political candidate to excel in these frivolities. But putting good graphics on button, stickers and signs should not be a problem. Look at the campaign buttons for the two tickets, however. McCain-Palin offers little variety, and what there is is staid and conventional.

Obama's operation gives a wide selection of hip stuff. That colorful "horizon" symbol speaks volumes. Obama's nice looking family is pictured in tasteful black and white. "Yes We Can," vapid though it may be, shows up in various forms, including on a square button where it is superimposed over O and Michelle doing a fist bump.

The buttons, stickers, hats, banners and other gear come from the campaign itself and the shipping costs are low.

McCain-Palin offers links to two companies that sell his stuff (collectors ask: do they count as official items?) and shipping costs for the small purchaser are prohibitive. The "Country First" button is dignified, as befits the message. But the Palin Power button with a lipstick in place of the letter is just stupid. Palin Power? What power is that, and what reason does that give me to vote for her?

When I was at university in the early 1980s, I remember being surprised to find an artsy Reagan button. It was tastefully small, and it featured simply the name Reagan underscored by a sliver of flag. (In 1972, Nixon had some nice buttons too. And a catchy song.) I assumed that any artistic sense inclined one's heart to the left. Perhaps the unique appeal of the Obama candidacy has managed to attract everyone who is inspired by the beautiful into his corner or over to his fringe.

Oabama also has ridiculous videos of people from Hollywood and the music industry worshiping him and praying to him, like most recently "American Prayer."

I would think this would scare off normal people, but I'm the last one to know what normal people think.

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