I understand that people feel like they need to pick the lesser of the evils in deciding who to vote for; we have all faced a vote like that a time or two in our voting lives. While I am not staunchly pro-Hillary, I have a serious problem with one of the current anti-Hillary arguments that are making the rounds.
Political campaigns are an exercise in brand management. The questions asked inside campaign operations are similar to those asked inside marketing boardrooms: what types of issues should we support? What do we stand for? Is our message digestible to consumers and differentiated from our competitors?
The "big tent" factor of both American parties and the constraints of the "winner-take-all" presidency makes for some particularly strange bedfellows. But is the two-party system under attack this election cycle? It certainly seems so -- and it could well be to Secretary Hillary Clinton's advantage.
When some may think it's best to mind their own business when a very close friend is about to make a really bad decision, I believe it's important to let them know. With the strong possibility that the highly divisive Donald Trump will be the Republican candidate for the United States presidency, it is often out of friendship that many Canadians feel compelled to share their concerns with their neighbours to the south. After all, as friends, we don't want walls between us.
Hillary Clinton could not be in a better position for the November election. Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, who appear to stand in her way, are actually helping her to position herself for victory. Issues and ideology aside Hillary is way ahead of the pack in the the game of political chess and should have no trouble winning in November.
Canada has received a rebuke from a United Nations treaty monitoring body for its lack of respect for human rights. The Human Rights Committee (HRC) released a lengthy list of issues it cited as concerning as part of its concluding observations on the country's review of civil and political rights. Included was an important reference to the federal government's efforts to silence human rights organizations and advocacy through the Income Tax Act -- a welcome expression of support for charities under audit.
Republicans have to reinvent themselves. The tactics and issues that have worked for them for more than three decades have failed. Democrats and progressives have a rare opportunity to permanently shift the debate on several key issues. America is at a crossroads, more divided than ever and trying to decide what kind of nation it wants to be now that it is no longer the world's lone superpower.
During those four years there had been much sadness, wailing and gnashing of teeth and beating of breasts in the land as the tribe's riches and power ebbed, and the people lost faith in their tribe. So therefore, many leaders did arise who did each say unto the people that he alone was strong and of good courage and should be their leader to lead them out of the slough of despond and into the land of milk and honey...
Most of us are relieved the U.S. election is over -- listening to the hyperbole of the campaign for so many months has been difficult even for Canadians who don't hear the ads and don't have the same emotional reaction to the candidates. But there are some lessons to be learned for non-politicians working on their personal brands.
At the end of the day, this "close" election was not really that close. While the race was closer than 2008, Romney's routes to victory proved limited and, ultimately, impossible. The outcome of this election will likely raise serious questions about the influence of the right wing Tea Party in the Republican Party.
Imagine the following scene with me, if you will: Marine One lands amid a fury of fireworks in the middle of Grant Park in Chicago. President Obama is wearing a full flight-suit as he struts from the LZ up onto a stage already occupied by Bruce Springsteen and Jay-Z. As he makes his way behind the podium, George Clooney unveils a giant "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED" banner.
A successful Obama presidency -- one that trims the debt, shrinks the deficit, reforms entitlements, and spurs GDP growth is one dangerously likely to revive the old Canadian demons of insecurity and inferiority. Regardless of how much it may satiate our fiscal interests, an economically resurgent America almost certainly means a return to second-place status for this country.
Tuesday, election day, is going to be a big day, there's no doubt about it. Americans when they go to the polls will be deciding the direction their country takes -- on the economy, health care, big or small government, taxes, marriage, abortion and foreign policy -- for the next four years. But I'd like to talk about what to my mind is an even bigger day -- Wednesday, the day after the election -- because one very important thing in America needs to change and Wednesday is when it has to start.
The presence of 15,000 journalists in Tampa and Charlotte for the conventions was ridiculous but even wackier is the size of "Nation PR." Likely bigger than Newark or its governor, this is an industry of propagandists, bloggers, twitterers, scandal-mongers, pundits, spin doctors, pollsters, journalist-partisans who pen biased op-eds and columns, campaign operatives and dewy-eyed "Monicas" who will do anything for the boss. Nation PR never sleeps and now the fun, for the rest of us, begins as they launch their saturation bombing campaign on US voters to capture victory in November.
Friday morning brought news that the Harper administration had officially unrecognized the Islamic Republic of Iran. So rest easy. Or panic. Harper has either made one of the worst diplomatic blunders of our time or given us a head start in fleeing the terrors of World War III. It all depends on what source you consider more credible on issues of national security -- Al Jazeera or Sun TV.
I really don't care if Clint Eastwood was stoned, drunk or at 82, just plain senile. He was the only speaker over the three nights of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, who I couldn't stop watching. Here's my professional report card on how the different speakers used the 'prompter.
It's not that Americans aren't smart enough to know the bile spewed in super-PAC ads consists largely of lies. Surely they suspect Romney could care less about them, and his presidency would hinge solely on placating the so-called "one-percenters" who really run America; it's just there's something omnipotent about the way unlimited amounts of money slowly, steadily steer our thoughts and desires.