Sunday, November 29, 2009


"Every day... I can greedily, rightfully, seize every ticking moment, and never give one of them back."

"I don't live to live through anyone, ever."

On the surface these commercials are great. There is no equivocation, the sense of life is individualistic and unapologetic. They are classy and they appeal to the kind of strength of character that accepts such ideals... On the surface.

But context is important and in this case the context includes the fact that this company just received one of the most massive bailouts in history. That this is the second such bailout for this company in the last 30 years.

I don't think that these rather Objectivist appeals to individualism are an accident either. Atlas Shrugged is poised to have its best selling year to date, Tea Parties protesting the largest expansion of the welfare state in the US since the "New Deal" were held across the country.

The company is most definitely trying to appeal to that backlash, and it is just as fervently hoping that you and I and all the rest of the people out there don't notice their hypocrisy. They are counting on their audience being as anti-contextual as they are.

"Shhhhhhhhhhhh," they say... "forget the bailout... Forget the fact that your choices made us unable to survive on our own so we told the government to force you to support us. Forget that this already happened in 1979, forget that to us the ideas in these commercials are just a crass advertising ploy"... Yes, forget all that...

But then maybe that is the point, and part and parcel of their problem. As long as this company, and others like it remain anti-contextual themselves, as long as individualism, self reliance and rational self interest are only marketing gimmicks to them, then they are doomed to be moochers, looters, scavengers and thugs, taking the money they are not worthy of earning by force and denying us our freedom and choice through the barrel of a government gun.


Anonymous said...

Howdy Zip,

Since the JEEP management that was on the payroll for the bailout have been replaced with new people, could it be possible that the commercials are actually a twofold marketing plan? One, to attract new customers while the other is aimed at changing their corporate culture?

I'll use General Rick Hillier as an example of changing a failed culture through the use of media. His approach had a twofold effect of promoting a culture change while simultaneously attracting customers (recruits).

We've all been in situations where old management (possible a decades or mores worth) had really screwed the pooch with poor and outdated management practices. However, they were eventually replaced with someone who understood the failures of that business model and subsequently worked long hours to turn it around.


Zip said...

It's possible but I'm not going to bet on it.