For voters who are not “brand loyal” Democrats or Republicans, mendacity is the new norm regarding the way politicians respond to all sex scandals.
Whatever is said by either side and then reported by the media becomes a partisan discussion where one position is right and the other wrong. This approach misses the point shared by most Americans — both parties (politicians) are to blame and all accused need to be investigated no matter their popularity, status, or party.
Consider the way brand-loyal Democrats have reacted to Republican Judge Roy Moore who is running for the U.S. Senate against their candidate Doug Jones.
In a country where the “fair-minded” constantly remind us that we are “innocent until proven guilty” no such assumption is made regarding Roy Moore. Thirty-year-plus allegations of illicit sexual contact with a minor have been made, which must be investigated, after the election. This will establish the guilt or innocence of the Judge. And if found guilty, a just punishment must be sentenced to the guilty party.
When considering the sexual peccadillos of Sen. Al Franken, Rep. John Conyers, Charlie Rose, Harvey Weinstein as well as those congressional members who have had harassment settlements paid by taxpayers, we observe a different biopsy from Democrats.
Regarding Sen. Franken, Democrats point to the expeditious way: the good senator apologized and his use of an effective communications strategy to get ahead of the story effectively. They also remind us of the photos taken and whether the groping of a woman while sleeping was staged. These politically blinded supporters forget what Groucho Marx once said regarding denial and being caught in a mistake, “Do you believe me or your lying eyes.”
For those in Middle America, these excuses by Democratic apologists are at best silly and indicate one thing: Franken, along with Representative Conyers, should quit now. And if he — Franken, and the other Democrat, Congressman Conyers — don’t, why then should Judge Roy Moore remove himself from the Alabama race? For the non-affiliated, “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander” as the saying goes and makes perfect sense to those outside the beltway.
To make matters more opinionated and cause even more acrimony by both sides regarding the Judge Moore “child molestation” controversy is a new film, “Call Me by Your Name” celebrated by The New York Times as a Critic’s Pick.
This flick romanticizes the relationship of a 24-year-old male graduate student with a precocious 17-year-old boy whose parents tacitly agree to the affair. This film has become a favorite among the artistic and will only fuel the flames of both sides of the Judge Moore argument that sexual contact with children is not an option no matter what side you may share.
One item should be mentioned regarding this film. Age differences become non-existent over time for most of us. However, children under age (even adolescents) must always be protected in any discussion of this kind and is the issue. Same-sex romantic films are not being criticized. Rather, it’s the ages of the participants that need attention.
It appears that the endemic “sex scandals” outlined above may be hurting both the Democratic and Republican brands. That neither side has a clue regarding the long-term damage to their respective political parties is an understatement. Time will tell just how toxic it has been and its long-term effects.
One possible outcome when utlizing the “marketing and branding lens” is that the electorate can become disenchanted with the process and could search for a more “personality-driven model.” This template would see personal brands (personalities) becoming more important than the party in our politics. In addition the use of marketing/branding augmenting communications/messaging would be integrated to ensure best outcomes.
Personality candidate types would then focus on connecting with constituents rather than outlining policy. And, they would provide segmented voters with deliverables rather than “ponderables.”
In short, these “new candidate types” would emphasize their efforts to targeted voters so that these segmented voters can decide for themselves whether they like the brands they observe or not. And when this is done, aspirants with their respective teams will assess their success and then understand that it is always easier when one has marketing in mind. Yes, even in politics.
Today’s Marketing & Branding Lens Thought
"Good things come to those who wait. Better things come to those who don’t give up. And the best things come to those who believe."
Dr. John Tantillo is a marketing and branding expert, known as The Marketing Doctor. JT utilizes his doctoral skills in applied research psychology to analyze the issues and personalities of the day utilizing his marketing and branding lens. This provides his readers with additional insight needed to understand the “new normal” in politics, news, and culture. Dr. Tantillo is the OpEd writer for Political Vanguard. He is the author of "People Buy Brands, Not Companies,” and the Udemy course "Go Brand Yourself!" You can follow him on Twitter @marketingdoctor and at Facebook.com/dr.johntantillo. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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