I have, for the longest time, been bewildered when somesuch politician decides to denounce the use of anonymous attack ads at the same exact moment that he is subject criticism from them. It’s like when a politician complains about the media frenzy surrounding a scandal, as though there’s no scandal at issue, simply media hysteria. It’s enough to make you reach for the smelling salts.
So we return to the soap opera of Chris Christie’s New Jersey goober-natorial bid, in which Christie’s media strategy is “Shriek and point!” at whatever mouse seems to be running across the speaking platform. I was only joking when I said that Christie would feign indigestion at the sign of the employment numbers, but his people are actually sounding like schoolyard toughies waiting to straighten out some wayward nerd in the corner for making a smart-alec comment.
One of Christie’s own hardnosed bloggers (remember, he likes to hire tough guys) ran to the Lonegan campaign and asked for a public denunciation of the clever Godfather-themed but *gasp* anonymous YouTube video that provides sources and context for a variety of quotes pointing to a questionable record.
Full stop. Here‘s the video:
Okay. Now here’s how Christie’s guy handled it:
While I’m hesitant* to give this gutless coward** the recognition and attention he so desperately craves, I do so for a reason. I want to know if Steve Lonegan or any of the integral members of his campaign staff condone* the actions of this individual or individuals.
It is my sincere**** hope that nobody with ties to the Lonegan campaign has anything to do with any of this and that somebody from their camp would step forward and denounce the actions of whomever***** is responsible for this content publicly******.
Footnotes from the Orwellian Guide to Political Language as Deception:
* I’m hesitant to say this, but I’ll say it anyway. Saying you’re hesitant is like lying, especially if you wind up doing the thing you were supposedly hesitant to do at the start of the sentence.
** When a person in power calls an anonymous person a gutless coward for criticizing them, he’s simply proving the person right for maintaining his anonymity.
*** I want to know whether there’s a tooth fairy or if some creepy individual is sneaking into my room at night to give me money for teeth. I also want to know why I’m still losing and growing teeth. Christie’s guy has different thoughts, and I’m okay with that.
**** Undoubtedly, this blogger is up at nights, tearing out his own hair, cursing the moon and hoping, praying, and gnashing his teeth at the thought that some kindly Lonegan campaigner might have wandered astray with a copy of Final Cut Pro and wound up, in a drunken stupor, losing himself in the production of an anonymous attack ad. Yea, the Headless Video Editor stalks the night and preys upon the young. Do not let it possess you!
***** Small grammatical thing on which the commenters (bless your hearts) may correct me. Isn’t “whomever” just plain wrong in this? If the clause is the object of “actions of” wouldn’t “whoever” be correct? I know it’s New Jersey, but c’mon.
****** So the only way someone who opposes you gets your kudos is by coming out and condemning things that make *you* look bad? That’s a good trick. I didn’t even know you could do that. SO THAT’S HOW MCCAIN LOST! Noted.
So there’s the lesson. I guess. If faced with negative ads, don’t respond, simply say they’re unfair. And don’t say how. The ironic thing is that when you do this, some bloggers (me) feel compelled to post about the response, which then compels them (still me) to post about the original ad. Which means that Christie’s blogger succeeded only in asserting that he’s really tough on people who do not have names, while the anonymous “gutless coward” succeeded in getting more attention for his gutless and cowardly YouTube piece. Srsly?
And this stuff is coming (one assumes) from his own side. I’m sure the Dems will go easier though. Why wouldn’t they?
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