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Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler » Collateral Damage in Advertising

…or “how you might end up pissing on the wrong people while trying to make a valid point.”

LC & IB Bluto is righteously offended by one of Move America Forward’s spots, criticizing the PC nonsense of airport security screening. (Watch the ad if you haven’t already, since nothing I say will make much sense unless you do).

His anger is based, understandably so, on how the spot portrays the TSA officers as bumbling morons harassing a little old lady over her tweezers while letting obvious terrorists file through unmolested in the background.

I understand why he’s pissed off, particularly seeing as how he used to work for the TSA, which makes it personal.

I understand because it’s quite possible to watch it and come away with the notion that it is the rank and file of the TSA that are responsible for the no-profiling, it’s better to sacrifice 3,000 Americans than to offend CAIR, PC, dhimmi bullcrap that is eventually going to kill a lot more of us unless it is stopped.

The ad is trying to make a VERY valid point, namely that airport security is a politically correct joke, and a particularly lethal one at that, but it fails to make clear that the responsibility for the whole sorry mess lies with the empty gasbags in Washington DC, the cowardly clusterfucks on the Potomac who are so obsessed with pandering to Pisslam that they’ll happily let another 9/11 or worse happen, as long as it doesn’t lead to a disapproving letter from CAIR.

Yes, I agree completely with Move America Forward that the TSA and their guidelines, rules and regs need a purge, but it would be helpful if M.A.F. would be a little more careful about who they aim at before firing.

The REAL morons are sitting in airconditioned offices in DC, NOT standing next to a gate at an airport near you.

THEY’RE the ones that need to be fired.

And the sooner the better too.

31 Responses to “Collateral Damage in Advertising”
  1. Sir Christopher Comment by Sir Christopher UNITED STATES

    Move America Forward Towards the Edge of the Cliff

  2. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    Thank you Misha. I’m sure that there are incompetents and screwups within a 50,000 member federal agency. But using them to represent the whole would be like some moonbat group criticizing Iraq policy by showing nothing but Abu Ghraib.

    Most people would probably be surprised at how many uniformed TSA people are ex-military and ex-cops. They don’t deserve this treatment.

  3. MoMinuteMan Comment by MoMinuteMan UNITED STATES

    The ad is trying to make a VERY valid point, namely that airport security is a politically correct joke, and a particularly lethal one at that, but it fails to make clear that the responsibility for the whole sorry mess lies with the empty gasbags in Washington DC, the cowardly clusterfucks on the Potomac who are so obsessed with pandering to Pisslam that they’ll happily let another 9/11 or worse happen, as long as it doesn’t lead to a disapproving letter from CAIR.

    That was the first thought that ran thru my head when I first saw this ad. There are fuckwits in every outfit, but the troops have to do what the BRASS tells ‘em to do, so the brass is the responsible party for failures in operational planning.

    I find it ironic that we have bloviating pricks in D.C. that will piss and moan about “Rulers for Life” in shit-hole countries while we have the same problem RIGHT HERE in Bizarro World. Wanna know who to vote for?? ANYBODY who WOULDN’T want the fucking job.

  4. LC RobertHuntingdon Comment by LC RobertHuntingdon

    The question, however, is how do you show the stupidity of harassing the little old lady (which IS one of the big problems, after all) and yet show who the major blame lies on? I suppose you could have them appologizing to the little old lady for the policy set by the wanking punters on the Potomic… but would that really “get attention”?

    And yes, I chose the word “major” deliberately, because the TSA rank-and-file may not deserve PRIMARY blame for that horse crap, but they ARE participating in it. There comes a time when an order is so brainless, so utterly idiotic and patently wrong when you have to stand up and say NO. If the entire rank-and-file stood up on thier hind legs and gave the empty headed gasbags the finger, I bet you policy would be “reviewed” a bit pretty stinking quick.

    RH

  5. bigdicksplace Comment by bigdicksplace

    “airport security is a politically correct joke, and a particularly lethal one at that”

    You nailed it, because that’s all it ever will be.

  6. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Sorry, Misha and Bluto, I loved the ads. They would have been effective, but they’ll never be used unfortunately, as they were turned down. (”Too hot for TV.”)

    I think we’ve forgotten about all the breaches of security and improperly hired persons’ activities. It’s one thing to target peons for the sake of abuse, but I think this ad was criticizing the policies by using charicatures of the pawns’ bureaucrat-ordained actions.

    The truth is, there have been a lot of bad policies and hiring procedures. This isn’t the fault of the screeners alone, but how are you supposed to make ads effective if you can only portray the real villains in pinstripes writing memos and tooling around the office. Of course, some of the screeners were to blame, as well, so they’re not off the hook. Kinda takes the zip out of the ad to only show the bureaucrats, don’t you think?

  7. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    So, thepresenceusmc, should a libby group make an ad showing all Marines as rapists and murderers because they disagree with Iraq poliices? That’s what has been done here.

    And Orbert Huntington: how quick would you be to get yourself fired by deliberately disobeying orders? The TSA uniformed service is run in a para-military fashion. Do you really want each individual screener making policy decisions?

  8. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    No, it hasn’t been done here, Bluto. That’s how you’ve taken it, but with all due respect that isn’t what is portrayed at all.

    I’m not from the TSA, nor am I from MAF. HOWEVER, as an informed taxpayer, it was a charicature of some serious shortcomings in the bureaucracy.

    In reference to your discussion of the hypothetical Marine Corps situation, it’s not that hypothetical at all. What do you think the left does every time they drag out Abu Ghraib or the Pendleton 8. It’s a regular PR-lynching of all the uniformed services, and it’s been going on for years, so you’ll pardon me if, by comparison, the MAF spot doesn’t seem so bad.

  9. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    No I won’t pardon you. If you get to whine about the Left’s unfair portrayal of Marines, then I get to whine about MAF’s slandering TSA screeners.

    Since you don’t seem to understand that you contradicted your own point within your own post, would it be fair for me to make a video portraying all Marines as imbeciles, just because of your mistake?

    Of course not.

    Now explain to me how showing a terrorist taking a rocket launcher off the x-ray table doesn’t demean every TSA screener wearing the uniform. Did you know that just about every screener could tell you the brand of your laptop just by looking at the x-ray? No, you didn’t, did you.

  10. Emperor Misha I Comment by Emperor Misha I UNITED STATES

    Look, I’m not saying (and I don’t think Bluto is either) that the MAF ad isn’t trying to make an important and very valid point, because they are.

    It’s not the message, it’s the method.

    How could they do it better while making sure that everybody knows where the buck stops, simultaneously making it hard-hitting?

    I don’t know, I’m not a copysmith or I’d be a lot richer than I am, but just off the top of my head:

    [CAPTION, superimposed over a picture of the Capitol]:

    “This is Washington DC”

    {insert a few notable quotes from DC blowhards about TSA regulations, the unacceptability of profiling etc.}

    [CAPTION, on black background]:

    “This is the result”

    {Fade to ad as it currently exists}

    Now let a REAL copysmith work on it, and it would work like a charm.

  11. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    One other thing. The most abjectly incompetent TSA “suit” I ever had the misfortune of running into was an ex-Marine light colonel.

    He stands out to me as being the opposite of how I view Marines. I would never consider this jackass to represent the Corps, and I don’t see why it’s so hard for you to extend the same courtesy. A lot of ex-Marines are wearing TSA uniforms right now.

  12. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Bluto, I guess we’re all entitled to our perspectives.

    Misha, you’re right that things could have been done better. Had they been, the ads might have been accepted, and we might all be enjoying a good laugh instead of breaking out the long knives.

    The ads weren’t well made nor were they as substantial as they might have been, but the bureaucracy needs exposure. If this had been an ad about DHS or INS fouling up, there would have been lots of laughs, but what about those poor stiffs patrolling the border?

    It stands to reason that one cannot shine the spotlight of truth on government bureaucracy without offending someone. What standard do we need to meet for it to be acceptable criticism?

  13. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    “It stands to reason that one cannot shine the spotlight of truth on government bureaucracy without offending someone. What standard do we need to meet for it to be acceptable criticism?”

    Shine the light on the bureaucrats, not the poor bastards left to deal as best they can with the bureaucrats mistakes.

  14. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Well, one can hope that, in the future, ads highlighting bureacratic errors will be restricted to bashing the wearers of pinstripes and pantsuits.

    That having been said, many of the problems with the TSA, especially right after 9/11, were problems at the bottom. There’s enough criticism to go around, but for criticism to work, it needs to have an effect.

    We identify symbols with ideas. That’s why symbols are important to propaganda and political ads. That’s why the MSM slams the military, to slam the war indirectly.

    If there are problems with a government agency (poor bastards, bureaucrats, or both) is there anything wrong with using a symbol/charicature. For instance, when I think “TSA,” I don’t think of some politburo-styled lard-ass sitting at a desk wasting time and money, I think of a passenger screener. Is it wrong to use that symbol?

  15. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    It’s wrong to use it to slander people, yes. TSA management squandered millions of dollars on buildings, office furniture, awards to fellow suits, “seminars” in exotic places, etc.

    Meanwhile, there are checkpoints being run with five screeners per shift, meaning that they are not allowed breaks or lunch. If a screener needs to piss, the supervisor has to shut the checkpoint down.

    There’s got be a better way to get MAF’s message across, and the reason this ad sucks out loud is probably because the agency handed it to a junior creative team. They’re not going to waste their best talent on smalltime ads for non-profits.

  16. LC RobertHuntingdon Comment by LC RobertHuntingdon

    Bluto, I agree with you that individuals should not make their own decisions nilly willy. But please check a little more closely because that was NOT what I said (or at least I don’t think so, and it certainly wasn’t what I INTENDED to say). I said if they ALL got together and AS A GROUP gave the blowhards the finger things would be changed pretty quickly.

    Or at least that was the intent of my point. Sorry if I either mispoke or just wasn’t clear enough.

    Neither did I say I would be QUICK to disobey orders. Obviously this would have to be a carefully thought out and organized grassroots movement. And other alternatives should be exhausted first. I think, however we are either past or getting very close to that point, so somebody NEEDS to get the ball rolling, and as I’m not a TSA screener that can’t be me.

    RH

  17. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Bluto, you know that and I know that, but do the people at whom the ad would have been targetted know it? Would it cause people to start doing research? If so, would bruised egos be a fair price to pay?

    From one angle, it seemed quite clever. You’re right…it wasn’t very sensitive and it looked like it was produced on a camcorder, but it seemed well-intentioned.

    The bigger issue should be reforming the TSA, and how unlikely that reform is to happen. Without publicity, it won’t be reformed.

  18. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    Ahh, Robert, you’ve touched on something here. The TSA screeners cannot really get together as a group. They’re barred by law from having a union represent them (not that I would want to see that anyway, I wouldn’t), and TSA management is so afraid of any hint of a union that they tend to rule with an iron hand. Any attempt at organization would be seen as trying to form a union, and dealt with accordingly.

    Screeners were successful at ending the policy of secondary screening for military traveling in uniform. They made enough complaints to the TSA ombudsman to get the policy changed, but this was an individual grassroots thing, as opposed to organized.

    thepresenceusmc: TSA managers love ads like this one because it allows them to deflect criticism to the rank-and-file and announce a new “training” program (and promotions and raises all around). MAF needs to expose the gross managerial incompetence that exists above the uniform TSA level.

  19. Emperor Misha I Comment by Emperor Misha I UNITED STATES

    From one angle, it seemed quite clever. You’re right…it wasn’t very sensitive and it looked like it was produced on a camcorder, but it seemed well-intentioned.

    And that’s a point worth holding on to.

    For all of its ham-fistedness, I think it’s pretty safe to assume that they WEREN’T intending to slam the screeners, it just came across that way.

  20. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    So, am I getting this straight?

    –We can’t run smart-ass ads because management won’t get the hint and we’ll offend people.
    –Electing “conservatives” obviously hasn’t fixed the problem.
    –Electing Dems sure as hellfire isn’t going to fix anything.
    –An internal grassroots effort to reform the department would be squished like a bug by the corrupt overlords.

    What the heck are we supposed to do, then? Let’s make this productive…with those options gone, what are we to do to fix the problem?

  21. juandos Comment by juandos UNITED STATES

    Correct me if I’m wrong but wasn’t the whole TSA agents doing the searches a deal worked out with Sen. Daschel and the other seditious turd bowl lickers by the Bush administration?

    I’ve been an airline employee since early ‘76 and the incompetence of the TSA is just breath taking…

    The TSA is a total waste of tax dollars (thanks to Veronique de Rugy is a Research Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute writting in NRO): For instance, last year the agency spent nearly half a million dollars on an awards ceremony, including $81,000 for plaques. It spent over $200,000 for travel and lodging for attendees and $461,745 were spent at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. where the event took place. And recently, the inspector general report revealed “waste and abuse” in the 2003 construction of the TSA Operation Center in Virginia: Employees bought $500,000 worth of artwork and silk plants and hid the purchases under the label “tool and equipment.” They also routinely used government credit cards to buy leather briefcases and other personal items.

  22. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    thepresenceusmc: I think you’re getting the picture. Ads like the MAF one allow the suits to tranfer blame for their own incompetence to the screeners.

    Take your cue from Juandos, though I must say, I’ve never met a competent, or straight, male airline employee before (just kidding).

    Attack the weasels who sucked their way into the Executive Service. Everything Juandos cited is absolutely correct.

  23. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Well, if your assessment is correct and what we know about government is true, we’re out of options. Guess we may as well throw in the towel? Or is there a solution?

  24. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    Yes. Get the type of information Juandos supplied out to the public and light a fire under some fat, stupid asses. MAF can abuse screeners all day long and accomplish nothing other than giving the TSA suits cover.

    Emperor Misha: I think that MAF’s agency just didn’t have enough background to know the difference between the uniformed screeners and the managers.

  25. Unregistered Comment by Lord Spatula I, King & Tyrant UNITED STATES

    Electing “conservatives” obviously hasn’t fixed the problem.

    When has there been a conservative majority in Congress?

    (Note I didn’t say “Republican”, but “conservative”.  Slight difference.)

  26. thepresenceusmc Comment by thepresenceusmc UNITED STATES

    Point taken, Lord Spatula, but that’s what we thought we had in ‘94. They told us the situation would be fixed after 9/11. I’m as sorry as the next guy that we fell for the lies, but we didn’t have much of an option.

  27. juandos Comment by juandos UNITED STATES

    Hey LC & IB Blutom I’m NOT a flight attendent… :lol_wp:

  28. juandos Comment by juandos UNITED STATES

    Hey , your comment: “thepresenceusmc” bring up an interesting question to me at least, just how many of those ‘94 conservatives are left in the House today?

    I remember many of them saying that were going to stay only a few terms and I remember a few of them doing just that though they could’ve been reelected…

  29. Unregistered Comment by Underdog

    I’m sorry but if we can’t take an obvious parody…

    I know it’s just anecdotal but, I have been victimized by TSA incompetance. They decided to pull me aside because my pants had zippers on the pockets and set off the metal detectors. They had me put my wallet in the x-ray machine andsent me to a roped off area to be searched. While waiting for them I watched as passengers were passing my wallet around trying to figure out who it belonged to and would not let me call out to have them bring it back to me. I finally got it back and I refuse to fly anywhere again thanks to them and the attitude I got even after they figured out it was my zippers that caused the problem.

  30. Unregistered Comment by 230Gr JHP UNITED STATES

    My wife is a flight attendant and I fly all over the country on a pretty regular basis and believe you me the incompetance runs from the top all the way to the bottom.I am sure that there were/are some competant individuals who wanted to do the right and honorable thing but when you are surrounded by a bunch of nitwits who are a pink slip away from Burger King you tend to get frustrated and move on. The TSA as a beaurocratic clusterfuck from the start and another example of Geogie boy betraying any connection he might have had w/ conservatism. Security officials from El Al will tell you that you will never stop terrorists by looking for bombs,guns etc.-only in profiling people-by looks,mannerisms and how they reply to simple questions…in other words in our PC world we are fucked!!!

  31. LC & IB Bluto Comment by LC & IB Bluto UNITED STATES

    230Gr JHP: forgive me, but the fact that your wife is a flight attendant pretty much guarantees that you have a biased viewpoint.

    Most of the airline employees have done whatever they could to snipe at TSA from the start, blaming the Federal screeners for losing their friends among the private screener force, and resenting the loss of control over security that the airlines experienced after 9/11. It was airlines that insisted that box cutters be allowed on planes, the better for their passengers to open peanut bags.

    When the Feds took over, the airlines were still given input to security procedures, but they were no longer the last word.

    Do Burger King employees take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution? How many Burger King employees do you know that go through a week-long, pass it or get fired re-qualification every six months? For that matter, how often are you youself formally tested, under threat of termination, on your competence at your essential job skills? Or do you work for McDonald’s?

    I’m trying to be polite here, because this is Misha’s house. Normally, I just give assholes ignorant enough to make a hamburger reference the back of my hand. Consider yourself lucky.