Monday, October 25, 2010

Meg Whitman: "An Unhappy Choice"

As long as we’re looking at California gubernatorial ads, here’s Meg Whitman’s latest which implicitly answers the Brown ad we considered here.

Here’s the pitch: Being a billionaire, I’m not going pretend to speak with the populist authenticity of a Sarah Palin. But don’t confuse me with Arnold Schwarzenegger either. He’s a Hollywood action-hero who has been playing a political outsider as if California were a studio sound stage. Jerry Brown is as much a political illusionist as Arnold, just the man to preside over the long-running theatrical production in Sacramento conjuring up fantastic images of good government. You can trust me to change things because I made my billions making real things happen in the real world where voters reside.

You’d think that, given California’s sad state, and the extent to which Jerry Brown is implicated in the long-running failures of its government, that Whitman's message would have more resonance than recent polls suggest it's having, especially given all the dollars she's putting behind it. Maybe it’s not because people on Main Street think that billionaire businesswomen are illusionists too.


Anonymous said...

A billionaire's business success is so off-the-charts that's it's hard for the rest of us to see them as just being better at something that everybody's trying to do. They look either incredibly lucky or presumptively corrupt. I think Whitman's the victim of that perception.

Anonymous said...

Being a billionaire has worked well for Michael Bloomberg in NYC. He doesn't seem lucky or corrupt to me -- he seems like a really good businessman and entrepreneur.

Lone Wolff said...

That's true about Bloomberg. But he didn't first get elected as the guy who'd clean up the mess in NYC--he campaigned as the guy who would carry on Rudy Giuliani's good work. And he was relected by the skin of his teeth last year. The most prominent Republicans who've gotten elected to clean up a mess left by liberal Democrats and have had some success doing it--think of Chris Christie and Mitch Daniels--aren't businessmen. I think Anon.3:25 is on to something.