Archive for Friday, June 29, 2012

Branding blunder

June 29, 2012


To the editor: 

“Yankee Doodle,” was sung by the Redcoats in the late 1700s to deride New England colonists who sought independence from England, but the “Yanks” embraced the song, and the term “Yankee” became positive rather than negative for Americans. Decades later, when the U.S. entered World War I to help the Allies, our troops went overseas singing: “The Yanks are coming, the Yanks are coming.”

In our day, opponents of the Affordable Health Care Act seized on the term “Obamacare” to denounce and deride the program. On Thursday, the Republican candidate for president declared that if elected he would repeal “Obamacare.”

Opponents could have called the health reform law “Tax-Us Care” or “Cheat-Us Care” or some other derisive term. But, in their anger and frustrations, opponents chose to connect health care reform personally and inextricably to the president. 

In my opinion that was serious marketing and branding blunder.

Years from now, the term “Obamacare,” like the term “Yankee” may have a very positive connotation for most people. It may become a term of approbation for much-needed 21st century health care reform. 

Barack Obama’s opponents, in derision, stuck his name to health care reform. They wanted it to be an epithet. Years from now people may well be warning politicians “keep your hands off my Obamacare.”


cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

What a load of BS. After Obamacare was passed, many liberals also called it "Obamacare" in order to reflect what they thought was an accomplishment. The snide criticism of anyone using that term didn't begin in earnest until liberals began to realize that it might be held unconstitutional. At that point, anyone who said "Obamacare" began to be derided by most of the electronic media and all liberals in Washington. Now that one Supreme Court Justice has chosen to rewrite a statute from the bench and Obamacare has survived a very meritorious constitutional challenge, hypocritical liberals will again be delighted to call it "Obamacare."

Kate Rogge 5 years, 3 months ago

Revisionist history, Mr. Elder. The letter writer is correct about who insisted upon dismissing it as Obamacare as though the President's name alone was sufficient to invite derision. And I expect he is going to be correct about its future positive association with the President. Millions upon millions wasted to demonize and destroy the Affordable Care Act. And to what end?

cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

To get rid of it, that's what. The battle's not over, pal.

Bradley Kemp 5 years, 3 months ago

No one rewrote a law. The court's decision didn't change one word of the Affordable Care Act. The court simply found the act constitutional.

cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

Only by rewriting the law. You must not be familiar with that concept.

Bradley Kemp 5 years, 3 months ago

You seem to be at least slightly too familiar with it.

cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

Having seen it done by liberal Supreme Court Justices for many years, yes.

Brock Masters 5 years, 3 months ago

Plus, why would anyone think a tax bill rammed down our throats is a good thing?

Leslie Swearingen 5 years, 3 months ago

I am really looking forward to President Obama's next term. If only the Republicans would think about the country and not about their own petty concerns, congress could pass some programs that would greatly benefit everyone.
And, yes, I want Nancy Pelosi back as speaker of the house, and what the woman looks like has nothing to do with how she does her job.
It is time for Americans to serious up, and not be so concentrated on the fluff.

Brock Masters 5 years, 3 months ago

Obama continues to blame Bush for his inability to turn the economy around. The blame is based on the shape of the economy when he became president. The economy will be worse for the next president so if Obama couldn't turn it around in his first term how will he do it in a second?

Are we better off in any way today then 3 1/2 years ago? I don't think so.

rtwngr 5 years, 3 months ago

In your dreams, sweetheart. Nancy Pelosi is a partisan hack that has only her best interests at heart.

paulveer 5 years, 3 months ago

Well said, Larry, and I think a lot more of us will start to embrace the term. It appears that the Republicans are attempting to make this election a referendum on the act. It is not a totally stupid strategy, because they have nothing of substance, but on this issue alone I expect the President's lead in relevant polls to increase.

cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

And many more will refer to it now as ObamaTax, per Chief Justice Roberts' ruling.

yourworstnightmare 5 years, 3 months ago

I am starting to sense that Obama has lost your vote.

cato_the_elder 5 years, 3 months ago

Duh. Look up "incompetent." The definition describes Obama precisely.

yourworstnightmare 5 years, 3 months ago

Obamacare has a nice ring to it.

Better than Romneycare, but the exact same thing.

Kirk Larson 5 years, 3 months ago

They were thinking that it would work like "Hillarycare" did. Shows that they are devoid of original ideas.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 5 years, 3 months ago

"Obamacare" is a racist, bigoted epthiet coined by the extreme right republicans to further bash and trash the black Kenyan dude in the White House. It is intended to heap derision and hatred on the lawfully elected President of the United States by those klansmen, nazis, and crackers who cannot stomach the gains made by black people in our society. I have heard people at my workplace refer to the Martin Luther King holiday as "Ni%%er Day and the date of Mr. Obama's election as an extension of that holiday. This is nothing but pure racial hatred that we seem to think has been overcome in our society. But the facts are that there are still those who think the President should be dragged down a gravel road with a log chain and hung in a tree.

beatrice 5 years, 3 months ago

Hopefully you called your co-workers out for being racists and then reported their creation of a hostile work place to HR.

Also, I have to call a Godwin flag on your comment. Unless they have actually killed 6 million Jews, people who don't like Obama or "Obamacare" aren't nazis. Only actual nazis should ever be called nazis, otherwise, it diminishes the horror of what nazis actually did.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 5 years, 3 months ago

Beastrice, it would have done no good to have called out my "co-workers" for their prejudice and bigotry, the "president" of the company (son of the former "president") is just as disguting as many of his employees, making statements like "this company was founded by three queers back in Illinois". I will not get into any other deficiencies except that the economy has done pretty much to hm what has happened in many other businesses.

Regarding your "Godwin" comment, first I do not know who this "Godwin" is, and am sort of familiar with some one by that name that has made a statement that anyone who tries to compare anything today to Hitler and the Third Reich is full of crap. I do not recognize any of that. The Americn Nazi Party is alive, evolving, and promoting the ideals of racism and hatred of their founder, George Lincoln Rockwell and his mentor Adolf Hitler. They have not yet achieved the success of the Third Reich, but the purpose and direction is there and they are trying to move their insane notions forward. I feel that some of the republican devotees are similarly motivated.

But I do not back away from my contention that the republican party has nothing to contribute to the political discussion except the never-ending diatribe of Mr. Romney that he will "repeal Obamacare" (he cannot do this) and that their only objective is to defeat the courrent President of the United States. I have heard no other suggestions as to how these tea baggers will do anything better or different. Therefore, I support the President and his health care plan. Nothing better or more efficient has appeared on the republican screen.

Flap Doodle 5 years, 3 months ago

You need to get a popsicle and relax. You might burst something if you keep this level of mindless rage going too long.

beatrice 5 years, 3 months ago

Shouldn't it really be called "Romneycare," since it was his plan originally?The Supreme Court upheld Romneycare. Romney was certainly in favor of the individual mandate to pay for healthcare insurance before he was against it.

If elected, Romney will not be able to overturn the Affordable Care Act. He has already said he agrees with most things in the act -- things like not having lifetime limits on coverage, not being denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions, parents being allowed to keep children on their insurance up to age 26, etc... -- the only thing he doesn't like is that people have to actually pay for it. Thus far, the new Romneycare is much like the old Romneycare, but allowing everyone to freeload off the system.

So I wonder, which would add more to the deficit, a program that individuals are held accountable for paying their own way as Obama has overseen, or the one that doesn't require any payment at all, as Romney appears to favor?

I suspect people will turn to appreciate "Obamacare." I agree with the letter writer.

Flap Doodle 5 years, 3 months ago

I think that the O-word will be the prefix for many terms of deprecation in the years to come.

Flap Doodle 5 years, 3 months ago

Just a reminder, Yankee isn't exactly a compliment everywhere in the US.

beatrice 5 years, 3 months ago

Especially in places where your O-word -- and another word that is just one letter away from O -- is used with regularity.

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