…Lead Astray, Run Amok.

I was going to sit this one out and not put up a post on it, but I think it is important enough to the few readers who might see this (hey, we’re growing! stop chuckling). There has been a huge internal blogosphere brew ha ha over ad placements of the Sherrod Brown Senate campaign. The first ad (which featured only Brown in a brown toned button matching his site) drew some flak for trying to buy ad placements as a way to co-opt the phenomenal netroots support Hackett has drawn – a valid point. Some even made fun of Hackett taking 3 hours to blog with users of DailyKos, which I find just slightly more genuine than a big blogads buy.

The second ad is when the shit really hit the fan. The ad turned from brown to blue – Crystal Gayle anyone? – and it featured BOTH Hackett AND Brown. The ad led viewers to the general election fund for the winner of the presumed Dem. primary. Shit hitting fan after the fold…

the controversial ad

Democracy guy, as usual, smells the bullshit a mile away. He points out possible payola issues and conflicts of interest. Pounder of Buckeye Senate Blog points out the potential conflict of interest and interesting change of tune by both Jerome Armstrong (MyDD) and Kos (DailyKos). Not good. Not to mention that at first, the ad was still pointing to Brown’s page. That coulda been an honest mistake, so no biggy there.

Next (and as of right now), the ad added back in text under the image that was used for the old Brown only ad:

If you want to know more about where Sherrod Brown stands on Iraq, Trade, Health Care and other issues. Visit the Sherrod Brown issue pages on the campaign website.

All of which links to Sherrod’s site’s issue area.

ad as it appeared on 10/24/05

Some defended their friends by completely losing their minds – don’t read this post it will make your head hurt…I will summarize:

Pounder points out the problems with the ad and change of tune of prominent bloggers and asks very simple questions. Armando loses his freaking mind and lets loose with a barrage of obsenities. Rinse. Repeat. I even hear that some posts have been scrubbed of some comments – which given the obsenity is understood, but sends the wrong signal in a thread about integrity. I’d rather see the whole thing live on in it’s ugliness.

There are several problems here:

1 – Though deemed a “classy move” for Sherrod’s campaign to change their ad to raise money for the GE, it smacks of a political coup. Brown has money already and would surely like to keep and even increase the lead in funds for a primary. Hackett has catching up to do, and the netroots are where a good deal probably would come from. Pulling money away from Hackett and into the GE war chest benefits who? Right…

2 – The use of Hackett’s photo. I have a problem with the way the photos are used (this could be viewed as overanalysis, but others thought of it too so I don’t feel quite as nutty). Hackett appears to be looking at Brown approvingly and Brown is facing the viewers and in a dominant position. Advantage Brown.

3 – Lack of transparency. Who placed this ad? Can you tell? ActBlue? Hackett AND Brown? Hackett? Brown? Instead of the original ads – which were trying to pull online support from Hackett TO Brown (and this is all good), these new ads prevent the choice that is forced between sending Brown money and finding a way to send Hackett money. It’s sly, and it shouldn’t work.

4 – Obviously it is disturbing for there to be indications that prominent bloggers changed their tune after a big ad buy by a candidate competing against their previous darling candidate.

Brown and Co. are playing games…still. As I’ve said before, if you are distraught by the division that you read about on the web or elsewhere you know exactly where to look for the blame.

Hoodwinked. Bamboozled, Led Astray, Run Amok…

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