Tuesday, August 02, 2016

"the Best Tradition of US politics...." Geo. Bush

In 1992, when we watched the Republican Convention, (which we did so we could get a feeling for who they were), but they spent a great deal of time talking about how the Democrats were not Americans. It was outrageous. I called a few friends, Paul Sullivan, Eric Sklar, Alicia Smith, and Brenda Marks in Dallas— just to see if they found it equally appalling, and no surprise, they did.

But what were we going to do?  We didn’t know exactly what to do but we figured our pal Ron Brown, (Aunt Peppy would say “Blessed Memory”) who was Chair of the Party would have some ideas. But he thought we already knew what we were going to do, so he asked how much ‘this thing” (he didn’t really want to know) was going to cost?  And I said, for no good reason, $165,000.  Sully said something about taking on the whole Republican party, and I agreed.

When we got to the street, Sullivan said, OK big shot, exactly what are we going to do. And we had a good laugh. The next day the candidate  — the first George Bush, said it was unlikely that he would participate in a debate.  And there it was…. Chickens.  Why Chickens?  First of all they are funny.  And I remembered that during some NY Senate campaign, the nutty advance people planned to release live chickens at the opposition’s big event. That never worked,  but I felt confident that we could send costumed chickens to Bush events with double sided signs, that said poultry supports Bush on one side but as soon as they got into the event they would turn it and it would say, “Bush is a chicken because he won’t debate.”

Our message directed independent campaign, continued to appear at Bush rallies, until one day the President talked to our poultry.  As you can imagine, it got press coverage and we never had to send our chickens out again. (“The President Talked to a Chicken”)  Other people got it and sent their own chickens.  We roasted a chicken, and transitioned to Pinocchio’s, then the “Harry Truman Truth Squad,” and finally “Witch George Bush.”  Those were our costumed characters but there was no end to the Anti-Bush messages we developed. And just so you know, George Bush is a very classy guy.  We never interrupted him or were we ever disrespectful. In fact, he passed a note to one of the chickens that said, “To the Clinton-Gore folks   
You guys did it right  For your team- but polite
and in the best tradition of U.S.  politics.   Don’t
work too hard against me!  Thanks.... George Bush”  

That’s the one posted on my Facebook page.

Anyway, Our day began with a conference-comedian-meeting-call in the AM and putting together comedy writers from all over the country.  The majority of people who worked with us would have been considered dinosaurs, but we were experienced political message people — which is why we were so successful.  There’s lot’s more but you’ll have to pay for the rest.  So what should we do this political year … we have some ideas.  We’re just sayin’… Iris

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