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October 24, 2012

Obama: The Pamphleteer

Obama Jobs Plan pamphlet

All hail the booklet!

After a very solid debate performance, I don’t know how you could offer up a weaker morning-after visual. Oversensitive to the charge he has no plan and clearly anxious over Romney’s megaphone, the Obama campaign, for a news cycle at least, does a convincing job of suggesting Romney is setting the terms. (I mean, didn’t the President just spend a evening saying it’s all there on the website?) And in bending over backward to demonstrate that they do (now) have a plan, another thing the imagery does is question how “forward” they’ve been in the first place.

After drilling Romney so hard on his competence, and having invested so much capital in the closely-scheduled last two debates showcasing Romney on both sides of every issue, brandishing this pamphlet feels like a defensive admission that the race, all this time about who to trust more, is now as much a referendum on the President.

(photo: Mandel Ngan caption: US President Barack Obama shows a copy of his jobs plan as speaks during a campaign rally October 23, 2012 at Triangle Park in Dayton, Ohio.)

  • pcalvinpcalvin

    In an era of easy to scrub websites, the president puts his plan out with ink on paper, not an Etch-a-Sketch.

    • black_dog_barking

      Yes! The power of Paper&Ink — permanence v. the temporality of Etch-a-Sketch and more importantly, bits on a computer network where a life span can be measured in microseconds.

  • acm

    I like pcalvin’s take, but I also remind you that probably many more people (or at least as many) will see this photo as watched the last debate (let alone picked up on that alleged snub). Look, the President holding “A Plan for Jobs” right in his hand!

  • bks

    Nothing but blue skies!


  • black_dog_barking

    Au contraire, Pierre Michael, I think the pamphlet is a brilliant move. After kicking debate ass, the pres is changing the subject, controlling the direction of the conversation. Great timing as ballot day looms.

    BHO has spent for years trying to change the subject from whatever the Republican right was screaming about at the moment. He’s had some success. Haven’t heard much from Mitch McConnell lately. Hopefully it will soon be Mitch who?

  • janis edwards

    I heard it would be distributed in 3 battleground states. Here’s the positive: 1. It’s a real thing, tangible. 2. The design is consostent with his logo sign. 3. Obama is photographed holding it, so make no mistake–it’s not a fakery job by the opposition. No need to read.

  • Regina Schrambling

    What I like about it is its calm, steady assumption that PBO supporters not only know how to read but how to comprehend. And that not all have access to the internet, let alone computer skills.

  • boomerangst

    I too see the president’s plan on paper and in his hand–he doesn’t need to hedge his positions or policies depending on his audience.

  • Gasho

    I like it.
    As others in the comments have suggested – it’s a plan. It’s on paper.

    The thing that makes it best of all is that it contrasts so completely with Romney’s INABILITY to produce such a plan. If Romney tried to print a plan, it’d have to be one of those books that has 2 covers, with two versions of the text that are upside down to each other and meet in the middle where the staple is.

  • Michael Shaw

    That’s the beauty of The Bag (and the subjectivity of imagery). I’m happy to serve as the catalyst for your views, and in this case, a consensus around the printed plan, and the photo-op, as something, let’s just say, eminently tangible.

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