Infomercials We’d Like to See

Our Obamaseltzer Open Thread begins, as is customary, with an invocation from the Most Rev. Howard Beale:

I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It’s a depression. Everybody’s out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel’s worth; banks are going bust; shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter; punks are running wild in the street, and there’s nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there’s no end to it.

We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat. And we sit watching our TVs while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that’s the way it’s supposed to be!

We all know things are bad — worse than bad — they’re crazy.

It’s like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out any more. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we’re living in is getting smaller, and all we say is, “Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials, and I won’t say anything. Just leave us alone.”

Well, I’m not going to leave you alone.

I want you to get mad!

I don’t want you to protest. I don’t want you to riot. I don’t want you to write to your Congressman, because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street.

All I know is that first, you’ve got to get mad.

You’ve gotta say, “I’m a human being, goddammit! My life has value!”

So, I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window, open it, and stick your head out and yell —

I’m going to Disneyland!


Don’t forget that poor Howard Beale was exploited by his network simply to increase the ratings. His mind was gone and the corporate suits kept him on the air to keep the sheeple entertained/sedated. Getting mad doesn’t change anything. Yelling out the window doesn’t change anything. Posting on blogs doesn’t change anything.

We’re this close to an election that could give the Democrats control of the executive and legislative branches of the government. Will Sen. Reid and Speaker Pelosi have a sudden change of heart and begin severing the bonds that tie legislators to their corporate sponsors? My heart says yes – my head says don’t hold your breath.

President Obama has his work cut out with his own party.

Wow. Geezer making robocalls into Arizona, Tailbunny saying she prepared to get started on Palin 2012. And now….

Hello. My name is Barack Obama. You are my countrymen. Prepare to vote.

Honest to FSM, the anticipation of this ad might kill me. I am SO SCARED it’s going to backfire. I literally might not make it through the next week.

Ad looks great so far. Mrs RML is crying.

“I believe we need to usher in a new era of responsibility.”

That must be the most anti-American line I’ve heard all fall.

The best thing about the Eagle is that he speaks to everyone – the Wal-Mart worker, the elderly woman with arthritis, as well as the educated and well to do. It’s a trick Howard Dean could not pull off.

@Dave H: I’ll settle for competence in the Executive Branch.

Stylistically — the music is a little sleepy, but the cinematography is just gorgeous. Just like this campaign — cool, calm, collected.

And, just now, the first mention of a gallon of milk in this campaign. Used to be a mainstay, really.

Who could hate a man who cares so much for people?

Top-half of Oprah’s head. I see what you did there, Barry.


It’s really the one benefit somebody who is “other” gets for being “other”…the ability to speak to and empathize with that little part in every mainstream person that feels marginalized and oppressed.

Barry has an old-fashioned breadth and depth of programs on offer. (Never mind that Congress mangles anything that comes its way.) I’ve thought for months that Geezer ceded the election when he didn’t come up with anything comparable.

After that, even the Phillie Phanatic is in the tank.

[british accent]

Game, set, match: Obama. 7-5, 6-7, 6-4, 6-3.

Why does Tweety always have spittle on his lower lip? And he might run against Specter.

I missed the infomercial. Damn job. Do you think he swayed anyone?

Matthews to whites who won’t vote for a black man: “What more do you want?”

Geezer, just before first(ish) pitch, comes with his scary ad-du-jour. Difference is stark, really.

And the stadium is booing. I love this town.

JNOV: For people who were in the tank like me… well, I don’t matter at this point. For undecideds? I would come away with a few questions, but would generally be impressed. Won more votes than it lost. Therefore: WIN.

@JNOV: I don’t think he was out to sway — all that Sam Shepard/Jessica Lange music was meant to calm.

@JNOV: @redmanlaw: Is Tweety drunk or does he think he’s in an episode of “Mad Men”? Are you white guys really all about being the good provider for the wife & kiddies? Is the government trying to emasculate you by taking over that job? WTF?

@nojo: I love Sam Shepard. Yes, calm is good.

chicago bureau: Seriously — that ad of McCain’s, coming after a wonderful set-piece by Barry, makes him look kinda cheap and needy.

If anything, moving the game back seven minutes did help America, in that the bloviating of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver was curtailed. This is truly putting Country First.

@Mistress Cynica: Yeah, I turned the channel to the game when he started on the desires of the working class man. He’s insane, but I love him.

@chicago bureau: Just saw the ad. Americans love gloom.

Let’s live blog the World Series! I know. I know. I’m the only one here who cares. Yay, Jenkins!

Don’t listen to me? Listen to [drumroll] THE CORNER!

If any undecided voters are moved by this nearly unwatchable garbage, then we will get what we deserve. But I guess if people buy the super absorbent car sponge, with bonus wax applicator, for $19.95, they may buy this horrid stuff.

They cut to Obama live at a rally, just so he could hold chin-aloft and deliver the usual platitudinous boiler-plate about “change” for a few minutes? Seems like a waste.

The Treacly Music … in the Obama special is just atrocious. I half expect to look over and see Karo syrup dripping down the screen.

I seez yr bitterz. I vetoz it. Kthxbaibai.

JNOV: That’s a run. A blooper wins this game? So far, so good for the Phils.

Rays error on pop fly – Phillz lead!

And, may I say, fuck you Bud Seigel.

This town could use some good news.

@JNOV: Wake me up when the camera pans to Cole Hamels.

Wait: Howard pimping a Subway philly steak? Blasphemy.

redmanlaw: Bud Selig. Fixed. (Except for Bud being a dimwit. That’s unfixable.)

OMG FUCKING TIME CHANGE. I JUST MISSED THE WHOLE THING. I’m such a fucking moron. Shit. SHIT! Now I’ve got to go find it, and RomeBoy just came in drunk from a Halloween party, and he’s dressed like a pregnant Britney Spears, and my life just gets more weird.

@mellbell: I know!

@chicago bureau: It made me cry. Any food joint that feels like you have to add “Philly” to “cheesesteak” does not make cheesesteaks.

@chicago bureau: Did you notice the subliminal “RFK” during the segment about the school teacher? Niiiiice.


@nojo: I thought that Geezer ad, venal, perfectly timed and placed at fade out from KeithO, was the single most intelligent thing his campaign has done so far.

Yay! I like Werth’s scruffiness. Reminds me of a surfer I know back in his pot-smoking days.

@chicago bureau: Sorry, I knew that. Out of it with the cold that won’t go away, sore throat, ennui.

@RomeGirl: huffpo. Looks like you go some drankin to do to catch up.

@ moochers – I believe Taco Bell gives away free tacos for every stolen base.

Promnight should be worried about the rioting when we win. Yeah, I said it. We’re going to win. Tonight. And shit is going to go up in flames, cuz that’s how we roll.

@redmanlaw: It’s on the official site too, but taking FOREVER to load up. MORE WINE PLEASE.

@JNOV: I totally thought “Sam Seabourne” when reading “Sam Shepard.” Clearly, I need to stop watching West Wing DVDs.

Christ. This game will probably run over into Black Eagle on Stewart tonight. Dammit.

@RomeGirl: Ha ha! I love Tombstone and lunger Val Kilmer before he went all batshit and got puffy.

I believe Taco Bell gives away free tacos for every stolen base.

Still too high a price to eat that stuff. Ever since my forays into SoCal, a bad Taco and that Youtube of a NYC Taco Bell, I can’t stomach Taco Bell anymore.

@JNOV: Did you see that quote I Tumbled, about how this girl in Philly joked about already having her looting spot picked out? LOVE PHILLY.

I only want the fka Devil Rays to get beat because Black Sabbath is my higher power.

@RomeGirl: Not yet. I’m not able to log on to much from work. I hate my job.

@ManchuCandidate: Heh. Too high indeed.

@JNOV: If you like near albinos and are still curious about physics and shit, there’s that guy in the ad for Sharp flat screen TVs.

The back and forth with Rachel starts now.

@RomeGirl: I predict the street lights and the subway will be the first to go. Then an overturned car or two. Maybe a bus. There is something weird about PA sports fans. Penn State kids used to climb the goal posts and knock them down after a win. I don’t know if they still do, but there was talk about putting axel grease on the posts so no one could climb them.

@redmanlaw: DUDE! I was thinking the same thing, but his hairdo weirds me out. And he’s a shill. Pfft.

@chicago bureau: Headline I’d like to see: Devil Rays Play Like Hell

@Mistress Cynica:

Thanks. I’ve been part of an “other” for a while so I know whereof I speak.

I’ve watched all of two innings of Phils baseball this year (okay, in my life), and each time that Utley dude has made a phenomenal play. Cap’s off, sir.

@nabisco: I’m kicking you out of my state. I mean, my commonwealth.

@JNOV: Better the game than this doof on Rachel. Mike Easley is usually better that.

@JNOV: My township supervisors can beat up your township supervisors!

(srsly, Utley has a rocking good glove. Don’t tell anyone I said so.)

I LOVE this Gatorade commercial!

Oh-ficial response from Geezerplex:

“As anyone who has bought anything from an infomercial knows, the sales-job is always better than the product. Buyer beware.”

Translation: WAAAAAAAAA!

@JNOV: Even though I grew up on Philly sports, (dubblya-eye-pay) any “foreigner” can learn all he needs to know by watching the evolution and drama of the Wing Bowl.

@redmanlaw: Back O/T with the infomersh; I caught the first part on the radio, coming back from a Halloweenie parade with the kids. The rest on the tubes. I think it was great for those of us already swimming in the tank, so-so for any fence sitters.

I made the mistake of catching five minutes of local squawk radio coming home from work today. The central PA crazees are making it sound like Obama has been running the country for the last eight years, and Geezer is the “reformer”. And the talking-with-the-Palestinian thing has legs, I tell you.

In summary, this thing ain’t over and the mersh may have been a bad idea. But maybe I’m in reverse-denial, let’s hope.

@RomeGirl: Ha ha! The Wing Bowl! YES! It’s better than that Nathan’s hot dog thing.

@chicago bureau: Half of his fucking base has their households FILLED with shit they bought from infomercials. You can’t idolize the common man and then bash their only means of shopping.

nabisco: And the talking-with-the-Palestinian thing has legs, I tell you.

Furry ones, I wager. God help us if we should ever talk to Palestinians.

Phils 4 : 3 Angel Rays.

@JNOV: My dad has gone for the last three years, and calls me from the stadium. I love the Wing Bowl in all of its gluttonous finery.

Jesus! 24 is still on? Thank FSM Alias ended when it did.

Awwww, the Rays look all cold and shiz.

@JNOV: I thought there was a 24 mini movie, and then the series starts in January. Don’t you blaspheme about my 24!

@RomeGirl: Sorry! I watched the first two seasons and got kind of bored after that. Here’s an admission: I used to watch Black Angel religiously. I thought Jessica Alba was fantastic.

Watching the infomercial now. CAN WE PLEASE TALK ABOUT HOW AWESOME BARACK OBAMA IS? Hot damn.

This WS game is so fucked up. Not the teams fault. Just the fact that this is a suspended game. The dumbfuckery of MLB and Bud should not astound me, but it does.

Totally invented curse. The Curse of the Bambino? Was real. The Billy Goat Curse? Is real. William Penn’s curse? Totally made up. There. I said it.

@chicago bureau: Horrors! No, no, no, it’s real. We’ve built buildings taller than the brim of his hat, and we’ve been screwed ever since.

Well, curses or no, it’s top 9. Going to log off for the night and enjoy me some Keef and Jon Stewart. LATERS. (And a preemptive YAY for JNOV.)

I’d better go smoke before the mayhem begins.

@chicago bureau: Goodnight!

Nojo, it just hit me, when I read DaveH’s commnet, @Dave H: has it not occurred to anyone that Bill O IS the conservative Howard Beale, an insane out of control maniac that his network is using for ratings? FoxNews IS Network, except when it finally happened, it was a nazi version.

@chicago bureau: Hey, McCarver’s claim to fame is that one of the best pitchers who ever lived refused to pitch to anyone but him, true fact, you know who I am talking about, he demanded McCarver stay on the team as long as he did.

Oh, I typed it, but I erased it, I would get in too much trouble, the connection between the Prom household and Tim McCarver is still too scandalous, and don’t know how many members of my family have found Stinque and might see it, if I say too much. I am bursting, but holding myself back.

The fans should run on the field.

Oh man. People are jumping in their cars and driving to a nearby street that has been shut down. They’re honking their horns, and someone is shooting flares in the sky. And we’re still booing the Rays.

@JNOV: I’m fairly certain they are physically restricting fans from bum rushing the field.

PHILLY. God bless you guys. You freakin’ deserve it. Now, everyone go vote for Obama.

@RomeGirl: Yeah, it’s too bad. My neighborhood is going nuts right now. I can’t imagine what’s going to happen in the city.

@RomeGirl: I missed it, too. I’m a little crest fallen he didn’t take my suggestion about bringing out Elizabeth Kucinich and Michelle to make out on camera for the last 25 minutes of his speech. Selfish dweeb.

@FlyingChainSaw: Well, he could still start out his inauguration speech with “Where the white women at?” I still have hope.

I still hope his first executive order establishes his right to deflower all virginal Tri-Delt and DG pledges before they are initiated.

Don’t worry, he won’t be busy.

@Promnight: I don’t want those goddesses anywhere near him during the inauguration, though I do hope his handlers lease the enclosure of the Popemobile for his address.

P-Obama-X infomecial airing right now in SEA. He’ll cut your taxes, tax your credits, lose 8 inches off your waist, only 60 days till a better you, etc etc etc. I find the emphasis on tax cuts and credits to be amusing given that we’re staring down the barrel of a $1 trillion dollar deficit.

Oh fuck me, I’ll just be relieved to have a president who doesn’t confuse the subject and the predicate.

minutes later

Ok, this is pretty damn inspiring /snark off/

Congrats JNOV on the win.
I’m watching this Unicorn special tape-delayed on West Coast time. I started crying with the woman with the rheumatoid arthritis whose husband had to go work at Wal-Mart after retiring, and I haven’t stopped crying. I was babbling when he was talking about his mother dying of cancer and battling health insurance companies. Hits a little too close to home, but for whom doesn’t it hit closely?

I’ll give y’all my legal observer update from today after the Infomercial of Hope and teh Change ends.

@Original Andrew: I’m watching it now on YouTube. (Was busy working hard on completing a research paper.) Dammit, it’s hard to keep from getting worked up when you see a retired man having to go back to work at fucking Wal Mart to make ends meet, after working his whole damn life. Or the pension of that other guy that was cut from 1500 to 370-something.

Goddammit, I want my country back.

Mr. OA: “And he’s got a nice ass, too. That’s never been said about a president.”


I know! I just found myself wondering what it will be like to think about the US America government without that now familiar wave of nausea, followed by revulsion, cynicism and bitchiness.

OMFG, I think I’ve caught Teh Hope!

@Promnight: Actually as I was typing my comment about Howard Beale I thought about comedian/wannabe sportscaster Rush Limbaugh and his striking similarities to the fictional character. I try to avoid ever thinking about Bill O. Rush is some kind of a larger than life, operatic character. Bill reminds me too much of something you’d want to scrape off the sole of your shoe.

Gov. Palin was appearing just a few miles up the road tonight. I’ll be curious to see how many showed up for a dose of “Hey, look at me, I’m a star!”. I saw Rachel was covering the 35,000 in Florida out at 11 pm to see the Obama/Clinton show. I hope there isn’t yet another white minivan in a police chase or the “news” channels will forget all about the election.

@Dave H: I’m having a problem working up the Roger Ailes/Faye Dunaway connection.

@SanFranLefty, homofractal: Yep, they’ll need a replacement for golfer/country crooner John Daly, whose only current singing engagement is in a North Carolina drunk tank.

109-year-old daughter of a slave casts her ballot for Teh Hope in central Texas.

No snark for a few minutes. Totally speechless here.

Just caught the Jon Stewart interview with the Unicorn. Damn that grey hair looks sexy…

Between thee and me? The unicorn is too thin, and voice too high. James Earl Jones for President!!

my daughter is a tri-delta! (and there ain’t a virgin in that house!)

be careful honey! no one knows better than me the insanity of the philly sports fan….dangerous crazy people.

and you referred to willy tell’s hat. most people won’t get that. i’ll explain. the city charter called for no building in philadelphia to ever be taller that his statue on top of independence hall. when philly started building skyscrapers late in the game, the crazy people of philly decided it was a curse on all the sports teams. so then they started dressing willy up with the uniform of any team that made it to the playoff’s. then they said that was a curse.
JNOV, is willy dressed in a phillie uniform???

@SanFranLefty: How great is that.

Terrific commercial. And I despise commercials. As ever, he gets a top-flight team to work for him and lets them do what they do best. Were I directing I’d have eased off on the hand movements at the edge of the frame: distracting and artificial. But he read the copy very well. I loved how they managed to suggest Lincoln without using the word. As ever, Himself was stylish and poised. I mean it, he is Cary Grant with a functioning brain (Coward called him one of the three most stupid people he knew. Another being the prince of Wales and the third being…?). It was designed to soothe fears and to reassure and if you needed to be soothed or reassured it might very well have done the trick.

Can it please be the 5th soon? Can we please move on? Please?

109 year old woman…too much. i’m sobbing again.

@baked: Nope, no Phillies uniform this year, thank FSM. Poor Willy. He has suffered many abuses.

Dear FSM: Please protect Unicorn and Plugz from the crazies and keep Caligutard from declaring martial law. C’mon, we’ve only got, like 4 days to go. Ra-men.

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