Saturday, April 16, 2011

Liberal Implosion underway?

Did anyone outside the bubble believe the Liberals were going to fix their brand in thirty six days with heavy adverstisement and fluffing from the friendly media? Canadians are much smarter than some media give credit. The media spinners might believe they can still shape public opinion with flogging silly issues. From climategate to wafer gate our media has not realized how far they have fallen into disrepute for not protecting the perception of their own bias and credibility. The Social media explosion has changed the landscape at home and over seas.
Short of a game-changer between now and May 2, Michael Ignatieff’s Liberals will take a beating in Quebec next month. -Chantal Hébert
The Ignatieff campaign reminds me of the Martin campaign in 2006. The invisible platform with incoherent messaging and the inability to stay on track.  Will the media provide analysis on why the Liberals failed to close the gap in the last few weeks?

“People love to talk about strategies. But frankly, at the end of the day, logistics are at least as important, if not more important. There’s an old saying that amateurs talk about strategy and professionals talk about logistics… After the fact people go back and point to their own genius, or something that put it over the top, but as a matter of fact it’s a whole lotta luck.” (Party campaign manager) -Alex Marland, POLITICALMARKETING IN MODERN CANADIAN FEDERAL ELECTIONS

More striking than this continuity in personnel was the continuity, a.k.a. immobility, in the Board’s thinking and attitudes. Its practice had been consistently to hype expectations about the leader’s performance, “Making History” being the prototypically inflated title they had given Martin’s all things-to-all-people acceptance speech at his leadership convention victory two years before. Having ousted Chrétien and ostracized rivals by the time Martin took power in Ottawa, the Board had proceeded to deepen divisions and alienate other Liberals rather than heal wounds and bring together the party’s different camps. –Stephen Clarkson, How the Big Red Machine Became the Little RedMachine

Key Liberals absent in 2011, are some just attending staged publicity events as they did in Dion Green Shift campaign in 2008?

Does it makes sense to bring out CBC labelled Liberal “heavy hitters”, “all-stars” like Jean Chretien and Paul Martin in the last half of the campaign? Some of us think this illustrates the tone-deafness of the media and Liberal party who still view these two men as assets vs. liabilities. Chretien never faced the united right centre party that exist today. The NDP traditional campaign messaging was not resonating with their base. Martin did repeat the Chretien strategy on the pulling the plug in May giving the Conservatives very little time to adjust after their conference selecting Stephen Harper as their leader in December.

The Conservative Party political organization’s strength was evident last week. They were able to provide a casual link from research within 48 hours of an internet Face book picture with of a guest that might pose a risk of a staged publicity event during the campaign. The media and opposition parties tried to run with it and create another issue. It failed. The Conservative party messaging has been consistent with 2008.   The other  parties have not been able to match the speed and sophistication at which the Conservatives have developed their intelligence gathering capabilities.
How will this affect the ground game the advance polls and Election Day?

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