Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Maverick is His Name: Gambling is His Game

Sing along now (from that old James Garner show):

"Natchez to New Orleans,
living on jacks and queens,
Maverick is the legend of the West.''

And, remember, Maverick was his name, gambling was his game,
and: "Luck is the lady that he loves the best.''

Have we become a nation of gamblers?
Sometimes, I wonder if the sheer gravity and complexity of the issues and problems we deal with haven't become too much for people to contemplate.
Maybe, worrying about all that stuff isn't what we want to do anymore?
Does just letting things happen, or voting with reckless abandon, make any difference?
If one believes in predestination, or that Divine Providence will always rescue us, then maybe paying attention really doesn't matter that much.
But, after all these years of practicing free will and trying to discern right from wrong, I have to strongly discredit that recklessness as a way to achieve anything but chaos, suffering and a return to barbarism!
That's why John McCain's judgement is looking pretty cynical to me right now.
He seems to have forgotten that knowledge, hard work and continuing the noble path to freedom envisioned by our founding fathers require more than laziness and wishful thinking!
Instead of a book entitled 'The Audacity of Hope', he seems to favor one titled 'The Hope of Audacity'.
One could call that 'maverick' thinking, but I call it stupidity of the worst kind!
I doubt it is something he learned at the Naval Academy, or from his father, the Admiral, or his Grandfather, the Admiral either.
One doesn't earn the rank of Admiral by acting stupidly!
Is it that he wants to equal or surpass his father so badly that he will do anything to achieve that?
After all, that's kinda like what our current sorry excuse for a President did, and in so doing probably prevented his much more competent brother Jeb from having a chance at that job.
I wonder if McCain had a brother named McAble?

Largely quoting from an Internet source, found by Googling this blog's title, the following is offered:

Apparently, history has not been kind to old Gus Maverick, who was probably the original maverick, who died in September of 1870.
Conservative author William Safire wrote a book called “The New Language of American Politics”.
In it, Old man Maverick, Texas cattleman of the 1840s, refused to brand his cattle, because it was cruelty to animals.
His neighbors said he was a hypocrite, liar and thief because Maverick’s policy allowed him to claim all unbranded cattle on the range.
Lawsuits were followed by bloody battles and brought a new word to our language.”

Had he been an ordinary citizen, other ranchers would have taken his unbranded cattle grazing on the open range and marked them with their own brands.
But because Maverick was so influential, and owned 385,000 acres, he claimed any unbranded calf as his own, and got away with it.
Soon the name “maverick” was derisively applied by cowboys to all unbranded cattle.

John McCain and Sarah Palin may claim to be modern-day mavericks with the hope it lands them in the White House, but the label fits the legend in other respects.
In their personal and public lives, they do what they want to do regardless of how it may impact others, just because they can get away with it.
That’s nothing different than what we’ve had in the White House for the past eight years.


Maverick Is Who's Name?

Past Democratic Party leaders tell the story that John McCain negotiated for two months with them to abandon the Republican Party at around the same time that Jim Jeffords crossed the aisle.
Apparently, one of McCain's top aides came to them in 2001 to initiate these discussions, which were later strenuously denied.

At times, McCain has done his best to look like a Democrat, or at least espouse their views.
Recall too, the flirtation from John Kerry and the Democrats in 2004 about McCain serving as his running mate?

Instead, McCain scotched the rumors, ran himself, then when that failed, campaigned for George Bush and other Republican candidates in the 2004 election, despite being treated very poorly by Bush, especially in South Carolina.

Had any defection to the D's occurred it would have effectively ended any McCain presidential bid, which is the prize he covets, because he already had trust issues with Republicans, particularly the extreme right wing and the rabid evangelicals.

Even now, in his friendship with Joe Lieberman, McCain is trying to have it both ways - all the while knowing that he absolutely has to please his fellow R's

So, with his political history in mind, was his choice of a VP running mate really the move of a 'maverick'?
I think not.

McCain's new ad proclaims: "We're worse off than we were four years ago.''
How about 8 years ago?
That would also include the Iraq debacle that he has so consistently supported.

But McCain likes the "maverick'' label, since the Washington Post first called him that in the early 1990s, as he sponsored a reform-minded agenda in the Senate.
When McCain defeated Bush in his party's presidential primary in New Hampshire in 2000, he declared on his way South: "We have sent a powerful message to Washington that change is coming.''
Didn't happen, at least change that was necessary or justified.

Now with Democrat Barack Obama running on a promise of "change,'' and connecting McCain with Bush, as being "in the pocket'' of Big Oil, McCain is coming back with more promises that he'll "reform Wall Street, battle Big Oil'' and "make America prosper again.''
Fat chance.
The difference between being a Senator and President is like a Picador compared to a Matador.
They both face the bull, but one is on a horse, prodding it with a long spear, while the other stands before the bull with only a cape and sword.
Now, he's recruited a partner who sits on that horse side-saddle and does his prodding for him, verbally!
Can't beat that for a spectacle, can you?
But, would you buy a ticket to see it?

John McCain should know that "Washington's broken,'' because he's been a part of it, maverick label or not.

I think the maverick McCain is gone, if he ever really existed.
He seems to have been either rustled and branded like other cattle, or stampeded into the wilderness where he probably belongs!
How can a man who supports Bush 90 percent of the time, from the economy to energy to the Iraq War, be a maverick?
Compounding that, he has picked a woman who aims to out-Bush Bush on that remaining ten percent.
Do real mavericks run nasty, dishonest campaigns like W ran against him in 2000?
What happened to the 'Straight Talk Express'?
Who will tell McCain that his maverick image is wearing no clothes?
Instead, he comes dressed as a political conformist who bows to the slightest whim of his handlers!
And, hides behind a petticoat!

It seems to me that 'Re-Branding'' was something that appealed to the Republican Party not long ago.
But, how does that square with 'mavericks'? Aren't they 'unbranded' cattle?

A few definitions rom Wikipedia:
Livestock branding, the marking of animals to indicate ownership

Human branding, as body modification or punishment

Brand, a name, logo, slogan, and/or design scheme associated with a product or service

Brand management, the application of marketing techniques to a specific product, product line, or brand

Nation branding, the application of marketing techniques for the advancement of a country

Personal branding, people and their careers marketed as brands

Co-Branding, associates a single product or service with more than one brand name

Branding agency, a type of marketing agency which specialises in creating brands


The American Marketing Association (AMA) defines a brand as a "name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of them intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers.

Therefore it makes sense to understand that branding is not about getting your target market to choose you over the competition, but it is about getting your prospects to see you as the only one that provides a solution to their problem.

The objectives that a good brand will achieve include:

Delivers the message clearly
Confirms your credibility
Connects your target prospects emotionally
Motivates the buyer
Concretes User Loyalty
To succeed in branding you must understand the needs and wants of your customers and prospects. You do this by integrating your brand strategies through your company at every point of public contact.

Your brand resides within the hearts and minds of customers, clients, and prospects. It is the sum total of their experiences and perceptions, some of which you can influence, and some that you cannot.

A strong brand is invaluable as the battle for customers intensifies day by day. It's important to spend time investing in researching, defining, and building your brand. After all your brand is the source of a promise to your consumer. It's a foundational piece in your marketing communication and one you do not want to be without.

Have the R's achieved these goals?
Does the image of a thin-skinned, lying, fat elephant with glasses and a hair-do adequately describe what the R's stand for these days?
These folks can sure dish it out, but they can't take it!
We can do so much better!

"Liberals by nature look for information and conservatives look for ammunition"