The media blackout has been good for Ron PaulSubmitted by laissez faire on Sat, 11/19/2011 - 11:43
America loves an underdog not only for sentimental reasons, but because choosing dark horses adds weight to their votes, making them feel more powerful. Election after election, frontrunners rise to near inevitability only to be brought down to size by a wave of support for a dark horse. Ask President Howard Dean, he's lived it, as have many other frontrunners since. In the days before the Dem Iowa Caucus, I remember Chris Matthews saying 'it looks like Howard Dean would run the rail in first place all the way to the nomination.'
The other reason the blackout has been good is message control. As a professional advertiser who buys media, it's tempting to yearn for free publicity, maybe even prefer it. But I try to remember that paid advertising is message control. In Ron's case, the message control of tv/radio/print/direct mail advertising in Iowa is better than if he got to speak more in debates or if his straw poll wins were interpreted as deserving the label of frontrunner. Face it, Ron's ideas rarely sell in 30 second debate allotments, especially when they are spouted in response to weighted, gotcha questions. (example: no free govt health care)
Yet ads deliver the message more clearly, often better than Ron himself. Look at what our money has done for the campaign in Iowa:
"The Bloomberg poll showed that about two-thirds of Iowa respondents had been contacted by the Paul campaign by phone, e-mail or a knock on the door, more outreach than any other candidate... Because of strong fund-raising from small donors on the Internet, the campaign has been able to saturate the Iowa airwaves with ads. It has outspent all others — $2.5 million on TV and radio commercials in Iowa and New Hampshire (where a Bloomberg poll had Mr. Paul in second place this week behind Mr. Romney). It plans to spend $4 million more before the voting in those two states begins in less than two months."
Call Iowa. Donate. Get to a NH rally. Send help to Nevada. Comment on the forums of those state's online newspapers.
It's much more productive than wailing over the media blackout, was has been a net positive for Ron Paul.