President Obama tonight with a speech, not about health care, it’s about his political future, about his political fortunes, and we’re going to get into a great bit of analysis of this as the program unfolds before your very eyes and ears today. Just out, an Associated Press-GfK and I don’t know who GfK is, I couldn’t care less, all I know is it’s an Associated Press poll that ‘says that public disapproval of President Barack Obama’s handling of health care has jumped to 52 percent.’ Fifty-two percent disapprove, but this is the second or third poll that the number is over 50% of people that disapprove of this, which makes this speech even more remarkable tonight because the president is going to try to convince members of Congress to vote against the will of the American people. That’s what’s on tap tonight, and it’s all about him, it’s all about saving his bacon. ‘The same survey shows that 49 percent now disapprove of his overall performance as president. In July, just 42 percent disapproved of how he was handling his job.’ So his disapproval numbers are rising all over the place issue by issue and in general.
There’s an AP story: ‘Obama Tries to Build Momentum for Health Overhaul.’ He’s causing the momentum to be lost by showing up on television all the time. There’s a great piece at the AmericanThinker.com today from a guy who spent 30 years in the advertising business who analyzes Obama’s incredibly inept sell job on this whole program from the standpoint of an advertising executive. I’ll explain more on that, but, first, do you remember, folks, I’ve always said to you that over the years when you have been very concerned about media attacks on me, your beloved host, I’ve often consoled you, and I said, ‘Folks, don’t worry. The media didn’t make me. You did. They cannot break me; they didn’t make me.’ That’s why I’ve never had a PR flack; that’s why I’ve never relied on press coverage to build anything here, I’ve never catered to it, I have never sought it out. I don’t care what they say, you know the drill, because if you allow yourself to be made by the press, they can tear you down any time they want to.
Now Obama is a different story. Obama was made by the press. He gave one speech at the Democrat National Convention in 2004 and he lived off that speech sort of like Governor Cuomo did in New York in his San Francisco speech, and then the media decided to start propping this guy up out of nowhere when everybody thought Hillary Clinton was going to be the coronated queen of this country. Al of a sudden, a year-and-a-half before the election here comes all these puff pieces about Obama all over the place and the media made this guy and that means the media, if they want, can break him. And I don’t know — there’s a story here in The Politico — I mean this is obviously State-Run Media off the tracks here. I don’t know that they’re going to break Obama. Certainly not in the old-fashioned way, but a lot of people in his team, a lot of people that support him are getting a little disappointed. The magic is gone. The whole reason for having Obama in the White House is gone. His cult-like personality appeal, all of that’s gone. It was never about substance with Obama. It was all about change and hope and all these vague platitudes, and the vague platitudes have not transmitted themselves into any kind of solid substance.
For example, here, from a surprised Associated Press — I don’t understand why this is news. ‘Taxpayers face losses on a significant portion of the $81 billion in government aid provided to the auto industry, an oversight panel said in a report to be released Wednesday. The Congressional Oversight Panel did not provide an estimate of the projected loss in its latest monthly report on the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program. But it said most of the $23 billion initially provided to General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC late last year is unlikely to be repaid.’ That’s news? Anybody with half a brain could tell you the money was down a rathole. It was never going to be repaid. It was a boondoggle. In fact, the only reason for this bailout was not to save the car companies, it was to save the unions, it was to save the unions and their health care plans, and also it was so Obama Motors could get rid of the big SUVs that he doesn’t like you driving, the Hummers. The Hummer is now made in China. The ChiComs are making Hummers and we’re making these little bubble cars and talking about windmills.
This is all about taking control of people’s lives. It’s a great little microcosm for what health care will lead to, which, can I boil health care down for you, the essence of it? Life and decisions have consequences. Here are the two choices. The two choices are this. You can let the government run health care and deal with the consequences, or you can have the private sector as it has been doing, provide health care and deal with the consequences. The choice is yours. And people are choosing the private sector in overwhelming numbers. One of the points this advertising guy makes — maybe it’s not the advertising guy, another story. It’s a good point whoever made it, I’ll give credit when I find the story here in the Stack of Stuff. It’s basically that you can’t create a crisis when people are satisfied with what they have, and the vast majority of Americans are satisfied and like their health care coverage. They have disagreements now and then with the insurance companies, but they’re not in a frame of mind here where the whole thing is broken, throw it away and put it back together and that’s what Obama is trying to sell and he’s making it worse every time he goes out and talks about it, and people are worried about this.
The Politico story: ”Obama’s Media Skills Face Pivotal Test’ — This summer marked the fifth anniversary of the Democratic Party’s swoon for Barack Obama.’ It also marked the fifth anniversary of the media’s swoon for Barack Obama, but they don’t mention themselves in the story. Yes, this summer marked ‘the fifth anniversary of the Democratic Party’s swoon for Barack Obama, who thrilled millions of people hearing the young state senator for the first time with words that set his image as a dazzling unifier in an age of mean and divisive politics,’ and they quote some of the words from the speech. And five years later, they say, ‘President Obama is losing his argument. Far from taming the forces of accusation, personal malice and ideological fervor, Obama and his signature health care agenda this summer became their target — and at least partly their victim. What’s more, as he prepares to address Congress in a nationally televised speech Wednesday, one of the main pillars of Obama’s reputation — that his gift for healing words would combine with the power of his biography to transcend the rancor of modern politics — has never looked more wobbly.’ What a paragraph!
The paragraph happens to be accurate as hell, but what a paragraph. ‘His gift for healing words when combined with the power of his biography to transcend the rancor of modern politics.’ That’s what all of these doofuses thought he represented and half the people, if not more than half who voted for him, thought that that’s what he represented. And he’s not that at all. He’s a hard-core leftist radical with dangerous designs on the future of this country. At least State-Controlled Politico is now aware that Obama has never looked more wobbly. I’ll tell you why, Politico. He wasn’t built on substance. He’s built on you guys. You guys are the ones who put off this notion that he had this gift for healing words that would combine with the power of his biography to transcend the rancor of modern politics. The rancor of modern politics will never be transcended and people who have studied it know it. There are always going to be passionate debates about issues, there are always going to be multiple sides to an issue. There’s no one person that could come along, no earthly person that could come along and erase all of that and you guys in the media are the ones that put that gibberish out there.
So they made him. They furthered all this and now they say he’s looking wobbly. ‘Even some Democratic strategists say Obama and his vaunted political and communications teams should have seen it coming. ‘The true impact of congressional or party leadership is declining every day compared to the power of blogs and talk radio,’ said longtime Democratic pollster Paul Maslin. ‘It was surprising to me that Obama and company were caught unaware by this. They should have been first to realize you can mobilize people and use forms of communication to get people riled up.’ Maslin, who resides in Madison, Wis., said he’s seen the power of the right wing even in his liberal college town, where there have been conservative tea parties to rail against Obama’s plans to increase taxes on the wealthy to pay for his expansive agenda. ‘They’re not the majority, but they’re vocal,’ Maslin said. ‘And they’ve used guerrilla tactics to dominate the debate.”
We are the majority, Mr. Maslin, that is the whole point here. But this is a Democrat consultant, this is an amazing statement: ‘The true impact of congressional or party leadership is declining every day compared to the power of blogs and talk radio.’ Note he doesn’t say cable TV in here. Blogs and talk radio. ‘Surprising that Obama and company were caught unaware’? They’re not unaware. Barack Obama tried to tell the Republican leadership not to listen to me early on within two weeks of being immaculated. They knew what they were up against. They just are so filled with elitist arrogance and ego that they thought this magic gift of healing words combined with the power of his biography would transcend the rancor of modern politics and render people like me voiceless and powerless. They knew what they were up against. In their arrogant condescension they thought, ah, Obama can handle it. That’s why they’re lost because the one tool they had has vanished. The substance of what Obama stands for and believes in and has done is not working and is not pleasing to people.
What is this going to be, speech 112 on health care? And he’s seeking to reignite the momentum? And there was a great question from Jake Tapper, said, ‘I’ve looked at the transcript of the speech and there’s nothing new in it, there’s not one thing new in this speech. Why give the speech?’ Gibbs’ answer was typical Gibbs, ‘Why, there’s a lot new in here.’ I’ll give you the quote here in just a second. In this Politico story, they quote another veteran Democrat strategerist, Bill Carrick. He said ‘Obama faces a ‘big dilemma’ in determining whether to take on the likes of Glenn Beck, Matt Drudge and Rush Limbaugh. ‘To do that he has to consider, a) does it diminish me and b) does it make it harder to create a bipartisan legislative environment.” He’s not about bipartisanship, you idiots. He has not held a meeting on health care or on anything in the Oval Office where Republicans were included since April! He can’t unite his own party. They’re trying to slough this problem off on recalcitrant Republicans, but that’s not even a factor.
So The Politico guy is, whoa, he’s gotta really worry here. Does he take on Limbaugh or does he not? Does he take on Beck? Does he take on Drudge? And if he does that, does it diminish him? So, anyway, here’s State-Controlled Politico really, really worried and they all ought to be because the single reason Obama is where he is has been exposed as phony and fraudulent.
RUSH: Now, Jake Tapper of ABC News, asked Robert Gibbs, the best-ever press secretary, a really good question. Jake Tapper, said ‘Well, okay, one other question. You talked about all the things the president is going to do in this speech, and with the exception of the last one — how he moved forward from here — none of them are new. He’s been making the argument about security and stability for health care reform, what it means to people who have insurance, what it means to people that don’t have insurance, what’s not in the bill. With the exception of how we move forward, we’ve heard all this before. The American people have heard all this before.’
Gibbs said, ‘No, I don’t — I don’t — I don’t know that! I don’t know that they have heard it in as big a forum clearly, directly from the president as they will tomorrow night.’ So here we have the guy who, since the end of January, has made 112 speeches and remarks and counting — the man who is the greatest communicator in the world, the man who has this remarkable talent to end rancor with his gift for healing words and the power of his biography to transcend the rancor of modern politics. The very same guy is finally going to give a speech that will finally and for real, truly, not kidding this time, explain everything to us about health care reform. Really, truly, this is it, after 12 and counting tonight’s speech is the speech. ‘This time you’ll understand it,’ said Gibbs. ‘We really, really know that you’ll understand it,’ and Tapper said, ‘There’s nothing new in this.’
There was some talk that Obama would come out in his speech tonight and mention a possible inclusion of tort reform. That’s not going to happen! He’s gonna plug the public option. He’s going to go along with Pelosi on this. He’s gonna plug the public option. Unless they’ve got a fake release of the text of the speech that Jake Tapper and a lot of people have seen in which there’s nothing new in it, then they’re still relying on the power of Obama’s personality (deep, pompous breath), his marvelous biography, his communication skills combined with the power of his biography, to end the rancor in modern politics. And yet he hasn’t met with Republican leaders on health care since April. And they talk about needing a bipartisan bill.
There’s no need. Oh. And Ben Nelson today was on Fox Snooze around 11 o’clock. He said, ‘They can’t count on me.’ He’s a Democrat from Nebraska. ‘They can’t count on me for the 60th vote. I put my country and state ahead of my party, and I don’t like this public option business. What we need to be doing is reforming some things in the private sector. The private sector is working.’ Now, this… (laughs) This is a pretty damning statement. Oh. And the press is also putting out misrepresentations about the viewpoint of Olympia Snowe. Apparently she’s not all caught up in the public option. So it’s a very fluid situation but it is a wobbly time for President Obama — and it’s going to get even worse, I predict, because his poll numbers go down the more he is on television.
RUSH: Here’s that story that I quoted earlier or mentioned earlier from the AmericanThinker.com by Sammy Benoit: ‘Having spent much of the past thirty years of my life in the advertising industry, the flaws of President Obama’s health care message are apparent and massive. Most people outside the ad business will tell you that commercials try to beat you over the head to make you buy what you don’t need or want. In truth advertising that doesn’t address the public’s needs or wants does not work. On top of that, if a consumer keeps being exposed to a message that does not meet a need, they begin to tune it out quickly; it’s called wear-out.
‘Finally if the message keeps changing, consumers get suspicious’ of the product ‘Sound Familiar? That’s because almost since his inauguration [Obama] has been beating us over the head with a heath care message that does not address the needs or wants of the majority of American voters. His heath care effort is designed to make sure everyone has heath care, pre-existing conditions are covered and there is a public option to ensure greater competition to keep prices low. Voters don’t have a perceived need for the president’s health care plan. Polls show that between 85-90% of voters are satisfied with their present health care coverage.
Covering everybody is a noble effort, but voters are feeling the effects of a deep recession and are worried about the federal deficit. Just like a commercial for a new Mercedes Benz, most see universal coverage as something nice to have, but maybe another time.’ This preexisting condition business, can I give you an illustration here of why preexisting condition coverage in health insurance is silly? You’re going to pay out the wazoo for preexisting coverage. Let’s say you do not have fire insurance in your home, and all of a sudden your house starts burning. And instead of calling the fire department, you call an insurance company and say, ‘Hey, I need to buy a policy, a homeowner policy that protects me against fire.’
‘Oh, okay, we’ll see about…’
‘No, no, no! I need it right now. My house is burning down.’
Do you think the insurance company would sell you an insurance policy in the middle of a fire destroying your house? It’s the same thing as when you have a preexisting medical condition and you want to be insured for it. You’re going to pay out the wazoo for it, folks, and Obama promising that you’re going to be insured to preexisting conditions is BS. It isn’t going to — or it’s going to break the bank making it happen. It’s just ridiculous. If you really want to save money, there are two things you can do: Tort reform and make health insurance portable from state to state so that you can buy a policy from California if you like it, a California company. Right now you can’t. I mean, that would lower costs. There are so many things we could do here in the private sector — and if you just want to insure the uninsured, it’s about 12 million people. We talked about that a couple times and most recently yesterday.
‘America is a still a center right country believing in free enterprise. The president has not explained to voters what a public option will do to satisfy their needs. Obama has also not laid out how the public option, his ‘New and Improved’ health insurance will provide a tangible consumer benefit. They see a government who can’t manage costs and budgets on existing heath care plans. The [president’s] message has not explained how his product is better than what people already have.’ See, it’s not about that. This guy Sammy Benoit is exactly right. Obama can’t explain that because it isn’t better! It’s not designed to be better. It’s not about health care. It’s about control of people’s lives. It’s about the growth and expansion of government. It’s about the usurpation of individual liberty.
‘Pundits have commented that almost every time Obama goes on TV, voter support for ObamaCare slips. In advertising that is called wear-out. Before it was purchased by Nestle, I worked on the Carnation Pet Food account. The agency I worked for developed a great commercial for Mighty Dog, a canned dog food product. The TV spot featured a great testimonial, a dog barking with subtitles. It was the kind of commercial that broke through the clutter of other ads to generate much attention. Within a few weeks of the commercial airing it stopped being effective. Because the commercial received so much attention, people began to tune it out very quickly.’ I can give you an example of this. Have you noticed…? It’s football season now, and have you noticed all these Coors ads?
Nothing against Coors here. I mean, you know I love private sector companies. But these Coors Light commercials with these ex-football coaches in the postgame press conference taking questions from these goons about Coors Light? They’re so stupid, they’re memorable. But they wear me out. They’re just so stupid. They’re stupid by design. The whole concept is stupid, but the coaches’ answers have nothing to do with the questions being asked. They’re just stupid. They’re supposed to be. I mean, like I’m talking about it. But I’ll tell you, it wears me out. Well, same thing here. ‘President Obama has over-used the bully pulpit of the presidency. Because every time the POTUS makes another speech, or has another press conference he receives a high level of attention. Just like the barking dog in the Mighty Dog commercial it is losing its effectiveness and people are tuning out.’
And, by the way, each of his primetime press conferences ratings have gone down with each successive one. It’ll be interesting to see the ratings tonight. ‘Sometimes it seems that the POTUS changes his health care message more often than people change their underwear. It was heath care reform, it was insurance reform, then it was health care reform again and then it was insurance reform. The President has even changed the villains; first it was the Republicans, then it was talk radio, then Fox News and the CBO. There was one period where the President dropped all the villains and tried to convince rabbis, priests and ministers, to deliver sermons on ObamaCare because it is a moral thing to do. Originally the famous public option just had to be in the plan and now… well maybe it does and maybe it doesn’t.
‘While it is sometimes necessary to refine or change product attributes and messages after the launch of an existing product, changing advertising messages for product during its introduction creates confusion and suspicion. It should be done with great care. It seems as if [Obama’s] original message was not well thought out and they keep changing it on the fly. This is why there is so much confusion about ObamaCare, there has been so many messages,’ because he doesn’t have a plan! This is the thing that I have continually observed. He doesn’t have a plan. He can’t point to page 44 and say, ‘No! See, right here it says there aren’t any death panels.’ He can’t do that. The only bill out there that anybody can read and check up on is the House monstrosity.
‘When I worked on that same pet food account, we were about to introduce a new dry dog food called New Breed. This was going to be the big star of Carnation; New Breed, the Best Tasting Dog Food. The product was tested against all major competition and dogs preferred New Breed’s taste. It had the biggest ad budget by far, of anything in the Carnation stable of products. Shortly after it was introduced, our claim was challenged by a small regional dog food brand so we had to change the message to New Breed, the Best Tasting NATIONAL Dog Food. That lasted for about a week, when we got a challenge from a small but national canned dog food product. The commercial was changed to New Breed, the Best Tasting National Dog Food IN A BAG.
‘One month later Purina launched its High Pro dry dog food which also tested better. Rather than change the message to New Breed, Dogs Think it Tastes Pretty Good — Sometimes, a totally new campaign was developed and the product was off the market six months after that. Consumer-centric advertising, crafting your message, addressing the needs and wants of the end user and doing it in a way that does not turn off consumers is important to make your message work. In the end, it is the hubris of the POTUS, creating an ever-changing confusing message that does not address the needs of the voters along with over using the power of the presidency as a messenger combining to keep the public from truly listening to his pitch.’ I think they are listening. I don’t think they like what they’re hearing at all. He’s just relying on that old magic, the cult of personality. That’s gonna be relying on tonight, too. The great gift! ‘Harry…’ he said to Dingy Harry once. ‘Harry, I just have a gift.’ Well, the gift has vanished.
RUSH: I’m getting lots of e-mails from people, ‘Rush, when you had your TV show you always made signs for us to put at the bottom of the screen during Clinton State of the Union speeches. What would a good sign be tonight?’ I got the perfect sign, if you want to put something on your TV to keep you focused, ‘Words,’ dot-dot-dot, ‘Just Words. ‘Words… Just Words,’ a little piece of paper bumper sticker size, well, depending on the size of your screen, your flat screen, whatever, put it on there and keep it up there as you watch Obama’s 35-minute speech where he answers all the major questions.