With the 2012 election season in full swing, you’re going to see a lot of commercials for fast-talkers in between the commercials for fast-food. But is there really that much of a difference?
8) Familiar Packaging, But What’s actually In It?- Like McDonald’s ‘golden arches’ and cookie cutter decor, the Republican visage is instantly recognizable. Just like McDonald’s is never going to challenge your expectations with gilded facades or velvet drapes, you would never mistake a conservative politician for anything else, except for perhaps a real-estate agent. And in both cases, you never have to wonder what’s on the menu, you know in advance; it’s the same no matter where you are.
Just as an order from McDonald’s comes wrapped and bagged in that familiar comfortable design, a Republican’s ideas come wrapped in well-worn phrases, radiating positivity. Both are carefully crafted to distract you from the quality of what they’re serving; cheap, warmed-over, indifferently prepared, and made of ingredients that would make you ill if you knew what they were.
7) False Claims Of Shared Values-McDonald’s commercials are full of images and people who seem to pat you on the back, and say, “Ain’t America grand?” Smiling people on the beach, on the bus, and by the barn. They depict an America that’s diverse on its surface, yet blandly homogenous in its behavior and desires. And really, if you take any McDonald’s ad, replace the Quarter-Pounder with an American flag and you’ve got a standard Republican campaign ad (Unless they’re ‘going negative,’ in which case they’re likely to show their opponent setting fire to bibles with your grandma’s last dollar. So, to give credit where credit is due, at least McDonald’s doesn’t run attack ads on Burger King.)
But does McDonald’s really care if your first date is a success? Or if the soccer team is well fed after the big game? No. They care about you buying as much of their product as they can convince you to, while giving you the least amount they can in return. Similarly, Mitt Romney may kiss your baby, or stand in front of a closed factory looking grim, but if your child gets sick and your unemployment runs out, suddenly your values and his are going to be very different.
6) You Should Probably Forget Your Last Experience With Us- Ba-Dah Dah-Dah-DAH! ‘I’m Lovin’ It!’ It’s what you crave now. It looks and sounds really good. But wait a minute. It’s the same stuff they showed you before you bought McDonald’s last time…Were you ‘Lovin it?’ Was it the treat they assured you it would be, the treat they say it’ll be this time? Probably not. Probably won’t be any better this time.
What are the Republicans saying they’ll do this election year, that they haven’t said before? As political entities, is a Romney presidency going to taste any better than a Bush presidency. It’s the same ingredients, prepared by the same people. Will you love it? Did you last time?
5) Short Term Satisfaction Trumps Long Term Planning- McDonald’s is nearby, and the food is already waiting for you. It’s just so convenient. Just pick it up and eat it! You know it’s bad for you in the long run, and you’ll pay for the convenience somewhere down the road, but you could really use something fast.
How much did you get from the Bush tax cuts? It probably seemed like a pretty good deal at the time. It might not have seemed like a good idea to take revenue from the federal budget, but hey, you got a little bit of money in your pocket immediately. And how could that be bad?
4) The Environmental Impact On McDonaldland Just Keeps Getting Worse- In 2010, it was estimated that McDonald’s had sold almost 250 billion hamburgers, most of them served in paper, although they sold them in styrofoam for a while, too. All that paper, and plastic, and styrofoam, and god knows what all else. Landfills overflow with their packaging, in many places it’s rare not to see the littered detritus of their wares lying around in the street. How many acres of forests have fallen to hold Big Macs?
Likewise Republicans care little for the wake of filth that trails behind their insatiable appetite for oil, coal and natural gas. Carbon emissions and global climate change are dismissed as junk science, even as the ice caps melt away.
3) What’s Offered Vs. What’s Delivered- Man, the Big Mac looks great on paper, or on screen, doesn’t it? The one you actually get? That looks a little different. The odds of you getting a McDonald’s burger that looks like the one in the ad, are about the same as the odds of all that wealth ‘trickling down’ into ‘job creation.’
2)McJobs For All!- McDonald’s has plenty of job openings, if you don’t mind a job with no future and no benefits. Republicans would also think you should just get a job at McDonald’s. Plus in the Republican Party and McDonald’s both, it’s much better to be an investor than an employee…Or a customer.
1) Regret- That sick feeling you in the pit of your stomach.