Hopper’s Whopper


I never watch political ads on t.v., mainly because I never watch any ads – I record all the shows I watch on my DVR, and fast-forward through the ads. I save many, many hours of my life over the course of a month by doing this. So I haven’t personally seen the ad to which this Oshkosh Northwestern editorial refers, but I think it is notable that such a centrist newspaper has called out Randy Hopper, the incumbent Republican State Senator, for literally lying about his Democratic opponent, Jessica King, in his recent ad-

When does a political ad stretch and twist the truth so blatantly that it crosses the line into an outright lie? It is not always apparent in the sea of asterisks and other official explanations used to support the conclusion that a candidate’s opponent does not support motherhood or the flag.

Yet even if voters expect hyperbole and leaps of logic when a distorted image appears on a TV screen, they don’t expect to see the complete disregard for the basic facts found in an ad paid for by State Sen. Randy Hopper, R-Empire.

The last segment of the ad accuses Jessica King, his Democratic recall opponent in the 18th Senate district, of supporting a pay raise while she served on the Common Council. Not only is that false, she in fact, voted against the ordinance raising the pay for council members and the mayor in 2008, the ad uses distorted math to arrive at a purported percentage of 63 percent that she increased her own pay.

Hooper’s whopper strains his credibility on three counts: Saying King supported a pay raise she voted “no” on, using fuzzy math for a gotcha percentage and taking a logical nose dive that a her vote in favor of the city budget is an indication of support for a pay raise.

Did I mention that the recall election is in two weeks? 14 days? 336 hours?

3 thoughts on “Hopper’s Whopper

  1. On a side note, your comment about skipping ads via the DVR worries me. How long before advertisers start demanding to run ads DURING programs? I’m not just talking about product placement, which is already here, but the full treatment, split screen sharing of visual real estate? Like most commercial web pages now do and you have to shut out the noise just to focus on the article you’re interested in. I think all the giant HD screens that we’re all snapping up are just waiting to subdivided and soon your program will appear in a center box surrounded by other scrolling ads screaming for your attention, something like Fox News and CNN do now? The thought of that is almost enough to make me want to read a book, oh wait, Kindle now features ads…better head down to Borders for a hard copy…oh wait… :(

  2. I’ve already seen a few of those during-program ads, mostly from the networks promoting other shows. The solution, it seems, is to go to a completely pay-for-view model.

  3. Let’s hope that will be an option, but don’t forget cable is already at least a pay-to-view model for which we to pay for the privilege of watching commercial saturated programs.

    I continue to subscribe to HBO because they’ve been the lone holdout for pay-for-quality shows, not even succumbing to the temptation to put their watermark logo in the corner of the screen like their premium channel competitors do. Even though I could watch HBO programming on DVD I feel like I should support them the same way I do PBS & WPR, but unfortunately that means paying for basic cable to be able to then add HBO…but don’t get me started on that.

    And apparently Fox is getting ready to charge for their internet viewing option as well according to this story today, with ABC right on their heals.


    Ironically, maybe it’s the political ads that will save us. They seem to thrive on the traditional model, but who knows, maybe streaming distorted facts along the bottom of the screen during American Idol will accomplish even more, especially if they can charge us in the process.

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