Friday, August 13, 2004
Today's burning question -- can one legitimately promote so-called "traditional family values" in the so-called "heartland" while running an ad campaign centered on tits, ass, and camel toes to peddle one's so-called "beer"? -- as viewed through the prism of Pete Coors's race for the Senate. Take it away, E.J. Dionne:
Conservatives say they revere both traditional values and market values. But those two sets of values so often contradict each other that conservatives have to hide their eyes -- from the twins ads, for example -- if they are to pretend to be consistent.And last but not least, don't you hate it when writers ask questions to which they already know the answers?
What is the most powerful force for "permissiveness" in the United States? It is not liberalism. It is the free market's use of sexuality to sell products. Children in our country are exposed to many more sexual images in television ads -- especially those selling beer -- than in raunchy magazines sold under the counter. The beer ads run heavily during sports broadcasts watched by sports-minded kids who love healthy competition, achievement, discipline and victory. Rather "conservative" values, no? . . . .
Do conservative politicians who care primarily about taxes and the interests of big business merely use "conservative values" as a slogan for attracting votes from the less well-off who gain little or nothing from their economic programs? Are conservatives perfectly happy to condemn liberals for being "permissive" but unwilling (especially after a primary) to say a critical word about their business allies when they use sex to sell products and increase profits?