Larry Sharpe’s TV Ad

NY Libertarian Governor candidate Larry Sharpe released this new TV ad on Facebook today.

33 thoughts on “Larry Sharpe’s TV Ad

  1. wredlich Post author

    I’m putting this as a comment rather than in the post.

    This ad is a classic libertarian train wreck. He’s squeezing as many ideas as he can in the short time of the ad without any common theme. What’s the message? Where’s the classic 3-word phrase (build the wall, I’m with her, lock her up, stop wasting money)?

    And his first point is the kind of thing that scares the crap out of many mainstream voters – Replace K-12 with K-10.

    I keep hoping the end result of this will prove me wrong and he gets 300K votes. He’s working hard and doing some good things. But I don’t think this helps.

  2. Andy

    I think that the ad is good for the most part, but I agree with Warren that the K-10 part should have been left out of the ad. It makes it sound like he is getting rid of 2 years of education, which to many people, makes it sound like he wants people to be less educated. His campaign positionon that issue is too complicated for that short of a sound bite.

  3. Anthony Dlugos

    While I wouldn’t go so far as “trainwreck,” I’ll agree with WRedlich’s general critique of the ad, especially about the first point LS made. Too scary.

    Why even mention bitcoin? Too esoteric.

    On the other hand, I’m gonna give the “B-“ RC gave, because LS is such a good speaker relative to what Libertarians are used to, with a great delivery. That alone might grab a sizable chunk of votes.

    Why not mention the idea about auctioning off bridge/subway route sponsoring rights in exchange for paying the repairs? Seems like New Yorkers would love that idea.

  4. wredlich Post author

    Why are libertarians incapable of understanding this basic concept in electoral politics:

    THREE WORD PHRASE

    I Like Ike
    Build The Wall
    I’m With Her
    Yes We Can
    Where’s the Beef
    Morning [Again] in America
    Peace and Prosperity

    FOUR WORD PHRASE
    Make American Great Again
    It’s the Economy Stupid
    Thousand Points of Light (oh I really hate that one)
    Give ’em Hell Harry

    And my all-time favorite:

    Don’t change Dicks in the middle of a screw – Vote for Nixon in 72

  5. fred stein

    Pretty bad ad. Glad I didn’t waste my money on this campaign. He was all over the place and nowhere.

  6. robert capozzi

    AD,

    A downside to selling naming rights to bridges and tunnels is that it might alienate upstaters, a significant dynamic in NY politics. Selling Erie Canal locks would not likely move the dial. I wonder if NYS has full title to these assets, too. Not sure….

  7. Andy

    I think the public will really like the idea about the bridges and whatever else about transportation because it would pay for their maintenance without raising taxes or spending any tax money.

  8. robert capozzi

    AJ,

    Yes, but, for ex., the Brooklyn Bridge is owned by NYC, not NYS. LS is running for guv, not mayor.

  9. robert capozzi

    WR,

    Short catchphrase/slogans can be great. It’s the economy, stupid, wasn’t a slogan in an election, however, iirc. I’m not sure HST used “give ’em hell, Harry” or not. IIRC, someone said it to him. A thousand points of light, iirc, was a convention speech line, a pretty good one.

    A great slogan captures a mood that a candidate wants to project. LS hasn’t landed on one that I can discern, but you are correct, he should. K-10 ain’t it.

  10. Jonathan Makeley

    Robert Capozzi,
    The idea of trying to sell the Erie canal locks would probably alienate even more voters. You’d likely have a string of historical and community groups condemning such a proposal, and using their local influence to oppose it.

  11. Eric Sundwall

    Since when is “Open Source” an industry? And how does it help farmers? K-10? Yeah, average voter, let’s spend two hour unpacking that. Did LS have a bad experience at family court, or is he just listening to the cranks pestering the campaign about child support? B-minus? Really? Blockchain is not Bitcoin, btw. One is based on the other. This is sure to scare the Plattsburgh voters, ugh.

    Commercials can also make emotional impact too, like Reagan’s Morning in America. The other option is to attack one’s opponent with visceral outrage or humor. America’ not great? Jews can’t dance? Twelve years ago , the Hammer of Truth crowd would be calling for a shave and tie for LS.

    Getting into the debate and making an impact may be the last stand for this campaign. Stop with the bridge nonsense . . . Trainwreck? Nah . . . MTA analogy . . . perhaps.

  12. wredlich Post author

    I don’t think LS’ proposal is to sell the locks. I think he’s proposing to sell naming rights to things like the locks (and bridges, etc.).

    Robert – New Bold Ideas is a three word phrase. But it was not emphasized in the ad – only said it once. And is that something that resonates with voters? I don’t see it.

    Here’s something a little silly that might work: “I’d Marry Larry”

    A bunch of people say: “I’d Marry Larry because …”

    (Mom type) … he’ll save our schools
    (Young man) … he supports gay marriage
    (Young woman) … he respects my rights
    (Old male veteran) … he supports veterans

    Then his wife:
    I married Larry because he’s a good man.

    (Close with Larry) It’s time to divorce Cuomo and Marry Larry. (hold up a ring?)

  13. Anthony Dlugos

    “Did LS have a bad experience at family court, or is he just listening to the cranks pestering the campaign about child support?”

    I was wondering about that too. He vigorously railed about that issue in his Rubin Report interview.

    I’m not suggesting people…and probably a lot of men…don’t get screwed in family court, but it just doesn’t strike me as an issue that requires the attention of a governor, or that will attract a lot of voters.

  14. Anthony Dlugos

    “I’d Marry Larry.”

    It would fit nicely on a button, and straddles the line between humorous and the call to action that sometimes marks a good political slogan.

    Off the top of my head, I would have started the ad with LS quickly referencing his time as a Marine, connect it to outside the box, creative thinking, then suggesting that sort of thinking is what caused him to realize the two major parties aren’t working, then a couple, three, creative…not fringy…policy ideas.

  15. robert capozzi

    WR,

    I dunno if I’d Marry Larry would work for a L candidate. It MIGHT work for a R or D. L is still foreign to most voters, I’d say. It might work to comfort voters, but a 3rd party candidate is not comfortable. Glossing over that fact will not fix the perception, is my sense.

    If the LS campaign doesn’t care to elevate New Bold Ideas to a tagline, maybe:

    Tired of Being Last?

    This could riff off the fact that NY is dead last in economic freedom. Make some punchy statements about how NYers are leaving due to high taxes and few middle-class opportunities. It’s increasingly a state for the very wealthy and the poor. A bit negative for my tastes, but it’s something NYers know and can relate to.

  16. robert capozzi

    more…

    NYers tend to be prideful. They know theirs is a high-tax state, and that people are leaving. They probably DON’T know they are last. That might get their attention, and LS has 2 months to get their attention.

    Morning in America (or NY) worked for Reagan in 84 after he righted the ship. This is not a situation where gauzy messaging is called for. A bit pugnacious messaging is, I suggest.

    I never looked into Ventura’s first run for guv of MN, but that might be something to look into, as it’s the closest analog. Of course, he had name ID already.

  17. wredlich Post author

    I didn’t mean to suggest “Marry Larry” is the best option. It’s just an idea that will stick in the minds of those who see/hear it. That’s my point.

    I couldn’t come up with any good rhymes for Sharpe (carp? harp?). Sharpe As A Tack?

  18. robert capozzi

    Help make history is aspirational, but I’m not sure what that means to Joe Public.

    Break the Two Party Monopoly is too inside baseball, IMO.

  19. Anthony Dlugos

    “Help make history is aspirational, but I’m not sure what that means to Joe Public.”

    It would probably scare people away.. Voters don’t want their world turned upside down.

    “Break the Two Party Monopoly” doesn’t have the requisite humor, and again, I don’t want to scare people away.

    Both of these slogans are thematically confrontational. I don’t want to play up the change involved in voting Libertarian, I want to play it down. What’s the big deal about voting Libertarian? It shouldn’t be a big deal. We’re the sane ones now.

  20. robert capozzi

    AD,

    Bingo on “confrontational.” Unfortunately, confrontationalism is built-into the DNA of the NAPist thought system. They’ve been going all Chicken Little, catastrophizing, for 50 years now.The sense of impending doom is what motivates the NAPist, coupled with a sense of sanctimony about themselves, and accusation for those who haven’t drunken their Kool-Aid.

    The NAPist welcomes a collapse of the western world, and the hope that after the dust has settled, people will remember their Pied Piper tune. Led by a remnant, the masses will flock to the NAPist baptismal.

    I can’t say their “dream” is impossible, but it does seem unlikley to me, given the fact that the world has tended to ebb and flow, and, we now of decades of evidence that the NAPist dystopian outcome has not happened.

  21. Scott Lieberman

    New York state is a train wreck, only being propped up by the immense wealth of NYC, Long Island, and Westchester.

    This TV ad is not going to inspire independents to vote for Sharpe. K-10 education might be a good idea, but it is a fringe issue.

    He should only talk about one issue per TV ad. The economy and taxes are the big issues in NY, so that’s would I would talk about first.

    Larry has a compelling life story. He should have an ad or two devoted to that.

  22. Paul

    Two thoughts:

    Is he campaigning to Libertarians or New Yorkers?

    Is he running for office or a public education campaign?

  23. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    September 14, 2018 at 13:02
    ‘Help make history is aspirational, but I’m not sure what that means to Joe Public.’

    It would probably scare people away.. Voters don’t want their world turned upside down.

    ‘Break the Two Party Monopoly” doesn’t have the requisite humor, and again, I don’t want to scare people away.’

    Both of these slogans are thematically confrontational. I don’t want to play up the change involved in voting Libertarian, I want to play it down. What’s the big deal about voting Libertarian? It shouldn’t be a big deal. We’re the sane ones now.”

    One could say the same things about Barack Obama’s “Hope and Change” and Donald Trump;s “Make America Great Again”, and those were both successful campaign slogans.

  24. robert capozzi

    AJ,

    One COULD say that only because such matters are subjective. To me, MAGA and Hope & Change are not confrontational. I suspect that focus groups would generally find along the lines that I suggest.

    The NAPist mindset leads to outlier outcomes.

  25. Scott Lieberman

    Donald Trump has a lock on media attention due to all of the stupid things that he says. Larry needs to break through all of that noise.

    Mr. Redlich’s “marry Larry” slogan is just corny enough that it might work.

    If I were Sharpe’s campaign consultant I would very seriously consider making a pilot ad using Redlich’s suggested copy above, and try it out with a small TV buy. Just make sure that the chyron specifically says “Larry’s wife” when she shows up on screen.

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