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    The Pain and Drama of McCain & Obama

    Only the Name has Changed

    Now that my Media and Presidential Election class is over at Trinity,
    it's time I returned back to my main page, which was formally known as
    "A Slug's Life". I've since renamed it "The Wading Pool" but I'll
    probably name it something else when I think of something better. I'm
    planning to do some upgrades in the near future but it might have to
    wait until the New Year since I'm scheduled to work 17-hour days for 7
    of the next 9 days and then I'll be driving to Ohio shortly after
    Christmas. It doesn't help that I can't access this site from work
    anymore because Squarespace is much too sophisticated to bother with
    anyone who is running Internet Explorer 6, and when I tried to shame our
    IT vendors into upgrading to IE 7 they pretty much pooh-pooh'd me. (Have
    you ever been pooh-pooh'd? It's rather irksome.) So the best I can do is
    post from my email, which doesn't allow embedded files or hot links and
    is actually pretty boring. Maybe it's time to leave Squarespace and find
    another sea to swim in. We'll see.


    Fare Thee Well, Bloggers!

    I just wanted to close out this section of my blog by wishing everyone a happy holiday season. I had a wonderful time in class and it was really cool to work with all of you. (Does 'really cool' sound too 80-ish?) I am going back to my main page of the Blog Sea shortly and hope that you'll drop in and visit me sometime. (I really really need the traffic!!!)

    Colin, thanks for another great class, and good luck with the Hartford Courant. I, for one, will continue to subscribe... 


    That's all, folks!!!


    Catching a Ride on the iA-Train

    I got this off the link to Courtney's post. I think it could have some implications to how Team Jindal tries to disseminate and manage information on the Internet. It's called a Web Train Map from the website iA, or information Architects.

    Ithink it's pretty fascinating that a group has spent this kind of effort
    tracking down the interrelational properties of websites. I'm thinking
    we could use it to help spread useful memes and possibly to interrupt
    the flow of damaging ones. For instance, if we have a new idea for
    Bobby's ( I won't call him BJ anymore) social agenda, we get our
    bloggers to start posting strategic comments on the social news line.
    Someone makes a disparaging review of our candidate on the news line,
    and we know exactly where to head to get "upstream" and "downstream" of
    this information so that we can attempt to "vaccinate" the Internet of
    these viral messages. But we can only do this with a highly engaged and
    dedicated blogging team. It would definitely be worth having a
    conversation with the iA group to see what kind of support or
    consultation they can offer us.



    Castles in the Sand

    Perhaps the biggest news story I came across while on my brief stint in Denver this weekend was the announcement from the Rocky Mountain News that it is up for sale and will be entertaining offers for the next 4-6 weeks. According to this report from the RMN itself, if no purchaser is found within the specified timeframe, owner E.W. Scripps could shut the newspaper's doors for good. This from a paper that has been in circulation for 150 years.


    Then I came home and was reading the Sunday Hartford Courant this morning, where I saw another article about planned closings of the New Britain Herald and the Bristol Press.  Are these actions related to the tanking economy, the influence of the Internet, or both? For a lifelong newspaper reader like myself, I'm apprehensive of how our news will be affected when the number of outlets for different voices grow smaller and smaller. I personally am not confident that the blogosphere is going to be able to fill in the void, and I can't imagine that the suviving papers in these markets--the Denver Post, the Hartford Courant--are very comforted by the demise of their competition. I knew newspapers were in trouble, but I thought they still had at least five years to get their acts together, and I'm amazed at how much the Internet waves have already eroded at their bases.


    Initial Thoughts

    Note: This post is a copy of an email I sent to Team Jindal on Wednesday. Just thought I should throw it up on the blog (not literally) so that I can show that I haven't just been sitting around in my boxers watching Nickelodeon the past three days. I will hopefully be resuming blogging tomorrow now that I am back in town and have Internet access again.

    Initial thoughts:

    • Along the 50 state/435 district strategy lines, I think one method could be to staff each of our Jindal District HQ office with young, computer savvy volunteers to serve as local bloggers and vloggers. These volunteers are plugged into Jindal HQ through Twitter or similar technology and can be dispatched whenever a presidential candidate makes an appearance in their district, to cover news storyin their districtperceived by Jindal HQ to be of impact to the campaign, and, conversely, to write/film about issues to alert Jindal HQ of rising issues or news stories that otherwise could catch the campaign off guard. These volunteers would also spend a significant amount of time surfing blogs and emails looking for emerging memes that could be damaging to the Jindal image, and work to thwart off anything viral before it picks up speed on the internet. This includes oversight of wiki entries andGoogle management.
    • As a sports-minded consultant,I think there is an excellent opportunity to benefit from BJ's youth and energy. I would propose acampaign theme along the lines of "America: Strong, Fit, and Lean" or something similar. Strong, meaning strong military and defense, strong infrastructure, strong economy. Fit, meaning physical fitness (i.e. combating child obesity), mental fitness (fixing the No Child Left Behind program and upgradingthe educational programs in our cities, combating Alzheimer's to court the elderly vote), and perhaps even spiritual fitness, promoting traditional family values and the role of God in marriage, inviting open discussions about religious diversity in America and working to disrupt the cycle of religious brainwashing that is the backbone of Al Qaeda. Lean, meaning cutting back on government waste, fraud, and abuse, and demanding the same from Wall Street and MainStreet alike.
    • Some early media ops: Between now and 2010, we want BJ andhis family to engage in an exerciseprogram and healthy diet, if they aren't doing so already. We want to establish working relationship with other fitness-minded Republicans, especially Gov. Schwarzenegger of California, who could become a key ally and perhaps a cabinet appointment after BJ's election. The Winter Olympics come to Vancouver inwinter 2010--we want to contact the IOC as early as possible to see if we can get the torch to run through Louisiana and get the Jindal family to carry it. I'd also like to seek out anopportunity to challenge the Obama administration in a White House basketball pickup game after Obama has the presidential basketball court renovated, whichhe supposedly is planning to do.