A couple of days ago, I had paused at a red light and noticed that the car in front of me was festooned with bumper stickers. The one that particularly caught my eye, the largest and most prominently placed, read “OBAMA CARES,” with a big red heart between the two words.
Short and sweet: “Obama cares,” the exact sentiment that the entire election seemed to come down to for a lot of Obama voters. Plus, it’s a clever inversion of the negative implications of one of the unpopular albatrosses that ought to have sunk the president, but did not: Obamacare.
Below that one was another prominent sign. This one was considerably longer, with a somewhat more complex sentiment to convey:
Turn off FOX
Bad news for America.
I’m not sure whether the driver wanted official action on this pressing concern—whether Fox should be banned—or whether she (I think of the driver as a “she,” although I couldn’t see through the SUV’s rear window) was merely exhorting anyone following her to take the initiative and turn the channel if tempted to view that dreadful station.
And the phrase “bad news for America” was deliciously ambiguous. Did she mean that Fox itself was a bad thing for this country; that having an alternate, somewhat more conservative (or somewhat less liberal) perspective on the news was somehow going to harm the country or its populace? Or did she mean that the Fox reporting of the news was “bad,” as in inaccurate, poorly done, or pessimistic? Or did she mean (and I very much doubt this was her intent, although it would have been mine) that the desire to silence Fox was bad news for freedom of speech and/or the press in this country?
I tried to find a photo of either bumper sticker for this post, and I quickly discovered what the latter one was all about:
So I learned that apparently there’s some sort of campaign to keep Fox from being shown in airports or dental offices or wherever there might be a public TV. That’s sort of humorous, in a way, because I wrote a post not long ago complaining that Fox is never, never ever, shown in such venues, and that it’s always CNN. I’m not asking for much, just that once in a blue moon the station might be Fox instead. But apparently no Fox news is good news for my bumper-sticker-sporting fellow-driver.
As for “Obama cares,” I couldn’t find a photo of the variation with the heart, which might have been nice for Valentine’s Day. But I did discover that “Obama cares” was a very popular slogan for bumper stickers this election cycle, and apparently an extraordinarily effective one at that:
Obamacare did not help the President get reelected Tuesday, but exit polls suggest the narrative that Obama cares more may have been the difference between winning and losing…
On the attribute of whether the president or his GOP rival was ‘a candidate who cares about people like me’ Obama had a massive lead over Romney.
Here’s a version that may have worked to drive the message home about both candidates—an emotion-laden twofer, as it were:
And in a way, that pretty much sums up the president’s approach to the 2012 election.
It worked, too.