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Grassroots Dems will be running these billboards around Sioux Falls and later this year in Rapid City, South Dakota.

The Argus has a story on the billboards.

Democrats are tired of letting Republicans own the faith and values message, so they are taking their case to the streets.

A billboard campaign was launched Monday by the Minneheha County's Grassroots Democrats, letting people know what their party stands for, says chairwoman Lisa Engels.

Green, black and white signs at Seventh Street and Minnesota Avenue and at Russell Street and Westport Avenue say: "Jesus cares for the poor, so do we. Democrats make America stronger."

"The whole thing behind it is to counteract the Christian right and their so-called monopoly on religion," Engels said. "They have been able to get out there and convince people that the flag wraps better around them than it does us, and that is not true."

Very nice.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:45 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I love that!! (4.00)
    I hope they can extend the effort into all of the Red States.
    •  Yes, it would be better to (4.00)
      edit the damn ads before pasting them up.
      •  Amen (none)
        Great ad, terrible typesetting!

        Culture of life? More like Republican cesspool of violence.

        by vancookie on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:49:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly. (none)
          It would come across as more positively aggressive and less whiny like this:

          Jesus Cared For The Poor
          <center>So Do We</center>

          •  Cares (none)
            Right on, but we should say "cares" and not "cared"

            Don't Christians talk about Jesus' love in the present tense?  Not being Christian, I don't know for sure.

            •  Typo (4.00)
              Or thinko, since I'm one of the rational ones that realizes Jesus has been dead for ~2000 years.
            •  Plus, (4.00)
              You don't want the odd tense shift between "Cared" and "Do."

              I also have a problem with the inconsistent capitalization. In headline writing, it's acceptable to make conjunctions and short prepositional phrases lower-case, but you should only do this in the middle of a sentence or clause. Ideally, the billboard would look like this.

              Jesus Cares for the Poor.

              So Do We.

              /Style Nazi

              I'll tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it, and reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see it.

              by Hard Left on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:34:44 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  all you guys... (2.00)
                should get the nuts to put your own billboard up if you feel so damn compelled to rip on the message.

                at least there's a billboard that's up.  You guys represent the all words no action part of the Democratic party.

                •  Speak for yourself. (3.40)
                  I'm going right to their Web site and volunteering my services as a editor/proofreader.
                  •  naw, (3.00)
                    so if you do donate your services.  great.  the fact still remains that you weren't an initiator.  Plenty of followers in this group with no strong leaders.

                    It's shitty english spoken by a dopey president that   trumped the Dem's hyper-analytical world view.  your "services" could be counter-productive in this environment.  yeah, that's right.  not every democrat is a lit. grad with a 580,000 word vocabulary.

                    •  So you find (4.00)
                      it's more productive to criticize those who are offering to help and improve?

                      I just don't see where your anger is coming from--it's a glaring error; it can be fixed easily.   That's all folks are pointing out.

                      I understand the bitterness about being beaten by the cheating, daddy-gonna-save-my-ass "C" student who sits in the WH, but I don't think those posting suggestions here deserve the scorn you're levelling at them.  

                      If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                      by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:34:48 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Seriously now (4.00)
                      Hyper-critical? Does it take having a Master's in English to fix poor phrasing?

                      Poor design inhibits proper communcation. Enough said.

                      •  Yes, and (none)
                        Capitalizing Like This is for Titles, Not Sentences, Unless You are German.

                        It's a readability issue --

                        Capitalizing like that is for titles, not sentences, unless you are German.

                        Genuinely conservative Republicans are now boiled frogs. The fire under the pot is the radical right.

                        by technopolitical on Thu May 12, 2005 at 02:40:09 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  For the love of god (3.33)
                        the message is plain as fucking day for anyone with 5th grade reading skills to understand. ANYONE who reads this will understand it, and it's a good message.

                        This thread is the epitome of the analysis paralysis that is so prevalent in the Democratic community.

                        Kudos to the people for getting this up there, I could fucking care less if the style isn't exactly up to snuff for the Madison Avenue ad wizard crowd and English majors on this board.  The people we are trying to reach voted for a man who can't speak English, so let it go!!

                •  We love the message. (4.00)
                  But we just hate the way it's presented.

                  Future ads like this will be much more effective if they take in our suggestions.

                  Believe me, as someone who has dabbled in marketing, communications, and journalism, these little things count.

                •  Nope-- Words & form matter! (3.77)
                  The billboard's meta message is "we don't know how to use standard English."

                  It's hard to get the message when my fisrt thought is: <cringe> "comma splice"-- it needs a semi -colon at minimum to fix it.

                  Especially when it's a bill-board sized error.

                  We're Democrats; we can get the message AND the format correct.

                  If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                  by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:02:46 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  guess what... (2.60)
                    properly formatted English doesn't win elections.            It may just have the opposite effect given that numbnuts won TWICE.  A guy like that shouldn't even have been able to get 10% of the votes.

                    "We're Democrats blah blah blah".  Yeah, we're democrats that got punked by an dope with a shitty command of English.  still don't get it do you?

                    •  Um, (4.00)
                      Your tone has got some issues.

                      I don't want to win by becoming like them-- and standard English is not too high a standard to expect.

                      Why should we make a mistake when we can get the language right?

                      Dumbing ourselves down, co-opting Repug. stances, and moving more towards the center is also not the way to win-- and believe me, I "get"  a LOT of stuff, so you can drop the condescension.

                      If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                      by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:23:27 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  aww... (1.71)
                        how cute...using the preface of "issues" because you don't like my tone.  Hey, guess what?  Not everybody uses the same tone as  you do.  What bubble do you live in?  My tone is the tone that I use in my everyday life.  Ah, i see the problem here.  You probably don't interact with same types of environments that I do.  Sorry, I'm a lower middle class dude who lives in lower middle class neighborhood who didn't grow up in the nice socio-ecnomic bubble of the middle class and don't have that nice touchy feely view of "reality". If you don't like my tone, uh, well, tough shit I suppose.  Be comforted in the fact that my "tone" is 100x as harsh when dealing with repugs.(man, it's a good thing that the lower lower middle class isn't as wired up as the rest of the country. there'd be so many offended people on this site."

                        Btw,  I think your tone has some issues.  Hell, not just the tone, but your whole frame of reference. It stinks of elitism.

                        Also, that billboard isn't dumbed down.  It made it's point.  What would your option be?  Some verbose Kerry type explanation?  Not me.  I'd rather have 100 high school grad votes than 1 vote from a Ph.d in Eng. Lit.

                        and yeah, u still don't get it.

                        •  Wow. (4.00)
                          Why are you so hung up the suggestion to change a comma to a period?

                          I guess education pushes some buttons with you.  You make some pretty sweeping genealizations there.

                          I'm going to invoke Maryscott's Law

                          Your complaints and our conversation about them have taken up enough of this thread.

                          If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                          by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:40:35 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  How pathetic can you get? (3.28)
                            You "don't want to win like them"?  What, a victory achieved with poor syntax is no victory at all?  If there was ever a better example of the attitude of a loser, I've not seen it.

                            Get this straight: Republicans win in part because they are singularly focused on doing whatever they need to do to win.  If Democrats don't start acting the same way, they better get used to being in the minority.

                            Second, as an editor myself, I can well appreciate the cringe-inducing aspects of bad spelling and grammar.  But over the years I've come to realize that there are few more potent displays of arrogance and elitism than being a style Nazi when it's not appropriate.  Like when discussing a political ad.

                          •  Pathetic? (4.00)
                            How can you possibly call it elitist because I don't think my party is well represented by a huge billboard with an easily fixed mistake?

                            Read some of my posts and my history-- I am an English teacher, but far, far from the "grammar nazi"  and "loser" and "pathetic" labels you've just thrown at me.

                            And you think I"M being arrogant by argeeing that the billboard needs a period in place of the comma?  Sheesh.

                            If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                            by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 06:00:52 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Wha.? (none)
                            Why don't you read what people are saying instead of taking this billboard as an attack on your profession? People aren't saying that the grammar is correct. They, and I, are objecting to your holier-than-thou criticism of said grammar. Stop being an English teacher and be a human being long enough to realize that these people deserve praise for trying to do something, not criticism from armchair editors.

                            You don't want to win like them? Are you kidding me? You are willing to have Social Security privatized, the right to choose taken away, and a flat tax for the sake of punctuation? And what does moving to the center have to do with sentence fragments? I like you are then able to claim people are taking the discussion off-topic. Well played.

                            I'm all for proper grammar, but get a grip.

                          •  If you're all for proper grammar, (none)
                            then what the HELL is your problem with fixing a simple error?

                            And WHERE do you read that I feel English teachers are under attack?  Geez, you're really doing some projecting here tonight.

                            If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                            by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:27:07 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  based on experiance (4.00)
                          I have found that using such an unneccessarily hostile tone towards people has absolutely nothing to do where you live or grew up.

                          From one "lower middle class dude" to another, you need chill the fuck out, seriously.

                          "It's not the gays marrying each other that's ruining my marriage, it's the straight women screwing my husband."

                          by bnanaman on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:29:33 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  I am! (none)
                          Be comforted in the fact that my "tone" is 100x as harsh when dealing with repugs.

                          You're my kind of liberal, dude, even if I don't exactly agree with your original point.

                          I am comforted!

                          the "Internets" are gonna kill you guys. The revolution isn't being televised. -Me, banned on freepland and lgf

                          by quartzite on Thu May 12, 2005 at 02:48:27 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                      •  Okay, but... (4.00)
                        The suggested change is much stronger. And in the end, that's what you want - a strong, compelling message.

                        So, let's not get all over anyone's case on this, let's just work together folks to finally right this ship. I'm tired of the Repubs being portrayed as the savior of the working class. I applaud this group for taking this on.

                        •  Folks are suggesting (4.00)
                          in this thread that we've lost because we're elitist--- but LOOK at the comments here-- we LOSE becuase we turn on each other and can't work together to make something better because we're so busying pointing fingers and beating our own dead horses.

                          I don't see any "latte-sipping academic elititism" in the constructive criticism people have offered for this ad.

                          The billboard message is a good idea;  why can't we use our combined writing, graphics, and design skills to make it more effective?  

                           Would you let your candidate go out for a big speech with his fly hanging open, if you had a chance to tell him to zip it first?

                          If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                          by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 06:12:24 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                    •  Wrong (4.00)
                      properly formatted English doesn't win elections.  

                      You're assuming that people voted for Bushco based on his words.

                      They didn't.

                      They voted for him based on what people were saying about him.

                      I'm with the others here -- this was a really lousy presentation, and it looks awful. And, frankly, this is a persistent and disasterous problem for our side, because we keep doing this to ourselves. It's a good idea, but it needs to be done a lot better.

                    •  Entirely missing the point (4.00)
                      To be effective...truly effective, the billboard should at least be visually appealling.  I would even go one further on this:  I would blow off the font part even if the colors were eye-popping.  It's called "advertising" and it's only effective when done correctly.  Otherwise, it's "Look at that weird sign."  

                      And puh-lease about the current dope-on-a-rope in the WH.  I don't give a flying f*#k that that asswipe can't put together a single sentence.  Our ability to that is is what sets us apart.  Talking like a moron is NOT going to endear me to anyone or anything.

                      •  I totally agree... (and effing Times New Roman?!) (4.00)
                        Billboards aren't cheap, and I think people have no idea how much advertising costs. A small 4x5 black-and-white weekend ad in my third-tier city newspaper costs about $1500 for a single placement. One thousand, five hundred dollars.

                        So Imagine what these billboards cost, and imagine how much more effective it would've been to hire a designer for $500 and have it actually communicate well. Oh, but that's being "elite" and impractical. -eyeroll-

                        It saddens me, I tell ya.

                        •  I would have done it for free. (4.00)
                          So would most of the Kossacks on this thread.  Especially when the "designing" would have taken all of five minutes and would have largely consisted of making sure the spelling was right and the billboard used an eye-catching color, i.e. not olive green.  (Agh! I'm sorry, it's these verdamnt designer shows my wife has me watching.  YOU debate the merits of Debbie Travis's designs compared to Candace Olsen's work and see what that does to your brain.  But I'm still right about the olive green, God help me.)
                          •  Well, I would've as well (none)
                            I guess my point was the "this is grassroots! We don't want / can't afford your high-falutin' design!" piss-n-moaners here have their priorities askew. Plenty of professionals would've volunteered their time to do a proper job, but with very expensive advertising it's of much greater value to pay someone competent than save a tiny bit and have a poor product.
                          •  There's always time (none)
                            to proofread, dammit.  Good grammer don't cost shit (he says ungrammatically).

                            Anyone remember Harlan Ellison's 1971 (or so) rant about Winston's commercials ("Whuddya want, good grammar or good taste?")  He was right then, and he's right now.

                      •  Agree (none)
                        That pea-green color...yuck.
                        Graphic designers use certain colors and styles because THEY WORK.  This is a very good idea, this billboard. I would like to see it like a few of the other commenters suggested. That's not a big deal.
                  •  Get off their meta ass... (none)
                    I'm sure your fisrt[sic] thought was a cringe and a comma splice, but my first thought was "Hey, these guys have a point. And it's cool that they are actually doing something for the party."

                    Don't get all self-righteous on them. Perhaps you don't know how, until six months ago, Democrats held all three federal statewide offices in South Dakota and still hold two out of three. But it wasn't because of meticulous comma work. It was because of the hard work of South Dakotans (e.g. these guys) who have won tough race after tough race. But if you really want to get into it:

                    1. It's simple, high-contrast and to the point. It also feels local, and not federal. I like that.

                    2. Democrats Make America Stronger. I like that too, actually a lot better than "A Stronger America" or whatever Kerry lost with.

                    3. Billboard, not bill-board. It's one word. Perhaps you were looking for "Especially when it's a billboard-sized error"? The hyphen goes between the two adjectives before the noun. How's that glass house of yours working out?

                    I'm probably going to get troll rated, but there are a couple simple facts at play here. People in Rapid City aren't driving around nitpicking billboards with their E.B. White style manuals, these people are doing something productive that is worthy of praise, the grammatical mistake is a mistake but not one that ruins the message, and your own grammar isn't ready for primetime.
                    •  Oh please. (none)
                      Do you really need me to point out that typos in a text thread and mistakes in a published piece are two diff. issues?

                      And if you're going to be critical, please get the details correct.  How do you know what my first thought was?  My first comment was to agree with the three or four who already made the point.

                      My 1st thought was "Great Message."  My second:  "Too bad it's got a huge mistake with that comma."

                      And I promise you, if my words were going to be published in a 20 ft. high public forum, I'd proofread.  

                      All anger and sarcasm aside:  communication is a feedback loop.  The message might be communicated just  fine to some people even though it contains  small errors, but for others, the mistakes matter.  Why not fix what can be fixed and net a wider audience?

                       (Hell, you figured out what I was saying even with my typos, which you were such a gentleman as to point out.)

                      There's more of my feelings on why grammar does indeed matter, in a diary I wrote wrote on this very subject back in the beginning of the year:  Mrs. Brown's Top Seven

                        But I'm not going to troll rate as you seemed to expect. I'm not sure what's up with the ratings you're giving me---don't know what you found "marginal" in my other comment except that you didn't agree with me.

                       Me, I actually welcome hearing other people's viewpoints, especially if they're expressed with some degree of civility.  My own viewpoint here? You are being an asshole about this.

                      If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                      by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:23:59 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  But really (none)
                        My mom was an English teacher too.  I really appreciate English teachers as they are some of my favorite people.  Usually, I find them among the most amusing and witty of my acquaintances.

                        I still call my mom every week to have wonderful literary and political conversations.  She has finally left off correcting my English and that is a comfort to me as nothing puts a pall on conviviality than being put in the wrong.

                        I was in honors English in college.  I became a construction worker and business owner later.  I dont talk so good.

                        I learned that in South Dakota.  There is a unique class structure there which is well defined by the mode of speech delivery.

                        I love that billboard.  As an artist and as a(in my heart always) South Dakotan.

                        First off- the color! Oh, I miss the long tall green grass of Dakota!

                        It is a conversation.  It is like talking to a fellow South Dakotan.

                        Oh, sure, there are a lot of "upper middle class" people drawn in by the financial centers and lured by the 10 best places to live bullshit of the eighties.  And in a linguistic sense they have their "correct" speech, punctuation and phrases.

                        But the style of talking is that understated self-deprecating sense of humor that underlies the spirit of the people.  South Dakota has always had a wonderful school system.  South Dakotans have always been very diligent in the pursuit of education.  South Dakotans have always scored high on the Iowa basics.

                        But then they kinda choose to talk like that.  Educated people who choose to flavor their conversation with the perceived style of the working class, farmers and  self-made businessmen.

                        It speaks to me.

                        And it is meant to reach South Dakotans.

                        (I don't mind if you proofread this, it will make me nostalgic for the way back times when my mom would whip out her red pen and correct my letters to her)

                    •  I live in South Dakoat and (none)
                      you are correct.

                      "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." ~Martin Luther King, Jr

                      by SarahLee on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:59:35 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                •  Yeah... (none)
                  I'd do that, but funds are a little tight right now.

                  And hey, so long as you vote, I'd consider you an "actioned" member of the party. I voted, and I also donated some actual money and time to the cause last year. So, what gives you the right to judge my "actions"?

                  Actually, to be brutally honest, I'm not a member of the Dems. I remain independent - it keeps me from feeling boxed into one side or the other.

                  Just because we're not all shouting our liberal pride from the rooftops and printing up banners doesn't mean we're not just as all-fired committed to progressive ideals as you might be.

                  Lay off, already. Back to the topic at hand.

                •  hey metaprophet... (4.00)
                  so you think it helps the party/cause if we come across as FUCKING FUNCTIONALLY ILLITERATE in five-foot-high letters viewed by thousands of people daily who we're earnestly trying to convince...?

                  if this is just another hollow feel-good exercise, fine - put the sucker up as is, and I'll join the repiggies in laughing at it. If it's meant to be EFFECTIVE, the creators should learn to goddamn proofread.

                  The sound of no hands clapping

                  by RabidNation on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:39:23 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Some PEOple SaY (4.00)
                    KarL ROvE maKes suRE EVery pieCe of DiRect Mail,

                    Every TeeVee & RadIO ad,

                    & eveRy spEEch
                    & 1-Liner given by eveRy party member

                    is meticulously focus-grouped, engineered, and tested so they stay on message and the message goes down easy.

                    We are selling a product. "Good to the Last Drop." "Leave Off the Last S for Savings." "Obey Your Thirst." Those didn't just come around by accident, people worked on them and critiqued them. The same with private accounts, flip-flops, and the death tax.

                    •  It's Hard to Argue with That! (none)

                      They want the federal government controlling Social Security like it's some kind of federal program - George W. Bush

                      by kitebro on Thu May 12, 2005 at 03:09:29 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  No it's not (4.00)
                        Karl Rove didn't sit down and edit every piece of local communication, and he sure didn't vet every one of the rural doorbellers that won the election for them. There's nothing better than a powerful local message. There were plenty of effective third-party pieces of all budgets and all quality levels. The grammar is wrong but, my God, we're talking trees-forest here. You get a lot of grammar leeway in a billboard; it's not the New Yorker.

                        Thank you, South Dakotans, for working your asses off to get Democrats elected in a solidly red state. We aren't going to get our majority back by winning in safe Democratic seats; it's people like Tim Johnson and Stephanie Herseth that are going to hand our party the chairmanships. Say what you want about Blue Dog Democrats being worse than Republicans, but when we win in Red states we get stronger. Whoever wrote this should note but shrug off the criticism they are seeing here.

                        •  Every criticism (none)
                          that's been mentioned has been supportive and constructive-- we're doing what this site does best-- putting our collaborative heads together to help find the best ways to achieve our goals.

                          Now, if you want to argue a deliberate choice between using standard English or colloquialisms to accomplish those goals, that's a good debate.

                          But y'all are calling us grammar police for wanting to fix what appears to be a true error.  

                          Remind me not to mention when you have spinach on your teeth.

                          It's like the mom who always loves you just the way you are, but always thinks your hair needs fixing.  We want the message to be the best it can.  No one's putting down the intent of the S. Dakotans here.

                          If we don't change direction soon, we'll end up where we're going.

                          by mrsdbrown1 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:42:45 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  You or I misunderstood. (none)
                          What I meant to agree with is
                          We are selling a product. "Good to the Last Drop." "Leave Off the Last S for Savings." "Obey Your Thirst." Those didn't just come around by accident, people worked on them and critiqued them.

                          It is and ad. There are tried and true methods that work in that format. The ad, in my opinion, is fine as it is.

                          They want the federal government controlling Social Security like it's some kind of federal program - George W. Bush

                          by kitebro on Fri May 13, 2005 at 06:51:24 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                •  LOL! (none)
                  Hey - I'm just glad to see my homestate do something brazen.  Sure - the billboard could be worded a tad differently.

                  But it's there!

                  Way to go SoDak Dems!

                  ePluribusMedia Support citizen journalism!

                  by kfred on Thu May 12, 2005 at 04:02:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Agreed (none)
                but, I think the other problem you are having here is font size.

                 I think the reason, why the "poor" is in the next line is so they can blow up the size of the text.
                So, smaller text and better phrasing or bigger text and crap english.
                They went for the second option.
                But I agree you should always formulate as simple and space efficient as possible.

              •  I really like the formatting.... (4.00)
                precisely because it doesn't look like it was designed by pros, just by people who wanted to get their message out.  I actually think it works to the billboard's advantage to look so unprofessional, yet readable, it signifies "sincerity"
          •  Make it (4.00)
            "Jesus Cares For The Poor...So Do We" and you'll have a winner.

            Yes, I agree that rationally speaking, Jesus Christ did pass on a long time ago, but many Christians still refer to him in the present tense.

            By the way, I'm a new poster here, and I can't believe I didn't find this place until a few days ago. I guess living in the shadow of the "Antichrist" (here in Focus-on-the-Family Land, Colorado Springs) will do that to you.

            Can't wait to see those billboards'll be hard for Focus to dispute that claim. Until someone "mysteriously" burns them down, of course.

      •  It gives it that... (none)
        ...folksy feel.

        Be the creature. (But not a Republican.)

        by boran2 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:50:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I still feel like this kind of thing is tacky (none)
    But I'll never understand people who are really preachy about religion.

    This coming from someone who's Christian when I talk about Christianity, spiritual when I talk about religion, and agnostic when I talk about everything else.

    It'll be a long time before "my religion is a very private thing" will get you elected in America. And I'm learning how to talk about it confidently.

    •  Tacky is fine (4.00)
      I have no problem with tacky. We're not trying to win a design contest or an aesthetics scholarship.

      Anything we can do to allow people to give themselves permission to think of Democrats as "morally good" is helpful. There's a lot of Kool-Aid antidote to pass around.

      •  "privacy" and "modesty" (none)
        Are something I'm trying to accept as diametrically opposed to public life. Not to say that every person should be shameless and preachy, but that I shouldn't be offended by those who are. It's just the way some people are raised.

        I think the religious left is more personal, like me, than they are public, like Jerry Falwell. And that's hurting the religious left for sure. You can preach without being a fundamentalist. You can lead without being a tyrant.

        That's why I welcome a full on debate with the right about who represents "Christian values". This is exactly what we need.

      •  Orcinus has an article (none)
        discussing the right wing Christian movement.  It's a bit long, but top quality.  Toward the end he quote some researchers who talk about the power of guilt.  The republicans are tapping into collective guilt and manipulating people's emotions to gain loyalty.  This type of billboard is a very good counter to that.
    •  Exactly (4.00)
      The religious right has hijacked Christianity and made it their own domain, in their warped minds at least. It is about time that Democrats spoke out to let the Repubs and especially the religious wingnuts running their party that We will not let them own Christianity. There are Christians and people of faith in every political party around the world.

      We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

      by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:48:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If tackiness lost elections (none)
      ...there wouldn't even be a Republican party any more.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:22:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Mostly I would agree (none)
      . . .but it works in SD.

      Here is the second one.

      "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." ~Martin Luther King, Jr

      by SarahLee on Fri May 13, 2005 at 12:07:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is beautiful! (4.00)
    I'm so glad to see a grassroots organization taking action!

    We can take this country back if we all get involved to make a difference.

  •  I really like that! n/t (none)
  •  Screw this. Let's talk about Kerry. (none)
    Sorry, I thought that was our priority.


  •  Hrm, lets come up with some other slogans, yeah? (none)
    Democrats - The reason you're not getting screwed on social security.
    •  More slogans (none)
      Democrats - The reason you can still breathe on the freeway

      Democrats - The reason sweatshops are only in asia

      (ok so someone could probably do better)

      •  Future billboards ... (4.00)
        Possible ideas:

        Democrats love all their neighbors - not just the ones who agree with them.

        President Bush cut benefits for veterans. Democrats want to give them back.

        What the Republicans want us to say:

        Democrats: OK, we admit it. We cause cancer. Sorry about that.

        Democrats: We've come for your Bibles. Please hand them over.

        Democrats: Barbra Streisand told me to do it.

        A John Kerry billboard, just for Plutonium Page:

        John Kerry: "I supported gay rights before I opposed them. Or ... wait ... I opposed them before I supported them ... or ... hold on ... that doesn't sound right ... ummm ... someone take a picture of me holding this hunting rifle."

        I kid because I care.

        Spare the poor people of Crawford, Texas. Send Bush a one-way ticket to the moon instead.

        by JacksonBlogs on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:02:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  How about (none)

          Democrats gave your parents Social Security

          Democrats continue to protect Social Security

          for you and your children

        •  I still like this one for red states (none)
          What has your party done for society?

          What has your party done for children?

          What has your party done for you?


          Prisoner of hope.

          by comeon on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:59:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Dem love (none)
          >>Democrats love all their neighbors - not just the ones who agree with them.<<

          That reminds me...this morning I was having a nice civil discussion with a Republican cop, explaining to him how the Democratic party is the only one who supports (a) his union, (b) assault weapon control and (c) his job in general.  He told me he's always railing on at home about "damn liberals" for something or another.  So I said, halfway joking, "We love you.  Why don't you love us?"  I got a smile out of him at least.

          You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated.

          by logan on Thu May 12, 2005 at 04:13:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Nice (none)
        I like that meme about sweatshops in Asia.  Sort of a pro-union and nice little hmmmm thought all into one.  

        What about piggybacking ala Schweitzer with the pro-hunting bit?  I'm thinking something about a guy with a binoculars in camo and a duck call or something and noting that Dems keep the environment clean for hunting.  

        Social Security - Working for you since 1935
        (or whatever the exact date)

        Are you a "New Deal" Democrat yet?
        (or a rat bastard grandma robbing hypocrite Republican)?


        Being born again doesn't mean you get it right the second time. -- Larry Gelbart

        by RedStapler on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:06:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  or how about (none)
        I am a lapsed Catholic, but from what I can remember these could be some other choice "frames"

        Dems on Iraq: blessed are the peacemakers

        Dems on social programs: whatsoever you do for the least of mine you do unto me

        Dems on taxes: Give back to ceasar what is ceasar's

        (ok, so maybe the last one won't hunt)

        •  If you remember nothing else, (none)
          love one another.

          Democrats.  Living tolerance.

          When will our consciences grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it? - E. Roosevelt

          by MilwMom on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:22:50 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes (none)
            I keep thinking of the Child's song, the first one I ever learned in Sunday School. It says it all...
            Jesus Loves the Little Children
            ALL the Children of the World
            Red, and Yellow, Black and White
            All are Precious in his Sight
            Jesus Loves the Little Children of the WORLD>

            The song did not speak of just American children or just white children, or just affluent children or just Christian children..

            We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

            by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:53:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  If you want to (4.00)
          win over some red-state working class folks, how about:

          Free Health Care For All!
          Vote Democratic

          umm... no - the democratic party isn't for free health care for all.

          Or how about:

          Bring the Troops Home Now!
          Vote Democratic

          umm... no - the democratic party isn't for bringing the troops home now.

          So maybe while we're thinking up catchy slogans, could we get the democratic party to come up with some actual POLICIES to match our slogans?

      •  That's what I'd like to see (none)
        >Possible ideas:
        > Democrats love all their neighbors - not just the ones who agree with them.

        Here's a sentiment I can live with (and even endorse).

        I can not believe I am alone in feeling alienated by where the DNC is taking the party, as demonstrated by yon billboard.

        Who represents the non-christians?

        Personally, I feel that if the Dems have to be demonstrably christian to win, it's not my party, and they will lose my vote (despite holding positions more representative of my values than the repubs).  Which is not to say I will vote republican; I will just stop supporting the democrats, and find another party or candidate who repesents me better.

        Why are we talking about punctuation?

        Is this a christian nation?  Is that what it comes down to?  The dems have to pander to those who would bulldoze everyone else to win?
        Count me out!

    •  Well, (4.00)
      "Democrats: standing between you and the cat food"
  •  I guess I understand the need for this... (none)
    ...but it bums me out a little, too. As a non-religious person, I can't help but feel, "Oh, no, now the Democrats are pushing religion, also."

    It just seems like this furthers the stranglehold religion has on politics currently.

    But like I said, I understand the need for this in places like South Dakota.

    •  As an agnostic who grew up (4.00)
      steeped in Catholicism, I feel as though we all know the drill.  We all grew up osmotically absorbing biblical allusions as part of the cultural heritage.  As an agnostic, I treat some of it as metaphor and other things, such as Jesus caring for the poor, as a way of life worth emulating.  All religion aside.
      •  Agreed. (4.00)
        I like that it does NOT say "we care for the poor BECAUSE Jesus did." It's more "we're like this guy a lot of people think is cool". Even as an agnostic I feel a connection to that message.
        •  Another agnostic who loves it. (4.00)
          I think it's entirely possible to separate Jesus the moral philosopher from Jesus as God. I think the teachings of Christ are pretty cool, even though I don't believe he rose from the dead. Too bad more so-called Christians don't follow them.

          I think it speaks to the people it's directed to: believing Christians. So the present tense doesn't bother me at all.

          •  As an atheist (4.00)
            Even though I agree with you, I would rather see "Jesus alledgedly cares for the poor, so do we."

            But I suppose that wouldn't be as effective :-)

            •  HAHAHAHAHAHA (none)
              Thank you. This made me laugh out loud!

              But seriously, the billboard's content is a bit... inviting to scrutiny.

              The right wing can claim that Dems are claiming prophet status -- something they do all the time -- but could certainly backfire in this instance.

              I like skwimmer's approach below; deed vs dogma.

              Chaos. It's not just a theory.

              by PBnJ on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:20:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  As an agnostic from the Episcopal route: (4.00)
        I think it would be more pointed as:


        It's not the dogma, it's the deeds.

    •  And... (none)
      ...the fact that is says "Jesus cares about the poor" implies that he was in fact resurrected/still exists/isn't dead.  Which raises a question: what does/did Jesus think about religious pluralism?
    •  Doesn't Bother Me (none)
      I'm also someone who doesn't think that there is a personal god around, but I do like it when moral virtue comes up in the public arena. Democrats care about the poor. Democrats care about the sick. Democrats care about the handicapped. Democrats care about those without jobs. Democrats care.

      Those are moral virtues. If you happen to point out that these are the same virtues that folks like the Buddha and Jesus taught, so much the better. If you want to point out that the Republicans do not practice those virtues, don't do it in the same ad. If you want to point out that some Republicans, including very powerful leaders, are mean, petty, selfish, self-aggrandizing, arrogant, intentionally ignorant and otherwise enemies of what Jesus or the Buddha taught, do it after they take offense at the implied dis of these positive statements.

      Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

      by freelunch on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:10:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agreed (none)
      It's cleary the same thing the repubs do. It also alienates people who aren't Christian.


      •  So What? (none)
        If you don't want to win, just keep on keeping on.

        Our current job is to appeal to the folks who profess to be Christian, because there are a lot of them and they vote.  So long as we do it in a way that cleaves to our true moral beliefs and principles, we might just change America. Otherwise we are just a bunch of winny know it alls.    

        •  Here's why (none)
          It's wrong to marry politics & religion...especially to tie religion explicitly to a political party.  It alienates people and violates many moral norms too obvious to mention.  You can hardly be trusted to instantiate your values if your advertising campaign violates one of your more important values (e.g., the establishment clause of the constitution).  

          This isn't the way to do it any case.  What needs to happen is for religious folk who are concerned about the poor and needy to make a crusade of these concerns--a fervent religious movement of them--in ways that attract considerable media attention.  Simultaneous to this, Dems should talk about their efforts to help the poor & needy and, then, wait for the media, religious people and the public to make the connection.  The dems benefited from Martin Luther King not because he established himself as a democrat but because he established himself as a person whose spirituality required an active concern about matters of social justice and the Dems joined the movement politically not theologically.  

          What is needed is the establishment of a new zeitgeist, not an effective advertising campaign.  

    •  As a jaded atheist (none)
      I'm tired of seeing the Republicans use religion.  If we have to peddle religion to get people to listen to the rest of our message, I'll go down that road.

      And, honestly, there's nothing about the Democratic platform, at least, that is explicitly non-religious.  I don't want to see both parties going on an "I-love-God" fest, but these are the times that we live in and that's what we wrought by abandoning religious American over the past couple of decades.

    •  Not pushing religion... (4.00)
      ...but removing it from the strangle-hold of those who've misused it for too long.

      Religion is supposed to be a personal, spiritual endeavor - it has nothing to do with running the government, as the Dobson-Falwell-Robertson "axis of evil" would have you believe.

      (Hell, add Bush and you get the Four Horsemen! Neat...)

    •  I think the main message (none)
      is that we care about the poor. Framing it in a religious context just allows it to appeal to religious people.

      "It's not the gays marrying each other that's ruining my marriage, it's the straight women screwing my husband."

      by bnanaman on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:41:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I validate your feelings (none)
      But I think it is fighting fire with fire.
      We cannot let the GOP hijack Christianity and make it entirely their OWN religion either . See there are some people who believe that ALL Christians are Republicans. I think the Democrats are addressing that, refuting that and fighting that.

      20  years ago, I would have said NO to either party doing this. ..things have changed, we need to debunk Myths any way we can!!!!!!!!

      We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

      by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:01:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  South Dakota Dems.... (none)
      Religion is a little different in South Dakota than in (insert coastal state/major metro). It's very relevant to a lot of people and their voting decisions. We ignore that at our peril. I respect that you appreciate that.

      However, there's a difference between pushing your religion and telling people that you have faith and it is where your values are derived from. I have little personal religious faith, but I very much understand a person voting on their moral convictions. I know I do. Mine don't happen to come from the Bible, but that's just me. Religious tests for office are bad, but saying that the values of Christianity and the Democratic party intersect is true, relevant, and a good idea.

    •  What they say . . . (none)
      "We have received some hate mail, but most of the feedback has been very positive."

      Executive Director Roger Berggren noted, "I am not sure the 'Jesus cares for the poor' sign speaks to everybody, but it does speak to those Christian progressives that have spent the last two years walking though church seeing James Dobson fliers and hearing their Priests and Ministers tell them they cannot be a good Christian and a good Democrat at the same time."

      Amy Crusinberry a student at Sioux Falls University said she loves the sign. After attending an english class where a student calmly got up and told the class "all Democrats are going to hell," she changed her mind about being silent on faith issues. "For me, a huge part of being a Democrat is changing people's narrow-minded views and I think it's possible. It's just going to take some people who are not afraid."

      Others have expressed concerns that by posting this sign we are promoting a religious piety that imposes our beliefs on others. This is certainly not our intent. Our goal is to reach out to Christians and ask, who really cares for the poor? Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and countless other programs that keep people out of destitute poverty are all programs started by and protected by Democrats. Republicans have been trying to destroy these programs for years by promoting faith without reason. Our June Book Club will be meeting to discuss the book God's Politics, where the author Jim Wallis, a liberal Democrat, addresses these issues of faith and why we can no longer remain silent.

      "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." ~Martin Luther King, Jr

      by SarahLee on Fri May 13, 2005 at 12:13:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Excellent (none)
    That is a great simple message to get across to those on the religious right.  Let them know that we respect faith and work to promote it.

    In some ways we are all cafeteria faithful, we need to convince people of faith that the fare we offer is more hearty.

    The only international crime is losing a war

    by Luam on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:46:45 AM PDT

  •  Nice enough, but why the arbitrary capitalization? (4.00)
    •  Our grassroots left (none)
      often suffers from poor editing, IMO.

      Not that it really matters to me, but I frequently notice it. Still, I've noticed basic grammatical errors on billboards for McDonalds, too, and you know they can afford whole layers of people to look at that shit before it goes up.

      This? Kinda reminds me of my local fruit stands, where "strawberys" and "necctarines" are often sold. Doesn't bother me a bit.

    •  urf (4.00)
      that and the comma splice.

      Someone probably thought "so" and "do" were too short to be capitalized, though you should if you're going to capitalize everything else. Articles and prepositions are generally exempt. You don't need all those capitals in a sentence anyway. Urf.

      Bad font, dark-on-dark type, way too much darkness in general. Not a good visual theme.

      Nice message, though. Glad to see actual principles of compassion and service to others being fought for. I just wish someone would make the ad better.

      In a related story (had to get this off my chest), for reasons beyond my understanding, our local Target reverted back from "10 items or fewer" to "10 items or less". We actually asked about that and she said the signs were sent by the "main office" when they redid the checkout lane signs. Arrrgghh. Why don't people realize that how you say things is important?!

      When dKos does that big ad, we'd better write some damn good copy. We have too much talent around here not to.

      </word nerd rant>

      "I am a patriot, and I love my country because my country is all I know."

      by Aragorn for America on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:06:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sweet! (none)
    It is about time some Democrats reclaimed Christ from the blasphemous christianists who are running amok with their money changers in the temple of our democracy. I bet they're vandalized within hours.
  •  I really like this idea. (none)
    On the other hand, get some advice from someone in the advertising world. Black on Green? What's the idea behind that? I know these are the colors of the state U.

    Here's some basic advice for billboard ads: for maximum impact, use yellow letters on a blue background. It's very easy to see, and this color combination is the one that makes the greatest impact on readers.

    Black on green? Ugh.

    "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

    by upstate NY on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:48:11 AM PDT

    •  I don't know why (none)
      They used black and green, either.  However, they aren't the colors of any of the state universities.  SDSU is blue & gold, USD is red & white, and Augustana is blue & gold.  
      •  Clarification (none)
        I didn't mean to imply that Augustana is a state university.  I included it because it is in Sioux Falls, where the ad ran.  

        I think that the only South Dakota school to have green in its colors might be Black Hills State.  North Dakota's two main state universities have green in their colors, however.

    •  asdf (none)
      I don't think that there's any rational way to explain a whole suite of "design" choices that occured with this thing other than the constraints of MS Word in default.

      Such a shame... the message is so on-target but the delivery blows it big-time. For this billboard, I would advocate for well-set red Garamond type on white field - classic, attention-grabbing, uses patriotic colors. Set the URL smaller in a deep blue and call it a day.

  •  great idea (none)
    slight technical problem - not enough contrast between the 'Jesus cares for the poor...' text and its background.

    'Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it'. - GBS

    by stevej on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:48:44 AM PDT

  •  score point, but... (none)
    Why do we have to make it a religous war?  

    What about the Jews, Musilms, Buddhists, etc.?

    We are one nation, one people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and creeds.  

    Together we can accomplish great things...but if we continue to divide our house we're screwed.

    Proud member of the Social Security google-bomb project.
    Be proud. YOU'RE A LIBERAL.

    by changingamerica on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:50:36 AM PDT

    •  I'm going to have to disagree with you here (4.00)
      I'm not a Christian and I did not read this as a religious war.  In fact, I don't even feel excluded by the message.  The message is a clear one of social and moral responsibility.  It simply says: we are moral people too.  We are responsible people.  We are compassionate people.

      I don't see or feel division here.  This is a message that I, as practicing Pagan, can get behind.  I would bet that many Muslims and Buddhists would be comfortable with it as well.

      With that said, your feelings are real and you won't be alone, some folks will feel excluded by this message.  I'm sorry about that, but overall, I think it is a huge net positive.

      •  i'll tack on my support (4.00)
        as a jew. I'm in favor of helping the poor, and i'm glad Jesus is too, whether or not he's the son of god.

        "It's not the gays marrying each other that's ruining my marriage, it's the straight women screwing my husband."

        by bnanaman on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:51:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I don't see this as waging a religious war. (4.00)
      It is not anti-Jewish, anti-Muslim or anti-Buddhist about it.  I welcome any discussion of shared values between religious progressives and secular progressives.  But the religious war is upon us, we can't ignore it.  We've got Rush Limbaugh telling people that the "religious left" doesn't even worship the same God as do right-wing Christians.
    •  Muslims don't discount Jesus (4.00)
      We believe he was a prophet, just not the son of God.  Everyone would do well to remember that little tidbit before lumping Muslims into the "non-believer" category.  
    •  Fine... (4.00)
      Go to areas with large Jewish or Muslim populations using the following, then:

      "God Loves The Poor...So Do We"

      More general, covers all the bases, same solid message. Done.

      Unless you guys would like to further debate color and font choices some more. :D

      •  "God" (none)
        ...excludes atheists and humanists in a way that "Jesus" does not.  Just my opinion.
        •  Huh? (none)
          Please explain.  I don't see the difference.  Atheists and Humanists put no more faith in "Jesus" than in "God".  However, "Jesus" excludes people of other faiths.

          I view this as sinking, rather than rising to meet the Repubs on the ground they laid out.  Why engage them in this divisive exercise?

          Clinton did pretty well reframing/ refocusing; "It's the economy, stupid".  

          While I can not speak for anyone else, I can say that I am part of the Deomcratic base which is being alienated by this strategy.  

          •  I hope this makes sense (none)
            Atheists and Humanists put no more faith in "Jesus" than in "God".

            Actually, atheists and humanists (in general) have no problem with Jesus, they just don't worship him as God.  Same as muslims and Jews.  Jesus really existed, For us Jesus is more of a historical Ghandi-like figure (even if he was an fictionalized amalgam of multiple people, which is possible), who stood for peace and love and the disadvantaged.  One doesn't have to be Indian to respect what Ghandi was about, and one doesn't have to be Christian to respect what Jesus was about.  Of course that doesn't mean we think that it is ok for public schools and so forth to be cluttered with Christian religious paraphernalia just because it happens to mention Jesus.  But what Jesus was about has very little to do with the Christian religion as generally practiced today, anyhow.
    •  Yes on tolerance and acceptance (none)
      Always and forever .,.tolerance and respect for all religions. I think the difference is that the GOP is not hijacking Judaism or Buddhism and claiming it as their own or saying these people of that religion are their base. It is always about the religious so called Christian right..not any  other religion. They pervert Christianity, if the majority of voters were Buddhists, I am sure they would seek to hijack Buddhism and claim it as their own.

      It has to do with Republicans hijacking the major religion in this country. If these right wingers decided to run for office in India, they would hijack the Hindu faith from the other party and claim it is as their is not the religious affiliation as much as the majority religion of that country, I think.

      We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

      by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:10:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Act Locally (4.00)
      This billboard is in South Dakota.  I don't think the Jewish-Muslim-Buddhist vote is gonna be all that decisive there.

      In East Michigan, I'd say use a different message.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:33:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  New Billboard: (4.00)
    Honor thy mother and father by saving Social Security

    Sponge Bob, Mandrake, Cartoons. That's how your hard-core islamahomocommienazis work.

    by Benito on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:54:28 AM PDT

  •  Guaranteed right radio spin: (none)
    "Democrats are comparing themselves to Jesus."

    George Bush prancing on the aircraft carrier: one of America's worst moments

    by grushka on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:55:42 AM PDT

    •  So true... (none)
      Didn't we learn anything from John Lennon?

      Proud Promulgator of the Agenda of Deliberate Childlessness: we don't have children, we have cats.

      by Mlle Orignalmale on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:17:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Democratic response to the right radio spin: (4.00)
      "Why do you hate Jesus?"

      Pop-gun president lying with impunity, soundbyte policies and photo opportunities

      by Dave the Wave on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:23:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We should all try to be like Jesus (none)
      Although I'm not sure we should go to every rip-off scam church and toss everything around the way that Jesus did.  Then again, he was far more hardcore about countering greed within the Church than most of us are.  

      Really, I think running on Jesus could work for the Dems if they actually talked about what Jesus did.

      •  Even if one is an atheist (none)
        They can be very pissed off that the message of Jesus is being distorted , perverted, hijacked for political gain. As even if some consider Jesus of Nazareth merely a political figure or even a fictional character, his message remains the same. And it is not the message of the religious right and we Democrats can continually pound that.

        We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

        by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:13:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Comparison. (none)
      Then Jesus is the beneficiary of the comparison.  
      After all, Democrats care for the poor now; Jesus stopped caring for the poor 2000 years ago.  
  •  It's unfortunate (4.00)
    I really regret that we have to try and prove we are closer to Jesus than the other guys.  I know they started it, and I know we can't just sit there and let them beat us up on the issue, but I still hate that we have to participate in this lowering of our political discourse in any way.
    •  True (none)
      All the dead Presidents are spinning in their graves. But I guess we can call it a temporary necessity of fighting fire with fire and debunking deeply intrenched myths of the Republican right.

      We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

      by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:15:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Not a bad idea (4.00)
    but the layout is poor.

    Would have been better to have "poor" included in the top line.

    Jesus cares for the poor

       ... so do we.

    Then, again, maybe the poor layout makes you look at it longer

    •  excellent point... (none)

      It does not require a majority to prevail, yet a tireless minority keen on setting brush fires in peoples minds. - Samuel Adams

      by historical wit on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:59:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  exactly (4.00)
      You hit it.

      With that, better type, and major help with the color choices, it would be a damn good ad. I still greatly applaud their intentions even with all of my snarkiness.

      I react more viscerally to bad layout, etc. than most people. The average person reading the ad probably couldn't care less.

      "I am a patriot, and I love my country because my country is all I know."

      by Aragorn for America on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:12:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm glad to hear that, really. (none)
    Green, black and white signs at Seventh Street and Minnesota Avenue and at Russell Street and Westport Avenue say: "Jesus cares for the poor, so do we. Democrats make America stronger."

    Now here's my problem.
    A majority of Democrats voted for a bill that was drafted by banks & credit card companies that is an all-out assault on individual debtors.
    The act will make the middle-class poor, & the poor desperate.
    This recent action makes the statement tap hollow.
    Their support of the imperialist war, which they helped vote 82 billion more dollars for, also makes the statement hollow.
    I'm dissatisfied.  My voice has been stifled completely from any political debate in this country.
    Do you think that looking at a sign like this is enough to keep me & others from becoming violent as conditions get worse?
    I sure as hell don't.  Suffering speaks louder than the media, louder than signs.  The opium of the masses may work for a short while, but it's going to wear off when the real world gets impossible to live in.

    •  Um, no. (none)
      a majority of REPUBLICANS voted for that bill.  A handful of renegade Democrats with ties to Big Credit--just enough to get the abomination passed--BROKE with the party and joined the GOP on it.

      Democrats also fought vainly to get some loopholes in that would have benefited the deserving poor.

      You want to roll back that legislation, better get behind some good Democrats.  I suppose you could get violent instead, but I doubt that would help much. The Republicans have diverted enough money from schools, job training and drug treatment to ensure there's a jail cell waiting for ya.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:40:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Lets get some of that in the red south.. (none)
    even thought Maryland is a blue state, the eastern shore is reeeeed. We could use a sign like that here, it would make for great dinner conversation...

    It does not require a majority to prevail, yet a tireless minority keen on setting brush fires in peoples minds. - Samuel Adams

    by historical wit on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:58:04 AM PDT

    •  Hey, I've got family and friends on the Delmarva (none)
      They're all pretty liberal.  At least Deleware, Virginia, and Salisbury is.
    •  The Eastern Shore is red? (none)
      Really? I go there all the time and am always running into people from South Jersey who keep their boats there. I'll have to pay more attention next time I'm there.

      Nothing left to say.

      by queen crab on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:07:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  asdf (none)
        I think they meant the eastern shore is red "for Maryland".  You know, compared to Baltimore.  The same way the panhandle is "blue" compared to the rest of Idaho.

        I can think of certain Texas activists who would weep tears of gratitude if their CD could be as blue-friendly and moderate as Maryland's 1st.

        "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

        by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:45:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  not just the Eastern Shore (none)
      but Cecil (only partially ES), Harford and 1-2 counties in Western Maryland are Red.

      Folks need to pay attention to MD in the '06 Senate race, it will not be a slam dunk if Steele runs for the GOP.  

  •  Forget Religion, Talk Economics and Middle Class (none)
    While it's great that these folks have addressed the religious question, the best we can do is neutralize the Republicans on this issue.  We need to talk about an issue that we can actually win: economic security for the middle class.

    It's more important that we have billboards that confront the relationship between Big Business and the Republican Party.  The religious issue is just a smoke screen to what is really going on.  Big Business is sending jobs overseas, reneging on pensions, lining the pockets of CEO's, cutting back on health care, etc, etc, etc.  This is the true winning argument. Don't let them control the debate!!!


    •  No, we need to take the fight to them (4.00)
      They think churches are a safe place for them and their message.  They feel confident using the conservative churches as an amplifier of their talking points.  We need to tell them that we are in those churches too and that that their agenda is not the agenda of the mainstream American religion.  

      You are right, we must talk about the economic issues.  We must fight for the middle class.  But as Howard Dean has said, we will not cede any front to them as unwinnable.

      I think of Winston Churchill:

      We shall fight in France and on the seas and oceans; we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our island whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on beaches, landing grounds, in fields, in streets and on the hills. We shall never surrender!

      We cannot let this message of intolerance and hate have refuge in any corner of this nation; least of all our churches.

    •  We can win on religion (4.00)
      The Right makes it seem like they've got control of everything.  Lock, stock, and barrel.  This is far from the truth, and especially so when it comes to religion.

      There are many, MANY Christians out there who disagree with the Right's version of our faith.  In fact, I'd say that those who disagree comprise the vast majority.  On top of that, there are many other people of other religions whom I'm sure are equally disturbed.  Furthermore, there are far greater numbers of spiritually-minded and non-religious people who hold important the ideals espoused by Christianity (eg. peace, community strength, personal morals, help for the underprivileged, etc.) but don't consider themselves a Christian, Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, Hindu, Taoist, Wiccan, etc.

      Is it so hard to bring these folks together to see eye-to-eye?  For progressive Christians to take back what is being stolen from them?  Is the representation of the truth of our faith that unimportant to us?  Do we not care about the lies that are being spoken in God's name, on our behalf, by charlatans?  Is it that difficult for us to join with those who don't share our specific faith, but are equally disturbed by what's going on in this country, to push back against those who are undermining not only the institutions that were set up by our nation's founders 200 years ago, but also the ideals that were given to us 2000 years ago?

      I refuse to believe that this is an impossible situation.  I believe that it is, in fact, a very big opportunity, and that all it will take is people actually standing up and speaking the truth and others who agree with them will stand up, too.

      In fact, you know what...if anyone has suggestions on how I might go about doing this, please let me know.  I mean, it's time someone got off their butt and did!

      Form SS-5: "The identity document must be of recent issuance so that we can determine your continued existence."

      by EphemeralNotion on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:28:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We can win on religion (4.00)
        The absurity is that we are losing at all on religion.

        Jesus was about tolerance, love, compassion, helping the poor, lifting up the weak, bring hope to the world. Sound familar? Sound like the Republican party? Nuff said.

      •  Jim Wallis at Sojourners magazine (none)
        Fear not.  Help is on the way.

        Here are some things you can do to get started.

        Jim Wallis of Sojourners magazine is one of the standout leaders in the inclusive justice movement.  If you ever have a chance to hear him speak--don't miss it.  He is truly inspirational.  He gave me hope and made me want to go out and storm the barricades.

        Jim said recently that Sojourners is going to put together a database of progressive Christians as soon as his book tour is over.  Keep checking in at the Sojourner's website for more information about this.   Check the remaining book tour appearances to see if he will be appearing near you soon.

        I highly recommend his book if you haven't read it already:  God's Politics.  There are great comments about the book on this Powell's link.

        The Sojourners website also has info about starting some meetups about God's Politics--maybe you could host one in your area.

        The Sojourners cover story this month is "Confessions of a Blue State Christian."  You might want to read that issue, or better still, subscribe.

        Jim Wallis is really on top of this.  He already has a national audience and is getting more and more attention because of the book.  Do not despair.  We are getting organized.  Just keep watching for information.

        You are right.  Dems can retake the moral high ground.  I am feeling more and more encouraged every day.

        Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D.

        by TrueBlueMajority on Thu May 12, 2005 at 03:08:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Good enough... (4.00)
      I can keep going with this all day...

      "God Cares About Your Future...So Do We"

      The message is excellent - you can tune it any way you want it.

      I may just get the itch to have these put up here in Colorado Springs...if anywhere needed to hear this message, it's this town.

    •  wouldn't it be nice (none)
      if we had that tight control over what the elections are about. Those issues are what the elections should be about. Religion is what they will be about, and if we can win that way, then we damn well ought to do it.

      "It's not the gays marrying each other that's ruining my marriage, it's the straight women screwing my husband."

      by bnanaman on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:00:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  NICE NICE NICE (4.00)
    "Jesus was a liberal"

    There's the Dems slogan for 2006 and 2008, lol

    •  A friend (none)
      has a snarky "Jesus was a Republican" t-shirt. You wouldn't believe the thumbs-up he got while wearing it, all from wild-eyed rightwingers. Creepy.

      I'm not keen on religious advertising because it doesn't address me. OTOH, I can see where it's needed, especially in certain areas. And I think it's applicable, as well. The principles of the Dem party are definitely more in line with Christ's teachings than are those of the Repubs.

      Most of the people I've been working with since getting involved with this whole political mess are committed churchgoers. It's stupid to let the Repubs say liberals are godless and get away with it. I also thinks it's dangerous to let them continue to define what a godly person is.

      "Yeah, so what?"

      by Debby on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:22:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  perfect (none)
      short, sweet, packs a punch, plunges a dagger into the heart of the neoconvangelical right
  •  Jesus Hung Out With Prostitutes... (4.00)
    Republicans Do Too

    Jesus Rose From the Dead, Let's Hope the Democrats Do Too

    If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague

    by SnyperKitty on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:01:07 AM PDT

  •  We need to keep kicking (none)
    We need to keep kicking the false identification and branding ads until they start to bleed blue.

    We REALLY need to market and position ourselves better.  This is an awesome step.

  •  7 x 70 times (and more) thank you! (4.00)

     Many of us have, for some time now, been advocating for just such a message!  And others, such as:

     "Jesus came to save us from our sins,
      not our minds.  And he wasn't a

    (note:  the Episcopal Church may have the copyright on that one)

    . . . and:

      "Read the Beatitudes
       before you vote."

    . . . and:

      "Matthew 25:31-46.  What part do
       Rebublicans not understand???"


    . . . religion is not a syllogism, but a poem. H.L. Mencken

    by BenGoshi on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:05:26 AM PDT

  •  Sojourners (4.00)
    For progressive Christians, or anyone else concerned about the Right's usurpation of the Bible for its political agenda, Sojourners is a great place to get started.  These folks are part of a growing take-back-the-faith movement.  Pick up a copy of Jim Wallis' new book, if you can.  It's inspiring.

    Anyone who actually reads the Bible, as opposed to being told by someone what it "says", would clearly see that God is not a Conservative, White, American, that He is not pro-business at the expense of the common man, that war is WAYYYYY down low on His list of priorities.

    Dig a little deeper and you'll find that the people He picked to lead His chosen people weren't always morally pure.  What made them good leaders was that they listened to God's teachings and acted rightly and justly...and when they didn't, well, that's when the wars broke out.  One of the most common reasons for such wars was that the leaders purported to be speaking in God's name when they really were not.

    On the other side of things, Israel's heyday was during the reign of King David, who was pretty much God's favorite human of all time.  David was also an adulterer.  But he repented and God forgave him.  Now, if David had lived in our own time, and been a Democrat...well, we already know what would've happened.

    Form SS-5: "The identity document must be of recent issuance so that we can determine your continued existence."

    by EphemeralNotion on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:13:07 AM PDT

  •  Wonderful BUT (4.00)
    get the punctuation right.

    It should read:

    "Jesus cares for the poor.  So do we. " Those are two separate sentences, and that comma does not belong there. Nothing, zip zero nothing, suggests that this is a run on sentence and since it costs a packet, let's get it right.

  •  Agreed (4.00)
    The idea of this can be carried forward without the grammatical and typographical foibles.  And believe me, I'm picky about this kind of thing.

    I've been pondering a campaign called "Thou Shalt Not Vote Republican," wherein the G.O.P.'s blatant violation of every commandment is enumerated -- perhaps one per billboard.
  •  Stop Dissing the Ad, It Rocks! (4.00)
    There, that's was a comma splice. Bad Grammar!! So what.

    Liberals lose because they get lost in useless details. If you read it, you get it! It's not complicated. It ties Jesus to caring for the poor, and that is the message the Right has tried to get people to forget, with all their attention on "social values." Jesus' Social Value #1 was caring for the poor, the marginal, the sick, the abandonned. Christians know that. It's the core of Christianity. Christianity, Inc. is about Power and Money, Eartly rewards, not Love and Humility, which Jesus taught.

    This ad rocks! I hope a thousand more of these go up, exactly the same. Don't get fancy; don't anyone dare suggest a semi-colon. Keep it simple, stop dissecting and start billboarding.

    •  If poor grammar were all that mattered (none)
      Free Republic would cease to exist.

      The Book of Revelation is NOT a foreign policy manual.

      by Dont Just Stand There on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:50:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You're exactly right (none)
      Check out their website.  What matters is that they get it.  Look at the way they talk clearly about Democratic values: Equality, Opportunity, and Responsibility - they say "these Democratic values are American values."  

      And the message, so simple and so right: Democrats Make America Stronger.

      I don't give a damn about comma splices - we need more Democrats like these folks.

      ...feeling pretty psyched...

      by BrooklynRaider on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:02:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Details (4.00)
      Getting caught up in details is a HUGE problem for the Democrats.

      I've worked on the creative end of poltical advertising before. I remember doing ads for Democratic groups, where they would keep coming back to us with ridiculous changes: they didn't like the shade of blue, or the font wasn't cool enough, or other inane things.

      The ad should get the message across. If it does that, its successful. Everything else is window dressing.

      •  Fundamental difference (none)
        People are details to a real government. Good agents of the government are detail oriented, not obsessed with making history.

        The United States is entirely a creature of the Constitution. Its power and authority have no other source.

        by dangelder on Thu May 12, 2005 at 08:57:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The idea is cool, methinks (none)
      I like the grass-roots style, the taking on of what has heretofore been on Republican turf, etc.

      While I do think it's possible to get mired in details, a little copyediting doesn't hurt.  It refines the message...makes it neater and tighter.

      None of that is excessively fussy, in my view.

    •  right on (none)
      right on with what you said so here is my 2 cents worth 1.The people who did this are trying to help the democratic party and when the "dot the I an cross the T" people talk the way they do IT HURTS THIER FEELINGS. 2.the democratic party still has to many people who take two hours to tell some one how to pick a rock up. the time the ones on this thread who are critical of this billboard made a billboard of thier own it would be 5 miles wide an 10 miles high with letters one inch high trying to say what this billboard says in these few words. 4.billboards are read at 70 miles per hours details are a blur.  
  •  The Jesus Flag? (none)
    "The whole thing behind it is to counteract the Christian right and their so-called monopoly on religion," Engels said. "They have been able to get out there and convince people that the flag wraps better around them than it does us, and that is not true."
    I'm not sure I like the combination of these two sentences. Each is good on its own, but together they seem to connect Jesus and the Flag.
  •  P.S. (4.00)
    I'd like to volunteer my company, which specializes in copywriting and editing, to go over any and all copy for this venture.
  •  excellent (none)
    I want to see more of this everywhere!
  •  It's not about "pushing religion" (none)
    It's more important to break the Republicans' stranglehold on religious people.  Those billboards are exactly what Dems should be doing in the red/purple states.  Jesus -- helping the poor, anti-war, equality and fairness, etc.  

    Some of these might help in central and western PA, too...

  •  That's Pathetic (none)
    That's a truly pathetic example of the Democrats falling into the Republican's game of mixing religion and politics.  How can anybody appreciate this?  It's third-world surreal.
    •  It's not about religion... (none)'s about values. That's what Jesus was about, and that's what Dems/Progressives are about.

      You wanna think of a better way to get that idea across? I think this is the best one I've seen in a long time. As refreshing as it was to hear, Kerry's "my religion is private" stance was not effective for religious Americans.

      Seriously, I dare you to find a more relevant way to relate "Democrat" and "values" without using more than a sentence. Ready? Go.

    •  What are you saying? (none)
      You think Democrats shouldn't care about the poor? Or do you think we should distance ourselves from Christianity because the Gospels are incompatible with our values?  'Cause unless you're saying one of those things, it's hard to see where you get off complaining about the message.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:48:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Say What? (none)
        Where the heck do you read me thinking that the democrats shouldn't care about the poor?  I wrote about mixing religion and politics.  As far as I know, that has nothing to do with the poor.  Nor "values", as the guy above you wrote.  That said, if I were reading this from a "poor" person's point of view, I would find it extremely paternalistic in tone.
  •  where do we send the money so they can (none)
    put more of these up!

    My opinion is that this is a wonderful billboard -- it looks real, and like it's from the real local people of South Dakota.

    not a slick national advertising campaign.

  •  Terms of debate (none)
    I'm against stuff like this because it plays directly into the Republican party's hands by continuing to play by rules that were of the Rethug's creation.  You will NEVER win if you play by rules that were created by the opposition.  You can only win if you show some leadership by formulating new rules.  

    Billboards like this make it seem as if the Democratic party needs to play catch up to the Republicans. We don't need to play catch up.  Our ideals are just fine.  We just need to convince the American public that they are more relevant than who does Jesus better: The Republicans or the Democrats.  In these times of economic uncertainty, shrinking environmental protections, rising health care costs, etc, why do we need to struggle so much with the task of letting Americans know what party is best for America?

    Billboards like this are also going to do little to change the mindset of a political Christianity which constantly reiterates that if you're poor, it's because your not right with God.   This isn't a debate about spirituality,  it's a debate about power, the crux of politics.

    we will fan the flames of our anger and pain/til you feel the shame of what you do in God's name

    by Michi on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:32:17 AM PDT

    •  Great idea. (none)
      While you're at it, why not go and avert your eyes from the weeds in your garden while saying, as loud as you can, "THERE ARE NO WEEDS HERE!"

      Republicans didn't write the rules.  The voters did.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:50:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Republicans DID and DO write the rules (none)
        Who are you kidding suggesting otherwise? Republicans are writing the rules as we speak and they are writing them to their own advantage.  I can give you hundreds of examples, but I won't bore you.  If you haven't noticed that Republicans are writing the rules, you are not paying attention.

         The Democrats, by following the mantra that ALL that Americans care about can be encapsulated within the theme of religion,  are setting themselves up for failure.  Americans have other concerns, but Democratic leadership has failed to create idea/initiative/policies which address those concerns.  I acknowledge the overt religiousity of the American public, but I don't think that Americans spend 24/7 thinking about Jesus, and that other matters do not enter within their political decision-making.    


        we will fan the flames of our anger and pain/til you feel the shame of what you do in God's name

        by Michi on Fri May 13, 2005 at 01:27:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Democrats really really love Jesus. (none)
      Really! Too!
      This isn't about the rules of the game. It's about pointing out how asinine it is for the neoconvangelicals to claim religion and the moral high ground as theirs and theirs alone.
  •  Heh (none)
    billboard advertising is for whores.

    "Democrats: we save the outdoors by exploiting it for advertising"

  •  How about... (none)
    Republicans confuse assholiness with Christianity
  •  Advertising "trinkets" (none)
    Bumpstickers, buttons -- and this kind of cheap billboard -- are addressed to your supporters, not the undecided or the other side. What this sign does, primitively, is tell Christian SD Democrats and those leaning Democrat that it is okay to be Dems! I think that is great.

    As an argument on the other hand, I think we have to win this other ways -- mostly by showing, not telling. Dem office holders have to lead with policies that actually do care for the poor. Dem candidates have to promise what they can really deliver and explain why they can't deliver everthing. They have to treat the electorate as smart and responsible and encourage citizenship to be more smart and responsible.

    Then they can offer encouragement with political trinkets that reinforce the message.

  •  for shame (2.50)
    What Would Jesus Say?

    Probably something like this:

    "How bout you donate that billboard money to poor instead of plastering my mug all over your filthy politics."


    •  donatons (none)
      whatever the cost of the billboard, if its message proves effective and democrats do indeed become the stronger force for America, then the poor will receive a manifold ROI on the billboard investment through policies enacted by our true friends in power. spend a little; gain even more.

      Come on now...

  •  Red states, blue states.... (none)
    red cities, blue cities:  These messages should be everywhere.  

    I was thinking sometime ago, after the horrendous "Credit Card Corporation Protection" Bill passed that I (and my friends who all agree with me), should take out a little ad in our local paper.  This ad would be something like, "Senator Gordon Smith and Rep. Darlene Hooley:  Why do you hate Americans?"  And go on to list the more insane bullet points of that bill.  

     Yeah, I know, the paper probably wouldn't have allowed never know.

    Anyways, it was a thought.  The cost of a small ad is not very much; even I could afford it.  

    Oh....wait, another thought.  Theaters also provide ad space.  On their screens before the movies begin.  That would be another excellent spot to put these messages up.

    Be compassionate as your Creator is compassionate - Jesus

    by smugbug on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:56:00 AM PDT

  •  Jesus Would be a Liberal (4.00)
    Most conservatives I see or hear do not think about what Jesus did.
    He helped the poor and homeless.
    He went into bad areas and befriended castoffs and whores.
    He fed the masses.
    He comforted the masses.
    He confronted the moneychangers and those in charge of the temple.
    If he were alive today, they would probably call him a communist leftist.

    Those Republicans who are concerned with oil wealth and riches should read this.

    Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter the kingdom of heavan.
    And again I say unto you that, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.
    Matthew Chap 19 Verse 23, 24.

    When I think about the right wing Christians who support Bush and the wars, I think of this verse

    Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits.
    Matthew Chap.7 Verse 15

    Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. Napoleon Bonaparte

    by daimon on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:56:46 AM PDT

  •  This doesn't even have to be religious. (4.00)
    We should be using Jesus as a political example of an anti-establishment liberal who supported the poor, the sick, and victims of discrimination.

    "Oh, some people worship him, too? How about that!"

    Those who cannot remember the future are condemned to repeat it.

    by Abou Ben Adhem on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:09:51 AM PDT

  •  Which of the 'Beatitudes' was about hate? (none)
    Refresh my memory please.  "Blessed are the haters for they ..."/  

    Is HATE Christian value?

    Just some billboard ideas.

    The last phrase of the Pledge of Allegiance is *with liberty and justice for all."  When did they start cutting people out of all?

  •  How much does it cost? (none)
    How much does a billboard cost (I know it does depend on placement) and anyone want to take up a collection to put some of these in Virginia - I'll donate.  Not the NoVa area but downstate, near Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson country, same places where you can drive down the highway and see the crosses on the sides of the roads.


    Organizing my thoughts about how to win from 2005 forward -

    by FredFred on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:23:08 AM PDT

  •  flags and religion (3.00)
    I wonder if this quote was the actual quote or whether it was spliced:

    "The whole thing behind it is to counteract the Christian right and their so-called monopoly on religion," Engels said. "They have been able to get out there and convince people that the flag wraps better around them than it does us, and that is not true."

    The billboard is about religion.  It isn't about a flag.  Now some people would like to claim that the flag (presumably the American flag) represents Christianity and that patriotism and Christianity are inexorably linked, but they're not.  And Democrats shouldn't be buying into that and using that language.  It's a good billboard idea, but it's not about patriotism.

    .-. . ..-. . .-. / - --- / - .... . / --- .-. .. --. .. -. .- .-.. / -.. --- - ... / .- -. -.. / -.. .- ... .... . ...

    by delphis on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:33:53 AM PDT

  •  I just can't get excited about it (none)
    I don't like the Jesusization of politics. It cheapens both Jesus and politics.

    I would much rather see billboards calling the Republicans on their false piety. Something like:

    Jesus cared about poor people...
    the Republican Party does not.

    Democrats Make America Stronger

    White text on green, only because Wellstone was my Senator.

    Maybe a whole series of "Democrats Make America Stronger" billboards could pop up, each with a short aphorism popping the bubbles.

    Bush wants to dismantle Social Security,
    we want to save it.

    Democrats Make America Stronger

    Bush wants a "clear skies initiative",
    we want clear skies.

    Democrats Make America Stronger

    •  Wellstone (none)
      Well, I used to work for Wellstone and as I could be wrong, I doubt he would have invoked Jesus in anything - considering that he was Jewish and rarely (if ever) blurred the line between religion and politics.  

      He was also too smart to ever have had anything to do with such a sorry attempt to put a band-aid on the real problems the Democratic Party has in communicating with Red States, rural America, and among church-going voters.

      With that said.. Green with white would be quite offensive.

      •  I was not very clear (none)
        I certainly did not intend to attach these messages to Wellstone. Sorry for implying that.

        I liked the use of green in the original SD billboard. But as others metioned black on green sucks. What I should have said was that Wellstone used white text on green because it provides much better legibility. (Or I assume that's why he used white.)

  •  What exactly (none)
    does something like this cost?

    I'm an atheist, but I certainly like to see the left not giving ground on our values, whether we get them from religion or not.

    •  Markets vary . (none)
      The same billboard in New York would cost much more of course . I believe in Sioux Falls the costs are about $ 1500.00 a month but it also varies by location and commitment .

      Billboards are great at creating buzz and visibility .

      This billboard has created both . It is amazing what reactions the word "Jesus " provokes . A purely political message wouldn't receive nearly as much .

  •  Good Take on Jim Wallis' (none)
    First promotion:


    Wish the Thug Party would remember that.

    Get rid of anything the Democratic Leadership Council. Visit the weblog:

    by The Truth on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:39:33 AM PDT

  •  Jesus v Christianity (4.00)
    FWIW I'm an atheist.  However I do believe in an historical Jesus who was a great teacher and a great liberal.  I see this billboard as praising liberal values, not Christian values.  Never forget that Jesus was a Jew, not a "Christian".

    Oh George, not the livestock!

    by espresso on Thu May 12, 2005 at 11:40:58 AM PDT

    •  Yes (none)
      Far too many forget Jesus was a Jew. His followers  were Jewish. In later decades, his followers were Christians. I love the way my Episocopal Priest refers to Judaism: the faith of our Lord.

      We choose hope over despair; possibilities over problems, optimism over cynicism.-John Edwards

      by wishingwell on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:24:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hat's Off! (none)
    Congrats on a great message!

    Spread it far and wide!

  •  Terrible! (none)
    When democrats finally wrap their chain around Jesus to join every other political faction that has some kind of bond with the poor Son of God, they commit a copyediting sin: a bad break!

    it SHOULD read

    Jesus cares
    for the poor;
    so do we

  •  Judging by the state of things, (3.50)
    Maybe the billboard should say:

    Jesus cared for the poor.
    No one else really does, in the sense that if just a small percent of the populace did care about the poor, enough to feed and clothe them, find them jobs, find them healthcare (mental or physical), give them shelter ...
    OTHERWISE, there wouldn't be any friggin' poor!
    You deserve a break today.

  •  EEeeeyaaaahhhh! (none)
    Forgive the mistake. I lost my train of thought.
  •  total shit. (3.50)
    It should just say democrats love poor people.  Or mabey include more godly figures from some other religions as well.  We are not going to win the Jesus game so we shouldnt engage.  We should throw in back in their face by actions:  not words.

    This is so the writing on the wall (almost literally) about where this country is headed.  They have made us side on jesus to.

    Would jesus have abortions legal?  No.

    if you want to start talking the talk (and not be like the jack ass republicans that pick and choose when religion applies) than you may have to look at some more of your views.

    Would jesus eat animals raised in cages?  Would jesus live in a large house while people went hungry?  Would jesus have nice cloths while other had no shelter?  Would jesus go on vacation while people died of starvation?  Are the democrats going to be like jesus and sell of all possesions that are not necessary?

    You should love poor people because your human.  Because you know that you are a product of your circumstances (for the most part) just like many people are victims of what they were born into.  I love poor people because they are people... and many times the nicest of them all.  I dont believe in the christian religion though.  What are the dems telling me?

    "Global deaths due to hunger in one year= 8,760,000"

    by Sausalito on Thu May 12, 2005 at 12:31:34 PM PDT

  •  I love the Grassroots Democrats (none)
    I wish we had this in our state.   I love the tagline: "Proud Democrats: The Party of Equality, Opportunity, and Responsibility"
  •  Some additional information on the campaign (3.87)
    I am a board member for Grassroot Democrats South Dakota.  I appreciate all the comments and the Daily Kos posting the billboard.

    First off, Grassroot Democrats South Dakota is NOT affiliated with the state Democratic Party.

    The billboards cost approximately $1000/month.

    We had a fundraising campaign and took in a number of small donations.  

    We kicked around a number of ideas then winnowed them down to the ones we thought were the best and most succinct.

    We are tryihg to appeal to all South Dakotans, inluding moderate Republicans and independents.

    We understand the ads are not for everyone, but we beleive the "Jesus" billboard speaks to progressive Christians, who we think make up a large voter bloc in South Dakota.

    We would like to put up more ads.  With your small contributions, we can do so.  Please visit if you want to learn more about us and or donate to the campaign or the organization.

    Thanks again to all the comments, positive and negative.

    Best regards,

    Todd D. Epp
    Board member
    Grassroot Democrats South Dakota

  •  Turning the Farm Belt Blue (3.50)
    This is the kind of counterattack I like to see.

    As screaming Southern demagogues cement their stranglehold on the Republican Party, I see golden opportunities to bring the less vehement rural midwest deeper into our fold.

    I say "deeper" because, for all the wimpy handwringing about the "red" farmbelt, it's been a pretty moderate breeding ground for Democrats compared to the Bible Belt.  

    The Dakotas' Congressional Delegation was 6 for 6 Democratic until Daschle's narrow loss last year, and the safety of incumbents like Pomeroy and Conrad ought to make you think twice before giving the prairie away to the GOP for free.  

    Nebraska has elected one Republican Senator--a moderate at that--since the Carter Administration.  

    Kansas and Indiana, the most Republican of the farm states, elect Democratic Governors as often as not.  

    The rest of the midwest is purple at worst and can be very Democrat-friendly in urban areas and regions that border the Great Lakes or the Mississippi river.

    I say go for a Solid North. Learn from Montana and bring the lesson east.  Run ads morphing DeWine into Taft, Talent into Blunt and both of them into Tom DeLay.

    And pass it on: Jesus was a Liberal.

    Well done, Grassroots Dems--we'll have you to thank for next year's perfect storm.

    "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

    by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:16:47 PM PDT

  •  Good to see the beginning of this (none)
    The first real on the ground action for framing the debate for progressive values.  Looks like SD Dems have been reading their Lakoff.  Or the "God's Politics" fellow who I haven't read and who's name I've blanked out.  There any good races to watch from this red state to see how it works?  This is truly excellent.

    "When I was a boy I was told anybody could become President, now I'm beginning to believe it"-Clarence Darrow

    by cwech on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:18:04 PM PDT

  •  Jesus cared for everyone.... (none)

     In fact Jesus said the poor you will always have with you.

     I understand what this message is trying to do,but you are opening up the door for charges of class warfare.

     It would have been better to say Jesus cared for everyone so do we.

     Remember those greedy rich overly religous butt heads who conspired to put Christ on the cross(the pharisees,not the jews as a people or the romans,jews made up the majority of those who stood by him)he said father forgive them they know not what they do.

     He cared for these rich butt heads who pressured Pilate into murdering him.

     I like the thought I just see where it can be twisted.


    •  The Class War Was Declared (none)
      Long ago by the Republican Party. And they are waging it still. With a high casualty rate. To not fight it is absurd. Don't take it personally.
    •  Umm... (none)
      IIRC, he said they'll always be with us. He didn't continue on to say "...SO FUCK THEM".

      If anything, the implied message is that we'll always have to take care of the poor, they'll never just "rise up by their bootstraps" and cease to be poor by some magick Adam Smith/Horatio Alger miracle. Indeed, they will always be with us... and another message that's even more pertinent here in the USA: and you too could become one of them, at any time, for any reason.

      There's a weird psychosis in the middle class of this country, where people expect that they'll eventually be millionaires and so reject taxes on millionaires, but they never expect that they'll be poor, and so reject programs for the poor!

      But the reality is that we have very little social safety net here (compared to, say, EU, or even Canada), and it is very, very easy to fall between the cracks. Just get behind on house payments, get sick without medical insurance (or have a parent or child do so), have your whole industry outsourced to India or China, have your car repo'ed (and no public transportation available to get to work!) and you soon will be among the poor, and stay there until you die.

      Economic survival is very fragile in the winner-take-all society. Therfore for the grace of whatever gods you choose, go you. So... care for the poor: you could be one too.

      •  it does not matter... (none)
        who started the class warfare.

         The neocons have been extremely successful in protraying liberals as the ones protraying it.

         I know that this message is only saying love and take care of the poor,but the GOP might be able to twist this and say it is saying hate the rich.

         I would not put it past them.

  •  So the idea is... (none)
    ... to out-Jesus the Jesus freaks? Is that a good idea?
    •  Yup. (none)
      It's a good idea to remind nice people who vote that Christianity is for Liberals.

      Next question.

      "Hit a man with a fish, and he'll have a headache for a day. Teach him to hit himself with a fish, and he'll have headaches all his life!"--Karl Rove

      by AdmiralNaismith on Thu May 12, 2005 at 01:54:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The trick... (none) taking regular "nice people" and turning them into the fabled "nice people who vote".

        I suspect many of those regular "nice people" would lean a bit to the left...just gotta get 'em to say so. :)

      •  If you need to remind people... (none)
        .. that Christianity (in principle) is for liberals, those people might not get it in the first place. The Jesus that Bush and all the other people of the extreme religious right are speaking of bears no resemblance to the Jesus from the Bible - and trying to cater to those people is like playing with fire.
    •  I find the term Jesus Freak... (none)

        to be intolerant and offensive.It is no better than calling a jew a kyke.

       Becuase I believe in a way I do not I am a freak.

       You know tolerance goes two ways.

       Or is it we "Jesus Freaks" have to be tolerant,but it is A-okay for the left to smear us.

       Jesus Freak is a slur.It should not be tolertated anymore than kyke,raghead,nigger or wetback.

  •  Very Weak ad, sorry, my opinion (none)
    Real poor people do not want to be called "poor".
  •  Religion v. religion (none)
    Allow me to be the black fly in your Chardonnay:

    This is a dangerous equation--mixing politics with religion, whether from the left or from the right.
    Political discussions become theological arguments--and one need look no further than Europe's own bloodstained history of religious persecution (in which religion was mixed with politics, inextricably) to see the danger in this.

    There's no question that Jesus had compassion for the poor--even a cursory reading of any of the four gospels of the New Testament will reveal that.

    I don't see how folks can have a rational discussion of social benefits and costs--for example, the social cost of poverty far outweighs the funds required to alleviate it--if the argument is "my view of religion is right and yours is wrong".

    What about--instead of letting the far-right set the terms of the debate, the left changes the terms of debate?  For example:  "We refuse to drag Jesus, God, or the Almighty in any form into a discussion of politics."

    Does that mean that politics should be stripped clean of any ethical basis?  No, it does not.  How about the ethical principle of avoiding suffering because simply because pain is bad--and should be alleviated if possible?  Hunger, homelessness, and untreated illnesses cause unnecessary suffering that could be easily ended through social programmes.  This is self-evident and requires no resort to "my religion is correct and yours is not" arguments.

    I find this trend in American politics altogether alarming, and you encourage it at your peril.  

    There are three kinds of people: Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see.

    by Shadowthief on Thu May 12, 2005 at 02:25:04 PM PDT

    •  first, we have to (none)
      second, we can win
      third we will win

      (1 Too many americans have no problem with using God in a political discussion, and if we dont mention God, we allow those voters to think that we have no morals. They (and I) get most moral and ethical understanding from religion, and conclude that those without faith or who do not discuss faith have no moral basis.
      2 Christianity is liberal.
      3 We haven't tried this tack in the US, unless you count the populists of the end of the 19th century. It has worked in motivating people for millenia, and we have to try.)

      •  I'm not convinced (none)
        You don't address the inherent dangers of mixing politics with religion.

        My own points:

        First, no one has proven that the "holier than thou" arguments work at convincing anybody except the far right-wing's base--and they are not going to be swayed over to the other side by "Jesus was a liberal" arguments.

        Second, the focus on "winning" is not quite right--what, exactly, are you planning on winning?  A theocracy, in which the President is also Christian Preacher in Chief?  That's not any kind of country I'd want to live in.

        Third, the fact that "many Americans have no problem with using God in a political discussion" is no answer--if the majority were in favour of lighting cats on fire, would that also be admirable?  You are supposed to be providing leadership, not following the mob.

        I rest my case.

        There are three kinds of people: Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see.

        by Shadowthief on Thu May 12, 2005 at 05:06:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  This IS alarming and has taken me by surprise (none)
      "I find this trend in American politics altogether alarming, and you encourage it at your peril."

      I signed with the Democrat party after twenty one years as a registered Independent before this last election.  It is precisely this level of politicking that kept me from doing it for those years.  It would have been much better if that billboard said "Jesus' name does not belong in politics."  I'm just shaking my head in disbelief that this is happening.  I'm personally continuously offended at the claiming of Jesus' approval, alliance or whatever by any political group, I hope this is a short-lived effort after some more thinking prevails.  It is much better to point out over and over that no party should be invoking God's name to further themselves in the United States of America.    

      •  I'm afraid it's too late (none)
        The far-right wing started this, and the other side has unwisely decided to reply in kind.

        What we now have in America are two Parties of God, each claiming the moral authority of the Saviour of humanity to support their political agenda.

        "Jesus wants you to pass this tax measure!"  

        "Jesus wants you to pass this highway bill!"

        How to answer the Republicans without resorting to the sort of language employed in this billboard?  The way Franklin Roosevelt did, by appealing to traditional American decency and values:

        In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.

        The first is freedom of speech and expression -- everywhere in the world.

        The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way -- everywhere in the world.

        The third is freedom from want -- which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants -- everywhere in the world.

        The fourth is freedom from fear -- which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor-- anywhere in the world.

        That is no vision of a distant millennium. It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation. That kind of world is the very antithesis of the so-called new order of tyranny which the dictators seek to create with the crash of a bomb.

        To that new order we oppose the greater conception -- the moral order. A good society is able to face schemes of world domination and foreign revolutions alike without fear.

        Since the beginning of our American history, we have been engaged in change -- in a perpetual peaceful revolution -- a revolution which goes on steadily, quietly adjusting itself to changing conditions -- without the concentration camp or the quick-lime in the ditch. The world order which we seek is the cooperation of free countries, working together in a friendly, civilized society.

        This nation has placed its destiny in the hands and heads and hearts of its millions of free men and women; and its faith in freedom under the guidance of God. Freedom means the supremacy of human rights everywhere. Our support goes to those who struggle to gain those rights or keep them. Our strength is our unity of purpose.

        To that high concept there can be no end save victory.

        From Congressional Record, 1941, Vol. 87, Pt. I

        Here, Roosevelt has invoked the Almighty, but in a general way--not assuming that God supports any particular political programme, but rather supports freedom of choice and human rights.

        There are three kinds of people: Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see.

        by Shadowthief on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:20:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  How can you not mix... (none)
      politics and religion.

       Are you supposed to ball up your religous and spiritual beliefs and keep them seperate from your political beliefs.

       I heard somone say politicians should act on spiritual or religous beliefs.

       What good are beliefs that are not acted on.I believe thou shall not kill.That is why I am against the death penalty.

       The only religous or spritual belied that should never be brought into politics is everyone else should be forced to believe and live as you.That is why the neocons are so dangerous.  

  •  Branding: Democrats, your brother's keeper (none)
    Repubs: corporate criminal's keepers...

    "in the United States, a program that deals only with the poor will end up being a poor program. ... " - Wilbur Cohen

    by decitect on Thu May 12, 2005 at 02:29:08 PM PDT

  •  Good Job (none)
    I for one would like to give my thanks for those at the grassroots who are doing something. I was very sad to see some of the comments posted here. Here is a group of people without much money who have pulled together to try and make a difference. They aren't political insiders.  

    If you don't like the ad then don't send them money. If you have suggestions then email the group. Bashing like minded folks who are trying, is rude. How many of the critics here have gotten off their fat asses to do something productive.

  •  There's no law that says you can't talk about... (none)
    Jesus's example. But it's not enough to say that democrats care about the poor like Jesus did. Why should anyone take our word for it? If you are actually doing the work, you are usually too busy to say you are doing the work.  
  •  "Satan Hates the Poor, and So Do We" (none)
    ...Republicans make America Weaker."

    Now wouldn't it be a blast to put that up as a sign somewhere?   ;)  

    •  No it would be awfulo. (none)
      Satan hates everyone!!!!!

       And even when I was a diehard GOP supporter I did hate the poor.I thought giving them handouts like welfare although well intentioned made them weaker by making them dependent.I did not hate them,most GOp supporters don't.

       That is a hateful as a neocon group saying something like liberals hate america,real americans should hate them.

       It fans hatred and anger.

  •  Notice it's not ClearChannel! (none)
    The billboard is owned and rented by AMAR Corporation, not ClearChannel. That's why this message is allowed to be seen.

    I'm amazed that grassrootsdems found a billboard in the USA that is not owned by ClearChannel! That evil corporation holds a near-monopoly on outdoor advertising in this country, and they habitually refuse these kinds of progressive billboards because they're "controversial"-- even though they put up even more controversial right-wing filth all the time (cf. ABC putting the horrific Dobson ads on SuperNanny, but refusing UCC's ads).

    I think it will be essential to create a progressive media empire, and give ClearChannel some competition. We need to start buying up (or putting up) billboards and making a profit selling space on them to evil corporations, then use our clout to accept advertising from United Church of Christ, grassrootsdems, AAR, and who knows who else might want to put up billboards.

    And maybe even refuse "controversial" billboards like the "DEAR LEADER" one in Florida, or advertising for Limbaugh, Dobson, Savage, et al.

    •  Banning Con ads (none)
      Qoute:And maybe even refuse "controversial" billboards like the "DEAR LEADER" one in Florida, or advertising for Limbaugh, Dobson, Savage, et al.:End Qoute

       Only if you want to help the neocons finish opening that pandora's box called censorship.

  •  "Jesus" ad was controversial (4.00)
    The "Jesus" board was controversial within our own group, Grassroot Democrats South Dakota.  However, there was a strong feeling, even among the more secular like me, that we had to do SOMETHING to counter the Republcans's usurpation of God and Jesus and religion and values, particularly here in SD, with very strong Lutheran and Catholic Churches.  So, I think the ad works well here, it may not work as well in your locale.

    This campaign was conducted with very little money by some very determined people.  It is easy to bitch and moan, which we Democrats are great at; it is harder to do something, and do something positive.  We were hit hard in SD with the loss of Daschle.  It is up to the Democrats like me and my colleagues to pick up the banner and move on and fight the fights.

    Thanks again for the comments.  There are some valid criticisms and some good ideas that we hope to use in the future.

    Todd Epp
    Board member
    Grassroot Democrats South Dakota

  •  Now (none)
    wouldn't it be nice if the elected SD Dems Herseth and Johnson actually did care for the poor instead of voting for the bankruptcy travesty?

    Republicans delenda est

    by sh59 on Thu May 12, 2005 at 03:41:27 PM PDT

  •  THIS IS GREAT (none)
    I am trying to figure out how we ca raise the money to post this billboard at  our county seat at bot ends
  •  this kind of nitpicking about irrelevancies (4.00)
    is the reason we lose elections.

    BradtheDad and DeminPA are on the right track, IMHO.

    When when when are we going to learn that:

    • Message comes first.  First, last and only.

    • This ad is not meant to appeal to us.

    • The message of this billboard is clear to the audience it is trying to reach.

    • style manual guidelines with respect to capitalization, line breaks, comma splices, font selection, background colors, etc. etc. etc. do not matter one whit to the target demographic for this billboard.

    • This sign is effective at the one thing it is designed to do:  reminding (or telling for the first time) these redvoter "Christians" that Dem policies are closer to the gospel imperative than Rpug policies.  That's all it needs to do, and it accomplishes that purpose just fine.

    Please please please o please we must try to get this through our collective heads--these people voted in huge numbers for a man who can't pronounce nuclear.  this is one of many indicators that demonstrate they have a different frame of reference than we do.  if we want to reach them, if we want more of them to vote with us, we will have to let go of our precious frames of reference and start to connect with what aspects of message get through to them and which ones they don't care about.  Gore and Kerry were excellent at all kinds of aspects of message that this demographic finds irrelevant.  And they were advised by people who are obsessed with all kinds of aspects of message that this demographic finds irrelevant.  As a result our candidates never made a connection.  As a result we got many fewer of these votes than we should have.

    Can we all please get on the post-modern bandwagon together?  Can we stop insisting that our way of talking, capitalizing, punctuating, and graphic designing is the One Right Truth?  Can we agree to hold simultaneous realities in our minds: that grammar and punctuation and style are important to some people and irrelevant to others?

    Can we please set the nitpicking instinct aside for just a few months in exchange for getting our country back?

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Thu May 12, 2005 at 04:38:46 PM PDT

    •  What the F..... (none)

      Qoute:style manual guidelines with respect to capitalization, line breaks, comma splices, font selection, background colors, etc. etc. etc. do not matter one whit to the target demographic for this billboard.:End Qoute

       What is this supposed to mean?

      •  it means (none)
        the vast majority of the people who see this billboard, and correctly take from it the Dem-friendly message we are trying to send, will not notice or care about the "errors" with respect to capitalization, line breaks, comma splices, font selection, and background colors that are being nitpicked to death on this thread.

        It's hard for us to imagine, but most people do not critique the advertising they see in the same way we do.  They just don't.  They absorb a basic message, if the advertiser did the job well.

        Our friends in SD did the job well.  The billboard works.  It sends the message it is meant to send.  The fact that it's not perfect from a style manual perspective is irrelevant.

        That's what it means.

        Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D.

        by TrueBlueMajority on Fri May 13, 2005 at 07:27:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The right cares about the poor too... (none)
    but only on an individual basis.  They are all for compassion and helping the poor, as long as nobody makes them do it (by paying taxes).

    The liberal view of the Christian commitment to the poor includes the idea that society as a whole is responsible for the fate of the less well off.  Evidently this doesn't sit well with the right.

    The problem with the right's approach is that it is demonstrable that if left to a purely volunteer basis, not enough money can be raised or resources mobilized to address the scale of problems that actually exist.

    The right has a philosophical objection to the whole idea that society as a whole can compel individual sacrifice on behalf of the less well off, whether this is done by classic "socialist" redistribution schemes or any other scheme that involves using public resources to create opportunity.

    As usual, any concept of the common good is rejected out of hand as being the work of pinkos and commies.  

    How did we get stuck with such a world of morons?

  •  Silly me... (none)
    I thought the sign meant that Democrats cared for the poor. I like the message that it sends to the religious-right, but just as with messages from the religious-right, I wish the words actually meant something.

    A Conservative Government is an organized hypocrisy. --Benjamin Disraeli

    Democrats -- Progress for the Working Class

    by rogun on Thu May 12, 2005 at 05:21:24 PM PDT

  •  YES. Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes! (none)
    WAY-TA-GO South Dakota Democrats!!!

    "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." - John F. Kennedy

    by Dean Nut on Thu May 12, 2005 at 05:39:39 PM PDT

  •  Please, oh please (none)
    stop putting Jesus' name on political billboards.  I can't believe this is happening in the Democratic party too.  This is no way to work against blasphemy.  Total turn-off.
  •  oil and water (none)
    Dems and religion are like oil and water , never meant to and will never mix .
  •  Nice (4.00)
    ...but please convert from hillbilly English to standard English.

           Jesus cares for the poor.
           So do we.

    I've seen numerous comments here from people who seem to feel that it would either incredibly difficult to use standard English, or that by not having multiple grammatical mistakes, any statement will come across as elitist in a way that will push people away.  

    Nonsense.  If people with poor English skills notice anything at all, it will be only that the statement now communicates its message more clearly than it did before.  And for those people with an education, it will make a big difference by also making the message appear more credible.

  •  Look, I did something! (4.00)
    Good LORD, what a bunch of bickering Democrats.

    Someone should get all the English teachers fighting over grammar to speak to a linguist and learn the difference between prescriptive and descriptive grammar. Then you won't care so much about something so little.  Think of it this way...if it weren't for the grammar error, you would have already forgotten you ever saw that billboard, but it seems to have stuck in a lot of folks' minds, right?

    So, I made a bumpersticker based on their billboard and put it on my cafepress site in case anybody is interested, in South Dakota or elsewhere.  I made a few changes that make sense because of the elongated shape of bumperstickers, but largely made it resemble the billboard.

    Take a look, it's at

    I left off the SD Dems website because I didn't get their permission to copy their sticker, and some of my other stickers are a little...less polite, so I don't want them falsely associated unless they want to be, if that makes sense.

    I'll send an email over to them and let them know.

    In the interests of full-disclosure, I mark stickers up fifty cents, but at least it's a way to let this group get their slogan on a few cars without having to print up stickers in bulk.

    I drove across SD in the summertime, it's fucking hot...when I think of that and the green they used, it's a positive association because of the 'cool' color, I don't give a damn what the ad guys and designers say, there are enough hot-colored signs around already.

    If you want to check out the home for my sticker site, it's at

    Please no comments about the design, it's a work in progress.  Yes this is a plug for my site, but I also got sick of reading all the criticism of these grassroots folks efforts to get something done in a red state.  They actually DID good for them.  Now I have too...

    /little rant : Making the truth stick, one car at a time.

    by W Milkis on Thu May 12, 2005 at 09:43:25 PM PDT

  •  eh (none)
    I am a christian and a liberal and this just rubs me the wrong way.

    I understand the sentiment, but I don't really think politicians should be comparing themselves with Jesus.

  •  Poor Jesus, poor God (none)
    Dragged into a political squabble between Republicans and Democrats.

    I'm sure that Jesus of Nazareth would be quite bewildered by the invocation of his name, his reputation, to support this political party or that one.

    Actually, if you wish to invoke religion, why not this one:

                Republicans Are Tools of Satan
                      Support the Democrats

    The secular, Enlightenment heritage of America is the envy of many nations of the world.  Why are Americans so damned eager to dispose of this marvellous part of their culture?  

    (And by the by--I don't give a toss about the appearance of the billboard.)

    There are three kinds of people: Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see.

    by Shadowthief on Thu May 12, 2005 at 10:28:23 PM PDT

  •  Speaking as a voodoo fetishist... (none)
    ...who worships a small wooden carving of a leopard which I carry around in my pocket, I like this billboard.

    If I were to nitpick, I would just drop the "so do we" part. "Jesus Cares for the Poor," then Democrats Make America Stronger. Everybody knows what's being said, and I think if you ran the numbers at least 60% would say Democrats are better at helping the poor.

  •  They're on to something (none)
    Simplicity of the message is what makes it work. Yes life and politics are far more complex than this message, but the Republicans have been the kings of oversimplifying - thus the kings of bumper sticker logic.
    It really is time to use simple messages that 'bottom line' what democrats do. But this really does not have to be exclusivley religious.
    Maybe starting to show what the single issue voters are voting 'yes' to would be good also. This block of voters are hard to sway with complex messages - I see this every day. It is so frustrating.
  •  short an simple (none)
    about abortion "If men got pregnant abortion would be A-OK. How about "Hey JohnyReb without birth controll youall has to marry Betty Sue" hows this "The GOP religious right want to close your bars" "The GOP religious right wants to tax Beer an booze more" "Oh Billy BOB The GOP wants you to be a virgin till you MARRY her" "GOP religious right wants to bring back arranged marriages" "GOP religious right is going to ban cheerleading" there is so many more things that would hit the red neck bush lovers right in the gut when they wake up and see that the only "fun" thing they can do under the religious rights rule is to go to church on Sunday all hells going to break lose. About the bar closing I live in Springfield Mo. there was a great bar called Remingtons the churchs fought to keep it from openning but it opened anyway so after a few years the churchs got enough money and bought the bar an closed it now they use the building for church uses.So it's already happening
  •  How about this? (none)
    ... a bumper sticker that says:

      Does God Know
    She's Republican?

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