Daisy, Daisy, Give Me Your Terror Do


The GOP is blast-blogging a new ad intended to evoke the most powerful political ad of all time—the one that made Reason's November cover. "These Are the Stakes" rips off the final lines of Bill Moyers' 1964 "Daisy Ad," and couples them with imagery of terrorists doing scary things like… I think at one point a guy breaks a board over another guy. So let's say it portrays "terrorist training."

Of course the Republicans were going to use terrorism to beat Democrats over the head. The surprising thing is how many of the lessons of the Daisy ad "These Are the Stakes" ignores. The Daisy ad took voters' subconcious worries about Barry Goldwater and created a snapshot of the future, of sometime in 1965 or 1966, when President Goldwater's recklessness would lead to all-out nuclear war. "These Are the Stakes" uses footage and quotes from the last few years to paint a picture of terrorists beating down the (until we build that awesome border fence) metaphorical door to blow up Americans. But nothing indicates that a Democratic Congress is going to make the terrorists' job easier. It's just a Fox News promo with quieter editing. More evidence that Republicans inside D.C. spend too much time talking to one another; they've convinced themselves that everyone else is still clinging to the terror-smashing GOP for dear life.

NEXT: Watching the Kids

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  1. Hmmm, footage taken presumably during the Bush Administration somehow proves that the Democrats are soft on terror? Fascinating.

  2. Vote Republican or DIE!

    Well, if those are the only two choices…

  3. The three countries constituting Bush’s “Axis of Evil”– Iran, Iraq and North Korea– are all far deadlier today than when Bush coined that phrase. A new estimate shows that more than 600,000 Iraqi citizens may have been killed after the U.S.-led invasion. And…

    Oh, why bother going over all the reasons again? The GOP leadership won’t listen to anything except election results, so let’s all just appreciate (hope?) that they will, for once, listen.

  4. Money Statement that says it all:

    More evidence that Republicans inside D.C. spend too much time talking to one another.

  5. panurge,

    I’d argue that two of these three countries are deadlier specifically because Bush did call them out as the “Axis of Evil.”

    BTW, Bush didn’t coin the phrase. It was speechwriter David Frum (with a little help from his friends). Bush just read it, although his copy was spelled phonetically. In his version it was spelled “axes of Eve ill.” He thought it was a biblical reference.

  6. It’s not terrorist training. It’s Jackass.

  7. “Vote Republican or DIE!”

    As Jack Benny once said: “Let me think about this.”

  8. What does James C. Dobson think about the Rebugnacans stooping as low as that atheist, Bill Moyers?

  9. Vote Democrat or BIG OIL will take all the money and all the teachers will be fired.

  10. “Vote Democrat or BIG OIL will take all the money and all the teachers will be fired.”

    A TWOFER! I like it.

  11. Rev. Bill Moyers is an atheist?

  12. Those board-breaking videos are clearly not *training* videos, they’re obviously *recruiting* videos, saying “wow, look what we can do! don’t you want to be this tough?”

    It’s the low-budget jihadi equivalent of a commercial showing SEALs making a night landing, Rangers jumping out of a plane, or a Green Beret calling in an airstrike.

  13. Rev. Bill Moyers is an atheist?

    Well, he sure cozied up to that Joseph Campbell guy!

  14. “Daisy, Daisy, Give Me Your Terror Do”

    Riffing on an old English music-hall song! You guys are uncanny in your knowledge of pop culture.

  15. A little correction of history, here. The Daisy Spot was not produced by Bill Moyers. He was involved in the decision to air it. But it was made by Tony Schwartz.

  16. Holy focus group Congressman Foley!
    Isn’t this the same Goldwater/Johnson vintage little-girl-and-daisy-chain-letter that CEI recycled as “They Call It Pollution We Call It Life ” earlier this year ?

  17. The glut of campaign ads we see on TV today guarantees this individual ad will have little or no effect. In 1964, an ad like Johnson’s was striking because it was so unusual to see something so negative in a prime-time hour commercial break. Today, negative ads are so commonplace that viewers simply will shrug this off as another GOP attack.

    Which makes the GOP a victim of its own success; their attack methods are now so common, people have grown used to them and push them into the background. As this is a midterm, people are more interested in ads on local or statewide candidates anyway.

  18. “Daisy, Daisy, Give Me Your Terror Do”

    Riffing on an old English music-hall song!

    Mad Max,
    What the hell is an old English music-hall?

    “Give me your answer, do.
    I’m half crazy, all for the love of you.”

  19. “Republicans or death?”

    “I’ll have Republicans.”

    “I’m sorry, we’re all out of Republicans, we really didn’t expect such a rush.”

  20. It’s more like Republicans or Maumau. “The choice is… death BY Republicans!”

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