December 30, 2007

Fred's Final Sales Pitch
— Ace

17 minute vid, so buckle in.

Pretty good. Where are the other candidates' long-form pitches?

Posted by: Ace at 06:11 PM | Comments (29)
Post contains 23 words, total size 1 kb.

1 That shirt's the wrong shade of blue, the ties the wrong shade of red, his suit coat looks about two sizes too big and what a cheap, cheesy-looking backdrop!

It's such a third-rate looking production, I'm finding it hard to believe a first-tier candidate would be involved in it. He's supposed to be a big Hollywood movie star, and this is the best he can do? It makes him look broke and desperate.

Posted by: Nordbuster at December 30, 2007 06:17 PM (jYT9+)

2 Form over substance, Nordbuster?

Posted by: Laddy at December 30, 2007 06:21 PM (Q0Dnt)

3 Funny thing, Nordbuster - I was listening to his words, and paid no attention to the shades and textures and quality of meaningless props around him.

Because he's not about shades and textures and props. because they mean NOTHING.

His words made him presidential.

Posted by: Steamboat McGoo at December 30, 2007 06:27 PM (41Dd+)

4 Peter Robinson has posted a powerful comment on Fred Thompson's "closing argument".  It is titled "Thompson Makes His Move"   (NRO The Corner)

Robinson finishes with:

This is reminiscent of Reagan’s talk to the people of North Carolina in
1976.  Simple, straightforward, modest production values—just the
candidate in front of an American flag and an Iowa flag—but (to use the
word again) compelling.  Reagan’s 1976 talk enabled him to recover
after a string of primary defeats, winning in North Carolina, then
going on to come within a handful of delegates of wresting the
nomination from Ford.  Will Thompson’s talk move voters in Iowa?  Does
his campaign have the money to get it on the air?  Throughout the
state?  Or even in a few of the most important markets?  Beats me.  But
we have here a serious man, making a serious case—and doing so in the
context of a campaign that has otherwise descended into mere

Even at this late hour, I wouldn’t count Fred out.

those who don't know, Peter Robinson was a speechwriter for President
Ronald Reagan, and he was the principal author of  the 1987 "Tear Down
This Wall" address.

Posted by: mrp at December 30, 2007 06:27 PM (HjPtV)

5 Nordbuster,

I am guessing that minimalist setting was a deliberate choice. Perhaps it's supposed to demonstrate mid-west simplicity and such. Also, if you are doing a 17 minute speech, you are playing for the old school vote to begin with. This is reminiscent of when candidates bought big blocs of time and gave speeches like this. I think it's part of the image he's going for.

It's interesting that he's playing for Democrats and his ability to win their votes.  Cold be a smart ploy in a campaign where few have fallen in love and many are voting strategically and electability is a big issue.

The lamest part to me was his leadership pitch where he used the example of not doing the hand show at the last debate. I guess he knows it's red meat for the base but is that really his best leadership moment? Ugh, I hope not.

Posted by: DrewM. at December 30, 2007 06:31 PM (hlYel)

6 Maybe so, DrewM., but....

Everybody else just went along, eh?

Posted by: moviegique at December 30, 2007 06:42 PM (1y5Vr)

7 Though currently a Rudy supporter, I have to admit that the phrase President Thompson does have a certain ring to it.

+ Nicely crafted direct-to-the-voter type speech.
- Odd 2nd camera angle.
- Hopefully those assholes heard laughing it up in the background were promptly fired after the taping. Ditto for whoever was flushing the toilet.
+ Nice riff on Geo. Washington leaving office. I was thinking about that today after reading some dyspeptic leftist's post about the Founding Fathers and why we should ignore them entirely.
+ Drew, you're wrong about mentioning the hand thing. It made me smile. It works because candidates that don't have the instant recognizability like Rudy or Reagan need to have momentary events like that, however small, repeated to become familiar in the general voters mind.

Posted by: adamthemad at December 30, 2007 06:43 PM (xeR4z)

8 adamthemad,

How am I wrong? I said it was the lamest moment "to me". Are you saying it wasn't the lamest moment for me? If so, please tell me which moment I did find lamest then.

I acknowledged that people like it, I just don't find it persuasive in anyway.YMMV and apparently does..

Fred's a perfectly fine candidate and I could easily and will vote for him if he gets the nomination. I just don't see why people are so excited by him but that's not really important in the long run or even the short run.

Now, if he promises to nominate and fight to make The Mustache Sec State, I'd be manning the barricades for the guy.

Posted by: DrewM. at December 30, 2007 07:02 PM (hlYel)


I can't believe this guy isn't the front runner.


Posted by: Fred at December 30, 2007 07:05 PM (5dQxo)

10 Good stuff. I'm just skeptical that it's going to reach many of those undecided voters he talks about. Here's hoping, though.

Posted by: Andrew at December 30, 2007 07:18 PM (u5kpU)

11 wife just sat and listened through the whole thing (with me, natch: but - full disclosure - I'm already a Fred! guy). AND she asked me to stifle my - complementary - commentary. She wanted to hear this; she started paying close, close attention about 2 minutes in.

She doesn't care for politics (to put it mildly).

She decided to vote for Fred about 7/8th's of the way through.


...that was a pretty darn effective speech ...for listeners, at least. Especially for one neophyte listener in California.

...she didn't even mention the lack of haute couture Nord'. And my wife, she loves the clothes, dude.


Posted by: davis,br at December 30, 2007 07:20 PM (q4usA)


One of the things Fred! has going for him is the "documentary voice".  I have heard that same accent and speaking pattern over every War Letter voice-over for my entire life. Even if it was some guy from Maine fighting in the Pacific the letter always sounds like it. "My Dearest Annabelle, There are times in a man's life when he must decide which path to follow. With a weary heart I have...."


"That shirt's the wrong shade of blue, the ties the wrong shade of red, his suit coat looks about two sizes too big and what a cheap, cheesy-looking backdrop!"

Why are you worried about Fred! ? I didn't hear anything from him about you and your boyfriend having to move to Massachusetts to get married.





Posted by: mike at December 30, 2007 07:41 PM (/InkS)

13 Nord, get a life.

DaveM, it was lame to you because you do not grasp the concept. Nope, I will not play your little buttenhole game. What's no to understand?

Great Speech Fred.

Note please, Speech not Sound Byte.

Posted by: Old Dog at December 30, 2007 07:54 PM (CRC5/)


Even those Americans with a deficit attention span can enjoy 15 minutes of introduction to Fred for POTUS.

Following Fred's presentation, visit the senate website to search his extensive contributions towards conserving American values that others could not accomplish without his international/domestic expertise in law.

search fred thompson

enjoy thumbing through his many effective high notes as Senator for the American people from the great State of Tennessee

quit whining and contribute to his success for your own well being as a conservative American


Posted by: St. Paul Plunder at December 30, 2007 07:55 PM (bGDqs)

15 Out-FUCKING-standing.

One supposes that "nordbuster" is either a fashion designer or a fan of the silky one. No man around here gives a shit about the things he mentions. As laddy put it ... "form over function?", or as another once put it ... "symbolism over SUBSTANCE."

Posted by: Bruce at December 30, 2007 07:56 PM (2q+Ss)

DaveM, it was lame to you because you do not grasp the concept.

Old Dog,

I assume you were referring to me...

What is it with you people and your man crushes on various candidates? You can't stand the slightest bit of disagreement with your guy. Hell, it doesn't even have to be disagreement, it could simply be insufficient hero worship. And it's not just the Fredheads, a lot of Romney people are that way too.

Trust me, I get the concept...Fred was playing tough guy and you ate it up.  Congratulations.

I am not a Rudy partisan (I am not supporting anyone at the moment) but I'll tell you what, in 8 years as Mayor of NY he stood up to a lot tougher characters than a schoolmarmish debate host.

Fred supporters keep talking about how he's the only man of substance and I grant his positions are well thought out and yes, they are substantial but that one moment wasn't exactly Reagan at the Brandenburg Gate challenging Gorbachev to tear down that wall, was it?

Posted by: DrewM. at December 30, 2007 08:11 PM (hlYel)

17 Oh and Old Dog, I get why he did what he did in the debate and I applaud that. Candidates shouldn't do hand shows, it's unserious and doesn't help people understand where the candidates are coming from.

The part I didn't like in this speech is where he said that demonstrated his leadership abilities because the others followed suit. That's the part I found lame.  Surely, in his career Fred has demonstrated leadership in better ways than not raising his hand on the command of an idiot editor.

Posted by: DrewM. at December 30, 2007 08:38 PM (hlYel)

18 I think Drew's right.  It was a fine moment... just a fairly trivial one, and an odd one to still be harping on weeks later as if it were the equivalent of Tear Down This Wall, Mr. Gorbachev.

Mitt Romney had a great rejoinder to an annoying reporter who claimed to "represent the people" a few years back -- he said "No, actually, *I* represent the people, *you* represent the media" -- but if Romney were citing that as a major example of his leadership I would think it pretty lame.

Posted by: ace at December 30, 2007 08:44 PM (SXBHu)

19 Surely, in his career Fred has demonstrated leadership in better ways
than not raising his hand on the command of an idiot editor

I'm sure he has, but little things like that moment at the debate are what people tend to remember. And while it may not be comparable to the "tear down this wall" speech, it's certainly comparable to this and he was right to point it out.

Posted by: forged rite at December 30, 2007 08:47 PM (eij1W)


The hand thing beats the lame adjective string that shows up.


Cali-land stealing-tax hiking-theif, redneck-bible throwing-idiot

 Fred! did it and it will not impress anybody.

Posted by: mike at December 30, 2007 08:51 PM (/InkS)

21 I can't view it right now, still at work on the zombie pc, but about the hand raise, watch the video of that again, it's the other candidates reaction that is indicative of Fred's leadership and presence. He was the alpha dog in that room. Berlin wall? No. But it's small things like that that makes power. Knowing that you have a mental edge over your opponents. I've coached a lot of youth basketball/baseball. I knew when I had the other coach mentally beaten. Little things mean alot in diplomacy also. I will view the video in the morning. And Drew, it's not a man crush for me. I've known about Fred for a long time. I truly believe he is the best man now for this job. Lot of nutjobs on the world stage. Who do you want to face them down?

Posted by: Cliff M at December 30, 2007 10:07 PM (crMB6)

22 To me Rudy and McCain have the tough enoughs for the war v islamofascism, but I can't trust what they will do domestically. Maybe put Rudy in charge of cleaning out State dept./Intel sewer. Or Bolten. McCain is ego driven, panders to press, a bit erratic. Willing to forego conservative principles for good writeups in the NYT. Romney is still an enigma to me, by this time he should not be . Huckabee is corrupt I think. He and Ron Paul seem to have mysterious funding fountains. If Fred makes it great, if not, I will go with the nominee, but please for god's sake make it an honorable choice.

Posted by: Cliff M at December 30, 2007 10:27 PM (crMB6)

23 I listened to the video while web surfing, with occasional looks at the video.

I was impressed with the last video that was posted here about Christmas and the troops. So I had at least a positive expectation.

Remember, this video is supposed to be aimed at non-supporters to vote for him. If this is his 'final pitch', I think it failed because it was too long and there was nothing compelling Fred can point to.  What has Fred done? Highlighting being asked by Bush and Rice and the hand raising were all I got out of it. I don't even remember the Bush and Rice thing, so how crucial was his help?

A couple of negatives were:
1. When Fred brought up moveon.communist ad Petraeus/Betray'us  it reminded me that Guilliani actually did something at the time (the NYTimes counter ad).  I assume Fred did say something at the time, but what was it, it wasn't memorable?

2. It seemed to me that he is running because there isn't a traditional conservative candidate more than because he wants to be president.

3. I'm seeing the Law and Order 'credential' as more and more negative. The show has ALWAYS BEEN liberal. Recently seeing the episodes (with Fred) post-911 preaching against 'the illegal Iraq war', torture etc., is becoming nauseating. Yeah, those aren't his views, but he's been an enabler to liberal propaganda.

BTW:the hand raising incident was a shining moment for him. That incident should be weaved into ad. But by comparison, did Regan himself ever refer back to pay for the microphone thing in speeches? I really doubt it.

Posted by: liontooth at December 30, 2007 11:06 PM (6sayt)

24 How am I wrong?

Well, I did try to explain in the very next sentence that I wrote if you had bothered to read it. He needs to repeat something and that moment, how ever petty you find it, is something that not only resonated with viewers (massive, irrefutable proof = the weird Frank Luntz Fox Insta-polling group) but something that also shows his adeptness. He wasn't willing to go along to get along in a supposedly friendly forum.
You may acknowledge it and find it boring, fine. There's no accounting for taste, I suppose, but that bit works whether it chills your nipples or not.

Posted by: adamthemad at December 30, 2007 11:44 PM (xeR4z)


The part I didn't like in this speech is where he said that demonstrated his leadership abilities because the others followed suit. That's the part I found lame.  Surely, in his career Fred has demonstrated leadership in better ways than not raising his hand on the command of an idiot editor.

I think his point was that the other candidates couldn't even do that much.  Reagan probably didn't bring up the microphone bit after it happened, but then he probably didn't have a way of making it reflect directly on the other candidates the way Fred has for this.


Posted by: Qwinn at December 31, 2007 02:26 AM (/FDfc)

26 adamthemad,

Sorry the comments shit the bed so we couldn't continue this yesterday. If you are still around, thanks for proving my point.

I offered an impression and yet you and at least one other Fred supporter tell me I am wrong! My impression can't be wrong. I didn't state a fact.  But Fred supporters and supporters of other candidates can't accept any deviation from the party line and must attack the heretics.

Not only is it annoying, it's not likely to win any converts. Considering Fred's base is not all that big, I'd think you'd like to persuade rather than rant. See Cliff M's comments for this. We've had another discussion about Fred and he does a good job making the case for his guy. It may not have brought me over to the light, yet, but remember a hell of a lot more people read the entires and comments than actually comment.

Cliff M. sorry, I was speaking to a specific group there (the people who tell me my reactions and subjective thoughts are 'wrong'). As I noted above, you are a persuasive advocate for Fred. I wish more committed supporters would engage undecideds that way.'s is great fodder for the supporters, I said as much in my first comment. The problem is Fred's in 4th place, he needs to be doing more than shoring up the base.  And hey, maybe it will bring people into the fold, it just left me cold, that's all I ever said.

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