Mitt Romney came not to kill Big Bird, but to pimp him out. At a campaign stop at Homer's Deli in Iowa today, the GOP android told a crowd of mainly old people that PBS should start running commercials aimed at the pre-school set, who are too lazy to pay taxes. We just have to stop funding certain programs, he shrilled, even the ones we like. "Stop them! Close them! Turn them off!"
He went through some weird jerky up and down motions to counter his natural stiffness, like a lying Pinocchio trying to convince the audience he is an authentic real live boy. It was the Puppet vs the Muppet!
"You might say, I like the National Endowment for the Arts. I do! I like PBS. We subsidize PBS. Look, I'm going to stop that. I'm going to say that PBS is going to have to have advertisement. We're not going to kill Big Bird, but Big Bird is going to have advertisements, alright?"(But just so you know, he is going kill ObamaCare dead. On Day One! With no Congressional input and no ads and no borrowing money from China! Watch a blessedly shortened video clip of his hour-long harangue here. Notice the Deli employees snickering in the background. Notice he lied by omission by not revealing that the federal government funds less than 5% of public broadcasting!)
This idea of defunding Sesame Street, by the way, is as stale and old and Scroogey as the Republicans who first suggested it last century. The Capitol Steps satire group even composed a song about the GOP wanting to privatize PBS, and put it on their "Whole Newt World" album. "This Big Bird can make you rich/In the right market niche" goes one verse to the tune of "Bye Bye Black Bird." The song suggests beer and cigarettes as some lucrative products for Marxist freeloader Big Bird to shill to the two-to-five-year-old demographic. (audio clip here).
We all know, thanks to the fact that Gail Collins puts it in every one of her New York Times columns, that Mitt Romney is an animal abuser. He once strapped the family Irish Setter, Seamus, to the top of his station wagon for a vacation to Canada. (Yeah, he was enclosed in a crate with his very own windshield, but the pooch became violently ill en route). And now, it seems, Mitt doesn't care too much about the psyches of children, either. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics,
You can take the man out of Bain Capital, but you can't take Bain Capital out of the man.Research has shown that young children—younger than 8 years—are cognitively and psychologically defenseless against advertising. They do not understand the notion of intent to sell and frequently accept advertising claims at face value. In fact, in the late 1970s, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) held hearings, reviewed the existing research, and came to the conclusion that it was unfair and deceptive to advertise to children younger than 6 years.What kept the FTC from banning such ads was that it was thought to be impractical to implement such a ban. However, some Western countries have done exactly that: Sweden and Norway forbid all advertising directed at children younger than 12 years, Greece bans toy advertising until after 10 pm, and Denmark and Belgium severely restrict advertising aimed at children.