And You Thought Campaign Ads Were Bad Today
by J. Andrew Zalucky,
Not too long ago, I watched an old documentary about the Johnson Presidency. In reference to the 1964 campaign against Barry Goldwater, the documentary showed a certain campaign ad…one which was quickly pulled after its release:
In today’s moist and hyper-sensitive culture, people love to drone on about our “mean” and “scaremongering” political environment. Perhaps they’ve forgotten about the Cold War…
In actuality, LBJ had no reason to run an ad like this (or to escalate operations in Vietnam) in order to win. I think its safe to say that, in the backdrop of the JFK assassination and the Civil Rights movement, the Democrats would have swept to victory regardless. But, LBJ being the politician he was, felt the need to make his victory absolute. Perhaps it was that drive which made his own political destruction absolute as well.