Conservatives roll out new ads

In the Conservatives quest to gain impressions for their message in the news — paired complimentarily to the media’s quest to sell newspapers and television advertising — new election-style ads are out from the party.

The Conservatives are explaining themselves saying that while they are focused on governing, if Michael Ignatieff is going to loudly and shamelessly beat the election drum, they have no choice but to respond.

When partisans release YouTube videos, the media doesn’t particularly notice. When there’s a party tagline on YouTube videos, the media sits up and wonders if these ads are going fill the gaps between stories of fake news Stephen Colbert mentioning Canada’s name thus meriting mention on the real news (CTV only) and stories of a reporter retiring (CBC only). Yes, will television networks merely repeat the ads as earned media in their newscasts or will they see the party buy some paid media?

I suppose the question will be answered if there’s an actual election. For the most part, these YouTube vignettes are election-ready. We have the full slate: the positive ad, the varied attack ads vs Ignatieff and the region-targeted ads about Jack Layton that will run in BC, and in rural Ontario, Saskatchwan and Manitoba markets. In French, there’s the ad against Gilles Duceppe being too “Montreal” (another cosmopolitan in our midst?!) and one that delightfully uses the wisdom of Justin Trudeau against Ignatieff. Interestingly, we also see the theme of illegal (cladestine?) immigration come up in French where unbeknown to many, polls higher as an issue in Quebec.

The move is a wise one for the Conservatives. The earned media juice will be worth the squeeze, and if we end up in election mode in a matter of weeks, the ads are already in the can. Also benefiting the Tories, it further underscores Ignatieff’s stated desire for an election. Speaking with senior Liberals last week, I can confirm that staffers are eager to clear the air and want the same. Canadians tend to punish those who are unnecessarily reckless in wanting power.

If you want to get a sense of the message of the top two parties going into the next election, the rhetoric of late has helped this become clear. The Conservatives argue that they’ve put Canada on the right track economically but the work isn’t finished yet. Also, leadership is a quality they want to emphasize. Further to this, they describe Michael Ignatieff as a charlatan who is only in it for himself, who is wrong on the economy and taxes and who would recklessly threaten the country’s stability with a coalition with socialists and separatists. The Conservatives will emphasize the fact the economy is on the recovery but that it is a fragile one. They will put the positive elements of the recovery in the window while Liberals will amplify their message against spending on “fighter jets and prisons”. For the Liberals, their response has been overconfidently focus-tested in the media and on twitter (fake lakes anyone?) and they’ll argue that the Conservatives have misplaced spending priorities when according to the Grits, the government should be spending on big ticket domestic items like national daycare and national eldercare.

Is there an election in the air, or is Michael Ignatieff simply doing his best to try to pass the task of supporting the government on the budget to Jack Layton? At the very least, the Conservatives are doing their best to prevent Ignatieff from skating through this effort easily. If being bellicose on an election helps Ignatieff save face, the Tories are doing their best to suggest that a coming election (and the uncertain time up to one) is Michael Ignatieff’s fault.

UPDATE: The ad buy is real. This is not just a YouTube campaign. Track the #SawAnAd hashtag for details.

Here are the ads:

The positive one:

The coalition one:

The Ignatieff’s weak connection to Canada ad:

The Ignatieff’s strong connection to America ad:

The NDP specific ad:

The Liberals vs. Liberals ad:

The Bloc specific ad:

Comments

comments

  • http://twitter.com/brockm Mike Brock

    “Why would we risk changing course?”

    When the massive consumer debt crisis hits Canada, due to the Bank of Canada’s inflationary policies, which will compound Canada’s structural deficit, you’ll have an answer to that question.

  • http://canadiansense.blogspot.com/ Canadiansense

    I enjoyed rising to the challenge. I almost feel sorry for the opposition because they appear to be disconnected with the reality outside Ottawa.

    I am confident the negative ads will be dismissed again as ineffective from the MSM. It’s a pity the pundits have not realized we are not listening to them either.

  • Randy

    We need more ads highlighting what the PM has done for Canada. The MSM will not do it for us.

  • bert

    Yes,People like you will blame Mike Harris.At least we don’t lead the world in brown envelopes under the table anymore.

  • Liz J

    Don’t know about you Mike but I appreciate living in Canada during this recessionary time and having good management under the Harper team. We are so fortunate.

  • Tyrone Fife

    It’s perfect.
    We push through with what we want in the budget, the ads will pull Iffy down in the polls, and he will have no choice but to support the budget or get annihilated in an election.

  • Gabby in QC

    I looove the one with Trudeau Jr.

  • batb

    That Justin Trudeau parle bien le francais. And, regarding Ignatieff, he actually makes sense.

    Otherwise …

  • real conservative

    I believe that Layton will push us into the next election along with Gilles Duceppe. Liberals seem to be leaning a lot on old sagas for this election with a fresh cover to conceal the old stories. Will it work? Not likely, the public is too cynical now. Harper trying to paint Canada as an up and coming economic power that Liberals and Dippers would hold down, rings nice to me. (real conservative)

  • Beer and Popcorn

    There is nothing here that is not based 100% on fact.

    Ignatieff did say and do these things and Layton and Duceppe did also.

    They need to pay the price with voters – why sugar coat it?

    “Money for nothing” – Dire Straits

  • Gabby in QC

    On today’s Power & Politics segment “Firing Line” (with Monte Solberg, Steve McKinnon replacing WK, and Peggy Nash), they were discussing these new ads.

    Steve McKinnon repeated the time-worn canard that Stephen Harper signed a coalition agreement with Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe in 2005.

    When are Libs going to get it through their apparently very thick heads that a coalition means power- sharing with other parties, with members of two or more parties having seats at the cabinet table?

  • Cytotoxic

    When the consumer debt bubble explodes you might change your mind.

  • Cytotoxic

    You want ads that talk about massive bailouts for car companies/unions, massive spending sprees before and during the stimulus, and the importation of the US war on drugs, sex, and gambling. Knock yourself out!

  • http://twitter.com/brockm Mike Brock

    I blame Mike Harris? Really? I quite liked Mike Harris. He actually shrunk government.

  • YoungHaligonian

    The positive one had a christmas commercial feel to it, I think it’s the narrator’s voice.

  • YoungHaligonian

    The positive one had a christmas commercial feel to it, I think it’s the narrator’s voice.

  • Anonymous

    The Conservatives argue …
    - that they’ve put Canada on the right track economically…

    Thanks to policy already in place, Canada was on the right track to face the recession, and despite their original intent on banking deregulation, the CPC pulled back and did not knock the train off the tracks. So I’m grateful for that.

    - …but the work isn’t finished yet.

    True. The economy, especially around Toronto has picked up alot, and i am willing to give the CPC some credit for that. McGuinty also deserves some credit, especially for some visionary moves that have made Ontario a North American hotspot for alternative energy investment.

    But the recovery IS fragile. Throwing a $1.2B world party, buying overpriced US fighters and building prisons in the face of declining crime aren’t exactly models of fiscal prudence. I want to see temp entry-level jobs turned back into the middle-class careers they replaced. I want to see work done to create new technologies and opportunities in Canada. Selling oil and minerals is not enough to sustain us in the long run.

    - they describe Michael Ignatieff as a charlatan who … would recklessly threaten the country’s stability with a coalition with socialists and separatists.

    Ah the coalition boogeyman. Harper created this coalition… I guess he has the right to bring it out in public, even though it hasn’t had a pulse since 2008. Frankly it’s starting to smell, even to partisans. Just bury it and move on.

    “Socialists and separatistes” -glad to see that empty name-calling still has a place. For a “separatist” party, no-one’s reduced Quebec separatist sentiment more than the Bloc. Now if the right could just stop fanning western separatist sentiment, we could all move onto something else.

    – They will put the positive elements of the recovery in the window

    Well, everyone likes a pretty window. Make sure the new valance and drapes will cover Harper’s lackluster performance in foreign policy, and defunding of the military, especially around compensation to injured vets.

    The main thing making the CPC look “good” right now, is because the current Liberals look so bad. The Liberals of a decade ago would have had Harper exiled to Stornoway in a heartbeat.

  • Anonymous

    The Conservatives argue …
    - that they’ve put Canada on the right track economically…

    Thanks to policy already in place, Canada was on the right track to face the recession, and despite their original intent on banking deregulation, the CPC pulled back and did not knock the train off the tracks. So I’m grateful for that.

    - …but the work isn’t finished yet.

    True. The economy, especially around Toronto has picked up alot, and i am willing to give the CPC some credit for that. McGuinty also deserves some credit, especially for some visionary moves that have made Ontario a North American hotspot for alternative energy investment.

    But the recovery IS fragile. Throwing a $1.2B world party, buying overpriced US fighters and building prisons in the face of declining crime aren’t exactly models of fiscal prudence. I want to see temp entry-level jobs turned back into the middle-class careers they replaced. I want to see work done to create new technologies and opportunities in Canada. Selling oil and minerals is not enough to sustain us in the long run.

    - they describe Michael Ignatieff as a charlatan who … would recklessly threaten the country’s stability with a coalition with socialists and separatists.

    Ah the coalition boogeyman. Harper created this coalition… I guess he has the right to bring it out in public, even though it hasn’t had a pulse since 2008. Frankly it’s starting to smell, even to partisans. Just bury it and move on.

    “Socialists and separatistes” -glad to see that empty name-calling still has a place. For a “separatist” party, no-one’s reduced Quebec separatist sentiment more than the Bloc. Now if the right could just stop fanning western separatist sentiment, we could all move onto something else.

    – They will put the positive elements of the recovery in the window

    Well, everyone likes a pretty window. Make sure the new valance and drapes will cover Harper’s lackluster performance in foreign policy, and defunding of the military, especially around compensation to injured vets.

    The main thing making the CPC look “good” right now, is because the current Liberals look so bad. The Liberals of a decade ago would have had Harper exiled to Stornoway in a heartbeat.

  • http://canadiansense.blogspot.com/ Canadiansense

    As I have suggested in the past, I think that all Canadian energy policy influencers and decision-makers might wish to study and learn Spain’s renewable industry development history. It is one of great successes and equally great failures.

    Both Ontario and BC are making the mistake of barrelling ahead with FITs while resisting advice to introduce legally binding RESs. By comparison, Nova Scotia regulated an RES in 2007 and does not have an FIT. At the end of the first quarter of 2001 Nova Scotia will have in full operation 50% of the long-term renewable energy target for 2015 associated with Ontario’s first FIT contract round.

    http://windconcernsontario.wordpress.com/2011/01/18/aldyen-donnelly-an-in-depth-look-at-spain%E2%80%99s-disastrous-renewable-energy-policy/

  • Anonymous

    That’s a good article, notwithstanding the source website, who will grab at anything they can find to bolster what is essentially just elevated NIMBY for the majority of the member groups.

    I’m mostly in favour of sensible energy alternatives, including wind generation.

    Here are some reasons why even their detractors should like wind energy:
    – compared to nuclear, hydro, gas/coal plants, the construction, commitment and long-term effects are tiny. Pour a base, erect a windmill, run some wires, done! This means they are equally easy to upgrade… or remove. So, if a location proves to be economically inefficient or politically undesirable… it’s not hard to remove them. Try that with Darlington…
    – It’s still a developing technology (and industry). Wind generators will continue to get quieter, safer, more efficient, less intrusive. And authorities will continue to get better at finding acceptable and efficient locations.

    And the policies around them (eg FITs and RESs) are equally easy to change. Call your MP and MPP. I’m sure St Hudak will make some adjustments, should he ever take the throne in Ontario.

  • http://canadiansense.blogspot.com/ Canadiansense

    The Website collects stories from the GLOBE and many sources. Like a Borque, National Newswatch (it is not a single source)

    I am absolutely THRILLED you are trying to pass it off as NIMBY. Toronto has how many people and Giant Bird Choppers?
    The Green Energy Act removing or bypassing local government is a good for democracy? (Thank kenn2)
    I could list hundreds of ARTICLES showing Wind does NOT work without the PONZI scheme.

    When Dalton McGuinty embraced wind power four years ago, it seemed he couldn’t lose. Politically, his support for this infinitely renewable form of energy put the Ontario premier firmly on the side of the environmental angels. -Thomas Walkom Toronto Star article available on their site. (Feel free to bash TSTAR and Walkom)

    http://windconcernsontario.wordpress.com/2011/01/15/walkom-how-mcguinty%E2%80%99s-windmill-dreams-became-a-nightmare/

    On paper, the plan seemed a sure winner.

    But that was before Dr. Bob McMurtry.

    McMurtry is neither a crank nor a nutter. An orthopedic surgeon and former dean of medicine at London’s University of Western Ontario, he is part of the country’s medical and political establishment.

    Read the rest…

  • Anonymous

    I am absolutely THRILLED you are trying to pass it off as NIMBY. Toronto has how many people and Giant Bird Choppers?

    Even YOU have the brainpower to know that you don’t put them where the wind don’t blow. As a sailor, trust me, Toronto doesn’t qualify as windy (other than City Hall and Queens Park). Some offshore generators might cut it.

    On any health effects – I’m OK with studies and compromises. But remember that we have decades of experience from Europe to look at. You also have to keep in mind that these things are getting better every day, including the low-frequency problem.

    Issues around land use are political problems, not technical, and they will have a political solution.

    Wind generation politics will blow this way and that (as they should). The technology of wind generation is here to stay.

  • Anonymous

    I am absolutely THRILLED you are trying to pass it off as NIMBY. Toronto has how many people and Giant Bird Choppers?

    Even YOU have the brainpower to know that you don’t put them where the wind don’t blow. As a sailor, trust me, Toronto doesn’t qualify as windy (other than City Hall and Queens Park). Some offshore generators might cut it.

    On any health effects – I’m OK with studies and compromises. But remember that we have decades of experience from Europe to look at. You also have to keep in mind that these things are getting better every day, including the low-frequency problem.

    Issues around land use are political problems, not technical, and they will have a political solution.

    Wind generation politics will blow this way and that (as they should). The technology of wind generation is here to stay.

  • http://canadiansense.blogspot.com/ Canadiansense

    I imagine you were a sailor for a landlocked country.

    The Ontario Liberals solution won’t work. It will be a massive boondoggle and the voters may follow the NB example or correcting the political class.

    “Everybody’s in favour of green energy and everybody’s in favour of creative solutions, but wind turbines could end up being the biggest financial and corporate scam the province has witnessed since eHealth,” Kormos said, referring to the roughly $1 billion spent on consultants by the provincial eHealth organization.-Peter Kormos

    http://windconcernsontario.wordpress.com/2011/01/17/turbines-could-be-boondoggle-for-liberals-mpp/

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for running to the insults so soon, CD. Bye.

  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous