Tag Archive: World Economic Forum

“Campaigns End. Revolutions Endure.” — Bernie Sanders campaign motto on his website, “Our Revolution”

Bernie is genuine.

Bernie is a true believer.

Bernie’s “Movement” has momentum or in campaign parlance, The Big Mo.

Bernie is good to the last drop with nearly 100 percent name recognition.

Just as the Republican establishment was too late in 2015/2016 in waking up to the populist campaign of Donald J. Trump, Democrats are confronting the reality of Vermont’s Independent Senator, Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders as the party nominee for the 46th President of the United States.

With one week to go to the Iowa caucus, Bernie is surging in the Hawkeye State. The first in the nation New Hampshire primary is one week later. Bernie is leading in the Granite State as well.

One or two weeks is a political lifetime to borrow a well-worn political cliche, but the reality of Bernie is … the reality of Bernie. A plurality of Democrats are feeling the Bern.

Bernie’s en fuego.

As a carnivorous political animal with a long track record in electoral campaigns, lobbying and government, Almost DailyBrett can humbly sense momentum in polling and from the results of seven Democratic candidate debates.

Sanders — not Elizabeth Warren — is The Leader of the progressive tide. Warren is Hillary Clinton on steroids without the charm. The party gave Hillary her turn in 2016. She lost to Trump.

It’s now the progressives turn, and they have their undisputed champion.

Some may contend that Almost DailyBrett is overly influenced by his home town of über-liberal, über-progressive Eugene, Oregon and surrounding Lane County. The last time Lane County voted Republican for president was Richard Nixon over George McGovern in 1972 … barely.

Bernie for President signs — some professional and many others home made — are everywhere.

Eugene is a college town and Bernie draws substantial support from the 22,760 Millennial/Z-Gen student-body of the University of Oregon. Eugene can be seen as anecdotal, not representative of the Democratic electorate as a whole.

That doesn’t mean Sanders is not gaining steam with his candidacy bordering on a similar Barack Obama-style movement in 2008.

Hillary Doesn’t Like Bernie

“Nobody likes him (Bernie). Nobody wants to work with him. He got nothing done. He was a career politician. It’s all just baloney … .” — Hillary Clinton’s Hulu interview about Bernie Sanders

“I know she (Hillary) said ‘no one likes me.’ I know this is not the type of rhetoric we need right now when we are trying to bring the Democratic Party together.” — Bernie Sanders in response

“When Hillary says ‘no one likes him,’ no one likes her. That’s why she lost, no one liked her.” — President Donald Trump interviewed at Davos

With enemies like Hillary, who needs friends?

FILE – In this Nov. 3, 2016 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt., appear at a rally at Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek in Raleigh, N.C. . (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Just as Trump ran against the “Deep State,” Sanders wants to run against the Democratic Industrial Complex (DIC) represented by the likes of Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden.

Some have complained that Bernie is less concerned with the party (e.g., he is not a registered Democrat), but more focused on The Movement. And yet we can today plausibly visualize his nomination this coming July in Milwaukee as the party’s choice for president.

The Presidency Is A Choice, Not a Referendum

“We are born free and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.” — POTUS 2019 State of the Union Address

Regardless of what the Bernie supporters say or the Bernie detractors contend, the honorable senator from Vermont has not been properly vetted. Since the prospect of Bernie as the nominee, much less president was considered to be remote … elite media collectively concluded … ‘Why bother?’

The media and punditocracy dismissed Sanders as an aging socialist with no chance of winning the Democratic nomination in a country in which economic-freedom capitalism has worked spectacularly well (e.g., sustained growth, jobs, low unemployment, expanding 401Ks and IRAs).

Donald Trump will not win any personality contests, but he has been the president for more than three years. The coming election will not be a referendum on Trump, but a distinct choice between the incumbent president and quite possibly … Bernie Sanders.

Without reciting the real questions about Bernie’s big government Democratic socialist revolution and inquiring how it will be financed and its impact on our free enterprise economy, one must ask whether Bernie can flip any red states without losing any blue states?

Almost DailyBrett can state with 100 percent impunity (trying to be humble here … and failing): If the red states stay red, Trump is re-elected game, set and match.

A Sanders candidacy may result in one-party California becoming even bluer, if that is even possible. The same will be true for Ben and Jerry’s Vermont. Ditto for Rhode Island and Maryland. Will Virginia, Colorado and Nevada stay in the azul column?

Reportedly, the news desk at CNN has become very concerned at the prospect of Sanders nomination. The same may be true at MSNBC … or not.






Quick name the chief executive who was asked to serve as the opening speaker at the ultra-exclusive Davos/Klosters (World Economic Forum) powerfest last week?

And while you’re at it, ask yourself who has more to say about an entire continent’s economy, common currency and way of life than any other chief executive?

Could this be the same chief executive that oversees the fifth most powerful economy in the world with a 5.5 percent unemployment rate (the lowest jobless rate for this particular nation in two decades) and a Standard & Poors AAA bond rating (certainly nothing to be sneezed at in this economy…Gesundheit)?

The answer to this question ist Deutschland’s Kanzlerin Angela Merkel. This brings to mind the next question: Is this “skirt” the most influential chief executive in the developed world (didn’t say the most powerful) eclipsing all of those that compete in blue “suits,” white shirts and power ties? One could certainly make this argument, maybe for the first time since the Earth cooled.


This week’s Economist and many other internationally oriented publications have focused even greater attention with each succeeding week on Chancellor Merkel. This week, the Economist proclaimed in a headline, “Merkel at the Top.” She may have to humbly concur with that conclusion as she was delivering the Davos keynote at a snowy Swiss mountain resort.

By entering into this discussion, I am not neglecting the obvious competing influence on this side of the Atlantic. There is no doubt that Mark Zuckerberg and his 800 million subscribers (third largest “country” in the world) deserves his due recognition…Does he ever wear a suit? Today, Zuckerberg’s Facebook (future ticker symbol, “FB”) issued its SEC mandated S-1 filing setting in motion the most long-awaited IPO since the formation of the Holy Roman Empire. But does a reported $10 billion market capitalized IPO translate into long-term influence?

Merkel’s Germany has already gone public (about 900 years ago), so it holds no sway over competing underwriters let alone warring stock exchanges all vying for the prestige of listing a high-visibility stock. Zuckerberg wins that competition in a nanosecond.


At the same time one might ask: Does Zuckerberg directly influence the economic fate of 500 million Europeans and the future of a common currency?. He may be personally XX times wealthier than Merkel, but he does not hold the balance of an entire continent in his hands, no matter how well he understands social media software algorithms.

Some may conclude that I have overlooked the present occupant of that white house on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, DC. Perish the thought. The power of the presidency is the presidency. Having said that, President Obama would be getting his knickers in a twist to be able to run for re-election based upon a AAA bond rating, low unemployment rate, decreasing budget deficit and increasing economic growth. He has none of these cards to play, but Merkel does…maybe that is why she is running 12 points ahead of her nearest competitor, Peer Steinbruck of the Social Democrats.

What is particularly noteworthy about the former physicist, who grew up on the wrong side of the Wall, is that she is not a horn blower. The Europeans seem to hold as many summits as the Republicans stage debates, and yet Merkel’s steady style seems suited (skirted?) for these gatherings.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy (like Obama , facing a tough re-elect) has been forced to accept the junior partner role to Merkel, ironically the Chancellor from the “Fatherland.” As Charlemagne wrote in The Economist, “It is an old tenet of European politics that the Franco-German partnership is necessary to disguise German strength and French weakness.”

Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney has criticized Obama stating that the president wants to convert America into a European-style social welfare state. Emulating basket case Europe is not a pleasant vision, but duplicating Germany’s economic accomplishments under Merkel looks mighty inviting right about now.




Miracle Workers?

One thing is certain; there are plenty of big egos in the PR business.

After all PR executives will be counseling heads of state and captains of industry this week, huddled against the backdrop of snow-covered peaks at the Global Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. There is little of significance that can’t be done without solid good public relations counsel. If you don’t believe it; just ask us.

Okay, PR executives can’t walk on water. And they can’t part the Red Sea. Ditto for turning water into wine or allowing the blind to see again. But can they publicly rehabilitate Tiger Woods? Can they put John Edwards back on the right course? . . . Can we discuss walking on water again?

Sometimes PR pros have to admit that the dog just won’t hunt. Tiger Woods, who is spending quality time at a sex-rehab clinic in Mississippi, now stands at 19 known mistresses and counting.

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“He is beyond PR redemption,” said public relations maven Howard Rubenstein. “He is in public relations hell right now. There is not a PR man on Earth who can restore his image.” http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/tiger-woods-save-image-reputation-public-relations-experts/story?id=9284989

How refreshing to hear this admission.

“Now my gut is that he’s got a life problem,” Howard Bragman, CEO of Fifteen Minutes Public Relations. “There are some major issues he has to confront.”

Ultimately, Woods can make a partial comeback based upon the fact that he is still the best golf pro on the planet. His first news conferences at a PGA event will be extremely difficult and will have to be carefully scripted, and he can get through them. However, the genie cannot be put back into the bottle. In fact, the bottle is nowhere to be found.

“He’s hemorrhaging; even a transfusion won’t help,” said Rubenstein. “He can never re-establish that perfect image of a happily married family man. Never. The best he can hope for is to re-establish his image as a golfing champion. If he wins consistently and doesn’t sink to 4 or 5, he’ll be applauded again – but just for golf. There will still be plenty of snickering behind his back.”

For John Edwards there is no Augusta. No Spyglass Hill. No Pebble Beach. No Torrey Pines, but there is Haiti. He was last seen in the Earthquake devastated Caribbean country trying to help the poor in rebuilding their lives. But can Edwards reverse his image? The answer is simply, no.

This is the ongoing saga with the ultimate “legs.” It never stops giving. After finally admitting that he is the father of Rielle Hunter’s little girl, Frances Quinn, he is faced with a tell-all book by the man enlisted to lie on his behalf, Andrew Young, and stories are surfacing about a potential Edwards-Hunter sex tape.


Kate Catlin of MMI Public Relations of Raleigh, NC, wrote an excellent piece about how Edwards violated all the rules of handling bad news. http://www.mmipublicrelations.com/blog/entry/in-the-case-of-two-year-old-frances-quinn-hunter-john-edwards-you-are-the-f/

They are essentially: 1.) Tell the truth (Edwards did not tell the truth and kept lying); 2.) Tell it All (Are we confident that we know the whole story, even now?); 3.) Tell it fast? (Two years will never fit anybody’s description of “fast”); 4.) Moving on (Haiti may not qualify).

“As the latest developments in the disaster that is John Edwards unfold, he continues to suffer from his poor crisis management over the last two years,” Catlin wrote.   “Because he refused to tell the truth, tell it all and tell it fast, the details keep trickling out, damaging his reputation all over again each time.”

Yep, yep and yep.

Tiger Woods and John Edwards are just two of the latest examples of cases where even the best PR talents are limited. There is no public rehabilitation of Mike Tyson, Tonya Harding. OJ Simpson or fill in the blank with your own example of a terminal public relations train wreck.

If those who command the public eye are prone to their own personal destruction, then that is the course they have chosen. They will ultimately be held accountable for their transgressions. As PR professionals we need to pick our battles and help those who want our assistance and deserve to be helped. They are not necessarily one and the same.

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