The French have an expression for it (don’t they always?) — l’esprit d’escalier — for when you think of the perfect thing to say (witty, caustic, brilliant), but too late, after the moment has passed. Hence, the reference to “escalier” or staircase, suggesting you’re on your way out.
So it is with the GOP’s planned $10 million worth of Super PAC attack ads against President Obama based on Rev. Wright’s inflammatory sermons.* You either did those ads in 2008 or you fugeddaboudit. Obama is president now, and unless you come up with evidence that he was a murderer or a child molester, old stuff doesn’t matter.
And who’s doing these ads? None other than Fred Davis, the guy I can’t figure out why anyone hires because his work is so appallingly awful. He did the “Demon Sheep” ad for Carly Fiorina that garnered snickers, not votes. He did the “I Am Not a Witch Ad” for Christine O’Donnell that garnered incredulity, not votes. He did the bizarre series of Jon Huntsman (remember him?) Zen ads with a figure on a motorcycle and a one-word tag line that garnered bewilderment, not votes.
The money is coming from Joe Ricketts, who founded TD Ameritrade.
Davis’ pitch is that he seeks to do “exactly what John McCain would not let us do.” If McCain wouldn’t do it, you can’t do it four years later. Obama is running as POTUS, not as Wright’s parishioner.
* “G.O.P. ‘Super PAC’ Weighing A Hard-Line Attack on Obama,” Jeff Zeleny and Jim Rutenberg, NYT