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New General Motors ad is insulting

Magnolia Marketplace usually pays almost no attention to television commercials that take up obscene amounts of time interrupting our favorite programming, whether that’s football games or Seinfeld reruns.

One that began airing recently, though, caught our eye, for all the wrong reasons.

It’s the new General Motors spot that begins with a montage of failure. A boxer gets clocked. Evel Knievel crashes his motorcycle. The boys from Animal House begin to realize the damage Dean Wormer has done to their social careers.

The second part begins with Knievel being helped off the ground, the boxer standing back up, and Blutarsky giving his Germans/Pearl Harbor speech. If you haven’t already seen it, watch it here.

The gist of the ad, whose concept came from a San Francisco-based agency, is General Motors offering thanks for its rebound, just in time for Thanksgiving and the company’s IPO.

But who is the company thanking? Because it shouldn’t be the taxpayers, whose money kept GM from going under. The midterm elections made it pretty clear how most folks felt about the bank and automotive industry bailouts. GM’s gratitude should be aimed at the politicians who thought billions of dollars other people earned would be well-spent propping up a company whose arrogance and flippance toward quality nearly killed it.

GM’s notion that taxpayers had any say at all in its rescue is proof positive that the culture that made the rescue necessary hasn’t changed that much. Otherwise, such an ad would never have passed the smell test. That’s something folks should consider when it comes time to buy a new car.

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  1. Greg
    November 30th, 2010 at 16:03 | #1

    I think you’re viewing this article through a skeptical lens. Rather than thanking taxpayers or the politians as you put it, GM may well be thanking those that invested in its IPO, the first step that may position them to pay me and other taxpayers back WITH INTEREST. Your last sentence seems to advocate people not buy GM which would result in a loss to taxpayers. That’s a very strange position to take just to take. Ever heard of the saying “don’t cut off your nose to spite your face”?

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