Monthly Archives: August 2012

The ‘Unforgiven’ Eastwood Electrifies Americans, Offends Media

A while back, I wrote a post about Clint Eastwood’s “Halftime in America” advertisement, which ran during the Super Bowl. I thought it was brilliant, catching the exact sentiment of America.

Last night, I watched the same icon in his appearance at the Republican National Convention. It was unscripted. He did not use the TelePrompTer as every other speaker did.

He was allotted five minutes, yet took a full twelve to conduct a faux interview with President Obama. The President was represented by an empty chair, which seemed to electrify the audience in Tampa.

Unfortunately, he also electrified a vitriolic media corps. Today his appearance is being attacked by some in the media (who often show a clear bias in favor of President Obama and more liberal causes).

It doesn’t surprise me that he’s being attacked by these outlets. His offense, in their eyes, is that he appeared at the Republican National Convention at all. Had he made the same appearance at the Democrat’s convention next week, and done the same “interview” of an absent Governor Romney, he would have been hailed as a bold genius.

But the wisdom of Clint Eastwood is this: In his “Halftime in America” advertisement he captured the essence of America, one of hopeful pride, deep strength and resilience. Last night, he did the same in an unscripted, unedited moment. He noted that the fact 23 million Americans are unemployed or underemployed is a national disgrace, one that makes him cry. And that none of us, not even the President, has done enough to help our fellow Americans.

One specific passage in his remarks will resonate deeply with the millions of Americans who watched him last night (allow me to paraphrase):

As Americans, we own this country. It belongs to each and every one of us.

Politicians, and those we elect, are our employees. Not the other way around.

When they don’t do a good job, or don’t do their job at all, we need to let them go and hire a replacement.

Those in elected office (regardless of party) and those in the biased media know the simple power of those truisms. That sentiment is exactly what America feels right now.

In “The Unforgiven,” a retired gunslinger named William Munny comes out of retirement for one last job. Last night, Clint Eastwood did one last job. The biased media knows he was effective, and that’s why today they’re trying to undercut him with such harsh criticism. I’m sure it couldn’t matter less to Clint Eastwood. And it couldn’t matter less to the tens of millions of people whose thoughts he succinctly put into words.

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Filed under Media Bias

Does Biz Speak Make You Cringe, Too?

I recently came across a blog post titled “12 Most Offensive Phrases You Could Use In Your Business” authored by a gentleman named Marc Ensign that had me questioning the way I communicate.

I’m not sure what prompted Marc to write this post, but I was hooked after glancing at the opening line “Listening to most business people talk makes me cringe.” In his post, Marc contends that most people who fall into this category “purposely sprinkle their language with fancy schmancy catch phrases and five dollar words…”

Could I be one of those people? Are you?

After reading Marc’s article, I was inspired to continue his mission. Here are a few more thrown about the business world on a daily basis.

  1. “I truly appreciate what a collaborative effort this has been…” which translates to “I fully intend to immediately dismiss your ideas as soon as this conversation is over.”
  2. “It is what it is…” more often than not means that someone on your team didn’t think of this possibility, and now everyone is scrambling to cover their tracks, including you.
  3. “This is a real game changer…” really means you are overpromising something to your client or business partners, and when things go awry, you’ll resort to #2 above.

What are some of your favorite overused and/or offensive phrases overheard in business situations? Give us “your two cents.”

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Filed under Reputation Management