Suffrage net city

By MIKE MILIARD  |  November 28, 2007

LOOK FOR How many 9/11 references can you spot?
LAUGH AT His request that you “Become a Rudy Season Ticket Holder. Set up your recurring donation today!”

Give Rudy Giuliani credit: he finally had the good sense to get rid of the comb-over. (Doubly bold, since these days he’s probably too embarrassed to hide his chrome dome beneath a Yankees hat.) It appears he’s also keen to keep his Web site as tidy as his hairline. The jingoism — not long ago, the site’s main image was the 9/11 mayor staring into the middle distance with steel resolve as the Stars and Stripes rippled majestically behind him — is to be expected. This is a Republican, after all. But Giuliani’s an atypical Republican. So perhaps it’s not all too surprising to see him embracing multimedia technology more than some in his party, as with his Media Center, replete with streaming radio ads, flash videos (slow to load though they may be), and downloadable widgets to put “Rudy on your blog.” All of it’s presented in a plain-spoken, easy-to-navigate design. But, of course, even in the virtual world, old-world hard currency is a necessity, which is why you can’t miss the big red DONATE button.

Fred08 Official Beanie, Fred08 T Rally Towel, Fred Thompson 2008 Mousepad, Fred Thompson 2008 Titleist Golf Balls
LAUGH AT An article that invites you to “Meet the woman who got Fred Thompson into acting.”

“Oh shit, he’s dumb as hell,” Richard Nixon once said about the plainspoken actor/senator. The fact that Fred Thompson recently hired George “Macaca” Allen — a man who saw his Senate candidacy go down in flames in 2006, thanks to the power of YouTube — as his campaign co-chair suggests he hasn’t gotten much brighter in the past three decades. (At least Giuliani and Romney were smart enough to distance themselves from their own potential campaign albatrosses:
an escort-loving senator and a senator with a wide stance, respectively.) One thing strikes us when looking at Thompson’s site: the dominant color is not red, it’s not blue, it’s purple. What? Talk about being a wishy-washy flip-flopper. One also can’t help but notice the forced, folksy, first-name informality of sub-sections such as About Fred, Fred Stuff, FDTV, and (in the Fred08 Store) the Fredosphere and FredAcrossAmerica. Doesn’t this guy aspire to be, uh, President Thompson? If so, he’d be much better served amping up sections such as Fred File — a video/text blog outlining what he actually stands for — and maybe toning down his disdain for illegal immigrants.

LOOK FOR John’s answer to MySpace: “McCainSpace”
LAUGH AT His continued insistence that he’s being persecuted by CNN

John McCain’s Web site has been substantially overhauled recently. And while it’s not exactly all unicorns and rainbows now, it’s more interesting than it was before, when one was greeted with an austere black-and-white photo of the man himself, his name writ large next to it. It was easy to navigate, but it was all sorta boring: muted and monochromatic colors, a few gewgaws such as online polls, and a chance to buy something called “McCain debate-watching kits.” A Cause Greater — a sub-page that linked to several scholarships, charities, and nonprofits — was noble, but didn’t seem to offer much adrenaline for a foundering campaign. Now that McCain is catching a second wind (of sorts), one main attraction, advertised in vivid yellow cartoon script, is a flash-animation video game with Jib Jab–style talking heads called “The John and Hillary Show,” in which voters are ushered into a dark auditorium and asked to answer multiple-choice riddles about the two. (One that’s not posed: “Which candidate recently told a constituent who had asked, ‘How do we beat the bitch?’ that it was ‘An excellent question’?”)

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