This Bud's For A Democrat
This Bud's for you. Or...it used to be. Now Budweiser (or more directly, it's Dutch parent company, Anheuser-Busch) is giving your Bud to Democrats in what is one of the most subtle, but totally blatant endorsements of the 2016 election season.
In advertisements airing across America and Canada during and after the Super Bowl, Bud Light appears to be the "Bud Light Party", brandishing its supporters with the beer's trademark colours, which also happen to be the colours of the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party. Before we brush this off as a silly coincidence and a clever marketing ploy in an election year, we'll need to look at who Anheuser-Busch commissioned to star in their new, pro-Democrat ad campaign.
Not only does the ad feature shades of Democratic blue, it stars two of the most overtly Democratic comedians at the top of the Hollywood food chain. One is related to a Democratic senator, the other is an outspoken advocate for marijuana legalization.
Amy Schumer is the cousin of New York senator, Chuck Schumer, and an anti-gun advocate who made news for her campaigning and lobbying against gun rights. Her outspoken advocacy started following a mass shooting at a theatre that was playing her movie Trainwreck and continued after the San Bernardino terrorist attack. Her cousin, Chuck Schumer, has been a Democratic senator since 1998. He has spent his time in office railing against gun rights and against extended border security. Schumer has stated his support for open borders and for taking away the rights of states to enforce their own borders. In 2009, that same Chuck Schumer called a flight attendant a bitch for asking him to turn off his cellphone.
Both Chuck and Amy have appeared at a press conference together in an effort to condemn gun owners.
Amy Schumer's partner in crime for Bud Light's Democratic ad is none other than Canadian actor and professional pot head, Seth Rogen. It's near impossible to find a Seth Rogen movie that doesn't involve the actor lighting a joint, getting high or promoting marijuana consumption. Seth Rogen has lashed out at Republicans on social media, including Ben Carson and Donald Trump, and has openly expressed his support for Democratic candidates in the past.
The ad features crowds of supporters wearing blue and waving blue signs, making the scene in front of the Lincoln Memorial look reminiscent of a Hillary or Bernie rally.
"No one brings America together like beer. That's why we're forming the Bud Light Party. Wait til you see our caucus. We got the biggest caucus in the country." – Amy Schumer and Seth Rogen
The ad also uses Democratic talking points about a "country divided" and Obama's famous points that blame Republicans for "not agreeing on anything". In front of a crowd of blue, Rogen and Schumer tout themselves as heroes capable of uniting Americans.
Both Hillary and Bernie have shamelessly used the same talking points about unity and happy utopiansm at rallies and campaign events. But neither have addressed Obama's failure to unite Americans and heal divisions while cuddling up to his record and exploiting his legacy.
"When we come together – all of us – with a sense of shared purpose and shared humanity, we can solve any problem and heal any divide." – Hillary Clinton
The intentions of this new ad campaign couldn't be more obvious. Hire two Democrat Party supporters, put them in an ad that subconsciously reminds people about Hillary and Bernie, and begin airing it during the biggest ratings event of the year. The ad allows Anheuser-Busch to deny any kind of political endorsement, while still unofficially throwing their support behind a Democrat candidate. Conveniently, Bud Light's colours are blue and the ad itself seems neutral, but the involvement of Schumer and Rogen makes it clear.
Had Anheuser-Busch been looking to make a neutral, non-partisan advertisement, they could have chosen from an array of less expensive (but equally popular) comedians with less obvious political affiliations. Instead, they set their sights on Amy Schumer following her highly publicized advocacy against guns, and Seth Rogen following several of his highly publicized political rants against Republican candidates.
In the world of corporate politics, there are no coincidences.
This clever new ad allows Democrats and Anheuser-Busch to reciprocate the benefits. Bud Light can capitalize on the enthusiasm and energy of Bernie Sanders by connecting familiar images with their product. Anheuser-Busch can reciprocate by using their ad to remind viewers about the "energy and optimism" espoused by the Democratic Party.
If you doubt all of this, you might want to read more material from Sigmund Freud, his nephew, Edward Bernays and some books on the subliminal artistry of marketing. You'll also be quick to learn that the placement of Schumer and Rogen was no accident. To the larger and less informed audience, their appearance is nothing more than star power and a good comedic choice. To the smaller but more informed audience, their appearance is confirmation of Anheuser-Busch's political endorsement.
There are several books on marketing that touch on the subliminal connections and associations used in advertising. To further your knowledge and awareness on the innocent and not-so innocent techniques, check in the marketing aisle at Chapters or check out Google's book collection here. None of this means that Anheuser-Busch is being malicious or deceptive by endorsing Democrats, it just means that we shouldn't be so naive to think such sneaky endorsements don't happen.