White House now selling ObamaCare by … tweeting pictures of cuddly animals

posted at 4:41 pm on September 26, 2013 by Allahpundit

And you know what? I bet it’ll help, too. “Idiocracy” isn’t so funny anymore on repeat viewings, is it?

Says Jon Gabriel, “Thanks, BuzzFeed.”

That last one was retweeted by the White House and is sitting at the top of their feed as I write this. “But wait,” you say. “Who’s behind this mysterious ‘Adorable Care Act’ account that the White House seems to like so much?” Good question. The New York Daily News and the Atlantic wondered the same thing, but so far no one knows who’s running it and HHS’s communications team hasn’t returned requests for comment. (OFA did return a request and swears it’s not them.) To my eye, the all-caps font above looks like the same one used in the White House’s own ObamaCare promos. If some random supporter is doing this, they’re taking care to dot their i’s and cross their t’s to make it look like an official production.

And if O’s team *is* behind it, they probably have a good reason why. I used to laugh at dopey panders like this, but not anymore:

One fascination in a presidential race mostly bereft of intrigue was the strange, incessant, and weirdly overfamiliar e-mails that emanated from the Obama campaign. Anyone who shared an address with the campaign soon started receiving messages from Barack Obama with subject lines such as “Join me for dinner?” “It’s officially over,” “It doesn’t have to be this way,” or just “Wow.” Jon Stewart mocked them on the Daily Show. The women’s website the Hairpin likened them to notes from a stalker.

But they worked. Most of the $690 million Obama raised online came from fundraising e-mails. During the campaign, Obama’s staff wouldn’t answer questions about them or the alchemy that made them so successful. Now, with the election over, they’re opening the black box…

It quickly became clear that a casual tone was usually most effective. “The subject lines that worked best were things you might see in your in-box from other people,” Fallsgraff says. “ ‘Hey’ was probably the best one we had over the duration.” Another blockbuster in June simply read, “I will be outspent.” According to testing data shared with Bloomberg Businessweek, that outperformed 17 other variants and raised more than $2.6 million.

In keeping with the campaign’s interest in behavioral science to give it a leg up on Romney, they tested dozens of dumb subject headers like “Hey” on focus groups to see which ones generated the most interest. The cuddly-animal approach may be so silly that the White House would prefer not to take formal ownership of it, but if they’re running this, rest assured that it’s been tested for effectiveness too. Although you really don’t need science to understand why, if your chief concern is getting young adults to buy insurance, a series of instantly viral BuzzFeed-esque pics of fuzzy bunnies touting the rollout of the exchanges next week is a few Photoshop hours well spent.

Presumably they’re saving up the cat GIFs for launch day, to really make an impression. Just think — if “sad panda” had been deployed a few weeks ago for the Syria attack, Assad might be dead by now. Exit quotation:


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No one in DC will repeal Obamacare and that makes me a Sad Panda.

RDH on September 26, 2013 at 4:43 PM

I can’t wait to get my $2500 savings…

d1carter on September 26, 2013 at 4:44 PM

For some reason, CJ John Roberts come to mind…

d1carter on September 26, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Exactly On Target to their audience though – pre-teen princesses, all of them.

Sir Napsalot on September 26, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Oh, Dear Lord. Our tax dollars were used for this?

kingsjester on September 26, 2013 at 4:47 PM

The sad thing is that the low information voter will lap this crap up….

I bet all three of the major networks will reference this campaign on tonight’s broadcast….

Athos on September 26, 2013 at 4:47 PM

If this cluster phuck gets implemented, people will go from Sad Panda to Bad Santa.

NapaConservative on September 26, 2013 at 4:48 PM

This is our Government.

Aldus Huxley was right.

batterup on September 26, 2013 at 4:48 PM

So that’s where the $67 million missing from the IRS Obamacare slush fund went to…..

Athos on September 26, 2013 at 4:49 PM

Bmore, pls. photoshop one of these with, each

1. obama
2. Sibelius
3. Michelle Obama

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 4:49 PM

Leftist rats and slaves, are you not ashamed of your man eunuch?

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 4:50 PM

No wonder that Americans trust more in Putin’s ‘leadership’.

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 4:51 PM

I’ll bet those are all over Daily Squee. So lame!

jix on September 26, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Defund Obamacare or the cute little puppy gets it.

rbj on September 26, 2013 at 4:52 PM

dopey panders

Mad skillz, AP. Pandas/panders…*rimshot*

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 4:52 PM

Bmore, one more, pls.

Don’t be a sad panda:

Pls. add

Be a dead panda.

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 4:52 PM

AP, oh AP, if only just once you’d photo-shop again, you master of them all.

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 4:53 PM

Someone should do a send-up, with manbearpig exulting that his second chakra is now covered.

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 4:54 PM

it’s changed my mind

gerrym51 on September 26, 2013 at 4:55 PM

I guess part of the effectiveness is due to our genetically driven attraction to infants, whether human or animal. But I don’t suppose any tweets about how much easier it will be to abort that cute little baby are forthcoming.

Fenris on September 26, 2013 at 4:57 PM

Any young person who falls for this should be unhireable. Any one who can’t figure out that this is a bum deal for them is too dumb to work.

Kids.. just wait until you get sick then join up, pay the tiny fine and sign up then.

It doesn’t make sense for you to pay $100-200 a month for nothing. How often do you go to the doctor? What does it cost? Yeah. So you are going to pay $1200-2400 instead of paying the $90 dollar Urgent care amount, what maybe twice a year at most? $180 vs. $1200-2400.

If they find something major at Urgent care you pay a $100 dollar fine and you get covered then. At that point it pays to pay monthly!

Do the math. Don’t throw away your money. Buy a game system instead!!! A real cool one with a big screen and a theater sound system.

I mean if you are going to throw your money away at least have fun! And it will help the economy too!

And oddly enough, if I were hiring you. I would not hire someone who can’t do simple math and figure out that is a bum deal!!!

petunia on September 26, 2013 at 4:57 PM

I Can Haz Obamacare?

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 4:58 PM

Actually take the $2400 and go to Europe get your meds there.

petunia on September 26, 2013 at 4:59 PM

Now bring on the old men, young boys and horsecarts and the anology is complete!

ThePrez on September 26, 2013 at 4:59 PM

I think even as an 18 year old I would find those ads insulting.

Can you be more obvious in your Paternalism?

Hey,chicks, have some self respect. They think you are 3.

petunia on September 26, 2013 at 5:02 PM

Old and Busted: Panda Diplomacy
The New Hotness: Panda Democracy

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 5:02 PM

they should use this one

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQnNH7I07RY

dmacleo on September 26, 2013 at 5:02 PM

o far no one knows who’s running it

Dig deep enough, and it’s a company owned by an Obama campaign bundler, and being paid $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ to produce this adorable crap.

GarandFan on September 26, 2013 at 5:04 PM

This is so stupid it’s unbelievable.

forest on September 26, 2013 at 3:25 PM

We’ve reached new depths of stupidity within an hour an a half.

forest on September 26, 2013 at 5:04 PM

So they couldn’t afford the “Chocolate Rain” dude?

Chuck Schick on September 26, 2013 at 5:06 PM

To really sell obamacare to the democrat base, perhaps the White House should tweet photos of “cuddly” aborted babies …

obamacare will subsidize up to 111,500 abortions per year …

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/359524/how-obamacare-will-subsidize-abortion-chuck-donovan

Pork-Chop on September 26, 2013 at 5:08 PM

“Idiocracy” isn’t so funny anymore on repeat viewings, is it?

It’s a preexisting condition, it’s covered.

Oxymoron on September 26, 2013 at 5:08 PM

Always refer to it as “Robertscare.”

kunegetikos on September 26, 2013 at 5:10 PM

When I see a baby panda I think – oh shit! There must be a mother panda nearby and she is going to eat me up and poop me out!

Blake on September 26, 2013 at 5:11 PM

Sad Panda is the Chinese joint in my neighborhood. It’s right next door to Mad Dental and across the street from Irate Nails.

It is a tough neighborhood mind you.

DanMan on September 26, 2013 at 5:17 PM

Oh crap! It’s the pedo bear.

John the Libertarian on September 26, 2013 at 5:17 PM

Funny that they took Sad Panda, from South Park, since the S.P. folks themselves are not known to be fans of big government.

(Speaking of which, there’s a brand new episode here, on the NSA.)

Tzetzes on September 26, 2013 at 5:19 PM

This has creepy Jim Messina written all over it.

h a p f a t on September 26, 2013 at 5:20 PM

Where’s the one featuring the monkey with the hand grenade?

CurtZHP on September 26, 2013 at 5:22 PM

“Idiocracy” isn’t so funny anymore on repeat viewings, is it?

Thanks to the Adorable Care Act, I have to buy an insurance plan I don’t need, or Beef Supreme will kick my ass.

forest on September 26, 2013 at 5:22 PM

Actually… I bet those cheapest policies they are pushing don’t hit a deductible in a year… so in my scenario above it isn’t $180 versus $1200-2400 it is $1380-$2580.

Wont’ they be pleased after a few months to find out they still have to pay for the doctor visit they thought was going to be free.

I remember finding out the reality of insurance… It was back before I had co-pays… just deductible. I was really unhappy to figure out that I had to pay $500 out of pocket before the Insurance kicked in. That was more money back then.

petunia on September 26, 2013 at 5:22 PM

… mmm, slow-roasted, garlicky, juicy Panda … m-m-m …

Gee, Mr. Awfully-Obliging-With-My-Money, is my Pepcid covered?

M240H on September 26, 2013 at 5:22 PM

Dammit! I knew I should’ve gone with a zoologist as my primary care physician.

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 5:24 PM

I can see it now: Panda Express & Urgent Care

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 5:25 PM

A little spin in my Bass-o-matic would perk that Panda right up.

trigon on September 26, 2013 at 5:27 PM

I can see it now: Panda Express & Urgent Care

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 5:25 PM

About a mile from my house, those two are across the street from each other.

Midas on September 26, 2013 at 5:27 PM

It’s not like Aflac would stoop to something like this.

kunegetikos on September 26, 2013 at 5:29 PM

Hey, it is appropriate:

Pretty soon, decent healthcare will be about as rare as are pandas

LegendHasIt on September 26, 2013 at 5:30 PM

Way to rip off South Park, Barry.

Philly on September 26, 2013 at 5:38 PM

I can not find video of actual rats fleeing an actual ship.

Shameless Blog Promotion #TEMS

mad saint jack on September 26, 2013 at 5:38 PM

About a mile from my house, those two are across the street from each other.

Midas on September 26, 2013 at 5:27 PM

Just for sh!ts and giggles, go into Panda Express and try to schedule a check up, then mosey over to Urgent Care and order a Panda Bowl.

Show them the Sad Panda ad when they get confused.

Christien on September 26, 2013 at 5:39 PM

Um… were none of the people behind this pop-culture wise enough to realize that the “sad panda” meme was original designed to mock a law as being bad and unnecessary? (Originally it was mocking civil lawsuits under sexual harassment law.)

calbear on September 26, 2013 at 5:41 PM

I don’t know if I buy the individual email contribution bit. How many fake twitter followers did he have? They are using these supposed swaths of “followers” to try and convince people that there is massive support for this guy.

JAGonzo on September 26, 2013 at 5:43 PM

I don’t know if I buy the individual email contribution bit

Good point.

kunegetikos on September 26, 2013 at 5:52 PM

AP, I could get you a panda cub cheap. You’ve got my email.

DarkCurrent on September 26, 2013 at 6:01 PM

JAGonzo on September 26, 2013 at 5:43 PM

those fake twits voted 100% dem

DanMan on September 26, 2013 at 6:03 PM

I think the big picture about the health care law is not just to make everyone buy into it, but to gather every shred of personal info on every single person and store it in their shiny new data storing facility and share it with multiple agencies, policed, of course, by the IRS. Don’t want the government to know you had a bout of herpes or suffered from depression? Tough sh*t. It’s just another power grab.

scalleywag on September 26, 2013 at 6:05 PM

Figures that a panda will be the first cute animal to bite you in the ass or anywhere for that matter if given half a chance. Hmm, find a pic of an attacking panda and substitute that adorable tweet.

AH_C on September 26, 2013 at 6:11 PM

Pet health insurance up next!

Resist We Much on September 26, 2013 at 6:54 PM

Pandas seem to have trouble reproducing in American zoos. After Obamacare puts all the ob/gyn doctors out of business, the pandas will be even sadder. But this is how Democrats panda to the base!

I guarantee that a real hamster in that position on a swing would be struggling like crazy to get off!

A better caption for the “ducks in a row” photo:

Obamacare: Voted by Quackpots, Not all it’s quacked up to be, All Ducked Up!

“Matthew”‘s next photo should show a pit bull, with a sign marked Obamacare around its neck, and the caption: I’m gonna bite you in the wallet!”

Steve Z on September 26, 2013 at 7:11 PM

Sad Panda is the Chinese joint in my neighborhood. It’s right next door to Mad Dental and across the street from Irate Nails.

It is a tough neighborhood mind you.

DanMan on September 26, 2013 at 5:17 PM

There’s also a restaurant in Paris called “Le Chien Qui Fume”, or “The Smoking Dog”. Maybe Barky had to cook his dogs before eating them.

Steve Z on September 26, 2013 at 7:17 PM

“Not us”

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 8:11 PM

They’re being laughed at all over the news.

Schadenfreude on September 26, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Daddy, why are all the pandas dying?

Noncentsical on September 26, 2013 at 8:57 PM

Not only was this Un-Constitutional already Failed Law shoved up our @r$eS / the @r$e$ of a majority of Americans who opposed it, now our tax dollars are being spent on BS ads like this to try to make us change our mids and LIKE Obamacare. I hate to tell Obama, but unless this freakin’ Panda is going to pay up to 70% of my premiums like Obama is forcing us to do for our millionaire politicians, then he can ram these ads up HIS nether-region!

easyt65 on September 27, 2013 at 9:07 AM