First of all, where do the Nelson people get off calling the ad “juvenile and immature,”? Can anyone recall the “Cat in the Hat” ad, back when it was Ricketts who was crucified for protesting his valuation? (Thankfully, Don Walton can.) Back in July, we noted that the ad was “student-council-campaign-esque”. Well, the Ricketts camp can at least say their ad cost more.
But our problem with the ad is that we’re not sure that it succeeds in the message that it intends to send. The ad tries to tell the narrative of how Nelson fraudulently applied for Greenbelt status on his land by claiming it was for ag use, then after he was caught, refused to pay back the full amount for which he got a break.
So here’s the rub: some of the words in the song are hard to understand, most people don’t know what “Greenbelt” is, trying to explain that Nelson paid part, but not all of the taxes back is difficult, and in the end, you just laugh at the funny faces.
So while we’re all for the effort of trying to tell what Nelson did and how that should make one feel about voting for him, we’re just not sure this was the best vehicle. It’s sort of a compelling story to tell, and the comedy of the spot has probably overtaken the message sent.