In Illinois, we are using $33 Million in federal grants to pay public relations firm FleishmanHillard to advertise and promote Obamacare.
The Associated Press article promoting this story would be a funny read if their journalistic integrity wasn’t so pathetic and the situation wasn’t costing taxpayers so much money. And, yes, it actually is an AP article, not a story from The Onion as I first thought.
Check out this nonsense: “The campaign would use Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to convince young people to buy health insurance. It would be part of an ad blitz with TV, radio, billboards and other paid advertising.”
So Illinois is broke…no money for schools or anything else, but we can get $33M in federal money to spin what I thought was already the “law of the land”.
There are not enough 20-Somethings signing up for Obamacare, so the new plan is to hire a bunch of 20-Somethings to Tweet and post about it. Of course those guys won’t sign up for Obamacare either, put they will gladly be paid to tell others why they should. Hope and Change, my Millennial friends! Hope and Change!
My favorite gem in this one-sided AP report: “Now, nearly three weeks after the launch, the social media campaign is underway, but it’s muted. Paid advertising is on hold. With technology problems plaguing the federal website, state officials decided there’s no reason to boost traffic now.”
No kidding! So spend money promoting something but don’t actually promote it yet.
Could someone at the Associated Press actually question something, sometime?
If the AP had any REAL journalists left, here are a few questions they might want to ask:
1) Why does the US need to advertise to young people to get them to something that they are now forced by law to do?
2) Is there not a more effective way to spend tax dollars than paying a huge global over-priced PR firm to Tweet to Twenty-Somethings and ask them to sign up? Private corporations cannot budget for this as it is not cost effective.
3) For those workers at FleishmanHillard who are being paid to do this work: have any of them signed up for Obamacare?
4) If the government website is technically not capable of handling more traffic, then why not stop the whole PR program for now including the fees paid to FleishmanHillard?