Thursday, December 27, 2001

When the Bush administration figured out, in the wake of September 11, that the country had a bit of an image problem in the Arab world, they knew just where to turn --- Madison Avenue. They tapped a veteran ad executive named Charlotte Beers, known for her work for American Express and Uncle Ben's rice. She didn't seem fazed by the transition from huckster to Undersecretary of State; in fact, she didn't seem to recognize there was a transition, saying in interviews,

This is the most elegant brand I've ever had to work with .... President Bush and Secretary Powell are embodying the brand. That's a pretty inspiring place to start."

and informing the Senate, in an address, "you do embody our brand --- the United States."

With that can-do attitude, and clear-eyed appreciation for the situation, what could possibly go wrong?


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