Animal Crossing Continues To Be An Innovative Playground As Biden Campaign Begins Advertising On It

from the sign-of-the-times dept

For nearly half a year now, especially when this damned pandemic really took off, we've been bringing you the occasional story of how Nintendo's Animal Crossing keeps popping up with folks finding innovative ways to use the game as a platform. Protesters advocating for freedom in Hong Kong gathered in the game. Sidelined reality show stars took to the game to ply their trade. Very real people enduring very real layoffs used the game's currency as a method for making very real money. As someone who has never played the game, the picture I'm left with is of a game that is both inherently malleable to what you want to do within it and immensely social in nature.

So perhaps it was only a matter of time before one of the major Presidential candidates got involved.

Joe Biden's presidential campaign is rolling out a series of official virtual yard signs designed for display on islands in Animal Crossing: New Horizons for the Nintendo Switch.

As first reported by The Verge, the four virtual sign designs squeeze supportive messages for the Democratic candidate into a 32 x 32 pixel, 16-color custom pattern square, suitable for displaying on a sign in front of your virtual house. In addition to the standard "Biden Harris" and "Team Joe" designs, the campaign has also released a version with a rainbow pride logo integrated into the "JOE" branding and a design featuring Biden's signature aviator sunglasses in red, white, and blue.

Putting any thoughts about individual candidates aside, it's a pretty fun and low-risk use of a social video game by the Biden team. How much effort did it take to put these images and in-game items together? Not very long, to be sure. And, with turning out the youth vote being such a premier goal of literally any political campaign, this is at least an innovative way to try to build some momentum with younger voters.

And, thankfully, it won't be terribly intrusive, unlike the politics of this stupid real life hellscape we all live in. Nobody is going to see these signs unless they visit the island of the person using them. This isn't any more in-your-face than real life yard signs for a candidate.

All that being said, the Biden campaign should probably be on the lookout for some unintended fuckery, given historical attempts to do this sort of thing.

Political campaigns using video games to get their message out has a short and spotty history. Former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner was among the first politicians to be interviewed in Second Life's virtual world back in 2006, an interview locale which later became known for attacks by flying penis griefers.

Not going to lie, I'm sort of sorry I missed that one. Either way, it remains interesting to see how folks are finding new ways to use open and social worlds like Animal Crossing.

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Filed Under: advertising, animal crossing, joe biden, political advertising, video games
Companies: nintendo


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  • icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 12:13am

    Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

    ...because in the upcoming elections no matter how you feel about Trump, there's still something off about a 78-year old man hanging around a teen playground.

    Par for the course Biden comes off as just slightly creepy.

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    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 12:42am

      Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

      "there's still something off about a 78-year old man hanging around a teen playground"

      Well, your problem is that you're making dumb assumptions instead of addressing the reality of the platform.

      https://www.sciencefocus.com/news/why-are-so-many-people-playing-animal-crossing/

      "I t hasn’t just captured the imaginations of kids and teens either – according to Nintendo, one of the main player demographics is people in their 20s and 30s, looking for a nostalgia hit by playing the latest iteration of a game they first encountered in their youth.

      And by the company’s estimates, some 40 per cent of sales to date have been to female players."

      Slight the man all you want, but I see nothing wrong with targeting young adult female voters in an unobtrusive, unpatronising manner, even if you feel the need to misrepresent the platform he's using.

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      • identicon
        Cowardly Lion, 3 Sep 2020 @ 1:20am

        Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

        I know it's a tangent, but what with the hair sniffing and letting teenage lads stroke his legs.. Joe Biden is kind of creepy.

        And oh, the Tara Reade allegations? She came across as far more credible. His leading attribute is he's less odious than Trump.

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        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 1:30am

          Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

          "Joe Biden is kind of creepy"

          Whereas Trump is a self-admitted rapist who has made sexual comments about his own daughter.

          "His leading attribute is he's less odious than Trump."

          He's also way more experienced and qualified for the job, as well as not being someone who will install unqualified toadies with explicit conflicts of interest in important positions.

          Biden might not be perfect as a human being, but the difference between him and the sitting president is vast.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            COwardly Lion, 3 Sep 2020 @ 1:47am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya..

            Yep, no disagreement from me; I loathe Trump with every fibre of my being.

            I feel genuine sorrow for the people of the US, I badly wanted Sanders to win the Dem nomination, but there you are. My only hope is that Biden can be budged on some of his views such as police reform, legalizing marijuana, fixing student debt, universal health care... etc.

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 5:53am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for

              Honestly, baby steps are required. Let Biden run on his track record in office and his ability and willingness to start repairing the damage done by Trump. Then, when the fixes are visibly working he can step aside and let others with more progressive leanings take the wheel.

              People need to stop making perfect the enemy of the good. If you want those things to happen, the worst thing you can do is allow another Trump term (or worse. If you think Trump is bad, wait until there's someone competently destructive replacing the man-baby). Biden might not be the ideal choice, but he's a damn good step in the right direction.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 6:45am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america"

                " Let Biden run on his track record in office and his ability and willingness to start repairing the damage done by Trump."

                Looking at Biden's record he's not going to be able to "fix" much of anything. That's a huge frigging problem because all the harm Trump did is going to really have effect when Biden is in office.

                "If you want those things to happen, the worst thing you can do is allow another Trump term (or worse. If you think Trump is bad, wait until there's someone competently destructive replacing the man-baby)."

                Too true, which is why having an inept candidate step up to replace the malicious catastrophe has a good chance of making shit bad enough for Hitler to replace Hindenburg.

                I still believe Biden will be necessary to prevent the US from falling into a permanent state of palestine-israel guerilla war - because more of Trump and his cronies at this point in time might bring exactly that.

                But there is exactly zero chance Biden will be able to actually fix a damn thing of the damage caused by the Trump-Covid tag team so we should probably keep a very keen eye on whoever the GOP intends to roll out as candidate in the second election from now. Because at that time so much of the US will have collapsed conditions will resemble Germany in 1935.

                "Biden might not be the ideal choice, but he's a damn good step in the right direction."

                I'm afraid he's more of a pyrrhic victory. I personally hold the opinion there's a real chance the choices the US is facing is civil war now or the Bohemian Corporal later.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 7:28am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in ameri

                  "Looking at Biden's record he's not going to be able to "fix" much of anything"

                  I disagree, but hopefully we will get a chance to see what happens in reality.

                  "I'm afraid he's more of a pyrrhic victory. I personally hold the opinion there's a real chance the choices the US is facing is civil war now or the Bohemian Corporal later."

                  Well, call me optimistic but I'm hoping you're wrong about that. Unfortunately, the US still has enough power and influence to make lives very difficult for everyone else on the planet if either of those things happen.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 1:01am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in a

                    "I disagree, but hopefully we will get a chance to see what happens in reality."

                    Based on? The US isn't what you'd call a "fixer-upper" any more. If Gandhi and Mandela both came out swinging for the fences I still doubt the racial tension, general malice, and pending civil war could be defuse this generation. Everyone with any capability has been sacked or left government in affect. Every organization vital to anything or in the public focus has been staffed with yes-men or the flagrantly insane. Ten years of painstaking public-good legislation has been tossed on the bonfire.

                    To top that off the economy is tanking, jobless and poverty levels have been spiking, homeless rates are at unheard-of levels, and half of the media machine have spent years telling everyone that everything which as gone wrong is the fault of "liberals", "leftists", and, oh, you know the ones.

                    "Well, call me optimistic but I'm hoping you're wrong about that."

                    So do I. The hard facts are that the US is very splendidly headed for a collapse fully comparable to the state of Germany in 1935.

                    Biden, if he wins the game Trump is currently trying to rig his way, will barely have the time to step into office and preside over the collapsing house. And his entire CV suggests Biden's only strength is in steadfastly screwing his own party to cater to his lobby - which isn't the quality he needs for the times to come.

                    "Unfortunately, the US still has enough power and influence to make lives very difficult for everyone else on the planet if either of those things happen."

                    If there is any silver lining to be found it would be that the damage outside is likely to be limited. It's more likely for the US to go full-on paranoid isolationist instead while whoever ends up in charge after Joe Hindenburg has had his go spends their time in office building a legacy of in-country terror.

                    I admit to armchairing much of history but everything I've read so far suggests a frightening similarity between the US right now and the last days of the Weimar right after the Volksempfänger caught on and the unhappy masses were drowned in scapegoatist propaganda.

                    Biden won't be able to keep his winning strategy of sitting in a basement and busy himself with not being Trump for more than a few days after the election. After that he'll be held to task to fulfill actual goals. And right now there's plenty of reason to assume the only goals he's set for himself is to make his major campaign contributors happy.

                    I'll quote Hasan Minhaj here; "How is THIS the best we can do?! <points at both candidates>".

                    It's not that Biden is better than Trump although strictly interpreted that may be true. He's a bought-and-paid-for crook so deep in the trough you could make him the poster child of political corruption who simply happens to be less disastrous than the deranged megalomaniacal man-child with daddy issues he's running against.

                    He'll fix nothing. At best he'll manage to make a few soothing gestures, apply a few casual band-aids, and hold the safety valve shut on the boiler for a few years until it finally explodes.

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                    • icon
                      PaulT (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 2:28am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only

                      "Based on?"

                      Hopeless optimism that things are not yet broken beyond repair. There's 2 major things causing the current issues - incompetent cultists being installed and fundamental systemic failures. The second will be a very long and difficult job to fix, but getting people in charge of the right positions, some of which are still unmanned, should return dividends in the shorter term. Getting the adults back in charge will help a great deal, but we'll see what happens.

                      "If there is any silver lining to be found it would be that the damage outside is likely to be limited"

                      That depends on who they decide to take out with them. If Trump gets re-elected, it's not beyond the realms of possibility that they'll decide to wage full out war with China, or whoever else they pick as the scapegoat for their failing. Because we all know damn well that there's no possibility they'll have the honesty to admit that they were the cause of their own problems.

                      Biden, however, will be a lot more focussed on actually addressing the real issues domestically, whether or not you ultimately agree with his tactics in doing do. Even if it turns out he's just paying lip service to the real issues while implementing another agenda, it will be better for everyone than the alternative.

                      "He'll fix nothing. At best he'll manage to make a few soothing gestures, apply a few casual band-aids, and hold the safety valve shut on the boiler for a few years until it finally explodes."

                      Again, I disagree. But, even if that is the case he won't be in charge forever. I'd probably argue that he's not going to stand for 2 terms. So, what is most important is not the man himself, but who he lays the groundwork for. There are things being openly discussed now that were almost taboo subjects until recently, and the are at least a number of people who seem honestly interesting in doing those things.

                      Either way, while I understand your concerns, and agree with some of them, the future is fairly clear. A Trump win will be a global disaster. A Biden win at least opens the possibility that things can be saved, but the measure of that will be to see what he actually does. My bigger concern between now and then is how Trump and his cult react to losing. There will be many protests, lots of claims that the election was rigged, many acts of violence against his perceived opponents and the man will absolutely try burning as much to the ground in the interim. We can properly discuss how effective Biden will be at fixing things when we can see the state it's been left in for him.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 3:36am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "o

                        "Hopeless optimism that things are not yet broken beyond repair."

                        ...I honestly can't counter that. Forcing both eyes wide open to look at the absurd shit-show of a US president in 2020 re-enacting the life of Nero and worse, a G20 nation which elected that clown, I feel like the last shreds of actual optimism have been beaten straight out of me.

                        "The second will be a very long and difficult job to fix, but getting people in charge of the right positions, some of which are still unmanned, should return dividends in the shorter term."

                        ...which is the point, really. It's not just about fixing shit. It's about being able to show successes to the electorate. Biden will have four years. If he can't produce clearly visible results within that time span the GOP owns the next election again hands down.

                        "Because we all know damn well that there's no possibility they'll have the honesty to admit that they were the cause of their own problems. "

                        Yeah, we've seen that before, in the stinking mess of lying, spinning and framing which became the Gulf War v2.0. My guess is that "war" will be an escalation of the already existing tensions in the US. Trump will not start a war against an adversary who has a real shot at leaving him with egg on his face, or personally endangered. That leaves China out. Drone strikes against liberal peaceniks he can call out "Antifa!" at though?

                        "Even if it turns out he's just paying lip service to the real issues while implementing another agenda, it will be better for everyone than the alternative."

                        I'd agree that in normal circumstances that'd be the case. I'm very much afraid that those four years he'll get will be it. If he's perceived as just being "more of the same" then he instead just preps the plate for the next election being a decisive loss for a democrat party abandoned by disillusioned voters who aren't, by then, presented with the clear and present alternative of Trump.
                        One side will be abandoned by voter apathy and the other will be running the blitzkrieg smear campaign and fearmongering the GOP's become so successful at. Biden's successor will - at best - be another Trump, but might instead be a Goldwater or David Duke.

                        "So, what is most important is not the man himself, but who he lays the groundwork for."

                        And that, looking at the trend of US election history, is going to be a republican demagogue candidate bearing simple, usually violent solutions for complex problems.

                        "...the future is fairly clear. A Trump win will be a global disaster. A Biden win at least opens the possibility that things can be saved, but the measure of that will be to see what he actually does."

                        With the issue that if Biden wins, if he doesn't sharpen up considerably as compared to his prior record, the next election again will be one where the democrats are utterly spent of credibility and their voter base thoroughly disgusted. But without the threat of Trump to unite them and force them to the polls.

                        A nation in multiple-level crisis, where racism and political polarization at an all-time high, the government is falling apart due to corruption and ineptitude, and the best candidates on offer primarily mean more of the same; where the liberal majority is disillusioned and fatigued but the extremists are surging...where have we seen that before? France 1789, Russia 1917 and Germany 1935?

                        I'm currently trying to find reasons as to why the US shouldn't fit in that depressing template. All I've come up with is the tenuous statement that for the middle-class majority things aren't quite bad enough yet to spark the end game best described as "boots on faces".

                        "My bigger concern between now and then is how Trump and his cult react to losing."

                        A major concern, yes. I mean Trump's pre-presidential modus operandi was always to cut his losses and leave his gullible "fellow investors" to eat the bankruptcy. Now he's had a taste of power and importance he's never had, is surrounded by people who have less attachment to reality than even he does, and perhaps worst of all, has talked to real dictators able to do in real life what he has so very clearly always dreamed of. How he'll react to being ousted isn't predictable beyond that he'll as be petty and immature about it as he always has about perceived slights.

                        "We can properly discuss how effective Biden will be at fixing things when we can see the state it's been left in for him."

                        It's bad enough right now that we can say Biden won't be effective. Sorry, but I don't see any way short of a miracle Biden's presumed tenure ends as anything other than a crushing disappointment. Whether the ruins he inherits still have half a wall standing or are completely leveled isn't going to make that much of a difference.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                        • icon
                          PaulT (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 8:17am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's anothe

                          "Biden will have four years. If he can't produce clearly visible results within that time span the GOP owns the next election again hands down."

                          Do they, though? This is what I mean about optimism, but I'm not sure that we will see the same party in 4 years if there's a severe enough defeat. That's a short time to get anything done, but if the Democrats manage to win in a way that also gets the likes of Mitch McConnell ousted so that things can actually get done, it could be possible. bear in mind that half the issue with Obama's term was that he was blockaded by McConnell and his cronies who outright stated they would not allow him to pass anything valuable before he even took office.

                          But, we shall see. Once again, it's difficult to predict exactly what will happen, but it's all going to hinge on who is sworn in next January, and how. Not just in the Presidential seat, but across the government.

                          "Biden's successor will - at best - be another Trump, but might instead be a Goldwater or David Duke"

                          Maybe, but honestly I'm not playing that game. Everyone knew how things would turn out in 2008 and/or 2016 when Hillary was assumed to be in office. Neither happened, first because a man that nobody outside of serious Democratic circles knew existed 18 months before the election stepped up, and the second by a gameshow host who was originally considered a joke candidate, and who by some standards didn't even win the election. So, I hope you'll excuse me taking any predictions with the exact direction the entire country will lean toward in 4 years time with any degree of certainty. Even if there is historic precedent for the prediction, these are not historically predictable times.

                          "And that, looking at the trend of US election history, is going to be a republican demagogue candidate bearing simple, usually violent solutions for complex problems"

                          Trends can slow, or even be reversed. The same people who spent their lives terrified of the USSR are the same people supporting Russian interference across the world right now. The people who lauded attempts to overcome China's communist policies with capitalism are the same now whining that all manufacturing is done there and they have too much economic power. Hopefully, things will change for the better.

                          "It's bad enough right now that we can say Biden won't be effective."

                          Yes, and I will be sadly willing to admit that once we see what actually happens. But, I can't see any prediction that gets the world a better outcome with a Trump victory, so I know what I'm rooting for, and it's not the one that has a significant chance of taking the rest of us out with them.

                          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                          • icon
                            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 12:09am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's an

                            "But, I can't see any prediction that gets the world a better outcome with a Trump victory, so I know what I'm rooting for, and it's not the one that has a significant chance of taking the rest of us out with them."

                            On the one hand a glass of turpentine spiked with glass shards, on the other a ripe culture of typhoid fever.

                            I'd ask how the fuck we got here, but the "alarmist" US democrat crowd have been predicting shit like this since Reagan.

                            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                            • icon
                              PaulT (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 1:51am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there'

                              "On the one hand a glass of turpentine spiked with glass shards, on the other a ripe culture of typhoid fever."

                              Exactly. The former will almost certainly kill you if you drink it no matter what you do. The latter you can protect against with vaccination, can treat with antibiotics when infected, and has a fatality rate of around 30% if untreated (according to a quick google), and lower if treated properly. There are complications, but I dare say that the chance of intestinal problems that might be caused by typhoid are preferable to literally passing glass shards.

                              So, that's my point. You'd never choose typhoid under normal circumstances, but if you have to choose one or the other, hit me up with the typhoid.

                              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                              • icon
                                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 6:54am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, th

                                "So, that's my point. You'd never choose typhoid under normal circumstances, but if you have to choose one or the other, hit me up with the typhoid."

                                I know, I know...

                                I feel it's a real-life version of the Trolley problem. Down one lane you choose to let 10 people die to save one by doing nothing, down the other lane you deliberately sacrifice one to save ten.

                                Just that once you pull that lever there's a good chance they may switch the tracks.

                                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 6:05am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya..

            "Whereas Trump is a self-admitted rapist who has made sexual comments about his own daughter."

            Whataboutism swings both ways. Trump is what you get when you take the minion of some cinematic evil overlord and give him ideas that he, too, can be a Putin or Kim Jong-Un. He's a misogynist casual predator who only stopped talking about Epstein as his "best friend" when the guy had the poor taste to go after underaged girls in Trump's own house and marvels, on record, at the way celebrities get to grab women by the genitals.

            Yet the fact that Trump is absolutely fucking horrible in comparison to Biden doesn't exculpate Biden from the result of an honest appraisal.

            "He's also way more experienced and qualified for the job, as well as not being someone who will install unqualified toadies with explicit conflicts of interest in important positions."

            You really haven't looked at Biden. I wouldn't put it past him to set "Write an executive order" voucher auction up on e-bay. The man's entire career has been one of performing as ordered by his campaign contributors and party leadership. The only reason he won't install unqualified toadies with explicit conflicts of interest in important position is because he will be installing *very qualified personnel recommended by large lobbying interests and with just as explicit conflicts of interest, in those important positions instead.

            "Biden might not be perfect as a human being, but the difference between him and the sitting president is vast."

            None of that can or has been argued with by me. Not in that specific wording. That Biden isn't a witches cauldron full of malice, disastrous ineptitude and casual disregard for common sense and basic humanity - and is hands down the least disastrous alternative - still doesn't make him less of a creepy old bona fide crook.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 6:29am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for

              "Yet the fact that Trump is absolutely fucking horrible in comparison to Biden doesn't exculpate Biden from the result of an honest appraisal."

              It doesn't. But, you didn't give honest appraisal. You stated that his campaign providing digital signage to a game use by a large number of adults was tantamount to him personally hanging around a playground looking for kids to molest. That's fundamentally dishonest.

              "The only reason he won't install unqualified toadies with explicit conflicts of interest in important position is because he will be installing *very qualified personnel recommended by large lobbying interests and with just as explicit conflicts of interest, in those important positions instead"

              Do you have proof of that, or is this just worst-case scenario fantasising?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 7:14am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america"

                "You stated that his campaign providing digital signage to a game use by a large number of adults was tantamount to him personally hanging around a playground looking for kids to molest. That's fundamentally dishonest."

                It's fundamentally snide. It was exaggerated, but given Biden's record so far he's earned his heckling.

                "Do you have proof of that, or is this just worst-case scenario fantasising?"

                In the same way we have proof of Trump's malfeasance yes - public record.

                I don't like putting links in a real-time conversation because the comment always gets held for moderator checks but google the following;

                middle class joe biden has a corruption problem

                The "guardian" article and the followup in "the intercept" nuances it. Even the leftist view - add "jacobin" to the query - brings up Biden's public history and it's fairly damning.
                From the Guardian;

                "His career was bankrolled by the credit card industry. He delivered for it by spearheading a bankruptcy bill that made it harder for Americans to reduce their debts and helped cause the financial crisis. He not only authored and voted for that bill, he split with Barack Obama and led the battle to vote down Democratic amendments.
                His explanations for carrying water for the credit card industry have changed over time. They have never rung true.
                The simplest explanation is the most likely: he did it for his donors. At a fundraiser last year, Biden promised his Wall Street donors that “nothing would fundamentally change” for them if he became president. Now the financial world is raising huge money for his campaign. It clearly thinks he’s going to be its friend if elected. Most Americans, who get ripped off by the financial sector on a daily basis, aren’t looking for a candidate who has made their life harder.

                Second, healthcare. On 25 April, the day he announced his campaign, Biden went straight to a fundraiser co-hosted by the chief executive of a major health insurance corporation. He refuses to sign a pledge to reject money from insurance and pharma execs and continues to raise money from healthcare industry donors. His campaign is being bankrolled by a super Pac run by healthcare lobbyists.

                What did all these donors get? A healthcare proposal that preserves the power of the insurance industry and leaves 10 million Americans uninsured.

                Third, climate change. Biden signed a pledge not to take money from the fossil fuel industry, then broke his promise. Right after a CNN town hall on climate change, he held a fundraiser hosted by the founder of a fossil fuel conglomerate. He is pushing climate policy that has gotten dismal reviews from several leading environmental groups."

                It goes on and on. And once Biden himself has been analyzed there's the question of nepotism. Ukraine was a smear campaign but it wouldn't have been successful if Hunter Biden wasn't given 600k USD a year by a Ukrainian gas company for doing nothing at all.

                Biden's whole career has been founded on carrying waters for the biggest donor. His current candidacy is founded on a web of lies in favor of Wall Street, Big Pharma and insurance, the fossil fuel industry...

                He's more canny than Trump and less actively malicious - but if you wanted to convince the US citizenry that they get to choose between the last days of the Weimar or a GOP strongman who can "drain the swamp" but this time with more guns...then Biden is a very good candidate to cast in the role of Hindenburg.

                I sincerely hope I'm just worst-case fantasizing a nightmare here, I truly do.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 7:36am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in ameri

                  "It's fundamentally snide. It was exaggerated, but given Biden's record so far he's earned his heckling."

                  Not to that degree, especially not when his opponent is a far worse sexual predator.

                  I agree that if was setting up one-on-one sessions with gamers then the optics might not be great. But, his people are just letting people use signs with his name on them. That nothing like an issue until you made it one.

                  You've somehow read an article about his campaign sending out the 2020 version of a campaign poster and turned it into him trying to have sex with teenagers. That goes way beyond snark.

                  " And once Biden himself has been analyzed there's the question of nepotism"

                  ...and again something that if you're going to try throwing some shade at Biden, Trump has done vastly worse things.

                  Look, the problem with obsessing over Biden is that it really, really does not matter. People are still frothing at the mouth at fictional smears mounted against Obama during the 2008 election. He gave very little actual past behaviour to attack him on, so they invented it instead.

                  The point is, whatever Biden may or may not have done, or what you think he will do, there's absolutely no doubt he's the best option here compared to Trump, and the system says there are only 2 choices. So, why spend time trying to tear down the person who appears to be most closely aligned with your needs, as imperfect a candidate, or even human being, he may be.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 1:34am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in a

                    "Not to that degree, especially not when his opponent is a far worse sexual predator."

                    I beg to differ. If your neighbor is a convicted sex offender are you saying you'll stop giving your uncle Joe a hard time when he can't keep from molesting his female office staff?

                    That's the essential whataboutism, PaulIT. You don't give your own guy a pass just because you can point to his adversary who you happen to not like and say "But that guy does even worse things".

                    "You've somehow read an article about his campaign sending out the 2020 version of a campaign poster and turned it into him trying to have sex with teenagers. That goes way beyond snark."

                    Not really, no. Not when the person in question is someone who has a long history of being the type of guy you have to advice attractive women not to be alone in a room with.

                    "...and again something that if you're going to try throwing some shade at Biden, Trump has done vastly worse things."

                    The alt-right whataboutist argument again? Rejected, PaulIT. Either find something which says I'm wrong on my assumption about Biden or cease trying to use the republican defense when you can't really find anything good to say other than "...but at least he isn't as bad as candidate X...".

                    "So, why spend time trying to tear down the person who appears to be most closely aligned with your needs, as imperfect a candidate, or even human being, he may be."

                    Because even when you find yourself stuck between an asshole and a monster you still shouldn't pretend the asshole is not an asshole?

                    One fundamental reason why Trump is currently planted on the throne is that every time a shady crook has been elected the citizenry swings more towards the strongman. Voter apathy and disillusionment is a slow but fatal poison.
                    Yes, you're right about there being only two options on the table - and that in itself is an incredibly dim situation - and one of those options - Trump - is completely unacceptable.

                    But calling Biden the most closely aligned with the needs of the citizenry stretches the language to the breaking point. At absolutely best he's a political nonentity with notions that a woman's personal space does not include her actual person. More realistically he's the poster boy of grand-scale political corruption ironically catering to many of Trump's own favorite backers.

                    I'd argue that the one tearing Biden down is Biden himself and his entire career of selling himself to the highest bidder while assuming his hands are welcome in assorted panties are a few of the wrecking balls doing the demolition work.

                    Now, if I could ask - pretty please, with sugar on top - could you stop trying to shoot the messenger already?

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • icon
                      PaulT (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 2:42am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only

                      "That's the essential whataboutism"

                      Sigh... that's no what whataboutism means. Whataboiutism is an attempt to deflect to a different, usually irrelevant topic or a fantasy about what someone else might have been doing. For example, "Hillary would have been doing X" is an attempt to deflect away from what Trump is doing, or "what about Bill Clinton's past sexual behaviour" in a discussion about current allegations against Trump.

                      That's not applicable here. You are stating that the reason Biden is a bad choice for president because of his sexual history. Both men are applying for the same job, so the qualifications of both men are equally relevant at this moment in time, because they are both trying to get elected to the same position. It's not whataboutism to point out that his only real opponent is a far worse sexual predator.

                      "Not when the person in question is someone who has a long history of being the type of guy you have to advice attractive women not to be alone in a room with."

                      Yes, and his campaign sending out digital posters with his name on is not that situation, so why the fuck are you bringing it up?

                      "The alt-right whataboutist argument again?"

                      No, your ignorance of terminology and the actual argument have been exposed again, though.

                      "One fundamental reason why Trump is currently planted on the throne is that every time a shady crook has been elected the citizenry swings more towards the strongman."

                      Except, of course, the citizenry didn't do that. Half the reason he's in office is because the votes of the citizenry were overridden by the electoral college, and half the rest of the reason is a combination of misinformation campaigns released in the final moments of the campaign and electoral apathy keeping some people home.

                      "Voter apathy and disillusionment is a slow but fatal poison."

                      It is, but if both sides aren't motivated to vote this time around I'm not sure what would convince them.

                      "But calling Biden the most closely aligned with the needs of the citizenry stretches the language to the breaking point."

                      Again, you don't seem to understand how language words. If I give you a bottle of hydrochloric acid and a bottle of urine, it's not stretching anything to describe the urine as the closest thing to drinkable water, even if you would never choose to drink the urine if any other choice were available.

                      "Now, if I could ask - pretty please, with sugar on top - could you stop trying to shoot the messenger already?"

                      I'm not shooting anyone, I'm merely expressing my own thoughts and tearing down your misuse of words.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 5:43am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "o

                        "...or "what about Bill Clinton's past sexual behaviour" in a discussion about current allegations against Trump."

                        That's literally what you used with your "Yes, but look at Trump"*

                        "That's not applicable here. You are stating that the reason Biden is a bad choice for president because of his sexual history."

                        Well, my original statement was a snark aimed at Biden's sexual molestation history. But I'll buy your statement and also claim he'd be a very bad president for his long history of outright and unapologetic corruption.

                        "Yes, and his campaign sending out digital posters with his name on is not that situation, so why the fuck are you bringing it up?"

                        Because his prior history invites sarcasm, irony, and satire?

                        "No, your ignorance of terminology and the actual argument have been exposed again, though."

                        You mean you are being utterly dishonest and trying to win the argument by marginalizing the adversary? Here's the wiki definition for "whataboutism";

                        "Whataboutism, also known as whataboutery, is a variant of the tu quoque logical fallacy that attempts to discredit an opponent's position by charging them with hypocrisy without directly refuting or disproving their argument."

                        I.e. the very second I said something about A and you claim "still better than B" - it's whataboutism.
                        You could have said "Well, yeah, but between the creepy uncle and the sex predator..." but instead your rhetoric became that of completely exculpating Biden because, apparently, nothing he does is worth mentioning compared to Trump.

                        "...Half the reason he's in office is because the votes of the citizenry were overridden by the electoral college, and half the rest of the reason is a combination of misinformation campaigns and electoral apathy keeping some people home. "

                        Umm...partly. The electoral college is dead on and accounts for a significant skew of the voting result. But the major contributor to the Trump cult hauling the trophy home is 45 fucking percent of absentees. Looking at my own oft-quoted example of Weimar 1936 if 60% of the population decides not to vote, 12% of the citizenry can own the election. You want the minority to win the easiest way is to remove as many voters in general as possible.

                        The "misinformation campaigns" had been going on since before Obama's election. The GOP rhetoric that the baby-eating liberal monsters would sell your children to traffickers and forcefully settle serial killers in your neighborhood is old. Almost no one who voted for Trump would have been affected by "last minute misinformation".

                        "Again, you don't seem to understand how language words. If I give you a bottle of hydrochloric acid and a bottle of urine, it's not stretching anything to describe the urine as the closest thing to drinkable water..."

                        If that was the comparison, sure. But your assumption is flawed because what we're being offered to drink is a bottle of hydrochloric acid and a bottle of Typhus culture. Both of these are equally harmful but the latter option gives you a six day head start before it begins to kill you in an undignified and messy manner.

                        "I'm not shooting anyone, I'm merely expressing my own thoughts and tearing down your misuse of words."

                        I would posit that if that is how you react at satire and sarcasm levied against candidate A only because of your admittedly well-deserving hatred of candidate B then perhaps you need to realize you've started comparing notes with the Trump cult.

                        Look, as things stand Biden has a good chance of beating Trump in the next election. Should that happen the last thing any sane person would want to see is "more of the same" - because if Biden is given a pass on anything and he pulls even one of those blatantly obvious cronyist hand jobs he's so good at, then four years down that road the US may just re-enact the last days of the Weimar, in our time.

                        The measure of civilization isn't about what we say about our enemies but how well we criticize our own. Biden's earned his heckling. Abundantly, at that. He needs to know he's being watched and that none of his previous grifts will pass unnoticed - especially so because that shady crook will have the keys and passcard to the company safe handed to him.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                        • icon
                          PaulT (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 7:57am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's anothe

                          "That's literally what you used with your "Yes, but look at Trump"*"

                          No, what I literally said was that in an election with 2 participants then the same standard has to be applied to both, and by that standard it's clear the Biden is still better. The only dishonesty is removing context from an argument that depends on it.

                          I'm not saying that Biden is great overall, that he's perfect or that his misdeeds should not be judged. I'm saying that in the context of the election, and when compared to his only serious opponent, he comes out a lot better.

                          " by charging them with hypocrisy without directly refuting or disproving their argument."

                          Except, again, I did no such thing. I was simply pointing out the full context for your argument, which has to include the other person taking part in the election for which you say Biden is unsuited due to his history. The only honest thing to do in that circumstance is to apply the same standard equally.

                          I'm not arguing that Biden is not bad. I'm arguing that he's vastly better than Trump. Given that the entire context of. this conversation is the 2020 US Presidential Election, it's important to apply it to that context, not whichever other one you have in mind.

                          "I.e. the very second I said something about A and you claim "still better than B" - it's whataboutism."

                          No, it's really not if I'm not attempting to derail the discussion. To give a flawed analogy since the real life examples don't seem to be getting through to you - if you're a retail manager and you for some reason have to employ one of two applicants, it's fine for you to be concerned about one applicants' childhood shoplifting record. But, it's not a logical fallacy for me to point out that the other applicant has just been released from his second armed robbery conviction. Because while both are bad in isolation, the context shows you which is the correct choice even if you don't wish to approve of either.

                          Again, rag on Biden all you want, and in any context outside of the current one I'll mostly agree. But, in a conversation explicitly about the 2020 election, comparing the candidates is fundamentally necessary to make any judgement.

                          "how you react at satire and sarcasm"

                          Satire is dead. I thought you were seriously believing he'd be trying to talk to teenagers on an individual basis in the game, which is why I tried correcting you, then arguing back when you doubled down.

                          "Biden's earned his heckling"

                          But, his opponent has earned far worse, and the system is gamed to tell you that there are no other choices.

                          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                          • icon
                            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 12:16am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's an

                            "Because while both are bad in isolation, the context shows you which is the correct choice even if you don't wish to approve of either."

                            I see your point but I sort of have to point out it's a horrible argument - in the real world no one should be forced to employ anyone who passes under the requirement bar with a mile of headway.

                            "Satire is dead. I thought you were seriously believing he'd be trying to talk to teenagers on an individual basis in the game..."

                            ...every time I think "Oh, hey, not an /s needed there"...💩

                            "But, his opponent has earned far worse, and the system is gamed to tell you that there are no other choices."

                            Well, his opponent is getting much worse. As for the system all I can say is that it's still better than the old USSR "Pick any candidate, and this is the guy you can pick" one - which isn't exactly saying much.

                            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                            • icon
                              PaulT (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 1:29am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there'

                              "in the real world no one should be forced to employ anyone who passes under the requirement bar with a mile of headway."

                              Yet, that's exactly the situation with the election. There are only 2 candidates with any chance of getting the job. That's a horrible situation, but that's reality.

                              "...every time I think "Oh, hey, not an /s needed there"...💩"

                              It's truly impossible to tell any more. The number of times I read a headline on a site, think "that a funny mockery of how stupid some people are, but too stupid to be true", then find that it's a direct, in context, quote from an elected official...

                              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 5:46am

        Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

        "Well, your problem is that you're making dumb assumptions instead of addressing the reality of the platform."

        Not really, no. By your own quote; "...looking for a nostalgia hit by playing the latest iteration of a game they first encountered in their youth."

        So yes, it's well described as a teen playground, even if it's one where a large portion of adults come around to recapture nostalgia.

        "Slight the man all you want, but I see nothing wrong with targeting young adult female voters in an unobtrusive, unpatronising manner, even if you feel the need to misrepresent the platform he's using."

        Go google Biden's record. I'll wait right here, smiling at your no doubt unintended ironical word choice when it comes to Biden "targeting" young adult females.

        The problem I'm having is that Trump is such a malicious train wreck of disasters acting in unholy synergy people forget that Biden isn't the better choice so much as simply the least bad option on the table.

        Biden has - for his entire career - been a professional windsock-for-hire whose only political advantage ever came when he was needed to be a counterweight to a young, dynamic, skilled black president with an agenda and a plan...by being the democrats best answer to everything Obama was not. The only office he's proven fit to hold is one where the main duty is to keep the chair seat warm for twenty years until retirement happens. And even there you'd have to warn female office staff about him.

        Is he better than Trump? Assuredly, in much the same way that shooting yourself in the leg is better than shooting yourself in the head. As a few comedians have stated in disbelief; "How is THIS [pointing at both candidates] the best we can do?!".

        At least they fitted him with a VP who, if she's to do any good, will have to be the one actually running around getting shit done while he sits around wondering whether he could make like Bill and get an intern to take a few puffs off his cigar.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 6:00am

          Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya...

          "So yes, it's well described as a teen playground, even if it's one where a large portion of adults come around to recapture nostalgia."

          Not really. If Biden were to go to an 80s themed arcade bar or a nostalgia screening of an 80s movie to campaign, that doesn't mean he's trolling for teenagers just because the original incarnation of those things were considered to be for children.

          Even that's not relevant here. He's not personally wandering around the game trying to talk to people individually, he's providing some branded furniture.

          "Go google Biden's record"

          No, I'm aware of the accusations, which pale in comparison to Trump. But, none of that has any bearing on his campaign providing a few items similar to yard signs for his followers to use to help his campaign. Are you also attacking his campaign for physical yard signs because kids are playing on the streets outside?

          "Is he better than Trump? Assuredly"

          Then stop attacking him for doing far milder things than Trump has done.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 6:22am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for ya..

            "Then stop attacking him for doing far milder things than Trump has done."

            Before we keep moving with this argument...who are you, and what did you do to the real PaulIT?

            Because unless I misremember you're one of those who, same as me, That One Guy and Stephen T. Stone keep telling Trump cultists that whataboutism is a dishonest argument.

            I'm just not numbed enough by Trump's pseudo-epsteinian antics and inhumane self-serving malice to give normal bad behavior a pass just because it's, by now, considerably less oppressive to cheer for a generically dirty old man bought and paid for by every lobby group with an interest and a dollar.

            Put Biden against any other US president - including GWB - and he comes off as the stereotypical caricature of a bought politician you'd see in the funny pages. Put him against Trump and suddenly people hail him as the second coming?

            You know it's bad when "We're just gonna get screwed! Can't wait! Hurrah!! <insert googly eyes and heart emojis here>" is the call of the crowd.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 3 Sep 2020 @ 7:41am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america" for

              "Because unless I misremember you're one of those who, same as me, That One Guy and Stephen T. Stone keep telling Trump cultists that whataboutism is a dishonest argument."

              Whataboutism is an attempt to deflect from the subject at hand by distracting to something irrelevant. That's not what I'm doing here. You're discussing one candidate in a 2 party race, and attacking them on things that the opponent is way more guilty of doing. It's not a deflection tactic when it's directly relevant to the argument.

              "Put Biden against any other US president"

              He's not against any other president, he's running against Donald Trump, and the US political system says there can be no other viable candidate for this race. Therefore, what Trump has done far worse than Biden in the areas you're attacking him is directly relevant.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 1:45am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in america"

                "Whataboutism is an attempt to deflect from the subject at hand by distracting to something irrelevant. That's not what I'm doing here."

                It actually is. If your argument includes anything to the effect of "At least he's not as bad as..." then that's whataboutism.

                And the purpose is much the same; "Please stop spilling inconvenient truths about the guy we're backing!".

                "It's not a deflection tactic when it's directly relevant to the argument."

                It is, perhaps, a sign of the times that it's better to use "less bad" rather than "better", simply because there's just no good to be found in the upcoming election.

                "Therefore, what Trump has done far worse than Biden in the areas you're attacking him is directly relevant."

                That may strictly speaking be true but doesn't change the fact that Biden's actions lead to valid criticism and you've been using the rhetoric exactly like the republicans are doing all the time - by trying to shoot the messenger.

                Let's try this; If I highlight the very public aspects of Biden's career where he has several times managed to mistake professional courtesy for invitations to violate a woman's highly personal space in a very creepy touchy-feely fashion how is that me tearing Biden down rather than Biden tearing Biden down?

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 7 Sep 2020 @ 2:58am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in ameri

                  "It actually is. If your argument includes anything to the effect of "At least he's not as bad as..." then that's whataboutism."

                  Again, no. There are 2 people running for election. Their qualifications need to be compared with each other. If your argument is that one candidate is not suitable because of his past actions, then the actions of his opponent are to be directly compared.

                  Whataboutism is an attempt to deflect to something irrelevant. It does not apply when by any standard you apply, both men's history is directly and equally relevant.

                  "And the purpose is much the same; "Please stop spilling inconvenient truths about the guy we're backing!"."

                  But, I'm not saying that. You seem to be intent on pretending that I am, but I'm not.

                  My main argument is that your idiotic notion, that Biden's sexual history is a concern because some kids might see a poster with his name on it, is an idiotic notion.

                  "Let's try this; If I highlight the very public aspects of Biden's career where he has several times managed to mistake professional courtesy for invitations to violate a woman's highly personal space in a very creepy touchy-feely fashion how is that me tearing Biden down rather than Biden tearing Biden down?"

                  Again, you misrepresent my argument. My issues are with you pretending that the poster is akin to him being physically in the room with children, and the fact that you insist on pretending that his actions should be judged in a vacuum and not compared with his opponent's actions.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 5:46am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only in a

                    "My main argument is that your idiotic notion, that Biden's sexual history is a concern because some kids might see a poster with his name on it, is an idiotic notion."

                    I suggest you go read my OP again. I may have forgotten a /s for satire, but Biden's history abundantly merits a snark.

                    "My issues are with you pretending that the poster is akin to him being physically in the room with children, and the fact that you insist on pretending that his actions should be judged in a vacuum and not compared with his opponent's actions."

                    Political satire is dead.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • icon
                      PaulT (profile), 8 Sep 2020 @ 7:47am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "only

                      "I suggest you go read my OP again. I may have forgotten a /s for satire, but Biden's history abundantly merits a snark"

                      Satire is dead. You seemed to be either misunderstanding the story and believed that Biden would be attempting to personally communicate with players and/or that you didn't understand that a significant number of adult voters will be playing the game and using it to participate in the campaign process. If you did understand this, then I apologise, but it was not possible to tell from your original statement without other context.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Sep 2020 @ 12:19am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well, there's another "o

                        "If you did understand this, then I apologise, but it was not possible to tell from your original statement without other context."

                        It's pretty obvious. Or would have been, in less insane times.

                        From the Information Age to the Monarchy Of Poe. Didn't take long...

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Sep 2020 @ 5:22am

    Let's go crazy

    let's just elect both of the vice presidential candidates this time...you know, since we're giving everyone a shot at leading this country -- actors (Regan), reality show real estate moguls (Trump), etc..
    I can see it now: "President Harris & Vice President Pence"
    The Republicrats win!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 3 Sep 2020 @ 9:08am

    Well...

    Looks like Trump will start banning Japanese companies next.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Sep 2020 @ 10:10am

    messages for the Democratic candidate into a 32 x 32 pixel, 16-color custom pattern square...

    I'm having a problem imaging how you could make a readable sign out of 32x32 pixels. I don't suppose someone could post one.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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