Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday's Poetry: "Al Franken's Fundraising Sonnet"

by Pa Rock
Poetry Appreciator

If you are anything like me and somewhat politically aware, you are probably sick to death of emails from candidates begging for money.  It’s not like the old days when it cost actual money to send out campaign literature  and tear-stained pleas for cash.  Now, with email being essentially free, thousands of potential money contributors can be blanketed with requests at just the push of a button.

As the political season has dragged on, the quality of the emails are evolving.  The campaigns know that most of these irksome communications are routinely deleted by most recipients, so the game is to make them so interesting in the subject line that those receiving the nuisance emails will open them just out of curiosity.

One of the current trends is to put the word “personal” in the subject line, you know – just a quick note from the candidate running for Congress in New York to you “personally” – because the old coot or cootess really wants to know what you specifically are thinking – and please send money. 

Another strategy that I am enjoying (not!) are emails sent from the candidate’s iPhone.    That crafty bugger took time out of his extremely busy schedule to pull his iPhone out of his pocket and send me an email!  Wow!  Am I important, or what?

There are also emails focusing on specific issues that are worded to make readers so angry that they will whip out their checkbooks, those with surveys attached that make readers think their opinions will help shape the positions of the candidates, and emails with artificial deadlines that beg for money RIGHT NOW before the second quarter donation deadline tonight at midnight.  (Of course, they would gladly accept your money tomorrow, as well!

The game is to try and differentiate the e-mailer's begging from the other guy’s – and as soon as someone comes up with an original approach, others quickly copy the idea and make their own version.

This week Senator Al Franken (D, MN – and Saturday Night Live) cranked one out that was unlike anything I have received this election season.  Franken, or his campaign poet, sent out a sonnet asking for funds.  Good one, Al!

Franken - Clinton in 2016!

(Franni Franken, the senator’s wife, also sends out the occasional email, and hers are always a work of art.  My favorite is her Thanksgiving email containing favorite family recipes.)

Here is the Franken fundraising sonnet.    Enjoy – and if it leaves you itching to send money to the senator’s campaign, the snail mail address is:  Al Franken for Senate 2014, P.O. Box 583144, Minneapolis, MN  55458-3144.  And be sure to tell him that Pa Rock sent you!

Al Franken’s Fundraising Sonnet
by the Franken Campaign

This deadline coming up just ain’t a ruse
It’s crunch time with our foes on the attack
And with just days to go, you have to choose
Will sit idly by – or help fight back?

Our field program is fully underway
From Moorhead to Mankato to the Range
And yes, there’s more new email every day
And yes, as it gets late they’re getting strange
But right-wing groups want you to hit “delete”
They hope you’re cynical, they hope you’ll quit

Because they want to buy this Senate seat
And that is how they’ll get away with it
So if you think this sonnet’s lame, that’s true
But he, at lease it isn’t a haiku

Now, whip out those checkbooks!

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