I had three television shows Wednesday night I just could not miss. The season finale of Arrow (which, if you're a comic book nerd and haven't seen it, you're missing out), Law and Order: SVU and Psych. Judge my taste in shows all you want, but it's somewhat irrelevant.
All that was over at 10 p.m. central standard time. I began writing this post at 10:41 p.m. central standard time. That is a 41-minute gap I am about to explain to you and why the little experiment I ran only shows we're lagging behind. I took a brief trip first through YouTube. It didn't take long to find what I was looking for. For variety, I typed in "CNN IRS scandal" in one tab and "Fox News IRS scandal" in another tab. Then, I opened up a sound recording software I have that I did legally purchase for the sake of a side job I have doing recorded newscasts via the Internet.
I went to my settings and changed the recording device to Stereo Mix, which means whatever I play on the computer is what gets recorded. I loaded up news clips of anchors, Jay Carney and Barack Obama. I recorded them individually in separate files. Then, reverting the settings back to my cheap microphone, I recorded myself reciting various phrases like "And these are the guys you want running our health care system?" You get the idea.
The final step was some music to set the mood. I simply used Garage Band on my iPad, used the pre-set melodies on the acoustic guitar to give a solemn air to what I was about to do.
Opening up a different program that allows me to put multiple tracks into an audio project, I inserted the music in first (I uploaded it to SoundCloud from my iPad, then downloaded it). It ran longer than I intended, so I chopped it off at about 30 seconds. Next, I inserted the briefest clips of reporters talking about the IRS scandal we've all come to know and love. Then, the final step was my voice, which I really don't like listening to, but for the sake of the experiment, I had to do it.
That first commercial was a thirty-minute process, and most of that was spent on YouTube. The second commercial was Carney and Obama, followed up with my dulcet tones again. A much shorter process, given I'd already recorded everything.
Keep in mind, I am no professional. It used to be my job to do this, but I had a sound board and everything. Now, I just have a microphone, some nice headphones and my computer. I came up with two radio commercials in 40 minutes.
Since the scandal erupted, several conservatives watched all of this information come to light and scratched their chins, thinking "...And these are the guys we have set to run our healthcare system?" But, look on TV and listen to your radios. Nothing. This is an ad campaign that's fallen into our laps. Why on earth haven't we taken advantage?
I'm a dude sitting at a computer who will post this and then go read Sherlock Holmes stories, and I did it easily. There are people who do this for a living who have done nothing. And we wonder why it is we fall behind. There are people out there who probably think "We shouldn't make this political. We don't want to send the wrong messenger."
But, you can't shoot the messenger if he doesn't show up in the first place. And you don't know who might end up listening to him, either, right?