« Towards Better Book Reviews | Main | Hmmmm ... »

October 21, 2007

Dowd on Microtrends

Wipe out the psychosexual speculation on the "true" nature of Bill and Hillary Clinton's marriage from Maureen Dowd's latest, and what you're left with is a pretty good column on the absurdity of Mark Penn's Microtrends. "The chapters all read like reports that Mr. Penn wrote for clients," writes Dowd. "Whether or not they’re trends, they’re certainly micro — marketing studies gussied up as social science. As with Malcolm Gladwell’s 'The Tipping Point,' this book is less social philosophy than a fancy way to sell stuff."

The book is weird that way. The Microtrends really aren't about anything -- they don't fit into some overarching vision of American life, they don't help us explain our neighbors or better understand our world. Maybe they suggest niche markets for new products, but that's the sort of information that's best sold to companies, not released in hardcover. My eventual best guess was that the book exists not so much to sell "stuff" as to sell Mark Penn. After all, if only he can divine these emergent constituencies, then only those who hire him will be able to access their bounty. But I'm not even confident in that conclusion. Maybe he just got a flattering call from an agent and a big advance and signed up to do a book without really having a topic or the time, and so took the easy way out.

That said, I wouldn't use Microtrends as a way to understand the Clinton candidacy, which is really putting its focus on macro-issues (health care reform, Iraq) rather than micro-initiatives. I even like this "trapdoor" frame the campaign is current pushing:



Micro that ain't.

October 21, 2007 | Permalink

Comments

I don't know, I think "Impressionable Elites" is pretty much the story since 2000, it's a big big part of understanding America today.

Posted by: Meh | Oct 21, 2007 4:27:52 PM

Wow, you managed to actually find something interesting in a MoDo column? Impressive.

Posted by: Glenn | Oct 21, 2007 4:48:59 PM

I would bet that Sally Bedell Smith is either a buddy of MoDo's or MoDo owes her one.
That whole column was an excuse to get in a plug for Smith's book.
Plus another chance to snipe at Bill and Hilary. A chance MoDo never, ever misses.

Posted by: flory | Oct 21, 2007 5:10:14 PM

please visit
www.gabrielchristou.blogspot.com

you will see PHOTOS of WHO and WHERE Bin Laden and his NETWORKS ARE….

URGENT ... PLEASE HELP.. I CANNOT FROM HERE ... I AM BLOCKED ALL AROUND.

PLEASE FORWARD THIS INFORMATION TO THE FBI


Posted by: gabriel christou | Oct 21, 2007 5:33:52 PM

Whew! Unscheduled shower time after MoDo. She and Chris Matthews should consider a joint TV program for regular sniffing of Bill's nuts and looking for Hillary's.

Did anyone else notice of her word/title invention: commandress-in-chief? Doesn't Modo like the word dominatrix?

I'm trying to warm to Hillary since she's starting to look inevitable - and the TV add linked here is quite good. But the only candidate with worse advisors close to her is Guliani, and Hillary's come off as weird rather than dangerous.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Oct 21, 2007 6:04:02 PM

I think Mark Penn's role as "advisor" is somewhat overplayed as a way to try to put his baggage on Clinton. I'm sure he offers advice, but so do a lot of other folks. Neither Clinton really needs Penn or anyone else to tell them the political meaning of poll results, it seems they are both quite capable of that. What they need is someone who can parse the results a million ways and Penn is appears to be excellent at that, which is why I think he's there. He's a pollster first, advisor second.

Posted by: BDB | Oct 21, 2007 6:24:15 PM

"Maybe he just got a flattering call from an agent and a big advance and signed up to do a book without really having a topic or the time, and so took the easy way out."

Then Mark Penn and Maureen Dowd have something in common.

Posted by: Kazumatan | Oct 21, 2007 7:39:20 PM

Mark Penn isn't just an adviser, his title is "chief strategist."

Posted by: Ezra | Oct 21, 2007 7:54:57 PM

That said, I wouldn't use Microtrends as a way to understand the Clinton candidacy, which is really putting its focus on macro-issues (health care reform, Iraq) rather than micro-initiatives.

What are you talking about? Hillary's all about micro-initiatiaves, just like her husband, Bill School Uniforms and Midnight Basketball Clinton was. Why, just the other day, she floated a proposal for "baby bonds". That's pretty micro.

And indeed, her approaches to health care and Iraq are not macro at all. On health care, she's not proposing any big reform at all-- she is just going to throw us in jail if we don't spend money we don't have to buy health insurance. Big reform requires taking on the insurance companies who waste our health care dollars, and she won't do that.

Similarly, she has made clear her intention to stay in Iraq forever. That's no reform. It's the same policy as the incumbent, and the Republicans, offer.

The whole purpose of the Clinton candidacy seems to be to take this moment when Democrats could actually do something and make sure we squander it, because otherwise her friends in big business and the pro-imperialism portion of the foreign policy community would be offended.

Posted by: Dilan Esper | Oct 21, 2007 11:09:50 PM

托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
木制托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
钢托盘
木托盘
钢制托盘
托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
南京托盘
南京钢托盘
上海托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
南京托盘
南京钢托盘
上海托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
纸托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘
杭州托盘
成都托盘
武汉托盘
长沙托盘
合肥托盘
苏州托盘
无锡托盘
昆山托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
纸托盘
南京托盘
南京钢制托盘
南京钢托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘

托盘
托盘
托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
塑料托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
塑料托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘
托盘
托盘
托盘
钢托盘
铁托盘
钢制托盘
塑料托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
木制托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
木制托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹板托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
木制托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
木托盘
塑料托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹板托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘

托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
木制托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘
托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
铁托盘
塑料托盘
木托盘
纸托盘
木塑托盘
柱式托盘
波纹板托盘
镀锌托盘
南京托盘
上海托盘
北京托盘
广州托盘


托盘
钢托盘
钢制托盘
托盘
塑料托盘

Posted by: peterwei | Oct 21, 2007 11:14:00 PM

Sally Bedell Smith was on Meet The Press this weekend flogging her book. Coincidentally, Stephen Colbert was on too. Dowd to Russert must be a standard double play. Based on Google hits Colbert is way more popular than Penn.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | Oct 23, 2007 8:17:27 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.