January 26, 2007

Baby Einsteins and the war

Filed under: Uncategorized — ubikcan @ 9:08 pm

I’d never heard of Baby Einsteins until today, but then driving home from work I heard this remarkable commentary on NPR’s Marketplace:

Baby Einstein has a lot in common with the Bush administration. Both specialize in brilliantly crafted, hugely successful, false and deceptive marketing. Both exploit fear as a tool for marketing. Both rely on building a passive and accepting media audience.

Wow, what? This is on Marketplace? Yes:

Preying on parental fears about children’s development, Baby Einstein brought in over $200 million to Disney in 2005 through unsubstantiated claims that its videos were educational for babies, and by hyping a link that doesn’t exist between its brand and learning.

The most horrifying example of the Bush administration’s deceptive marketing and manipulation of fear is the war in Iraq — sold to us through unsubstantiated claims of weapons of mass destruction and by hyping a link that didn’t exist between Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden.

If skepticism this strong about the war can make it on to NPR’s show about all things money, then the debate is over.


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