Douchenozzles And Dumbasses Impaled Upon Parker’s Pike

“Dumb it down, Burn!”
I haven’t heard these words in a while, but I used to hear them regularly. Chances are you’ve heard them to, in all the various forms such defeatism takes.
In the foreword to George Parker’s new book, The Ubiquitous Persuaders, Jeff Goodby shares his thoughts on the practice.

Dumbing down is treating people like less intelligent sheep to be manipulated. It presumes they won’t notice ham-fisted logic, irritating repetition, or the vulgar appropriation of culture and symbols dear to them. It blithely assumes that they don’t know the difference between funny enough and truly funny, between beautiful enough and truly beautiful.
George relishes the public flaying of the dumbing down forces. He has taken up a pike herein and is climbing over the crowd to finish the job. He knows that advertising may be a business that now turns out only one per cent goodness, but that letting the world devolve into dreary mercantilism and mere information gathering would be a sad fate for all of us. Because when advertising is done right, it changes commerce into magic, humor, even delight.

Stay tuned…I’m working on another post about the book and its author.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.