Friday, October 09, 2009

Swiss Political Advertising Part 2

Ok, I was going to post about something else today, but then I saw this. Anyone else see a problem with this ad? These posters, a campaign to prevent the construction of minarets in Switzerland, can be found around the country. In a breath of fresh air, both the cities of Basel and Lausanne are actually trying to stop them from running. Personally, I still can't believe how outwardly racist some Swiss organizations can be.

If you're interested in reading more, there's an article on CNN (thanks Mrs Mac).


mrsmac said...

LOL Brian and I were just talking about this last night after I stumbled upon an article on CNN.

Chantal said...

Thanks for the link. Crazy Switzerland in the news again. Like the black sheep posters weren't enough...

Kathy said...

As far as I know, Switzerland has nothing like the problems that France is facing (large Muslim underclass, recent history of violent colonial struggles, etc.). Why try to create a race problem in CH? If you try hard enough, be sure you can create one.

As an American, this kind of bigoted political grandstanding is all too familiar, and it's really depressing to see here.

We just got through (or have just started to emerge from) a period of heightened racism and reactionary feelings towards Muslims in the US. It's cost us a lot and it's not over.

Pretty sure there's a which-side-of the-bread-is-buttered question here too, what with all the international banking and other international agencies in CH.

Chantal said...

Kathy, I totally agree with you. I don't understand why Switzerland is going asking for problems. Because you're right, they will come if they ask for them. And you're right, so many of the Swiss banks have to be supported with money from the Muslim part of the world. I just don't understand the Swiss sometimes. Yes, they've gotten their point across on the world stage now, but is it really a good point to make internationally? As Americans, we all know consequences of racism all too well.

Greg Christensen said...

Chantal, I just finished downloading this pics to post on my blog. You beat me to it!

Chantal said...

Sorry :)

I guess we're on the same wavelength as advertising writers...

Hattie said...

I wouldn't vote for some bald guy. At least not a bald guy as dull as that one seems to be!

Hattie said...

Should I say, I wouldn't vote for some guy just because he is bald!

Amy McCown said...

Thanks for posting that. We just moved from CH and my husband I were just talking last night about those horrible black crow adds from last winter. This is takes the cake for being the most offensive yet.

M'dame Jo said...

(Firefox bugged and erased my long long comment... Sniff)

What I was saying is more or less this:

If this wasn't doing us bad publicity, it would be a kind of a sport. It became huge and reported internationally since the sheep, but it's been going on for years.
Every season, they come up with a simplistic and offensive add. Some cities forbid it because they obviously violate anti-racism laws, some don't because of a so called freedom of speech, then we vote and forget about this particular campaign until the next one. At least it was before Switzerland's wrist got slapped by the UN.

The selling topic is immigration and foreigners, especially since Schengen, and it obviously works.
This campaign was... hem... I got no words

But they are also the party that want to send all working women home, making daycare and maternity leave unnecessary This would also solve the unemployment issue, of course, and save the society of decadence, naturally.

They also had a pretty "creative" add to refuse facilitated naturalization for 2nd and 3rd (!) generations of migrants

Also, a very evolved view of the drug problem in Lausanne

And unfortunately, I cannot find the one that I think is the "best". It's quite old, it represents a swiss flag that is torn by a mean foreigner - depicted as from middle east, I think - tearing the flag apart passing through it. I think wearing a machine gun, I'm not quite sure.

And a few years back, they published a video depicting hell (with flames and all, yes), that is the cities with violence, foreigners, etc. And heaven, mountain, banker, happy kids mountain biking, FA-18, it was ridiculous. The best part was that a guy dubbed it and added comments to the images, with a thick swiss accent, quite risky, really not PC, extremely funny and totally destroying the video.
But it strangely disappeared from the web. And back then, it wasn't possible to download the video from youtube, so so sad.

Anyways, I guess my point is that it's getting old... They know it's going to make everyone talk about them, that what they want.. and get.

M'dame Jo said...

Actually, the video was a huge scandal. They apparently tricked a few teenagers telling then they were making a video against violence and they ended up in their video as an illustration of how unsafe and violent cities are... So the video got forbidden. And I guess so was the doubled version.

Chantal said...

Wow, thanks for all that great info, M'dame Jo. I realize that their tactic is to get everyone on earth to talk about their scandalous ads, and while I'm usually in favor of this smart kind of publicity, I think in this case, it may be damaging Switzerland's reputation on a world scale. And if that's what some Swiss politicians want to do to get their way, I guess that's their choice. But as a foreigner living in Switzerland, I find these ads deeply offensive.

M'dame Jo said...

Yes, I'm well aware of both their offensive nature and that they're damaging our reputation. I guess that with years, I've come to considering this as a periodic proof of the deep close-mindness and stupidity of a quite high percentage of the population. It would be way less mortifying if this wasn't getting out of our borders... But what do to? Forbid? They'll turn it to their advantage. Ignore? It makes the rest of the population appear as submissive and coward. Honestly, I don't really know.

At least, it forces the discussion, hopefully makes politics more interesting to youth, and it encourages me not to forget to vote... and maybe I'm not the only one.

M'dame Jo said...

PS: and your title actually reflects the way it is seen from the outside. It's not really "Swiss political advertising", it's more "Swiss extreme right party advertising."

While I do agree that the percentage of the population that is behind them is scarily high, there's still 75% that isn't and that seems forgotten. Of course, it doesn't sell as well and doesn't make catchy titles. As opposed to generalizations.

That's why we managed to vote yes to Schengen and its extension to the Eastern Europe countries. To get a paid maternity leave. To get a same sex couple partnership contract on the federal level, etc. Most Swiss people are still pragmatic and moderate.

Plus it is always weird to me how this party has the most voices in kantons that are mostly free of immigration and insecurity...

Chantal said...

I totally separate normal Swiss citizens from their politicians. As I hope most Swiss do of American foreigners.

Chantal said...

"You must have lived in Switzerland for awhile now," a Swiss guy said to me a couple of years ago.

"Why?" I asked.

"Because you're not fat anymore," he said.

Clearly, as an American, I must have been fat in a former life.

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