Where on Earth is G.W’s spin team?

I’m a little bit lefty, It comes with the Sociology thing, but I have to admit I’ve been feeling pretty sorry for President G.W. Bush recently. First there was G20 when he stared at the ground and looked like a lonely school boy while everyone else made nice.















Now incredulous Iraqis are throwing their shoes at him on his Iraq victory lap.

The shoe thing doesn’t make me feel sorry for him but the fact that it ruined his victory lap does, because it didn’t have to. It could and should have been a chance to show why we are in Iraq at all.

In 2002 Muntader Al-Zaidi could never have slighted an allied leader in nearly as extreme a way as he did towards Bush. He would have been arrested, beaten and I can scarcely imagine what else.

So the moment Bush stepped off the stage after the incident why wasn’t somebody telling the President to point out how this man had just highlighted the freedom of speech hard won by the coalition presence he had put in Iraq. After that why didn’t someone specifically ensure that Al-Zaidi was treated impeccably and set free as rapidly as possible?

As it is Bush left the stage and joked “All I can report is it was a size 10” then said he wasn’t insulted by the incident. Al Zaidi meanwhile was arrested and is still being held (he’s become a national hero and a symbol of Iraqi distaste for U.S occupation). Meanwhile his brother has mounted a campaign to show the world how cruel Iraqi authorities still are with claims Al-Zaidi is being beaten and is suffering serious injury.

I’m pretty green as far as politics and spin goes but from where I’m standing Bush is facing a string of events which are very damning to his image and there is little his comms team is doing about it. This latest incident served to turn a reassuring last visit to Bush’s biggest legacy

into farce.


The YouTube Symphony Orchestra

I’m a big fan of YouTube’s new campaign in which they are putting together an orchestra to play at Carnegie Hall and just wanted to point it out because YouTube are effectively crowd sourcing an orchestra.

On a practical level it’s an incredibly simple idea (upload sheet music, offer big prize, count the entrants) with massive reach and an almost guaranteed high level of take up.

On top of that it’s pretty damn exciting: For me, as a guitarist more notable for my tenacity than talent, the campaign is absolute wish fulfillment yet doesn’t feel that unattainable; the music is written for me, I get a master class with the London symphony orchestra, all I have to do is upload a video.

Like any other crowd-sourced idea they are going to get people coming at the music from every angle and I think are probably going to come up with a very different piece of music from the same piece performed by the London Symphony Orchestra.

21cmedia who seem to be running the campaign to PR their roster of classical music clients have taken a pretty typical social media idea and turned it into a brilliant campaign.

A Symphony for Youtube