The Republicans Continue to Astonish
It was the late, great copywriter Bill Jayme who said, “In the marketplace as in theater, there is indeed a factor at work called ‘the willing suspension of disbelief.’” The writers of these virtually identical efforts turn their noses up at the idea. Get this from Bush-Cheney ‘04: “Victory for the Bush-Cheney campaign depends directly on friends like you.”
With $150 million in the till, that is absolute, total BS. One thing fundraisers should remember: If it generally is known that you have a ton of money, your appeals have to be a lot more inventive. An example of what I’m talking about is the “Stewardship Guidelines” literature of Father Flanagan’s Boys Town — now titled the politically correct Girls and Boys Town — which has so huge an endowment (nearly $1 billion) that it never again needs to collect so much as one thin dime in order to survive and prosper. Here’s how the Omaha orphanage sweet talks donors:
- “Every dollar you contribute is spent on the care of youth, right away. This is possible because all costs of solicitation are paid for by the trust fund started by Father Flanagan himself.”
- “We do not sell your name to anyone. No donor information is shared outside the organization. If you want to be removed from our list, write, call or e-mail us.”
- “We provide the best care in America to our children. See our outcomes information on the Web, or e-mail or phone us for a copy.”
- “Our fundraising staff follows the Code of Ethical Principles of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.”
Even though Girls and Boys Town is richer than Croessus, a donor can feel good knowing that every penny contributed goes to the care of the children.
And a footnote
The Bush-Cheney ‘04 mailing contains a “handwritten” footnote that was not used on the Republican National Committee effort from which it stole.