Saturday, May 22, 2010

Do Not Reuse


On June 8, Maine voters will narrow down the field of 6,391 irrelevant candidates for governor to two irrelevant candidates for governor.

I have to admit - I paid almost no attention to this election until I noticed the words "Do Not Reuse" on the side of a bottle of apple juice.

Initially, this burned my briefs. Why can't I reuse a plastic bottle? Is it because the bottling company wants me to buy new beverages instead of refilling from my tap?

Then I wandered onto the Internet and discovered all this talk about toxic chemicals leeching into liquids over time as the plastic ages. While some of the anonymous message board experts said the quantities were too small to worry about, others said "better safe than sorry."

So "Do Not Reuse" started to make sense to me. Then I realized that it would make a fantastic campaign slogan for Les Otten, Republican candidate for governor, who pledges to create jobs.

Think about it. Otten's campaign has been accused of plagiarism over and over again, starting with an Obama-inspired campaign logo, and culminating in a written interview response lifted from the Maine Heritage Policy Center, published at

No question about it: Otten's thriftiness has leeched toxic chemicals into his electability.

What better way to convince the electorate that you've learned your lesson than to remind them in your ads: "Do Not Reuse"?

As slogans go, it certainly beats the rest of the field, starting with Peter Mills's "It's Time."

What, exactly, is it time for, Peter? Lower taxes? A governor with hair? Ritual sacrifices of the elderly on Cadillac Mountain?

How bad is "It's Time?" Mills, who pledges to create jobs, has it on all his signs, but he won't use it in his TV ads, which instead feature the scintillating line, "I'm Republican Peter Mills, and I'm asking for your vote this June 8."

Oooh, zing! 

Steve Abbott checks in with "A Governor for All of Maine." Abbott, who pledges to create jobs, does not specify which parts of Maine his opponents would choose not to govern, but wherever that might be, I'm not sure the people there would consider it such a bad thing.

On the Democratic side, Steve Rowe can't seem to decide on one slogan. His website features four, including (my favorite), "Please make a contribution." 

By the way: Rowe would like to see to it that we get some jobs created.

Rosa Scarcelli offers the simple "Rosa For Maine." I like it. Then again, I have a little crush on Rosa Scarcelli, so it's possible I would like her even if she promised to nominate a pigeon for education commissioner (still an improvement, you have to admit). 

What can I say? I'm an average voter. I'd like Rosa to come create some jobs in my neck of the woods, if you know what I mean, so she'll probably get my vote.

Libby Mitchell: "She gets things done." Yeah, like presiding over epic ineptitude in both houses of the legislature. 

Is she prioritizing jobs? Do you really have to ask?

With all the originality and fresh ideas pulsing through this election already, you have to admit, "Do Not Reuse" would work as well as anything.

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