Saturday, February 23, 2008

Marketing Targeted (Very) Badly

I don't like junk mail, solicitations for money, catalogs full of crap I wouldn't dream of owning, and department store flyers with perfume samples. Accckkkk!

Quite a bit of that stuff comes to kona ranch and immediately goes into the trash.

And given the fact that I am about 6 months in default on a number of credit cards saddled with ex-business debt, you can imagine I get lots of lively letters in the mail from salivating collection agencies every week.

It's a rare day when I find something in the mail to excite me enough to blog about it. Lo and behold, today is the day.

Now, I'll admit, I wasn't exactly excited at the prospect of opening this envelope from the County Sheriff. Christ, that makes the anxiety of a root canal pale in comparison.

But here we go:

Dear konagod:

I am writing to you because I believe you are a law-abiding citizen who has worked hard for what you have. I also believe you are tired of people who turn to crime as an easy way to make a living with little responsibility to society.

Right off the bat, we have a problem. Up until just a few years ago, I would have been guilty in the great state of Texas of a felony for being caught in bed with my partner while rubbing our winky-dinks together. So whether I'm a law-abiding citizen is up for debate.

Next paragraph, please:
Almost every day you and I see or hear of the violence and criminal activities of crooks, thieves, rapists, drug pushers, and murderers.


The Sheriffs of Texas want to see tougher laws for criminals, more meaningful prison sentences, [yadda yadda yadda...], but we need your help.

Drug pushers: "If you don't buy this fucking pot right now I'm gonna blow your fuckin' brains out."

Where are those pushers? (And why can't I find one?) And what if they really don't need to push... at all. What if I am perfectly willing to buy some pot in a very cordial business exchange? Hey, good for the economy! Potmeister gets $500 for an ounce of premium weed. He or she goes out and buys goods and services, thus stimulating the economy. konagod gets some good weed, stays home de-stimulating the economy, laughing his ass off at bad tv, and writing an occasionally stupid blog post. It's all the same in the end. Whether I'm spending the $500, or the "dope pusher" is spending it, the end result is the same. The economy gets stimulated and that's a damn good thing. And if the issue is the pot seller evading taxes, then legalize it! City dwellers will still buy it, the pot sellers can pay taxes to fund the local Sheriff's department in their pursuit of real crime, and those of us living on a little piece of land can grow our own if we so desire, in much the same way I grow my own collard greens, basil and cilantro, thus circumventing a for-profit visit to my local supermarket. But I digress.

I really don't mean to make light of this. I know there are serious problems in this country with manufactured drugs (legal and illegal). But we know where the Sheriffs of Texas are probably going to focus their attention. And why on earth would my unemployed pot-loving ass send money to help the sheriffs in their quest to round up the very guy or gal who might be my next source of entertainment?

And I simply love how they lump business people in a supply and demand situation (is anything more American than that?)with all kinds of other lowly contemptible thugs.

In another paragraph they attempt to appeal to my passions by focusing on their need for funding to improve child safety, stopping family violence, and sexual assaults against both women and children. Oh, and drugs. And the arrest and prosecution of drug traffickers.

Again, I'll say there are indeed some very nasty drugs out there. But only a fool would refuse to believe the vast majority of people involved in this clean-up would be marijuana users and sellers. And my dear friends, the last time I checked, marijuana was a plant that grows from a seed, not cooked up in a meth kitchen with diet aids, paint thinner, and freon, among a list of many unhealthy substances.

So with all due respect to the Sheriff of my County, I will not contribute $25 to your cause. And I'm a little concerned about why you are needing to raise money via a direct mail campaign. And I'm very concerned about why you'd think I'd rather throw my money at you so you could further suppress my right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Maybe, just maybe, if you dropped all the wasted resources you pour in the direction of marijuana control, you might actually be able to make a dent in the other heinous crimes without even asking the tax-paying public for more financial support. Just a fucking thought from a worthless and stupid pothead who loves to be equated with scum of the earth murderers and rapists. And as far as crooks are concerned, you might well have a look within.

I wonder if Willie Nelson got one of these solicitations, and if he finds it as humorous as I do.

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