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#PRFail: 'We the People' Sticks It to the People
By: Shawn Paul Wood
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Just when you thought the U.S. Government would finally realize that a record-low approval rating of nine percent may be worth improving comes the White House's concoction of "giving American what it wants" —  a voice. Only there was a catch. The U.S. Government would like to hear your voice when they pretty much feel like it. Namely when it concerns one Justin Bieber. (Yeah, you knew this was going to be good.) 

The Obama Administration created two-way conversation between the American public and the government by embracing social media. It has been a lovely success for the White House and its communications department, so someone in a nice office decided to up the ante a skosh with the "We the People" concept. In fact, the slogan emblazoned across the fancy header says, "Your voice in our government." The idea of this website was to "give all Americans a way to engage their government on the issues that matter to them." A good idea, since addressing your representative really doesn't amount to more than asking Rush Limbaugh or Bill Maher for an impartial political view on anything. 

And so, when you give "the people" the right to do anything, there's always going to be one colossal turd that has to stink it up for everyone — and that person created a petition to deport "The Biebs" smooth out of the US of A. Now, according to "We the People," if you get enough signatures on your petition, the White House "will issue a response." The petition needed 100,000 signatures to kick his tail out of the country and it received 273,968. In six weeks. To their word, the Administration was beholden to issue a comment, and it did: 

"No comment." In fact, they literally said the following, as noted in the Washington Post: 

So we'll leave it to others to comment on Mr. Bieber's case, but we're glad you care about immigration issues. Because our current system is broken. Too many employers game the system by hiring undocumented workers and 11 million people are living in the shadows.

Whatever that was supposed to mean, the underlying definition to that non-comment comment was, "Uh, we got busted. You called us on it. And we really don't care what you think. To prove it, you can keep Justin Bieber in the news. We watch CNN anyway." 

Buck. Passed. 


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About the Author
Shawn Paul Wood is a hack-turned-flack with more than 20 years of collective journalism, copywriting and marketing communications experience. Shawn Paul is founder of Woodworks Communications in Dallas, Texas. If you need him, ping him here or follow him on Twitter @ShawnPaulWood
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