[POSTED: JUNE 6, 2012]
It can be hard to tell in an election year, but life isn’t all about politics. In fact, life is very rarely about politics. Throughout this year, we’ll be asking for examples of the everyday things people will do the day after Election Day, on Wednesday morning, regardless of who wins.
We suspect that listening to people’s Wednesday morning routines will go further in identifying what issues Americans are really thinking about – beyond the rhetoric of candidates, campaigns and advertisements.
Here’s what some people in Wisconsin – some of the same people lamenting the incivility and vitriol in their communities leading up to yesterday’s election – are doing on this Wednesday morning.
Elizabeth Kay of Eau Claire:
I will be sending my youngest kid off to his last day of middle school, and my oldest to his last day of his Junior year in high school.
Roy Stacey of Rockland:
I’ll get up, have my coffee, go into the garage for my morning cigarette, turn on the radio, and will not be able to avoid the election coverage! At least the damn ads and robo-calls will have ceased. Retirement can be trying at times like this.
[POSTED: JUNE 5, 2012]
Wisconsin residents are voting today on whether to remove Gov. Scott Walker, the state’s lieutenant governor and three Republican state senators from office. We asked Wisconsinites of all political stripes about the long-term effects the recall process will have on Wisconsin’s identity. Here’s how Public Insight Network sources are describing the atmosphere there.
Mike Kessler of St. Croix Falls:
It’s terrible here in Wisconsin. Family, friends, and neighbors are divided to the point where no discussion - of any type - is happening. It’s a bit unnerving in that one can see how a civil conflict can start. We eye each other with a combination of distrust and cynicism asking the silent question: “How can you possibly be for the ‘other’ candidate?”
"If you want to find real American heroes, find them in communities that are still fighting for the American dream."
Newark, N.J., mayor Cory Booker, speaking with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. on the PBS program "Finding Your Roots." Booker, who grew up in a middle-class family, lived for eight years in Newark’s Brick Towers, an infamous housing complex that was demolished in 2006.
Tell us where you find YOUR American heroes.
By Jeff Jones (2.7.2012)
Two minutes of sobriety may have been the real surprise winner on a Super Bowl Sunday that was otherwise exactly what we have come to expect: a glitzy half-time show and lots of silly, cheeky ads. Then, just as the nation settled in for an exciting second half of football, it suddenly paused and held its collective breath.
If you haven’t seen the “Halftime in America” ad from Chrysler (aka the Clint Eastwood ad), take a moment to watch it below. It’s been the most talked-about commercial of the game. But most of the Monday morning quarterbacking has focused on unraveling some hidden political agenda.
My interest is different. Unlike most Super Bowl commercials, this one seemed to try to capture a particular moment in America – something we’ve been calling “the American now.” But does it succeed? And if so, why? I put those questions to 40 sources from the Public Insight Network who list “advertising” as an expertise. Here’s some of what we heard…