Smokescreens, euphemisms, and esonotocas, The summer often 13

A few days before the election, President opponents accuse him of sexual abuse of a minor who was visiting the White House. The strategy to avoid the scandal is raising a smokescreen: invent a war with a country virtually unknown and not very important to most of the American people, Albania.

It sounds? Yes, This is the plot of the movie "Wag the dog” (Smokescreen) of 1997, Barry Levinson directed and written by David Mamet and Hilary Henkin.

This Hispanic political summer has surprised us with one of the biggest smokescreen known to our species: The drama of the rock. The story is very well orchestrated:

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Mission: Government prevent wear of accumulated cases of Barcenas, Gurtel and management crisis especially poorly resolved issues comunicativos-.

Strategy: Direct the attention of the Spaniards to another issue that will emotionally affect their patriotic sense. Create a threat to the interests of Spain.

Proposal: A conflict around the Rock of Gibraltar, British sovereignty under the Treaty of Utrecht (1713), a gift that made the Bourbons to the English Crown to invade Barcelona without too many casualties.

Background: In his day, Aznar managed to hang rojigualdas thousands of flags on balconies thanks to the defense of a stone called "Perejil" which had been occupied by hordes of Morocco. The unit of Spain was in danger. The action was successful at all levels, and he ended with a "take" island style "SWAT".

The perfect excuse. Spain's government needed a trigger, and I was fortunate to face when the 24 and 25 July this year, Rock authorities released water concrete blocks with the idea of ​​creating an artificial reef, putting obstacles to the fishermen of La Línea de la Concepción and Algeciras.

The execution: Two days later Spain exaggerated intensified customs control at the gate, which it caused huge queues of several hours that the Government justifies affirming that these records are their obligation, because the Rock is not part of the Schengen area and so UK and Gibraltar have strongly protested. As they say in Italy, "We made it" (and we Bundled).

The reaction: The communication manual began by page 1. The pro-government media (The reason, ABC, RTVE, Antena 3 ...) They gave the advance and warned of a new threat to the unity and sovereignty of Spain. Then the matter has occupied front pages nationwide, culminating an excellent and well-orchestrated communication strategy "Wag the Dog". It is true that not all means the same treatment given to the news, The Sixth and the world have remained faithful to the subject Barcenas, and perhaps also the "separatist" Catalan press.

Political communication cabinets typically work with three major formats to avoid attention on an issue. By order of effectiveness:

The smokescreen, already mentioned, It is the great tool:

  1. Is Matrix, a recreation of the real world to the world's people do not see the misery in which they live.
  2. en EEUU, the same day Monica Lewinsky He declared before the grand jury in the Supreme Court began bombing Afghanistan and Sudan .
  3. The Government of PSOE He was found 29 April 2011 with a devastating statistic 3 weeks of regional elections: the historical record 4.9 million unemployed. In this case, the Government did not create curtains of smoke but took advantage of the inertia of two important facts to shelter behind the curtain: the semifinal of the Champions between Madrid and Barcelona 27 April that captured all the headlines until next week, and the Royal Wedding between William and Kate 29 of April. Luck? Yes, but we must seize.
  4. In Catalonia, the right to decide, human chain for independence and Barca leave the page 2 of Google all the rough issues such as the case Millet, espionage cases following recordings in the restaurant "La Camargue", bicefalia of a PSC whose leader is constantly challenged by his fellow party ...

euphemistically, that old friend. Some examples:

  1. The "rivulets of fuel” Rajoy, when he was deputy prime minister, referring to ecological Prestige oil tanker disaster
  2. additional tax"By raising taxes
  3. outdoor mobility"By flight of young people abroad
  4. Loan"For ransom
  5. temporary slowdown” (ZP) by crises
  6. temporary cessation of cohabitation"Divorce (in the royal house)
  7. Ticket moderator sanitario"Per euro per prescription (Government)
  8. And Pearl: “exceptional measures to encourage the taxation of undeclared income"Tax amnesty

The "it does not touch", a tool booming. Examples:

  1. Perhaps the king of "esonotoca" was once Jordi Pujol, a master of evasion communicative. He did it with art, his "això not touch" always appeared when the president wanted to discuss the exhibition was inaugurated ago 2 minutes and the complex issue of domestic policy. Conversely, his successor, Artur Mas, He is an expert in the art of giving the face.
  2. Today we have the "President plasma”, Don Mariano, that has come to irritate the press with their constant non-appearances and installing custom TV (plasma) in an adjacent room for journalists (so do not bother with inconvenient questions)

Either way, Summers always find news context to help ease tensions of various governments. When summer brings a few fires, Few accidents in traffic and few drowned in the sea, political gale is secured. This summer 13 We remember him for that piece of stone (English call it "The Rock”) we call Gibraltar, a curtain of thick smoke.

About me Guillem Recolons

Convinced that everything leaves a mark, I help companies to better connect with their stakeholders through personal branding programs (personal brand management) and employee advocacy (internal brand ambassadors programs).

Partner at Integra Personal Branding and Soymimarca, I also collaborate with Ponte en Valor, Brandergizers,, MoreThanLaw, Noema Consulting, AdQualis and QUIFER Consultants.

As lecturer, participated in the Graduate Social Media of UPF and UVic, in various programs in ISDI, speaker at the IESE EMBA, among other. Advertising man, Master en Marketing. Grade student of Humanities.

My DNA comes from advertising 20 years in agencies: BBDO, J.W.T., Bassat Ogilvy, Saatchi & Saatchi, Altraforma and TVLowCost among others.

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