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February 13, 2006

"Republicans Buy Shoes Too"

There's an apocryphal story that goes like so:

Michael Jordan had just been drafted into the NBA; everyone knew he would be a big player. He had signed a shoe endorsement contract with Nike.

Strom Thurmond, the deeply reactionary Senator from South Carolina was up for reelection. Jordan grew up and went to school in neighboring North Carolina.

A reporter asked Jordan why he didn't use his fame and speak out for Thurmond's opponent, whose politics were more in line with Jordan's. Mike replied:

"Republicans buy shoes too."

He didn't want to lose fans because of his taking controversial issues public.

The moral of the story is that you alienate customers by expressing partisan sentiment versus being demure.

Posted by gsmith at February 13, 2006 10:50 AM


I'm not sure if your point is that peopled "express partisan sentiment". If it is one can easily see how this line of reasoning can lead to the rise of a leader like Hitler. Hitler buys shoes too.

Posted by: jay at February 14, 2006 03:51 AM