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What’s An APR Worth? Not Much.

April 2, 2013

Accountants have their CPA designation.  Lawyers have their JD.  What do public relations practitioners have?

If you were to ask that question to just about anyone outside of the public relations profession, you’d get silence for an answer.  Really, does anyone who is not in the profession know what an APR is?  And does anyone really care?

When Should You Use An Exclamation Point? Almost Never!!!!

April 1, 2013

“An exclamation point is like laughing at your own joke.”

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Remove the exclamation point from the keypad, and the volume of e-mail and text will drop by half, as fingertips around the world are struck dumb.

Exclamation points today are so ubiquitous, we hardly notice them.  They’re everywhere, like pickets on the fence of prose.

Proposals: Just Say “No”

March 28, 2013

Have you ever spent hours writing a proposal, submitted it to a client, then never heard back?

I have, especially recently, and so have associates I’ve spoken with.  We may initially get a response or two by phone or e-mail saying that no decision has been made yet, but then nothing.  The prospect moves on without telling us what, if anything, has been decided.

Is this happening in your business?

Reporter Asks Obama Tough Question!

March 21, 2013

When a reporter asks President Obama a tough question, it’s news in a “man-bites-dog” kind of way, as it happens so infrequently.  So, in the interest of spreading the news, below is an exchange between NBC’s Chuck Todd and the Leader of the Free World.

Note the classic non-answer.  I’ve included what President Obama said, but added what he was likely thinking.

Stop the Slaughter of Innocent Bugs. Send Your Check Today!

March 20, 2013

Every year, they’re exterminated by the millions.  As you read this, they are being eradicated with poisonous gases, crushed and wiped out.

Yet many Americans stand by and not only tolerate this mass murder, but cheer it on or participate in it.

I’m talking about bugs, of course.  Mosquitoes, flies, beetles, gypsy moths, termites, locusts, hornets, wasps, fire ants, fleas, ticks, bedbugs, cockroaches, earwigs and other species that get no respect.  Where is our compassion?

The Keynesian Subtractor

March 19, 2013

Government leaders once believed that the earth was flat and that it was at the center of the universe.  Today, they believe in Keynesian economics.

As in the past, neither logic nor evidence that their beliefs are wrong can sway them to change.  And why would it?  Keynesians believe in government spending.  Government spending increases the power of those who are doing the spending.  But does anyone really think it helps the economy?

What’s Another $1,000,000,000,000?

March 15, 2013

It’s not easy to spend $1 trillion – unless you’re a member of Congress or President Obama.

In the U.S. Senate’s first budget in four years, Budget Chair Patty Murray would, among other things, cancel the sequestration cuts and rewrite spending caps to allow another $1 trillion in spending.

The federal government spent $3.6 trillion in fiscal year 2012 and the federal debt is now $16.5 trillion and growing by the day, so what’s another $1,000,000,000,000?

Saving Daylight

March 14, 2013

The challenge of waking up has been particularly acute this week.

It seems as though Daylight Saving Time has come especially early this year.  This blogger’s aging body has registered a protest by refusing to function at anything close to its usual speed.

Presumably, productivity has been affected not only at Kowal Communications, but throughout corporate America, as well as in other countries that follow this barbaric ritual of welcoming spring by moving clocks forward an hour.

BLS Unemployment Stats Are Not Working

March 13, 2013

As people give up looking for work, the unemployment rate goes down.

Only in the federal government would that make sense.  Yet the official unemployment rate is reported faithfully by most journalists with little analysis.

Not surprisingly, it was reported as good news last week when the Labor Department announced that the economy created 236,000 new jobs in February, bringing the unemployment rate down to 7.7% -- its lowest level since President Obama took office.

My Life as a Ghost

March 12, 2013

When I made the transition from journalism to public relations, it was a revelation to find out I could be paid a lot more for putting someone’s name other than my own on the articles I wrote.

It’s a peculiar way to make a living.  Yet there are thousands of ghosts walking the halls of corporate America.