The Hill: Put Rush Limbaugh on Apple’s board of directors; he could sell tons of Macs

“This week, Apple Computer is launching a campaign to sell a new product, the $499 Mac Mini, that portends to transform the world in a way the original Mac didn’t. But Republicans will be needed for the campaign to succeed,” David Hill writes for The Hill. “To research this column, I read lots of discussion boards all across the Internet, and it’s evident that politics still play a role in computer purchases. Just as there are red states and blue states, there are also Mac Democrats and PC Republicans. These battles were especially nasty after Apple went public with its politics and added Al Gore to its board of directors.”

Hill writes, “Apple’s leader, Steve Jobs, seems to have sensed last year that his company was getting too ‘political.’ He backed off some of his campaigning for John Kerry and cryptically signaled to The Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg in an interview that he understands the problem. ‘People have said that I shouldn’t get involved politically because probably half our customers are Republicans — maybe a little less … [but] I do point out that there are more Democrats than Mac users so I’m going to just stay away from all that political stuff because that was just a personal thing,’ Jobs said.”

“There are, in fact, devoted Republican Macintosh users, but that is not the perception. So Apple desperately needs to introduce a replacement image to achieve the original Mac’s vision. There would be no better way to do this than to add a Republican or two to Apple’s board of directors. Mac users such as Karl Rove or Arnold Schwarzenegger adviser Mike Murphy would be possibilities, but Rush Limbaugh is the most obvious choice. Rush is an ardent Mac evangelist and knows a thing or two about marketing. Even if Limbaugh is not put on Apple’s board, the company should market through his daily radio program, paying Rush to tout his favorite computer the same way he builds mattress sales for Select Comfort,” Hill writes.

Full article here.

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Rush Limbaugh calls for Apple iCal to Sidekick solution – November 12, 2004
Apple CEO Steve Jobs: ‘I’m going to just stay away from all that political stuff’ – August 25, 2004
President Bush, candidate Kerry both use Apple PowerBooks – July 14, 2004
Apple Computer Board member Gore blasts President Bush; is this good for government Mac sales? – February 09, 2004
Rush Limbaugh: Why does Apple put politics first? – June 27, 2003
Rush Limbaugh comments on Gored Apple – March 21, 2003
The Mac is Bush to Windows’ Clinton – October 25, 2002
Conservative Mac users miffed at Apple’s Jimmy Carter page – October 14, 2002
Mac users of all stripes weigh in on Jimmy Carter flap – October 15, 2002

94 Comments

  1. Not a bad idea. Ole Rush is a true Mac Evangalista and a great promoter of Macs on his program. Playing to both sides of the political spectrum is always advantagous.
    Besides he is on loan from GOD and that can’t hurt.

  2. It’s true– he’d be very effective. People have problems seeing that much of what he says is meant to “stir the pot,” though. He angers many because they fail to see how he illustrates absurdity with absurdity. Hence the controversy.

    Anyway, he’d sell a ton. Rush basically made Snapple before it was bought out. He made Breathe-Right strips. There are other products, as well. For years he speaks of great products and people respond. I’d love to see what he could do to the Apple market.

    Many influential business leaders lean to the right, even if they speak otherwise. He’d have some sway.

    Won’t happen, though.

  3. Yeah. Right. Great idea. Pay someone for doing what he already does for free. Not only would it be a waste of money, but it would invite accusations that he’s only doing it for the money.

  4. Another conservative talk show host that is a big Mac fan is Glenn Beck. He’s always talking about his iPod and his Macs. He makes his show available to download (in MP3 format) to those that subscribe to his Insider service. He was a primary reason I picked up an iPod…well, that and the fact I am a technology hog.

    Apple would do well to at least advertise during those shows.

  5. Steve Jobs is too liberal for Rush to have on board or Rush is too conservative for Steve Jobs to be on board. Can you imagine the seething between Rush and Gore across the tables. Not going to happen.

  6. It seems like Hill is essentially saying that a person will choose a specific computer based on something as unrelated as politics, race, religion, sexual preference, etc…, instead of thinking about the product itself. Perhaps I am out of touch with the current state of politics and consumer choices, but I can’t see how a person would make their computer choice based on political affiliation instead of on product quality and affordability.

    I’d rather Apple spent time advertising the product itself instead of trying to sell through politics.

  7. This is pure silliness.

    1. Even though I’m a pretty staunch conservative–and sometimes even a Republican–I’m pretty sure that putting Rush on the board of Apple in order to sell Apples is a ridiculous idea.

    The writer’s suggestion completely contradicts Jobs’s instinct–which is a pretty good sign that it is a bad idea.

    Jobs chose not to link his products excessively with politics, because doing that will only polarize the potential market and alienate potential customers.

    Jobs is right. I disagree with Jobs on many things politically, but he earns my business by providing leadership to a company that makes the best computer products. The second he makes Apple more about politics than products, he will lose a large chunk of his customers. And I suspect his products will lose their luster as well.

    2. The notion that there is a link between a persons’ choice of platform and his or her politics is spurious.

    Is Bill Gates a conservative to Steve Jobs’s liberal? Antitrust issues aside, I’ve seen no evidence of this.

    Pres. Bush has been spotted using a PowerBooks. More recently, he has been pictured with his iPod. I also hear Karl Rove loves his Mac. Are Pres. Bush and Rove closet liberals?

    Sen. Kerry also has been seen using Macs.

    All this means is that our brightest leaders think Macs are superior. But then, that just opens another can of worms… ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  8. I love the idea that somebody posted a few months ago that Apple should make a commercial featuring both Al Gore and Rush Limbaugh. Have them arguing about something then have them both pull out PowerBooks to illustrate their ideas. They then have a “moment” but then continue to argue. Fade-out to an Apple Logo and the words Disagree Different.

  9. Businesses that use politics for advantage without publicly impacting the polarizing effects are the winners – Jobs stepping the company back from the same positioning as his personal beliefs speaks volumes. Steve can vote any way he wants, just drive the business to make sure there is enough product for both the blue and the red in the marketplace.

  10. there is a point. reading many threads here – they quite often get into republican bashing. there is a huge liberal contingent here. i am a republican, not a fanatic, just simple conservative.

    because of the mac/liberalism association – whether reality or perception – this does impact people’s view of the mac, the mac community and apple. it will attract some people, and turn away others. whether you disagree with the reality of the situation, the perception is still there – i have dealt with it first hand on a plethora of occassions.

    some people just need to lighten up a bit. there is a place and time for everything.

  11. dab2, that is a brilliant idea. I am a BIG Limbaugh fan and even called him once years ago and told him which machines I was using at work at the time (the 8500 was relatively new). I reckon, though, as much as he is hated, that would make alot of people turn away from Apple. Doesn’t bother me that some of my money goes to help liberal causes; it all works out in the wash…….

  12. I would rather leave politics out of it. I hate it when a political argument breaks out at MDN and the normally cohesive mac community breaks out in a fit of childish name calling. I have my own political opinions but they really don’t have much to do with Apple making the best computers and OS. That is something we can all agree on and really the subject of this site, not politics. I think I would rather see Apple being switzerland in this whole thing which is more or less what Steve was saying in the interview.

    BTW, I have seen articles that showed both Bush and Kerry using Macs. And we know what Rush uses. Does anyone know what Al Franken and Michael Moore use? [the political equivalents of Rush’s Alter ego, the matter to his anti-matter, the ying to his yang, or whatever] ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  13. dab2 I like your “think”

    Like Rush or not, like Al Gore or not, SJ was smart to back away from politics as far as Apple was concerned.

    I haven’t listened to Rush in several years, and was never a ditto head, but he did like his Macs and promoted them (for gratis on his radio show.) That earns him the title of mac evangelist.

    I believe he did the same for clear strips, at first, but Snapple was a paying advertiser.

    Zac

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