Nike raised some eyebrows yesterday when it released an ad on its Facebook page in the wake of Tiger Woods regaining his world No. 1 ranking on Monday. As is Nike’s custom, the ad was overtly simple, and the message was abundantly clear:
Photo Credit: Facebook
“I want to talk about a Nike ad from Tiger Woods,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “That’s the ad? Winning takes care of everything?”
“The implication being that it wipes out everything previously,” Pat said.
Woods experienced a spectacular fall from grace in late 2009 that involved a car accident, admissions of infidelity, a divorce, and the loss of his No. 1 ranking to name a few, but Nike continued to stand by the golfer, presumably because they drew a line between his personal indiscretions and the professional star power he still offered in the sports’ world. This new ad, however, seems to glorify Woods’ behavior by implying that winning fixes everything.
“That is the problem with our country. That is the problem with our businesses,” Glenn said. “Having Tiger Woods as your spokesperson, that's your deal… But then to run an ad that says, ‘Winning takes of care of everything,’ now I'm anti Nike. Now I'm like, what? So really it's all about the money. That’s it. It's only about the money and only about winning.”
The interesting thing about the Tiger Woods’ saga is that despite all that has transpired, a lot of people find it difficult not to root for him on the golf course. “It's a shocking approach. Because you're right, people looked at Tiger Woods – he had this big thing. Obviously it blew up. He's had a long road back. He's starting to play better,” Stu explained. “Pat and I talked about this on the Pat & Stu show yesterday, that, for whatever reason, I always feel the urge to root for him. I don't know why. I can't describe why I want to root for him.”
In this particular situation, Glenn takes bigger issue with Nike than with Woods. Pat pointed out that Nike’s target audience is children and young adults who want to be seen wearing their sneakers and sports’ gear, which makes the message of ‘winning fixes everything’ even more inappropriate.
“Imagine if this was GE or Lehman Brothers,” Glenn said. “Ok, Lehman Brothers is doing all these horrible, underhanded things, and they fall apart. And then Lehman Brothers comes back, and they haven't changed their problems. But you have this commercial, set in the boardroom, and the guy stands up and says, ‘Our corporate profits are bigger than they've ever been. Lehman Brothers: Winning Takes Care of Everything.’”
“In that case it would probably be ‘Profit Takes Care of Everything,’” Stu said. “I don’t think anyone would accept that.”
“Profit is winning. Winning is profit. When it comes to Tiger Woods, winning is profit. Winning is profit for Nike. It is obscene,” Glenn said. “That's the problem with our nation. And as Pat said, it's aimed at the youth. It's aimed at the youth. It's aimed at the next generation.”
While Nike is by no means a progressive company, this incident touches on an ever-growing problem–progressives are targeting America’s youth.
“The youth are the most important group to get. If you don't get the youth, you lose… And when I'm talking youth, I'm not talking college. I'm talking people in the fourth grade,” Glenn concluded. “If you don't get the youth, you will not be able to win this battle.”