Radnor Reports …
... can help you prepare for the changes coming out of Washington.
Radnor publishes two popular public newsletters:
- Inside Washington's Headlines
- Radnor Geopolitical Report
Emailed twice monthly, with special Radnor Reports as warranted, these newsletters often forecast events and decisions months in advance.
As you read news accounts or view television programs, you may come to realized just how often you heard about it first through Radnor Reports.
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- The Joe Biden I Know
- While we were paying attention to Donald Trump …
- The GOP Debate: Who Won? Who Lost?
- Pollster Frank Luntz sums up the shortcomings of some of the GOP candidates
- Ever notice how Swedes use humor to express important concepts?
- Social Security is called “the third rail of American politics” for a reason: Touch it and you die.
- Rand Paul campaign expects contributions to “increase big.” So is this about political fundraising or national security?
- From Decoration Day to Memorial Day: A Fractious but Very American Journey
- I lost two good and long-time friends today: Jim Brady and Gene Callahan
- Obama doesn’t seem to know how to be president
- A tale of two Virginias
- The Manipulator: Psychological Profile of Ukrainian President Yanukovich
- Chris Christie: The revealing recklessness
- Chris Christie and Bridgegate: Just one email away from destruction
- Why is China doing what nations do when they prepare for war?
- Nelson Mandela, one woman’s words, and the whole world’s dignity
- See you in Reyjavik, Joe.
- Obama is doing what he does: the grubby political stuff
- The Lonely Answer: Syria is for Realists
- Inclusiveness: By Invitation Only
- Roe v. Wade: Was Another Concern on the Justice’s Mind?
- A question from Politico: Is it appropriate for politicians to use this time, in any capacity, to reexamine gun control?
- Is the Middle the Future? If so, Who’s in the Middle?
- “You can’t teach an old dogma new tricks.”
- A looming tea party backlash?
- Should the GOP break the anti-tax pledge?
- Are Republicans missing too many Sister Souljah moments?
- George McGovern, 1922-2012
- The politics of clout: Where’s the bourbon and branch water?
- Candy Tries to Help Her Hero
- The tea parties in our political future
- Growling and roaring in the Romney campaign
- Obama’s audacious strategy: Desperation or deliberation?
- Last hurrah for Nancy Pelosi?
- With friends like these …
- A tale of two uninspiring speeches
- Of smoots and gaffes
- Romney the Unready
- Romney and the media circus over Bain and tax returns
- This horrible sinking feeling
- Monty Python, Political Pundit
- The wages of Wisconsin?
- BLAMING OBAMACARE ON CHIEF JUSTICE JOHN MARSHALL – Part 2
- Wisconsin: Labor gambles and loses
- Why Legends Lose
- Dumb comment followed by dumber comment
- BLAMING OBAMACARE ON CHIEF JUSTICE JOHN MARSHALL – Part 1
- Mulligans are for golf, not for political talking-heads: A defense of Hilary Rosen
- Politics is plumbing
- Santorum Proves that the Fat Lady is in Bad Voice
- Anthony W. Hawks Balanced Budget amendment Border control Business Chicago Cubs China Congress Constitutional law Controversial David Murrin Egypt Ekaterina and Elizaveta Egorova Elections Favorites Federal budget Finance Geopolitical Global warming Guns and gun control Healthcare Iran Iraq Journalism Ken Feltman Ken Feltman at Politico Lobbyists Mark Rhoads Michael Granger Middle East Mitt Romney National debt Organized labor Peter Feltman Politcal Consulting Political parties Politics President Obama psychological profile Russia Science Snip-it Sports Steve Jobs Syria Thought-Provoking Analysis Ukraine Walid Phares War powers Washington White House
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By Ken Feltman
One of the worst habits of political consultants is our tendency to criticize other consultants. This is especially true when the criticism involves a candidate’s behavior. Often, no matter what the consultant advises, the candidate does something else. If disaster results, media coverage zooms in on the candidate. But we consultants tend to rip into our consulting competitors.
Legendary political consultant Joseph Napolitan, co-founder of the International Association of Political Consultants, once remarked on the “vulture inside every consultant.” He and I sometimes did a “Frick and Frack” show in presidential election years. First, he discussed the Democratic candidates and appraised their chances and I examined the Republicans. Then, we switched and he took after the Republicans and their campaigns while I dissected the Democrats.
We noticed that both of us were more brutal in blaming our own party’s consultants for what may have been sins of the candidates. Initially, we concluded that this was a result of familiarity: We knew the consultants in our own party better than those of the other party and, therefore, could make more insightful judgments about practitioners from our own party. Soon, we concluded that we were wrong.
Within a few days, we gave very similar presentations to a group of young corporate CEOs in New York and then to our consulting peers at a meeting in Europe. The CEOs focused on issues and the candidates. In a dispassionate and analytical way, they probed what we knew about the budgets, fundraising, advertising and strategies of the candidates. The CEOs wanted to find out which candidates, because of their skills at building strong campaign staffs, had the inside track on victory.
The European meeting was different. Almost immediately, the consultants – from all across the world – delved into the personalities and past successes and failures of the consultants for the various campaigns. The consultants at the international meeting from parties on the left were much harsher on American Democratic consultants. Those from right-leaning parties were tough on Republican consultants. Whether from actual knowledge or just plain jealousy, the folks on both the left and the right bashed their ideological counterparts in the United States. Joe and I decided that competitive juices were at work. Joe commented that there is a vulture inside each of us. We cannot help ourselves. But each of us can be aware of our own frailties and our own human nature.
I was reminded of this a few days ago when I joined some GOP political consultants, media producers and pollsters gathered in a Washington watering hole with a couple of political reporters. Quickly, the discussion was directed by the reporters to what they called the troubles with Mitt Romney’s campaign. Like vultures, the Republican consultants descended on their prey.
Wait a minute! These Romney consultants did not just happen to fall off a turnip truck as Romney was driving by thinking that he needed to hire a few folks. They are seasoned, capable, respected men and women. Maybe Romney is making their job harder. We have all had our share of “difficult” candidates. Maybe Romney is a dream to work with. In the end, that does not matter. Only the winner from among all the candidates who had the nerve to put his or her name on the ballot will be sworn in next January. The consultants do not even hold the Bible or stand beaming close by as the oath is administered. At best, they are in the background and usually not even there.
Some of them will move on into the White House with their winner. All of them – whether with the winner or one of the many losers – will have learned a great deal during this cycle’s campaign. They will know things that cannot be taught in grad school. They will know people who you meet only on the campaign trail. They will get the phone calls in four years from wannabe candidates.
The Frick and Frank rule applies: Candidates win or lose but political consultants gain invaluable experience no matter what happens on election day.