This wasn’t just the best Super Bowl Commercial.

Via on Feb 3, 2013

god made a farmer harvey ram super bowl

Update: click here for the best thing I’ve read on elephant in forever: the rest of the story.

Update: was Ram’s commercial “plagiarized” from this youtube vid?

“Here’s the thing, though: While beautifully produced, it’s not exactly a new idea. As Slate points out…Farms.com posted a YouTube video in 2011, also featuring Harvey’s speech and images of farmers. (The audio, incidentally, is from a 1978 speech Harvey made to the Future Farmers of America.)”

The best Super Bowl Commercial? One of the best commercials I’ve ever seen, period.

Did you know? Good earth, health and farmer-and-seed-killing Monsanto is a sponsor of the farmer org touted below. So let’s use any inspiration via the below commercial to intro folks to Mr. Joel Salatin, Mr. Organic Farming not only Works it can be More Productive and Healthy—share up this blog!

This was one of the best commercials of any kind I’ve ever seen, and heard:

Thing is, some farmers are being “encouraged” (forced, often) to cut corners, these days, by subsidies and Monsanto. Here’s one farmer (a Republican, God-loving man at that) who isn’t.

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14 Responses to “This wasn’t just the best Super Bowl Commercial.”

  1. [...] Did you see Ram’s beautiful “And God made a Farmer” Super Bowl ad? It features the narration b… [...]

  2. elephantjournal says:

    "Paul Harvey (voice in the dodge superbowl commercial) was a radio show host for ABC Broadcasting. He has been named Salesman of the Year, Commentator of the Year, Person of the Year, Father of the Year, and American of the Year as well as having recieved the Presidential Medal of Freedom." (covenantnews.com)

  3. Amanda says:

    I grew up in a small town, about 15K in population if you counted every cow in the valley. Every morning a little red light on the automatic coffee maker would pierce the darkness at exactly 6:00 AM (which felt like the middle of the night to me), and I'd hear my dad walk in the kitchen, pour his first cup of coffee and turn on the radio. Paul Harvey's voice thus wafted into my bedroom regularly, and, along with the smell of fresh brewed Folgers, became a thread in the fabric of my childhood. I didn't know anything about Paul Harvey's politics, but I loved the way he *owned* a pregnant pause.

    Did Dodge sell trucks on the strength of Harvey's voice last night? Probably not to farmers – those who are left likely declared themselves Chevy or Ford men 50 years ago. Probably not to those of us who consider ourselves "farm-friendly" either – we're buying hybrids or bikes and hoping someone else can drive when we actually go visit farms. Nope, that ad was probably targeted at suburban middle America, those who might need a Dodge Ram for Costco runs or to trailer their "toy haulers" to the lake. The ad "celebrated" farmers in the same way that other Super Bowl ads "celebrated" military families by waving the flag and tugging at our collective heartstrings, even as they gloss over the real pain and effects of war-making. (Not that it doesn't work, I choked up during Jeep's "Whole Again" ad http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FadwTBcvISo&feat… and cheered every single time Harvey said, "God made a farmer"!)

    What was a revelation to me about the farmer ad was that in memorializing and purporting to celebrate farm families and their way of life, the ad *highlighted the fact that they're gone*. We all know the short version of that history – Earl Butz said get big or get out, and they did. And during that painful transition, rural America emptied out into the cities, giant companies took control of the inputs to, infrastructure surrounding and distribution of farm products, and we made a massive cultural shift toward suburbanization and all that goes with it.

    I think hearing Paul Harvey's voice and seeing those pictures of those incredible farmers and their families struck a collective chord because it catalyzed us to recognize another milestone in the hollowing out of our society. Where now are the men who are strong enough to plow a field straight, have the integrity to not cut corners, and are gentle enough to splint a bird's leg? They aren't carrying a "murse" and pulling cappuccinos in the city, that's for sure. Nor are there many of them in public office. And they're certainly not wrapping themselves in the flag and listening to Rush Limbaugh. They, and they ideals they represented, have largely been emasculated or made obsolete.

    That way of life wasn't perfect and I don't mean to idealize it. There wasn't room for minority voices of pretty much any kind in that world, and I personally would prefer to be with a man willing to partner in more ways than the simple gender-based division of labor allowed. But as a society I think we miss the human connection that came from doing physical work side by side, and then sitting together at dinner, feeling exhausted and productive.

    I think that commercial wasn't about trucks or farmers, I think it was about us and what we miss about being connected to each other.

    And that, my friends, is the rest of the story.

    • sherwood8028 says:

      Good for you – you saw right through the commercial aspects…

      I grew up on a farm where the alarm clock was set at 4:30 although it wasn;t a clock, it was my grandfather responding to the need to milk our cows. And he taught me to plant good seeds and care for the ground around them and – in due season, you will be rewarded. Now, at 83+ years of age, I am beginning to catch on to all that he taught me.

      Oh yes, Paul Harvey. His thoughts linger on waiting for others to slow down a bit and take hold of all that he had to say.

    • DaveTelf says:

      this is a brilliant comment. deserving of a blog all its own.

    • Jane says:

      Amanda, what a wonderful piece of writing – thank-you for telling the rest of the story and for expressing it so well.

    • elephantjournal says:

      Amanda, love. Could I share this? Would be our honor. ~ Waylon@elephantjournal.com

      • raven says:

        You guys! Come. On. This feels like the Zombie Apocalypse. How is it that you are all so eager to pick up on the syrupy schlock?! It's very quaint – the coffee, the cows as part of the population, all that. You're helping everyone's superbowl buzz continue a little longer, but I think that's about it… You make some helpful points here Amanda, but I'm so not comfortable with this being "the rest of the story." "Those incredible farmers" were acting out a mandate orchestrated by the usury economic system… loans that demanded to be paid with interest. It makes everyone in competition with each other for never enough money, turns family into a desperate affair, and makes nature and her bounty into a commodity to be plundered with ever increasing precision and ruthlessness. This mandate continues with exponential vigour today, and under the cover of sentimentality is advanced and asserted by this ad.

        I would say that your sentiment masks the pain of the lifestyle you and your family lived growing up. Sure there was love, but the love was there DESPITE the fact that your dad had to go out and work so hard. Those men who were willing to plow a field straight were scared of bankruptcy, and as it turned out, were forced to do whatever the industry and the financial markets prescribed. The paradigm was doomed to emasculation and obsolescence from the start as it was a worldview based in separation from and domination over nature…. accompanied by the racist, sexist and gender based pigeon holing that helps people numb the pain of what they are doing. We need a sober look at this because it's still here. The fact that we can see it, that we can see that we have been doing harm – this is a good sign.. it heralds the possibility of the realization of interconnectedness. However, if the truck companies get their way, we'll see a "cultural shift" that makes "suburbanization" look like the height of sanity.

        Yes .. we need to reestablish connection, yes we need to come upon warmth. Yes we need physical excercise and contribution. We drastically need all those things and we need them now… but they won't be found in sentiment, and they won't be found by remaining ignorant to the roots of "the hollowing out of our society"! Perpetuating the sentiment as this response does furthurs our isolation.

        You say, "I think that commercial wasn't about trucks or farmers," I agree … I think it is powerful propaganda to advance the aims and objectives of the corporatist state – namely, to keep people high and compliant while community and the planet is strip mined – turned into money. You say "I think it was about us and what we miss about being connected to each other" It's cute that you interpret it that way, but if we don't wake up to the impilcations of what's being asserted here and root them out, connection will be ever elusive, and the pain will be glossed over with more sentiment, more superbowls while our children continue to be forced into mere nostalgia about their absent fathers.

        peace
        r

  4. Emma says:

    Liked it but missed seeing the women farmers. As a friend who grew up on a farm told me, she's always noticed it's "The Farmer and his Wife." Even though her farmer mother worked with the animals more.

  5. [...] below mini-essay was left as a comment from one “Amanda” on my blog about the best Super Bowl commercial, last night. We’ve asked the author if we might share and credit, and will update when we here back. But [...]

  6. Raven says:

    I just had a look this morning at your "this wasn't just the best superbowl commercial" and i'm shocked and so disturbed. The caliber of authors that you attract had left me hoping that you were actually an organization "about anything that helps us to live a good life that's also good for others, and our planet" as your website so happily states. This commercial, (a) is on T.V. (good life?) (b) is played during corporate state's Colosseum extravaganza (good for who?) (c) is for a power truck company (good for the planet?) (d) uses syrupy, sentimental, and religious overtones to advance the industrial and usury economic state, whilst attempting to ennoble the poor debt pions that it systematically impoverishes and alienates. I'm sooo confused as to how this media meets your needs or expresses the values of your organization. You don't say in your post. This article and this ad trash my need for integrity and truth.

    Tell me what about this ad helps you live "a good life." Tell me how this ad is "good for others." Tell me how this ad promotes goodness for "our planet."

    The industrial-"religious"-usury economic state has been LAMBASTING farmers and farming, making it about financial commodities and bio-tech companies who attempt to control the market through financial manipulation, genetic modification, life threatening poisons, seed patenting, and by influencing the creation of legislation to prohibit the saving of seeds. 250,000 farmers have committed suicide in India because of the financial tricks of Monsanto and the bio-tech companies.

    Go ahead, appreciate "farmers". Everyone needs appreciation. But realize that in this context, the praise being heaped on them is like praise for sweatshop workers as the administration makes plans for even more hours for even less pay. This ad is about keeping us all high while the corporatist-industrial state puts an end to our capacity to have healthy community and survive on the planet. Please come down from your sentimental high soon. We need to cooperate with sobriety if we have any hope of generating a truthful, healthy life.

    Sincerely,
    Raven

    • integralhack says:

      Raven,

      Well said. This was what I posted on FB after some friends started pedantically posting the "prophetic" Paul Harvey:

      "I know many Americans have (re)discovered Paul Harvey after watching the Dodge Superbowl advert (disclaimer: I also like farmers), but now I see links to the alleged 1960s "prophetic" radio broadcast linked to below (along with some nauseating Tea Party imagery).

      Unsurprisingly, it is a hoax. The original text from the 1960s doesn't mention gambling, for example, but it is a predictable diatribe against communism –hardly "prophetic." Fancying himself a journalist, Harvey would submit advance copies of his radio scripts to his friend, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, for preapproval. A former McCarthyite, Harvey railed against homosexuals and invoked the name of God to boost ratings and placate advertisers.

      If I were the devil, I would use the US military to sell Jeeps and invoke the imagery of hard-working farmers (along with the voice of Paul Harvey) to sell Dodge pickups.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w13Vynj2bWA "

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  8. karlsaliter says:

    Here is a great parody of the superbowl piece. http://www.elephantjournal.com/2013/02/god-made-a

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