Apple and the White House seem to have some form of affinity for one another. After a historical defeat to George W. Bush in 2000, Al Gore went on to continue focusing on the environment and joined Apple’s Board of Directors in 2003. Rumor has it, that Jay Carney is the front runner for Apple’s PR Chief position. What next? Hillary Clinton as head of Strategic Marketing?
Al Gore being brought on board seemed an odd fit, and the fact he was an avid Apple users and Final Cut Pro editing enthusiast still didn’t seem to make much sense on the surface of things. But Apple was constantly being beaten on by Green Peace, with Press Releases or staged protests at Apple's annual shareholder meetings. While many other companies, such as Dell or HP, were no better, and perhaps worse, with their environmental record, Apple was the hot commodity and bought Green Peace much more attention.
Since Al Gore has been on Apple’s board, Green Peace’s negative drumbeat against Apple has all but vanished. Green Peace is now promoting Apple in many environmental fronts, which is a dramatic shift for the organization. Green Peace’s latest report gives Apple a 100% score on their clean energy initiatives. Regardless of Al Gore’s political lean, his political clout within environmental groups cannot be overstated. Apple’s move to put him on the board of directors was a shrewd, if not brilliant play that has paid off for Apple in more ways than one.
Unlike Al Gore sitting on Apple’s board, Jay Carney as PR Chief for Apple would be an entirely different scenario. Due to the fact Carney has been the White House Press Secretary for over three years, he has become a polarizing figure. Obfuscating, deflecting and semantics is the job of the President’s Press Secretary — not necessarily a great fit for Apple. Internationally, where the United States is not universally loved, hoisting Carney in as Apple’s spokesman would not endear many to the brand. Carney would be better suited in the role of lobbyist for Apple, back in Washington D.C., as that has been his life for the last decade.
Hillary Clinton? Should Hillary Clinton choose not to run for President, or loses another stunning loss in the Democrat Primary or general election, in political terms she would fit the mold of Al Gore rather well. Should Carney join Apple’s staff, and Al Gore continue on Apple’s board, why not Hillary? Maybe the legal team would better suit her skills.
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