I sat down with my roommate to watch a little bit of a baseball game. I am not a real fan of the sport, so this is not a common thing for me to do. I have nothing to say about the game itself. But I saw a commercial that made me sick. That is what this node is all about. I have changed the names in this node to protect the guilty.

The scene

Half a dozen well dressed, middle aged men sit around in a living room. One of them is sipping a glass of wine. The oldest one does all the talking.

Hello I am Frank Sunnen. The Sunnen family has been selling cars in St. Louis for over 40 years. St. Louis has been very good to us. So we have decided to give something back. Everytime the Cardinals, the Rams, or the Blues win a game, we will donate $100 to (big name charity) Childrens Charity. Thank you St. Louis. Be sure and come visit any of the Sunnen dealerships for a test drive on any of our fine automobiles.

This sounds very nice at first. But let's look at what they were really saying.

The real scene

Hello I am Frank Sunnen. I am a millionaire. So are all of my brothers. The women are all home in the kitchen where they belong. My advertising manager thought of a great idea to help us sell more cars, and look like good people at the same time. While only using a tiny fraction of our advertising budget.

Everytime one of our hometown teams wins a game, we will donate $100 to the big local childrens charity. Don't worry about the fact that we spent several thousand dollars airing this commercial. Don't think about the fact that we will spend $4000 telling you about each and every hundred dollars that we donate. That isn't important. (Did I mention that I am wearing $400 shoes?)

We have selected a local charity, even though $100 could save the life of a child in a third world country. Let's face it. None of those children in Africa are going to grow up and buy a car from me, now are they? Don't forget to buy your next car from us, after all, we care.

The whole idea of this makes me sick. Charitible contributions used as advertising. How many children's lives could be saved with the money they spend telling us how wonderful they are. Can you imagine the poor mother having to tell her dying child, "I am sorry. There is no medicine. You may have gotten to live if the Cardinals had won that last game." If that family cared one bit about children, they would not be up on television wearing $900 suits, and telling us how their $100 is really helping people. If they really did care. Then they would have donated all of that money to begin with, and them some.

I would like to thank JayBonci for his excellent rebuttal.