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Cat and Mouse: Biden Bats Us Around

Alan Kelly | Posted 08.27.2016 | Politics
Alan Kelly

While the lion that is Donald Trump roars, there's a cat-and-mouse game that can't be discounted in the run-up to 2016. Vice President Joe Biden is sounding out allies and donors as he weighs a run for the presidency.

Conservative Options: Christian Jihad? Or Civil Disobedience?

Alan Kelly | Posted 07.01.2016 | Religion
Alan Kelly

The sentiments of the GOP hopefuls are deeply brooding, even desperate, and Democrat candidates will be forced to take them seriously. The question remains, then, what plays will they employ to counter the cries for religious justice.

How Mitt Romney and Retailers Dismantled Dixie

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.29.2016 | Politics
Alan Kelly

When the disillusioned 21-year-old Dylann Roof shot and killed nine black worshipers at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, the tragedy quickly focused on the legacy of the Confederate flag and its tacit endorsement of racism. For presidential candidates courting southern conservatives, this called for high-wire political acts.

Politics as Performance: From Obama's Luther to Huckabee's Christ

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.15.2016 | Comedy
Alan Kelly

As the White House Correspondents' Dinner reliably demonstrates, performance is the new politics. By tapping comedy, drama and other forms of storytelling influencers can access strategies they'd normally never employ.

I'm Kinda Sorry: Hillary's Plays on Her Emailing Ways

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.13.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Instead of running at the revelations of her private email service, she preferred to finesse the foment with signature testing, freezing and diverting strategies.

Influence Abuse: Trust, Truth and Games of Gotcha

Alan Kelly | Posted 04.28.2015 | Media
Alan Kelly

Is it time for the spin police?  Sitting in the theaters of entertainment, politics and business, one wonders if practitioners of influence are abusing their tradecraft and the trust of their markets.  One wonders then if they'll self-correct or be market-corrected.

Memo to Howard Kurtz: Scott and Jeb Say It's Time to Play

Alan Kelly | Posted 04.21.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Okay, so media critic Howard Kurtz doesn't want us to talk about 2016. But the problem is that a couple dozen Republican hopefuls do... and they're running plays that merit our attention.

Sailboat Racing: Plays We Run on and Off The Water

Alan Kelly | Posted 04.12.2015 | Sports
Alan Kelly

I love sailboat racing. It's an obscure and little-understood sport -- my secret connection to wind, water and a cherished community of irreverent frenemies. My boat is an Etchells, a complex, 30-foot design that's raced by club amateurs like me and Olympian and America's Cup athletes alike.

Obamalaw: Schumer's Bait and the President's Fiat Keep GOP Off Balance

Alan Kelly | Posted 04.15.2014 | Politics
Alan Kelly

To many Americans, the process of proposing, passing and implementing the Affordable Care Act has amounted to a game of political power and survival. This week hardened that perception as one senator and one president ran plays to breath life into Obamacare.

Nightmare on Clinton Street? Elizabeth Warren Makes Her Play for 2016

Alan Kelly | Posted 01.23.2014 | Media
Alan Kelly

Who or what is behind The New Republic's piece, "Hillary's Nightmare? A Democratic Party That Realizes Its Soul Lies With Elizabeth Warren," is politi...

The Strategy of Restraint: Obama's Discipline Trips and Traps Rivals

Alan Kelly | Posted 08.31.2013 | Politics
Alan Kelly

From subtle suggestions to diversionary rhetoric to preemptive flourishes, there is, save for Bill Clinton, no other president of the modern era better adapted to the art and science of influence and strategy.