Having grown up in Oregon, I of course couldn’t resist an article titled “Oregon just launched the world’s most twee Obamacare campaign“. And it is exactly as amazing as you expect, if not more so.
Seriously. Coverage for every “logger and lawyer and stay-at-home-dad, every baker and banker and indie rock band”? Painted cardboard props held up by earth-tone-clad children? The Portland Cello Project? I’m crying.
The website for the state’s health care exchange, launched in preparation for open enrollment in October, is also pretty nice. Not only was it surely prepared on a Macbook with a hand-painted cover, it provides about as much information as you could hope for before the exchange itself goes live. Oregon is one of 19 states creating its own exchange to comply with Obamacare, and while it still has a few key aspects to work out, it’s likely no further behind than the federal program, to which 25 states defaulted.
But let’s talk about this ad campaign again. I may be a Modcloth-wearing vegetarian whose parents got married in Birkenstocks and keep chickens in the backyard, but I know full well that my home state is not exclusively populated by liberal hippies and gay couples selling free-trade coffee and artisan waffles. My home county hasn’t voted for a Democrat for president since FDR.
In these more conservative areas, though, there’s still lot of emphasis on nature, outdoorsiness, and DIY-ing. Even hipster-hating Oregonians tend to have a strong independent streak that translates into raising pigs and building rustic porch furniture for their houses in the forest. And like it or not, Oregon has become synonymous for many people with a lot of the things in these videos. (Seriously, if I had a dollar for every time someone has asked me if I’ve seen Portlandia, I could buy myself a new Powell’s t-shirt. For the record, no I haven’t and Portland is on the other side of the state.)
I can only assume that Cover Oregon has decided to embrace this exaggerated image and play it up for their own benefit. And assuming the slight feel of parody is intentional, it’s absolutely perfect—I keep watching the videos and catching new details that crack me up. I don’t think I could love this any more.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some arm warmers to finish knitting.