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The "Farmers Insurance News-Alert" website is dedicated to providing the consumer and general public with detailed information concerning the Farmers Insurance Group. This includes fraud reports, consumer complaints, lawsuit's and other legal actions taken against this company. All information contained herein is for educational purposes only. Original sources, when known are sited.

 

"One Bucket of Manure -
Two Dozen Cameras"

On a sunny Southern California morning in the autumn of 1988 a dump truck loaded with animal manure drove slowly up Wilshire Boulevard to the posh corporate offices of Farmers Insurance Inc. Farmers was one of several major insurance companies spending more than $55 million dollars (more than anyone in history) in a campaign to defeat Proposition 103, a renegade consumer initiative to roll back auto insurance rates.

Faced with a truckload of insurer cash against them, the backers of Proposition 103, "Voter Revolt," decided to bring Farmers a load of its own. Proposition 103 author Harvey Rosenfield scooped a pile of manure out of the truck and headed off to give a bucketful to Farmers' chief executive officer. Rosenfield's message - the insurance industry's avalanche of advertising was, "Just Plain Bull!" Every major television station and newspaper in the area turned out for the event, a "photo opportunity" just too good to miss.

With reporters in tow, Rosenfield was stopped at the door by a Farmers security guard. After a few minutes of gentle negotiation over whether Rosenfield and his manure would be allowed in the building, the guard finally agreed that he would deliver it himself, and the bucket was handed over. "It was the most cameras I ever saw at one time," says Rosenfield. The story and pictures made major news all over the state.

Nothing plays a more critical role in initiative politics than the media. Television, radio and newspapers are how voters get their information and how the media portrays an initiative will have everything to do with how people will cast their vote. Knowing how the media works and how campaigns can use it effectively is absolutely vital.

 

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