Politically Charged Accounting | AccountingWEB

Politically Charged Accounting

I don’t purport to hide my political leanings. I think that it is apparent if you read through my prior blogs, but this blog will clearly leave no doubt. I recently read a politically based blog that I just flat out disagreed with. That’s not unusual. What is unusual is that this blog was not found in any of the usual wingnut locations such as Townhall, Power Line Blog, Real Clear Politics, etc. It was found right here on Accounting Web.


I though a reprisal comment was appropriate, but where to post it? The most logical place would be to utilize the “Share My Voice” option at the end of each blog, but that’s limited to 1,000 characters and I have much more to say than that. How about a moonbat location like the Daily Kos, Crooks & Liars, Huffington Post, etc.? No, that would not meet my target audience expectations. Accounting Web is my forum and Captain Excel is my moniker, so here it is.

Please read the article first by clicking on the link above.

So let me summarize this article. Obama won because he marketed himself better. He dressed sharper, had a cool logo, and keep to a consistent message which allowed him to appeal to his target audience – the young ignorant voter. “The BO campaign was going for a young voter that had never participated much in politics, and didn’t know you were supposed to vote based on qualifications and experience.”

He won even though his tax policies are all wrong and he didn’t have the experience to secure the position. “…lower taxes helps the economy and raising them hurts everyone! Any econ grad knows this. Years and years of history prove it.” And “How else to explain the election of someone to the most important post in the world with no executive experience?”

So in conclusion since Obama won on fluff and without substance a CPA firm can do the same and succeed and even thrive with the right marketing approach and little or no technical ability. “I’ve known for years, as supported by all of our surveys since the mid ‘80’s, that technical competence – and fees – usually rank at or near bottom for most decisions to hire CPAs, far below the human, personality and relationship side.”

Reality check – Somebody please explain to me how years of Bush’s lower tax policies have helped the current economy. In regards to the proposition that the young ignorant voter carried Obama to victory, let’s review the results of the NY Times’ national exit polls which can be found here:


First, did Obama appeal to the young voter, and the results of the NY Times exit poll is:

Age 18-29 30-44 45-59 60+
2008-% 66 52 49 47
2004-% 54 46 48 51
Inc/(Dec) 12 6 1 -4
% of electorate 18% 29% 30% 23% 100%
Inc/(Dec)*% elect 2.16 1.74 0.3 -0.92 3.28
Weighted Avg 66% 53% 9% -28%

Well no doubt Obama nailed the young vote. 66% of the overall weighed average increase was from the age group between 18 and 29, but he also had a substantial increase in the 30-44 range and a moderate increase in the 45-59 range. I guess they too were misled by all that glamour and glitter that Obama spewed. But that’s only half of the equation. Let’s look at the ignorant aspect of the argument. Here are the results for education:

Degree None High Sch Some Coll College Graduate
2008-% 63 52 51 50 58
2004-% 50 47 46 46 55
Inc/(Dec) 13 5 5 4 3
% of electorate 4% 20% 31% 28% 17% 100%
Inc/(Dec)*% elect 0.52 1.00 1.55 1.12 0.51 4.70
Weighted Avg 11% 21% 33% 24% 11%

And also the results for income which is related to education:

Income 15-30K 30-50K 50-75K 75-100K 100+
2008-% 73 60 55 48 51 49
2004-% 63 57 50 43 45 41
Inc/(Dec) 10 3 5 5 6 8
% of electorate 7% 12% 19% 21% 15% 26% 100%
Inc/(Dec)*% elect 0.70 0.36 0.95 1.05 0.90 2.08 6.04
Weighted Avg 12% 6% 16% 17% 15% 34%

Here Obama scored with a 35% increase in weighted average percentage from college graduates and post graduate degrees and an amazing increase of 34% in those making $100K+. Not in this graph are those making 200K+ with an astounding 18 percentage point increase from 34 to 52 and represented 6% of the electorate. Included in this group is the subset (250K+) that was told they would be paying higher taxes under the Obama plan.

Does GM need a bailout because they changed their “PATRIOTIC” marketing strategy or because they make bigger, gas guzzling, inefficient cars and SUV’s that nobody wants to buy and are inferior in quality and cost compared to their foreign counterparts anyway? Will college grads really be swayed by a popular music experience, or are they more likely to choose an employer that provides better opportunity and expertise?

In conclusion, the author underestimated the Obama marketing plan which appealed too much more of the electorate than just the ignorant young voter, and any CPA firm that thinks it’s on firm ground with a rock solid marketing plan with no substance to back it up is sure to fail in the end.

This blog

by Chris Wood, CPA - Chris Wood is a CPA with experience in Big Four, large regional and local public accounting firms. Write to the good Captain on everything under the sun concerning the captivating world of Excel!



More from this blog

Bloggers crew

Steve Knowles has spent 25 years in business and practice in the UK, but he also worked in the states and the years haven't dulled his way of seeing an alternative view to everyone else, and every day is a new adventure.


Joel M. Ungar, CPA is a lifelong resident of the Detroit area and a graduate of The University of Michigan. He is a principal with Silberstein Ungar, PLLC, a Top 15 auditor of SEC public reporting companies.


Allan Boress, CPA, with over 25 years as a practitioner and consultant to the accounting profession. Mr. Boress is the author of 12 published books in 6 different languages, including a best-seller, The "I-Hate-Selling" Book.


Larry Perry, CPA, CPA Firm Support Services, LLC, is the author of accounting and auditing manuals, author and presenter of live staff training seminars, and author of webcast and self-study CPE programs. He blogs about small audits, reviews, and compilations.

Sandra Wiley, COO and Shareholder, is ranked by Accounting Today as one of the 100 Most Influential People in Accounting as a result of her prominent role as an industry expert on HR and training as well as influence as a management and planning consultant. She is also a founding member of The CPA Consultant's Alliance. Sandra is a certified Kolbe™ trainer who advises firms on building balanced teams, managing employee conflict and hiring staff.

Maria Calabrese, CIR, Human Resources manager for Fazio, Mannuzza, Roche, Tankel, LaPilusa, LLC in Cranford, New Jersey, Maria's topics revolve around the world of: Mentoring, Performance management, and The "Y Generation," a.k.a. "The whY generation".


William Brighenti is a CPA, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and Certified [Business] Valuation Analyst, operating an accounting, tax, and QuickBooks consulting firm in Hartford, Connecticut, Accountants CPA Hartford.


Ken Garen, CPA, is the co-founder and President of Universal Business Computing Company (www.ubcc.com), a software development firm of high-volume, high-productivity accounting and payroll technology.


Eva Rosenberg, MBA, EA, is the publisher of TaxMama.com, and author of the weekly syndicated Ask TaxMama column. She provides answers to tax questions from taxpayers and tax professionals worldwide.


Amy Vetter, CPA, CITP is the CPA Programs Leader for Intacct Corporation responsible for leading the CPA/BPO Partners nationally.

Brian Strahle is the owner of LEVERAGE SALT, LLC where he provides state and local tax technical services to accounting firms, law firms and tax research organizations across the United States. He also writes a weekly column in Tax Analysts State tax Notes entitled, "The SALT Effect." For more info, visit his website: www.leveragestateandlocaltax.com
Scott H. Cytron, ABC, is president of Cytron and Company, known for helping companies and organizations improve their bottom line through a hybrid of strategic public relations, communications, marketing programs and top-notch client service. An accredited consultant, Scott works with companies, organizations and individuals in professional services (accounting, finance, medical, legal, engineering), high-tech and B2B/B2C product/service sales.

Rita Keller is a nationally known CPA firm management consultant, speaker, author, mentor and blogger. She has over 30 years hands-on experience in CPA firm management, marketing, technology and administrative operations.

Stacy Kildal is the mom of two fantastic kids, an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, Certified Enterprise Solutions ProAdvisor, Sleeter Group Certified Consultant, a nationally recognized member of the Intuit Trainer and Writer Network, and co-host of RadioFree QuickBooks.
Michael Alter's blog specializes in providing practical advice to those who seek greater profitability and practice management tactics that enhance deeper client relationships.

Sally Glick, CMO, Principal, Marketer of the Year in 2003 and AAM Hall of Famer in 2007, leads a lively discussion of the constantly expanding roles of marketing and the professional marketers that drive this initiative in accounting firms of all sizes.


The IMA Young Professionals Blog features the insights of IMA’s Young Professionals Committee. Committee members share advice and experiences on careers, continuing education, work/life balance, and other issues affecting young accounting and finance professionals.


FEI Financial Reporting Blog provides highlights from SEC, PCAOB, FASB, IASB, and other regulatory news, including reporting under Sarbanes-Oxley Sect 404. It is written by Edith Orenstein, Director of Technical Policy Analysis at FEI.


Sue Anderson has 30 years of experience in continuing education for accountants. Currently she is the program director for online CPE provider CPE Link.


Jim Fahey is COO of Apple Growth Partners, a regional CPA firm in Ohio. His focus is on the effective and efficient use of technology within the firm by all team members.

Caleb Newquist is the Editor-in-Chief of Sift Media US, overseeing content for both AccountingWEB and Going Concern.

Leita Hart-Fanta, CPA, CGFM, and CGAP is the author of "The Yellow Book Interpreted" and owner of Yellowbook-CPE.com a website devoted to training for governmental auditors.


AccountingWEB is more than just a U.S. team of journalists and financial and technology experts - we have an international side, too! Members of our British team who publish AccountingWEB.co.uk share their ideas, insights, and perspectives from across the pond.