Online commercial implodes charter (video fun time edition)

I’ve recently reported that there’s an anti-charter commercial making the rounds, paid for by the Don’t Lose Your Voice PAC. People curious about the commercial can view it and other anti-charter videos curated by the group on the political action committee’s website,

It’s also embedded here:

[vimeo 108837716 w=500 h=281]

It’s a pretty slick commercial that sticks to the PAC’s message that the charter would build a wall between constituents and their government. Pro-charter factions, like Auditor Greg Kimsey, find the argument “ludicrous,” and have said so publicly. But still, a “wall separating officials from the citizens” is the prevailing message for folks who believe the charter would do bad things.

The commercial represents county government as a collection of blocks stacked together — basically, county government as the game Jenga. The blocks are stacked in a dimly lit warehouse straight out of a “Saw” movie (although with fewer dismembered body parts).

A disembodied voice chimes in, as the camera pans past the blocks. “This represents Clark County government. It’s thriving and stable.”

Then the camera zips over to another set of blocks. These are red and the word “charter” is stenciled on them. “Yet special interests want your vote for a charter that would bring harmful changes to county government,” the voice says.

The red blocks disassemble and slither their way to the other set, representing county government, where they insert themselves. “This charter builds a wall of separation between your elected representatives and county staff and transfers unprecedented power to an unelected county manager not accountable to you,” the voice continues.

At this point, the blocks are stacked high and teetering. “This charter (dramatic pause) doesn’t stack up.” Then all the blocks fall over.


The commercial was produced by a company called Pachyderm Productions. The company doesn’t show up on the secretary of state’s website. However, a search of previous videos produced by Pachyderm Productions indicates they’ve been at this for a while. A few weeks ago the same folks posted an anti-charter video in what appears to be on ongoing series called “Morning Coffee with the Rohans.”

From what I can tell, the series tells the story of two coffee-swilling insomniacs who have awkward conversations about local political issues in their bathrobes. The anti-charter episode of “Morning Coffee with the Rohans” has the titular couple reading the charter and barking lines like, “You know what it sounds like! It sounds like someone is sitting here and promising you something like free health care and free phones,” followed by unconvincing laughter.

[vimeo 106345842 w=500 h=281]

A search of previous episodes of “Morning Coffee with the Rohans” revealed another good one from a year ago. It’s centered around theĀ  berobed protagonists talking about who they should vote for in the Vancouver City Council races. It features some pretty hilarious humor. (Sample joke: “I was at that new open-carry coffee shop, Stand Your Grounds, and I saw these Columbians in the trash.” I hope you can continue reading this post with those tears of laughter streaming down your face.)

The best line comes at the end of the video, when the Rohans give their endorsements for city council candidates. The male Rohan tells his wife that his research indicates they should vote for Micheline Doan, Frank Decker and Jeanne Stewart. His endorsement of Stewart is, in a word, bizarre.

“You know the great thing about Jeanne?” the male Rohan barks in his joke-telling voice. “You don’t have to rub a magic lamp to get your wishes.”


Tyler Graf

Tyler Graf

I started working for The Columbian in 2012 and currently cover Clark County. I'm a 2007 graduate of The University of Oregon. Contact me at

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