The National Guard Paid Millions To Advertise On NASCAR And Got ... Zero Recruits
NASCAR is where America goes to watch its most beloved brands move at high speeds and occasionally crash into each other and explode (if you look closely, there are race cars involved too). One such brand is the United States National Guard, which spent $88 million between 2011 and 2013 for the honor of putting the words "National Guard" on Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s car, right next to "Mountain Dew."
Robert Laberge/Getty Images"DALE EARNHARDT, NATIONAL GUARD sounds like the name of a corny '80s cartoon.
So how many new recruits did the National Guard net for that investment? In 2012, some 24,800 potential recruits claimed they decided to join the Guard after seeing ads in the vicinity of fast-racing cars. Of those, only 20 managed to meet the necessary qualifications to get into the service, which is the opposite of surprising, when you consider that the age of the average NASCAR viewer is 58. And of those 20, exactly zero ended up guarding the nation.
The silliest part is that the Guard could have avoided this if they'd asked the Marine Corps or the Navy, which both also tried NASCAR sponsorships to boost recruitment numbers, and also ended up bailing on the endeavor a few years later.
U.S. Navy/Wikimedia CommonsOld Navy sales went up 300% among rednecks during those years, though.
Venezuela Gave Danny Glover $27 Million For A Movie That Never Went Into Production
Since the early '90s, actor Danny Glover (most famous for having to put up with Mel Gibson in the Lethal Weapon movies) has been trying to make a film about Toussaint L'Ouverture, the man who led Haiti's slaves in their rebellion against France. In 2007, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez stepped up to make it happen.