Opinion: Go RVing spokespeople pen anti-Trump book?

Editor’s note: Despite a flurry of death threats and vile, obscene and sexually-charged comments directed toward our publication staff in email and social media posts, we are keeping this post live on our site with comments turned off. We are doing so to aid Brad and Amy Herzog in their effort to raise money for their book project, for which we pledged $100 ourselves.

RV Daily Report does not have the clout or credibility with the RV Industry Association to influence any decision by that organization, especially a decision to terminate a lucrative contract with 17-year veteran spokespeople for a miscalculation in judgment. We have it on good authority that others in the industry alerted RVIA of the existence of the Herzog’s Kickstarter campaign before we published our newsletter that day and that the couple would have lost their contract anyway.

However, keeping this opinion piece alive allows the Herzog’s to use it in raising money to support their project and kick-start a new chapter in their lives. Contrary to popular belief, RV Daily Report did not “get the couple fired.” The Herzogs – and Herzogs only – killed their golden goose.

 

By Greg Gerber
Editor, RV Daily Report

For years, Brad and Amy Herzog have been the voice of the Go RVing campaign. They traveled the nation multiple times in a donated RV on multi-week media tours on behalf of the RV Industry Association to promote the benefits of RVing.

Brad Herzog’s blogs can still be found on the Go RVing website at blog.gorving.com/author/brad-herzog.

Today, the couple is raising $7,000 through a crowd funding service to promote their book “D is for Dump Trump: An Anti-Hate Alphabet.”

The book is described by the Herzogs as being “a picture book for adults about a man-child. Funny, fearless poems and illustrations about the dangers of Donald Trump, from A to Z.”

“B is for a bully and a bigot. N is for narcissism. X is for xenophobia. All the best words can be found in ‘D is for Dump Trump: An Anti-Hate Alphabet’ — 26 poems and 20 original editorial cartoons about this detestable candidate,” the Herzogs write. “As you roam the alphabet, you’ll laugh, you’ll sigh, and if you’re as horrified by Trump as we are, you’ll want to spread the word.”

Image from Herzogs' crowd funding website
Image from Herzogs’ crowd funding website

I certainly hope the RV Industry Association will soon disavow their affiliation with these authors. For an organization that routinely walks the tightrope of political correctness, it seems rather odd that RVIA would turn a blind eye to such a divisive book in this politically-charged environment.

However, James Ashurst, RVIA’s vice president of communications and marketing, confirmed to me today that the Herzogs are under contract to promote the RV lifestyle via another road tour this summer.

Perhaps the book can be given away as a premium at spontaneous rallies — or experiential marketing opportunities — in every city along the tour route.

I can hear it now:

“Next up on ABC-15, Brad and Amy Herzog, authors of the wildly popular “D is for Dump Trump: An Anti-Hate Alphabet,” who are in studio to talk about the benefits of RVing.  Brad, do you think the economy under a Trump administration will allow people to buy and use an RV? Is the RV industry as a whole as ‘xenophobic’ as Donald Trump? On your book cover, why didn’t you show billionaire Donald Trump driving a motorhome off a cliff? Isn’t that the direction he wants to take the country and, some say, the world?”

While I support the Herzogs’ right to free speech, one has to wonder why these California liberals need other people’s money to publish a book.

Amazon allows anyone with an idea — even one as wacky as the Herzogs — to publish a book on demand through their CreateSpace service. Authors just upload a PDF to Amazon’s specifications. Amazon responds with what it will cost to print a book, which is about $2.50 for a 150-page book. The author’s set a price and viola the books are printed one at a time as they are ordered and shipped to buyers.

In fact, the Herzogs can publish their book today for free by uploading it to Kindle Direct Publishing. After setting a price, the book is available to buy and download on any computer or mobile device that has the free Kindle app.

There is absolutely no reason to employ a crowd-funding strategy to print and market a book in 2016.

But, when they are advocating a political agenda in an election year, if the entrepreneurial Herzogs can make money bashing a billionaire entrepreneur, hey, more power to them. They should just do it on their time and not in conjunction with an RVIA road trip.

Greg Gerber

Greg Gerber

A journalist who has covered the recreation vehicle industry since January 2000, Greg Gerber founded RV Daily Report on April Fool's Day in 2009. He also serves as the editor of the publication and website. As an Eagle Scout, he has enjoyed camping for decades and has visited every state except Hawaii. A DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three young women, he has two grandchildren as well. He currently splits his time between Wisconsin, Texas and Arizona. Greg can be reached at editor@rvdailyreport.com.

Leave a Comment

  • Tara Corvo says:

    Here in America, people are allowed to have their own opinions and voice them outside of work. You and Trump seem to share similar ideas about whether that right should be allowed to continue. Your unsupported accusations caused this family to lose their jobs. At any real reporting organization, making up facts would have the same result for you. We’ll all be watching.

  • Linda Kleinbart says:

    I feel it is so horrible that your article caused the Herzogs to lose their jobs with the RV industry. Never once did they express their opinions in association with the RV industry. I guess it is your opinion that they shouldn’t have opinions of their own. Is that what this country is coming to?

  • Traci Mann says:

    Wow, classic Trumpian misinterpretation (or ignorance) of the U.S. Constitution: Only views that are favorable to Trump may be freely expressed.. The rest must be sued (or scared) into silence. I can assure you, Mr. Gerber, after reading your absurd rant, I will only scream louder.

    • Greg Gerber says:

      Rant away, Traci. But, maybe you should take a course in the U.S. Constitution at that university of yours. The first amendment, which I assume you and others are referring to, states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

      Sorry, but Congress is not involved in this issue, nor is any government agency prohibiting anyone’s freedom of speech, and nobody is preventing anyone from publishing anything. The author is free to publish his book anytime he wants to and to openly sell it for as much money as he can get.

      However, some people in the RV industry are concerned that a connection could be made between a political book published during a volatile election year and the ability to publicly represent that industry during a period in which he was a contracted paid spokesperson. And look what happened? An obscure industry newsletter that has little, if any, credibility with the RV Industry Association, and is unknown outside of the RV industry, makes a connection and the association opts to cancel the contract. Then, all hell breaks lose and the messenger is shot.

      Maybe, just maybe, there was a clause in that contract that prevented paid spokespeople from engaging in this type of activity during the contract period, which, according to an RVIA press release, extended all of 50 days. Legally, RVIA could not cancel the contract unless a breach occurred. Had he waited until Aug. 8 to launch his Kickstarter campaign, nobody would have cared as much.

      GREG GERBER
      Editor, RV Daily Report

      • W.R. Johnson says:

        Greg,

        Do you mean to tell us you did not even bother to research whether or not there was a clause in the contract the Herzogs signed that prohibited them from publishing material outside of their job? You went ahead and wrote this scathing editorial without even checking that?

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