Monday, December 3, 2007

Are Your Kids in Danger from Tagruato?

Ninety percent of adult smokers started smoking as kids. As court documents have shown, tobacco companies specifically marketed to children. It took a long time for the public conscience to catch on, but finally the days of Joe Camel, candy-flavored cigarettes, and ads in youth magazines were exposed for what they were -- a cynical gambit to condemn the most vulnerable segment of society to an abbreviated and poisonous life of servitude to Big Tobacco. But now there's a new menace, and it has taken a page right out of Big Tobacco's illicit playbook. This new player is again targeting the most vulnerable segment of society, our children, and they're doing it with cartoon character simplicity. Slusho!, with their mindless happy talk and mind numbing giggle have taken full advantage of society's complacency and unchecked, have specifically targeted children as their preferred guinea pigs.

Consider a study by the Ravaille Research Center that says the 'secret ingredient' of Slusho! drinks "has somehow evaded classification in any kind of international dietary database." Does that sound safe? Researchers tried to contact Tagruato's (Slusho!'s parent company) representatives, but received no response "despite repeat phone calls, emails, and an ill-fated office visit." What does Tagruato have to hide? When some samples were obtained and tested by the researchers they observed significant physiological changes in the subjects. If that wasn't enough, their tests also showed changes in the mental state of subjects. The symptoms are similar to those of drug abusers, particularly users of Methylenedioxymethamphetamine, commonly known as ecstasy.

A quick visit to the Tagruato site shows their robust claims of a coming "...animated television show starring the Slusho! Flavor Droids!." Now who will that show appeal to? Consider that one of their highly touted 'successes' is the sponsorship of Little League baseball team the Tagruato Lions.

Not yet concerned? Tagruato boasts "Making a box of crayons? ParafFun!" How many adults care about crayons? Surfboard wax? Paintballs? All activities for young people. Even the ParafFun! name and logo is designed to appeal to young people. But Tagruato's ParafFun! Wax company has apparently issued a massive recall of their products. Recent calls to corporate headquarters received a voicemail saying, "If you have questions concerning our ParafFun recall, please leave a message, and one of our associates will find and support you as soon as possible." Recalled for what purpose? They claim their product is edible. You only recall edible things when they are bad for people's health!

Tagruato has been expanding their empire aggressively across the globe. How widespread is the danger? The corporate site is not shy about their plans: "The next step is to introduce Slusho! to the rest of the world. A search is on for top marketing professionals who will be tasked with duplicating the drink's Asian popularity in the Western market. Our aspiration is to one day place Slusho! dispensers in every convenience store and mini mart. Slusho zoom!"

Tagruato is marketing to kids ten times more overtly than tobacco companies ever did, and the chemical side effects of their products could prove much worse, and much more immediate. The Slusho! site claims "We are coming, we'll find you soon." They are coming alright -- for your kids. Stop Tagruato now, before it's too late.


Tag fan said...

Stretching reality a bit here aren't we? Fringe groups only impugn their own credibility with such nefarious accusations.

Eddy said...

@Tag fan: So that's the full rebuttal? Why am I not surprised.

You're addicted to Slusho?? Notice the double question mark. The second is for the sentence, and the first replaces the brand name exclamation point! Can you guess at why a question mark is more appropriate? I won't hold my breath.

Tag fan said...

So you want a rebuttal? Brushing aside your not-so-subtle attempt to insult my intelligence I will attempt to respond with what you seek, don't know how long Blogger let's comments go so we'll see.

1. You make a pretty bad analogy to Big Tobacco with only hearsay and conjecture to back it up. Let's examine.

Consider a study by the Ravaille Research Center
A study by who? Oh yeah, Dr. Abe. About as credible a source as this blog. Considering the outright fantasy that the report contained its no wonder the "researchers" were ignored.

Consider that one of their highly touted 'successes' is the sponsorship of Little League baseball team the Tagruato Lions.

So it is now wrong, perhaps a "bioethical crime" to support the community that derives benefit from profitable enterprises such as Tagruato?

When some samples were obtained and tested by the researchers they observed significant physiological changes in the subjects.

So does Coca Cola, a the vast array of sugary drinks and snacks widely available worldwide, but most specifically in the United States. No other nation has a bigger problem with childhood obesity, and Slusho! didn't cause that.

animated television show starring the Slusho! Flavor Droids!.

Marketing, plain and simple. The success of cartoon shows in the United States and elsewhere shows this to be a good strategy. Examples abound of shows that could be construed as aimed at children having success with an adult market (The Simpsons, SpongeBob, AquaTeen, the list is indeed long)

How many adults care about crayons? Surfboard wax? Paintballs

I'll give you crayons but paintballing and surfing are both activities that appeal to a wide age range.

The overzealous assumptions in your article should be obvious to any consumer now, if they weren't already. I look forward to your ill-thought out response.

Tag fan said...

@eddt: Apologies if this isn't "your" article. Regardless, it is certainly written by one of your hippie cronies.

Tag fan said...

Where's my rebuttal? Can't handle the truth?

Eddy said...

Glad I wasn't holding my breath. Really all you need to do to win the day Tag fan, is to prove Slusho? is safe and non-addictive. Because you can't, and because Tagruato won't (hmmm, I wonder why?), you're pissing into the wind. Apologies for the terse response, but the idea of parsing the age suitability of paintball in light of the grave danger we're confronting is asking a bit much.

Tag fan said...

I have to prove the negative whilst you rely on a shady "report" and "research" to bolster your position. I don't have access to the evidence you require, but that certainly doesn't mean that Tagruato is up to no good. It's a non-sequitur.

Eddy said...

Dear tag fan: The article we are debating is entitled "Are Your Kids in Danger from Tagruato?" Should you have passed on criticism of the articles because you don't have access to evidence clearing Tagruato? Of course not. But the same standard applies to us, and where we have little evidence in support of our position, you have none. Why has Tagruato left you, their budding defender, so ill equipped to defend them? That is a very good question. It is one that you should be asking. Assuming you're not a corporate shill, The Effect has no beef with you and encourages you to believe as you will. But we'd also encourage you to engage and get to know your friend Tagruato as willingly as you are engaging us, the supposed enemy.

Piccard said...

11° 19′ 0″ N, 142° 15′ 0 - All you gotta do is look for the ooze. Tagruato is using this ooze in Slusho! It is a disgusting mixture of ocean waste. MY GOD PEOPLE, THEY ARE FEEDING YOU GARBAGE AND YOU PAY FOR IT!

Nick said...

Tag Fan,

I wrote the article, and I and the AllYourBloggers organization stand by it. It is a simple question - Are Your Kids In Danger from Tagruato?. It is not a research paper, or a finding of proof. You are reading too much into the article. We point out questions from a variety of sources. Recalls by the company themself. Indisputable evidence of their marketing tactics. And then just ask the question? Why are you so energized to come to their defense. Do you in fact work for them? Perhaps an investor, supplier or partner?

What's wrong with asking obvious questions? But then, perhaps Mr. Ichigawa asked a few too many questions, and Tagruato Inc couldn't have that, eh?