This discussion could launch students into their own exploration of how particular magazine and web advertising constructs their niche audiences. We should ask: Who is the target audience?; Who does the advertiser think the audience is?; As suggested by the ads, what does the audience want, what kind of people are they?; What production values and details of the ad tell you about the audience?; How does the construction of the audience in the ads compare to reality?
To help you get started: here is a link to the ad blog featuring the armored limousine ad that Colbert discusses; a link to the Yacht magazine, and this is a pdf file of the yacht ad and a detail pdf of the yacht ad text from the video clip; a link to a luxury blog featuring the RV in the clip; a link to the Yahoo news article on the artificial libertarian islands.
And, if your class is a bit more in the know about the OWS movement, this clip can be a way to discuss how the plight and rhetoric of this group is co-opted by their adversary. In terms of civics, history and political philosophy, the idea of the tyranny of the majority and the concepts of majority and minority are important theme in the media texts targeting the rich. Are minority and majority matters of power or numbers, or both? How are these concepts used to influence hearts and minds? This Colbert clip would also make a great starting point for an exploration of the current OWS protest movement in terms of both their rhetorical/communication strategies and media representation. In turn, this could lead to an examination of the rhetorical strategies and media representations of historical protest movements.