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War of the Words
Author: BobR    Date: 10/10/2007 12:16:13

It's been discussed many times on the internets and on our TV machines that Republicans have fine-tuned the science of words. They call a pro-pollution bill the "Clear Skies Initiative". They've demonized the noble ideology of being "liberal". They've conflated Iraq and Osama bin Laden by combining them under the umbrella term of "The War on Terror".

But it goes beyond creating simple (yet deceptive) soundbites. It goes beyond "framing the debate". The key to their success (and the key to Democrats hope for success) is to "personalize" issues, to appeal to voters emotions, for it is there that most voters make their decisions. It doesn't matter how good a 14 point plan is if a candidate can't evoke an emotional response to the plan within the voter.

So says Drew Weston, P.H.D. He spoke to the N. Fulton Democrats last night, and I was there to listen. He is a professor, a consultant, and the author of several books including his latest The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation.

He rarely spoke of policy; rather, he gave examples of how the brain is wired to associate sometimes disparate things. Studies have shown that it is this association (such as liberal=weak) that guides voters, and it's something that the Democrats must master. That doesn't mean being dishonest or manipulative (we'll leave that to the Republicans). It means couching issues not just in simple positive terms, but in emotionally positive terms that resonate personally with the voters.

He gave numerous examples throughout the talk; here are a few of them:
  • Guns: Not "Gun Control" (people don't like being controlled), but "common-sense gun laws".
  • Abortion: If your daughter was raped, would you want her to see the rapist's eyes every time she looked in the eyes of the baby? Making it illegal is the same as a Rapist Bill of Rights.
  • Universal Health Care: A family doctor for every family. It's also pro-business, because companies don't have to provide it. It would make it easier for them to compete with companies in other countries where healthcare is provided by the government.
  • Taxes: If you like to have bridges collapsing, then vote Republican - look at the great job they've done with the infrastructure so far.
  • Education: Public education isn't a cost - our children are our greatest investment.
  • Role of Government: Would a company hire a CEO that hated business? Why would you elect a politician that hates government (and wants to "drown it in a bathtub")?
  • Regulation & Business: Companies that are good citizens will thrive under any government. Companies that pollute and cheat and mistreat workers will only thrive under a Republican government.
  • Support The Troops: I hope everyone here already knows this one (it means providing them with armor and not cutting their benefits and not sending your children when they won't send their own) - so why don't the politicians?

Of course - this is a shorthand list that's best fleshed out by using more personal examples. We're all passionate about our positions, and a majority of the population would be too, when shown to them in the proper light. I plan to buy the book so I can get to the point where this becomes second nature. I hope you will too (hey - it's been recommended by Bill Clinton and Howard Dean). :)

60 comments (Latest Comment: 10/11/2007 01:36:27 by livingonli)
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Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 12:47:19
morning, folks... :coffee:

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:10:12
Good morning everyone.

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:13:11
Does Glenn Beck's wardbrobe desecrate the flag? Tri?

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:14:31
CSI: Barstow.

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 13:27:24
Quote by livingonli:

CSI: Barstow.


CSI: Sheboygan - starring David Hasselhoff and Jamie Gertz

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:35:43
Quote by BobR:

Quote by livingonli:

CSI: Barstow.


CSI: Sheboygan - starring David Hasselhoff and Jamie Gertz


CSI: Wilkes-Barre.

CSI: Worcestor

CSI: Chapel Hill



Gee, can we expand that franchise or what?

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:40:16
Isn't giving out people's addresses in order to harass them a Nazi tactic?

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 13:40:38
Quote by livingonli:

Quote by BobR:

Quote by livingonli:

CSI: Barstow.


CSI: Sheboygan - starring David Hasselhoff and Jamie Gertz


CSI: Wilkes-Barre.

CSI: Worcestor

CSI: Chapel Hill



Gee, can we expand that franchise or what?




CSI: Fargo...

"That looks like a snowboot print, eh?"

"Oh ya - you bet..."

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 13:41:41
Quote by livingonli:

Isn't giving out people's addresses in order to harass them a Nazi tactic?




It's terrorism....



"Let this be a warning to everyone else"

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:48:02
Quote by BobR:

Quote by livingonli:

Isn't giving out people's addresses in order to harass them a Nazi tactic?




It's terrorism....



"Let this be a warning to everyone else"


The neo-Nazi web sites gave out the addresses of the Jena 6 for the same purpose.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 13:55:45
Very nice blog there BobR!!! Good morning!!!

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 13:56:30
Good morning Raine.

Comment by wickedpam on 10/10/2007 14:02:07
Morning!

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:04:05
Good morning Mala.

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:05:21
Quote by livingonli:

Does Glenn Beck's wardbrobe desecrate the flag? Tri?




Huh? What did I miss?



Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:10:21
Quote by TriSec:

Quote by livingonli:

Does Glenn Beck's wardbrobe desecrate the flag? Tri?




Huh? What did I miss?



At the beginning of the show, Momma mentioned the one sweater mentioned on Glenn Beck's show.



It's on the blog page of stephaniemiller.com if you want to see it for yourself.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:11:30
:rofl: Oh that larry Craig makes me laugh for hours on end1!!!

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:11:54
How many 70's songs are being re-written in honor of Larry Craig?

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:12:44
ANother story posted here on les blog!

Comment by wickedpam on 10/10/2007 14:17:09
Heya Liv and everyone!

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:19:17
I believe these would be the relevant sections of the US flag code in this instance...



Section 176:



(d) The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free. Bunting of blue, white, and red, always arranged with the blue above, the white in the middle, and the red below, should be used for covering a speaker's desk, draping the front of the platform, and for decoration in general.



(i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.



(j) No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform. However, a flag patch may be affixed to the uniform of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations. The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing. Therefore, the lapel flag pin being a replica, should be worn on the left lapel near the heart.

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 14:22:04
Quote by TriSec:

(i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.



like postage stamps?...

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:24:34
I noticed dcrtv.com also has separate pages for New York/Philadelphia and Boston/New England TV-radio news.

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:25:11
Hmm....



Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:29:33
Another republican carreer stalled and flushed down the toilet...

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:36:54
I don't like using public men's rooms myself when I have to go.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:39:52
YOu see, Fred is doing the exact same thing that BobR was talking about in the blog today. Talk to the passion of the base. Keep it simple and make sure people don't think, becuase you apeal to the emotions... (and in the case of republicanisn, lie)

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:40:41
LIe, LIE, LIE... Rudy lies.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:43:40
The fight for existance and civilization, huh Fred? Then why do we have less than 200,000 troops to save the world??? What a joke.

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:44:28
Quote by Raine:

LIe, LIE, LIE... Rudy lies.


Must keep people scared because that's the only reason they will vote for us.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:46:55
PRince!!! woohoo!!1

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:47:32
It's not purple, but this will have to do! ---> <---

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 14:47:49
Quote by Raine:

Prince!!! woohoo!!




The Purple one... ;)



Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:48:20
Ooh, that was rather Pavlovian, wasn't it?



Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:49:01
I think that that Laugh may become the new Howard dean scream...

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:50:47
The Rob Reiner Video.

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 14:52:50
Mitt on Iran Authorization..."Let the Lawyers sort it out'


Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 14:55:26
The 3-part episode where the Bradys went to Tel Aviv.

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 14:59:44
*snort*



I haven't complained about WebMD in such a long time...mainly because they changed their name a ways back to "Emdeon" (or "Emdemon, thanks MGM!).



Just thought of another one..."Phlegmdeon".





Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 15:05:10
Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 15:05:42
The mayor of Atlantic City has resigned. I guess he turned back up to quit. He is citing health problems.

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 15:08:38
Quote by TriSec:

*snort*



I haven't complained about WebMD in such a long time...mainly because they changed their name a ways back to "Emdeon" (or "Emdemon, thanks MGM!).



Just thought of another one..."Phlegmdeon".







Bend-over-and-get-reamed-eon

Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 15:14:27
Quote by livingonli:

The mayor of Atlantic City has resigned. I guess he turned back up to quit. He is citing health problems.




Financial health? Mental health?



Political health?

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 15:16:11
Quote by BobR:

Quote by livingonli:

The mayor of Atlantic City has resigned. I guess he turned back up to quit. He is citing health problems.




Financial health? Mental health?



Political health?


The latter two. He is still under investigation for corruption.



Corruption in Atlantic City? Gee, aren't I shocked!

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 15:17:40
Huckabee: Rivals Might consider suicide Oh, Chortle chortle... that Huckster is such a jokester.... Didn't he make a joke about concentration camps a few months ago?

Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 15:18:47
YEs another story Posted on the Message board...

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 15:46:53
Ya know, for Halloween this year, I thought I'd put up an effigy of Christ nailed to a cross, and display some biblical scenes of Christians being persecuted by the Romans.



Wonder how that would fly in Republicanland?





Comment by Raine on 10/10/2007 15:53:02
Oh man... Tri... that sounds awesome!

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 15:55:27
Man-vira??????





Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 16:00:00
Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 18:32:26
It looks like this blog is encased in salt.

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 18:36:40
*sigh*



So how come I can listen to the CBC Maritimes podcast in exactly the 25 minutes or so that the podcast lasts, but when I try to listen to an hour and fifteen minutes of Dr. Maddow, it usually takes me about 4 hours?



:kickcan:



Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 19:00:07
Quote by livingonli:

It looks like this blog is encased in salt.


Just got back from lunch...



But work has been extra-salty lately... I need to win the Lotto or something...

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 19:07:35
Quote by BobR:

Quote by livingonli:

It looks like this blog is encased in salt.


Just got back from lunch...



But work has been extra-salty lately... I need to win the Lotto or something...


So do I. It certainly would help pay my bills.

Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 19:18:23
Did anyone listen to Dr. Maddow last night?



It's Marc Maron.....is this for real?



He's just now talking about a partnership between the credit card companies and the military where if you're hopelessly in debt you'll be able to enlist and "pay off" your credit cards via military service. A so-called "Debtor's Army".



What is this, the middle ages?





Comment by TriSec on 10/10/2007 19:34:44
OK, I heard the next segment; Marc made that up.



But it really irritates me that this is completely plausible in this day and age. Is there nothing, no farce, no satire, no spoof, that is so far beyond the pale that we won't think that BushCo could even consider it?





Comment by BobR on 10/10/2007 20:09:21
Quote by TriSec:

OK, I heard the next segment; Marc made that up.



But it really irritates me that this is completely plausible in this day and age. Is there nothing, no farce, no satire, no spoof, that is so far beyond the pale that we won't think that BushCo could even consider it?







BushCo has made hyperbole and satire obsolete. The writers for The Onion must be scratching their heads... :scratch:

Comment by livingonli on 10/10/2007 21:14:37
Tonight not too much work here because Versus is doing the Islanders-Rangers game tonight so we can't.

Comment by TriSec on 10/11/2007 01:04:01
Evening, folks. Anyone around for the mythbusters?



Livin, you have anything to do with the Celtics' London feed this evening?



Or Da Broons from San Jose later?



A particularly trying day at the mines. We're fully staffed, yes, but not fully trained. And a dear lady friend seems to be having man troubles, but she didn't offer up details today, only cryptic comments.



It's my 'office spouse', I'm worried about her, she's been under a lot of stress this year.



Anyway....I guess it's a good thing I love my wife. And these. :martini:



Comment by livingonli on 10/11/2007 01:36:27
Hey Tri. We have nothing to do with NESN. Actually, they are playing Anaheim tonight. San Jose is playing Chicago. We do have that game for the Sharks.



The 4-12 crew is more clustered these days so I pretty much do MSG and FSN New York. But, we still have FSN (now Comcast SportsNet) New England and they are preparing to revamp that into and HD/SD hybrid control room since Comcast wants to do more stuff in HD.