Survival and Mumbling

This is a simple observation I made while sitting on the porch today.  I don't have stats to back this up but perhaps someone else does:

Have you noticed the ability that many men have of not hearing what we don't want to hear?  You know, your significant other says something and you don't even acknowledge the words, they just flow right by.  Well, why is that?  I believe it has something to do with our primal hunting instincts, it is a sound we are familiar with and don't acknowledge it as a threat.  In other words men are more tuned into sounds, talk, stories, having to do with survival.

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Frameshop: Rummy Launches New Campaign

[In light of the discussion about ads and the 'accountability' message, I am cross posting this from Frameshop--a proposal on how to re-frame Rumsfeld's "Nazi" comments into campaign ads for Progressive Democrats --JF]

This week, Don Rumsfeld accused Americans of appeasing fascists in the Middle East--in the same way that the Europeans appeased Hitler in the 1930s.   It was classic Rummy on the campaign stump:  Criticize our policy?   Atomic bombs will fall on your are encouraging the us we're wrong and you will all die, Die, DIE!!

Then, as is usual practice for the Bush Administration,  after accusing the American public of endangering the nation--Rumsfeld's aides immediately denied that he said anything of the sort.  In response, Democratic leader Harry Reid issued a statement calling Rumsfeld's comments reckless.

But how should Progressives reframe this?  They can change the frame from 'Nazis' to Republican fear of being held accountable for what they have done.  But the word 'accountable' and 'accountability' or so unwieldy, so technocratic.  It is much better to respond to Rumsfeld's outlandish Nazi comments by saying something along these lines:

  • Rumsfeld is campaigning again
  • Rumsfeld is afraid Democrats are about to regain control of Congress
  • Rumseld is worried he will soon have to answer for what he has done
  • Nothing scares Rumsfeld more that the fear of facing the American people
  • Facing the prospect of answering to the American people, Rumsfeld will accuse us of more and more outlandish crimes
  • Rumsfeld is lashing out like a cornered thief
  • The more he senses he might have to answer for his crimes, the more he will accuse his accusers

Rumsfeld's campaign against Americans is a sign that he is looking up the road and sees himself sitting at a table in front of a Congressional committee chaired by Democrats.  And the more he senses that reality about to drop on him, the more he will up the ante in the PR war to cast Americans as treasonous turncoats.

And Progressives should keep turning up the heat.

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Constructive Criticism of John Edwards's Rhetoric

Crossposted at DailyKos and Street Prophets

John Edwards is trying to convince America that we can end poverty.  The fact that he is serious about this goal - and that he is making it the centerpiece of his likely presidential run - shows that he understands exactly what it means to be a Democratic leader - and that he has the potential to become one of our country's greatest leaders.

It's with that great potential in mind that I think it's very important to consider some constructive criticism of his rhetoric.  I'm focusing on his recent National Press Club speech which centered on his anti-poverty theme. (His prepared speech is here; audio of speech, here.)

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Frameshop: Lamont and the 3 Ps of Progressive Politics

The more I read about the Lamont campaign in the press, the more I realize that Big Media and DC insiders do not yet get what is happening. 

Look at any newspaper or watch any TV report about the race, and one would think voters in Connecticut were turning out for a ballot resolution on Iraq.  They are not.

What is happening in Connecticut--really happening?  Ned Lamont has come to embody the 3 Ps of Progressive politics:  Principle, Protection, and Participation.

And win or lose the primary (he will win!)--Progressive politics has taken off.  And there is no turning back.

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Frameshop: The Hamburglars vs. Ned Lamont

As Connecticut Senate hopeful Ned Lamont began a campaign stop, yesterday, at Ted's in Meriden, CT--home of the original famous steamed burgers--the spotlight was suddenly stolen out from under him by an unruly group of Joe Lieberman supporters who had slipped into the diner incognito for just such a sneak attack.

Oh no, America!  Just when we thought Ned Lamont had made it safe again for the people to participate in government, Joe Lieberman sends in---the Hamburglars!!!

That's right, folks.  Joe Lieberman's latest madcapped attempt to stop the people of Connecticut from participating in politics is not to debate Ned Lamont, not to tell the people of Connecticut why he ignores them--but to hamburgle the election.

What do the Hamburglars do?  They do everything they can to steal the election from the people of Connecticut and give it to the incumbent.

What can supporters of Ned Lamont do to stop the Hamburglars?

Here is a 3-step plan to quickly turn Lieberman's Hamburglars into an asset for the Lamont campaign.

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