Choice of Words: Candidates and Framing

Okay, I just finished a 14 hour flight from Manila to Las Vegas, sitting in a middle seat in the middle row of an Airbus 340.  I've had a lot of time to think.  When I cam here and read the new comments I learned a few things:

1) Vox Populi is a douche who unfairly brings up Obama's implicit support for the Iraq War.

2) Edwards and his supporters are racists who want to bring back the poll tax.

3) Many Obama supporters don't understand how a candidate can say one thing and it means something else.

There's more...

Frank Luntz and the Big Idea

Cross-posted from The Texas Blue

Frank Luntz's verbal sorcery cannot be trusted. On Sunday, the Washington Post ran an op/ed by Luntz about what's wrong with Republicans and why they seem to be terrible at politics lately. He points to all of the actual reasons -- the war, the budget, the wedge politics -- but he prescribes more of the same behavior for Republicans, asserting that it is what Americans want. I, surprisingly enough, disagree.

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Reframing Ann Coulter's "Faggot" comment

I think it's time that Liberals admit that we are all fagots, as Ann Coulter uses the word.  She can see right through us, since knows how to identify those characteristics that separate us from real men.  

please, go along with this for a while without feeling excluded. Ill try to pull this together at the end.

John Edwards is only the most recent of our political hierarchy that she has outed.  Previously she has said, "Bill Clinton shows some level of latent homosexuality," and called Vice President Al Gore a "total fag." 

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Escalation: Five Questions and Their "Yes, BUT" Answers

My work as a psychologist suggests that five core concerns often dominate our individual and collective lives. These concerns revolve around issues of vulnerability, injustice, distrust, superiority, and helplessness. Briefly, for most of us nothing is more powerful than the desire to protect and provide security for the people and things we care about (vulnerability). We often react to perceived mistreatment with anger and resentment, and an urge to right wrongs and punish those we hold responsible (injustice). We tend to divide the world into those who are trustworthy and those unworthy of our trust, in an effort to avoid harm from people with hostile intentions (distrust). We frequently aspire to be better than others in some important way--perhaps in our accomplishments, or our morality, or our destiny (superiority). Finally, we strive to avoid the experience of helplessness, and instead do our best to control the important events in our lives (helplessness).

Political leaders should be responsive to these five core concerns in identifying broadly shared goals and pursuing positive social change. Unfortunately, the Bush administration and its supporters have instead chosen to exploit these concerns in an effort to promote their own narrow ideological agenda. Perhaps the most tragic example is the profoundly ill-advised and costly war in Iraq.

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Frame this: thoughts on the messaging thing

There's been a lot of talk the last few years about the importance of "framing" issues so that progressive messages get across. You could even say that this has become a micro-industry in some circles.

There is a lot of research that indicates that the how of communication is as important as--sometimes more important than--the what. And no one would dispute the importance of skilled messaging and
media work.

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