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George Lakoff warns why we should not become complacent about the 2012 election despite the fact that the candidates the GOP has offered are wackier than a night at the comedy club.

The Republican presidential campaign is about a lot more than the campaign for the presidency. It is about guaranteeing a radical conservative future for America

The Santorum Strategy is not just about Santorum. It is about pounding the most radical conservative ideas into the public mind by constant repetition during the Republican presidential campaign.

Newt Gingrich says this is the most important election since the 1860's. Rick Santorum says if a Republican isn't elected in November the America you know and love will be lost. Mitt Romney says the stakes have never been higher. It's a battle for the soul of America.

The Republican presidential campaign is not just about the presidential race. It is about using conservative language to strengthen conservative values in the brains of voters
George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan were mocked as candidates but they changed the public discourse and with it, how Americans thought. George Lakoff argues that the Republican presidential campaign has to be seen in this light. The same naiveté about messaging, public discourse, and effects on brains is now showing up in liberal discussions of the Republican presidential campaign.

You've heard the phrase 'there's no bad publicity'. George Lakoff applies it with a twist to the Republican campaign. Liberal press and blogs have reveled in ridiculing the clown car goat rodeo that is the GOP Presidential campaign and written thousands upon thousands of words about it. And this is all to the Republicans' benefit.  It doesn't matter if it's Santorum, Gingrich, or Rommey saying it, what matters is that their concepts are getting air time. Their outrageousness is part of the strategy.

The Republican presidential campaign is not just about the presidential race. It is about using conservative language to strengthen conservative values in the brains of voters -- in campaigns at all levels from Congress to school boards. Part of the Republican strategy is to get liberals to argue against them, repeating conservative language.

Regardless of who says it,  by constantly repeating them, the concepts are reinforced in the minds of voters. It doesn't matter if the conversation is negative or positive, conservative ideas are activated in the brain and this subconsciously strengthens the brain circuitry that characterizes conservative values.

Many Democrats are reacting either with glee ("their field is so ridiculously weak and wacky." -- Maureen Dowd), with outrage (their deficit-reduction proposals would actually raise the deficit -- Paul Krugman), or with incredulity ("Why we're debating a woman's access to birth control is beyond me." -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz). Hendrik Hertzberg dismissed the ultra-conservatives as "a kick line of clowns, knaves, and zealots." Joe Nocera wrote that he hopes Santorum would be the Republican candidate, claiming that he is so far to the right that he would be "crushed" -- an "epic defeat," "shock therapy" that would bring back moderate Republicans. Democrats even voted for Santorum in the Michigan primary on the grounds that he would be the weaker candidate and that it would be to the Democrats' advantage if the Republican race dragged on for a long time.
He says the antidote to this is to counter with positive messaging promoting liberal moral values. Expressing, and repeating them, just like the conservatives do. He goes on to explain that there is "a failure to understand the difference between policy and morality, that morality beats policy, and that moral discourse is absolutely necessary".  The Democrats lost the House in 2010 because Republicans beat them with moral arguments ('freedom' and 'life) about Obamacare, even though people agreed with the policy contained in the legislation.

And the moral values of a basic progressive moral system are empathy and responsibility (both personal and others').  This contrasts with the authoritarian values of conservatives structured around a strict father, i.e. The Decider. Rick Santorum is tapping directly into the father figure mother lode.  He says Democrats are missing the bigger picture of the next election.  

Democrats are concentrating on the presidential race, hoping that if Obama wins, as it looks like he will, all will be fine. They are missing the bigger picture. The Democratic strategy of getting the independent women's vote for Obama is not sufficient, because independent women may still vote for their local conservative leaders as the strict fathers they want to see in office.
He finally reminds the reader that
The Santorum Strategy does not end with this election. It is part of a permanent campaign that has been going on since the Gingrich revolution of 1994, and will continue into the indefinite future.
And warns that Democrats tend to be literalists, but can't afford to make that mistake again in 2012.

Originally posted to Barefoothoofcare on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:55 AM PDT.

Also republished by Systems Thinking.

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    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:55:55 AM PDT

  •  Yep 40 Years Have Proven Democrats Seize Every (152+ / 0-)
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    excuse to move to the right. That's why I've been more horrified than delighted at this year's "clown" show. It's the mother of all excuses.

    Then there's the fact that by wisely avoiding a primary of our own, we successfully kept progressive ideas out of the main public conversation for most of the 2 year campaign cycle, ceding the dominant conversation to the rightwingers.

    And finally, what they're doing in this exercise of madness is aimed more downticket than at the long-shot White House. They'll take it if they can get it, and they certainly have the assets to govern through a clueless true believer should one stumble in through the election, but they're clearly working to build on 2010.

    They're capable of screwing it up, but the basic strategy is very plausible.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:02:17 AM PDT

    •  Me too it is NOT funny at all nt (26+ / 0-)

      The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

      by a2nite on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:33:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Did you mean to put a sentence this way? (12+ / 0-)
      Then there's the fact that by wisely avoiding a primary of our own, we successfully kept progressive ideas out of the main public conversation for most of the 2 year campaign cycle, ceding the dominant conversation to the rightwingers.

      liberal bias = failure to validate or sufficiently flatter the conservative narrative on any given subject

      by RockyMtnLib on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:46:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think OWS has changed that chemistry, (68+ / 0-)

        significantly, which is why it has to maintain it's nonviolent character.
        It will quickly get marginalized by destructiveness.
        It really made a major incursion into the "news cycle" and the "narrative" in its first year.
        Hopefully it's just getting started, and will broaden its horizons to affect the mainstream media more directly.

        I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

        by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:56:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  As I've noted before (11+ / 0-)

          The right has been anything but non-violent and it hasn't hurt them.  Not that OWS should be violent, I'm just saying that some windows getting broken in Oakland is hardly comparable to the murders that have been committed by anti-abortion activists.

          There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:00:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This is dangerous thinking, imo. It assumes a (19+ / 0-)

            truly balanced rationality, in which people (voters) calmly compare the "two sides."

            Fox can make a BB window-breaking spree look like a mob of hate-filled liberals trying to destroy America.  Remember Bill Ayers?

            Please don't defend violence.  Occupy's depending on us and you to keep it clean.  This is too important for game-playing.

            •  Would the people watching Fox *ever* (5+ / 0-)

              support Occupy?  I really, really doubt it.  More than that we need to stop all this worrying about what the other side thinks.  That's exactly what this article is about. Oh god!  Fox is going to talk shit about me!  I must be doing something right.

              Please don't defend violence.
              I'm not defending violence, I'm merely saying that being hysterical about it ruining a movement isn't going to help matters.  Occupy Oakland is going to continue to be rowdy, you and I can't stop that.  It's best to deal with it in a rational way rather than with broad statements about how any violence destroys any chance of a movement achieving its goals, which I see far to often here.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:04:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  It's not about the Fox viewers. (15+ / 0-)

                It's about the Fox spin leaking into the rest of the media, and becoming part of the general wisdom, just like Lakoff discusses in the diary.

                In a society with any sort of collective conscience (meaning, not Somalia), non-violence is the most effective extra-governmental political tactic there is. That's why Gandhi was able to bring the mighty British Empire to its knees and MLK Jr. was able to shame the US Congress into passing the Civil Right Act and the Voting Rights Act. In fact, it's why any of us are still paying attention to OWS: the video of cops beating up on and pepper-spraying unresisting protestors tells the world a story of determination and self-discipline. Eyes on the prize, as it were.

                If you want to delegitimize OWS in the eyes of the American people, keep on breaking windows and/or apologizing for window-breaking. The only way to keep Fox from spinning that behavior right out to the general public is not to allow it to begin with.

                "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:17:26 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Right. When that leak occurs, it validates what's (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
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                  on Fox for the Fox viewers. If the rest of the media plays it straight, that then marginalizes Fox, and Fox viewers can't change channels or even leave their couch and go to the coffeeshop without dealing with their cognitive dissonance.
                  But the former happens more than the latter, these days.

                  I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

                  by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:25:15 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The former happens (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    David54, eXtina, BigDuck

                    almost all the time. If it didn't, only Fox viewers would be voting Republican, and George Lakoff wouldn't be running around tearing out what little hair he has left.

                    "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                    by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:30:24 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  If you want to delegitimize OWS (3+ / 0-)
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                  orestes1963, KenBee, eXtina

                  then hang out in a park like a bunch of dirty hippies.  Or do any number, or really everything, that OWS actually did.

                  If you want to delegitimize OWS in the eyes of the American people, keep on breaking windows and/or apologizing for window-breaking. The only way to keep Fox from spinning that behavior right out to the general public is not to allow it to begin with.
                  We don't need a majority of people to support our tactics, we need them to support our goals.  And they do.  This isn't a popularity contest and it isn't a sprint.  If we worry about what tactics everyone thinks are appropriate and police the movement to make sure everyone adheres to those then we will get absolutely nothing done except to tear apart the movement.

                  And honestly, it's getting harder and harder for me to take seriously advice about movement building and PR.  It's pretty obvious that paying attention to all that has done absolutely nothing for other contemporary groups.  That was the point of bringing up the anti-abortion crowd.  If a group that consistently justifies murder can be as successful as they have been then I really don't see why I need to worry about some broken windows.

                  There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                  by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:37:07 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  A quick apology (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
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                  I really didn't mean for that opening line to be as dismissive as it was.  I've just heard the exact same complaints so many times that I tend to get in that mind set too easily.

                  There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                  by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:42:54 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Your take on Gandhi and MLK is naive and wrong (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  AoT, Plantsmantx, eXtina

                  There was a climate of simmering violence behind both of these activists.  MLK did not operate in a vacuum.  There was increasing social unrest that played a role in the passage of those statutes.  Gandhi used the potential for violence given the disparity in numbers to his advantage.  Drop the saintly leader BS and read up on history.

                  •  Simmering violence? (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    KenBee, eXtina

                    There was outright riots in the US and armed action in India against the Brits.

                    There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                    by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:54:27 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Riots have generally hurt the communities in which (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      eXtina, RockyMtnLib, sidnora

                      the riots occurred. Stores were closed and didn't return, etc.
                      The violence gives the authorities the excuse to clamp down quickly on the violent as well as the nonviolent protestors.
                      If someone wants to riot, they should expect that their own butts are on the line and not try to hijack a peaceful protest.
                      I don't think most of the people who care about DKos want it to be turned into a site where people incite violence and stimulate a bunch of pie wars about whether we should be advocating violence or not.
                      A broken window here or there is not going to send me into a fainting spell, but I think as a general rule, what is most effective and  important about OWS is that it broke the juju about discussing income inequality and the class warfare from the rich.
                      Just because there were outbreaks of undirected rage in the past doesn't mean we can't take our anger and focus it and use it in a constructive way.

                      I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

                      by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 04:54:18 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I'm not saying the riots were good (3+ / 0-)
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                        eXtina, joe wobblie, DavidMS

                        I'm just saying that the violence wasn't simmering.  And it does history a disservice to ignore the fact that all non-violent movements took place at the same time that violence was going on.  I've seen people outright say that any movement that includes violence is bound to fail, which is absurd.

                        And no, we shouldn't be advocating violence, here or elsewhere, but neither should we spend hours extolling the virtues of the perfectly peaceful civil rights era completely ignoring history, while spending far too much time going on and on about some broken windows.

                        I know you don't do that, but some here do.

                        There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                        by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:16:03 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  One more time (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          joe wobblie, eXtina

                          I never "extol(led) the virtues of the perfectly peaceful civil rights era".

                          I lived through it. It wasn't peaceful by a long shot, you're right. But the non-violent leader was the one who got things done. Think about that.

                          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                          by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:06:48 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  You're right, you didn't (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            eXtina

                            I have seen others do it, and unfortunately I don't have links, but I shouldn't imply that you did.  This movement does not and will not have a leader, for a number of reasons.  It also won't be completely non-violent, again for a number of reasons.  That's just how it is. Because of that I think it's a better use of our time to talk about the useful things we can do and organize to do those things rather than dwell on the "smashy smashy".

                            There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                            by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:10:05 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Sorry I got back too late (0+ / 0-)

                            to tip.

                            After participating in, and observing, direct political action for almost 50 years, I've come to the conclusion that disciplined non-violence is the most effective strategic tool for actually bringing change. At least, that's true if you're doing it in a country with basic levels of civility. It wouldn't work very well in Somalia, for instance.

                            Violence from the left, which the right was quick to capitalize on, helped propel the non-politicized center of this country into Richard Nixon's, and later, Ronald Reagan's arms, from which we have yet to extricate ourselves. I have also seen the personal cost of such violence: one of the people who died here was a relative of mine.

                            "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                            by sidnora on Fri Mar 16, 2012 at 08:01:30 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  We do need to acknowledge the facts that some (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          eXtina, AoT

                          of our social progress came because the establishment feared a communist workers' revolution (30's) and a general breakdown into anarchy (60's).
                          Now we do not have communism as a threat, we do have the "social media revolution" of the "Arab Spring".
                          This is how we are evolving as a society, and global species.
                          The Syrian situation shows us that, while the people have solidarity in massive numbers in Syria, they don't have cohesion enough to develop a self-defense strategy against the authorities (the best strategy would be to have more of the army and gov. authorities defect.)
                          We have to have that general loose cohesion between different groups who may differ on specific items.
                          The problem with violence now is that it will splinter the "coalitions" that exist defacto, and there is a high likelihood that certain more authoritarian elements will actually be trying to incite destruction and violence for that reason.
                          You can have the equivalent of "war" thinking in terms of strategy and tactics and focus without having violence.

                          I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

                          by David54 on Thu Mar 15, 2012 at 06:55:31 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                  •  Strategic Nonviolent Action is not the same (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Plantsmantx, eXtina, sidnora, David54

                    as passivity or saintliness etc.

                    And the contrast of groups using strategic nonviolent action (such as OWS) when compared with the violence of either the established powers (law enforcement)  or other, violence-using, opposition forces is always part of what gives movements using Strategic nonviolent action their effectiveness and attractiveness to the public.  

                    The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

                    by Into The Woods on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 04:21:13 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I am well aware of what the backdrop was (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    eXtina

                    I was an adult during the civil rights movement, and what I was describing wasn't "saintly leader BS". It was that both Gandhi and MLK Jr were able to present the more popularly acceptable non-violent alternative, and they both achieved their goals, more or less.

                    Or, in FDR's (apocryphal) quote, "Deal with me or you'll have to deal with them". OWS needs to decide whether they're the "me" or the "them" in that equation.

                    "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                    by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:03:49 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I'd rec this but for the title & the last 2 (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    eXtina

                    sentences.  The rest is really good and worth noting, imo.

                    But really both were saintly leaders.  You got something against saintly leaders?

                    More like courageous, imo.  

                    •  Courageous, yes. (0+ / 0-)

                      Saintly, no. Both had personal failings that have been well documented (by the FBI, in the case of MLK Jr.). They were, after all, human beings like the rest of us, but exceptionally perceptive, implacable and brave human beings.

                      I think saints are vastly overreported, and the few that exist tend be more notable as exemplars of personal virtue than as leaders. Leadership requires different qualities than sainthood; we need both.

                      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

                      by sidnora on Sat Mar 17, 2012 at 08:29:31 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

              •  I don't disagree with you in theory, (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                eXtina, David54

                But the primary reason to keep it as non violent as possible is that there are many, many folks who agree with Occupy who won't take their families or themselves to a local protest if they think there's a likelihood of getting hurt.  Letting the rowdies get out of hand will lessen the number of supporters who will show up.  And showing up in numbers too big to ignore is what makes the movement visible, and viable

              •  yes, they will (0+ / 0-)

                they will support the ideas of Occupy and hell, even Democrats and outright Socialists as long as you never mention OWS, Democrats, and Socialists.  The political parties bring baggage, discard that baggage and there is common ground, then you can talk political parties.

                At least, this is what my conversations with tea baggers has shown.

            •  Hell, look what they're doing with one little hug. (4+ / 0-)

              One thing the GOP Elite knows how to do better than anyone is connect with outright lie to low-IQ people -- especially those who depend daily on external influences to guide their lives and form their ideas -- and use them like robotic puppets for a few months every other year.

              It's what makes entities like Fox N3ws and televangelists so successful.  Simple thoughts and simple words for simple minds.

              After all, Westboro's signs don't say "Our Lord and Savior Heartily Disagrees with Homosexuals".

              I predict a sharp rise in passport applications if Santorum gets the nod.

              by here4tehbeer on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:09:33 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I agree. However, I still think the message is key (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, sockpuppet, Neon Vincent, eXtina

            and violence or destruction won't help. In fact, the movement was barely getting any coverage until NYPD over-reacted, and the more the authorities over-react to a peaceful, reasonable protest, the more press, the more sympathy and the more mainstream support the message and the movement gets.

            I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

            by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:43:08 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  In some ways I agree (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              sockpuppet, ScienceMom, eXtina

              It was the NYPD that really brought OWS to visibility, but now that there is visibility there are a lot of people who claim to support OWS only if it is completely passive, although they call that non-violent.  The fact of the matter is that I am more than happy with the breadth and depth of support of Occupy right now.  Sure it isn't massive but having support from around 20% of the country for the movement(not the goals, just the movement) is a massive amount of people supporting Occupy.  People tend to forget that movements are not elections, they can win with only minority support.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:08:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, it is like a pebble dropped into a pond, and (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Betty Pinson, eXtina

                there are many different ramifications and groups and sections of the country in which these ramifications will resonate. It's a simple idea with a complex effect.

                I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

                by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:20:05 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Oil and gas. Hopefully, this will be a major part (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina, sockpuppet, David54, sacrelicious

          of their messaging.  They changed the narrative on the deficit...now hopefully they'll address our dependence on oil and how much damage it is doing in the long run.  It would be a counterargument against one of the issues that IMHO will dominate the election.

          Got Social Security? Thank a Democrat!

          by Fury on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:16:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  They won that one (13+ / 0-)
            They changed the narrative on the deficit.
            as they win on every other message: by default.  Where there the Democrats? When the Rethugs ratch up their false rhetoric, our Democratic "leadership" proves their complicity through silence again and again, or even worse, by picking up the Rethug ball and running with it towards our own end zone. When Rethug wingnuts bring up the deficit, the proper response is not to agree and look for bipartisan consensus on not even whether but how much to cut social spending. The proper response is to hammer them hard, unmercifully, and incessantly with the fact that before his father's Supreme Court appointees installed Bush II in the White House, we had a balanced budget and a surplus. That bears repeating:
            BEFORE BUSH AND THE REPUBLICAN TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH, WE HAD A BALANCED BUDGET AND A SURPLUS.
            Yes, I'm shouting. Because this is a message that needs to be shouted. Shouted from every Democratic rooftop, all day long, over and over again.

            I don't expect the corporate employees of the "liberal media" to point this out, but I am not so much baffled as I am disgusted that we never hear this from Obama, Biden, Reid, or Pelosi. It's as if they don't know what caused the deficit, or don't care to remind the voters of it.

            Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

            by drewfromct on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:34:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  OWS started to change that chemistry and it's (24+ / 0-)

          done great things.  But notice how the Dems are NOT picking up on much of it?  It changed the conversation, but you don't see the Dems actually taking the opportunity to change the conversation overall.

          Dems should be talking about expanding the rights of women to have abortions - they should be talking about how important not limiting women's life choices are and the effects of unwanted pregnancies on women, how it's a zygote, for god's sake, not a baby.

          Dems should be talking about how important the right to vote is and how horrible it is to do anything that limits it, that taking away a person's right to vote because they don't have a specified piece of paper is anti American.

          Dems should be talking about how important it is for each PERSON to exercise their religious rights in their own way without influence of any kind from government - either by encouragement such as in schools or by discouragement.

          Dems should be talking about how a higher top income tax kept this country with a strong middle class, and it's been since that was changed that the middle class has started to become endangered.

          Dems should be talking about how a public education is the only way most lower income children have of ever reaching the middle class, much less any higher and that if we don't provide good government support for ALL schools - not just a charter here and there - we stealing that opportunity from all children.

          Dems should be talking about what an important contribution teachers make to our society and how important it is that they receive decent compensation so the best of the best will want to stay with teaching.  They should be talking about how important it is that the schools teaching our teachers how to teach be sufficiently funded to ensure our kids get a good education.

          But they don't.  At best, they play defense against the rethug attacks on these things, and do a piss poor job on defense.

          The only reason the Dems are more popular right now is because the rethugs have gone so far overboard.  But that's how you get the change in the long term.  How much of what the rethugs have accomplished in the last 20 years would have seemed inconceivable 30 or 40 years ago?  That's because they kept hammering the same things, even though people seemed to be rejecting it.  They kept hammering until those things seemed acceptable.

          If the Dems don't seize the offensive in these conversations - and do it soon - the current state of affairs will be only a very temporary setback for the rethugs.  And I don't see any movement in that direction by Dems.  Here and there one or two will stay some of the right stuff.  But there is no organization, no message, no marketing plan at all to hammer a progressive - or even a semi liberal platform.  The Dems are truly wasting a golden opportunity.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:02:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, yes, yes! (10+ / 0-)

            I want to see many more Democratic spokespeople making the positive case for the values that our party embraces.

            •  I wrote a diary on this topic this morning (18+ / 0-)

              inspired by Lakoff's article, as this one was. I think that the important point is that WE MUST STOP PLAYING DEFENSE AND START PLAYING OFFENSE. Stop responding to the conservatives as if they can be convinced with logic or facts - they can't. It's been proven in studies that they are quite literally impervious to facts. Start getting our positive message out about liberal morality and liberal values, dammit.

              "You're on your own" within the context of a society IS sociopathic. - kovie

              by Killer of Sacred Cows on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:19:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Yes! You wrote a great and important (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

                diary... as important as this one about Lakoff, who always hits the nail on the head.

                Dems LOVE to argue.  That's a problem.

                Kick apart the structures - Seth

                by ceebee7 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:00:40 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  That's not a bug (3+ / 0-)

                  Its a feature!  And now is our opportunity to take that argument directly to the voters.  We, and more particularly our leadership, needs to start every conversation with "here's OUR vision for America...These are OUR goals!"  NOT with suggesting that the republicans have a point and we can compromise with that if they would only be bipartisan.  It's time for our leadership to come out of their collective defensive crouch, quit whining about how the mean old republicans won't even work with us to pass republican legislation, and fucking LEAD!  You don't win a race by trying to convince all the other runners to run more slowly, you win it by fucking running faster than the other guys!

                  •  I think of a West Wing episode during the race (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    eXtina

                    for Bartlet's second term. It's at the debates.

                    The Rethuglican candidate says something pissy: "My view of this is simple: we don't need a Federal Department of Education telling us our children have to learn Esperanto, they have to learn Eskimo poetry. Let the states decide, let the communities decide on health care, on education, on lower taxes, not higher taxes. Now, he's going to throw a big word at you - "unfunded mandate." He's going to say if Washington lets the states do it, it's an unfunded mandate. But what he doesn't like is the federal government losing power. But I call it the ingenuity of the American people."

                    Bartlet's response: "Unfunded mandate" is two words, not one big word. There are times when we're fifty states and there are times when we're one country, and have national needs. And the way I know this is that Florida didn't fight Germany in World War II or establish civil rights. You think states should do the governing wall-to-wall. That's a perfectly valid opinion. But your state of Florida got $12.6 billion in federal money last year - from Nebraskans, and Virginians, and New Yorkers, and Alaskans, with their Eskimo poetry. 12.6 out of a state budget of $50 billion. Now, I'm supposed to be using this time for a question, so here it is: Can we have it back, please?"

                    Took the wind totally out of the old Rethug gasbag's sails.

                    We need to do that, all the time, WITHOUT Aaron Sorkin writing the scripts first.

                    "You're on your own" within the context of a society IS sociopathic. - kovie

                    by Killer of Sacred Cows on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:18:13 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  Playing offense (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

                We've been playing on their turf, with their framing, in their words all along.  

                In the two Presidential elections before Obama, someone pointed out that while few people could tell you what Gore or Kerry stood for or wanted to do as President, it was crystal clear to every voter on either side what Bush stood for.  (mainly lower taxes).  Our side was left with trying to argue against his proposals.  

                We must comment on the issues in our own words in our own space without regard to the right wing talking points and framing.

                When they talk about the "death tax," we must not protest that language, but speak in our own space about the "aristocracy tax," developed in response to the abuses of the "landed aristocracy" that we revolted against in 1776.

                We shouldn't whine in outrage when they talk about  "cutting $500 billion from Medicare," we should say in a separate conversation that Obama and Pelosi saved $500 billion dollars by diverting it from the insurance companies to patient care.

                We should learn from Luntz, who instructed Republicans:
                Don't say "tax cut," say "tax relief."

                State our case in a stand-alone manner.  Don't argue, complain about, or refer to their language in any way.  

          •  Incredibly frustrating (4+ / 0-)

            We're blowing an opportunity that may not come around again for decades.

            Maybe too many of these freaks really are DINO's. They don't seem to embrace any vision other than a GOP lite one.  

            Stupid, stupid, stupid.

            With GOP redistricting debacles and Obama cutting off downticket Dems access to DNC and other campaign funding, it puts our chance for Congressional majorities on the chopping block.  

            Who are these idiots in DC?

          •  Actually, they did a great thing by making the (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina

            "social values" argument about contraception, which has driven the gop right off a cliff.
            When Obama is re-elected, he can appoint moderate-left judges and hopefully we will have more women elected. Then the anti-abortion side will be back on the defensive and will be further marginalized.
            Otherwise I agree.

            I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

            by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:29:55 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Agreed. OWS have changed the dialogue (4+ / 0-)

            But we need more.

            The contraception battles of 2012 are alot like battle over custody of Elian Gonzales in 2000, and the gay marriage ceremonies in 2004 -- Rove knew if the candidates didn't excite the base, the morality issues would.

            Conservatives feel better feeling "right" than they do being "informed", heading into the voting booth. The election of 2008 pulled the rug out from underneath them because so many people were ready for a change from Bush-Cheney -- even, to a certain extent, Independents and a few Republicans.

            It's not like we can't do this -- we already have the mechanism of the OWS and the net to spread the message, kill off Rush's $$ line, and use Facebook to spring into action. We also have the demographic that they don't -- young men and women who have grown up in a world where a woman's choice is law. That is not just a legal framework, it's a cultural mindset.

            Conservatives may want to frame this as a culture war, but young people, having tasted freedom, will be difficult to contain.

            2012 Presidential campaign: (Insert Republican anachronism here) ____________.

            by Fe Bongolan on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:40:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  We need to hear more from Barbara Mikulski (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            barbwires, eXtina

            and Jan Shakowsky, and less from Dick Durbin and Steny Hoyer.
            We need more women candidates, and we need to hear more from the women.
            That will be a broadening of the effect of OWS.
            After this election,  we will be talking more sensibly about education, health, etc.

            I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

            by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:00:58 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  An old Chinese proverb, loosely translated, says.. (0+ / 0-)

          ......."A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step".  I believe that OWS is that single step.  Like any major movement this journey of a thousand miles this journey will not be easy but I'm certain that the destination WILL be reached.

          A new awareness is happening in our society that extends far beyond what we've seen in the past.  The right wing extremists will use every thing in their power to defeat real reform but they will not succeed; we're now living in a world of instant global communications.  The 99% will not be kept in ignorance any longer and will demand a fair and just distribution of this country's wealth.

    •  This is why I am constantly hammering on the (15+ / 0-)

      media about "the narrative".

      I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

      by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:52:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Meh. My 'narrative' (5+ / 0-)

        is that the state of my "soul" is none of the government's business.

      •  But WE have to have our narrative, not depend upon (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hepshiba, eXtina, BigDuck

        "the media".

        The Media repeats what the conservs say - and so do we Dems.  Read the entire Lakoff article.  We do not message to moral values as the GOP does.

        Most of America agrees with, polls in favor of, "Democratic", or "Progressive" moral values!  Social Security, health care, etc.

        But we - as we have all done above - get caught up in process and policy arguments.

        We have to train ourselves to do differently.  We have to train ourselves to take control of the moral argument - which is anathema to most progressives, to dictate to others.

        Liberal = Liberty for all

        Democrat = freedom

        Helping your neighbor = Christian values = unemployment insurance

        Family values = care for our extended family = Medicare for grandma

        Progressives simply refuse to tell others how to think.  And we mock the GOP for both doing the telling, and for having syncophants that willingly drink it all in.  But that is how the GOP wins!

        Lakoff is precisely correct, and this is something we need to have a major discussion on, with particular message planning, on KOS.

        We cannot wait for the DNC or Obama-Biden 2012 to "frame the issue" for us.  That's why we always lose on messaging.  Always.

        Anti-woman, anti-gay, anti-union, anti-worker, anti-health, anti-progress, anti-freedom: Republicans 2012.

        by mumtaznepal on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 03:54:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  There's an alternative train of thought here. (16+ / 0-)

      It's possible that with the economy rebounding like it is, in the eyes of honest-to-god conservatives truly interested in the economy and not what goes on in people's bedrooms Team Obama are looking like rock stars.

      Given that plausibility, he has the chance to point to his success and claim it was a good old fashioned progressive approach to governing that did it effectively leaving the GOP to the lunatics.

      Now being but a peon in this great society, I for one don't see much in the way of economic success for the likes of me. That is to say, I haven't noticed much in the way of a trend towards proportionate income equality in this trickle-up recovery. But that doesn't mean he can't claim progressive success and move the center to the left.

      This desire the latest GOP leadership has to redefine the conservative ideals could leave them a permanent political minority. The party of the angry white dudes as it were.

      Romney - his fingernails have never been anything but manicured.

      by Pescadero Bill on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:33:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  U3 is 8.3%, U6 is 15%, and home values are still (5+ / 0-)

        in the toilet.  The Reagan '84 "Morning in America" campaign ran w/ U3 about 1 pt lower, and housing values weren't in free fall.  

        Christina Romer is quoted by Suskind in early '09 stating that U3 of 8% would be totally unacceptable.  While things are not as bad now as they once were, they're still unaccetable by a marker laid down by Romer.  

        While there are potentially winning strategies to be utilized,  trying to sell economic rebound isn't one of them.

        Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

        by RFK Lives on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:00:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The housing crash was incredibly regionalized (8+ / 0-)

          Here in upstate New York, there was never a boom to bust. The value of my home and those of my neighbors has hovered almost ruler-flat since the turn of the century.

          I'm not saying it's not an issue in some place - yes, Florida, yes, Nevada, yes, Arizona - but it's not necessarily a nationwide issue, and in particular housing values aren't really an issue in some of the most critical swing states like Ohio and Pennsylvania.

          Intended to be a factual statement.

          by ipsos on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:14:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Nope they are in CLE because we were part (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina, pHunbalanced

            Of the mortgage fraud/meltdown in the 2000's. It didn't help an already difficult economy w/ manufacturing fleeing elsewhere.

            Don't assume because housing wasn't @ stratospheric levels like the coasts, that we don't have problems & blight etc.

            The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

            by a2nite on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:04:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I think you're missing the psychological factor (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina

          that was the second greatest economic collapse to have hit the country. People were very aware of it. ANY numbers with a plus before them reflect well on the president and can be sold as positive factors in his reelection given the fear people were facing.

          Rising gas prices based in part on a destabilizing Middle East situation are the potential winds that can bring the house of cards down no doubt. And I don't doubt for a second Netanyahu's regime is fully aware of their ability to throw a monkey wrench into the presidential race. So to say the least nothing is a given.

          Point being, the race can very well come down to "the economy, stupid" once again be it moving up, or crashing down. But as of now, I think people are feeling positive about Obama's handling of the situation and it reflects in his poll numbers. The consideration of the U3 under those circumstances is irrelevant (IMHO) so long as the number is steadily moving up.

          Romney - his fingernails have never been anything but manicured.

          by Pescadero Bill on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:40:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  We're talking narrative again. Romer did use 8% (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mumtaznepal, eXtina

          but that turned into a "Obama told us without stimulus unemployment could go over 8%" or whatever.

          Romer used formula that used the GDP of -3 or whatever was given at that time for 4th quarter 0f 2008. It was later revised to have been -8.9% and the 3rd quarter 2008 and the year of 2008 and the start of 2009  all much bigger drop than anyone knew then
          With correct data Romer would not have used 8% and she should not have anyway
          no one thinks 8% is acceptable in any case

          But by all the markers used we are in economic rebound, it's just we are rebounding from much further down then we knew.

      •  "Allegedly" rebounding (7+ / 0-)
        It's possible that with the economy rebounding like it is, in the eyes of honest-to-god conservatives truly interested in the economy and not what goes on in people's bedrooms Team Obama are looking like rock stars.
        We are measuring rebounds from recession based on gross figures. None of the indicia are reverberating to the man/woman on the street. The underlying housing concavity and jobs crisis are what they see. They see high energy prices and high food prices.

        Let's face it, the majority of people operate as though whomever is at the helm is not really that important in their daily lives. They just assume people are in DC doing what they are supposed to be doing. They are the independents and the low information citizens. I mean, criminy, how many of these stiffs know the R's want to do away with the freakin Post Office!!?

        •  You're right, that's the reason for OWS. What the (3+ / 0-)

          Pres. gets credit for is moving in response to the opportunity that OWS created. Dems will have to respond with action.
          There are lots of things that help vis a vis the "income inequality" in addition to middle class jobs, which will really take a decade to significantly rebound, and payroll fairness.
          Tax fairness, affordablity of health care are things that can be fixed to help working and middle class, pretty quickly.
          A robust rooftop solar industry will help schools, hospitals etc. cut costs, and will help homeowners reduce their enslavement to utility (fossil fuel) corporations.

          The most important factor is that the middle and working class in America has finally awakened to the fact that there has been a class war for 30 years, and that there has been massive redistribution of wealth to the super rich since then, during this whole time it was verboten to speak of class warfare or inequity, etc.

          As for the post office, I think this will be a major issue in a lot of rural red state areas that the Dems should really go to work on.

          I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

          by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:10:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  40 years of movement building (19+ / 0-)

      Lakoff's point that the Republican field is working to move the public and the nation to the right to set up a future with more evangelical values at the center is one that I wish more people would observe.

      The tendency of evangelicals to work in hierarchy and to follow talking points in order to join together in common cause towards a vision comes from their instinct for regimentation.

      Money is a huge factor.  It is what is causing the whole playing field to tilt.  Where does it come from?  Essentially, people who have made a lot of money through just lucking out and having a cattle ranch where oil was found tend towards magical thinking and conclude that they ought to put money to work to do God's work in the world - as they are advised by those who they turn to for spiritual advice.

      The inspiration behind the politics is not about a candidate.  It is about doing what must be done at every level in order to move the entire American public, its consciousness and its perceptions so that it winds up voting more for political policies that are more evangelically appropriate.

      They think the direction America takes is what is on the line and they are willing to dig in and work for it no matter how long it takes.  They start out knowing they aren't going to succeed at first.

      If progressives were that determined, a lot of things would be different.

      hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

      by Stuart Heady on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:39:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agree. The good thing is that the evangelical (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        movement has seen its high water mark, in terms of appeals to younger generations. I think we'll see a breakdown into a lot of small, more moderate sects and the Dominionists and their ilk will hopefully fail, with enough resistance from the rest of Americans that want to maintain a separation of religion and state.

        I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

        by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:17:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Too many comfort themselves (5+ / 0-)

          I think dismissing these people because they do not seem to be intellectually adequate is a mistake.

          It is equally likely that if things get worse as the various problems in the world complexify over the coming years ahead, a lot of people will turn to emotional rather than intellectual solutions and away from honestly facing the truth.  

          There could be, at times, majorities going that way.  Thus, some sort of long term movement building has to be a progressive focus.  There is too much at stake to leave the field to the special interests who like to use the evangelical movement to muddy the waters and promote their agenda.

          hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

          by Stuart Heady on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:09:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I agree with your comment completely. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hepshiba, eXtina

            I do think their home demographic is shrinking. That's why they're so busy in Central America, South America and Africa, evangelizing.
            We make a big mistake also not having progressive, secular "evangelists" out there building bridges with people in the 3rd world and countering the effects of these people. They go over representing America and promote the idea that their religious views are the norm here.

            I've been involved in supporting Texas Freedom Network the last couple of years in the battle against the Dominionists and evangelicals making a mess of Texas education.
            Ultimately truth and facts trump fantasy and fiction. Their regressive destructiveness is evidence of a reaction to a tide of facts that threaten their narrow mis-interpretation of the Bible and all the ramifications of that, such as the way it's used to enlist evangelicals into climate denialism.
            Christian fascism is peaking, partly because it feels an existential threat. Christian telehucksterism is feeling threatened as well. The threat actually comes from within, from the untenable beliefs that they hold and try to propagate.
            I think we need to meet it with as much force as we can muster.

            I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

            by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 03:20:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  DLC/GOP lite strategies are ancient (4+ / 0-)

      They've never been effective and are even less so now, leaving Obama and other conservative Dems vulnerable to attacks on issues like deficit reduction and close ties to Wall Street.

      The fact that Obama and national Dem leadership are not seizing this rare opportunity to sell the Dem vision and policy agenda for the country is incredible, not to mention incredibly dumb and short sighted.

      Will they seize the moment and begin selling their own brand?  We can only hope so.

    •  Not to the right. (10+ / 0-)
      40 Years Have Proven Democrats Seize Every excuse to move to the right.
      but to the wrong.

      As long as we're talking about Lakoff and the harm done by repeating rethug rhetoric in order to dispute and discredit it, it's time again to examine the tremendous advantage we give them by calling them the "right". How many times does it need to be pointed out that the word "right" also means "proper" and "correct" before it sinks in that the opposite of right is not just left, but also, and more importantly, wrong?

      It's long past time that we drop the practice of referring to politics through the harmful and obsolete frame of right and left, and acknowledge that it is we who are right, while it is the conservatives who are entirely wrong. If we must use a directional metaphor at all, let it be the more accurate and positive one of forwards vs. backwards.

      Remember and Repeat: It is not Right Vs. Left, but Right Vs. Wrong. We are Right. They are Wrong. We are Forwards. They are Backwards.

      It's not Rocket Science, people.

      Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

      by drewfromct on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:24:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Except I disagree (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      killjoy, eXtina, aitchdee, Turn Left

      I like Lakoff, but like a lot of people who made a reputation on one big idea, I think he's flogged it to the point of diminishing returns. I think the right radically overreached and now the frog has jumped out of the boiling pot. You don't go from a simmer to a 10,000 heat in a second. No, i don't see this benefiting the downticket. If anything, I think that is where the backlash will hit the hardest, because those are the people who have to look constituents in the eye and say "Look, getting you back to work is not as important as punishing those slut daughters of yours."

      Take the "Can't(or)" out of Congress. Support E. Wayne Powell in Va-07. http://www.ewaynepowell.com/

      by anastasia p on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:57:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  For the Life of Me (77+ / 0-)

    It is mind boggling why the Dems never seem to heed Lakoff's advice. Or if they do, it's usually when it's too late in the game. For better or worse, Lakoff's Republican counterpart, Frank Luntz, has a lot of sway in the Republican party. Democrats might be smarter overall, and have positions most agree with, but Republicans know how to win elections, even when their agenda isn't popular.

    •  Dems embrace centrism, which the GOP rightly sees (30+ / 0-)

      as weakness.

      One side compromises; one doesn't.  It'd be so much better for us if the Dems never compromised; after a rough patch of a few years, they'd win eventually, & then never lose another election.

      But so long as Dems fear GOP money more than our votes...

      Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

      by Leftcandid on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:13:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Presidential Campaign in diary title's superfluous (18+ / 0-)

        The party of W, Cheney, Limbaugh, Beck, Palin, Toomey, Rubio, Ryan, West, et al didn't suddenly lose its bearings when its Clown Car Demolition Derby started.  The utter insanity of the GOP presidential "race" is merely a symptom of  a much deeper disease.

        They may be a little crazier now than they were on 1/20/09, but that's a difference of degree at best.  Doesn't anyone recall the "death panel" speeches and mobs at town meetings in 2009?  How about the Schiavo case?  Going back a little further--recall the mobs outside Gore's residence chanting: "Get out of Cheney's house?."

        These people stole a presidential election in 2000 and, after 9/11, treated the Constitution like one of Cheney's hunting partners.  I don't know why people are so surprised now.

        Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

        by RFK Lives on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:13:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  NO. Dems embrace argument, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        "which the GOP rightly sees as weakness."

        Like moths to a flame, Dems seize upon inaccuracy as an opportunity to engage...  and (symbolically) hit the right a few times in the mouth.

        We're (the nation is) being DISTRACTED.

        Kick apart the structures - Seth

        by ceebee7 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:06:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Compromise should be the result. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        Unfortunately, with our current crop of Democrats, compromise isn't the result, it's the goal.

    •  Rachel Maddow falls right into this error (23+ / 0-)

      What I really don't like about Rachel is that she spends way too much time ridiculing the GOP and not nearly enough time with people who could help explain to her listeners why liberal/progressive values are important and how to defend them.  She never has learned how to use her podium to educate rather than just expose.

      The scientific uncertainty doesn't mean that climate change isn't actually happening.

      by Mimikatz on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:23:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's not her job (11+ / 0-)

        People who need to be educated on liberal/progressive values don't watch her show. People watch her show to find out what the other side is up to.

        It's not 11th dimensional chess; it's just chess. And he's KICKING YOUR ASS.

        by pneuma on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:28:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The point being that someone (13+ / 0-)

          needs to fill that role and she would be a good candidate.

          There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:03:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Those that NEED that education will never watch (4+ / 0-)

            She's already been tagged as an ideological leper by the "right", so rest assured that all those who'd most benefit from the lessons she could provide are already avoiding her like...well....

            She seems more inclined to coach the team she's on, too, rather than instruct the opposing team.

            "Kenyan-Muslim-Communistic-Expialidocious!"

            by chmood on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:37:53 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  not necessarily (12+ / 0-)

              my mom is a big fan of Rachel, while her husband sends me anti-immigrant, anti-Obama mass e-mails, and they watch tv together.

              I don't know how much of Rachel he absorbs, but I do know he believes humans have had a hand in climate change, and I haven't received a birther e-mail in months.

              so I look at him as an example of an ideological continuum rather than someone who possess the with-us-or-against-us mindest we are so quick to point out in right wingers yet employ when comparing ourselves to them

              "we're flying high on affluenza, mounting severed servants heads on the credenza" -Sanctuary City of the Rich

              by Xavior Breff on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:13:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't agree with your argument at all. Those (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              orestes1963, AoT, eXtina, mike101

              that support the Limbaugh position don't watch her show, but lots of others who don't necessarily agree do.  And if she sought to change the narrative and push a progressive agenda, rather than be on the defensive, there's a good possibility even more would watch.  And it would change the narrative, which is what's necessary.

              The right could have made the same argument as you - only those that agree with us will listen to us, so why bother?  But they haven't.  They've known that their message would be spread in an ever enlarging circle, and that many who never intended to listen would, and would accept a little of what they're saying, then a little more, then a lot more.  

              Copping out of putting effort into changing the narrative because no one would listen anyway is not a good alternative.

              "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

              by gustynpip on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:09:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  That's not the education being discussed here. (5+ / 0-)

              We need education, all of us do, in how to defeat Republicans and introduce progressive ideas into the popular dialogue again.  

              Not education about what's wrong with the Republicans, we all know that here. But how to approach undecided people and be heard. Not taken for the monsters the Republicans have successfully portrayed us as for the past 30 years.

              "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

              by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:23:47 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  That job belongs to Obama who has disappointed (14+ / 0-)

        For instance,  he hadn't latched on to the issue of fairness, which is one value the GOP twisted into a pretzel. Where everyone having an equal chance for success is what we believe in but didn't until this was laid at his feet by OWS. He could have explained much better the economics of why the stimulus was needed. He could have turned away from the path of NSA public surveillance started by Bush in practice and explained why as a Constitutional scholar.

        I always expected him to be the Professor-In-Chief with his oratory skills. But he has not explained much the nuts-and-bolts of liberalism to conservatives over the last 3 and a quarter years. At this point he could be explaining the (gasp!) nuances of it to the rest of America while comparing it to the downside of Neoconservatism. Instead, he's only since last summer finally picked up the ball and started running with it. And where it will really count will be not through words but through policy.

        •  The job belongs to all Dems. And pretty much all (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Little Flower, AoT, sacrelicious, eXtina

          of them are failing miserably.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:10:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  OWS is mostly Dems and liberals at this point (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, eXtina

            And I believe it has done more to reframe the argument, in general, than our leaders in Washington. We're having to lead them by the nose because pay-to-play politics puts them in untenable positions where they cannot afford to fully implement an FDR - Truman - Kennedy like leveling of the field.

            Lots of grassroots Dems are making it happen. Still, your point is correct.

      •  Yes but (6+ / 0-)

        she actually had a great 15 minute segment recently that was the fact-based, analytical companion to Lakoff's, starting with the premise "why are they putting all this crazy stuff out there when they know it will cost them the election?"  

        She charted how the Dem presidents have moved right along with the GOP's and how GOP congress has gone way to the right over the last 40 years, with Dems edging slightly.

      •  Please write her and tell her that. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina, sidnora

        She may not know or understand the effects of not using her megaphone at every opportunity.

        ♥ Medicare For All. ♥
        "Our health care system is like a casino. The insurance industry is the House... The House always wins." -- UnaSpenser

        by Chi on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:43:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Why Dems don't heed Lakoff (6+ / 0-)

      Dems as a party and as a culture, do not have a uniting vision for the long term future.  

      Republicans are trying to change the culture, and change the direction that American society is moving in.

      Democrats focus on the marketing problems associated with the specific candidate in the specific race, regardless of the big picture.  Democrats generally dismiss the need to think in any other way.

      This causes everyone in the Party to be wondering why they are playing in a field whose lines are marked by Republicans who see the advantage in getting the lines moved.

      hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

      by Stuart Heady on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:45:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Dem establishment (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      doesn't care for his DFH insistences and loves the perks of power.

      On the other end, I think Lakoff's one note and alarmist.  Of course Republican rhetoric will become more vocally extremist as their demographic power base diminishes relentlessly, and the Promised Land to their followers that is the pre-1968 U.S.A. slips ever further and irrecoverably into the past.

      On the whole the Party seems resigned to the current political power oscillations or cycle, in which we get alternating two year periods of single party rule sandwiched between two year periods of two party rule.  This seems to be the most efficient way of getting issues and need for reforms in the next area of American life to emerge and both parties getting a shot at solving them.  

    •  It's also mind-boggling (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      that Lakoff isn't more effective at selling his message to Democrats the way Luntz is with regards to Republicans. He's a communications expert, after all.

      I don't pretend to know the dynamics and/or what steps he takes to get Democrats on board. From the outside Lakoff appears to me as more of a lecturer than an organizer, and maybe that's a factor - maybe my assessment is incorrect. I really don't know.

      Dear Republicans: If the US increases oil production, OPEC will simply decrease foreign production to keep prices high. We're not as stupid as you look.

      by surfbird007 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:50:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The question remains; if Santorum and his ilk are (15+ / 0-)

      redefining the GOP, or are reestablishing who the GOP represent, then are they frightening more and more people away?

      Let's hope so, and if Obama wins hardily in November, it would be fair to say "Yes".

      Romney - his fingernails have never been anything but manicured.

      by Pescadero Bill on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:40:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  i think so (7+ / 0-)

        i mean, sure they've had the microphone here, but the overwhelming response to their nonsense has been revulsion.

        i mean, i get what lakoff is saying about repetition and what not, but come on. it's not like repetition is the whole of it; there are still some people out there who think about what they've heard.  and he seems to suggest that there is no corresponding mechanism by which liberal ideas are absorbed through repetition.

        gop:  crazy-ass conservatalk

        dem:  rebut with dem value talking points

        who is spouting gop nonsense without a rebuttal?  even obama's speeches and campaigning would provide a contrast.  but only the conservative ideas sink in seems to be lakoff's thesis.  which is just silly.  if repetition does the trick, then dem rebuttals are just as effective as gop nonsense.

        Never forget that the Republican War on Women originated with religion; the GOP is but theocracy's handmaiden.

        by Cedwyn on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:21:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  He seems to have a very low opinion of the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cedwyn, eXtina

          common voter. Justifiably so?

          Given what we've seen the last 30 odd years, he might be on to something. But that just could be because people weren't paying very close attention. The latest zany circus GOP primary on top of a very scary economic situation resulting quite obviously from Republican economic shenanigans might have enough people paying close attention to, and active in, politics once again to overcome their brain-frying repetition of lies.

          That could be the factor I think he's missing.

          An honest-to-god 4th Estate doing its job would be nice though.

          Romney - his fingernails have never been anything but manicured.

          by Pescadero Bill on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:19:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Absolutely justifiably so. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ceebee7, eXtina, mike101

            The "common voter" does not react to facts! They only react to emotional appeals that resonate with whatever moral system they have been programmed to believe. Therefore, we MUST STOP WITH THE FACTS and start fighting back with MORAL, EMOTIONAL APPEALS.

            Yes, I'm incredibly pissed off about the lack of understanding of this point on the Left. We need to wake up and understand that moral appeals are not "fighting dirty." They are fighting to WIN.

            "You're on your own" within the context of a society IS sociopathic. - kovie

            by Killer of Sacred Cows on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:21:50 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Personally, I think it's possible to do it all. (6+ / 0-)

              That is, present people with fact-based moral appeals loaded with inspiring emotion.

              Long gone I suppose are the days a candidate could bowl over an audience with incredible, passionless intellect like Abe Lincoln. Sadly.

              Romney - his fingernails have never been anything but manicured.

              by Pescadero Bill on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:55:21 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Indeed. There was a diary or (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

              comment here yesterday which expressed pollsters' stated opinions of voters... and seemed to say pretty universally that an awful lot of voters were just stupid.  I don't know anyone better justified in this opinion than pollsters who make their livings asking voters questions.  Therefore, my opinion that most voters are stupid is reinforced.  Unfortunately.

              Obviously, it is this ignorance that causes the right to believe they can win with bullshit.  Certainly wouldn't be the first time.

              Quel domage...

              Kick apart the structures - Seth

              by ceebee7 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:14:37 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  In a short answer, Yes. (8+ / 0-)

        I could go on about the number of conservatives I know that won't vote Republican anymore, but that would be a waste of time because the list is pretty long. Not everyone is buying it, even some conservatives.

        •  That's temporary - just until the rethug (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bryduck, AoT, eXtina, mike101

          message has been hammered enough that people get so used to it - with little to no pushback from the Dems - that it no longer seems outrageous, and people are taking it as normal.  And if the Dems don't start pushing back hard, that's exactly what's going to happen.  Dems never seem to look at the big picture; they just look to the next election or the next issue.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:12:58 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  How? (3+ / 0-)

      The same way Christine O'Donnell wound up the GOP candidate for the Senate.

      The base of the GOP, the ones who vote in the primaries, are purity trolls. They're bratty 2 yr olds. They don't care about experience, or education, or anything else.

      They will do the exact opposite of what's reasonable and prudent. They don't care about winning, they want to fall in love.

      And they have a teenage girl's ability to choose a good partner.

      Look at the numbers of GOP primary voters. Look at the number of votes Santorum gets. Look at the number of registered voters of all stripes.

      Whether it's Romney or Santorum, I expect he'll get 90% of the Republicans (and they won't get even that in many states) who are a minority almost everywhere, and maybe, MAYBE, 5% more.

      In all but a few states, that's not enough to win.  

    •  It's also instructive to remember (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ceebee7, eXtina

      that while we've been losing ground for 30 years, the right wing spent 25 years (and hundreds of millions of rich people's dollars) before that, building their movement with almost nothing to show for it up until that point. That's the kind of focus and persistence we are up against.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:27:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They have a lot to show for it ... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        Decades of dominance of the Supreme Court have created the steady erosion of civil rights and corporate oligarchy, swung the 2000 election, allowed the conservative Court to entrench for another 2 decades, etc.

        More recently, they have destroyed the tax code with minimal estate tax, the Bush tax cuts, carried interest loophole and 15% capital gains rate, all entrenched by the Norquist pledge.

        •  All that came later. (0+ / 0-)

          None of the things you list happened more than 30 years ago.

          They were willing to keep building their movement for decades with no immediate return, because they were taking the long view. That's what I meant by "up until that point".

          We liberals spent that time, and quite a while afterwards, believing that we had vanquished the forces of the radical right permanently. In other words, we were complacent. I learned my lesson. I just hope that if we are ever again fortunate enough to achieve the level of political dominance we had in the 60's and 70's, we read some history, and take it seriously.

          My arithmetic was a little off, though - it was only 15 years, not 25, that they spent working in the wilderness: from the defeat of Barry Goldwater (1964) until the election of Ronald Reagan (1980).

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:18:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Too bad we can't do that too (5+ / 0-)

      Instead, everytime someone pops up with a genuinely progressive idea the "adults in the room" of the Democratic party jump on the DFH to pummel the idea and discredit it.

      You'd think that after decades of watching the debate slip away, we'd learn, but you'd be wrong

    •  right on (0+ / 0-)

      wish I had gotten here soon enough to rec this

      -7.75, -6.05 And these wars; they can't be won Does anyone know or care how they begun?-Matt Bellamy

      by nicolemm on Sun Mar 18, 2012 at 05:01:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  asdf (6+ / 0-)
    ...because independent women may still vote for their local conservative leaders as the strict fathers they want to see in office.
    Then they and their daughters deserve precisely what happens to them.

    As for your overall thesis:

    Bill Maher on What We Seem to Forget

    Sadly, everything Communism said about itself was a lie. Even more sadly,, everything Communism said about Capitalism was the truth.

    by GayIthacan on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:16:16 AM PDT

  •  Some good openings (22+ / 0-)

    There are some good openings for the labor movement.  AFL/CIO endorsed, NPR had a story on it this morning.  There was a very good contrast between Romney's attitude towards unions and the Democratic attitude, and talk about how embattled worker's rights have been lately.

    I'd love to hear a lot more of that sort of story.

  •  The Democrats react. I don't see them (37+ / 0-)

    acting. The right always pushes for extremes and the Dems placate. The only voice that makes sense when taken on the whole is Bernie Sanders. Bernie goes for the logical ideal and keeps pounding it. The Democrats start in the middle and half-life us to the right.

    There are rules in the House and the Senate about decorum. The Republicans flout them, the Democrats honor them with soft empty disdain that never gets to the point.

    •  Even the contraception issue and women's rights (17+ / 0-)

      as KJG noted, all of a sudden Dems woke up and said 'hey, we got this thing' after it fell into their laps

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:54:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Our side is not the one labeled "reactionary" (4+ / 0-)

      I despise labelism, but here it does serve a point. There are reasons why the political right have been called "reactionaries" for the past half-dozen generations. What is the #1 thing many Republicans hate? Anything"librulz" want.

      All I am saying is politics is forever. One side winning, as this diary and its source article suggest, is not forever. However, the overall arc of human history is one of progress.

      •  Let us be "actionary" then. (5+ / 0-)

        Why can't we initiate?  And progressive policies, not warmed-over conservative ones?

        ♥ Medicare For All. ♥
        "Our health care system is like a casino. The insurance industry is the House... The House always wins." -- UnaSpenser

        by Chi on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:51:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  How long a viewpoint can we take (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WheninRome, eXtina

        before our country suffers irreversible damage from our lack of action, though? I'd say we're pretty close to that point now. You see the progress of history, but for 30 years, there has been no economic progress, for example, for those of us who aren't rich. How much longer before that lack of progress defines the "overall arc"?
        My entire adult life will have been lived in an era of economic decline and Republican/conservative rule, since I turned 18 in 1980 and will be 65 in 15 years (unless by some miracle we change course radically, and much sooner than "forever" from now.) The very ideological foundations on which our country was created are being challenged and threatened on a daily basis to an extent unseen since the Civil War. We don't have the luxury of patience as you seem to suggest, imho, if we want our nation to survive in its historical form.

        •  Do we want it to "survive in its (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina

          historical form"?

          I'd like something better. The Senate and the House are arcane fossilized monoliths. The political parties are corporations and their state installations are almost what I would consider to be bastions of crime and monopolism.

          I hate the fact we have different stupid laws for every state, territory, protectorate and DC. Different laws for insurance, credit, health care, marriage, lending. It's intentionally designed this way so as to bamboozle everybody, it's not about states rights, it's about profitability and special interests. Congress carves out legislation that rewards or restricts certain states in order to get 'deals'. It's all rotten.

          •  Our country, from the Civil War to 1980, has (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina

            been, imho, what it was designed to be--a shining light of democracy for the world to emulate. Yes, we have done some horrible things, even before 1980, but that's because we're human. Name me a country that's been better--in whatever ways you want to measure--for that whole period, and I'll retract my comments. (Of course, since 1980, we've systematically begun to destroy that country and what it stood for.)
            Until another country is able to have a similar arc of success/progress for that long a time using a different political model, yes, I want it to survive in the form it had for those 120 years.

  •  Remember: More and BETTER Democrats (39+ / 0-)

    Shorter Gorge Lakoff:

    Here we have the perfect opportunity to point out the VAST differences between us and the opposition party and do we?  No.  

    All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:39:27 AM PDT

  •  I don't want to be a worry wart (10+ / 0-)

    Because I know that this anxiety is part of what keeps the Democrats from going bold and brazen like they need to. But I can't help but be anxious with all this talk about how we have this one in the bag, especially with the weird polls coming out in the last few days. What the hell is up with those??

    I really, really hope Santorum is not on the ticket. It might seem as if life would become a never-ending episode of the Daily Show, but it would not be funny at all to live through a frothy presidency. Yikes!

  •  I partly agree with him and I'm as concerned (12+ / 0-)

    as he is about Dems and progressives' responses. The 2010 election was a good lesson. I think that progressives relaxed right after Obama's election and let the gop get up off the mat, catch its breath, and go a second round.

    I think he's missing some things: women are more rational and more concerned with kitchen table issues than men, and once they really start exercising their electoral muscle, the country will move in a progressive direction on a number of issues. The Rush thing may have been the straw that broke the dam and will unleash a women's tsunami in the vote this year ( I know, I'm torturing the very idea of metaphor).

    I agree that we should not be complacent and we need to strengthen progressive institutions at all levels, and we need to push harder on the media to counter the conservative brainwashing.

    I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

    by David54 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:49:07 AM PDT

  •  Ad indicates what is to come (34+ / 0-)

    I'm in northern Ohio, and I saw an ad this morning by some third party that really disturbed me. The ad goes into great detail documenting how President Obama represents only the interests of Wall Street. It was a compelling and convincing ad for anyone who doesn't know the facts. This is what the right is going to try to do. They will use the hundreds of millions of dollars available through the PACs to turn President Obama into the sole reason for our economic woes. Someone inside the Obama campaign said recently that they are afraid they will be overwhelmed by the money available to the GOP candidate.

    Everything indicates that President Obama should win this election, but I'm not sure anymore. In my county, the number of voting locations for the November election is being seriously reduced. The elections board is claiming budget problems, but the Ohio Secretary of State had to break a tie between the Democrats and the Republicans on the board over whether this reduction would take place. This reduction, as far as I'm concerned, is designed to decrease the vote in a county that typically votes blue.

    By November, Ohio will have been saturated with deceptive campaign ads. Then come election day all kinds of road blocks will exist to voting. It's a nasty scenario.

    I hope the Obama campaign listens to guys like Lakoff because the right will have an enormous amount of money to spend to drive the campaign narrative, as that ad I saw this morning clearly indicates.

    "...in a society governed passively by free markets and free elections, organized greed always defeats disorganized democracy." Matt Taibbi

    by Getreal1246 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:07:36 AM PDT

  •  Correct as usual, & we have a major disadvantage (26+ / 0-)

    in this arena.

    The Democratic Party, as currently dominated by self-styled rational centrist negotiators, is generally incapable of articulating progressive morality in strong, non-negotiable terms.  Until the first high profile Democrat makes the first such declaration of No Compromise in a way that rattles the Fair & Balanced corporate infotainment & Beltway mentalities, the Democratic Party & base will remain uncompetitive in terms of redefining the national discourse.

    Of course Money has created this situation.  How to undo & uproot Clinton's money-dependent DLC concept from the Democratic Party while keeping the party competitive across 50 states is something the party cannot accomplish.  It is up to Occupy & extraparty progressive groups to do the messaging & leverage that against corrupt Democrats as well as Republicans.   And when we articulate our morality in contrast to theirs, we must never claim they are stupid, or idiots, or morons, because too many voters accept these ideas, & voters never respond well to being called stupid.

    We must explain how conservative morality is Not Moral.  How it is Wrong.  Smart vs Dumb doesn't work on the emotional brain; Good vs Evil does.  People want to reject evil & will change their minds.  Respect their intelligence (even when it's in doubt) and challenge their judgment with the kind of facts that illustrate the wrongness of the values they have (perhaps unwittingly) embraced.

    Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

    by Leftcandid on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:09:43 AM PDT

  •  This is why rhetoric matters (23+ / 0-)

    The more 'unthinkably nutty' conversations come up in a campaign, the more they become mainstream ideas. It doesn't matter if you lose this election--you've changed the conversation. This is why we're re-fighting battles that should have been over 80 years ago.

    Stephanie Dray
    Author of Historical Fiction (Berkley Books)

    by stephdray on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:13:49 AM PDT

  •  armchair quarterbacking (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Quicklund, cardinal, itskevin

    and monday quarterbacking.  very much over Lakoff.  this seems a lot like Mike Moore's 2008 Election Guide that explained exactly how we would lose the election in 2008.

  •  That's what manipulative people do: (14+ / 0-)
    Part of the Republican strategy is to get liberals to argue against them, repeating conservative language.
    The real answer is to not engage them on their level. The hard part is they come at you 24/7 without respite, because their end goal is to manipulate you.

    "A cynical, mercenary, demagogic press will produce in time a people as base as itself." - Joseph Pulitzer

    by CFAmick on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:29:44 AM PDT

    •  MinistryofTruth (8+ / 0-)

      This is why I love Jesse LaGreca. He gets to the point. He has something to say and says it. He is not just responding to right wing nonsense.

      This is the future for progressive action.  Looking forward to more like him stepping into leadership shoes.

      ♥ Medicare For All. ♥
      "Our health care system is like a casino. The insurance industry is the House... The House always wins." -- UnaSpenser

      by Chi on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:55:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Much as I, too, love Jesse, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Chi

        he too often just argues with the stated right's talking points.  I saw him in a video some time ago, most Kossacks posted he had "kicked [so and so's] ass"...  I didn't think so.  He tried to argue against the Republcan position, and the Republican was better, even if he did shout and interrupt.  Jesse should have asked the other guy why he believed whatever it was he was shouting, and attacked those sources.  Instead, Jesse tried to debate the argument itself.  This does not work, as posted several places here today.

        Kick apart the structures - Seth

        by ceebee7 on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:28:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Explains why Dem messaging (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      isn't very effective thus far.  If you're entire campaign message is based on "we're not as bad as the GOP", it's missing the mark.

      Obama's campaign daily reinforces the GOP message every time they criticize them without offering their own agenda and vision.

  •  Lakoff's crystal ball is cloudy - or - (11+ / 0-)

    The word "guarantee" does not mean what Lakoff thinks it means.

    Christian fundamentals have been active in American politics forever. This is good. They are Americans. All Americans should participate. They have been repeating

    But the influence they exert waxes and wanes over the years. There will of course be some version of Rick Santorum in 2016 saying what the Santorums of the world say. How much that impacts the 2016 remains very much to be seen.

    There are quite a few signs to indicate Lakoff is behind the times. Mr Obama's re-election is looking good, the Wisconsin GOP is reeling, several good court rulings have come down the pike, and the national GOP is fighting w/in itself.

    Is my crystal ball cloudy. Most definitely. No one has a good crystal ball. So when I read stuff like this, where the writer guarantees dire predictions will come true, all based on opinion, the writers loses my sympathy.

    Of course political groups reinforce their political messages in order to drive their political points home to voters. All groups do that. Doing so is no guarantor of perpetual success.

    •  missing phrase (5+ / 0-)

      Corrected 1st paragraph.

      Christian fundamentals have been active in American politics forever. This is good. They are Americans. All Americans should participate. They have been repeating their pitch for over 200 years.
    •  Quicklund, what you say is true in the short-term. (8+ / 0-)

      It is in the long-term that Republicans have been whipping our asses over and over with their messaging. I believe Mr. Lakoff is spot on as regards the long-term.

      Dems have a tendency to live in the moment but it will take 40 more years to reverse the setbacks to the liberal agenda that they have enacted in the past few decades and they, obviously, are becoming more rabid and extreme.  

      "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

      by rubyr on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:14:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What do you mean by short-term or long term? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cedwyn, native, offgrid, eXtina

        In the long term, humanity always progresses. In the very long term, we are extinct. For the past 30 or so years, America has operated under a Reaganomic tax model. I see that medium-term (in my way of terminology) trend coming to an end.

        We are not seeing a permanent trendline extending out indefinitely. Life is not linear. GOP / Tea extremism is more akin to a frustrated final spasm of defiance by the dead-enders who have driven the GOP into the corner it finds itself. That generation will lose sway and new GOP leaders will emerge. It would seem that John Huntsmann is counting on that sort of thing happening.

        •  You seem very sure of yourself. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Betty Pinson, eXtina

          Short-term for me is this election and long-term is decades down the road and the time in between.

          I am glad you are so confident. I am not and think we need to work very hard to bring about the result that you seem to think is inevitable without any effort.

          Also: the Republicans deeply believe that their idea of the world as they have created it for the last forty years and intend to maintain it for the next forty is "humanity progressing."

          "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

          by rubyr on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:02:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  See original post (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina
            Is my crystal ball cloudy? Most definitely.
            Am I certain life is not linear? With every fiber of my Chaos Theory Loving self.

            You:

            to bring about the result that you seem to think is inevitable without any effort.
            Me:

            Find the bolded part anywhere in my comment history. Take your time.

            Conclusion:

            •  I have admitted many times on this site (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Quicklund, eXtina

              that I am a dumb ass and I have not a clue as to what you
              are talking about.

              If your message is "don't panic" then, I assure you that I am not panicking. We are forty years late. It is time to act and take reasonable, rational steps to stop this crap, which IMHO is about to bury us. It has gotten somewhat better recently. More people seem to be aware and I feel this is the time to make good decisions about how we re-position our messaging so that what we believe is reflected in our message.  

              "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

              by rubyr on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:35:01 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You committed a common logical error (0+ / 0-)

                You "erected a strawman". You supplied me with an claim I did not make, a weak claim, and then you went on to tear it down. Ihave used these online forums for over 25 years so I have seen this mistake a lot. I apologize as I forget not everyone has done this stuff so long.

                My original point was that this writer - whomever he is - writes using such terms as "guarantee", "permanent" etc. He writes of Democratic political doom when Democratic political fortunes have been on the rebound for months? Why should he be believed? It sounds to me like he is just trying to get people to read a book or listen to a talk show.

                Now just because I say we have no reason to panic, that is not the same thing as saying victory is "inevitable" or that it will come bout "without any effort".

                I hope that answers your questions. Time is short. I have a shift to pull at the recall Walker office. We agree. Effort is indeed required.

    •  I hope so (3+ / 0-)

      But I also think we cannot lose the momentum stirred the OWS, and to keep our messaging just as strong.

      As part of some research I've been doing, the country has been,since its history, sexually repressed. Those periods of sexual repression are exacerbated when there is economic uncertainty.  The Salem witch trials, for example. It boils down to men controlling women as a means to shore up property and the family's place in the village social fabric.

      2012 Presidential campaign: (Insert Republican anachronism here) ____________.

      by Fe Bongolan on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:47:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My only point is to reject Chicken Little (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        He works for everyone so it is not a Dem/GOP thing. C.L. is very fond of the talk radio mike because panic plus outage prompts phone calls. Sometimes C.L. writes a book.

        Does the GOP want a permanent majority? Are there moral busybodies who would like nothing better than to tell everyone how to live, all in the name of freedom? Of course. That that try does not mean they win.

        There are plenty of places to show where they are failing. There is no reason whatsoever for a defeatist attitude. Pluck the Chicken Littles of the world.

    •  As I say above, I disagree with your (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      assessment of what constitutes the short and long terms. More specific to this comment, though, I challenge you to show how active fundamentalists have been in politics "forever." Other than maybe William Jennings Bryan's campaigns in the late 1890s, fundamentalists have been notably absent from electoral politics in this country until they were captured by the Republicans in the 1970s/1980s. Nixon's "Silent Majority" morphed into the "Moral Majority" that has powered Republican wins ever since then. Before that? Not so much as a peep in either party.
      This is mainly because fundamentalists had previously believed that all politics were ungodly (literally); the path to true salvation could only be achieved through spirituality, and in some cases, retreating from the material world entirely. Perhaps the Mormon experience showed the way, paradoxically enough, since they earlier realized that the best way of maintaining their religious freedom/independence was through capturing governmental offices in Utah, thereby ensuring control over local law creation and enforcement. But this example was not replicated on a national scale for decades.

  •  Good Thing Our News Media Is On The Ball (8+ / 0-)

    I would hate to think what effect the Santorums of the world would have if they were faced with nothing but a sniveling, smarmy and fawning Fourth Estate.

    This head movie makes my eyes rain.

    by The Lone Apple on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:31:37 AM PDT

  •  Rhetoric is overrated, (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Quicklund, cardinal, native, Matt Z, Fogiv

    at least presidential rhetoric.  The trouble is, each side has competent message people.  We can debate strategies, but the fact is voters hear what they want to hear.  Layoff is more useful in explaining how we can talk to our neighbors, though.  

    I do think we need someone in the admin running a "proxy primary," though.  Let Biden be Biden.  Still, nobody is complacent, and letting the GOP pull itself so hard to the right has itsnadvantage.  Voters are not empty vessels, they see this moving the conversation for what it is, only it's not so abstract like talk of Keynesian multipliers anymore so it has less a chance to work.  

    Anyway, Lakoff is talking his book.  

    The study of law was certainly a strange discipline. -- Yukio Mishima

    by Loge on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:34:25 AM PDT

  •  Organizing for America (13+ / 0-)

    has opened offices in all major cities and are now doing the same in smaller cities. Action starts now including data entry, calling those who were active for Obama in 08 and 10 and voter reg. Voter registration drives are on right now. The majority of those who register through OFA actually vote vs. those who register online or are registered by other entities.
    Get busy early on, GOTV. Time is now.

    Please sign the White House petition to Flush Rush from AFN (Armed Forces Network).

    by OleHippieChick on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:45:37 AM PDT

  •  Can't thank you enough, eXtina (8+ / 0-)

    It is absolutely crucial that we get out our hopeful, empathic, moral message.

    The Republicans are working to sway Independent voters to their side. We can not afford to allow them to win the messaging.

    Fair's fair. I don't vote in your church; don't go preaching in my government. - Crashing Vor

    by Onomastic on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:52:05 AM PDT

  •  400 years of America leading to the end of empire (9+ / 0-)

    The cultural historian Morris Berman has completed his trilogy. I have read the middle volume 3 times and find his insights and arguments compelling. He saw now way out of the decline and it has taken me a couple of years to accept this. My background is in science, so the amount of history and social science to learn and get my arms around has taken a lot of time.

    The middle volume, published in 2006, but written before 2005 is "Dark Ages America: The Final Stage of Empire." In the Introduction he describes three topics which point to his conclusion. The Triumph of Religion over Reason. The breakdown of education and critical thinking. the Legalization of Torture. As he notes, what could be more medieval than torture?

    Here are three paragraphs from an interview

    http://www.alternet.org/...

    **

    Morris Berman: The first book in the series, The Twilight of American Culture (2000), is a structural analysis, or internal comparison, of the contemporary US and the late Roman Empire. In it, I identified factors that were central to the fall of Rome and showed that they were present in the US today. I said that if we didn’t address these, we were doomed. I didn’t believe for a moment we would, of course, and now the results are obvious.

    After 9/11, I realized that my comparison with Rome lacked one crucial component: like Rome, we were attacked from the outside. Dark Ages America (2006), the sequel to Twilight, is an analysis of US foreign policy and its relationship to domestic policy, once again arguing that there had to be a serious reevaluation of both if we were to arrest the disintegration of the nation. Of course, no such reevaluation took place, and we are now in huge economic trouble with no hope of recovery, and stuck in two wars in the Middle East that we cannot seem to win.

    By the time I sat down to write the third volume, Why America Failed, I was past the point of issuing warnings. The book is basically a postmortem for a dying nation. The argument is that we failed for reasons that go back more than 400 years. As a result, the historical momentum to not undertake a reassessment, and just continue on with business as usual, is very powerful. At this point we can no more reverse our downward trajectory than we can turn around an aircraft carrier in a bathtub.

  •  i was thinking exactly this... (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Chi, native, Betty Pinson, Lily O Lady, Sylv
    It is about using conservative language to strengthen conservative values in the brains of voters
    when the grand old pervert party announced early last fall they would have over 20 presidential debates

    imo gopers have been allowed to spread their propaganda repeatedly and consistently to the masses..........wtf

  •  so they've read books on how memory is made (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Chi, Betty Pinson, Lily O Lady

    and maintained .. WHY HAVEN'T WE READ AND APPLIED THESE CONCEPTS??

    it's science after all

    for fucks sake!

    Bumper sticker seen on I-95; "Stop Socialism" my response: "Don't like socialism? GET OFF the Interstate highway!"

    by Clytemnestra on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:07:45 AM PDT

  •  thanks for diary eXtina... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Betty Pinson

    liberals/progressives/democrats (whichever you choose to identify as) **absolutely must get their message out now** !

  •  Not to disagree but now we have the chance (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Don midwest, Quicklund, eXtina

    This election gives us an opportunity to shoot down failed Neocon ideology point by point. The result of this can be seen in the struggle of the 99% and I think that this grassroots message will do more for liberalism than the Democratic party would.

  •  What if OWS or Move On or even (9+ / 0-)

    dKos creates viral type ads to send out pounding a progressive message. We have the talent (self excluded) to do just that. It doesn't have to be a big production just youtubed and tweeted and fb'ed.

    Congress is at 9% approval rating - within the +/- of making herpes more popular than congress! - Webranding

    by glitterscale on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:47:11 AM PDT

  •  Why we should stop the GOP horse race on this site (13+ / 0-)
    You think with your brain. You have no alternative. Brain circuitry strengthens with repeated activation. And language, far from being neutral, activates complex brain circuitry that is rooted in conservative and liberal moral systems. Conservative language, even when argued against, activates and strengthens conservative brain circuitry. This is extremely important for so-called "independents," who actually have both conservative and liberal moral systems in their brains and can shift back and forth. The more they hear conservative language over the next eight months, the more their conservative brain circuitry will be strengthened.
    This is also why the "long race = weakened GOP" is a fallacy. The GOP is controlling the discourse, even to the extent of the majority of the front page stories here.

    We should be focusing on the President's successes, the positive agenda, and attacking the Republican memes directly instead of this ridiculous, backfiring attempt to pretend we can have an impact on the GOP nomination race, e.g. Operation Hilarity.

    By all means let the GOP have their civil war. But let's not help them triumph by claiming our corner of the discourse.

    Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

    by TheCrank on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:52:48 AM PDT

  •  What? That's outrageous! (7+ / 0-)
    He says the antidote to this is to counter with positive messaging promoting liberal moral values.
    What we're supposed to do is register as Republicans and vote in their primaries for the sicko we think might somehow make them have a sad.  Isn't it OBVIOUS?  

    When the truth is only a matter of opinion, advantage goes to the liars.

    by Sun dog on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:54:18 AM PDT

  •  I submit that (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, native, mmacdDE, Don midwest, eXtina

    it's been going on longer than that

    It is part of a permanent campaign that has been going on since the Gingrich revolution of 1994
    I first encountered the old, white men with their card tables and gory leaflets at a country fair in the mid-70s.

    It was clear then, and it's clear now, that they are not operating in the same category of rational thought as the rest of the world. They are driven with the wild-eyed fanaticism of zealots.

    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.." -- Isaac Asimov

    by Mnemosyne on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:00:02 AM PDT

  •  Thanks! We must get this across. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Betty Pinson, eXtina

    These people know what they are doing and laughing our way to the gallows is a big mistake!

    An idea is not responsible for who happens to be carrying it at the moment. It stands or falls on its own merits.

    by don mikulecky on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:03:50 AM PDT

  •  If Lakoff is correct (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Quicklund, New Rule, Chi, native, offgrid, eXtina

    (Overton window and all that), then it seems to me that the Democratic response is exactly what it ought to be.

    Many Democrats are reacting either with glee ("their field is so ridiculously weak and wacky." -- Maureen Dowd), with outrage (their deficit-reduction proposals would actually raise the deficit -- Paul Krugman), or with incredulity ("Why we're debating a woman's access to birth control is beyond me." -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz). Hendrik Hertzberg dismissed the ultra-conservatives as "a kick line of clowns, knaves, and zealots."
    This message is also being structured in brain circuitry.

    To react to Republican radicalism with serious counter arguments would just further legitimize their extreme views, it seems to me.

    Light is seen through a small hole.

    by houyhnhnm on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:18:48 AM PDT

  •  We must remember (5+ / 0-)

    by and large conservatives tend to have lower IQs then progressives.  They don't get nuance.  Things are black and white.  So for those independents that lean conservative we need to speak in black and whites.  We as progressives believe in:  responsibility, that women can make their own decisions about their health care.  that we have a responsibility to help our neighbor, that all men are created equal and should be treated accordingly, etc.  As oppose to we're pro-choice, pro-medicaid, pro-social security, and pro-afirmative action, or whatever.

    We need to set the tone and create the language that will be used in 2012 to frame the argument for Obama.

    Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. ~JFK

    by TheUrbanRevolution on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:34:45 AM PDT

    •  BS (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      lets not dehumanize or demean people in this manner.  it's disgusting when repubs do it, lets not do it ourselves.  

      getting out there with positive messages will do more to change peoples mind.  if we just go out there and tell repubs that they don't get nuance, see in black-and-white, and have low IQs, then we have automatically lost them to the repubs without trying.

  •  lakoff is wrong in the sense that it's not these (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jdsnebraska, eXtina

    candidates that are selling the memes- they are reinforcing, like fox TV,  what has already been established BY RADIO repetition (unchallenged) from 1000 radio stations over the last 20 years.

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and partisan lying by broadcasting sports on Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:38:52 AM PDT

  •  Rachel and all of us fall into the TRAP (6+ / 0-)

    I have a lot more on file about brain science which we all need to learn--the GOP has been using it very effectively.

    SNIPPETS:

    The book:
    http://www.powells.com/...


    "What Orwell Didn't Know: Propaganda and the New Face of American Politics"

    Edited by ANDRÁS SZÁNTÓ

    "As Lakoff tells us,

    'A few words in political language can activate large portions of the brain: War on Terror, tax relief, illegal immigration, entitlements (turned to conservative use by Ronald Reagan), death tax, property rights, abortion on demand, cut and run, flip-flop, school choice, intelligent design, spending programs, partial birth abortion, surge, spreading freedom, private accounts, individual responsibility, energy independence.

    When they are repeated every day, extensive areas of the brain are activated over and over, and this leads to brain change. Unerasable brain change…. And every time the words are repeated, all the frames and metaphors and worldview structures are activated again and strengthened -- because recurring activation strengthens neural connections. Negation doesn't help. "I'm against the War on Terror" just activates the War on Terror metaphor and strengthens what you're against. Accepting the language of issue and arguing the other side just hurts your own cause.'

    Drew Westen, a psychology professor and political consultant, supports Lakoff's statements as well as his contention that in America these techniques have been exploited far more intelligently by the political right than by the center and left, which are hampered by what Soros calls "the Enlightenment fallacy" -- that is, the fallacious assumption (dating from the 18th century) that freedom of thought and speech will ensure that reason will prevail. The media and the Democratic leadership, Westen says, are unwittingly "smuggling Trojan horses into popular discourse" by parroting terminology created by those in power, "essentially advertising the 'product line' of the Republican party and selling its 'brand.' "

    George Lakoff, an author and professor of linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley who calls himself a "cognitive activist," says this: "One of the fundamental findings of cognitive science is that people think in terms of frames and metaphors – conceptual structures. The frames are in the synapses of our brains – physically present in the form of neural circuitry. When the facts don't fit the frames, the frames are kept and the facts ignored."
    In other words, forget winning on the facts or the science. It's all about the story. And once stories take hold, they're hard to dislodge. "
    http://www.alternet.org/...
  •  agreed but it also maps it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    one now knows where the conservative votes reside.

  •  Our choices (4+ / 0-)

    a radical conservative future with the Rubes, or a mainstream establishment conservative future with the Dems.  I have no place in the future of this nation.

    The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike from sleeping under bridges. ~ Anatole France

    by ActivistGuy on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:51:25 AM PDT

    •  The word "conservative" is being constantly used (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Catte Nappe, Betty Pinson, Sylv, eXtina

      to describe candidates and viewpoints that are anything but conservative. I think we should be calling attention to the egregious misuse of this word.

      The word "conservative" doesn't belong to these right-wing radicals, and we should reclaim it ASAP. Never use this word to describe them. And whenever we hear it so used, we should take the opportunity to explain why it's not right.

      "Here's another nice mess you've gotten me into." - Oliver Hardy

      by native on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:29:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  this sounds wrong... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina
    The Democratic strategy of getting the independent women's vote for Obama is not sufficient, because independent women may still vote for their local conservative leaders as the strict fathers they want to see in office.
    I'd like to see and explanation of this, does he mean independent women long to have strict men in charge of their lives? Or what?

    Over all I'd still disagree that just by hearing a debate of both sides somehow means "conservative values" are stuck in peoples minds. That makes no sense to me. If both sides are heard and debated liberal ideas are just as likely to be imbedded in peoples minds, right? So I'll take my chances on an open and free debate and let an informed populance decide.

    America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

    by cacamp on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:55:18 AM PDT

    •  But if the debate (4+ / 0-)

      is between radical conservatism and establishment conservatism, I guaranty that what gets stuck in people's minds is conservatism.

      The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike from sleeping under bridges. ~ Anatole France

      by ActivistGuy on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 09:56:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This isn't just happening on TV (4+ / 0-)

      The talking points that are heard in the debates are circulating around and around in evangelical churches, the think tanks that influence the media, the right wing talk show circuit, and in the general culture of the evangelical right.  

      The intent that a great deal of money and effort has been invested in over the years is in fact, changing the whole debate and moving America in a more conservative direction, according to evangelical lights.

      The debates are just a slice of this.  

      hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

      by Stuart Heady on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:22:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This is one of his tropes: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      Republicans are the party of the strict father and the Dems are the loving mother. Some/many (?) people want a strict father who knows all to protect them from the evils of the world, and Republican pols play up their authority, manliness, and fearlessness to appeal to those who want this kind of protection. As you note correctly but infer incorrectly, independent women usually don't look for that in others, which is why they vote overwhelmingly D. Dems can't/don't offer that kind of paternalist image, but instead appeal to those who are more caring of others, much like a mother tends to behave toward her children.

      •  not really, a democrat said it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        I merely repeated what he stated as a truth. If he didn't mean it his explanation was lacking not my inference, get it?

        America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

        by cacamp on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:55:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not sure to what you are (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina

          referring anymore. Lakoff's trope is what I was talking about, and your mention of his description of the Republican party's appeal. I would be seriously surprised if, anywhere in his work, he says "independent women" would ever consider voting for a Republican.

          •  he said they want a strict father in charge (0+ / 0-)

            By 'they' I meant he said it about 'independent women'. Go check it out if you don't believe me, you'll be seriously surprised, I was.

            America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

            by cacamp on Thu Mar 15, 2012 at 07:51:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, you are right about this, that's for sure. (0+ / 0-)

              I apologize for not reading the full thread each time I responded. This statement is odd; I wonder if the full context of the quote makes it more clear. As it stands, I think we both would agree it is hogwash.

  •  I'm so sick of the goofy DK pictures of candidates (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orestes1963, eXtina

    and all the - Ha, Ha - mocking that goes on here, but I'm not sure Lakoff has the solution (even thought he understands this much better than I do).

    first the mockery undermines DK readers ability to take opposition seriously, as we should.

    second, (as pointed out), it keeps the absurd ideas in circulation, something I'm, and I'm sure others, have become resigned to, which is not what you want.

    I guess I just need some examples of positive, moral messaging....ideas?

    People, not corporations. Democracy, not totalitarian capitalism.

    by democracy is coming on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:08:45 AM PDT

  •  Lakoff is spot on (4+ / 0-)

    There is no liberal voice that is being consistently heard.

    It occurs to me just now that this is what happens when Democrats are in power:  the leading Democrat becomes the voice of the left.

    It is as if liberals don't have a voice now because in the mainstream media, President Obama is the default voice of the left.  Or, it is Senator Reid.  Once in awhile we get lucky and Minority Leader Pelosi gets some play in the media.

    This is something to consider.  This is where there may have been value in a primary "challenge from the left" for President Obama.  Imagine if Russ Feingold had decided to mix it up with President Obama, based on the issues and liberal morality/values.  No ad hominem attacks.  

    The media would probably have covered it and people would have heard, repeatedly, an elucidation of solid, liberal values.  

    President Obama has said that we the people must make him implement the change the he promised.  A really great primary challenge from the left -- symbolically representing all of us on the left -- may have been a perfect vehicle for "making him do it".

    •  I agree! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      If President Obama had to go up against liberals or progressives as far-Left as Santorum and Gingrich are far-Right, think of the value we would have seen!

      I can't even imagine where they would go after they all demanded Universal Healthcare "during the inauguration speech!"

  •  Campaigns don't decide anything. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Betty Pinson, eXtina

    Actual decisionmaking does.  This is just more of the same tired Elmer Fudd stuff.  Be VEWWY VEWWY quiet about what's really going on.

    "nobody can do everything but everybody can do something." -- Gil Scott-Heron

    by Cassiodorus on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:23:43 AM PDT

  •  I Disagree (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sylv, eXtina

    There is a difference between "taking them seriously" and marginalizing their regressive ideas.  People of good conscience have to point out how extreme the GOP positions are.  Use whatever messaging is required to reach your audience. If it requires jokes, use jokes.  Sometimes humor is a deadly weapon to an ideology when used effectively.  The key thing though is to use it effectively.

    •  Poll after poll shows that the public is with us (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      on most if not all of the issues that the GOP has been trying to exploit to use against Obama & Dems, e.g. birth control, gay marriage, entitlement spending, the deficit, etc. The only one that might be working is gas prices, but that won't last, because prices will eventually go down, and they stop being as important once fall sets in. This is ours to lose, not theirs to win.

      I'm tired of all the chicken littleism on our side.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:08:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina
        I'm tired of all the chicken littleism on our side.
        Amen to that.  The hard right are bullies, and they are only as powerful as the rest of us allow them to be.  Stand up to them, ridicule them, treat them like as you would a  12 year old (emotionally they are about 12 after all), but do not allow them to intimidate.  
        •  This is by far my biggest problem with Digby (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina

          and people who see things as she does. I.e. things are bad and they're only going to get worse, and there's nothing we can do about it other than to document it as it happens. The right is omnipotent, we're powerless, and that's just that.

          I'm sure that she and they don't truly believe this. But they come across as being so spent and defeated by decades of attack from the right, that they appear to believe this. I'm guessing that most of these types are middle aged middle class whites who grew up with a certain sense of privilege, which, having been violated, they can't seem to move beyond, not quite grasping that liberalism is not an end state, but something you keep fighting for against the forces of reaction.

          I.e. stop whining about how they moved your cheese--move it back, dammit!

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:21:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  More (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina

            I think that it goes against the grain of most gentle people to fight, because they believe in peace and harmony, and strive to live that way.  I know because that is how I aspire to live my life.  But I also know that the hard right has zero respect for harmony and only understands one thing: power.   As such, the minute you surrender to their bullying and lies is the minute you've surrendered your power to them.

            Don't do it.  I know people are tired, weary, and feel beaten down by forty years of right wing bullshit.  But this is NOT a time to give up.  In one respect Santorum is correct, 2012 is the most important election in our lifetime.  It is the tipping point, and if hard right conservatism is rejected this cycle, it will fall into further disarray and chaos, and they know it.

            So those who feel beaten down, don't surrender your power to the them.  Stand up!  Now is the time.

            •  I can understand why some people feel defeated (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              eXtina, Calee4nia

              I can respect that. Everyone has a breaking point and it's unfair to ask them to push past it. What I don't like is when such people insist on making the rest of us wallow in their mire. Depression and resignation are contagious.

              If anyone thinks that we're screwed, keep it to yourself, please.

              Also, the far right isn't merely about power, but total and absolute power, or dominance. They are authoritarians at heart. They need to either dominate, or be dominated. There is no in-between, which to them is incredibly stressful. And since most of life is in-between, they are usually in high stress.

              Conservatism is basically a maladaptive but quite logical attempt to deal with the particular form of mental illness that they suffer from--ambiguphobia.

              Yeah, I just made up that word, but you know what I mean.

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:35:47 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  QFT (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                eXtina
                ...the far right isn't merely about power, but total and absolute power, or dominance. They are authoritarians at heart. They need to either dominate, or be dominated. There is no in-between, which to them is incredibly stressful. And since most of life is in-between, they are usually in high stress.
                You've succinctly described the problem, and this is something Democrats need to understand.  
  •  Candidates for public office parading behind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    the elephants are all fakes.  

    fake patriots
    fake preachers
    fake businessmen
    fake orators
    fake pitchmen

    People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

    by hannah on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:29:51 AM PDT

    •  Fake moral leaders, fake conservatives... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hannah, eXtina

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:09:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, I think the contrast between fake and (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        real is stronger than the pairing of "faith-based" and "reality based" by Dubya's acolyte.  Or even "idealist" as some of the ideologues proclaim.

        He's a fake.  That's the kind of statement that will be difficult to deal with, especially since it's true.  Other than Ron Paul, the candidates' military expertise is fake.

        People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

        by hannah on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:33:03 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  But a lot of voters LIKE the fake (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina

          Because they themselves have an overinflated view of themselves that deep down they know or at least fear is BS, and so look up to political and other leaders who themselves are quite fake, to prop up the facade. It's a "Revenge of the Losers" circle jerk mentality, and since the country has so many "losers", either economically or in terms of character or sophistication, and so many of them are unable or unwilling to see themselves as they really are and maybe try to do something about it (duh!), a lot of them flock to these leaders.

          The success of the New Deal was bound to leave a lot of people behind and lead to a backlash among those who either didn't benefit as much from it, or were reeling from the changes it brought about, and the conservative era was exactly that, exploiting these people with its fake ideology and leaders. On a less noxious scale, it's not that different from how the Nazis got a large portion of disaffected Germans to support them. It's the same basic phenomenon.

          I.e. demagoguery.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:04:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Agreed. Lots of people fall for fakes. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina

            However, I would argue they do not want to be associated with fakes.  Pointing out a fake takes a bit of glitter off.  Fakery is not something most people want to be associated with.  Indeed, much of the skepticism towards health care for all is likely connected to everyone knowing someone who's faking it all the time.
            So, being on the look-out for fakes is a net positive.

            Now, people who deal in fake IDs aren't going to be too keen to have fakery as a staple of conversation, but that's too bad.  Not to mention that the topic might just wake some people up to the fact that this whole voter ID thing is ridiculous once one takes fake IDs into account.

            People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

            by hannah on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:13:56 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The hard part is proving it (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

              We live in a culture of illusion, from fake reality shows to fake FB friends to an obsession with looks to fake ideologies. A lot of people, even when shown that their ideals and idols are fake, continue to pretend otherwise, because they don't want to admit having been duped, and are so wired into the fakeness, they have a hard time seeing it. Our society suffers fromo a collective addition to illusion, that the conservative movement keyed in on, exploited, and has been promoting. It's not going to be so easy to wean people off of that, this whole myth of the self-reliant rugged individual who wants government off his back so they can work their American Exceptionalism wonders on the free market. Just make sure to keep building those roads and sending me those Social Security checks and covering my Medicare dammit--and lower my taxes while you're at it!

              We are a nation of deluded infantiles as dependant on RW myths as we are on government help. Something's gotta give, as they're incompatible. You can't have your conservative ideology AND your liberal government policies.

              PICK ONE ALREADY, PEOPLE!

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:39:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Revelation Says Xtians Will Worship False Prophets (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                eXtina

                I like to remind them that whenever they think they have found The One, the Bible is very explicit that all they are doing is pushing to front of the line to worship The Beast.

                There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

                by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:01:06 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Hand wringing over the wrong issue (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    This has been going on for 30 years, it's nothing new and hasn't stopped us from electing democratic presidents and congresses. The elephant in the room that nobody talks about is the one that could almost certainly gaurantee a loss for president and down ballot as well is gas prices.

    At $4 a gallon it will be very difficult to overcome, but nobody is talking about $4 a gallon, they are talking about $5 a gallon, and at that price Obama won't have a snowball's chance in hell of getting re-elected, same for down ballot democrats. So if you want to hand wring, there's your issue, because there is very little that we can do about it and nobody will give a damn about republican concepts and messaging.

    "crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government" -Thomas Jefferson

    by Phil In Denver on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 10:40:13 AM PDT

    •  Gas prices always go up in the spring and summer (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

      and back down in the fall. If they don't, there are various things Obama can do to either lower them, like open up the petroleum reserve, or make it look like he's doing something to lower them, like go after speculators and oil companies.

      I don't think Repubs can beat him on gas prices. In congress, though, they could do some damage. I suspect that that's their strategy now.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:02:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Obama might be able to tweak (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        prices a little, but only by pennies, when gas hits $4 a gallon there will be a noticable drag on the economy, and if it hits $5, it will become a severe drag. Obama will of course get the blame and it will cost him big. People downplay this but they should not. It's a big deal, and republicans know it and have already begun to whip it.

        "crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government" -Thomas Jefferson

        by Phil In Denver on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:13:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  There is a difference (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    between mockery and complacency.

    Like it or not, mockery is extremely effective, as Gore and Kerry will tell you.

    You can take them very seriously, and do everything possible to defeat them, while using mockery as a tactic.

    The GOP: "You can always go to the Emergency Room."

    by Upper West on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:01:52 AM PDT

  •  If 1's enough & 2 is too much,4 must be just right (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    It's bad enough to have one political party engaged in a 24/7 fact-free bulls..t-o-rama, why not both of them?

    I refer the reader to the NYT book review by William Saletan, a self-described "liberal Republican," indeed, but to me, his criticism of Lakoff rings true

    http://www.nytimes.com/...

    "Lakoff’s agenda follows. In place of neoliberalism, he offers neuroliberalism. Since voters’ opinions are neither logical nor self-made, they should be altered, not obeyed. Politicians should “not follow polls but use them to see how they can change public opinion to their moral worldview.” And since persuasion is mechanical, progressives should rely less on facts and more on images and drama, “casting progressives as heroes, and by implication, conservatives as villains.” The key is to “say things not once, but over and over. Brains change when ideas are repeatedly activated...It’s hard to take Lakoff’s neurodeterminism seriously if you know any science. As he acknowledges, current brain-imaging technology is far too crude to see specific neural activity. Cores? Narrative structures? Issue-to-worldview binding? It’s all speculation. ”

    My take is that Lakoff and his evil twin Frank Luntz appear to be arguing in favor of a nation where facts and truth are irrelevant and where everyone lies and/or bulls..ts to one another.

    Humbuggery to the nth power.

    •  I Respectively Disagree With You (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Betty Pinson, eXtina

      Science and economics can tell you what the possibilities are. Morals are used to determine which possibilities to take.

    •  I disagree too. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      Lakoff is merely pointing out that Luntz is winning, and Lakoff is pointing out how Luntz is winning. And Luntz will keep winning until we counter his tactics.

      Embracing a progressive version of Luntzian NewSpeak is a strategy that runs counter to liberal ideals. But, as the dream of liberalism slips further and further away, we might need to embrace it.

      If "moral messaging" can be used to win the battle of public opinion in spite of the facts, then it can also be employed to win the battle of public opinion in favor of the facts.

  •  Part of the Republican strategy ... (5+ / 0-)

    ... is to get liberals to argue against them, repeating conservative language.

    You see a major example of it in this post:

    "The Democrats lost the House in 2010 because Republicans beat them with moral arguments ('freedom' and 'life) about Obamacare, even though people agreed with the policy contained in the legislation."

    There is no such thing as Obamacare. It is a phony pejorative term made up by Republicans to connote a government takeover of health care and to associate it with the President.

    There is such a thing as the Affordable Care Act. The Republicans cannot win a public battle over the Affordable Care Act. But, they can invent such a thing as Obamacare and then win the public opinion battle over that fictional thing.

  •  Lakoff is Right On Again (3+ / 0-)

    We liberals have got to get out of our minds that persuasion is Orwellian and immoral. We've got to get out of mind that we can argue only using facts. The facts tell us what the possibilities are, but morals tell us which possibilities we choose to take.

    Humans are emotional and moral beings, too. I find it funny how conservatives in economics argue about Rational Expectations and that morals and emotions play no role in economic decision making. It's the liberals who argue that morals and emotions must be used to describe economics. Yet, in politics, its the conservatives who recognize that morals and emotions play a powerful role in voter decision making.

    What the conservatives do by always pushing right, while liberals try to chase the center in order to win elections, is move the Overton Window to the right.

  •  I'm not convinced (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GOPGO2H3LL, eXtina

    This comes across as yet more Chicken Littleish we're always going to lose to the big bad conservative bear no matter what we do concern trollism to me. What else can we do to counter the far-right and its crazy and destructive ideas but smack them down at every turn and offer up our own far better and saner ideas? Why do people like Lakoff always assume that Americans will always listen to Cons over Libs? What does he propose that we do differently?

    To assume that the other side will always win is to guarantee it.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:58:26 AM PDT

    •  He proposes that we actually talk about (4+ / 0-)

      progressive values instead of just reacting to the GOP.

      There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

      by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:16:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But Obama's been doing this nonstop (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        So have many Dems. We're no longer apologizing for our liberalism or as quickly accepting RW frames when attacked by the right. Where has Lakoff been this past year? Sure, we can do better, but things are improving.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:40:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Lakoff has been saying this for a while (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

          And the president is doing a damn good job of following his advice.  The problem is that too many Dems are not, even here a DKos.

          There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 01:44:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  How is this being done here? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

            No need to single anyone out, just give me an idea of how.

            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

            by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:15:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, in general there is a huge focus on (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

              stuff that the republicans say as opposed to focusing on  progressive values.  If you look at the front page it contains far too many stories about some crappy thing a GOP candidate said.  This occurs on the rec list to some extent, although less than elsewhere.  But really, how often do you see a diary about an awesome candidate and the great things they stand for?  Not in a good news sort of way, but in a spreading the message sort of way.  

              It reminds me of what I tried to tell people who consistently said that OWS needed to get into elections. Show people candidates that are exciting and progressive and that will happen.  Alan Grayson is a great model for what that can look like.  No, he isn't perfect but he was forward in both condemning the GOP and extolling progressive values.  It isn't a bad thing to single out the GOP and point out what's wrong with them, but that is a defensive game, we need more offence.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:24:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I partly agree (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                AoT, eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

                I do believe that it's necessary and helpful to call out all these GOP attacks on sound policies and liberal values, so they don't get away with it. But one, we have to do it within the broader public, and not just amongst ourselves, and two, we also have to shine a spotlight on the merits and successes of these policies and values, and on the Dems who've most actively and effectively promoted them.

                "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:29:17 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I agree with that (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

                  The problem is that calling out the republicans seems to be the main part of what this site does now.  Do we really need an FP article every time Romney does or says something hypocritical?

                  There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                  by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:37:25 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  No (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows, AoT

                    Nor do Rachel, Keith, Ed, Lawrence, etc. It's getting to be quite monotonous and counterproductive, and I think that's intentional by the GOP--keep distracting away from the real issues by continually manufacturing these fake controversies.

                    We still haven't figured out how to take the lead on the issues--or that we need to, and can. We're still very much in reactive mode. That has to stop.

                    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                    by kovie on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:41:08 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Seriously, go scroll down the front page (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

              right now.  There's one story about a Dem that stands out, and that's just on Reid, hardly a progressive.  There needs to be more stories like the ones about laws forcing men to get invasive exams to get Viagra.  That was still about what people were talking about, but it was pushing progressive values and showing why women needed control of their body.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:28:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Tipped and recommended (4+ / 0-)

    A definite must read.

    "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win." --Gandhi

    by alaprst on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:04:37 PM PDT

  •  Every damn one of us is a "values" voter. (6+ / 0-)

    Empathy, compassion, and responsibility are DEFINITELY values, and of the very best kind.

    So this slippery slope in the messagin wars, has been going on for quite a while.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:15:38 PM PDT

  •  Fuck that shit. (3+ / 0-)

    You wanna take down the GOP?

    Billboards and ads with a pic of a transvag ultrasound wand with the words "Republican Small Government" under it will do the trick.

    Don't overcomplicate it, people.  Render the GOP kryptonite to women and it's game over.

    Obama is at war with radical anti-American terrorists. The radical GOP is at war with American women. Take that and run with it DNC, you inept fucking pikers.

    by GOPGO2H3LL on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 12:37:37 PM PDT

  •  Precisely why OWS and "99%" are critical. (3+ / 0-)

    This is the point of entry to get economic & social justice back on the table, rather than endless austerity, hippy-punching and blaming the victims of the Banksters' meltdown.

  •  I couldn't agree more. (3+ / 0-)

    This is not a clown car. It is a strategy to dominate the news with Republican ideas for months: 21 "debates"? Really? Freely covered by the media and promoted by the media as well?

    And what do they do at these so-called debates? Pound Obama, for free.  No ads required.

    Romney was always the nominee. Santorum has been a useful idiot. Gingrich is a little smarter and has been funded in the race for the purpose of holding Santorum back, so that Romney can win. Sheldon Adelson doesn't really want Gingrich to win. He wants Gingrich to rein in Santorum, who doesn't understand this is a game.

    The Republicans successfully punked the media -- and us-- into thinking this was a competition or a horse race. It wasn't. It was a prolonged propaganda push. Mission accomplished.

    The other purpose of Gingrich and Santorum was to pound this message across: MITT IS A MODERATE! In fact, that is the word they use, in case you missed it. They say he is "Too moderate". Code word to independents that Mitt is acceptable and not nutsy.

    It all went right over Democratic heads. We should have been questioning when a debate is a debate and not just a free publicity stunt.

    •  wow, you are right (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Killer of Sacred Cows, averybird

      I never thought of it that way. What is a criticism for extremists GOP will be a plus in the general.

      The other purpose of Gingrich and Santorum was to pound this message across: MITT IS A MODERATE! In fact, that is the word they use, in case you missed it. They say he is "Too moderate". Code word to independents that Mitt is acceptable and not nutsy.

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:07:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I Get Tired of Watching Us Debunking Them (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, Killer of Sacred Cows

    What Lakoff says strikes a chord with me because I've often felt like our TV friends like Keith and Rachel (and Stewart and Colbert too) and their Democratic guests spend so much precious time talking about how what the right says is wrong and stupid but we don't often hear the right answers, the progressive answers enunciated forthrightly so that people can just compare and judge for themselves.

    On a separate tangent, the entire political spectrum is being turned on its ear today and it needs to be pointed out that there's nothing conservative about advocating going back to policies that we abandoned 70 years ago because they didn't work then.  And here we are being called socialists when we defend "Obamacare" which was the most CONSERVATIVE MARKET-BASED approach possible to the insurance problem (mandates), first proposed by the Heritage Foundation.  Cap and Trade is the most CONSERVATIVE MARKET-BASED approach to regulating greenhouse gasses, but it too is called socialism.  The fact that the debate was allowed to be bent and twisted in such a way is a complete failure on the part of the Democratic communications machine and of course. the media.

    Poor man wanna be rich Rich man wanna be king And a King ain't satisfied Till he rules everything

    by jetfan on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 02:08:46 PM PDT

  •  Call This A "Fascist Movement".....Because It Is (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, a2nite, Killer of Sacred Cows

    Label them with the way they call us "Socialists."

    Feel free to browse my diaries of the last 5 years for pointers.

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:03:15 PM PDT

    •  How do we start? nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, Killer of Sacred Cows

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:08:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Heap Abuse On Them In Local Forums (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

        Whenever someone says "liberals are fascists," attack without mercy:

        Traditionally, America does not have a "Fascist Party," because American Fascists call themselves "anti-Fascists."

        What did the Fascist do? Here's a checklist of what Fascists do:

         Blaming the "liberal media"  
         Anti-intellectualism
         Attacking unions  
         Promoting marriage, discouraging contraception  
         Racial purity
         Purging immigrants  
         Military fetishism  
         Eternal war  
         Promising state religion  
         Downgrading teaching as an actual profession
         Promising to prevent class struggle
         Claiming their opponents are part of a vast leftist conspiracy
         Accusing their opponents of "envy"
         Censorship of pornography and art
         An offical language
         Attacking multiculturalism
         Nostalgia
         Paranoia

        The follow up is this:
        You sir are lying about what the Fascists were.  What happened to "never forget?" When Facism returns it will be because of people like you. YOU  ARE A FACIST/ NAZI APOLOGIST.  HEY EVERYONE LOOK AT THE WIMPY FASCIST WHO WON'T COME OUT OF THE CLOSET.  Man up and go get that swastika tattoo you've always wanted.
        I actually do that and it works pretty well.
        REeally? Nazis were liberals (or socialists?). Well that is a popular opinion for HOLOCAUST DENIERS. Because of Hitler was really a "leftist" then he probably did not actually kill all those Socialist Jews, did he?
        And of course
        Really the Nazis were "socialists?" It's called National Socialism because lots of parties were called Socialists, including Hitlers sworn enemies the National Socialists, who stood for elected parlimentary government.  National "socialism" was Strasserism, which was more popular in the north, while Hitler's branch controlled southern Germany.  Hitler exiled the Strassers in 1929 and had them exterminated in 1934 in the Night of The Long Knives.  The  Strasser "socialist" wanted a military junta of army officers, but Hitler had them killed because he was a monarchist who wanted one man rule based on racist paranoid  conspiracy theories.  The Nazi "socialists" were all dead by 1935, and they had nothing to do with the Nazi party that killed the Jews and who we fought in WW2.  WHY ARE LYING ABOUT WHAT THE NAZIS WERE? YOU ARE A NAZI APOLOGIST, YOU ARE A HITLER APOLOGIST. HEY EVERYONE LOOK AT THE NAZI APOLOGIST.
        Then when that person posts another message, just stalk them and say
        WHAT ARE YOU STILL DOING HERE YOU HITLER LOVING NAZI APOLOGIST? GO PLAY WITH YOUR TOY PANZER TANKS.
        This works pretty well.

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 06:52:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Peole Who Say Nazis Are Leftists Are Closet Nazis (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina
        Whenever someone says "Nazis were leftists," pretty much everything they say after that is going to be from Mein Kampf or Hitler.  What did Hitler claim he was doing?

        What did the Fascist do? Here's a checklist of what Fascists do:

         Blaming the "liberal media"  
         Anti-intellectualism
         Attacking unions  
         Promoting marriage, discouraging contraception  
         Racial purity
         Purging immigrants  
         Military fetishism  
         Eternal war  
         Promising state religion  
         Downgrading teaching as an actual profession
         Promising to prevent class struggle
         Claiming their opponents are part of a vast leftist conspiracy
         Accusing their opponents of "envy"
         Censorship of pornography and art
         An offical language
         Attacking multiculturalism
         Nostalgia
         Paranoia

        If these are your politics, you aren't an "anti-Fascist" you are a FASCIST, and probably an inbred brain damaged meth head.

        Or how about this?
        Really? "All dictatorships are the product of the left?" Well considering you have complete control of the moral high ground, I'd say it's essential that you get right to work building gas chambers and crematoria to make sure that your righteousness will be full of win.

        Are you getting the point? You declared yourself to be the completely pure  "anti-Fascist" and then you adopted the moral absolutism of a genocidal madman.  Your beliefs are straight out of Mein Kampf, where Hitler declares the left to be absolutely evil

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:03:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "A Vast Leftist Conspiracy Against White People?" (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina
        Seriously, you actually said that everything wrong with the world is the result of a liberal conspiracy against white people plotted by the liberal elite and their multicultural henchmen?

        Well that particular conspiracy is what Nazism is all about, the liberal-conspiracy-to-kill-the-white-people.  Are you like literally a Nazi?

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:06:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "Really? School Lunches Threaten America?" (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Killer of Sacred Cows, eXtina

        A good one whenever someone say Michelle Obama talking about food will destroy the country:

        You know, when Germany and Italy were destroyed in WW2, it wasn't because of school lunches or giving kids vaccinations.  It was because both countries were taken over by right wing conspiracy nuts who kept the public panicked by one phony "crisis" and "leftist conspiracy" after another, until finally the rest of the world had to band together and eradicate them.

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 07:15:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  thanks nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

    by a2nite on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 05:33:15 PM PDT

  •  wait a second.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    I am 52 years old.  Just 20 years ago, I wouldn't have dreamed of openly gay people serving in the military. 30 years ago, I wouldn't have dreamed of having an African American President.

    I wouldn't have anticipated a national health care plan (albeit a weak, moderate Republican one).

    In many ways, WE ARE WINNING, at least the social war.

    "Obama won. Get over it."

    by onanyes on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 08:16:59 PM PDT

  •  The Oddest Primary Season Ever? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    This is the oddest primary season I can ever remember. But the article is right, the Republicans don't have to run faster than the bear, just faster than the Democrats. Whatever that means. This is an interesting recap I read of this surreal primary season http://www.zombielogicblog.blogspot.com/...

  •  i disagree with this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina
    The Democrats lost the House in 2010 because Republicans beat them with moral arguments ('freedom' and 'life) about Obamacare
    the republicans argued by spewing pure bullshit 24/7, literally beating people's brain into either submission or apathy.  i remember a poll on NPR last year about attitudes toward congress wherein a few people agreed or disagreed with what they did and the majority balanced simply stopped caring.
  •  The political system is designed..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    ....around a disinformation model. This model will dominate politics for as long as the traditional media continues to operate as though disinformation and facts are two equally valid viewpoints.

    The disinformation model is an integrated system of right wing think tanks (eg AEI), propaganda networks (eg Fox News) and government agencies that distribute disinformation to the media conglomerates. The media conglomerates have a vested interest in accepting disinformation at face value; because it represents low cost (free) programming/news content.

    The US cannot have a functioning democracy, until the disinformation model is superseded by a model that does not actively seek to prevent Americans from making informed decisions about public policy.

    The disinformation model is the reason why most Americans self-identify themselves as politically center-right, while their positions on individual issues (corporate oversight, health care, taxation, wealth distribution, theocracy, etc..) are actually center-left.

    While I don't hold Obama in high esteem, that doesn't mean I would say he's the Devil Incarnate and the lessor of evils. He is merely the lessee of evils.

    by xynz on Wed Mar 14, 2012 at 11:59:49 PM PDT

  •  thank you for diarying this (0+ / 0-)

    I had too much work to do it in a timely fashion, only just now found yours

    -7.75, -6.05 And these wars; they can't be won Does anyone know or care how they begun?-Matt Bellamy

    by nicolemm on Sun Mar 18, 2012 at 04:26:42 PM PDT

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