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View Diary: Democratic Strategist Says Christian Right is the Most Powerful Force in Politics (164 comments)

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  •  We do a lousy job of messaging. (10+ / 0-)

    We're all about facts, but Americans are all about morality.  We own that, but we aren't using words effectively that are long term and issue based.
    Don't we want the Social Security that we paid into?  Don't we want the same assurances for our children?
    We are disaster messaging when we are on the defensive.

    Remember, you can't have crazy without az.

    by Desert Rose on Tue Sep 13, 2011 at 08:40:24 PM PDT

    •  It isn't really the messaging (13+ / 0-)

      Progressives seem to forget history.

      This conservative movement was greatly motivated by the progressive successes of the sixties and the FDR era.

      There happened to be a confluence of interests.  The evangelicals wanted political power over society and the big business interests who weren't interested in religion wanted power as well.  Money plus organized volunteers equals winning elections and winning at policy making.

      We do a lousy job of recognizing that sustained and serious effort over time is what creates the direction that society takes.  

      We seem to prefer protesting the latest fucked up thing that the Republicans want to do.  We may get our wish.  

      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 Tue Sep 13, 2011 at 09:24:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  oh but it is! (10+ / 0-)

        Republicans' support from Big Business includes many people in the advertising industry, who are world-class brilliant at crafting messages and emotional narratives.  

        This is something we do not have.

        Or rather, we do, but from people who are "nobodies" and who aren't listened to.

        And what we also do is "explain too much."  We have to stop explaining and start emoting.  Emotion leads and reason follows.  Emotional narratives get attention.  Craft the emotional messages skillfully and they win.  

        Asking questions = playing offense.  Answering questions = playing defense.  Offense wins.

        This stuff isn't difficult, it just takes a paradigm switch to understand it well enough to apply it successfully.  

        •  Astroturf e-mail on Rec List, perfect example (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          G2geek, Dirtandiron

          It pushes emotional buttons --- hey, who here doesn't think Alan Simpson is a miserable SOB? --- and slips in a lot of right-wing memes (i.e. The "gummint" took our Social Security money and gave it to a bunch of shiftless, no account losers to buy their votes) that people don't even see on a conscious level, because they're already focused on agreeing with the emotional sentiment.

          •  Bingo! and it happens here a lot. (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            terrypinder, sfgb, Dirtandiron, aisling

            For example try running the same diary two weeks in a row at the same time each day.  

            The first time, run it with a title that doesn't have any emotion words in it, e.g. "Hidden costs of health care impasse," and illustrated with graphs & charts.

            The second time run it with a title that's dripping with emotion words, e.g. "Crying a river over the uninsured," and illustrated with photos of people in emotional distress.

            The second one will make the Rec list.  

            This isn't "good" or "bad," it's just the way human minds work.  And the sooner we start applying all of the lessons of cognitive science and marketing psychology to our campaigns, the better.

            Obama is a natural at being able to convey feelings, which is rare in someone with his level of smarts.  That's why a lot of people went into "my savior!" mode in 2008 and then went into "you betrayed us!" mode a year later.   They let their emotions run wild with unrealistic expectations, and when reality didn't match up, rather than just being ticked off about the compromises, or pissed at the Republicans for holding Obama hostage, they went right over the handlebars: from love to hate.  

            And the lesson there is, we need to have greater awareness of our own emotional states so we don't go for a roller coaster ride or get our buttons pushed or whatever, but just keep steadily on the task of electing more and better Democrats and pushing our agenda forward.

      •  It's all about the messaging. It's ironic that (0+ / 0-)

        you wrote out a bunch of facts to try to counteract that claim, as well.

        Justified anger does not grant you unrestricted license.

        by GoGoGoEverton on Wed Sep 14, 2011 at 05:14:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Right you are, but it's my opinion that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Dems candidates in general and on principle would have a hard time transitioning into the rhetoric of the religious right.

      I'd like to believe that the Democratic Party still stands for separation of church and state and is willing to fight for a woman's choice and for the repeal of laws which discriminate against Americans, i.e., DADT and DOMA.


      May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Wed Sep 14, 2011 at 04:48:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We shouldn't even address their messages. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        msmacgyver, Clarknt67, Dirtandiron

        That reinforces their message to the listener.  We frame it our way. (I've been reading a lot of George Lakoff on framing and messaging.)

        Remember, you can't have crazy without az.

        by Desert Rose on Wed Sep 14, 2011 at 05:04:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree with you and made the (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sfgb, Dirtandiron, Desert Rose

          comment that The Big Two compel the religious right and distract the left.

          For anyone who has had a discussion about a sub-set, school prayer, it quickly becomes apparent that these issues are the ones which the religious right's foot soldiers have learned by rote and there is simply no debating with robotic zeal.

          May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

          by msmacgyver on Wed Sep 14, 2011 at 06:13:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I used to cringe every time John Kerry (0+ / 0-)

      got asked a question, because I knew the man would try his best to answer it logically and rationally.

      At length.

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