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View Diary: Universal Health Care - the positive MEME - let's start now! (93 comments)

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  •  It'll be a test. (4.00)
    The ones that are willing to put aside partisan hostilities to help get universal health case, those are the real Christians. I don't think you'll find too many of them amongst the "culture of life" folks, but maybe they'll prove me wrong.

    What I do see, though, is a group of people who have come to think being Christian is believing whatever the Republican Wurlitzer funnels to them via the pulpit, never mind if that is completely opposite to what they were told to believe yesterday. False gods, indeed...

    ...

    Okay, here's what you have to do. They've bought that "culture of life" phrase. You can't scrub those words out of their heads by scolding them out, or reasoning them away. What you have to do is shift the scope. Start using "Culture of Life" NOW to mean supporting universal health care. Right now. Today.

    No explanations. No long-winded justifications. Just blandly start using it as if everybody knows that's what it means.

    Language isn't solid, it's malleable. The result will be:

    1. the followers will be confused, and some of them will even listen to what you're saying, since you used the right magic words, and

    2. the leaders will be driven onto the defensive, trying to say, "No, no! That's NOT WHAT IT MEANS!" But once they're arguing definitions, they have already lost. Almost nobody has the patience to parse word definitions. Especially among those conditioned to respond to the "Culture of Life" keyword... if they could think critically, they wouldn't have been so vulnerable to manipulation in the first place. Plus, it's a really hard sell to convince people that saving lives with healthcare isn't a culture of life.

    Meanwhile, you don't argue back. You don't get drawn in. You just go on using "Culture of Life" to mean support for universal healthcare.

    This is what they did to you with "Liberal" and "politically correct". They proved it works. Now you do it back to them.

    And, by the way, you also have to talk a lot about babies. Infant mortality statistics are a disgrace in the US because so many people can't afford health care for their children. So... the culture of life = saving babies.

    Massacre is not a family value.

    by Canadian Reader on Thu Apr 14, 2005 at 07:47:47 PM PDT

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    •  It's Un-American (none)
      The right argues that the Constitution leaves all powers not expressly given to government, to the people & society. They're not wrong as I read the document.

      They take this document as fiat of the Living God, fixed for all time unless formally ammended by the near-impossible process it allows. So the American system defines the boundaries and allowable plays in the game; it's up to the players, not the referees or the paying fans, to ensure their success.

      Liberals take the Jesus position that the law is given in order to accomplish purposes greater than legalistic ones.

      We're morally right, for what it's worth.

      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 Thu Apr 14, 2005 at 08:06:35 PM PDT

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      •  Ummm... huh? (none)
        Did you intend to post this somewhere else? I don't quite see how it's a response to what I wrote.

        I was talking about co-opting the phrase "culture of life" to mean something a little more, you know... life-supporting. It seems to me you will get useful results from even a small effort in that direction.

        What does the Constitution have to do with... oh, are you saying they'll try to claim universal health care is against the Constitution because it's not mentioned there? Well, okay, but neither is the interstate highway system, or the FDA.

        It doesn't matter, though. I'm not talking about convincing those hard-core nut cases, except maybe a few around the edges. I'm talking about taking the phrase "culture of life" away from them before they hurt somebody with it. And especially, before they can use it to convince more normal folks they're not insane.

        You can do it. Easy. Just use the phrase, without stammering, every single time you talk about the need for universal health care.

        Massacre is not a family value.

        by Canadian Reader on Thu Apr 14, 2005 at 08:29:32 PM PDT

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