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  •  better products? (0+ / 0-)

    What will shift the window leftward is a comprehensive vision, narrative, and mythos about how much better things are when progressive policies are in effect.  

    That's what the left has been missing for decades.

    The 1960s counterculture got huge because it offered a comprehensive vision and plenty of good feelings to go along with it (largely pot and premarital sex).  

    The religious right got huge because it offered its own comprehensive vision of salvation and bliss in the hereafter, and righteousness in the here & now (which is also an emotional reinforcer).

    The plutocrats keep people in their thrall with visions of prosperity, the lottery mentality that anyone can become a millionaire.  

    And lotteries get huge the same way: by offering daydreams of instant wealth in exchange for paying the math tax.  

    No, we don't have to be polite to Goldman et. al.  I've been advocating various forms of protest aimed at basically shutting down the street grid around Wall Street: peacefully and effectively and in some cases undetectably until the deed is done.  We could shut down the street grid in Washington DC as well, and keep doing it until Congress deals with us.  

    But using that "stick" also requires holding out the "carrot," otherwise the whole thing just devolves back into bitterness which leads to cynicism and also tends to breed violence.  

    There is no substitute for a comprehensive positive vision.  Without that, the rest of it is a big waste of time.  

    "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

    by G2geek on Mon Sep 17, 2012 at 03:23:04 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I agree with that. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sloopydrew

      We do need to get people to understand how great progressive policy is to live with.  I think we should be blowing the roof off about Germany -- arguably the strongest country on the planet right now, and living large under the dreaded "socialism."

      I don't see, however, that having most of America get on board with that is necessarily going to push the Dems to the left.  I could be wrong.  But if they never hear how we feel about NDAA and military operations in our major cities, what's their motivation to do diddly squat?  The only reason we're getting what we're getting now is because of Occupy.

      And it's mind boggling, to me, that they didn't allow Occupy to Occupy the Fed in Minneapolis.  That right there should tell you who's in charge.

      I like your idea of shutting down the traffic grid.

      •  you missed the central point: (0+ / 0-)

        This: "But if they never hear how we feel about NDAA and military operations in our major cities, what's their motivation to do diddly squat?" demonstrates that you missed the point.

        "How WE FEEL" is IRRELEVANT.

        The goal of organizing isn't to have a good therapy session where you get to express your feelings all over the place.  The goal of organizing is to win votes, period, full stop, end of story.  

        And trying to get other people to share unpleasant feelings doesn't work.  It's what's called an "aversive stimulus."

        "Here, sit still while I rub some dog doo in your hair."  Who's going to volunteer for that?

        How'bout "Here, have an ice cream sundae!"   Yeah, you'll get plenty of volunteers for that.  

        Does Detroit get people to buy cars by shitting all over the imports?  

        And in politics:  negative campaigning suppresses voter turnout.  Why?  Because it's emotionally negative!  

        The thing that works, time and time again, is to put forward the coherent positive vision.  It works for advertising, it works for campaigns, it works for religion, etc. etc., it just plain WORKS, and it keeps on working.

        Use positive emotions, use themes that are uplifting, that attract people.  Describe life in progressive utopia, or at least in Germany and the Northern European social democracies.  Describe it in terms that evoke pleasant feelings, good feelings, happy feelings, awesome feelings, feelings that people want to have more of.  Because when people want more of those feelings, they vote for whoever has associated themselves with those feelings.

        Jimmy Carter was grim and serious.  Ronald Reagan was happy and optimistic.  

        GW Bush Senior was grim and serious.  Bill Clinton was happy and optimistic.  

        Al Gore was grim and serious.  GW Bush II was happy and optimistic.  

        McCain emphasized fear.  Obama emphasized hope.  

        See how that works?

        And yet, one of Clinton's recognized talents is the ability to take complex ideas and put them across in a way that people who are non-experts can understand.  So you don't have to dumb it down, you just have to say it clearly.   Obama's got that talent too.  Romney does not.  

        These items are measurable facts: measurable in market share for advertising, and measurable in numbers of votes for campaigns.  

        "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

        by G2geek on Mon Sep 17, 2012 at 08:30:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Let me rephrase (0+ / 0-)

          I didn't realize you were stuck on semantics.  

          "The goal of organizing isn't to have a good therapy session where you get to express your feelings all over the place."
          The goal of organizing is to have clear demands, and have them be met.  So if we do not insist that these intrusions on our civil rights are unacceptable, i.e., fight back, presto magico, we won't get more acceptable policies.
          The goal of organizing is to win votes, period, full stop, end of story.  
          Here's where it seems like you're not getting my point:  I'm not seeing the option of voting for what I want.  Lots of us aren't.  We get to vote for the lesser of the two evils ad nauseum.
          And trying to get other people to share unpleasant feelings doesn't work.  It's what's called an "aversive stimulus.
          I'm not interested in getting people to share negative feelings.  In this diary, I provided factual information -- which was not being shared by anyone else on this site to my knowledge -- that is relevant to American citizens.  A lot of people weren't interested in it, for the same reason they don't want to know about icky drone strikes or what really goes on in Guantanamo.

          A lot of us already get that what we want is irrelevant.  I don't think I need to convince people that our country is way the hell off to the right, and it sucks.

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