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View Diary: Reason, Emotion and Politics: An Interview with Drew Westen (88 comments)

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  •  A challenge for leadership (0+ / 0-)

    ... is always going to be how to win the support of people who are not as well informed and often not as smart (whatever that means) as the leaders.

    There needs to be a reduced, highly simplified version of whatever the message is, and it needs to be something that people can connect to emotionally. That way people who don't have much information, don't pay much attention, and don't have the greatest critical thinking skills can still form a strongly positive impression of who we are and what we want to do.

    This is a technique, if you will. As such, it can be cynically exploited, but that does not mean that all uses are cynical and exploitive. Like other tools, it has no intrinsic moral character, and can be used to good ends or bad, with greater or lesser skill, etc.

    Drew Westen and George Lakoff argue that if we allow the GOP the sole use of this tool, we are signing up for more of what we've seen for the last 30 years.

    A simplified, emotionally powerful message could otherwise be called mythic, archetypal, or poetic. These are deeply true and powerful-- but not overtly rational-- cultural and cognitive forms.

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