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[ Just like talking about the weather,
everyone talks about Re-Framing the Debate,
But hardly anyone does anything about it!

I think that this is largely to due lack of understanding
about what 'Framing the Debate' really means ...

Well, here are some of the key principles of 'Framing the Debate',
as explained by George Lakoff, Berkeley professor, a cognitive linguist: ]

-------  Dallas/Fort Worth

Democrats realizing the war that wins votes is one of words

May 20, 2007

AUSTIN – It's an article of faith among many Democrats
that the party has a language problem.

Republicans do a better job pressing their agenda
in crisp, winnable sound bites.

They say "death tax" and accuse opponents of being
"weak on terror" and "not supporting the troops."

So when Democrats gathered last week amid
swelling hopes of winning back the White House in 2008,
the guest of honor was George Lakoff, language wizard.

"A very interesting thing happened last week,"
Mr. Lakoff announced. "John Edwards actually
got up in public, on national TV,

and said, 'Don't use "war on terror." It's a bad metaphor.' "

Mr. Lakoff is a Berkeley professor,
a cognitive linguist, and, lately,
adviser to the stars in the Democratic Party
on how to talk to voters in ways that win elections.

"Barack Obama has a very interesting strategy,
and it's working like crazy," he said.
"He's a progressive and he never uses the word.
He talks about American values.

Democrats don't need to move right, he instructed.
They just need to talk in a different way to reach conservatives.

"They love the land as much as any environmentalist,
but they never call themselves an environmentalist," he said.

"Framing" is more than words, it's context, he said.
Seizing the life issue, for example.

Health care, clean air, decent housing,
Social Security "are life issues," he said.

"These are not unrelated.
They form umbrellas of issues
and what you want to do is
go to the public with this umbrella in favor of life."

Mr. Lakoff believes Democrats missed a big opportunity
four years ago when President Bush declared
"mission accomplished" on the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln.

"At that moment, he ceased becoming a war president
and became an occupation president,"
he said.
"But nobody said it."

Increasing troops in Iraq is not a "surge"
but an "escalation."

Describe the war as a "betrayal of trust."

And it even extends to what you call
the technique itself. Practitioners cringe at the term "spin."

"Framing is not spin," said longtime Texas political
operative Glenn Smith. "It simply refers to
the use of language that makes sense to voters
because it speaks to their values.
It is an antidote to spin."


He turned to Hillary Rodham Clinton,
the party's frontrunner for president.
One narrative is that she's calculating,
another that she's accomplished.

It all depends on who does the framing.

UC Berkeley News

27 October 2003

Framing the issues: UC Berkeley professor
George Lakoff tells how conservatives use language to dominate politics

By Bonnie Azab Powell, NewsCenter |

Language always comes with what is called "framing."
Every word is defined relative to a conceptual framework.

If you then add the word "voter" in front of "revolt,"
you get a metaphorical meaning saying that
the voters are the oppressed people,
the governor is the oppressive ruler,
that they have ousted him and
this is a good thing and all things are good now.

All of that comes up when you see a headline
like "voter revolt" — something that most people
read and never notice.

Why do conservatives appear to be so much better at framing?

Because they've put billions of dollars into it.
Over the last 30 years their think tanks
have made a heavy investment in ideas and in language.

...They set up the Heritage Foundation in 1973,
and the Manhattan Institute after that.

And now, as the New York Times Magazine quoted Paul Weyrich,
who started the Heritage Foundation, they have
1,500 conservative radio talk show hosts.
They have a huge, very good operation,
and they understand their own moral system.

The phrase "Tax relief" began coming out of the White House
starting on the very day of Bush's inauguration.
It got picked up by the newspapers
as if it were a neutral term, which it is not.

... So, add "tax" to "relief" and you get a metaphor
that taxation is an affliction,
and anybody against relieving this affliction
is a villain.

So what should they be calling it?

It's not just about what you call it,
if it's the same "it."

There's actually a whole other way
to think about it.

Taxes are what you pay to be an American,
to live in a civilized society
that is democratic and offers opportunity,
and where there's an infrastructure
that has been paid for by previous taxpayers.

Taxes are your dues — you pay your dues to be an American.

So taxes could be framed as an issue of patriotism.

It is an issue of patriotism!
Are you paying your dues, or
are you trying to get something for free
at the expense of your country?

Every Democratic senator and all of their aides
and every candidate would have to learn how to talk
about it that way. There would have to be a manual.

Republicans have one. They have a guy named Frank Luntz,
who puts out a 500-page manual every year
that goes issue by issue on what
the logic of the position is from the Republican side,
what the other guys' logic is, how to attack it,
and what language to use.

Do any of the Democratic Presidential candidates
grasp the importance of framing?

None. They don't get it at all.
But they're in a funny position.
The framing changes that have to be made
are long-term changes. The conservatives
understood this in 1973. By 1980 they had
a candidate, Ronald Reagan, who could take
all this stuff and run with it.

[... as of October 2003, when Lakoff said this:]

The progressives don't have a candidate now
who understands these things and
can talk about them. And in order
for a candidate to be able to talk about them,
the ideas have to be out there.

You have to be able to reference them in a sound bite.

People vote their identity,
they don't just vote on the issues,
and Democrats don't understand that.
Look at Schwarzenegger, who says nothing
about the issues. The Democrats ask,
How could anyone vote for this guy?
They did because he put forth an identity.
Voters knew who he is.

So to summarize, here are some of the Key Points of 'Framing the Debate'

1) Framing is more than words, it's context.

2) Framing is not spin,

    it's using language that makes sense to voters --  
    because it speaks to their values.

3) Framing is an antidote to spin.

4) Framing is about putting words in new contexts:

     For example:
     when you add "tax" to "relief" and you get a metaphor
     that implies 'taxation is an affliction'

5) But you can change the context of a media Frame,
simply by 'looking at it from the other way'

     For example:
     "Paying taxes" can be re-framed as a "patriotic duty" of every American,
     instead of an "affliction to be avoided",
     from which we need "relief"

6) People vote for that with which they identify,
     they don't just vote on the issues.

     What Voters want to know about Candidates,
     is "Who they are?",
     NOT just "what they think about the issues."

So let's apply a few of these concepts.
let's see how easy it is to Re-Frame
some of the Media's shop-worn metaphors:


This Global War on Terror, has resulted in More Terrorists, NOT Less.

On holding prisoners as 'suspected enemy combatants':

When we hold suspected prisoners, for years without filing charges,
without allowing them access to lawyers, or to their families --
How is that different from a 3rd world nation, who does the same thing,
and we call those prisoners 'The Disappeared' ?

On 'fair play' and respect for the military:

When the 'home team' moves 'the Goalposts' in the middle of a game,
most would call that cheating, and 'out of bounds' --
But when the Pentagon does it time and time again
to the 'tours of duty'
of so many Brave soldiers,
Why do we still call that 'supporting the troops' ?

On human rights:

When government officials constantly put the values of 'corporate rights'
over and above the value of 'human rights' of the citizens they supposedly represent, there is something terribly wrong with the "track this country is on"

So there's a few New Frames!

I'm sure with all the smart, compassionate people,
who participate at Daily KOS, there a few more
New Media Frames, just waiting to be created.

SO have at it, let's start Re-framing those Debatable 'talking points'
that the MSM is SO fond of:

Originally posted to Digging up those Facts ... for over 8 years. on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 05:55 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (12+ / 0-)

    New Frames, are much more important than new Tips...

    So Frame away!

    Good Night and Good Luck ...

    •  Jamess, need your assistance (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      abbeysbooks, Akonitum, jamess

      I have a similar diary to this tomorrow in the works that is much longer but incorporates hundreds of sound bites we can use.  I'd like your help in looking them over and collaborating on our lists to see what we have in common and we each of us is missing.

    •  "Personally I think People are more important (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Johnny Rapture, jamess

      than Profit."

      This should preface every answer a Democrat gives.

      We need to pit the Corporate Agenda vs the Human Agenda to reform a host of issues.

      What is standing in the way of a Human Agenda? The Corporate Agenda, that's what.

      Pick an issue.

      Find the reason that issue is not being touched, or who opposes a resolution that serves the American people, and you will find it is a corporation, or a group of Corporations that are stimying reform.

      In a Human Agenda, People are more important than Profit.

      In the Corporate Agenda, Profit is more important than People.

      When's the last time a major piece of legislation was passed that actually benefitted People. Seriously.

      Everybody knows it.

      All we have to do is draw the clear distinction between the two futures available to us.

      Do we continue to be forced into a Corporate Agenda - Do we continue to hurtle into Global Warming, lack of Democracy, shortages and extortion for vital human services without any strategy but "Grow or Die"?

      Or do we stand up and pursue a Human Agenda where People are more important than Profit?

      Personally I think people are more important than profit.

      Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

      by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 07:50:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let's revive a great line (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        k9disc said:

        "People are more important than Profit."

        Yes! This reminds me of Bill Clinton's 1992 title of his economic plan which became his main campaign line. It says what "k9disc" is saying above but doesn't put "profit" in negative light although profit (and other things) implied as being secondary to "people." There's no argument from any direction. I've always thought was the best campaign line I'd ever heard and wish Dems would revive it:

        "Putting People First."

  •  You make some exellent points (3+ / 0-)

    We need to be on our toes about the best way to combat talking points. The non-political junkie, lol, is influenced by repetitive sound bites and imagery.

    "I had planned to buy that book The Power of Positive Thinking, then I realized, what good could that do?" author unknown

    by OrdinaryGal on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 06:03:04 PM PDT

    •  thanks gal, it is very sad but true (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Johnny Rapture

      SO many americans, ONLY Hear the current Media Framing
      and not much else.

      If we play that old word association game,
      "say the first word, that pops in your mind"

      with the average Media Consumer responding here:

      "Republican"  ---- "Strong on Defense"
      "Democrats"  --- "Weak on Terror"

      "Health Care" --- "A hopeless Bureaucracy"
      "Big Business" --- "Jobs, Prosperity"

      "Hillary" --- "Driven, Smart"
      "Obama" --- "Inspiring, Dynamic"
      "Edwards" --- "Nice Hair, Big House, ..."

      These common impressions are all the result
      of the relentless Media Framing of the Issues (ie the Spin)
      "that they have deemed important"

      I want to know WHO put the Media in charge of
      Framing the Debate?

      WHO appointed them arbiters of "What's Important, and What's Not?"

      •  Well.. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Johnny Rapture, jamess

        I think that Democrats are largely responsible for the 'Weak on Terror' meme.

        I mean they seem unwilling to change the frame from 'War' to 'Crime'. They seem unable to articulate 'Defense' without mentioning the military and use of force.

        John Edwards said as much, which is why he gets the Do-of-the-Week treatment. He's a threat to the Corporate Agenda.

        And as for who appointed them arbiters of 'What's important and what's not', it's their customers - Corporate Advertisers.

        Almost by definition, the Corporate Media put forth a blatantly Corporate Agenda, and the fact that nobody in the Democratic party, the party of the people, the party that uses Government to benefit People, refuse to articulate that fact.

        The media is not informative, it's not responsible, it's not truthful. It's marketing and advertising.

        We're simply the product the media sells to their customers, the corporate advertisers. Who gives a shit about your product's feelings? It's the customers that are important.

        Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

        by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:00:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I think this is a three-step (3+ / 0-)


    1. Framing the Debate.
    1. Enforcing Message Discipline.
    1. Controlling a Noise Machine.

    Number one is critical, of course, but without 2 and 3, doesn't go very far.

    Let there be sharks - TracieLynn

    by GussieFN on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 06:07:30 PM PDT

    •  good points Gussie (0+ / 0-)

      But, How do we "Enforce Message Discipline"?

      (are you talking about a Democratic version
      of Today's Talking Points?

      The only way I know to control the Noise Machine

      is to turn it off -- but then I never know what
      Noise my Neighbors are still hearing.

      Another way I suppose is to make More important Noise,
      on the MSM, whenever the opportunity arises

      John Edwards, certainly made "an Unexpected Loud Noise" in the last debate:

      When he called GWOT only a Slogan, saying it's a bad metaphor, used to justify everything.

      That Echo is still bouncing around the sound chamber
      called the Media, even now.

      •  I'm not sure. (0+ / 0-)

        I suppose that enforcement is the end-product of a very long process. For the right, it's also the product of a very hierarchical system, through which the flow of money and the flow of message are both pretty tightly controlled.

        And of course discipline is worthless without a megaphone.

        So we need the frame. We need to ensure that all 'our' talking heads understand and use not only good frames, but the same good frames (my #2). And we need to ensure that our talking heads actually talk, in front of cameras, all the friggin' time (my #3).

        You know how Jon Stewart often shows a dozen 'journalists' and pundits and whatever using exactly the same language? It's ridiculous, but effective. You never seen that on our side--party because we haven't put the time and money into building the infrastructure, and partly because we're not naturally authoritarian. If we were, we'd be on the right.

        So ... I don't know. I really appreciate your diary, you put this together v. well. But I've also been wondering how each of these parts work, and if how much good any of 'em can do in isolation.

        Let there be sharks - TracieLynn

        by GussieFN on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 06:53:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  thanks for the reply (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          it is indeed a conundrum, how you get all progressives
          "on the same page" when were all singing different "song lyrics"

          I think knowing about the Framing problem is the first important step,
          you can't adequately reply, if you don't even realized
          'you've been framed'

          Yes I've seen Jon Stewart (and Keith O.) clips that show
          the silliness of just repeating the same "sound bites" over and over,
          and those clips, always make me realize how
          trivial and insincere, this kind of right-wing parroting really is!

          Yet, if you don't know your listening to a squawking Parrot,
          you are quite likely to just believe it.

          I would hope that Dems, don't buy into the Parrot school of debating.

          Perhaps, we just need a few larger "big picture" Frames,
          that defines the parts of the Democratic Platform, in "common sense" terms?

          Thom Hartmann often paints such a Frame, that goes something like this:

          Republicans believe that people are basically 'evil'
          and so need to be 'constrained' by Govt.

          While Democrats believe that people are basically 'good'
          and so need to be 'encouraged' and 'supported' by Govt.

          Thom goes on to make an additional point in this context:

          Since Corporations are 'basically amoral' --
          ie. motivated by profits, and NOT ethics ...

          Democrats believe that people are superior to Corporations,
          and ought to trump Corporate interests.

          While Republicans believe that people are inferior to Corporations,
          (since corps are non-moral, and people are evil)

          and that people ought to take a backseat to the interests of the Corporations,
          which have "purer" motivations than "selfish, greedy, people"

          Kind of trivial, I know, but I often find it a very useful "Big Picture" Frame,
          that gives me a very useful context, on so many complex issues.

          •  I'm not sure that (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            endless repetition is necessarily trivial and insincere. It's just that the Republicans have mastered this, and they are trivial and insincere. But we can use this same power for good ...

            I wonder how this notion of people as basically good plays with religious Christians. Never really thought of this before, but if we do think this (and I believe we do), doesn't it fly in the face of Original Sin? (My Christian theology is a bit shaky ...)

            Let there be sharks - TracieLynn

            by GussieFN on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 07:51:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think we really need message discipline (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          as much as the Right does.

          See, the Right lies:
          Free Trade Cheap Labor is Good For Americans.
          War is Peace.
          Less Taxes (for the Rich and Corporate) will make America Better.
          Global Warming is a hoax.
          CAFTA standards will cost too much.
          Free Markets=Democracy.
          Shopping for Healthcare is good for America.
          Government is not as efficient as Private Sector.

          Over and over, lies!

          You can speak much more freely, or have a more diverse message, meaning that just the overarching concepts need to be maintained, as opposed to the rigid structure of message from the Right.

          I hope this is making sense.

          Let's take a favorite of mine:

          Human Agenda -

          Personally I think that people are more important than profit...

          That's why I believe that access to Medicine should be guaranteed for All Americans. Asking Americans to shop for healthcare is extortion. I mean, what would you pay to save your child?

          That's why I believe that we must get a handle on this Global Warming situation. We will need to eat in the future, won't we? What's more important having food for future Americans or driving a Hummer?

          That's why I believe that Corporate Sponsored Public Policy has got to stop. This is a Democracy of, by and for the people. When's the last time you met with your congressman?

          and on and on...

          Once we all get on board with a Human Agenda, we should be able to say pretty much what we want and still make the point.

          If it isn't the Human Agenda, it could be something else, the Common Good, for instance.

          I think the greatest problem is going to be getting to the root of the problem, which is Corporate Sponsored Public Policy. That is the root of the rot, and the framing that will resonate with people and foster change will have to take on that elephant sitting in the middle of the room.

          Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

          by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:20:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I agree, but I have to be honest. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sc kitty, Johnny Rapture, jamess

    "Framing is an antidote to spin" is, in itself, actually an excellent example of Lakoffian framing. But that's OK.  We have to do this anyway.

    About taxes as patriotic duty.  Never gonna fly.  Investment.  That is the meme for taxes.  Americans investing in health care, investing in renewable energy for independence from foreign oil, etc.

    That's my contribution to the spin machine -- er, I mean frame shop -- for tonight.

    •  I like you framing on Investment (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mike101, Johnny Rapture

      Invest in the Future,
      after all it's your future too!


      "Framing is an antidote to spin" is, in itself, actually an excellent example of Lakoffian framing.

      the way I read his point, was that:

      Framing was (or should be) MORE Significant that Spin

      my intepretation:

      Spin plays with words, and is used to win arguments,

      Framing plays with emotions and values,
      and is intended to win Heart and Minds.

      •  That is spin... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Spin plays with words, and is used to win arguments,

        Framing plays with emotions and values,
        and is intended to win Heart and Minds.

        That is just a different way of saying the same thing...

        Framing goes deeper...

        Spin plays with words, and is used to win arguments.

        Framing confines the argument.

        Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

        by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:30:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  you can win the battle and still lose the war (0+ / 0-)

          that's where I was going with the distinction

          Spin Rooms are the battles
          who you vote for and who ultimately wins is the War.

          After debates, so many "talking heads"
          try to tell you what you just saw and heard.
          They usually use simple arguments, long on spin,
          and short on substance.

          Where as, Framing is more the Media Context
          behind the News Stories, they show on the News everynite.
          It's the "Editorial Policies" that Frames the Debate and a the Issues,
          that decides what's important, and whats not.

          The Framing even tells you how to interpret the News:
          Example, you should belieeve that "Iraq is relatively safe"
          (from the Photo-shop editing of McCain's trip there)

          The Frame will never tell you it's an outright civil wars there,
          just a few steps above chaos.

          Another Example:

          Some Media Framers decided which questions to ask in the Debates, like:

          Should English be the Official Language?
          Has the War on Terror made us safer?

          These Framed questions, carried there own implied "value context",
          established from all the previous stories,

          and that "context" gives all the Talking Heads, something they can
          "easily Spin" after the debate, in order to tweak and steer,
          the emotions of all the easily led viewers.

          •  Yes so you step out of those frames... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Has the War on Terror made us safer?

            My understanding of the situation is that we overthrew a vicious dictator 4 years ago and now our military and our national treasure are being wasted trying to make peace happen with bombs.

            Are our ports safer?

            Is our food supply safer?

            How about our border?

            How about our energy supply?

            Is your job safer?

            It's almost as if we broke the bank on offense and dropped the ball when it comes to defending our country.

            Terrorism's scary and it's real and we need to do more work to protect our people.

            Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

            by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:04:10 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  more... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Should English be the Official Language?

              Yes it should, but is that really an important question at this point in time?

              My guess is that this question is really about immigration and Mexican people. Mexican people work hard and are, right now, busy being exploited and taken advantage of here in the United States.

              You want a solution to Immigration? Hold employers responsible and do our best to increase wages in Mexico to a point where it isn't worth it to be exploited here for a few bucks an hour and send money home to their families.

              That shouldn't be too hard.

              The fact that corporations don't want to pay Americans a fair and living wage is no excuse to employ undocumented workers.

              Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

              by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:16:13 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Well said, Once again (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              once again you have gotten right to point
              of the issue

              NO, I don't feel any safer, here at home.

              I'm sure many feel the same.

              Why is it so few are asking the very important
              and direct questions, you have just framed?

              Thanks for being so concise!

              I wish the MSM, were so civic-minded

              •  Let's put the reality hat back on... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                Corporations don't want to hear about that.

                I think that's why it's not said, or allowed to be said.

                As soon as it's said, you're ridiculed for your personal hygiene or your lifestyle. The hit starts as soon as you do anything that might hurt Corporate Profits.

                It will take courage to change frames radically in the way that needs to happen to save this country.

                I was talking to a real live Conservative today, and it was awesome.

                Dropped some of the frames on him and we agreed on a lot. Asked questions about what he thought then tied his values into my issues. It was very cool.

                The only problem is my message is anti-corporate in nature, and you'll be hard pressed to get it into play from the Corporate Media.

                Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

                by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:38:57 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  kind of ironic isnt it? (0+ / 0-)

                  having to "persuading corporations to value human rights over their own corporate interests"!

                  If only "Corporations WERE truly Persons"
                  as the Supreme Court ruled over a century ago

                  If so, Coprs, might feel guilt, or a sense of civic duty
                  and start standing up for all us other persons,
                  just looking for a sign of sanity again in this crazy world, again

                  Thanks for the lively discussion tonite k9disc,
                  I've really enjoyed it.

                  you've made a lot of very important NEW Frames here,
                  which was the original goal

                  many thx

                  catch you later

                  james s.

              •  To take it a little further... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                Are our ports safer?

                Is our food supply safer?

                How about our border?

                How about our energy supply?

                Is your job safer?

                You want a solution to Immigration? Hold employers responsible and do our best to increase wages in Mexico to a point where it isn't worth it to be exploited here for a few bucks an hour and send money home to their families.

                That shouldn't be too hard.

                The fact that corporations don't want to pay Americans a fair and living wage is no excuse to employ undocumented workers.

                Each one of these things hurts corporate profits.

                Every single that the Democratic base, and most of America wants hurts corporate profits. The Corporate Agenda is in full effect, they write the laws, they regulate them, they have oodles of money for lawyers, and they inform the population. It's a slam dunk.

                Human beings are just Human Resources to be Exploited.

                Until the Democratic Party and decent human beings in power realize that nothing will change.

                Sad but true.

                Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

                by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:44:02 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Taxes as an investment is a loser... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The reason why is that it is about money.

      And "Who can invest your money better than you can?"

      "Personally I feel that MY money should be controlled by me and not some Government bean counter."

      "Nobody takes my money."

      It's not a frame change at all. It's the same damn frame. Same arguments. Same metaphor.

      A better one is Taxes are dues.

      These dues pay for the best damn country in human history!

      Taxes are roads that ensure we can travel freely.

      Taxes are schools that ensure Americans are well educated.

      Taxes are Parks that ensure our children have a place to play.

      Taxes protect us from exploitation and fraud.

      We, the American people, are responsible for America, and responsible Americans pay taxes.

      Hit me with some Rightwing nutjobisms on that...

      Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

      by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:26:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  jamesss your framing logic is absolutely lucid (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    abbeysbooks, jamess

    and irrefutable..How about lets framing their Wanted Poster too as war criminals and crimes against humanity or collateral damed goods..Might also want to consder the following and this is something I am sure that Senator Arlan onebullet spektor would appreciate..

    United States - Citizens Arrest
    A citizen's arrest is an arrest performed by a person acting as a civilian, as opposed to a sworn law enforcement officer. In common law jurisdictions, the practice dates back to medieval England and the English common law, when sheriffs encouraged ordinary citizens to help apprehend law breakers. All states other than North Carolina permit citizen arrests if a felony crime is witnessed by the citizen carrying out the arrest, or when a citizen is asked to help apprehend a suspect by the police. The application of state laws varies widely with respect to misdemeanor crimes, breaches of the peace, and felonies not witnessed by the arresting party. Note particularly that American citizens do not have the authorities or the legal protections of the police, and are strictly liable before both the civil law and criminal law for any violation of the rights of another.

    I'm willing to take my chances..! Hands up boys and you too condi and put your shoes on..Step away from the White House..Go ahead chaney, just try it..Quit crying george, we didnt even hood you yet..Yha, yha will let you call Barbara and Laura..Sooo sue me, I can dream cant I...

    "Better a little late, than a little never"..Oscar Madison

    by Johnny Rapture on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 06:24:17 PM PDT

    •  Johnny, I was wondering where you were going (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Johnny Rapture

      Johnny, I was wondering where you were going with this
      citizen arrest stuff ...

      Man! that's TOO Funny!

      If ONLY!

      I believe in karma as a life principle,
      so someday, they'll get their 'just  rewards' ...

      assuming there is any justice at all, in the universe,

      And if not, well ... Go Conyers!,  Go Leahy!
      Speak up for us, WE THE PEOPLE, Please!

      •  Thanks jamesss, a real compliment coming from (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        you ! Yes, we are viewing the best minds of our generation being dumbed down and discouraged by the hate, diviseveness and bad, bad karma..! And some of the Dharma too..I am a big fan of karmacorn an I pop a bag every night..I bought it at the Beat Museum in Frisco..Right next to the huge portrait of Jack and Neal..Where is my rucksack..

        "Better a little late, than a little never"..Oscar Madison

        by Johnny Rapture on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 06:54:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  If ONLY? (0+ / 0-)

        You can do this. In a slightly different way of course. See my legal diaries on Zimmerman's seminar that I took. Got trashed a lot by lawyer types here.

        Anyone who has been tortured, remains tortured. Primo Levi The Drowned and the Saved

        by abbeysbooks on Mon Jun 18, 2007 at 09:17:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Straight out of Zimmerman's legal (0+ / 0-)

      seminar. Check my legal diaries on this stuff.  You are so right that even you do not know how right you are. There is a way to do this.

      Anyone who has been tortured, remains tortured. Primo Levi The Drowned and the Saved

      by abbeysbooks on Mon Jun 18, 2007 at 02:38:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  When my husband and I talk about (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GussieFN, k9disc, jamess

    moving to Wisconsin, the question, "Have you seen our taxes?" always comes up.  My response?  "Taxes buy services.  Have you seen the services where I live?"  Makes people think.

    •  Taxes make the country go (0+ / 0-)

      Taxes make the country go round ...

      without them, we'd all live in "one sorry state"!

      Tenn Wisc Dem, thanks for you comments,
      you've already been out there "re-framing the debate"

      Believe me, we need it. Right-wing radio, and Corporate Media,
      have been out there, defining their own frames, for years.

      And most of the time those Frames go unchallenged,
      by the ever so busy democrats, trying to save the country.

  •  How about Rebuild America or Rebuild Iraq? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Johnny Rapture, jamess

    as a sound bite to end this war. I proposed this sound bite to friends and even my Congressman and received mixed reviews. Some people thought it to be too divisive. However, as you point out campaign sound bites hve to be worded in very simplistic terms in order to appeal to the masses. This is an area where the Dems have failed. Take John Kerry for example, during his run for President.  He was horrible at framing. His speeches were long, boring and snobbish.  Hiring elitist consultants who attempt to impress  their bosses with their extensive vocabularies have doomed the Dems because they lack street-smarts so to speak. I have yet to see an organized attempt by any Dem group to distribute a "simple list" of talking points/sound bites to members of their party. A few examples:

    1. Rebuild America or Rebuild Iraq (This soundbite can be used to end the war, to accelerate Katrina victims funding as well many other infrastructure projects)
    1. Corporate Rights or Human Rights
    1. Corporate Welfare or Human Welfare
    1. Culture of Corruption (The Dems should continue to pound away daily at this very effective description of the Republican Party till 2008)
    1. Healthcare is a right not a Luxury.

    These examples may seem simplistic but they can connect with the American people. Just a thought.  Thanks for your inspiring diary.

    •  PolySci, you make some very thought-provoking (0+ / 0-)

      PolySci, you make some very thought-provoking points thanks so much.

      I especially like your observations about Kerry,
      I agree, he was terrible at framing,
      and Kerry certainly did sound like an elitist most of the time ...

      And well, we all know how well that turned out, lol.

      It just goes to show that "connecting with people"
      is just as important, maybe more important
      than just "communicating with people"

      "street cred" may get more respect than "college creds"

      Regarding your simple list" of talking points/sound bites --

      I like it! very direct and to the point.

      I hope the Democratic Party is thinking along these lines, too

      It may be time to start, sending the Party Chairman a few emails?
      (that would be Howard Dean, seems like he might be open to a few suggestions,
      lets hope so!)

  •  Just a thought (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If you read Al Gore’s book you could look at it as a massive framing job.

    Maybe he is trying to frame the debate before entering the race.

    His framing is that Republicans are violating the constitution. They are traitors to a free democracy and unpatriotic. The founding fathers were the true patriots and would be disgusted and revolted by what people are doing in the name of patriotism. etc etc

    The book Assault on Reason give a well documented and complete picture.

    •  yes, Gore is redefining the Frame big time (0+ / 0-)

      I've been reading his new book "Assault on Reason"

      and he explores the Media control of the Message
      quite thoroughly

      bill, thanks for suggesting the book!

      it is a good read.

  •  Framing the Debate (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    k9disc, jamess

    is also a book written by a fellow kossack to help everyone get started on this very topic.

    And it even has an introduction by Lakoff.

    Buy a copy, drive the debate:

    Framing the Debate

    by Jeffrey Feldman

    (and thanks for the great diary!)

    ***Buy my book, support progressive writing! Framing the Debate, in stores now...

    by Jeffrey Feldman on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 07:46:11 PM PDT

    •  Thanks Jeffery, the Book looks intriguing (0+ / 0-)

      I will definitively put it on my reading list,

      I sure modern progressives could learn a lot from prior progressive presidents.

      Mr. Feldman,

      do you have any immediate suggestions,
      regarding the issues being raised tonite:

      how to get progressive Democrats all "on the same page"
      with regards to a "common frame"

      and is Framing really more a "speech technique"
      akin to repetition,
      or is it more a "debating technique" related
      to redefining the Question, and the context of the issue at hand?

      thanks for any thoughts you may have on these matters

      and thanks for you feedback on the diary!

      •  not everyone has to be on the same page (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        k9disc, jamess

        because a frame defines the universe of the debate.  Agreement and disagreement are both mechanisms for holding the frame in place. Disagreement is a problem at the level of issues and policies, but not at the level of framing.

        Framing is a way of defining the terrain of the debate--it is the next order of communication beyond habitual speech interaction (e.g., akin to the relationship of theory to literature).  

        I think the best way to move forward right now is to constantly question the keywords that we encounter in the flow of political speech.  In other words, engaging and speaking back to the media--it is the one technique that consistently undermines Republican framing techniques.

        And the rest of the work is long term building.  We will get there.

        ***Buy my book, support progressive writing! Framing the Debate, in stores now...

        by Jeffrey Feldman on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:43:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  thanks for your insights -- very helpful (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          If framing is "defining the terrain"
          was it valid for Edwards to take on the "are safer question"

          and attack the "whole premise" of the question --
          that the "war on terror" is a slogan and an excuse --
          and not an effective strategy against terrorists


          It was like he jumped from the safe terrain of D.C.
          and teleported instantly to the terrain of Geneva, Switzerland!

          Although his points were arguably valid,
          the "radically shifting of Frames" that he made,
          was obviously very jarring. And perhaps indeed threatening to the commonly accepted GOP Frame:
          that GWOT (in Iraq) is necessary, effective, and even patriotic.

          This is one way to shake up the debate,
          and change the national discourse,
          if you can survive all the flack,
          such a "subject change" will inevitably bring.

          Frankly, though I agree with Edwards, I'm not sure
          it was the right way to change the Frame?

          Jeffery Feldman, I really like the points,
          you make about "constantly questioning the keywords"

          it reminds, me of questioning the use of "weasel words"
          used to disguise the truthfulness, of some many platitude and assertions,
          by those in authority.

          Anyone remember George Orwell's "Animal House" ?

          or Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" ?

          Questioning the accepted wisdom and norms,
          would have done those society's a world of good.

          Thanks again for you thoughtful comments here!

          •  I believe that answer did successfully (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            reframe the concept.

            I think that was a watershed moment in modern day politics.

            I wish that Hillary and Obama are so not interested in sticking to the War Frame.

            If Democrats pulled that out as the chosen frame, which is far closer to reality than the frame of "Terror War Makes us Safer" BS that Hillary and Obama have embraced, they'd own National Security.

            Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

            by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:33:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  It's not just reading the book (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's having the frames and having them identified with a person running for office, before the other side sets up their "lies, half truths and distortions" frames. The book has already been attack by the right wing nuts, but it has not stuck. (which I believe is in part because he isn’t "running" yet.)

    Go to you tube and listen to some of his speeches. He is saying the same thing over and over until it is heard and sinks in.

    George Lakoff has a couple of good books out too, that were written around the 2004 election.

  •  I've always thought of framing and spin (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    as shorthand for how to talk to people with no common sense, no imagination, and no life experience.  You and your references apparently agree.

    Never trade luck for skill.

    by valion on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 08:36:58 PM PDT

    •  that a great way to put it (0+ / 0-)

      that a great way to put it, valion

      that Framing and Spin is just "common sense".

      too little of that around these days in washington!

      thanks for your comments

    •  Not at all... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It's about making anything you say Common Sense and about applying that common sense to your goal.

      Tax Relief:

      "He wants to raise your taxes!"

      Is he good or bad?

      "And of course your taxes will go up."

      Is that good or bad?

      "I will shrink government and give America Tax Relief."

      Is he good or bad?

      That depends, doesn't it. We know that, and they know that, but once the frame of Tax Relief is in play, those questions are already answered.

      That's framing.

      Freedom is not a commodity. No Shit Sherlock

      by k9disc on Sun Jun 17, 2007 at 09:51:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Think again Val (0+ / 0-)

      Your understanding of framing is sophomoric at best and, minus any caveats, you appear to lack any meaningful understanding of spin. You might like to study Alex Carey for a more comprehensive analysis of spin before attempting to "shorthand" the concept yourself.

      To be completely honest with ya Val, your comments appear to lack imagination and common sense themselves. Perhaps you should research before thinking out loud about concepts when you obviously haven't grasped the subtle nuances yourself. There's a life experience for you.

      I always want to hug bitter folks with superiority complexes! I feel so sorry for you, but remember, "old dogs can learn new tricks", consider benevolence rather than "valiance" when commenting on those less imaginative than yourself.

  •  Perfect diary n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Anyone who has been tortured, remains tortured. Primo Levi The Drowned and the Saved

    by abbeysbooks on Mon Jun 18, 2007 at 02:35:31 AM PDT

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