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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Gingrich Uses Fog Of Words To Cloud Our Memory

Dec. 9 (Bloomberg) — Newt Gingrich is back in contention for the Republican presidential nomination partly because he understands the power of words, the pervasiveness of amnesia, and the dark art of making them work together.

It’s still hard to imagine Gingrich as president. He’s likely to blow himself up before next November. But the scary thing for Democrats is that Gingrich grasps these subtextual forces better than they do. It makes him a less predictable and possibly more dangerous opponent than Mitt Romney in the general election.

  • Theodora30

    I have been waiting for someone to point out how incredibly stupid the use of the world “entitlement” is. Using the word “insurance” is not only not derogatory, it is also more accurate. Most people do not seem to understand that SS is exactly that – and insurance program for retirees, not an investment fund that can be passed on to heirs. The Democrats are complete boneheads when it comes to communication – Obama included – but it is journalists that should bear the lion’s share of the blame for allowing people to be duped by Republican propaganda. And it’s not just misleading words, it is also outright lies such as tax cuts that pay for themselves.

    It is way past time for the media to inform the public about the ubiquitous work of Frank Luntz in orchestrating Republicans’ Orwellian doublespeak. If the public had a clue about how Luntz test markets his deliberately misleading, manipulative phrases they would be as turned off as they now are by Grover Norquist’s bizarre power over the party. Norquist’s bizarre influence is someone else whose distructive influence our so-called liberal media has help keep secret. Ditto for the Kochs.

    In a democracy it is imperative that citizens know when they are being manipulated by propaganda controlled by puppet masters like these guys. Unfortunately they have been allowed to get away with their misinformation for so many years that it will be very difficult to convince millions of Americans that they have been played for fools. No democracy can survive unless it has a well-informed citizenry. Journalists were given special protection by our founders so that they can ensure that Americans get the information they need to participate effectively in our system of government.

  • Panicalep

    Let’s not forget the Republicans’ overuse of the word, “Obamacare”. It irks the heck out of me that in discussions with both parties, the Reps also get the Dems to refer to our Health Care Act as, “Obamacare”. All Democratic candidates should only use the offical title of the Health Care Act and before responding to Rebublican taunts on the subject they should ask the Reps if they were referring to the Health Care Act.

  • j_berry50

    ALL IT TAKES IS JUST A LITTLE TIME TO FIGURE THESE THINGS OUT BUT TRY TO CONVINCE CONGRESS !!

    The U.S. Congress sets a federal budget every year in the trillions of dollars. Few people know how much money that is, so we created a breakdown of federal spending in simple terms. Let’s put the 2011 federal budget into perspective:”
    “”””• U.S. income: $2,170,000,000,000″”
    “”””• Federal budget: $3,820,000,000,000″”
    “”””• New debt: $ 1,650,000,000,000″”
    “”””• National debt: $14,271,000,000,000″”
    “”””• Recent budget cut: $ 38,500,000,000 (about 1 percent of the budget)””
    “””” “”
    “”””It helps to think about these numbers in terms that we can relate to.””

    “”””Therefore, let’s “”remove eight zeros from these numbers”” and pretend this is the household budget for the fictitious Jones family.””
    “”””• Total annual income for the Jones family: $21,700″”
    “”””• Amount of money the Jones family spent: $38,200″”
    “”””• Amount of new debt added to the credit card: $16,500″”
    “”””• Outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710″”
    “”””Amount cut from the budget: $385″” “

  • the_donald

    Language is power. The sooner the Democrats figure this out the better. The general public votes on catch phrases and one liner bumper stickers. Dems need to pay closer attention to Madison ave and not Wall street or Main street. I’ve seen this happen for many years now. This is why Obama and the Dems can’t get their message out.

  • jgist

    Jonathan Alter has identified a crucial gap between the parties–language and messsages–and Gingrich’s mastery of the hyperbolic but powerful phrase, which he learned from Luntz. Democrats need to find their own set of messages, without the cynicism of Frank Luntz. One quibble–Alter cites Hendrik Hertberg as identifying Donna Shalala as the source of the term “entitlements” in 1979. The term dates at least from the 1974 Congressional Budget Act, which defined “entitlement authority” as one type of federal spending. It may have been used before that, but it dates at least to 1974, before Shalala became HUD secretary.

  • ed Clemensen

    While Gingrich does used language to mis-inform the general public, The carrier is as much at fault. First lets even look at that. The right claims that the media is left bias, that in itself is so untrue, but the media, in general, carrys the rights’ message into our very homes, and ignores the left. In example, in the general media, has anyone heard anything bad about killing child labor laws. How much have we heard about Obamacare costing us money, yet not hearing the CBO has stated that it has already saved the country billions of dollars especially the elderly. Or how about how Rottten Hugo Chavez is, while providing heating oil to thirty-eight states at a price that the people can afford , not ripping them off like some so called “job creating” “patriotic” companys, that support Romney want to do. We need to get the general media to give us the straight story like they use to do.

  • freethinker

    It is in complete amazement that I read the comments. It quite clear that Obama’s pettifogging has been completely ignored. He achieved office with vacuous speeches and a mesmerized press. And yet, when another individual offers verbal challenge, he is demonized for simply being better at it than Obama. It could also be he is smarter than Obama since we really have never been privy to Obama’s real records and Obama certainly hasn’t shown any intellect in handling the financial crisis, foreign policy or domestic issues. Leaving with his…speeches.

  • CHobkirk

    Have you ever wondered why is it that Republican blowhards swoon over Reagan and his being “the Great Communicator” and then attack President Obama because he delivers effective, evocative speeches? It seems to me that the current crop of Republican candidates are effectively communicating their vacuous ideas very effectively–Which is to say, they are presenting ineffective ideas ineffectively–surely an effective way to govern and to advertise their poor ideas… Poorly… Keep it up and I predict that the Republican party will suffer heavily at the polls this coming November. Keep up the good work… there are millions of Americans like me who are carefully watching this unfold and we WILL be campaigning and voting!

  • DaleCuthbrtson

    CAREER POLITICIANS
     
    Have we learned nothing in the past 10 years?
    While the Democrats / Republicans , Argue over who is right – who should be in control ?
     
    AMERICA SUFFERS!
     
    The real enemy of Democracy has shown it’s Ugly head  – WHO ?
     
    The CAREER  POLITICIAN  the –  STAGNATED – CESSPOOLS OF WASHINGTON.
    These are the old men on the hill who have lost site of what America is all about
     
    Who have no vision for America , or the American dream !
     
    They wear the Disguise of public servants – while only serving themselves , and it does not matter what party they belong to !
     
    Americans crave  – REAL change
     
    But will never have it until we clean house, and 
    VOTE OUT ALL THE CAREER POLITICIANS ON BOTH SIDES !
     
    WAKE UP AMERICA……………………..!
     
    VOTE FOR THAT REASON  –  NOV

  • DaleCuthbrtson

    CAREER POLITICIANS
     
    Have we learned nothing in the past 10 years?
    While the Democrats / Republicans , Argue over who is right – who should be in control ?
     
    AMERICA SUFFERS!
     
    The real enemy of Democracy has shown it’s Ugly head  – WHO ?
     
    The CAREER  POLITICIAN  the –  STAGNATED – CESSPOOLS OF WASHINGTON.
    These are the old men on the hill who have lost site of what America is all about
     
    Who have no vision for America , or the American dream !
     
    They wear the Disguise of public servants – while only serving themselves , and it does not matter what party they belong to !
     
    Americans crave  – REAL change
     
    But will never have it until we clean house, and 
    VOTE OUT ALL THE CAREER POLITICIANS ON BOTH SIDES !
     
    WAKE UP AMERICA……………………..!
     
    VOTE FOR THAT REASON  –  NOV

  • Michael A. Sawyer

    Corporate Leaders = ROBBER BARONS. Right Wing Politicians = CRONIES OF THE ROBBER BARONS. T Party = LACKEYS OF THE ROBBER BARONS. The Koch Bro’s,Art Poe, Grover Nordquist, Ann Coulter, Russ Limbaugh et al = POLITICAL THUGS. And last but not least The Religious Right = A BUNCH OF MISGUIDED FOOLS WHO BELIEVE THAT PEOPLE LIKE Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich and Bob Dole ARE EXAMPLES OF FAMILY VALUES!

  • peteserb

    The article is essentially correct. America’s collective memory fades quickly. Remember when “hope And Change” were so refreshing? Well America has discovered that didn’t work. So this time we’ll try “fair share”. Obama’s speech deliniated what he thinks is a fair share. But since he’s never held a real job, he has trouble explaining his fair share concept. Therefor now he must rely on historical figures to restore his image. Remember when he was like Lincoln? Then it was JFK, then FDR, now it’s teddy roosevelt. What a hack!

  • in.the.flood.zone

    There are two basic considerations regarding language that the Republicans have down pat. Both of these take advantage of the fact that the opposition has been napping. They are: one, redefine the terms and two, be the first to tell the story the way you want the public to remember it. It’s about time we started considering the impact of language itself in the public discourse! This is nothing more than Critical Thinking and Rhetoric, folks, the course we all yawned through. How many times in English 101 have we been reminded to “consider the audience?” Who even knew what that meant? Now this lapse has come back to bite us.
    Problem is, the left liberal camp has been talking to itself for far too long. It’s been unwilling to “talk down” to the uninitiated and so the uninitiated turn elsewhere for their information. Ergo, the rhetorical superiority of the Right. There’s more. The intimate link between the Right and Christian Fundamentalism has been forged via the art and craft of preaching. One needs think only of Jonathan Edwards, whose sermon such as “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” terrorized his congregations of a Sunday morning. This skill, of getting people to believe in your message, has been honed over generations and now shows up, not surprisingly, in high-stakes political campaigns. Liberals are almost always caught absolutely flat-footed by it. Holding the moral high ground means nothing. The rhetorical challenge must be defeated on its own level, without giving moral ground but utilizing a realistic assessment of the audience. Probably the only candidate for the presidency in 2012 that will be able to field it and bend it to his own purposes is Barack Obama.

  • RLongoni

    I think it is about time we stop making the accusation that public servants don’t hold real job. Being a public servant, whether one who is elected like the President, serving in the military, or holding an appointed civilian position in the government, are jobs. Referring to any of these positions as not being “real” jobs just needlessly diminishes what the millions holding jobs in the public sector do.