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Raw Politics: Words matter for Clinton, Obama

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  • Raw Politics: Words matter for Clinton, Obama

    Sometimes we say things with great confidence, only to find out that we are speaking the wrong language.

    That's happening to Hillary Clinton right now. She is talking the language of experience, hard work, traditional Democratic values, and the rough and tumble politics that has come to dominate Washington.

    The problem is that is not the language in which many voters are listening. Their mother tongue grew out of Obamaland. Or, more accurately, he arrived in their universe speaking the language they have longed to hear, and now only his message is getting through. Hope. Dreams. Unity. Yes, we can.

    Both candidates have quite similar plans for the nation. They admit it.

    So ask a Clinton supporter why they don't like Barack Obama, and the answer often comes down to his words. He is too much of a showman, they say. All talk, no action. Grand dreams, but no practical plans. A cheerleader? Yes. A real leader? No.

    But ask an Obama supporter why don't they like Clinton, and the answer is in her words too. Too much bureaucratic doublespeak, they say. Too interested in debates of the past, not the promise of the future. All plans, no dreams. A party leader? Yes. A real leader? No.

    So why do I say this language gap is hurting Clinton more? Because the voting says his language is connecting in more places with more people.

    One highly experienced Democratic insider told me that the Old Guard of the party is utterly confused by the appeal of Obama -- by the oceans of young people, moderates, and independents flocking to his camp.

    They don't know what to make of these new Democrats. They are puzzled that so many of these folks don't seem to really even care much about the Democratic Party; they just like the man. As the insider told me, the traditional Democratic leaders "don't even know how to talk to these Obama people."

    Clinton may yet become the nominee. Remember, in the delegate count, she is barely behind. It would be foolish for anyone to write off her campaign, her years of experience, or her tenacity. But even if she rises back to the top, closing the gap that has grown in the party is going to take more than waving the Democratic flag. It's going to take language lessons.

    In the end, language matters.
    "Let me lay it right on the line. Bigotry and racism are among the deadliest social ills plaguing the world today. The only way to destroy them is to expose them. If man is ever to be worthy of his destiny, we must fill our hearts with tolerance.- Stan Lee (circa 1968)

    "Compete less with the person in front of you than the person inside of you." - Anonymous

  • #2
    Language and expressions -

    Hillary loses points when she scowls -
    Turning the other cheek is better than burying the other body.

    Official Sport Lounge Sponsor of Rhode Island - Quincy Jones - Yadier Molina who knows no fear.
    God is stronger and the problem knows it.

    2017 BOTB bracket

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    • #3
      I was thinking on this the other evening, whilst dealing with a nice fever induced level of surreality. Are there any questions that could be dropped on Obama that could trip up his support? A question that anything but a well rehearsed response could end up biting him in the backside on one side or another of his support base. Most questions he has been able to give his well rehearsed non answers to, because they aren't usually yes or no style questions.

      The only thing I could come up with was " Senator Obama, What are your views on reparations to the descendants of slaves?".

      Thoughts?
      "There is an old saying that goes 'no matter how good you are, there is always someone better.' That someone is me." - Chiun

      I require the lubrication to successfully handle some of them. *sigh*- Sunuvanun

      Matrem tuam pedicavi

      "I kinda dig Johnson" -Triggercut

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      • #4
        Most Americans, I think, do not want to relive the partisan battles of the 1990s. That does not mean that there aren't still issues that will divide us -- of course there will be -- but the take-no-prisoners, everyone-must-be-destroyed philosophy that both sides seemed to operate under no longer has any appeal to most of us.

        That's why Hillary can't gain any traction. We all realize what the general election and her presidency would look like -- one bloody battle after another. People are sick of it, so sick that it outweighs their admiration for what Bill Clinton was able to accomplish.

        With Obama, you basically get all of Hillary's issues without her baggage. For crissakes, the country is at war. There is still a lot of folks who would rather feel united than divided. He has done the best job of tapping into that feeling, and he looks like the person who's best equipped to make that happen.
        "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."
        --Albert Einstein

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        • #5
          ::imagines destroying other side::

          ::visualizes smoking ruin where John Boehner's desk used to be::

          ::pictures Rush Limbaugh doing the morning traffic report in Boise, Idaho::

          ::smiles::
          Official sponsor of the St. Louis Cardinals

          "This is a heavyweight bout indeed."--John Rooney, Oct. 27, 2011

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          • #6
            Originally posted by blue zone View Post
            I was thinking on this the other evening, whilst dealing with a nice fever induced level of surreality. Are there any questions that could be dropped on Obama that could trip up his support? A question that anything but a well rehearsed response could end up biting him in the backside on one side or another of his support base. Most questions he has been able to give his well rehearsed non answers to, because they aren't usually yes or no style questions.

            The only thing I could come up with was " Senator Obama, What are your views on reparations to the descendants of slaves?".

            Thoughts?
            The Lounge leads the world again -

            I believe his answer would be -

            "Moon, Schwa, Greatest Show and Groove have won that argument already."
            Turning the other cheek is better than burying the other body.

            Official Sport Lounge Sponsor of Rhode Island - Quincy Jones - Yadier Molina who knows no fear.
            God is stronger and the problem knows it.

            2017 BOTB bracket

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by blue zone View Post
              I was thinking on this the other evening, whilst dealing with a nice fever induced level of surreality. Are there any questions that could be dropped on Obama that could trip up his support? A question that anything but a well rehearsed response could end up biting him in the backside on one side or another of his support base. Most questions he has been able to give his well rehearsed non answers to, because they aren't usually yes or no style questions.

              The only thing I could come up with was " Senator Obama, What are your views on reparations to the descendants of slaves?".

              Thoughts?
              Probably not in the dem primary, but certainly in the general election. "What are your views on affirmative action programs?" There are a lot of Reagan dems out there that are sensitive to that topic.
              "You can't handle my opinions." Moedrabowsky

              Jeffro is a hell of a good man.

              "A liberal is a man too broadminded to take his own side in a quarrel." - Robert Frost

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Schwahalala View Post
                The Lounge leads the world again -

                I believe his answer would be -

                "Moon, Schwa, Greatest Show and Groove have won that argument already."
                I don't remember that happening.
                "There is an old saying that goes 'no matter how good you are, there is always someone better.' That someone is me." - Chiun

                I require the lubrication to successfully handle some of them. *sigh*- Sunuvanun

                Matrem tuam pedicavi

                "I kinda dig Johnson" -Triggercut

                Comment


                • #9
                  ::further visualizes the results of destroying the other side::

                  ::sees withdrawal from Iraq, real universal health care, protection of civil liberties, environmental stewardship, protection of a woman's right to choose, upholding of the principle of secular government::

                  Where do I sign up?
                  Official sponsor of the St. Louis Cardinals

                  "This is a heavyweight bout indeed."--John Rooney, Oct. 27, 2011

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by kah View Post
                    ::further visualizes the results of destroying the other side::

                    ::sees withdrawal from Iraq, real universal health care, protection of civil liberties, environmental stewardship, protection of a woman's right to choose, upholding of the principle of secular government::

                    Where do I sign up?
                    Here's hoping you get 60 dems in the senate. Otherwise, President Obama/Clinton is going to actually have to move a "tad bit" to the right to get anything done.
                    "You can't handle my opinions." Moedrabowsky

                    Jeffro is a hell of a good man.

                    "A liberal is a man too broadminded to take his own side in a quarrel." - Robert Frost

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by FAR52 View Post
                      Here's hoping you get 60 dems in the senate. Otherwise, President Obama/Clinton is going to actually have to move a "tad bit" to the right to get anything done.
                      Well, if we "destroyed" you, that would be a given. I'll take a 1932-style destruction that left the Republicans unable do do anything more than bitch about the New Deal. That would rule.
                      Official sponsor of the St. Louis Cardinals

                      "This is a heavyweight bout indeed."--John Rooney, Oct. 27, 2011

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by kah View Post
                        ::further visualizes the results of destroying the other side::

                        ::sees withdrawal from Iraq, real universal health care, protection of civil liberties, environmental stewardship, protection of a woman's right to choose, upholding of the principle of secular government::

                        Where do I sign up?
                        Don't forget to visualize the Republicans taking over both houses in 2010. Iraq will not be easy to drop, universal healthcare is unlikely, the rest is woohoo.

                        IMO the best result for the Dems would be for McCain to win, and carry the onus for the inevitable Iraq drawdown/ loss, whilst struggling to right an economy that the people are incorrectly hanging on the Pubs shoulders. That way, they take easy control of both houses and walk into the 2012 presidency. Who knows, maybe something positive will happen along the way....like actual across the aisle dialogue.
                        "There is an old saying that goes 'no matter how good you are, there is always someone better.' That someone is me." - Chiun

                        I require the lubrication to successfully handle some of them. *sigh*- Sunuvanun

                        Matrem tuam pedicavi

                        "I kinda dig Johnson" -Triggercut

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by blue zone View Post
                          Don't forget to visualize the Republicans taking over both houses in 2010.
                          Why? Because of the legions of people who will stand up and demand that they lose health care and we re-invade Iraq again? Good luck with that.

                          Who knows, maybe something positive will happen along the way....like actual across the aisle dialogue.
                          This is the great conceptual error that I've seen in a thousand "bipartisanship is awesome" threads. Why is "actual across the aisle dialogue" good? Why is it an end? What do we get out of it? Why should I want to see Democrats and Republicans be buddies? What benefit do we as a country derive if Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell go out for ice cream and cake?
                          Official sponsor of the St. Louis Cardinals

                          "This is a heavyweight bout indeed."--John Rooney, Oct. 27, 2011

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kah View Post
                            This is the great conceptual error that I've seen in a thousand "bipartisanship is awesome" threads. Why is "actual across the aisle dialogue" good? Why is it an end? What do we get out of it? Why should I want to see Democrats and Republicans be buddies? What benefit do we as a country derive if Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell go out for ice cream and cake?
                            Because it's better for the country. It doesn't mean that both sides don't fight like hell for what they believe in, but what changed in the 1990s is that both sides began to view the other side as "evil." I don't think that's good for anybody. Because when that happens, winning is the only thing, and you do whatever it takes -- lie, Swift Boat, make up shit -- to win.

                            Talking and respecting the other side doesn't hurt your cause. It brings more people to it.
                            "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."
                            --Albert Einstein

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by kennyboyerfan View Post
                              Most Americans, I think, do not want to relive the partisan battles of the 1990s. That does not mean that there aren't still issues that will divide us -- of course there will be -- but the take-no-prisoners, everyone-must-be-destroyed philosophy that both sides seemed to operate under no longer has any appeal to most of us.

                              That's why Hillary can't gain any traction. We all realize what the general election and her presidency would look like -- one bloody battle after another. People are sick of it, so sick that it outweighs their admiration for what Bill Clinton was able to accomplish.

                              With Obama, you basically get all of Hillary's issues without her baggage. For crissakes, the country is at war. There is still a lot of folks who would rather feel united than divided. He has done the best job of tapping into that feeling, and he looks like the person who's best equipped to make that happen.
                              Well said.
                              "I am for truth no matter who says it. I am for justice no matter who it is for or against."...Malcom X

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