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Inflexibility as a Poor Narrative Stance: The Republicans on Health Care and Sarah Palin on Tucson

By       Message Bud Goodall     Permalink
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Because what she said was the rhetorical equivalent of scooping elephant poop.   Large steaming piles of it.  

Again, because I am a kinder, gentler sort of fellow after Tucson so I won't be saying much else about it.   But I will say this:   Inflexibility is a political loser's pathetic communication strategy designed only to hang on desperately to a funding base, and Palin and the House Republicans have embraced it.   They only care about the money.   You want to know what's wrong with our government?   Follow the money.   But especially follow the money that allows people who take an oath to defend our Constitution to ignore, willfully, the clause about promoting the public good.  

Sarah Palin, with her stubborn insistence on the innocence on gunsight images and a ridiculous denial of any responsibility for anti-government rhetoric, as well as the House Republicans in their backasswards and meaningless vote and continuing fabrications about health care that would, if left alone, benefit their own constituents, both deserve a lesson in good, old-fashioned ideas like truth and justice.   For our "American way of life" is all about supporting truth as well as helping out those less fortunate.   That's what "promoting the common good" means.

What I am saying can be summed up this way:   what Americans ultimately respect is not symbolic votes or stubborn adherence to stupidity, but instead flexibility .   What most of us want is a Congress that is reasonable, responsive to our needs, and respectful of scholarship on the vital issues of the day.  

Neither side has all the answers but remaining divided isn't going to solve any of them, and our not making full use of the resources available from known experts is just pathetic.   Climate change, economics, hate speech, counter-terrorism, and heath care: there are volumes of research on each of those subjects and countless others.   Written by people who know what we are talking about.

But no.   The rigid Republican response to the work of scholars is a loud nothing.   We are all suspect.   They just want to know if you claim to love Jesus or own a gun or believe that Obama is a socialist.   I'm sorry.   That rhetorical posturing gets you Sarah Palin.

Need I add that Palin is a just a waste of our nation's precious time?

Here's a little country wisdom I learned in Alabama that ought to echo loudly in Washington:   If you are too rigid to bend, you will break.

None of us can afford a Congress so rigid it breaks.   That pathetic vote yesterday showed us that you are willing to risk it.

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H. L. (Bud) Goodall, Jr. lives in Arizona where he is a college professor and writer. He has published 20 books and many articles and chapters on a variety of communication issues. His most recent books include Counter-Narrative: How Progressive (more...)

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