Party pollsters often reveal more than the vapid verbiage of their bosses. If Frank Luntz, the top GOP focus group master and phrase-mangler (called word doctoring), speaks for Republicans, then sane progressives are both better and worse off. Is word doctoring, I wonder, ever restrained by "death panels"?
Better off, because reality eventually will out, though replete with high suffering. If this guy is the GOP's brain, it's mired in old-style, discredited language and mindsets. Winston Churchill: "If you don't look facts in the face, they have a way of stabbing you in the back." Or biting you in the ass, in modern jargon. If Democrats could only publicize Luntz' absurd illogic here so that voters (and the president) get it the party of donkeys wouldn't look like such asses. Hell, they could dominate for a generation.
The bad news? Luntz' "research" is absorbed like alcohol by GOP power brokers, shakers and movers. If his nonsense propaganda reigns, the empire we call America won't be around long enough to care who rules remnant smoking ruins. Were Luntz' agenda obeyed, America will make history again, though not exactly with fanfare. No, we'd win the prize for the fastest ascent to world colossus, matched by the fastest plunge to third world non-entity. Say goodbye, kiddies, to our 1000+ military outposts worldwide and trillion dollar defense spending no one would loan bad pennies such treasure. See, I found good news amidst ruins.
Let us review the world according to Luntz and either laugh or cry. My commentary in italics. His bizarre claims were actually, indeed incredibly, printed in the Washington Post, which obviously doesn't scrutinize the logic of what it publishes.
"Republicans won the midterm elections. Now can they survive?"
By Frank I. Luntz"¨
RB: Actually, you guys mainly won the House, not the Senate, so overstatement right off. "Survival" is a straw man, considering the GOP survived Bush-Cheney.
The United States has just witnessed its third straight rubber band election. Once again, Americans had their patience stretched, fired a Washington run amok and now want their new leaders to snap back to attention.
RB: Cute puns, rightwing wit no doubt, but only some, rather conservative voters, not the United States nor "Americans," suffered stretched patience, nor "fired" all of "Washington." "Run Amok" really, is the Tea Party in charge yet? When was Washington last standing at "attention"?
The government Americans seek is simpler, more efficient and more accountable; one that takes on less but does better; one that executes the essential and eschews the excessive.
RB: "To generalize is to be an idiot," said William Blake, anticipating Luntz by 200 years. Second, I guarantee every sentence starting with "Americans" or speaking for the "American people" will promptly grind into wholesale insignificance, if not arrant nonsense before tumbling into a void of mendacity for which there is no exit.
For two election cycles, the winners overpromised and underdelivered. So, will a newly divided Washington finally learn how to govern effectively in dire times?
RB: What, bad behavior for only "two cycles"? Note indefensible diction: finally? newly-divided? govern effectively? On what planet does Luntz live? GOPland? These assertions fall into the bottomless ledge between idiocy and imbecility.
First, a warning to both sides. Republicans, for their part, must realize that the voters have given them a reprieve, not an endorsement. In my polling last week, GOP voters agreed with this statement by more than two to one: "I am willing to give the Republicans another chance, but if they mess up again, I'll vote them out again, too." That's hardly a cause for GOP celebration.
RB: Straw man warning, as there's no "must" for winners full of themselves, and who appointed Frank Luntz God? Note the blather: for their part, must realize, reprieve, another chance, mess up. Every phrase is nearly bereft of meaning, even for Republicans.
Similarly, Democrats must grasp that their defeats were not about deficient personalities or insufficient communication, but about their philosophy and substance. Roughly two out of three voters agreed with the statements that President Obama "has failed to deliver hope and change" and that in the midst of an economic crisis, Democrats "had their priorities wrong."