Saturday, October 17, 2009

PolitiSpeak - Very Important to Know

Several months ago, when I was awakened to how really bleak the future of our country had become, I felt totally helpless to do anything about it, but knew something had to be done before it was too late. I wanted so badly to be able to make a difference, but I didn't know where to start. I started this blog simply as a way to "relieve" the pent up anger and angst that I was feeling with nearly every news report of TARP, Omnibus Package, Bank Bail out, AIG, GM and Chrysler. The more I heard, the worse I felt and I had to "let it out" in some fashion.

Since I started this blog a couple months ago, I have been continually educating myself through research for my blogs and through other avenues. I watched town hall meetings on television. I went to a local tea party rally. And even more intimidating to me, an apolitical person, I became a member of a new activist group who holds the same values and political views that I have, and whose members feel the same emotions.

I had not been aware that so many others had the same feelings that I was experiencing, not just in my town, but all across the country. So now we all know that there is momentum in this conservative movement to regain the country and protect it for our children and future generations. But we could be in danger of losing that momentum. We have to learn that in order to get our point across, as a group or an individual, we must use words and phrases that the liberals, particularly those in government will hear. They use their own terminology and spit out their politi-speak without ever engaging their brains.

"It's not what you say; it's what they hear." - Luntz Maslansky Strategic Research.

Nothing drove home the importance of using words and phrases that will be heard more clearly than when after enduring several grueling townhall meetings, Arlen Specter said on ABC's This Week, “I think we have to bear in mind, that although those people need to be heard and have a right to be heard, that they are not really representative of America in my opinion. We have to be careful here not to let those town meetings make the scene that influences what we do on health policy.”

Bless his ignorant heart! I decided that I needed to learn about how to really be heard. So, this article will give you a few of the words and phrases that you should substitute in your way of speaking so that you will be able to get and to hold the attention of those who literally are holding your future in their hands. These phrases are what are recommended by an expert wordsmith, Dr. Frank Luntz, in his books on this topic - Words that Work, and What America Really Wants... Really. I recommend that you get and read these books for more information on how to communicate effectively with politicians and your liberals friends and family. (Thank you, Dr. Luntz, for educating me to be a more effective communicator!)

These are terms that no longer are taken seriously by politicians. They see your lips move, but because you're using passe words, they don't hear you. So, by updating your terminology, you can be taken more seriously when speaking to politicians and liberals. As an example of what Dr. Luntz says about updated terminology, here examples that were pulled from his Words that Work:
  • A used car is now pre-owned vehicle.
  • A secretary is now an administrative assistant.
  • A stewardess is now a flight attendant.
  • Garbage removal is now sanitation services.
  • Gay marriage is now same-sex marriage.
Choose words that inspire action:
  • Instead of process, use progress.
  • Instead of strategy use step-by-step approach.
Common phrases that make a difference include the following:
  • Automobile manufacturers rather than automobile companies.
  • Fuel efficiency rather than fuel savings.
If you go to town halls or tea parties or to some other organized protest, arrive especially early and sit in the front. If you have the opportunity to speak or to ask a question, use terms like "as a mom" or "as a dad", or "I regularly exercise my right to vote", that gives validity to your position - and let children speak if they can.

Simplicity is the most powerful way to communicate. In fact, the more simple the better. You will want to make your own signs. Pre-printed ones are not taken seriously - even Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Boxer mentioned that one (but ignored the ACORN and SEIU ones!). Keep your message positive - and not negative - because this keeps the left from having anything to use against the movement. You should use some of these phrases on your signs:
  • "Why?" - and if asked about your sign. Get them to explain their position.
  • "Accountability - Why not?"
  • "I have a right to be heard."
  • "How much will it cost?" Stop wasting my money.
  • "Who will $ for it?"
  • "Before you sign it - READ IT."
  • "Don't make promises you can't keep."
  • "The IRS, the Post Office, Katrina... now healthcare?
So, now you are getting an idea that the old way of speaking needs to be updated because these new words and phrases are the words the politicians and their liberal supporters are using. If you continue using the old terms, you lose your credibility with them - as Mr. Specter suggested in his comment about the town halls!

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