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The 7 - Current Events & Politics - US Election and faith in voter literacy---shocking! Register and log in to post!
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Stilton
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#1 Posted on 27.8.04 1021.25
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1024.44
Source: http://memepool.com/

There seems to be some discrepancy between the faith the Bush and Kerry campaigns place in their supporters’ abilities to think for themselves.

The Kerry campaign offers its supporters a handy style guide to refer to when writing letters to editors, etc. A style guide is handy, because it gives helpful hints on effective composition without telling the person writing the letter what to say. You can view the style guide here: http://www.johnkerry.com/mediacorps/styleguide.html

The Bush campaign however seems to have no compunction whatsoever about telling its supporters what to say. Rather than a style guide, the Bush website offers a set of pre-written paragraphs. All the die-hard Bush-supporter needs to do is click on whichever paragraph they’d like to regurgitate from the Bush website. Have a look: http://www.georgewbush.com/Economy/WriteNewspapers.aspx?AgendaID=2

It makes you wonder if the Bush campaign thinks its supporters can even write or think for themselves. Well, it makes me wonder anyway.

For the frighteningly zombified results of this kind of brain-corralling just click on the link below….

http://www.google.com/search?q=%22New+job+figures+and+other+recent+economic+data%22


(edited by Stilton on 27.8.04 1122)

(edited by Stilton on 27.8.04 1129)
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Grimis
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#2 Posted on 27.8.04 1050.38
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1052.01
I've been involed in letter-writing campaigns on the business end(i.e. coordinating them) and it is much better to dole out talking points and let the writers speak for themselves then it is to provide them with standard copy.

That being said, nobody is holding a gun to their heads forcing them to submit these form letters, either.
Roy.
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#3 Posted on 27.8.04 1119.30
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1121.29
Interestingly enough, I read the opinion page in our local newspaper yesterday for the first time in a long time, and the guy yesterday went word for word with the Bush page. So I've gone from thinking he was a smart guy who did a lot of research to a word processing robot.
Stilton
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#4 Posted on 27.8.04 1225.05
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1229.01
    Originally posted by Grimis
    I've been involed in letter-writing campaigns on the business end(i.e. coordinating them) and it is much better to dole out talking points and let the writers speak for themselves then it is to provide them with standard copy.

    That being said, nobody is holding a gun to their heads forcing them to submit these form letters, either.


You heard it here first, folks. Grimis admits that at least in this one area, the Kerry campaign has handled something "much better" than the Bush campaign. Mark it on you calendars and light a candle. This is a touching moment. *sniff*

Grimis, you do raise an interesting point about the guns being put to people's heads. My question is: why provide a template like this at all if you really don't want people to use it. Why do they think it's such a good idea to blanket the country with identical letters? Are they providing unthinking people with copy to send to newspapers hoping that it will find an unthinking readership who don't know any better? And this raises my point, again. If that's the case, the Bush campaign must think their supporters really don't think for themselves, for the most part, and that this cut-n-paste propaganda, if spread widely and thinnly enough might act a kind of subversive (and free!) ad campaign?

And there you have it...full circle. For once, I agree with the something the Bush campaign believes in... their supportets don't think for themselves for the most part.
Grimis
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#5 Posted on 27.8.04 1231.48
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1233.11
    Originally posted by Stilton
    My question is: why provide a template like this at all if you really don't want people to use it. Why do they think it's such a good idea to blanket the country with identical letters? Are they providing unthinking people with copy to send to newspapers hoping that it will find an unthinking readership who don't know any better? And this raises my point, again. If that's the case, the Bush campaign must think their supporters really don't think for themselves, for the most part, and that this cut-n-paste propaganda, if spread widely and thinnly enough might act a kind of subversive (and free!) ad campaign?
I really have no idea why they would advertise it as much as they do. It makes absolutely no sense.
BigVitoMark
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#6 Posted on 27.8.04 1733.18
Reposted on: 27.8.11 1734.28
    Originally posted by Stilton
    Why do they think it's such a good idea to blanket the country with identical letters? Are they providing unthinking people with copy to send to newspapers hoping that it will find an unthinking readership who don't know any better?


No, but I think it's a pretty safe bet that Average Joe in the deep south is reading a different local daily than his counterpart in the pacific northwest, who is reading a different local daily than the guy in Minnesota who doesn't know who to vote for. If they get the same letter in a local paper in every community in the country, so what? The vast majority of people, who don't read multiple newspapers every day, aren't going to know the difference. They read the letter once, and have the message to consider.

    Originally posted by Stilton


    And this raises my point, again. If that's the case, the Bush campaign must think their supporters really don't think for themselves, for the most part, and that this cut-n-paste propaganda, if spread widely and thinnly enough might act a kind of subversive (and free!) ad campaign?


I don't think it's as simple as saying that Bush supporters don't think for themselves. Not everyone with an opinion is good at articulating their viewpoint, especially in print. I've known some reasonably intelligent people who can make their cases in a discussion but for whatever reason just can't present themselves coherently through writing. These, shall we call them, aides can be a good way of mobilizing otherwise unavailable vocal support.

That brings me to my other thought, which is that these blurbs aren't meant entirely to be copy-n-pasted into letters but also to plant the idea of writing one's own letter in the minds of supporters. Whether they use a pre-approved blurb isn't ultimately important if it inspires someone to have their own say in the local paper in support of Bush's campaign.


(edited by BigVitoMark on 27.8.04 1534)
Stilton
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#7 Posted on 28.8.04 1043.35
Reposted on: 28.8.11 1045.11
    Originally posted by BigVitoMark
    ...but I think it's a pretty safe bet that Average Joe in the deep south is reading a different local daily than his counterpart in the pacific northwest, who is reading a different local daily than the guy in Minnesota who doesn't know who to vote for. If they get the same letter in a local paper in every community in the country, so what? The vast majority of people, who don't read multiple newspapers every day, aren't going to know the difference. They read the letter once, and have the message to consider.


That's my point exactly... the Bush campaign seems to be counting on its supporters not paying attention to the big picture. It seems to be counting on them being short-sighted, so they can pull some PR wool over their eyes. Identical (officially sanctioned) letters sent in to various papers sent in by complicit functional illiterates amounts to little more than a way of placing White House sanctioned adverstising in local papers without paying for the ad space. The White House wrote these letters, not the people who sent them. It's a kind of fraud for people to sign their names to it as if they'd written the letter. If you send it in to a newspaper claiming you'd written it, it's not the same thing as signing a petition.


    Originally posted by BigVitoMark
    Whether they use a pre-approved blurb isn't ultimately important if it inspires someone to have their own say in the local paper in support of Bush's campaign.


I would question your use of the phrase "their own say"... as the provided text on the Bush website is the White House's own say, and no one else's. Sure the website says "sample letter" and "writing tips", but the fact of the matter is all you have to do is click on a pre-written paragraph and it appears in your letter, word for word.

It kind of makes sense that the Bush campaign would count on its supporters not being able to string a coherent sentence together on their own, since Bush can't seem to do it either.

But when you see something like that on the Bush website, shouldn't Bush's supporters feel condescended to and insulted?

(edited by Stilton on 28.8.04 1146)
Net Hack Slasher
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#8 Posted on 1.9.04 0040.50
Reposted on: 1.9.11 0041.31
Bush is just trying to get in the good graces and connect with youth voters. Teaching them the fine art of copy and pasting your term papers/work projects from the internet
PalpatineW
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#9 Posted on 1.9.04 0054.04
Reposted on: 1.9.11 0057.46
Stilton,

Do you post for any reason other than to further your own sense of superiority? It may come as a shock to you, but people who disagree with you aren't necessarily "functional illiterates."

What's wrong with the following train of thought:

1. I support George Bush.
2. The best way to help George Bush get elected is to spread his message.
3. George Bush has printed a message which I agree with. I'm going to help disseminate it.

Have you ever worked on a political campaign? If you had, I think you'd stop making your grand and dire pronouncements on the state of the "functionally illiterate" American voter, as this stuff is pretty normal.
RYDER FAKIN
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#10 Posted on 1.9.04 0704.52
Reposted on: 1.9.11 0705.13
It makes you wonder if the Bush campaign thinks its supporters can even write or think for themselves. Well, it makes me wonder anyway.

Nope...I'm personally as dumb as a box of rocks. For example, for the life of me, I have never been able to understand why the Democratic Party, as much as they *love* the Middle Class and poor people in this country, continue to insist that business owners and people that have busted their ass to make theirs should be responsible for those who do not or will not.

If the Democrats and liberals in general cared so much, why not hold a Hollywood fundrasier, have everyone throw in $1 million dollars, have people like George Soros, Steven Speilberg and Kerry's old lady Heinz toss in about 20 million apiece (I'm sure they'll never miss it)...let's see. My lack of intelligence notwithstanding, that sounds like about $300 million, or about the same amount Kerry is spending on his election campaign. With that kind of dough distributed evenly, that means every American could be the recipiant of about ONE MILLION TAX FREE DOLLARS~! Poverty is over! No more misery! BEER FOR ALL!

Now then...if stupid little ole me can think of that, why can't the liberal elite? And of course, the same could be said about the Republicans and their money, but I don't see Bush's economic plan coming after even MORE of my dough to support those "less fortunate".

So, I'll be here dumb, supporting a President that is good for America and good for business. You continue to wonder and be Canadian. The rest of you can make up your own minds which is better

FLEA

(edited by RYDER FAKIN on 1.9.04 0814)

(edited by RYDER FAKIN on 1.9.04 1051)
spf
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#11 Posted on 1.9.04 1002.01
Reposted on: 1.9.11 1003.38
    Originally posted by RYDER FAKIN
    If the Democrats and liberals in general cared so much, why not hold a Hollywood fundrasier, have everyone throw in $1 million dollars, have people like George Soros, Steven Speilberg and Kerry's old lady Heinz toss in about 20 million apiece (I'm sure they'll never miss it)...let's see. My lack of intelligence notwithstanding, that sounds like about $300 million, or about the same amount Kerry is spending on his election campaign. With that kind of dough distributed evenly, that means every American could be the recipiant of about ONE MILLION TAX FREE DOLLARS~! Poverty is over! No more misery! BEER FOR ALL

Two things:
1. Flea's using that GOP math where $300 million distributed to 300 million Americans somehow gives each one a million dollars. Now I understand how the GOP can be the fiscally conservative party yet run up a half trillion deficit, they just don't know how to use a calculator

2. When all the Christian Conservatives start heeding the "it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle" idea, then I'll call out the rich libs to have that fundraiser. Or am I the only one who's seen Pat Robertson's house?
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