Friday, July 09, 2004

dissatisfaction and its discontents

i'm getting tired of having an opinion. instead of arguing about shit from here on out, i'm just going to start dropping chronic plates on yo bitch ass.

that being said, you should check out some of the stuff going on at the national constitution center in philly. in their media archive, they have the videos of debates and talks on topics ranging from gay marriage, to presidential power, to whether or not john quincy adams was circumcised. so far, i've only seen the gay marriage one, which was very interesting.

if you are an npr listener, you might recognize the national constitution center as the host for the annenberg center's show "justice talking" (get it, 'justice', 'just us' talking? those crazy shits on public radio kill me.) justice talking is a forum where current events are discussed in the hope of extending discourse beyond the 7 second sound bites on television. so far, i've listened to the 'abstinence only sex ed', 'attacking aids', and 'privitizing government' episodes, all of which were excellent.

one thing i found striking during the 'abstinence only' and 'gay marriage' debates was the use of framing techniques (previously blogged about) by the right-wing debaters. while the progressives would discuss facts, the reactionaries seemed to disregard those facts, instead trying to communicate an easily digestable (and often fearfull) vision by hammering the listener with carefully crafted and oft repeated phrases and imagery. i think that to the average npr listener, this comes off as strawmanish at best and childish/misleading at worst, but when the debate is projected to a larger national audience during the elections, perhaps the democracts should also use such tactics....'perhaps" being the key word. i'm still not sure if i can get behind a 'win at any costs' mentality.

jhc.

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