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US Politics: Be Careful Out There


Fragile Bird

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I was trying to think of something witty along the lines of “the thread no one wants to open”, but didn’t have the heart. And then there was a reaction to my post in the Best of the Internet thread, where I responded to the “invisible threat” prank going around by saying, why, the threat of being shot at the mall or the movie theatre or wherever isn’t enough?

Damn it all guys. I can say be careful out there but it seems like an impossible task, from books being banned to reproductive rights being stomped on, to death being a possibility for any woman who gets pregnant, to being shot at the mall or run over at the bus stop. US Politics have become so incredibly complicated. 

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29 minutes ago, Fragile Bird said:

US Politics have become so incredibly complicated. 

Nah. They're pretty simple. Either you're part of the Republican party and have a whole lot of leopards eating faces of your enemies or you're having your face eaten. 

In more depressing news, a recent poll has Biden losing to Trump by 6% and is massively underwater in approval rating:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/tablet/2023/05/05/april-28-may-3-2023-washington-post-abc-news-poll/?itid=lk_inline_manual_2

One poll, yadda yadda. But it's not a good sign, especially since as far as I can tell there hasn't been anything massive going on to sink Biden's rating. Maybe the bank stuff?

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Just accept it, the average person in this country is pretty dumb when it comes to politics and they're likely not going to try and educate themselves. So Democrats need to further dumb down their messaging. It sucks, but what else can you do?

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25 minutes ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

In more depressing news, a recent poll has Biden losing to Trump by 6% and is massively underwater in approval rating:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/tablet/2023/05/05/april-28-may-3-2023-washington-post-abc-news-poll/?itid=lk_inline_manual_2

One poll, yadda yadda. But it's not a good sign, especially since as far as I can tell there hasn't been anything massive going on to sink Biden's rating. Maybe the bank stuff?

Not that a poll like that is good news, but if anything, I'd wait until Trump jumps more forcefully into the media spotlight before taking the temperature. He's enjoyed some benefit of the doubt because the larger public has forgotten how chaotic, nasty, and generally unlikeable he is. How that could be possible, I don't know. "Independents" and "undecided voters" surely are some fascinating species.

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23 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Just accept it, the average person in this country is pretty dumb when it comes to politics and they're likely not going to try and educate themselves. So Democrats need to further dumb down their messaging. It sucks, but what else can you do?

I don't think that matters. I realize that you believe that the message is all that matters, and have believed that for a long time despite overwhelming evidence that it doesn't, but messaging really isn't a big deal. And it is especially not the problem that because most voters are dumb they just aren't getting the subtle nuance. 

Right now the big deal is that inflation sucks, banks are closing down and getting bailed out, people feel that the economy is trash (even though it largely isn't), people feel Biden is old and feeble, and people fear things like the debt ceiling coming to a crash. Messaging doesn't change any of that shit. And the media ain't gonna carry that different message even if Biden et al wants it. 

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36 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Just accept it, the average person in this country is pretty dumb when it comes to politics and they're likely not going to try and educate themselves. So Democrats need to further dumb down their messaging. It sucks, but what else can you do?

We Dm Crts

We LK jbs

U vot Dm Crts

We LK ur jbs

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2024! 

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1 hour ago, Fragile Bird said:

Damn it all guys. I can say be careful out there but it seems like an impossible task

This weekend, for the first time ever, walking about the streets here I kept thinking, "Where, what will I do if someone comes along firing at us on this block?"

In ye olden daze here in NYC a crazy guy came around the corner one night laffing madly and brandishing a gun.  He just kept laffing and I kept going to duck into a doorway -- these were in the nights long ago when if one worked late where I got out from the subway the streets were deserted almost entirely.  That was long ago.

But I've always been mindful (most of the time) of what's going on around me when I go out.  One learns that in NYC quickly.  But with these sorts of killings there is no mindful way to catch what's about to happen until it happens.

We are in a 'soft' shooting civil war.  The fascists are softening up the entire country with these relentless massacres.  This is the plan, a feature, not a random crazy thing.  This is what they want.

And those of you who are going, "O now, Z's gone off too far yet again -- recall how from way back you reacted to such assessments about the horrors that were then happening on my part of what They are doing and why, to later come around to noticing that this is indeed what They are doing.  Believe me, I am not pleased to be right about these things.

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1 hour ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

One poll, yadda yadda. But it's not a good sign, especially since as far as I can tell there hasn't been anything massive going on to sink Biden's rating. Maybe the bank stuff?

Well, the poll was conducted right after he announced he was running.  Trump's numbers, too, went down significantly when he announced - albeit in his case there were other idiotic things he was doing you could point to.  I think it's pretty clear it's merely an expression that most people - and especially most people that are gonna move these numbers - don't want EITHER of them to run.

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22 minutes ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

I don't think that matters. I realize that you believe that the message is all that matters, and have believed that for a long time despite overwhelming evidence that it doesn't, but messaging really isn't a big deal. And it is especially not the problem that because most voters are dumb they just aren't getting the subtle nuance. 

Right now the big deal is that inflation sucks, banks are closing down and getting bailed out, people feel that the economy is trash (even though it largely isn't), people feel Biden is old and feeble, and people fear things like the debt ceiling coming to a crash. Messaging doesn't change any of that shit. And the media ain't gonna carry that different message even if Biden et al wants it. 

It's not all that matters, but it does matter. Just like you said, people are being told the economy sucks even though it doesn't. THAT'S MESSAGING. Everything in your second paragraph is messaging. Democrats have been fucking horrible about this for a long time and Idk how anyone can deny it at this point. 

Just use this as an example. People were down on the last few years of Obama's presidency, specifically on the economy. But they were really high on Trump's first two years. Except most of the data shows that Obama's last two years were better than Trump's first two years, and Trump was coasting off what Obama did. Why the disconnect? Because one side hammered home simple things over and over while the other wanted to have an advanced academic conversation. 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, DMC said:

Well, the poll was conducted right after he announced he was running.  Trump's numbers, too, went down significantly when he announced - albeit in his case there were other idiotic things he was doing you could point to.  I think it's pretty clear it's merely an expression that most people - and especially most people that are gonna move these numbers - don't want EITHER of them to run.

What a country, where everyone hates their two choices and then still allows them to be the two choices. We're so fucked in the long run.

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24 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

It's not all that matters, but it does matter. Just like you said, people are being told the economy sucks even though it doesn't. THAT'S MESSAGING. Everything in your second paragraph is messaging. Democrats have been fucking horrible about this for a long time and Idk how anyone can deny it at this point. 

Just use this as an example. People were down on the last few years of Obama's presidency, specifically on the economy. But they were really high on Trump's first two years. Except most of the data shows that Obama's last two years were better than Trump's first two years, and Trump was coasting off what Obama did. Why the disconnect? Because one side hammered home simple things over and over while the other wanted to have an advanced academic conversation. 

I agree, and I am generally hard on Democratic/progressive messaging, but in fairness, part of the reason the right wing is better at framing things is because they go for cheap criticism, discontent, and fear mongering. It's a lot easier for people to relate to and understand, unfortunately.

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34 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

It's not all that matters, but it does matter. Just like you said, people are being told the economy sucks even though it doesn't. THAT'S MESSAGING. Everything in your second paragraph is messaging. Democrats have been fucking horrible about this for a long time and Idk how anyone can deny it at this point. 

But the Dems are saying about as simple a message as you can get - the economy is good. I'm not sure you can make it simpler than that! So if it isn't about being a simple message but it's about effective messaging you're talking about a different thing.

34 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Just use this as an example. People were down on the last few years of Obama's presidency, specifically on the economy. But they were really high on Trump's first two years. Except most of the data shows that Obama's last two years were better than Trump's first two years, and Trump was coasting off what Obama did. Why the disconnect? Because one side hammered home simple things over and over while the other wanted to have an advanced academic conversation. 

Citation really fucking needed. There's absolutely nothing out there saying that the problem was a discussion issue. 

Quite frankly, the problem is that the Republicans have an advanced amount of media in the bank for them spewing out propaganda that has little to no actual relationship to facts. Democrats don't have that. The best they have is more liberal sources that are somewhat happy to spin things, but they all spin things a different way. Republicans have the same talking point coming from the same media sources and repeat them ad nauseum on the same feeds, over and over again. That isn't 'simple' messaging, that's having marching orders dictated to them and everyone following along. If you want to call that out that's fine, but you're not going to win that by Biden making a simple speech, and you're not getting Obama to win that by saying things less eloquently. 

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51 minutes ago, Phylum of Alexandria said:

I agree, and I am generally hard on Democratic/progressive messaging, but in fairness, part of the reason the right wing is better at framing things is because they go for cheap criticism, discontent, and fear mongering. It's a lot easier for people to relate to and understand, unfortunately.

Yes, I think we all agree there.

39 minutes ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

But the Dems are saying about as simple a message as you can get - the economy is good. I'm not sure you can make it simpler than that! So if it isn't about being a simple message but it's about effective messaging you're talking about a different thing.

Idk, YMMV, but Dems talk about the economy being strong after several other issues and I've rarely heard one make an argument as strong as Republicans do while actually having the better hand.

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Citation really fucking needed. There's absolutely nothing out there saying that the problem was a discussion issue. 

Citation? Let's say most of our collective lifespans? Republicans have regularly enjoyed a plus on economic policy despite the evidence being overwhelmingly against them. Why do you think that is? They spike the football when they run for -3 yards. Obama, probably the best Democratic leader of either of our lifetimes, said specifically don't do that when if he behaved like them he could have possibly changed the entire narrative. And then Trump came along and immediately spiked the football and the public went with it. 

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Quite frankly, the problem is that the Republicans have an advanced amount of media in the bank for them spewing out propaganda that has little to no actual relationship to facts. Democrats don't have that. The best they have is more liberal sources that are somewhat happy to spin things, but they all spin things a different way. Republicans have the same talking point coming from the same media sources and repeat them ad nauseum on the same feeds, over and over again. That isn't 'simple' messaging, that's having marching orders dictated to them and everyone following along. If you want to call that out that's fine, but you're not going to win that by Biden making a simple speech, and you're not getting Obama to win that by saying things less eloquently. 

If you can't see that as a messaging advantage, Idk what else to tell you. Dems could do something similar. They actually have more supporters, a larger media presence and smarter people overall. But they won't fight the same way. Bringing a knife to a gun fight that you don't even want to use is a pretty shitty way of winning, especially when the other side only cares about winning, and at all costs, ethics and morals be damned. 

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21 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Citation? Let's say most of our collective lifespans? Republicans have regularly enjoyed a plus on economic policy despite the evidence being overwhelmingly against them. Why do you think that is? They spike the football when they run for -3 yards. Obama, probably the best Democratic leader of either of our lifetimes, said specifically don't do that when if he behaved like them he could have possibly changed the entire narrative. And then Trump came along and immediately spiked the football and the public went with it. 

I don't think that's it, and your lifetime of experience is not actually data. 

Republicans have enjoyed a plus on economic policy since Reagan. That isn't messaging, that's simple legacy. It's the same reason Dems have had a plus on things like social issues by default - even when Clinton fucked over welfare. It's branding, not messaging. That sucks, but changing the message isn't going to change that any time soon. 

I mean sure, you can blame Obama for doing not enough here but that was 7 years ago. Biden isn't doing that at all. He is constantly taking credit for successes in the economy. Over and over again. In real simple words - lowest unemployment in 50 years, lowest black unemployment EVER. The problem is not the message. 

21 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

If you can't see that as a messaging advantage, Idk what else to tell you. Dems could do something similar.

 

No, they really can't. They do not have the centralized moneyed interests that Republicans do. They do not have a massive central media empire that answers to basically one person. Nor do they have any particular interest in doing so. More importantly, your original thesis was that Democrats need to put out more simple messages, which has absolutely nothing to do with having a structural messaging advantage. 

21 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

They actually have more supporters, a larger media presence and smarter people overall. But they won't fight the same way. Bringing a knife to a gun fight that you don't even want to use is a pretty shitty way of winning, especially when the other side only cares about winning, and at all costs, ethics and morals be damned. 

And this has what to do with putting out a simple message?

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If you're on a budget the economy is not good.  Your costs for many necessities are likely 30% more than they were a few years ago.  Energy and food costs are up.  Rents are up.  

The economy being "good" or "fine" or "strong" is probably irrelevant if you're not earning 30% more than you were 6 years ago.

Bad messaging is telling people they're doing fine.  I'd guess your average voter is able to save less of their paycheck than they did in 2016.  For many, it's probably not possible.  They're likely cutting back on things.  

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33 minutes ago, Kalnestk Oblast said:

I don't think that's it, and your lifetime of experience is not actually data. 

Republicans have enjoyed a plus on economic policy since Reagan. That isn't messaging, that's simple legacy. It's the same reason Dems have had a plus on things like social issues by default - even when Clinton fucked over welfare. It's branding, not messaging. That sucks, but changing the message isn't going to change that any time soon. 

Life experience is as valuable as data. We've lost that in recent years.

Reagan was not a great president when it came to the economy. Often times he was shit. But the narrative built around him had us believing that he was amazing and  also the most pro-gun president ever while 100% fought abortion (his record obviously says otherwise).

Why do you think that is? Because the people around him did a great job of lying and selling him as some figure not even close to who he was, while also not discussing how he was a total moron that needed goof proofing and talked about things like trees being worse for the environment than cars. I'm sure both Carter and Mondale were smarter than him by the time they were ten. But they sold him better. So call it marketing if messaging is for some reason a word you don't like. It's all the same at the end of the day.

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I mean sure, you can blame Obama for doing not enough here but that was 7 years ago. Biden isn't doing that at all. He is constantly taking credit for successes in the economy. Over and over again. In real simple words - lowest unemployment in 50 years, lowest black unemployment EVER. The problem is not the message. 

If the message is not breaking through than the message is part of the problem. Or maybe we have to admit the person giving it is unconvincing. 

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No, they really can't. They do not have the centralized moneyed interests that Republicans do. They do not have a massive central media empire that answers to basically one person. Nor do they have any particular interest in doing so. More importantly, your original thesis was that Democrats need to put out more simple messages, which has absolutely nothing to do with having a structural messaging advantage. 

And this has what to do with putting out a simple message?

Republican networks increasingly don't either. But they're still far better at being on the attack. Watch three hours of Fox and it's 90% attacking the left. Watch three hours of MSNBC and they're spending half the time attacking their own side.

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2 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Life experience is as valuable as data. We've lost that in recent years.

No, it really isn't. We haven't lost it; it never was true. 

2 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Reagan was not a great president when it came to the economy. Often times he was shit. But the narrative built around him had us believing that he was amazing and  also the most pro-gun president ever while 100% fought abortion (his record obviously says otherwise).

Why do you think that is? Because the people around him did a great job of lying and selling him as some figure not even close to who he was, while also not discussing how he was a total moron that needed goof proofing and talked about things like trees being worse for the environment than cars. I'm sure both Carter and Mondale were smarter than him by the time they were ten. But they sold him better. So call it marketing if messaging is for some reason a word you don't like. It's all the same at the end of the day.

But it's not a simple message which is what you said. You're all over the place on this. 

And to be clear, Reagan was significantly better for the economy than Carter was and that made a big difference. And while Carter might have been smarter than Reagan Carter's team (and inability to not micromanage) was decidedly far stupider than Reagan's was. 

2 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

If the message is not breaking through than the message is part of the problem. Or maybe we have to admit the person giving it is unconvincing. 

But again, the problem is not that the message is not simple enough. If you want to say that Biden is a shitty messenger, that's fine! Say that! If you want to say that MSNBC isn't as good as Fox is for sending out propaganda that's fine too! But don't say that the message needs to be simpler. 

2 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Republican networks increasingly don't either. But they're still far better at being on the attack. Watch three hours of Fox and it's 90% attacking the left. Watch three hours of MSNBC and they're spending half the time attacking their own side.

Sure! Which is a big advantage for Republicans, but has zero to do with simple messaging and everything to do with Murdoch. Good luck getting MSNBC to be like Fox News, but again - what does this have to do with simple messaging? 

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