August 22, 2002
A Historical Document

How Newt Gingrich Uses These Techniques Ever wonder why the tone of American politics in the 1990s was so nasty? Here is part of the answer: Newt Gingrich (1990), "Language: A Key Mechanism of Control" (GOPAC)    As you know, one of the key points in the GOPAC tapes is that "language matters." In the video "We are a Majority," Language is listed as a key mechanism of control used by a majority party, along with Agenda, Rules, Attitude and Learning. As the tapes have been used in training sessions across the country and mailed to candidates we have heard a plaintive plea: "I wish I could speak like Newt."    That takes years of practice. But, we believe that you could have a significant impact on your campaign and the way you communicate if we help a little. That is why we have created this list of words and phrases.    This list is prepared so that you might have a directory of words to use in writing literature and mail, in preparing speeches, and in producing electronic media. The words and phrases are powerful. Read them. Memorize as many as possible. And remember that like any tool, these words will not...

Posted by DeLong at 07:39 AM

August 14, 2002
A Good Reason to Be a Democrat

Ted Barlow is reminded by Republican congressman Bob Barr of just why it is a good thing to be a Democrat: tedbarlow Via Atrios, via Ethel the Blog, Bob Barr has actually accused his conservative primary opponent, who has a nearly identical record to Bob Barr, of being too soft on gays.... Barr said Linder had been "taken in by the homosexual movement," and called on him to disavow the hiring agreement. A staunch conservative has been accused of being "taken in" by gay rights because he pledged not to discriminate in hiring. This is a political weakness, now. And Lindner is fighting back. He's not saying, I'm proud of my pledge not to discriminate in hiring. He's saying, well, I wasn't talking about gays. Thank God these are the guys who look for converts instead of heretics, right? Thank you, guys, for reminding me why I'm a Democrat. But, Ted, there has been progress. Someone in Bob Barr's position a quarter century ago--someone trying to win a primary by playing the prejudice card--would have been talking about how his opponent has been taken in by the African-American rights movement, wouldn't he?...

Posted by DeLong at 07:49 AM

June 24, 2002
I Wonder If He Believes What He Says...

I wonder if George W. Bush believes what he says--if he has hypnotized himself--or whether he bets that the media is just too lazy and has too short an attention span to keep fact-checking him. It's an interesting question. I never had any insight into what the media affairs people really thought. TNR Online | Stop Him Before He Lies Again (print) | Back in Houston last week, President George W. Bush again told what is gradually becoming his favorite political anecdote: "You know, when I was one time campaigning in Chicago, a reporter said, `Would you ever have a deficit?' I said, `I can't imagine it, but there would be one if we had a war, or a national emergency, or a recession.' Never did I dream we'd get the trifecta." Even we're getting a little tired of pointing out that this story is almost certainly untrue. No reporter who covered the 2000 campaign can recall Bush ever having said anything like this; and despite repeated inquiries from the media, the White House has never produced any evidence that he did. (There are numerous examples, by contrast, of candidate Bush pledging not to touch the Social Security surplus under...

Posted by DeLong at 06:22 PM

Republicans: The Stupid Party

The House Republicans seem to have mislaid their ideological position cheat sheets, and to have gotten themselves completely turned around. "No! No!" they cry. "We're the party of big government and high spending. It's those nasty Democrats who want to not-fund the important domestic social welfare state programs!" House GOP to Democrats: We're the Big Spenders Remember 1995, when newly powerful House Republicans vowed to eliminate government programs and slash federal spending? How times have changed. This week, their battle cry was... Let's start a new entitlement program for the elderly. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas, R-California, touted a Medicare prescription drug bill approved by his committee as creating a permanent "entitlement" for seniors. He contrasted the GOP measure with one introduced recently by Senate Democrats that he derided as "nothing more than a demostration project." (The Democratic program would sunset after five years so that Congress could see whether it was working.) Republicans SUPPORT permanent Rx drug benefits; Democrats DON'T," states a handout that Thomas circulated... "Inside Washington," National Journal: The Weekly on Politics and Government 34:25 (June 22, 2002), p. 1829....

Posted by DeLong at 06:09 PM

May 31, 2002
Yet Another Reason Why Paul Krugman Doesn't Like This Decade's Crop of Republicans

Heart of Cheapness So here are our priorities. Faced with a proposal that would save the lives of eight million people every year, many of them children, we balk at the cost. But when asked to give up revenue equal to twice that cost, in order to allow each of 3,300 lucky families to collect its full $16 million inheritance rather than a mere $10 million, we don't hesitate. Leave no heir behind! Which brings us back to the Bono-O'Neill tour. The rock star must have hoped that top American officials are ignorant rather than callous -- that they just don't realize what conditions are like in poor countries, and how foreign aid can make a difference. By showing Mr. O'Neill the realities of poverty and the benefits aid can bring, Bono hoped to find and kindle the spark of compassion that surely must lurk in the hearts of those who claim to be compassionate conservatives. But he still hasn't found what he's looking for....

Posted by DeLong at 05:29 PM