Listen to the Wise Woman

Molly Ivins is a Wise Woman. The following excerpted from here.
Luntz described his methods with appealing pride. His job is to “set the context” and “frame the debate,” which he learns how to do through focus groups, polls and dial sessions. But he kept drawing the line at the word “manipulation.” No, no, he doesn’t manipulate people, he insisted, he merely gives them a context for the message, he merely discovers what it is they want to hear and how best to say it to them.
I’m listening to all this because this is what the shrewdies in Washington pay attention to – you can’t hardly be a political writer anymore without sources on linguistics, semiotics, message control and all this good business. It dates you something awful if you do old-fashioned stuff, like call politicos to find out how it’s going.
Luntz has discovered that the 4 percent of Americans who still have not made up their minds about this election to tend to be working women, younger, new mothers and fairly low-wage earners. I was pleased to hear Luntz explain how he’d uncovered the most interesting thing about these women.

“You have to empathize,” he said. “The very first thing you have to do, it’s not about issues, it’s about empathy. They have to know that you care, that you understand them, that you understand the frustrations.” Say a candidate of his – say George W. Bush – is at a town hall meeting. He’d say, “‘Now I want to talk to the ladies in the room’ … ‘the women in the room’ is how I would put it … and you say: ‘Well, I’m gonna throw this out. I want you tell me if I’m right or not. Ladies here, I’d say that your lack of free time is one of the greatest challenges.’ And they’ll all sit there, and they’ll raise their hands, and they’ll all nod yes. At that moment, you have bonded with those women.”
Which is all well and good, except then I’m trying to envision what George W. Bush says to them next. The National Women’s Law Center released a study in April, called “Slip Sliding Away,” on the erosion of women’s rights.

All in all, it’s kind of hard to see how Bush could convince “the ladies” that he has helped take stress out of their lives. Unless, of course, the lady is married to a guy who makes $1 million a year – then she’d have $92,000 extra a year to spend from the Bush tax cuts.
Go and read about how the quality of life for women is “Slip Sliding Away,” thanks to the manipulation of the Bush administration.
Maybe we need to start a list of “BlogWomen Against Women” and put Andrea Mitchell, aka Mrs. Allen Greenspan, with her BusyBusyBusy at the top of the list. (Thanks to the Busy reference from Mr. Bill in the Comments at Brooke Biggs’ site.)

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