Focus Group Phrases

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“Fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here.”
“Taking the war to the terrorists.”
“He gased his own people.”
“Social Security is going broke.”
“The media is liberal.”
“They dumped babies out of incubators.”
“Environmentalists care more about trees than jobs.”
“The science on global warming is inconclusive.”
Children trapped in failing public schools.”
Out-of-control lawsuits.”
These are all phrases that have a “ring” to them. They all evoke in the mind an image that leads to certain conclusions. They all are (or were) repeated endlessly until everyone was repeating them in their sleep.
Phrases like these come out of focus groups. Focus groups probe people’s feelings and beliefs. The way this kind of focus group works is you bring together small groups of people who belong to “target demographics,” and run through several catchy groups of words and ideas, and asking “If you were told so-and-so, what would you then believe about such-and-such?”

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Iraq Caused 9/11

The Wingnutosphere is going all out to reinforce Bush’s claim that Iraq was behind 9/11. Some examples:
It’s All About 9/11: The president links Iraq and al Qaeda — and the usual suspects moan.

It was good to hear the commander-in-chief remind people that this is still the war against terror. Specifically, against Islamo-fascists who slaughtered 3000 Americans on September 11, 2001. … It is not the war for democratization. It is not the war for stability. Democratization and stability are not unimportant. … That is why we are in Iraq. … Saddam Hussein’s regime was a crucial part of that response because it was a safety net for al Qaeda. A place where terror attacks against the United States and the West were planned. A place where Saddam’s intelligence service aided and abetted al Qaeda terrorists planning operations.

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Iraqi & U.S. Trade Unionists Sign Joint Declaration on the War in Iraq

A Message From US Labor Against the War About an Historic Statement of Solidarity Between US and Iraqi Trade Unionists
[Let me quote just one key part of this statement:

The principal obstacle to peace, stability, and the reconstruction of Iraq is the occupation. The occupation is the problem, not the solution. Iraqi sovereignty and independence must be restored. The occupation must end in all its forms, including military bases and economic domination.

Here’s the “simple” version of the message we need to be pounding away at the media with: The occupation is the problem, not the solution.
Make this your mantra.
Every time you’re confronted with a “stay the course” or “you break it, you buy it” argument, repeat this back to them: The occupation is the problem, not the solution.

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Persecution

FRAMESHOP has questions that we, as Americans, must face. The persecution of Christians must be addressed! Here are just a few, go read the rest:

  • Can anyone think of a day in our national calendar when Federal and State offices are closed because of a Christian Holiday?

  • Can anyone think of one President or Vice President, or any member of the President’s cabinet who was a church-going Christian?
  • Can anyone name a Representative or Senator in Congress who has not been forced to resign once he or she became openly Christian?
  • Can anyone think of a state level representative who openly practices Christianity?
  • Can anyone think of a state or federal judge who has been appointed to the bench or elected despite being Christian?
  • Can anyone think of any U.S. diplomats who retained their jobs once it was discovered that they were raised Christian?
  • Can anyone think of any Christian symbols that are mounted and celebrated in our nation’s capital on an annual basis?
  • Can anyone think of a single town in America where it is safe to attend a Christian church?
  • Can anyone think of a single place in America where Christian Churches have not been the subject of regular abuse from the public?
  • Can anyone think of a single U.S. University that does not have a quota system to guard against the hiring of too many Christian professors?
    [. . .] And if there’s any time left over, try changing the word “Christian” to the word “Muslim” in a few of the questions and see if the answers are any different.

  • Bad In Iraq

    Mary links to Chris Albritton,

    As Chris notes, it’s hard to reconcile the happy talk of the press releases with the reality they experience every day.
    News flash: Iraq is a disaster. I’ve been back one day, and the airport road was the worst I’ve ever seen it. We had to go around a fire-fight between mujahideen and Americans while Iraqi forces sat in the shade of date palms on the side of the road, their rifles resting across their laps. My driver pointed to a group of men in a white pickup next to me. “They are mujahideen,” he said. “They are watching the Americans.” Indeed, they were, and so intently that they paid no attention to me in the car next to them. We detoured around two possible car bombs that had been cordoned off while Iraqis cautiously approached.

    The authorities say Iraq is doing great. So who should Chris believe, Rumsfeld or his own lying eyes?

    Read Chris’ entire post from Iraq.

    Questioning Common Wisdom

    larre over at The Left Coaster provides a common sense retort to the conventional wisdom:

    “Stay the course” in Iraq and the civil war we have ignited will go on as long as we are there. Pull out, and civil war will continue anyway. I see no third way. Not in a world where reality has a nasty habit of intruding on imperial fantasies.
    Isn’t it time to acknowledge that precisely because there are no good alternatives, the United States should simply quit Iraq? Now?

    A blunt and accurate truth that no Democrat dares speak:

    Here’s another question about the common wisdom. Strictly from the standpoint of our own national interest, weren’t we far better off with a strong-man like Hussein controlling the intractable factions of Iraq and providing a counter-weight to the greater threat of Iran — as Bush’s father implicitly acknowledged by refusing to go on to Baghdad when he brought to an end the Gulf War and opted for controlling from “no fly zones” two thirds of Iraq?

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