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politics. interesting info.

ben (of ben & jerry's) knows how to solve the budget crisis

You may or may not know that Ben Cohen (of Ben and Jerry's) has moved on from ice cream into politics. He is the founder of the web site True Majority and in his typical lighthearted manner he has created an absolutely wonderful animation explaining how messed up the Federal government is. Ben says "Be sure to see the ending".

(requires Flash Player)

lt. col. kwiatkowski takes on the bush administration

This woman is very interesting. She worked for the Pentagon for 20 years until she became so disgusted with the lies and manipulation of the bush administration that she quit and began a crusade against the administration.

Read the L.A. Weekly article which tells her story at

You can also read the articles she has written at

george lakeoff on framing politics

This is a fascinating article that talks about the differences between liberals and conservatives from a cognitive linguistics point of view and discusses “framing” as well as having some beautiful summaries pf progressive views.

on framing re: taxes
“Conservatives have worked for decades and spent billions on their think tanks to establish their frames, create the right language, and get the language and the frames they evoke accepted. It has taken them awhile to establish the metaphors of taxation as a burden, an affliction and an unfair punishment – all of which require "relief."…

Interestingly, the wealthy benefit disproportionately from the American infrastructure. The Securities and Exchange Commission creates honest stock markets. Most of the judicial system is used for corporate law. Drugs developed with National Institutes of Health funding can be patented for private profit. Chemical companies hire scientists trained under National Science Foundation grants. Airlines hire pilots trained by the Air Force. The beef industry grazes its cattle cheaply on public lands. The more wealth you accumulate using what the dues payers have provided, the greater the debt you owe to those who have made your wealth possible. That is the logic of progressive taxation.”

on framing re: getting the swing vote
“Democrats have been subject to a major fallacy: Voters are lined up left to right according to their views on issues, the thinking goes, and Democrats can get more voters by moving to the right. But the Republicans have not been getting more voters by moving to the left. What they do is stick to their strict ideology and activate their model among swing voters who have both models. They do this by being clear and issuing consistent messages framed in terms of conservative values. The moral is this: Voters are not on a left-to-right line; there is no middle.

Here is a cognitive scientist's advice to progressive Democrats: Articulate your ideals, frame what you believe effectively, say what you believe and say it well, strongly and with moral fervor.”

a summary of the worldviews portion
There are distinct conservative and progressive worldviews. The two groups simply see the world in different ways. As a cognitive scientist, I've found in my research that these political worldviews can be understood as opposing models of an ideal family -- a strict father family and a nurturant parent family. These family models come with moral systems, which in turn provide the deep framing of all political issues.

1. The Strict Father Family: In this view, the world is a dangerous and difficult place, there is tangible evil in the world and children have to be made good. To stand up to evil, one must be morally strong -- disciplined.

2. The Nurturant Parent Family: In this view, the job of government is to care for, serve and protect the population (especially those who are helpless), to guarantee democracy (the equal sharing of political power), to promote the well-being of all and to ensure fairness for all.

See other stories by the author of that article, George Lakeoff, at


Questions or Comments? Email Corinne

Last updated 11.9.04