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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Bringing up the subject of Politics - do it, and do it nicely

Opra made a plug for Daniel Kurtsman's books: HOW TO WIN AN ARGUMENT WITH A CONSERVATIVE, and HOW TO WIN AN ARGUMENT WITH A LIBERAL.

* Fight with humor. Daniel says. "If you can make them laugh, they'll be much more likely to listen to the next thing you have to say." Jon Stewart is a good example of someone who uses humor in an argument.

* Ask a rhetorical question. Asked gently, this can put them on the spot while giving them an invitation to join the conversation. "When you can put someone on the defensive like that", Daniel says, "that's how you can begin to seize control of the debate and get the upper hand."

* Keep it simple. "This is one area where I feel the Obama campaign has been pretty effective," Daniel says. "Their core message, at this point, is: 'John McCain is more of the same.' It's easy to latch onto; it's not a 10-point plan." A long winded, nuanced, complex argument is a guaranteed ticket to disaster, Daniel says. No one is certain What the McCain core message is -- successfully converted prisoner of war into "war hero"? Maverick?

* Don't become overly emotional. Daniel says if your goal is to try to be persuasive, set aside some of the emotion to move toward the argument. You also need to "release" it--don't stay upset or aroused, people will want to flee.

* Don't become conspiratorial. Avoid the common tendency to discuss conspiracies about the candidates. "There are so many good arguments to seize on, why go toward those kinds of crazy arguments that will discredit you?" Daniel asks.
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