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Showing posts from October, 2006

How opinions change

As the Foley sex-page scandal works its way through the national consciousness, we are beginning to see the opinion expressed that it is all quite unfortunate that this scandal is taking attention away from the "important issues", the War in Iraq, the National Intelligence Estimate, Bob Woodward's book, the torture and warrantless wiretapping, the slow pace of Katrina recovery.

Yet, it appears that it is against the war in Iraq that the public has turned, and that turning includes turning toward electing Democrats to Congress.

All this turning has apparently gone on with fairly weak Democratic Party messaging against the war and the Administration, and without a public anti-war movement with a strong voice.

It raises the question of how do people change their minds in this political and information environment.

Maybe active argumentation, and the political rhetoric of persuasion, does not work anymore? The powerful speech against the war made by a politician, the leaflet d…