Reality Based Language

Greetings from Berlin. As I sat down for breakfast with Tim this morning, the term faith-based community some how came up. Naturally, this was followed by the term reality-based community. He loved the both and laughed through much of the meal.

As he read through the wikipedia entries for both these terms, I started talking about Frank Luntz.. do you know that name? Well you should, because he is and was a key figure in manipulating YOU. (by you im talking mostly to Americans right now)

Yes all those terms you think nothing of these days… insurgent, death tax, culture of life… these are the types of terms this man helped make part of the public conversation on issues. His specialty is taking something, especially a government policy or a proposed policy that would normally upset you and changing it into a name that makes you feel safe and comfortable. Examples: Logging = Healthy Forests Iniative, Drilling for Oil = Responsible Energy Exploration, and apparently Global Warming = Climate Change.

As I sat there going over the art of manipulating the truth and people, that familiar frustration came back. Did this really happen? Did this guy, working for the government, really take words that describe bad practices and policies and twist them into something more acceptable? Even now, it is hard to believe, but he did.

Here’s a link to a video illustrating some of his work.

Many have praised Luntz for his ability to do this. I consider him an accessory to mass murder and various other crimes.