Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Real Talking Points -- All Aboard!

Over at Talking Points Memo, Josh surely has the right idea:

Shouldn't his critics just be saying over and over: level with the public? Tell
them what you want to do to Social Security.

So, bloggers, let's get on it.

By not demanding that the President put his cards on the table, aren't we taking the bait on this one? Anyone remember Wiley E. Coyote on the branch of the tree, sawing away? All our constant and detailed deconstruction of "privatization" is just giving the President a roadmap to success.

Here's a thought. How 'bout we shut up, and start demanding that Mr. Bush level with us. What is he proposing, exactly? Stop playing games, Mr. President, with our hopes and fears for the future, and come clean.

Here's an oratorical hint: imply that the President is hiding something (he is). Words/phrases that we should use: come clean, level, tell the truth, stop hiding, playing games, whack-a-mole, secret, hidden, agenda, deceptive, scare tactics, etc.

Our frame, if you will, is that this is another instance of the President taking a position which proves controversial, then reverses himself in face of political pressure. The flip-flopper. The poll-follower. (Back story: Providing health insurance to needy Texas children, nation building, stretching military too thin, Department of Homeland Security, 9/11 Commission, Condi Rice's testimony, finding bin Ladn, will seek UN vote, deficits are good/bad, etc.) Bush is weak, without principles, inept, hapless, utterly without a clue.

Surely this would be a great deal more fun than another 2,500 words on why the latest revisions from the Association of American Acturarials show that the trust fund won't hit the cashflow breakeven point 'til 2024, and not as we had thought 2018? We are totally bogged down in fighting a plan that the President can disavow, and can use to pivot to something else that he has clearly indicated he will pursue: raising taxes on the poor (which he calls "tax reform," a phrase we should be allergic to).

So from here on out, no more 'splainin' about how horrible the President's plan is. Mission accomplished, folks. Let's have a single meme out there on SS: Tell us the truth Mr. President: What are you proposing?

Let's use the power of the blogosphere to focus our fire on a single thing, and maybe we can move the debate (and our society) forward a bit.

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