Why Are Democrats Terrible at Messaging?

Why Are Democrats Terrible at Messaging?

All right, let’s see what is on people’s minds. Uh, getting to the end of a very, very busy
political week. We’ll go to the phone lines at six one seven,
eight three zero 47 50. Starting today with our caller from the seven
one four area code color from seven one four. What’s your name? Where are you calling from? Hi, is that me? Yes it is. Hi David. My name is Keandre. I’m calling from the San Francisco Bay area. How are you? Good. How are you? I’m doing well. Um, it’s not a question. Uh, so I know that, uh, the right, uh, sort
of, they have this thing where, and you talked about this in your show before where it’s
sort of like these little quippy responses they can throw at ya, you know, Oh, abortion
is murder and yet we’re blind. But we in the left have to do a lot of explaining. We’ll know it’s not because science says,
you know, last begins here or there and global warming. And I was like, we have to do a lot of explaining. Do you think the left needs a sort of rebranding? And if you do, how so? Like how can we be as quickly as quick to
respond as the right and kind of have that level of just ease of understanding. I don’t know that the left needs to rebrand. I think the left needs to become better at
framing. And George Lakoff has written about this a
lot and he’s, he is actually, he has suggestions about how should the left talk about taxes,
how should the left talk about things like, you know, using the military around the world
and the context of how the Wright views patriotism and the left use patriotism. There are a lot of really good, um, thinkers
on this. I don’t think it’s, it’s an issue of rebranding. I think it’s just an issue of figuring out
better ways to talk about a lot of this stuff. And we’re even seeing it during the democratic
debates. I mean, th there the candidates are getting
better, but take for example, this question of, um, uh, should undocumented immigrants
get free healthcare. It’s like when that comes up, you need to
be ready to take control of the question rather than just answering it in a particular way. Elizabeth Warren had one good instance when
she was asked about, you know, this, should the government be able to tell you what kind
of straw to use? And she didn’t accept the question as asked. She said, hold on a second. That’s not even the issue. The issue is actually that that is almost
completely insignificant and really dealing with the issue of pollution in the environment
and the left needs to retake control of the conversations rather than to then fall into
what you are correctly pointing out are often fruitless, nuanced, necessary explanations
that don’t really appeal to people who are less avid followers of politics. [inaudible] and then another quick little
thing. Um, so also would like to point out, cause
I thought it was interesting, I was just recently talking to my uncle on my mother’s side and
he was in the military and he often said, you know, being on the left in the military
is really different because um, you can’t really speak out because you hear your military
buddies, they’re all saying no right-leaning stuff. And it’s kind of difficult being in the West
in the military because it’s kind of viewed as un-American in a way. And I thought that was interesting to point
out cause I made him, that’s what made me think about the whole rebrand and whatnot. Yes, that is interesting. And I a I appreciate you bringing it up. Keandre appreciate hearing from you. All right. Thank you. Okay, very good. Take care.

95 thoughts on “Why Are Democrats Terrible at Messaging?

  1. Don't argue with people that say abortion is murder. Instead ask them what the penalty for premeditated murder should be. Then wait for the light bulb to go on where they realize, in the words of Donald Trump, there has to be some kind of punishment

  2. This topic needs to be analyzed within the context of Noam Chomsky's book "Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media". Here is a link to a video summary of part of Chomsky's book on YouTube:

  3. Why are the younger generations so bad at punctuation?? Are they ignorant, are they lazy, did they not learn it in school? Seriously, it's a problem when you try to make sense of some of their comments. Maybe they just don't care, who knows. Posting from a phone, tablet, or laptop doesn't make it any more difficult IMO. smh

  4. Why are democrats terrible at messaging? Because democrats are republicans pretending to be progressives. They are a fake opposition group, manufactured from the establishment itself.

  5. i watched nancy nancy Pelosi take 4 sentences to say 3 sundays ago, the left needs to speak in plain English instead of this flowery SAT word way they tend to talk

  6. I think the messaging is unfair once I achieve a certain level of success and great wealth I don’t want to pay for other people’s success and wealth

  7. because democrats tries holding the same standards as our founders had, they don't try to win popularity contests, they try to address issues

  8. When I was in the military Russia was an adversary and the Republicans called anybody that didn't see their way a commie. Now they are trumpublicans and they are the commies. Well, not really, but you get my point.

  9. GOP and Trumptards are a MONOCULTURE. It's easy to feed a singularly minded culture with the same messaging every time.
    To be like that is not what liberals should be expected to be.
    The right wing "russia trolls" et all love saying "the left can't meme". Fine. The right can't think.
    I don't' think the left needs to dumb itself down enough to be a monoculture to match the strength of a unifying message the Cult of Trump are.

  10. the left has no message thus lying all the time its hard to communicate.
    P.S " The left needs to become better at framing."
    I'd say they are really good at framing and setting people up

  11. Easy answer. The Democrats suck at messaging because they're paid to suck. The Dems are Republican Light. And generally speaking, the rest of the left are too smart for their own good. Conservatives come up with easy 3 word slogans that simpletons can remember and repeat over and over. How do you turn the Green New Deal into a slogan? No need for deep and thoughtful debates about policy with conservatives. Build the wall. Lock her up. Yes We Can. Mega Maga Waga. It's all far too stupid for the left to even fathom and therefore, they dismiss it, and then suddenly the stupids are in power and now it's all this.

  12. The left is a wide range of a lot of different types of people with many ideas and a willingness to listen to that ideas. The right have just one type of message. I hate you because of you are who you are. It is not about facts, it is just I am right and you are wrong and essentially you are no good if you don't agree with me, I don't know why but I am a brain dead animal that just think that.

  13. Here's an easier answer: the left should lie.
    Trump did it in the election. His entire platform was a lie.
    Healthcare? "We're calling it "Great Healthcare".
    The wall? "Mexico will pay for it"
    Hillary? "Lock her up"?
    So maybe instead of trolling the left for their "bad" messaging, maybe come up with a solution on how to get right wingers to finish fckng high school.

  14. all the democrat candidates seem so lazy compared to trump. Playing devil's advocate,, trump constantly has campaign rallies. and the media covers every single one (even CNN does). none of the dems hold anywhere near that many rallies. some of them have an occasional short rally, and then the only other time we hear from them are at the numerous debates. they just don't seem to have the drive and energy that trump has. now his latest strategy is start regularly attending large venue sporting events. are any of the dems doing anything like that? I don't think so. we snooze, we lose. Again.

  15. Seems like the left tries to speak to intelligence, however, due to the failure of our school systems, most people are not at a level of intelligence where facts don't bounce off. Like ricochetting. Most of the populace act in more visceral terms. Gut feeling, or fear and anger. Not to mention the "only the strongest survive" mentality. Lefties, keep it simple, there is a good chance that you are talking to Joe 6 pack, not Nohm Chomsky.

  16. Public speaking classes would benefit some of the people in congress! Speak like you mean what you say. It's all about the delivery. You sound apologetic and unsure. trump speaks gibberish but he sounds and acts like it's important. lol

  17. Uh, because if the message sucks to begin with, it's hard to spin it into something good…just like polishing a turd and expecting it to look better.
    And this is coming from those who claim to be smarter than everyone else…apparently only in their own minds and reality does that even exist or make sense.
    Stay current course and speed, you're all doing great! LOL

  18. I think what the "Left" need to do is stand up for their beliefs like the Right does. The Left doesn't show any balls when it comes to supporting their ideas or following up attacks with a strong response. They try too hard to be nice to everyone and as a result, come off like little wimps. It isn't about their message, it's about their balls and showing some.

  19. Agreed……and the Dems don't need endless numbers of Prez candidates knifing each other and doing tRumps work for him in the next election. Let fRump be tRump and we can win this in 2020

  20. lol its called climate change not global warming…. global warming is just one aspect of climate change. hope you dont mansplaining to much…

  21. The Left does poor with messaging because we are on the whole more logical in our approach to issues, whereas the Right is emotional and reactionary. Now of course Republicans like to turn this around (as they always do) and attempt to style themselves as more logical and Democrats as more emotional.

    But the best evidence for Republican arguments being based in emotion is the point the caller made. Republicans are good at short, quip messages, the very nature of which cannot be logical. Short messages rely on emotion for impact. Democrats, on the other hand, attempt to explain or couch their messaging in rational thought. Look at Trump – he's 110% a creature of emotion. Angry, impulsive, gluttonous, vindictive, — there's nothing logical about Trump.

    On top of this, Republicans will take every opportunity to lash out at any Democrat who shows emotion, or attempts to message from emotion. If we try to harness emotion to spur action on Climate Change, for example, inevitably we're labeled as 'fear mongers'. But Republicans drop 'abortion is murder', and somehow that emotional hyperbole is a-okay.

    For me, one aspect of this is enlightening though. While Republicans will attempt to project onto us their disdain for their own emotional outbursts, we tend to project our own sense of trust in logic onto Republicans. We tell ourselves, "Surely, with this evidence, they will come around, or see the light." How many of us have thought this about Republicans? But they rarely ever do follow logic, nor see the light of reason.

  22. Why is Bernie so bad at running a campaign? Dude's polling average is in third place in every state except Texas, where he's in fourth.

  23. Ive been complaining about this for years. Part of it is the Left doesn't just blindly fall in line but when it comes to Independents the biggest issue is are candidates just aren't very personable.

    An older candidate for president is fine but in general we need some younger representatives that haven't been out of touch for decades and know how to talk to people

  24. Good topic, David. The actual interesting part of that call, was the truth expressed by the caller's ex-military relative.

    The Dems being bad at messaging has been known since the Tea Party pretended to break away from mainstream Republicans (even before).

    Being former Active Duty, and serving with almost all of the branches as a Professional Contractor for nearly two decades after getting out, I've seen firsthand the oppression of anyone verbally supporting leftist, liberal, or the fresher progressive thinking.

    It even persists in the many FB groups that I've been a part of for Professionals. Long after they've left the Service. Not every Servicemember supports this form of oppression, most just either become complicit by ignoring it, or via avoidance.

    At odds with that, is that we worked with a lot of former police officers who expressed the opposite positions reviled by the openly intolerant others. Fortunately as police they learn to 'grow a pair' and they are quite willing to step up to bullies.

    Interestingly, we also had groups of recent corrections officers (jail keepers for those who don't know that title) join our security forces. Many of them were mentally out there from being around crazy inmates, and fully supported ideas like those coming out of the current Trump camp.

    When I think about them, I can see them supporting the idea of turning the inmates loose on detained immigrants as a disgusting deterrent. 😮

  25. The left needs to get better at grounding their positions. And never let your right wing buddy lead the discussion just because they have whipped and convenient points. Be prepared and you lead the discussion. That’s why I like Vaush and Destiny. Destiny may have his issues but nobody can say he doesn’t substantiate his points and think deeply about them so when the time comes he can argue whatever the point is.

  26. Here's your problem,
    Democratic voters want detailed plans, airtight messaging, answers to everything under the sun, purity tests, and no flip flops or changing views.
    Republican voters want: an (R) next to the candidates name…. and that's it.

  27. Sadly the Dems are blowing it bigly , they need to pick candidate and back them because all the division makes Trumps chances better than they should be .

  28. Both Parties always overreach. Pelosi gave the Republicans message by demanding birth control in the ACA. If Warren gets the nomination and then starts arbitrarily endorsing LBGT individuals for Cabinet position just because gender ID. Or states the Fed government should pay for Trans sex change surgery. ALL will be forgiven of Trump's transgressions.

  29. If we're talking about Democratic Party politicians, they are excellent in their messaging. Their corporate donors tell them what to say, and like any parrot worth his sunflower seeds, they repeat it exactly as their masters say it.

  30. If you really want to get good answers to this question, check out The Alt-Right Playbook by Innuendo Studios. Very good video series about the tactics the modern right employs and how we on the left fail to match them.

  31. The left are intellectually driven and over explain a lot of things. The right have their short, quick talking points that sum things up in a couple of words that they repeat over and over again. Also, the Republican donors control the party to the point where varying opinions are not welcomed and anyone who believes in anything other than the talking points are stripped of funding and primaried out of office. Democrats believe in debates and wide ranging opinions. Which is a good thing but not for messaging.

  32. because the message the Democrats have.. SUCKS.
    The Democrat message is 'racist identity politics', 'censorship', 'disarmament of the law abiding', 'murder of the unwanted', 'big government control over individual liberties', and the failed ideology of 'socialism!', which no American who can read a history book would want any part of, since those are also the same things promoted by.. The Nazi Party.

  33. The left is stuck playing by an old set of rules, while the right has taken advantage of having Trump use gas lighting and bullying to win the game. Cohen taught him well with a strategy that never made him look like he lost. Something Trump is a master at still today.

  34. It's not the Left's fault, it's the people with the short attention spans and unwillingness to listener's fault.
    We could have equally quippy and unsatisfactory answers and responses as they do, but that doesn't mean they'd listen to us. That's just assisting the destruction of proper discourse and language.
    We can't stoop to their level and assume that's how we get across. We need to raise their standards.
    I think the only way to do that is education. We need to force them to pay more taxes and reform systems to benefit schools more for their own benefit.
    They need more socialism in their lives.
    (I love how triggered that last sentence will make people).

  35. I think it's largely an Overton window problem. No one is fighting for geneiunely left wing ideals anymore. Our most audacious plan in the last 30 years, ACA, was written by a Republican, and that plan was instead attacked viciously as some Socialist creed. As long as no one represent the Left, there isn't really a fight at all.

  36. They focus on minor problems a bit much.
    Think of it like this, if you order a burger with french fries, wouldn’t you eat the burger first?
    They should focus on the major issues then mention the minor ones later.

  37. It’s typically hard to argue articulacy and effectively when the facts don’t support your arguments. That is the real reason why PROGRESSIVES (not democrats) have a hard time communicating.

  38. The left needs to re-enter the Earths atmosphere if they want to get better at messaging. Its hard to win people over when your entire platform is based on intellectual abstractions instead of pragmatically rooted logic.

  39. David is RIGHT! The left needs to get better at propaganda. The right has become a master at asking bad faith questions., and being disengenous. They utter simple slogans and repeat lies over and over again in place of polify, while the left tries to come up with real policies that the right will pounce upon and pick apart. While they are doing that, they then get away with NOT having to offer any policy of their own.

  40. The premise is not true. Both Liberals and conservatives adamantly claim that their side is terrible at messaging and the other side are deviously brilliant at it. Democrats are VERY good at messaging imo. Their mantras of 'the right are racist' 'the right hate women' the right hate immigrants' and on and on have been very effective, even though it's working less and less now.

  41. The problem is that reality is complicated. It doesn’t always lend itself to bumper sticker phrases. When Liz goes into professor mode it’s because things like the economy and healthcare need detailed explanations to be correct. The right likes the simple minded phrases like ‘lock her up’ and ‘build that wall’. They have no substance, just grunts.

  42. It will always be easier to trick people than top educate them. That is why the right will always be better at branding than the left…

  43. How difficult would this statement be? We're honoring our oath to defend and protect the Constitution. Those efforts are guided by the outline the Founders provided and prior impeachment precedents. Opposition arguments are emotional smokescreens unsupported by facts. In the words of the WH's ACTING chief-of-staff 'get over it'."

  44. Democrats pick each other apart on a regular basis. While tRump shoots himSELF in the foot repeatedly, Democrats shoot each OTHER in the foot every day. : ie: Hillary knocking Elizabeth Warren the other day.

  45. Politicians have developed a terrible habit of coddling their voters. Ruffle a few feathers, and you risk throwing away your voters. It's terrible that 1) were THIS sensitive where one hard truth thrown at us drives us away in droves and 2) that it's cultivating an ever more sensitive and more stupid electorate. The right wants their voters stupid and gullible because they then don't have to put in the work of actually cultivating votes, putting in the hours to demonstrate that heshe is the right candidate. Easier to throw out some easily-chanted quip than to explain what's going on and why heshe should be elected. The left, on the other hand, disappears up its own ass worrying about plastic straws, voting rights for prisoners, free sex-change operations for trans people, steaking out positions not on the left, but on the extreme fringe of the left and then trying to explain things we should be worried about somewhere after, "are we eating too much garlic as a people?".

  46. Cold feet Crowder vs tiger momma lady g. WT he's him away from the party having fun being a shill for credit cards hating it. Change my mind!

  47. Science doesn’t tell us when a life starts or even ends, that’s a major philosophical ending. We choose to arbitrarily define when it begins and ends, and that comes from philosophy.

  48. The democrats need to back better candidates and have real plans. Being corporate shills is their problem, not messaging.

  49. It goes both ways though. When it comes to gun control, the left says guns kill, but the right explains their position.

  50. There are only two parties but at least three large ideologies.

    The Democratic Party have two clear groups within it so the messaging becomes muddled.

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