Friday, April 13, 2007
Death to the talking point...
There are talking points on everything. On why the change to the Patriot Act which allowed prosecutors to be appointed without Senatorial review ought to be kept. On the weaknesses of the various prosecutors who were pushed out, and the strengths of their proposed replacements. On Clinton firing the prosecutors when he came to office... it just goes on and on and on. In fact the Justice Department was not bashful about this either. Document after document is prominently noted as being talking points. Draft talking points, Talking points as amended, talking points for approval, talking point talking point talking point.
One is left to wonder what sort of implosion would occur if one of the sheep were cut from the herd and went off message for a news cycle.
What I'm about to say is the equivalent of me farting the wrong way down a wind tunnel. It truly makes zero difference, but it does make me feel better.
Those who rely upon talking points to further an argument should be recognized as being intellectually lazy, and their opinions ought to hold considerably less weight than a person who makes their argument using their own logic. Using talking points in fact is intrinsically dishonest. The opinion being expressed is not original. A political party may as well manufacture an army of robots which can be programmed on a daily basis to simply parrot the talking point generated by the opinion leader. It is the equivalent of drinking the koolaid dished out by the cult leader. The followers original thoughts and feelings are suppressed in order to mindlessly echo that which the leader wishes...
This is not to say that merely agreeing a talking point is somehow dishonest. But to mindlessly parrot the talking point as your own opinion is. There are talking points from the left that I agree with. But I don't express those points word for word as I hear them and attempt to make it appear as though I'm expressing some great truth.
I find it troubling that the people in charge of the Justice Department can not seem to carry on a cogent conversation about the prosecutor firings without having a list of talking points to fall back on. Can you imagine the talking points being downloaded into Alberto Gonzales cpu as he prepares for his upcoming testimony? No wonder he has to cram so hard... he has to retain a veritable tome of talking points!
So what are we to do about this? I say we point out the talking points talkers and ridicule them for being the mindless Borg they are. Dare them to go off script and see if they can make sense expressing their own logic. I would like the term talking point to be used much the same as communist or nazi is. "You are using a talking point! Why don't you tell us what YOU think?"
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