I Don’t Think This Will Work

16Apr10

As much as I love the shots at twisted genius Frank Luntz, I’m not feeling this ad:

The problem is, who is Frank Luntz? He’s the premier practitioner of my field of study, political communication. He worked with Newt Gingrich on the “Contract with America” that led to the sweeping GOP victory in 1994. He occasionally appears on Fox News, where he runs focus groups that translucently are Republican market study campaigns (Hannity and O’Reilly deliver the product. Not Beck, he has his own way of political entertainment).

I’d argue that Democrats have already tried demonizing conservative media figures; Olbermann’s hour is nearly devoted to it. And yet, it doesn’t seem to have that much of an impact; the GOP is still poised to gain seats, and you never hear Fox run fact checks and corrections on their stars’ inaccurate and exaggerated rhetoric. Sarah Palin made 12 million dollars since her time as governor. There is no grand referee that can put a stop to lies in politics; one might argue it used to be our media, but by and large, the media has just become another product for consumption, catered to niche markets, their constituents’ assumptions unquestioned.

And so I don’t think much will come from attacking Luntz. The GOPs message discipline (use of talking points) is already obvious–save for the occasional Collins or Brown. Right wing media’s lies have been exposed. Frankly, people don’t seem to mind too much. It’s depressing, and even more depressing when you consider Luntz comes out and says his words work because America is under-educated.

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