Explaining to a 6 Year Old

One of the great things about political blogs is that often times you will come across comments that themselves produce thoughts, ideas, and new approaches to old arguments that will outshine the parent post or article.

And that is exactly what I saw over at one of my favorite haunts; The Moderate Voice.

It came in reply to a post about someone who was put back on the fence after being an Obama supporter through the primaries.  Now, I have no desire to disparage Polimom’s post; people have the right to change their minds, and I will not go after someone who reconsiders a decision for valid reasons.  But Elrod’s first comment I think hits a home run that needs to get greater steam in the next two months:

With each new day, the focal point, and the advocacy arguments will focus on the low information voter which means that the debate must shift to accomodate them.  One of the reasons why Republicans are so good at winning elections is that they know how to market their brand to the low information voter (note: when I say low information voter, I don’t mean stupid, I merely mean someone who spends little time focusing on politics and current affairs).  They know how to strike the right chords, what strings to pull, what kinds of ads to drop that will have the maximum impact on people who don’t spend their entire day cramming econ knowledge in their heads, or forcing themselves to learn about other cultures because we are in a war in a foreign land and it might be helpful to understand what life is like for people over there.
That’s the beauty of Elrod’s argument; it appeals to all.  It doesn’t require knowledge of what Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac do (which, ahem, apparently some of the actual candidates in the race don’t quite understand), nor does it require the target audience to have an in depth understanding of the relationship between Sunnis and Shia.  It goes straight to how we all move about our day, how we decide what to have for lunch, is it good for us, or will it taste good?  Should we invest a little money in online trading?
Should we buy the Hummer now that we finally managed to pull together enough money to afford one, or should we concede that that one dream has passed us by and it’s time to go for the hybrid?
McCain is wreckless and rash, Obama is prudent and deliberate.  It’s as simple as that, and if the target audience wants to know more, than you can get into the policy specifics and the history of each candidate.  But until then, it’s as simple as McCain would be a major and risky gamble with your vote; Obama would be a safe investment of your vote.

4 Responses to “Explaining to a 6 Year Old”

  1. Peter says:

    careful and deliberative … and bad choices.

    and maybe when you stop treating voters as six-year olds, you might attract some.

  2. I dunno, Peter. Republicans have been treating voters like six year olds for some time now and it’s working BRILLIANTLY for them.

  3. Kathy says:

    Here’s another point to consider, Peter. You’re not guaranteed to make good choices every single time just because you are careful and deliberative. Sometimes you will be careful and deliberative and make the wrong choice, or a bad choice. But if you are reckless and shoot from the hip; if you make decisions and choices impulsively with no thought to the consequences, you are guaranteed NOT to make good choices, EVER.

    I am voting for the guy who thinks before deciding and is willing to change his mind when necessary, over the guy who acts on impulse and cannot tolerate criticism or disagreement.

  4. marc says:

    Not necessarily. A given person will make better decisions when he/she goes about the process methodically. But gunslinger girl M might well make better decisions than methodical man B if she’s got more on the ball than the other fellow. This is particularly true of B is bound to a party agenda that forces him to act against the best interests of the country, no matter how long and hard he thinks about the problems of the moment.

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