Monday, April 04, 2011

Another way you know they're not on your side

In covering the nationwide rallies by unions and union supporters today, AP had this to say:
Labor unions want to frame the debate as a civil rights issue, which could draw sympathy to public workers being blamed for busting state budgets with generous pensions.
Yeah, that's it: They're just trying to "frame the issue" in order to "draw sympathy." It's like, y'know, sneaky advertising 'n' stuff. So watch out for those unions! They're just trying to "draw sympathy" so you forget that they're "busting budgets" with their "generous pensions."

When was the last time you heard, say, a corporate CEO or some right-winger or some TPer described as trying to "frame the issue?" I wonder if you ever have. Because in the dreamworld of the media, they don't. Instead, they "make arguments." Indeed, the very same article demonstrates the point:
Walker has argued that collective bargaining is a budget issue. On Friday, he signed into law a bill the strips nearly all collective bargaining benefits from most public workers, arguing the move will give local governments flexibility in making budget cuts needed to close the state's $3.6 billion deficit.
See? Walkalloveryou doesn't try to "frame the issue." Oh, no, not him. Instead, he "makes arguments" about "budget issues" and "flexibility" and "the deficit" - all of which go unchallenged.

About the only thing on which Rush Limbaugh and I agree is that "words have meanings." And the things they imply can express as much as what they actually say.

Footnote A: Something else I found interesting is that both the AP and the New York Times referred to Walkalloveryou having "signed into law" the bill stripping away collective bargaining rights from most Wisconsin public employees without finding space to mention that its implementation has been blocked by court order and so won't go into effect for months, if ever.

Footnote B: To be truly accurate, you have to say that words convey meanings. Words in and of themselves are meaningless; the meaning exists in the minds of the speaker and hearer. The words themselves are just collections of sounds (or, in the case of writing, shapes) that when spoken (or written) in certain patterns and sequences are used to symbolize certain mental concepts so the hearer can know what of those concepts are in the mind of the speaker. All of which I mention just for fun and as a flashback to my interest in clinical psychology and linguistics.

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