Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a common ailment that causes swelling of the nine tendons in your carpal tunnel, causing pain, numbness, and discomfort in your hand and fingers. Carpal Tunnel Brain Syndrome involves repetitious attacks on your frontal lobe, inducing emotional and ill-advised decision-making.
We have been tied to the theory that learning tedious subjects like mathematics, your alphabet, or words needs to be tied to drills or repetition. But those with something to sell use such tactics as well.
Marketers through music and commercials, even before radio and television, have known this and used it, so much so that the DVD is our savior. Do contemporary youngsters still chant or sing the catchy oft-repeated jingles for cereal or the latest game? Perhaps they are more apt to sing a ditty from the latest Lady Gaga song which repeats emotional wants:
I want your drama…
I want your leather-studded kiss …
I want your horror…
I want your Psycho
Repetition is rampant throughout our culture but it becomes more notable – that is — if you are paying attention — when there are elections, especially national elections like the presidential race. Both Democrats and Republicans are conscious of its value but Republicans are masters.
In fact, Frank Luntz is the GOP’s master Wordmeister whose advice is valued and heeded by all GOP candidates. His simple rule is to repeat a phrase until you are sick of hearing it yourself and only then do people hear it for the first time. Utilizing figurative language intelligence, you might say: “If you don’t repeat, you can’t compete.”
Mitt Romney and Barack Obama know that the key to winning voter approval and seeming friendly to business is to ally themselves with “small business.” As a result both repeated the phrase “small business” over 25 times during last Wednesday’s debate.
Utilizing Frank Luntz’s advice during the midterm elections in 2010, Republican candidates for federal and state offices endlessly repeated the word “jobs” relative to promised legislation and “job-killer,” attaching the latter to anything Democratic, especially “The Affordable Care Act,” which Republicans call “Obamacare,” – all to advance their agenda. Sadly the large crop of Republicans who won, both at the state and federal level, spent their time legislating against unions, attacking women’s issues, and helping business. Jobs were actually forgotten.
In the presidential campaign, the word “jobs” and the phrase “job-killing” are repetitiously prominent in Romney’s bag of words. Of course the former is to express the candidates total commitment to jobs and the latter to label anything Democrat with killing jobs, like Dodd-Frank Wall Street regulation and especially “Obamacare.” Repetitious wordplay is also used to confuse. Lately Romney has been repeating the term “trickle-down government” to confuse and obfuscate the term Democrats use for supply-side economics, “trickle-down economics,” characterizing Republicans always calling to pass more tax breaks for the rich so it will trickle down to us (the peons) – which it never does.
Some $250 million dollars was spent by conservatives to demonize the Affordable Care Act. Even yet we hear the repetitious “government takeover of healthcare.” Never mind that that is utterly ridiculous and inane. “No Washington politician or bureaucrat should stand between you and your doctor” is another repeated line that in the short term has worked until experience and reason tell people otherwise.
Republicans, being the voice of big business, have an agenda on climate change as well. Frank Luntz has a selection of words you associate with climate change such as “unsettled science” to spur confusion, suggesting that global warming is not settled. George W Bush was great at using the Luntz script that sought to delay environmental action, repeating “technology” and “technology breakthroughs” to promote long-term solutions (actually delay any action). Rhetorically Republicans fake interest in a cogent energy policy but will never act.
Luntz, who tests words with people for their emotional appeal, is also known for “death tax” rather than “inheritance tax” and “energy exploration” for “oil drilling.” Don’t say “government spending,” he says, call it “waste, or don’t ever say you’re willing to “compromise,” as Republicans have demonstrated in Congress.
Language intelligence is vital in the global culture, but especially in the American culture, not just for those who use it for a vested interest. It is important for all of us who are exposed to its persuasion in getting us to buy things, subscribe to ideas, or change our life styles.
If you are not armed with the knowledge anecdote, the neurons in your brain will swell from repetitive transcranial nonsensical stimulation, leading to poor choices (like George W. Bush, for example) for political candidates, choices which may have a long-term impact on your health and well-being.
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