Just a quick reference to two interesting articles about whether liberal candidates can win the mid-term election. Both address and debunk the idea that liberal politicians should move further right in order to court swing voters or "moderates".
The first, from a political perspective:
Arianna Huffington's blog D.C. Fear Face-Off: It's GOP's Fear of Reality vs. Dem's Fear of Perception I heard Huffington the other night on the NPR's On Point and was amazed as a former ESL teacher how eloquent her English is, and how fiercely correct her appraisals are. Along with many other Democrats, I am both exhausted by the Democrats' naivte when it comes to creating perception and their inability to shape the public debate that is going on in this country.
The second is from a linguistic perspective:
Also from the Huffington Post is a blog by the linguist George Lakoff called Biconceptualism in which he debunks the myth of the "centrist" or "moderate" voter and portrays a more compelling and complex view of how people create their world-views and how this effects their voting patterns. Obviously understanding how people create their world-views is part and parcel to connecting with them and building political capital (oy). It never ceases to amaze me that life always seems to come back to English Composition 101: Know Your Audience. I will now be accepting flowers and gifts from the former students of U of M English 101x.