Saturday, October 1, 2011

Statement Analysis and Politics

Question:   Can you do analysis without political sway?

Former President Bill Clinton has always 
been generous to us with regard to samples for analysis.  Here, he continues.  As to our question, only you can answer for yourself.  Regardless of your analysis, it is likely that 50% will be pleased; and 50% will object; some will be happy, and some will be not.  You will be accused by some, of being partial.  Others, due to personal persuasion, will dismiss analysis.  Although based upon commenting, readership is more female than male, the overwhelming number of comments regarding Amanda Knox, for example, are male.  Of these, few are happy with the analysis. 

Yet, this is the struggle of analysis for some, and leaves them with an uncomfortable pressure:

The same analysis that proved Casey Anthony is lying,  which they heartily agreed with, seeing both the means and the end; is the same analysis that proves their personal favorite killer to be also lying. 

What to do?

But, at least it is with politics that no matter what your personal viewpoint or party affiliation, your politicians will provide you with lots of rich sample of which to analyze. 

I promise. 

Bill Clinton wants more credit

Bill Clinton speaks during a dedication ceremony for the Clinton Presidential Park Bridge. | AP Photo
Earlier Friday, the former president attended a bridge dedication at his presidential library. | AP PhotoClose
Bill Clinton thinks he deserves more credit for reforming welfare and balancing the budget.
I go crazy every time I read the conventional wisdom,” he said Friday night at his presidential library in Little Rock, Ark. “So part of the Republican narrative is that I was saved from myself by the election of the Republican Congress [in 1994] that forced me to do welfare reform and ‘made the balanced budget possible.’”
One of the more difficult aspects of analysis is learning where a subject has entered into the language of another; and where the subject speaks for himself.  This is most often seen when a husband or wife enters into the language of the spouse.  Here, the subject calls it "the" conventional wisdom, rather than "a" or without an article.  This is an indication that the topic (conventional wisdom) has already been introduced.  Here the analyst must seek to know if these are embedded admissions of what took place, although it may not be intentional by the subject, or if he is quoting someone else.  Note that he credits "the" conventional wisdom with these statements, rather than specifying anyone in particular.  This should cause the analyst to work from the premise that there may be an embedded admission within the subject's words. 

Clinton said reporters and commentators “keep saying this, overlooking all relevant facts. We recognize that not all quotes are present; but exerts from a long speech.  Here, he identifies, perhaps, the identity of "the" conventional wisdom:  "reporters and commentators"; yet no one individual is quoted.  We are looking to see if the language is the subject's, or another's.  
The 42nd president said Arkansas had been a test case for reform during his governorship. At the federal level, he said 43 states received federal waivers to implement welfare reform before the GOP-controlled House passed the final bill.
And yet I kept reading how this was ‘a Republican idea,’ just because President Reagan had a good story about a welfare queen and a Cadillac who didn’t exist, Clinton said.
Note that a sentence which begins with "And yet" is likely missing information.  He now says that this was something he "kept reading" (not "read") which suggests sensitivity of the action (as it was ongoing).  Note that he says "President Reagan had a good story" follows the noted "because" (which tells us why; not what).  He asserts that "a" welfare queen with a Cadillac did not exist"; not "the welfare queen" which would specify a particular "welfare queen".  This should cause the analyst to question if the subject is making up this "story" that he attributes to another.  Those who have studied liars know that when someone is able to shake his finger at the camera, (President Clinton, baseball players before Congress) and boldly lie, are not going to be reliable at any time in their lives.  Each statement must be viewed for veracity within itself, but the subject, himself, is a liar, something learned early in childhood and practiced, reflectively, for a lifetime unless a crisis experience takes place in which the subject seeks change through understanding.  
The subject may be telling the truth, but alertness should always be present.   
The feisty comments came during 20 minutes of unscripted remarks that immediately followed a one-hour panel discussion commemorating the 20th anniversary of Clinton announcing his run for president in front of the nearby state house. They showcased a Clinton determined to present himself as a transformational figure.
Six senior aides from the 1992 campaign had waxed nostalgic, praising their old boss for revitalizing the Democratic Party and changing the way campaigns are run.
When Clinton took the microphone, he riffed on the importance of offering voters a compelling story line.
I’m telling you this to point out that we need a coherent narrative,” he said. “The No. 1 rule of effective politics, especially if the people you’re running against have a simple narrative — that government is always the problem, there is no such thing as a good tax or a bad tax cut, there’s no such thing as a good program or a bad program cut, no such thing as a good regulation or a bad deregulation — if you’re going to fight that, your counter has to be rooted in the lives of other people.
This should be considered personal and sensitive to the subject. Note the comparison of "coherent" narrative to "simple" narrative as a change of language.  A change of language should represent a change in perceived reality.

"Other" people are noted. 
His speech included an attack on the tea party governing philosophy.
We need to understand that one of the things that tends to tilt things toward the Republicans’ anti-government narrative is our country was born out of a suspicion of government,” Clinton said. “King George’s government was not accountable to us. That’s what the Boston tea party was about. When the tea party started out, at least they were against unaccountable behavior from top to bottom. Then it morphed into something different. If you want to go against that grain, you’ve got to tell people you understand it’s a privilege and a responsibility to spend their tax money, but there’s some things we have to do together. And that’s what the purpose of government is, to do the things that we have to do together that we can’t do on our own.”
If we can make that choice credible,” he added, “then our candidates — starting with the president — and our principles will be fine.”
Among friends and longtime supporters, the 65-year-old looked at ease and spoke lovingly about the aides and Arkansans who helped him get to the White House two decades ago.
We were looking at total meltdown about a week before New Hampshire,” Clinton recalled, praising James Carville for the way he handled the blow-up over the Vietnam letter.

“He likes to act crazy because it helps him get speaking gigs,” Clinton joked. “He figures if he goes around acting like he needs a rabies shot that more and more people will want to see him.”
Clinton said commentators struggled to deal with him when he stepped onto the national stage because he did not fit easily into one easily defined category.
On the issue of race, he bragged about having the highest percentage of African-Americans on his professional staff of any state attorney general in America in the late 1970s.
Panelist Vernon Jordan, the civil rights icon who chaired Clinton’s presidential transition in 1992, heaped on praise.
“The party was lost at sea,” Jordan said. “And Bill Clinton came in 1991, and he was to the Democratic Party what Rosa Parks was to the civil rights movement. … He was to the Democratic Party what Martin Luther King became to the movement. It was change. It was different. It was fresh. It was young. It was also experience. He’d been governor a long time. It was renaissance time in the Democratic party, and a lot of the older Democrats had to be brought around.”

In any statement, note the names and note the order in which the names appear to show priority for the subject. 
Al From, the founder of the Democratic Leadership Council, marveled at Clinton’s ability to give the same charter school speech to two different groups with opposite interests and get them to see him as on the right side of the issue.
Frank Greer, media consultant to the 1992 Clinton campaign, said it took someone from the South to bridge the gap between working whites and African-Americans.
“He understood it because he had lived it,” he said. “It was growing up in the South.”
Former Little Rock Mayor Lottie Shackleford, deputy campaign manager in 1992, talked about how Clinton was a party outsider who did not initially attract many movers and shakers.
“It was true grass roots,” she said.
Carville talked about the innovations in the 1992 Clinton campaign. Every campaign has a war room now. The “it’s the economy, stupid” mantra has long become cliché. The candidate bus tour that seemed somewhat novel when Clinton did it is now standard practice for national candidates.
“The campaign was not just a different way,” Carville said, “but it was sort of a cultural transformation in American politics.”

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