Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Cracking the Code, Conclusion

In the concluding chapter Hartmann pulls the foregoing together to make the case that conservatives have been more successful because they focus on the benefits one accrues in their story. Liberals, on the other hand, focused more on the policy features and missed the benefits framing boat. Polls actually showed that many conservative voters actually preferred liberal policy features but went instead with the conservative story that fed parts of their identities.

Hence liberals need to promote their on story of benefits, that of We the People. It appeals to our role as citizens in something larger than just ourselves. But again, it must also reach down to personal benefits of safety and security, like that our taxes pay for police and fire protection, providing safe food, water and working conditions, schools to provide for better work opportunities and healthcare when we are sick. It's a story of how the government enacts all of this for we the people, for it represents us and our best interests. It's a story of how we all fit together, from our lowest individual needs to the highest, and how that fits together with societal needs, from the local community to our nation and beyond. It's the story of democracy, and if we don't tell it well the conservatives will win the day with oligarchy and alienating us from ourselves and our country. It is each of our responsibilities to tell this story, so as Hartmann often says, and with which he closes the book: “Democracy begins with you. Tag – you're it!”

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