Why do we listen to rhetoric?

So, I’m sitting here writing a blog about how we allow politicians to scare us out of making smart choices.
…or at least I’m trying to.  I have blogger’s block, so in the background I have the old speeches of Ronald Reagan playing for inspiration.  He says:

“First you decide that the doctor can only have so many patients that are equally divided among the doctors, but then the doctors aren’t equally divided geographically.  So the government says to him ‘You can’t live in that town; that town already has enough doctors.’ and it’s just a short jump for the government to determine where he must live.”

I find this utterly ridiculous, so I do my best Ronald Reagan impersonation to my wife on the couch:

“First you allow the government to hire doctors, and then it’s a short jump for this country to be a Communist State.”

Big laughs all around, but in the time that it took me to say that the real Reagan gears up again:

“Once you establish the precedent that the government determines a man’s working place and working methods, from here it’s a short step to the rest of Socialism.”

NO!  I was kidding!!  That was a joke!!!  Clearly this is a LOL kind of statement, right?!?  There are many, MANY steps between the government hiring doctors to work in certain locations and becoming a Socialist Nation!!!  How did people take these kinds of statements seriously?

Okay, look…I know a lot of my readers (family members and friends) disagree with my politics, but if there is one thing that I can convince you to do it’s this:

Whenever someone says to you “If you allow X, then it’s a short jump to Y.” question it.  This is a clear short-cut to avoid logic.  If  their logic was sound, they could follow the reasoning step by step.  Since they are avoiding these steps it’s probably a sign that they know that what they are saying is not true.

Glenn Beck does this all the time…Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin less often so but guilty…even Obama falls in this trap on occasion.  Next time you hear any of these people saying “it’s just a short step” question what they mean by it.  This phrase is always…always…used to pull the wool over your eyes.

Once you allow a pundit to convince you of an argument without logic, then it’s just a short step to being a mindless zombie that will believe anything that you’re told.

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2 Responses to Why do we listen to rhetoric?

  1. brian says:

    This post is full of WIN!

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