Thursday, April 23, 2009

Persuasion, Marketing, and Mark Shannon on "Ron Paulies"

Oklahoma City talk show host Mark Shannon has had enough of the "Ron Paulies" - read below for his post today.

Black-Pauled

When I woke up Wednesday morning, I had nothing I felt strong enough to write about, (as you may have noticed,) so rather than forcing something, I just left it blank.

Nothing like a couple hours on the air to remedy that problem.

Here's the long and short of it: I've had it with the "Paulies." Those people who claim to be supporters of Ron Paul and the Constitution, but who have no common sense, understanding of how to present themselves or represent their candidate or their beliefs.

Never mind that I happen to be the guy who does the show, the "Paulies" have managed to alienate the host of one of the only call-in shows in the city that actually deals with political topics. They've also managed to do it to every major talk show host in the country from Beck to Limbaugh to Hannity.

They get screened out from the national shows most of the time, and now have managed to be annoying enough that they will be screened out or dumped by the digital time-delay we utilize normally for profanity.

Regardless of your political positions, if you are going to win in politics, which is a "people" business, you've got to be able to communicate with and work with all kinds of people.

"Paulies" don't get it. They think they've got the only "CONSTITUTIONAL" position on every issue, and are just sure the light will all come on for the rest of us ("not really") conservatives in this country.

They heckled Tom Coburn at the Republican State convention, a real TURN OFF. They will talk you into a corner ranting about the FEDERAL RESERVE and how taxation is slavery and one or two other of their limited points, another TURN OFF.

Call your internet radio stations with the other fringe members and have a ball sounding brilliant to each other because no one else wants to listen to you.

If he has any connection to these guys, Randy Brogdon, candidate for Governor, would do well to distance himself from these guys, because he's going to have enough difficulties to overcome trying to defeat a very popular Mary Fallin without having these immature and political novices representing him in any way.

Good job guys. You've slit your own throat.....again.


Although I theoretically line up with quite a few of the positions the "Ron Paulies" hold, I must confess, I agree with Mark on much of what he said. Let me elaborate, by paragraph.
Regardless of your political positions, if you are going to win in politics, which is a "people" business, you've got to be able to communicate with and work with all kinds of people.
This is key. One of the major downfalls for the "Ron Paulies" is their nearly across-the-board inability to communicate with those who do not agree with them. Far too often, they resort to name-calling, which leads to absolutely nowhere.

Politics is the art of persuading opponents to your line of thinking, and it demands the ability to articulate your positions clearly, and in a non-insulting manner. It requires debate, but it must be rational, logical, and courteous.

Sometimes, people won't agree with you 100% of the times. Okay, very rarely, if ever, will someone agree with you 100% of the time. However, you must be able to put aside your differences, and work towards achieving a common goal, despite your lack of total philosophical unity. If the "Ron Paulies" truly wish to accomplish something, they must learn this valuable lesson.
"Paulies" don't get it. They think they've got the only "CONSTITUTIONAL" position on every issue, and are just sure the light will all come on for the rest of us ("not really") conservatives in this country.
This is something that has bothered me in regards to supporters of Ron Paul (as well as other libertarians; the RPs are just the most prominent). It's almost as if they are the only ones who can interpret the Constitution - and heaven forbid if you question them! They tend to have this almost arrogant attitude about it; 'We're Constitutional conservatives, and since you don't agree with us, you're big-government liberal establishment socialists!!!!!!'
They heckled Tom Coburn at the Republican State convention, a real TURN OFF. They will talk you into a corner ranting about the FEDERAL RESERVE and how taxation is slavery and one or two other of their limited points, another TURN OFF.
I definitely agree in regards to Tom Coburn. Sen. Coburn, albeit making a mistake in my eyes regarding the TARP vote, has been the conservative's best friend for years (would the RPs have rather had Kirk Humphreys or Brad Carson?). Some people, in their quest for philosophical purity, would 'throw the baby out with the bathwater', and completely disregard any good Dr. Coburn has done, and continues to do. As I said previously, we'll never agree with someone 100% of the time - we must be able to lay aside those differences, and still work for a common goal (smaller, more limited government, et cetera).

On the other issue: sometimes, in order to persuade a person to your side, you find something that you both agree on, and work from there, rather than starting with something that seems 'extreme' or 'radical' to the normal person. For instance, instead of beginning by ranting about the Federal Reserve, how about discussing wasteful government spending, intrusion into the private sector, or even policies that lead to inflation. Those topics are more mainstream, but are still related in a general way to the Fed. The more varied your portfolio of issues, the more likely you can find an area of agreeance, and the more likely you can persuade someone to your line of thinking.
If he has any connection to these guys, Randy Brogdon, candidate for Governor, would do well to distance himself from these guys, because he's going to have enough difficulties to overcome trying to defeat a very popular Mary Fallin without having these immature and political novices representing him in any way.
Absolutely! To win in a election such as the Governor's race, Brogdon must be able to appeal to voters of all persuasions, not exclusively the libertarian, Ron Paul-ish type. While avoiding pandering, he must expand his outreach to Republicans who may not agree with him on some issues (i.e. non-fiscal conservatives or non-social conservatives) if he wishes to beat Mary Fallin. Belonging and appealing too much to one strict faction will not lead to victory for Randy Brogdon.
Good job guys. You've slit your own throat.....again.
This is a prime example of what I've just written about. Mark Shannon and the "Ron Paulies" probably agree on many issues, but the manner with which they've presented themselves has alienated a potential ally.

In addition to politics being the art of persuasion, it also demands marketing. If you can't persuade or market it in such a way as to appeal, you won't win many victories.

9 comments:

Tere said...

Thanks for a very clear expression of what has turned me off of the Paulies, however much I agree with them. I'd rather have Romney in the White House than ideological purity (and he is a stretch for me!).

Often the Paulies remind me of those idiots in South Carolina who would not let someone speak because he opposed open borders. What's the difference? Rudeness is rudeness and either will win an election.

Red S Tater said...

We always called them ronbots... and there were a good number of them on the old Ann Coulter Message Boards. I learned quickly that they are really the worst of the worst in terms of pretending to be for a different candidate just so they can get in with a group then "convert" to Ron Paul and expose supposed dirt on the candidate they were pretending to support. Watch for this tactic on talk radio also in the future.

R. Artskyd said...

Though some Ron Paul supporters are like that, not all of them are, you should remember.

Anonymous said...

I have two observations for you.

First, you imply that "Paulies" are universally a certain way. Upon what evidence are you basing this? Have you had very broad exposure to many Ron Paul supporters to justify blanketing ALL of them with a label? Are there not supporters of other candidates who you find disagreeable? And if so, do you blanket all of them as well? If not, why?

Second, given the above, are you any better than the people you claim are tactless? Are you not yourself being unnecessarily offensive to an entire SWATHE of people who might otherwise be your allies? Consider the fact you agree with them on many things - such as support for Senator Brogdon for Governor. Yet you're willing to alienate them by posting things like this. I call hypocrisy.

The same goes for Mr. Shannon, who first wrote an article on his blog bashing "Strict Constitutionalists". He apparently doesn't like it when people are confident in their opinions. Second, he went on-air and compared anyone who booed Coburn's vote for the Bailout (many of whom were Ron Paul supporters) to Hilter's Brown Shirts. Yeah, that's a great way to win friends and influence people, Mark!

And now this. Does he, or YOU, for that matter, really think he's doing any better a job of not alienating people by printing and saying such inflammatory things, targeted at specific people who could just as easily be allies?

Think about what you are doing. Before you go to remove the speck from a "Paulies" eye, consider the log in your own.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to do my own paragraph-by-paragraph analysis of your paragraph-by-paragraph analysis:

"This is key. One of the major downfalls for the "Ron Paulies" is their nearly across-the-board inability to communicate with those who do not agree with them. Far too often, they resort to name-calling, which leads to absolutely nowhere."

I'll challenge you on that. Not only is this not "across-the-board", I've seen little, if any, name-calling. I have, however, seen Mark Shannon do his fair share, for instance when he compared those who booed Coburn's defense of his bailout vote to Hilter's Brown Shirts.

"Politics is the art of persuading opponents to your line of thinking, and it demands the ability to articulate your positions clearly, and in a non-insulting manner. It requires debate, but it must be rational, logical, and courteous."

And most of the debate I've seen that you've been a party to, the Paulers did not insult, were polite, logical, and courteous. While you personally may not have been discourteous, some of the other participants were. I don't see you blogging about them.

"However, you must be able to put aside your differences, and work towards achieving a common goal, despite your lack of total philosophical unity. If the "Ron Paulies" truly wish to accomplish something, they must learn this valuable lesson."

Methinks you need to read your own words here. You said yourself you agree with "Paulies" on a great many things, yet you see it fit to trash them in your blog repeatedly. Exactly who is unwilling to work with whom?

"It's almost as if they are the only ones who can interpret the Constitution - and heaven forbid if you question them! They tend to have this almost arrogant attitude about it; 'We're Constitutional conservatives, and since you don't agree with us, you're big-government liberal establishment socialists!!!!!!'"

And those who advocate torture, warrantless spying, and undeclared wars as being Constitutional, while smearing and slinging mud at all who disagree with them do not have an arrogant attitude? I don't see you blogging about and condemning such people even though the blogosphere and airwaves are replete with them.

"I definitely agree in regards to Tom Coburn. Sen. Coburn, albeit making a mistake in my eyes regarding the TARP vote, has been the conservative's best friend for years (would the RPs have rather had Kirk Humphreys or Brad Carson?)."

In the view of the "Paulies", TARP was not Coburn's only bad vote. There were many, many others. While he may be the best we have in the Senate, he himself admitted that TARP was unconstitutional on the floor of the Senate just before voting for it. He therefore premeditated the violation of his oath of office. And for that he has rightfully earned criticism. Shame on anyone who would silence that criticism.

"For instance, instead of beginning by ranting about the Federal Reserve, how about discussing wasteful government spending, intrusion into the private sector, or even policies that lead to inflation. Those topics are more mainstream, but are still related in a general way to the Fed."

But they aren't. The Fed is the root of it all, and we've been complaining for decades about wasteful spending, etc, and we've just gotten deeper and deeper in debt. The only solution is to start speaking the truth that everyone is too afraid to utter, because it's not "mainstream" enough. This mealy-mouthed approach of dodging the real issues so we don't seem to far outside the "mainstream" is exactly why we're in the mess we're in today. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

"This is a prime example of what I've just written about. Mark Shannon and the "Ron Paulies" probably agree on many issues, but the manner with which they've presented themselves has alienated a potential ally."

This is a prime example of what I've just written about. Mark Shannon, Jameson Faught, and the "Ron Paulies" probably agree on many issues, but the manner in which Faught and Shannon repeatedly attack the Paul supporters has alienated HUNDREDS if not THOUSANDS of potential allies.

Anonymous said...

Here's Mark Shannon's political philosophy:

1) Tom Coburn is God.
2) Wayne Rohde is God.
3) Mick Cornett is God.
4) Ron Black is God.
5) Mark Shannon is God.
6) Everyone else is doo-doo.

Anonymous said...

Left one out...
7) Mary Fallin is God.

Anonymous said...

I was not a Ron Paul supporter. I *stupidly* voted for George Bush. I don't know who I would vote for. But I know I bought in to all of the party-line nonsense, the "mainstream" and that has served us all so gosh-darn well, hasn't it?
I have realized that y'all have done a FANTASTIC job of marginalizing all the Ron Paul supporters.
Congratulations.
I love a discussion of rudeness and inability to handle people being kicked off by someone who himself uses derisive terms like "Paulies" to refer to an entire group of people.
What is that, "Do as I say not as I do?"
It's the hypocrisy, stupid.
But actually, it's worse than that.
I know, regardless of whether or not I supported Ron Paul that he has been the most consistent politician regarding the Constitution. And that deserves respect.
The real trouble here is this: y'all don't REALLY want truly Conservative Constitutionalists in power.
Because you see, if you actually follow the Constitution, this whole entrenched power base that has been in existence, it goes right out the window.
I for one, am tired of all of this playing nice stuff. The slick-Willy politicians who compromise so much in the name of PC-niceness that they don't actually have any principles in tact by the time their through.
Ronald Reagan wasn't always Mr. Nice Guy. In fact, he was regularly admonished for how "radical" he was.
I think some of Dr. Paul's supporters are so passionate, just maybe, because they get the sense of urgency that is currently required. And they are a bit fed up with the rest of us who just don't seem to "get it".
Wow. Talking about the FEDERAL RESERVE. Only nuts do that, right?
The fact is, it's an extra-Constitutional body with little to no disclosure and it controls our money. Economic freedom = freedom. But only nuts talk about that stuff.
As far as Tom Coburn goes, yeah that baby does NEED to be thrown out with the bathwater.
Wake up folks.
The TARP bill was a watershed moment in our history.
Whoever voted for it is OUT.
If you have *any clue whatever* about how much trouble we are in right now, you would realize:
IT'S TIME WE CHANGE THE WAY WE DO EVERYTHING.
Where in the world has all of this kind of thinking gotten us to date?
Right where we are now.

Jeff Shaw said...

Well said is all I can say.