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View Full Version : New Speech Strategy: Emphasize the Positive Future Vision




Tamasaburo
02-07-2012, 07:46 PM
http://www.ted.com/talks/nancy_duarte_the_secret_structure_of_great_talks.h tml

I watched this recently and it seemed very accurate to me. I've noticed Paul's speeches improving lately, but I think by adopting this strategy or something like it, he could really widen his base of inspired supporters.

Basically, the idea behind the video is that great speeches share a similar structure:

--begin with how things are.
--then describe your dream for how the future could be and make the contrast look big.
--then go back to talking about how things are.
--repeat this process a few times so that the status quo starts to seem increasingly unappealing in comparison to "the dream"
--end on a high note, talking not about the status quo, but about the amazing future that awaits if your idea is adopted.

She gives examples like MLK Jr's "Dream" speech, which goes basically like this:

--100 years after the Emancipation Proclamation, black people in America have made strides but are still not free, equal citizens.
--BUT, I have a DREAM of a world in which my children are judged not by the color of their skin, but the content of their character.
--even today black people are suffering under vicious racism and segregation and I know many of you are angry.
--BUT, I have a DREAM of an America in which ALL her citizens can sing "let freedom ring"... and so on, ending on a hopeful, inspirational note.

Now I know Dr. Paul's speaking style is nothing like that of MLK Jr, and we're not going to fundamentally change the way he talks. But the claim is that this is the way most or all of the most inspirational speeches move, and it seems pretty plausible to me.

The key is in getting the status quo to look unattractive in comparison to the vision. The more I think about it, the more I've come to think our biggest single obstacle right now isn't any one particular issue--not even foreign policy. It's people who think things in America today are pretty much okay. People who think the status quo just needs to be tweaked a little bit and things will be cool. Older people who don't want to rock the boat. And that's why they're voting for Romney and Gingrich--not because they like them, but because they represent the status quo.

What does a vote for Romney mean, really? It means, I'm pretty much okay with the status quo plus a few minor tweaks and anyway I don't want Gingrich or more Obama. A vote for Gingrich means, I want a bigger change than I'll get with Romney and Gingrich seems dynamic, but he's still not going to change things fundamentally. But a vote for Ron Paul is obviously a vote AGAINST the status quo. It's a vote for big change. And too many people are still okay with the status quo and too afraid of big change.

I notice Paul spends a lot of time in his speeches talking about how our policies have messed everything up. And that's okay and necessary. And of course, he does mention the benefits of increased liberty A LITTLE, but I think NOT ENOUGH. I think he needs to to spend a lot more time talking about the amazing future he sees if his ideas get implemented. I can easily imagine a Paul speech going something like:

--over two centuries ago our founders gave us a revolutionary new system of government--the greatest experiment in freedom the world has ever seen. But today we are deep in debt, corruption, endless wars, and an ongoing economic depression
--BUT, I have a vision of America at peace with the world, an America that minds its own business, an America with plentiful job opportunities for all, an America with 5, 10% GDP growth a year!
--today, we give over 25% of our income to the government to spend on wars, bailouts, etc.
--BUT I have a vision of an America with NO income tax, where you're free to use your own money the way you see fit. Where if you want to start a business you can do it your way with no interference from a bunch of bureaucratic regulators.
--today, we fill our prisons with non-violent offenders
--BUT I have a vision of a safe, prosperous America where addicts are treated like medical patients and the drug dealers are all out of business.
--today we rely on the state to take care of us, to house us, provide our medical care, to make us better people.
--BUT I have a vision of an America where we take care of each other instead of relying on the state to do it, an America where the cost of medical care, housing, and education goes DOWN every year instead of up...
--today we have a monetary system backed by nothing which the powerful bankers can use to bail out their friends
--BUT I imagine a US dollar that's worth as much or more ten years later as it is now--a monetary system that encourages savings and investment and responsibility and a strong middle class... etc.
--and then end on a high, hopeful note.

Anyway, even if it doesn't follow this exact structure, I think it would be good for Paul to spend more time emphasizing the good things we can expect (and not humbly, either--go for broke--describe libertopia even if it's not going to be achieved in one term, the direction we want to move in is key) if we elect him and less time describing how the old politicians have messed up. Everybody already thinks the old politicians suck--they don't need reminding. The problem is they still don't have a positive enough alternative vision to compare the status quo to. One positive enough they're willing to give up the safety of the status quo and cast a vote for Paul. We need to give them that vision.

FindLiberty
02-07-2012, 07:57 PM
...I've noticed Paul's speeches improving lately, but I think by adopting this strategy or something like it, he could really widen his base of inspired supporters. Basically, the idea behind the video is that great speeches share a similar structure:

--begin with how things are.
--then describe your dream for how the future could be and make the contrast look big.
--then go back to talking about how things are.
--repeat this process a few times so that the status quo starts to seem increasingly unappealing in comparison to "the dream"
--end on a high note, talking not about the status quo, but about the amazing future that awaits if your idea is adopted.
<... SNIP...>

I can easily imagine a Paul speech going something like:

--over two centuries ago our founders gave us a revolutionary new system of government--the greatest experiment in freedom the world has ever seen. But today we are deep in debt, corruption, endless wars, and an ongoing economic depression
--BUT, I have a vision of America at peace with the world, an America that minds its own business, an America with plentiful job opportunities for all, an America with 5, 10% GDP growth a year!
--today, we give over 25% of our income to the government to spend on wars, bailouts, etc.
--BUT I have a vision of an America with NO income tax, where you're free to use your own money the way you see fit. Where if you want to start a business you can do it your way with no interference from a bunch of bureaucratic regulators.
--today, we fill our prisons with non-violent offenders
--BUT I have a vision of a safe, prosperous America where addicts are treated like medical patients and the drug dealers are all out of business.
--today we rely on the state to take care of us, to house us, provide our medical care, to make us better people.
--BUT I have a vision of an America where we take care of each other instead of relying on the state to do it, an America where the cost of medical care, housing, and education goes DOWN every year instead of up...
--today we have a monetary system backed by nothing which the powerful bankers can use to bail out their friends
--BUT I imagine a US dollar that's worth as much or more ten years later as it is now--a monetary system that encourages savings and investment and responsibility and a strong middle class... etc.
--and then end on a high, hopeful note.
<... SNIP...>

...they still don't have a positive enough alternative vision to compare the status quo to. One positive enough they're willing to give up the safety of the status quo and cast a vote for Paul. We need to give them that vision.

VERY GOOD POST & SUGGESTIONS. +100%

acptulsa
02-07-2012, 08:02 PM
Absolutely. We could stand to find a way to make Ron Paul want to sound like Ronald Reagan--at least once or twice. Absolutely.

Yo, Campaign! Ask the man if in the event one of us wrote a speech in the Reagan style of inspiration, he would read it aloud and in public. Please?

jacmicwag
02-07-2012, 08:05 PM
Thanks for taking the time on that analysis. We need people like you to make it happen.

PursuePeace
02-07-2012, 08:05 PM
VERY GOOD POST & SUGGESTIONS. +100%

I agree!
Excellent suggestion.

PursuePeace
02-07-2012, 08:08 PM
We need to give them that vision.

YES!!!!!!!