Things that could be more acceptable to the other side if "sold" differently

IMHO, a lot of ideas could be more acceptable to the other side if “sold” in different packaging.

Single-payer healthcare: Saying “we need to do it out of compassion” is totally the wrong way, that doesn’t sell it. Rather, sell it to conservatives as a matter of national pride. This is one thing Trump could have pulled a “Only Nixon could go to China” on, but didn’t. Argue that “Americans deserve the best healthcare in the world, and what we have right now is a total ripoff.” Demand that the USA have as good, or better, a healthcare system as Canada, the UK, etc. Point out that other nations get better outcomes for less % of GDP spending on healthcare. It would still have been a tough sell, but someone like Trump just might have been able to pull it off - alongside of some vicious Trumpian attacks on the health insurance industry and then pointing out that single-payer is the same concept as health insurance itself, everyone pays into a pool and the pool then pays for everyone.

Abortion - rather than “a woman deserves the right to choose” - which totally backfires with conservatives - point out that if liberals are likelier to have abortions, they are aborting their future liberal voters and giving conservatives a future edge at the polls. (Whether this is actually true or not would need more study, but the concept is intuitive.) This could suddenly get a lot of support from conservatives for abortion that they wouldn’t have otherwise. (I don’t think this approach is ethical or good, but it might work - and this thread is only about what works.)

Free speech - rather than “racists, bigots and white supremacists deserve free speech” - which totally backfires with liberals - it should be pointed out that a conservative tyranny (like Trump is often accused of wanting or enacting) would crack down on liberal free speech (there is already an Atlantic article about this.) Furthermore, liberal ideas that were unpopular in their infancy, such as feminism or LGBT, could only have survived and thrived in a nation with a legal right to free speech.

Environmentalism - focus heavily on toxins. Leave the “we love nature and trees” out of it, that comes across as kumbaya-ish. Rather, focus all on the poisons being ingested. Conservatives don’t like the concept of mercury, lead, or arsenic in their food or water anymore than anyone else does. Hammering the toxic angle, and sounding the alarm on what toxins do when inhaled or ingested, could potentially sell environmentalism much better among conservatives than currently.

As a male person it’s a bit pretentious of me to criticize how the abortion rights people have marketed their position, but that’s never stopped me from doing so.

a) In the grand tradition of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the goddam NARAL shoud’ve brought forth a case in Alabama or Georgia in which a 16 year old girl was pregnant and her parents were trying to book her for an abortion that she did not want. They should have argued that the authority to make the decision has to rest with the pregnant person, even if she is not of age yet. And that because of the immense power of parents to pressure their children in ways that the state can’t protect them from, they need privacy, the opportunity to contemplate such decisions and reach their own conclusions without their parents’ involvement.

b) They should have seized the moral high ground instead of conceding it. They should have said “To interfere with a woman’s authority over her own reproductive options is an abomination in the eyes of God. We’ve already seen that world and we know it is immoral! It polarizes boys against girls, men against women. It turns sex into a furtive shallow opportunistic grabbing, or shoehorns people into marriages that aren’t in their best interests. The social consequences of sexual inequality in this sphere are kin to the consequences of slavery, and no morally responsible person can condone it”.

Not “aww gee, it’s just tissue, it’s no big deal, it’s not a moral issue at all”.

Here’s my quick crack at it as an outsider.

Healthcare: Americans love the conceit that they’re #1. “You want better healthcare? We should have better healthcare! Are we #1 or what? Here’s how we’re gonna do it! We’re gonna take it over and do it right AND cheaper than any country has ever done, ever!” Which isn’t actually going to work in light of massive insurance company lobbying, but I’m dreaming a little for my neighbours to the south.

Abortion: The conservative stance here is that it’s essentially murder. Selling it as “well, let the liberals murder themselves!” still makes conservatives on the hook for permitting murder. I’d like to suggest we send that one back to the drawing table. The best we’ve been able to do in Canada is, “We don’t like it, but it’s the law, so shut your trap about it because it’ll cost [conservatives] the election.” I don’t have a good plan for you, I’m afraid.

Free speech: Let all the idiots, ne’er-do-wells, wacko-militants and others talk. Then we’ll know who to keep an eye on as they pop their heads up like some kind of free speech version of whack-a-mole. (and continue to supress them in private media.)

I think you’ve nailed environmentalism though. “Mercury gets everywhere! Loogit all this mercury in this swordfish I caught! You think that’s the end of it?” The bioaccumulative toxin angle is gonna get the wildlife-oriented folk. The big battle, though, is climate change. “Remember when we didn’t used to have storms up in Maine and rivers bursting their banks and…” whatever else?

And maybe, “Your crap pickup truck with an internal combustion engine is only getting 800 torques. My electric truck is way manlier. Loogit all this crap I can tow! I am a manlier man than you by extension, my dick is bigger and more women want me.” Bicep flex. Associate environmentalistic angles with machismo.

It’s the liberals themselves who make that argument. Liberals, on the whole, are all in favor of racists, bigots, and white supremacists being allowed to speak, so long as we’re allowed to speak in response. The question isn’t how to make free speech acceptable to liberals; it’s how to make it acceptable to Republicans.

Tell that to these liberals.

But we can start a separate thread, so as not to derail this one.

I’m sorry, could you point out the liberals in that article that this needs to be told to?

I don’t see how your dump and run article makes up for your lack of argument here. Could you please show how this opinion piece is in any way supportive of the assertion that you have made?

Not totally, by any means. A great many liberals accept this. They hold their nose, but they accept it.

ETA: apologies for continuing point after it was requested to be dropped

I’m sorry, but why even address this to the Republicans? They have no interest whatsoever in winning over Democrats.

That’s the one that I think works.

I discovered years ago, on a planning board, that people who wouldn’t hear anything else you said if you started off by saying ‘endangered species’ or even ‘species habitat’ would keep listening if you said ‘water quality.’ And you need pretty much the same restrictions for what you can do along the stream banks for both of them.

(After listening to ‘water quality’ for some years, some of them also became able to hear additional reasons.)

Some of these seem like good ideas. Conservatives (traditionally): oppose change; support institutions such as the family, military and church; prefer smaller government; support free trade and laissez-faire economies with less regulation; promote personal responsibility and individual freedom from government; like lower taxes and patriotism; have ideas about morality they wish to make general; and want to win elections. The modern Republican Party and those who fund it may no longer agree with all of these views.

An appeal to patriotism might be effective in health care reform, especially as things like Covid depend on community health and not mere individuals. Those who benefit the most from the current system may reflect that with their lobbying and donations. I don’t know how to repackage things like lobbying restrictions, donation limits or fairness. Maybe giving people good health care would unleash their entrepreneurial spirit, be patriotic, provide a good economic return on investment, be in spirit with many religions and help families.

I have not heard that anti-abortion argument. In Canada, as noted, it is accepted even by most men that women have the right to choose what to do with their bodies. Those who do not accept this understand their views are currently unpopular. I think your argument would have quite limited success as the Republicans do not think about demographics as much as they should.

I do not understand the US free speech debate enough to comment.

Discussing toxins seems a good start to environmental issues. Instead of burdening folks with hunting and fishing licences, emphasize passing along their love of the outdoors to their future family. Show the economic benefits and opportunities of cleaner air and water. Instead of debating whether climate change can be proven to some arbitrary standard, focus on partial insurance against natural disaster, cleaner air and water, protecting the right to enjoy the outdoors for great grandchildren.

I think personal freedom and less regulation should also be used to legalize marijuana or other behaviours where other people are not being harmed but the social and economic costs of enforcement are too high.

The best “free speech” marketing pitch I know is – do you want “The Government” to be in charge of who gets to say what? Conservatives and Liberals don’t!

Renewable energy Fuck the environment angle, make it a case of economic and national self sufficiency. Make it shameful for our nation, powerful lobbies, and mega corps to beg others for resources. ‘Made in America’ is a stamp of pride, put it on windmills and solar power. And, hey, since conservatives love a free market let’s end renewable energy tax credits to oil companies with no compunction to produce results. Instead give that investment to an open pool where independent inventors can compete.

I think school choice could be appealing to the left, if it wasn’t presented as a way to destroy the public school system and use that money to fund religious indoctrination schools.

A public school choice system may be more popular with the left, and it would save on housing costs since people wouldn’t have to congregate in certain neighborhoods for good schools.

If health reform was presented as a way to save money (which is does) it may be more popular with some on the right.

Yeah, this could also be sold with a “F _ _ _ Middle Eastern oil” angle. (The problem being, though, that people who say f*** Middle Eastern oil are likely to think “let’s drill our own oil in America” rather than embracing renewables.) But yes I like it.

Not one dollar of public funds goes to a religious school. They should be punked with ‘Sharia Law School’ stunts every time those come up, the same way ‘Satan Pamphlets’ appear at schools with Christians handing out religious material.

A parent getting to pick where their kids goes to school? Love it. All liberals would already. The state pays for bussing Kids out of the ghetto though, right?

We can do both. It will take decades or a generation to change the mindset anyway, start with just using what we have on land we already own.

Right, other countries with more restrictive free speech rights have always been just so far behind the curve on this compared to the USA :roll_eyes:

So, about that ERA… and trans people in the military…and SCOTUS judges publicly saying they regret opening marriage to gays

This excellent article highlights some of the challenges to progressive policies.

That doesn’t solve the underlying issue, which is this:

How fucked up do we want the unlucky kids to get?

Really, that’s the question. “School choice” includes the choice to send kids to Uncle Al’s Homeopath And Flat Earth Israel Ain’t Real But Race Is Alex Jones Infowars Infotainment Academy, or equivalent thereof, and that just doesn’t sit well with me. I want to live in a society where everyone at least has a solid chance to learn what reality is before they’re legally allowed to raise kids of their own.