The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America
campaign rhetoric 2008


Another Sign of the Apocalypse

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 14, 2008 - 3:07pm



Durkheim v. Mill

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 13, 2008 - 1:28pm

One of the most insightful accounts I've ever read of why people vote Republican. (Hat tip to Jonathan Jones.) "The Democrats could close much of the gap if they simply learned to see society not just as a collection of individuals—each with a panoply of rights--but as an entity in itself, an entity that needs some tending and caring. Our national motto is e pluribus unum ("from many, one").


Vote Suppression Watch

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 11, 2008 - 12:48pm

Why it's hard for me to be fair and balanced. And more ballot shenanigans here. And more suppression news in Wisconsin.


Developmental Disabilities and the Election

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 9, 2008 - 12:18pm

Palin's Down's infant should not become a political football (although the Christian Right has already done so). Here's a useful perspective on the social policy we need--but probably won't get discussed in the election. (Hat tip to Vanessa Beasley)


NCA Webinar

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 8, 2008 - 11:40am

NCA and the NCA Research Board have chosen this election as the focus of its first Webinar series, and we invite you to join us this Tuesday, September 9, from noon to one o'clock (EDT) for a discussion of the question "Is the Art of Oratory Dead or Alive on the Presidential Campaign Trail in Campaign 2008?" For this initial Webinar, Shawn Parry-Giles (Maryland) has assembled a distinguished panel of analysts of presidential communication: Vanessa Beasley (Vanderbilt), Leroy G. Dorsey (Texas A&M), and J. Michael Hogan (Penn State).Please join us Tuesday at noon for this inaugural NCA Webinar. To join, point your browser here.


Hottest Rhetorical Device

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 7, 2008 - 1:07pm

Antimetabole. Also, it's not a figure of speech, but the dominant rhetorical tactic in the last two presidential campaigns seems to be the juxtaposition, via the easy availability of video (as in the John Stewart example below), of contradictory statements by a public figure. Is there/should there be a name for that?


Got Hope?

Submitted by Jim Aune on September 6, 2008 - 5:48pm

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures


Palin's BabyGate, continued

Submitted by Jim Aune on August 31, 2008 - 6:33pm

The evidence that Trig is not Sarah's child, but her grandchild. And Andrew Sullivan points out that no child of that name was born when or where Palin says she was. I'm not sure any of this matters, but it certainly is weird. Update: The rumor is probably false. It would be an interesting exercise to trace the growth of this story.


The Police State in Minnesota

Submitted by Jim Aune on August 31, 2008 - 5:16pm

No one in the MSM seems to be following the federal and local crackdown on "vegan terrorists" and other dangerous folks in Minneapolis-St. Paul. More here, and thanks to Ron Greene for keeping us posted. For the last twenty years or so I have emphasized the political importance of working within the system for something resembling European social democracy. I am about ready to give up.


Palin's Feminism in Action

Submitted by Jim Aune on August 31, 2008 - 4:50am

OK, I know I'm getting a little obsessive about Palin, but here's a fascinating clip: