Don't Write of an Elephant

By David Swanson

Remarks prepared for workshop at the 50th Anniversary Convention of the American Federation of Teachers Communications Association.

To follow viewing of a George Lakoff film and discussion of the fight to save Social Security.

I didn’t think too much of George Lakoff until I’d read enough of him myself. I was scared off by his praise for Clinton’s stealing right-wing language on welfare, and by his asking Howard Dean to write a forward to one of his books. Lakoff last week wrote a terrific column praising the Democrats for forming an Out of Iraq Caucus and talking about the Downing Street Minutes, and lamenting their swallowing Karl Rove’s bait and changing the topic back to the attacks of 9-11. But it was the progressive Democrats who were opposing the war and it was a popular protest that forced Downing Street into the news. Meanwhile, it was the Democratic leadership swallowing Rove’s bait. Howard Dean’s association with Lakoff put me off, not because Dean is the radical the media tell us he is, but because Dean, like Clinton, goes with the flow, and usually the flow is rightward. It wasn’t until I’d read enough Lakoff myself that I saw that he didn’t actually advocate that

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