Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Turn-Around Trick

I find this a most useful trick in politics in general, and recommend its use. It has to do with reversing the argument or question and then studying what you get.

For instance, I just heard an ad for a radio program, to be aired later today on the local public radio station, asking this question: "Can Americans afford another stimulus package?"

Do the turn-around and ask this question: "Can Americans afford NOT to have another stimulus package?" Note how what we think about is different in these two cases and how the mostly invisible basis for comparisons changes.