Framing Science

In a segment from the recent Frontline special “Hot Politics,” GOP pollster Frank Luntz explains his 1997/1998 memo that became the playbook for how conservatives like President Bush and Senator James Inhofe redefined climate change as really a matter of “scientific uncertainty” and “unfair economic burden.” We detail the strategy and its impact on public opinion in our Framing Science thesis and in our talks as part of the Speaking Science 2.0 national tour.

Below you can watch a clip of Senator Inhofe’s appearance on Fox & Friends the week of the release of this year’s first IPCC report. Inhofe stays on message with the “scientific uncertainty” and “economic burden” frames adding that climate change is really a campaign driven by the “far left,” i.e. “Hollywood elitists and the United Nations.”

Comments

  1. #1 Ted
    May 17, 2007

    Why does it look like it’s dubbed? The words don’t correspond to the mouthings. I was expecting Master of the Flying Guillotine to break out at any moment. Frontline is very cool but flying guillotines would help popularize it with the public.

    So, is that dubbing issue a YouTube thing or are the liberals putting words into Frank’s mouth? :-)

    Frank: Today I would not have that paragraph in a document I put out…

    Well, duh — Today you’d have a different paragraph because that paragraph has lost it’s impact due to critical examination. However, Frank believes that others, still using his words, have a responsibility that they should account for. These words are Frank’s children — and oh, how we hate to disavow our kids.

    Have you asked Frank to assist in the framing of the environmental, energy and climate positions?

  2. #2 RoninGeographer
    May 17, 2007

    Ted: he as much as said he has to idea how to do that – here is another quote from the Hot Politics program:
    “you tell me where global warming fits in [on the more immediate issues]” Iraq, Iran, terrorism, health care, prescription drugs, education…”
    For the answer to that you will have to wait until I find more time to blog…. If we want to bring people around we have to go through the painstaking and discomforting process of constructing a new frame of reference (like Al Gore is doing) rather than using inadequate ones just because they work. ok, I think I have the beginning of my next post… I have a a few posts up about the Luntz at http://www.postnormaltimes.net but his 15 minutes are almost up.

  3. #3 Ted
    May 17, 2007

    15-minutes? Frank is a gift that keeps on giving. I give him much more than 15-minutes. Between contract with America, death taxes, corporate gunslinging, and gaming the outcome of elections, I believe that for Frank, the sky’s the limit…

    I think one of my favorites evah is this:

    The poll, commissioned by the Center for the Study of Taxation and conducted by GOP pollster Frank Luntz, found that 72% of gay and lesbian Americans believe the federal death tax is “discriminatory” and fully 82% of the respondents support a law which would repeal it.

    “The message to both Democrats and Republicans in Congress came through loud and clear in this poll — gay and lesbian Americans want the death tax repealed,” said Kevin Ivers, director of public affairs for Log Cabin Republicans. “This survey went to great lengths to represent both points of view on this issue, but the response was unwavering and crystal clear.”

    “Gay Americans understand that this is not about the David Geffens of the world, but it’s about average gay and lesbian families that deserve fairness,” Ivers said.

    Practiced lies are the best because you can say them with a straight face.

  4. #4 RoninGeographer
    May 17, 2007

    I thought about that 15 minutes and corrected in the post I just put up – “his extended 15 minutes, if not over, will become a lesson for the history books.” – here is the 1st paragraph – lets see how he responds to Gore:

    As attention gathers around Al Gore’s new book, The Assault on Reason, I’m waiting to see if Frank Luntz helps to reframe and build consensus around climate and related matters, as Gore is actually doing, or whether he continues to just call for building consensus and finding “ways to be environmentally protective and not anti-economy,” – and dismisses Gore and friends as angry and hysterical, in which case he can be dismissed as “a Luntz” and his extended 15 minutes, if not over, will become a lesson for the history books. Regardless, Al seems to be ready for him and his kind…

    full post here

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