In 1995 GOPAC was a conservative Republican group whose general chairman was Representative Newt Gingrich.
Gingrich published a handout called Language: A Key Mechanism of Control.
It contained a recommended list of 113 words, for use in attacks on progressive ideas and democrats.
“Words and phrases are powerful,” wrote Gingrich.
“…memorize as many as possible and remember that like any tool, these words will not help if they are not used.”
“Apply these (words) to the opponent, their record, proposals, and their party.”
Newt Gingrich proposed that republicans take control of the nation’s
political discourse by using negative language to smear democrats and their ideas.
The words on his list were: “traitors, betray, sick, pathetic, lie, liberal, radical, hypocrisy, corruption, permissive attitude, greed, self-serving, ideological, anti-flag, anti-family, anti-child, anti-jobs, unionized bureaucracy, impose, and coercion.”
Republicans called their opponents “sick, pathetic, incompetent, liberal traitors whose self-serving permissive attitudes promote a unionized bureaucracy and an anti-flag, anti-family, anti-child, anti-job ideology.”
• abuse of power
• anti- (issue): flag, family, child, jobs
• “compassion” is not enough
• criminal rights
• failure (fail)
• insensitive • intolerant
• permissive attitude
• punish (poor …)
• red tape
• status quo
• urgent (cy)
To be clear, Newt Gingrich and the Republican Party did not offer 113 new policies that republican candidates might use to win an honest campaign.
They decided instead to poison the political debate by smearing Democrats and
They decided to cheat.
In our democracy the people are the government.
As citizens we pay taxes into a common fund which we use to promote the public good.
The public good is public education, housing, healthcare, and nutrition for our children.
We provide access to these essentials because a person without class mobility is not truly free.
It’s time to take our language back from these political opportunists.
These are my new affirmations, repeat after me:
Smear campaigns are not public policy
I am a citizen, not a consumer.
Words have meaning.
I will not be conned.
This year I will #VoteBlue