Recently a friend suggested renaming "Global Warming" to "Climate Chaos".  Michael Rios wrote:

"Who doesn't like being warm?  And when the warming is
just a couple of degrees, who can tell the difference between 76 degrees and 78? None of these are likely to generate concern in the average listener.

The issue that matters isn't temperature itself; it is the consequences of those changes that are important. So while "global warming" is technically correct, better and more meaningful framings would have been "global climate instability" or "climate chaos."

Framing the debate by choosing what you call the issue is a key way to win a debate before you start. It is something that right wing issue groups have been doing well for years now, using NLP to help frame issues. Perhaps it is time for left wing groups to start using this technology more. Perhaps it is time to email Al Gore and suggest a reframe for global warming like the one Michael Rios gave above

"Strange title for a New York Times bestseller, isn't it, but this little book has lit a fire under the Democratic party which had no idea how it lost the last election. The author, George Lakoff, is a linguist. He studies language and how it works in society and especially inside of our heads.

In this 120-page book, Lakoff argues that the Republicans won by framing the debate about everything in the election. And framing is so powerful a tool that it got people to vote for Bush and against their own self interest. "Many Americans voted their moral identity and values, often at the expense of the economic interests." Such is the power of framing.

Howard Dean, in the foreword, says: "Language matters. Americans who want to be first to set the agenda need to be quick, and must understand the use of language."

Whether you're a politician running for election, a corporate leader trying to shift the corporate direction, or just a parent trying to orient your children, you might want to learn more about framing and reframing.


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