I had to figure out an excuse to blog about the Fed Bailout Plan, so I’ll throw in a Logic lesson. I’ve already blogged on some other rhetorical devices, and here’s another: Proof surrogates.
A proof surrogate is worded in such a way as to try to convice others that you’ve offered actual reason, evidence, or proof for something, when indeed you haven’t. Examples of proof surrogates include; “everyone knows,” “people say,” “studies show” (without giving the actual studies or authors), “clearly,” “it’s obvious,” or just repeating the same thing over and over to try to be convincing, etc….
The spokespeople in the congress are providing a lot of proof surrogates, as well as those in the news media. The politicians are at a loss as to why their constituents do not want this bill passed. Well…at this point it is because the American people are being logical, and asking for actual reasons and explanations of this whole mess. I firmly believe we aren’t against aiding the system, per se, it just feels like we are receiving a whole lot of rhetoric, and not enough info.
If I hear the proof surrogate, “this important piece of legislation” one more time, I’m going to throw up (that’s hyperbole, by-the-way, I’m not really going to throw up). That’s the point; we don’t know if it is an important piece of legislation or not…no one is giving us real evidence or info. This is non-partisan; both sides are doing it.
“If we don’t pass this important piece of legislation, it will be bad…really bad.” Yeah, that’s convincing.
If the Gov’t was really interested in getting the people on board with this they need to hire at least two people; an independent (not connected politically) business genius, and an independent psychologist to come up with an advertisement or spot that can be ran on the media outlets. They would do a much better job giving us actual facts about the business implications, and do it in a way that we would pay attention to, and care about. (Oh, for a Ross Perot graph! Never thought I’d say that.)
I understand the fundamentals, but that’s not good enough in this case. Why? Because they are taking my money to do it, an if there’s one thing I know about finances is that you don’t blindly give your money to someone else to invest for you, unless you know alot about them and what they are going to do with your cash…and yes, that may be a big problem…we know what the Gov’t likes to do with our money…
“This is going to affect main street, not just Wall Street.” Proof surrogate. Precisely how is it going to affect main street. It’s going to limit the amount of money we can borrow from banks…it limits our credit. Well! Wasn’t all this fast and loose credit how we got into this in the first place? Give me more details! Why don’t we loan the taxpayers money to those small businesses instead of those big businesses that lost all their money through poor management and bad loans? Go interview someone that knows something, throw in some interviews with an actual middle class person that this is destroying their lives right now, even as we speak…oh, wait, the stock market was up today…
I have no doubt that the economy is bad. I have no doubt that the greed of those in positions of power in these private companies did bad things. I also know people are living too far above their means, taking out loans that they never should be taking out, and our gov’t wants us to be a bunch of consumers. I’m sure a good plan could be devised that doesn’t turn us into a bunch of socialists, and that preserves the free market I know and love…and maybe this bailout plan is it, but we wouldn’t know because we are being treated like children, and to logical arguments with real evidence is being presented to us.
Get on the ball Washington!