Looping a version of the truth to prevent others from hearing a better version can be detrimental to a nation and its people. In this episode, Bill Stierle and Tom impart to us their insights on how we become a better nation by knowing what is true or not from our politicians. Turning the corner and moving forward in a healthier way as a nation amidst Donald Trump’s regime has become a goal for the congress even among fellow Republicans. They talk about how a lot of Republicans are very upset that Trump is the leader of their party because he is hijacking their ideology. Equip yourself more with the right truths from Bill and Tom as they discuss further the power of influence, communication bullseye, and the power of narratives.
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Being A Healthy Nation With Healthy Truths
Bill, I was dying to get to this with you after we finished our last one because of what we talked about the very end. I feel like the ideologies that are going on, especially with the current administration, has been so twisted from what people would think a conservative or a Republican ideology, to be more specific, should be. Even a lot of Republicans would never have agreed with many of the things that the Trump administration is doing. Donald Trump has hijacked the ideology. I’m interested in exploring that a little bit but then more importantly, how do we turn the corner and move forward in a more healthy way for the whole nation?
The biggest challenge that we have is that when a person has occupied their version of truth by saying their version of truth over and over again and even preventing people from hearing truth, that is challenging. When your parents raise you, when you were ten years old, did they tell you adult things?
Not much, no.
They didn’t tell you about the complexity of running an adult life, did they?
No. They would probably try to protect me from it.
They would limit the messaging in your direction so they wouldn’t scare you of the horrors of the world, as well as overwhelmed you with taxes, house payments, or making enough money for food. Do you see how overwhelming that would get to a ten-year-old?
It would. In my situation in particular, with my parents being divorced, there were a lot of other things that I was protected from in the realities of an adult relationship, why our mom and dad are not going to live together anymore. I can relate.
What winds up happening is that when we talk about identity and we communicate about truth, we’re set off to believe that this identity is true. What gets filled in underneath it is up to the next communicator. For example, at one time the Democratic Party was very vibrant about supporting slavery and the Republican Party was against slavery. Lincoln was against slavery and he was a Republican. It’s clear that the identity has stayed the same but the truth has changed. The truth about the identity is that this party used to stand for this, but now they stand for this other thing. It just changed over time. There’s a thing called the flip flop that takes place. The flip flop is we’re voting this way. With the Southern strategy, it looks like we’ve lost the entire South because the South is then hijacked and believes that this messaging is put in their direction. The truth is hijacked or the belief structure is hijacked because this is where that belief structure lies, is in this space. That disregarding of truth becomes easier because it’s not a part of my identity anymore.
Your truth is impacted significantly by what your identity is. In some ways, does that become what your ideology is as well then?
All of a sudden, it’s like, “I’m a Republican, aren’t I against the budget overruns?”Integrity means if we sign a contract for something, we're going to stick with it. Click To Tweet
Deficits and ballooning the national debt and things like that. That was a pillar of their platform.
My identity is Republican. My ideology and the meaning of what that is true about is not that anymore. It’s giving money or a tax break to wealthy people. How do we know that that’s the real ideology? It’s because that’s what they voted for.
I remember the big contrast from when Paul Ryan came into the Congress and he was a deficit hawk. He was a fiscal conservative. “We are not going to spend money we don’t have. We’re not going to spend money unless we can decrease the same amount of money from budget elsewhere.” I remember that Congress and when he first came in, that was the big thing they all cared about ever. That’s certainly the main thing. What’s happened over time and before he leaves his position as the Speaker of the House and then the Minority Leader at the very end, all of that is out the window. No one is talking about that anymore.
The remnants of these ideologies that fit underneath the identity or changing the ideology have changed. Its strength looks like firing people. Strength looks like being nice to strong people because they’re strong leaders, even if they’re dictators or even autocrats. Russia is more on criminal capitalism, is a good way to say it. It’s how do you get these oligarchs to run these various different industries and it’s capitalism but it’s not really capitalism. It’s capitalism with a mix of mob mentality.
This is definitely in American now. This is a top-down ideology. I was shocked that Kim Jong-un, the dictator in North Korea, they came out that his half-brother, when he was alive, was a CIA asset. They were getting information on what’s going on in North Korea from him. He was a paid asset for the United States CIA. This news came out. What does the president say? He says, “That would never happen under my administration.” I could not believe that. I was like, “Whose side are you on, President Donald Trump?” Quite honestly, he’s saying, “I wouldn’t disrespect a dictator by spying on him. That wouldn’t happen under my administration,” and then implying that previous administrations somehow were out of integrity or somehow bad by allowing that to happen. First of all, I don’t even know that the president would ever be consulted on who the CIA uses for asset gathering.
That’s a big part of that discussion at that time. Would they even let him know who was going to be in it? No. You don’t just to let people know that. It happened even in the George W. Bush administration when Valerie Plame got outed, that was really bad. Who does that? You crossed one of our primary values. That was Dick Cheney that did that. I think he did that.
That was Dick Cheney and his assistant Scooter Libby was involved in that too. He’s the one who ended up going to jail for it. Later he was pardoned by George W. Bush. This talk from the president, the thing that’s shocking about it is I’m sure that the vast majority of Republican senators and congressmen, the representatives from all over the country would have thought a president would never say such a thing or a Republican president would never say such a thing. They would have aligned themselves with supporting the CIA using such an asset to gather intelligence on a communist dictatorship. Now they have to get in line with their guy, the leader of their party. A lot of them, I’m sure are very upset that he is the leader of their party because he is hijacking their ideology.
This is very unsettling because the ideology is not one of legality or equanimity over the power of the law. It’s who has power of influence. If I have power of influence, I have power over law. The power of influence covers or mitigates the power of law. When it does that, we’ve got problems. It’s got to be the other way. You and I could have an honest discussion about how certain elements of government might not be as honest to criminals and break a rule or two to catch a criminal. A CIA agent might do something that in America, if they did it to another American, they would go to jail for it. If they did it to a foreigner, they just did it to a foreigner because it was the best interest of their country.
Let’s take “007 License to Kill” here so to speak. It’s not America, that’s British.
It’s still the same, a spy gets to break the rules and kills others because these other people are doing a big, evil thing. Let’s do it this way then. Kim Jong-un does not have his half-brother executed.
He’s still alive?
Let’s suppose he didn’t. What he did is capture his half-brother, bring him back to North Korea, try him for being a spy and facing the country’s laws for espionage and spying against him as a dictator and the country. He is now executed because he was caught as a CIA spy. He wasn’t murdered in another country. There was a fake trial or a real trial. The evidence was put through. He’s convicted in a court of law and then executed.
It could have made a big example out of him, a spectacle out of it.
Did he have the mindset, the resources or the willingness? Would it have broken international rules if he’s kidnapping from one country that maybe gave him asylum and bring them to another asylum? Why don’t they just kill him there?
It was a lot more efficient in his mind.
We could do the same thing for us. A lot of people aren’t going to like this story and they can tell the same story. Barack Obama does not kill Osama bin Laden. He captures him. They lift him out of Pakistan. They bring him back to the United States, put him on trial and then execute him here, breaking all kinds of international rules of extraction. People won’t like that story but they’re pissed at the other story. Now we put the Jamal Khashoggi story. They executed him in the embassy because from their perspective, he broke their rules and he was lured to their embassy, which is their sovereign territory. This gets unsettling when you see all of these three things next to each other. This is a problem with truth. One of the biggest problems with truth is that truth is what human beings make it up to be based on the rules and constructs that either placed or chosen to put on a group of individuals.
You can say the same thing about colonial Americans who were guilty of treason against the British Empire but they’re patriots of this New United States of America, right?
Correct. You could say, “We were right.” Who’s we? Who’s the right part? From the king and the nobles of England and Great Britain at that time, it was perfectly legal for them to have an affluent lifestyle by taxing the American colonies. It was legal. They were all jockeying for position between the nobles. Who’s going to marry who? Who’s going to stay in the upper echelon? Who are you marrying? What’s your line of nobility? America has got a little trouble right now. One of the things that the founding fathers have tried is to level that playing field because the major rebellion was against a kingship, against a nobility, against a royal class of people and affluent class of people, a disparency between rich and poor. That was why it was written the way it was written. We’ve got the guy in there that we need to have compassion and empathy for because the way the capitalist system has moved allowed him to go into this position of governmental leadership through voting and being elected, but bringing the worst of what England and the nobles used to do or any dictator would do.
He’s bringing in all those different values, that in the current world of environment, you can get away with. There’s no oligarch going to prison right now. Scooter Libby will go to prison but Dick Cheney is not going to go to prison. What’s that about? Karl Rove is not going to go to prison. Henry Kissinger is not going to go into prison. There’s a whole bunch of these characters. George W. Bush is not going to go to prison for starting the Iraq war for nothing, for a propaganda experience that he tricked the United States citizens into doing by scaring the crap out of us and scaring the crap out of the voters so that only one person would vote against them. Maxine Waters, she goes, “No war. This is bull.”
It wasn’t Iraq, it was Afghanistan or it seemed more like it was the George W. Bush administration going after Saddam Hussein in a revenge need because of what happened with his father and the first Iraq War.The compassion and empathy in the President's truth is in a capitalist competitive system. Click To Tweet
They were planning the assassination of him if I remember the story correctly. When he was in Kuwait, they were looking at having him assassinated. His son goes, “You did this to my dad.” It’s like, “That’s what kings would do.” Kings would do this in the past. Didn’t Louis XVI have some problem with this? Didn’t you get his head chopped off from something similar like this? Louis XVI got his head chopped off for looking for support from a foreign government to send troops to support him.
Here we are in America where the president thinks of himself as a king. He wants everyone to take what he says at face value and do what he wants despite the rules. The Republicans in Congress, except for one, Justin Amash being the lone stand out, they’ve bent all over backward. They’ve all flip-flopped on position of many policy issues to be in alignment with the president. How do we get through this? How do we move on and get to a healthier place where there’s more integrity? I’m a little lost right now, Bill.
I’m glad that you’ve asked a strong question. The challenge is that we are going to move to a place of healing the identity of America. A big part of the healing process is going to be having a good deal of courage to do things. The most difficult thing that the next president will have is departing from the old administration. The next president has to be committed to doing cleanup work for the metaphorical frat party that has been held in the White House for four years. The reason why I’m calling it a frat party is because anything goes, a lot of people choosing to do things the way they would like, you have a lot of broken dishes, a lot of valuable things have been destroyed that need to be fixed. Things like mutual respect, fairness, integrity. Whether it’s Kamala Harris that’s going to do it because she made the sentence, “My DOJ is going to prosecute Donald Trump when I get in.” That sentence by itself makes her less electable. If I wanted to make her more electable, it would sound like this. “My administration is going to pursue justice. Justice may look like prosecuting the president.” It may look like or we may choose healing the nation first. For me, we need to balance the healing of the nation with the justice, with the damage that has been done up to this point. Now she’s more electable. Does that make sense now?
It makes complete sense to me. I think you’re right. There’s a lot of damage that’s going to have to be undone not just domestically but I also think internationally. For decades, other countries, especially NATO countries have been able to count on the United States and their position on fundamental things. Let’s take their position on the Iran nuclear deal or the Paris climate accord. There were things that America pledged to do whether you agree with them or not. This is to me not a political issue, but more of the integrity of the good word of the United States of America. If one administration will agree to a treaty of some kind or an international agreement, the next administration comes in within a couple of years and undoes it. Then the international community, other world leaders are never going to trust if they have any agreement with the United States that that agreement is worth anything.
Let’s change that to a communication bullseye. You threw some good words out there. You framed the story pretty well. The communication bullseye might sound like if I was Elizabeth Warren, I might say, “America needs to be known as a country who meets the need for integrity from one administration to the next.” At the international worldwide stage, this means something because we sell things to other people and they buy our things and we would like them to trust and to like us. In order to do that, the need for integrity means if we sign a contract for something, we’re going to stick with it. We might not like some of the elements of the contract where some of the elements of the contract might get changed or we want to rewrite the contract. We could ask the person if we could rewrite the contract together. I’m interested in doing that because that’s what integrity looks like but at no time, what I say I am not honoring a contract that I have signed. That’s why you need to vote for Elizabeth Warren for president. How do you feel now?
That would be very effective.
That’s called the communication bullseye. That was built around a need or a value that you are going to stand for as an individual. Don’t tell too much of the story. There’s one thing about Donald Trump that was the thing that got him elected is he never told too much about the story because he didn’t know very much about the story. He never told about the story because in sales and in marketing, if you explain too much, you cannot sell.
That’s what you taught me. You’ve got to build anticipation. You’ve got to get people thinking about what is going to be better for them in the future, get them excited about it. The details are not important.
If you’re like 95% of the people that are selling things and 85% of the politicians are standing for something, but they’re not standing for what is going to meet most of their constituents, just the ones that vote. I am not going to do something for someone who doesn’t vote even though it costs me more money. I’m going to do things for the people who are voting and the ones that are contributing. Let’s pay attention to the primary target of getting elected. They get to pin the communication bullseye. They have to move the bullseye. They have to move the whole thing over. I have a picture of a dartboard with arrows towards the center of the bullseye. The way to talk about the communication bullseye is what need am I throwing a dart at? One of the things is that for the successful politician, let’s say Joe Biden gets to look at some of his messaging or Bernie Sanders gets to relook some of his messaging. Instead of ranting at a person to try to generate guilt or shame, he wants to be compassionate to the person in order to establish a relationship. If I’m going to be compassionate to the person who might say something like this to the people at Walmart, “All of you people here are investors in Walmart and I know that Walmart has made you a lot of money as investors.” He was the one that visited the investor’s stockholder’s meeting.
I remember, I saw that. He seemed to berate them.
His best play that would have gotten them to, A, vote for an employee salary increase or B, to vote him for president, might have sounded like this communication. It would have started out saying and acknowledging the value that Walmart has brought to America. That’s where I would’ve started, “I want to acknowledge and recognize this organization has done a wonderful job in supporting Americans to get work, hiring people and bringing people into the ranks that most people wouldn’t have hired. I respect how Walmart has kept their prices and have had price negotiations with people. Some of it went well, some of it has not went well because a lot of people have got burned in that environment, but still you are a major employer.
The only challenge is the need for fairness to start now. We have to work our way back to fairness and fairness would look like a living wage. I’m building it around value instead of, “It’s not fair that you’re rich and it’s not fair the employees are poor or can’t afford stuff. It’s not fair that the American taxpayers are paying for your employee’s healthcare.” That’s a Bernie Sanders’ rant. That rant is not as powerful as to say, “Fairness to me looks like care for your employees look like this to me and I’m only in a small position to recommend that to you because you know that you can outvote me in this room.” If he said that out loud, they will go like, “We are going to outvote him. If we outvote him, we’ve just voted against fairness for us employees.”
All of a sudden, if he would like to screw up a little bit, he can say, “There might be a day that your employees think about the need for fairness and realize it can’t be met at a Walmart anymore and they might well go to your competitor.” “He told my employees to go look for a different job.” Go to Target. A communication message, whether it is a Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren or a Pete Buttigieg, whatever the message of the value is, those are the things that you have asked to clarify. When we’re trying to reestablish an identity, that meets the standard and that backs up the American brand, not just the sizzle of the American brand. President Donald Trump did a wonderful job of selling sizzle and like his steaks, they are not available. His version and the brand damage to the word America has got to be restored.
I liked how you chose that example of Bernie Sanders and you called it a rant, which in reality it was. What he did, unfortunately, which hurt the message that he’s trying to deliver of fairness, is that he pit the 1% against the 99% in an adversarial way. He called out the Walton family of Walmart saying, “If so much percent of their wealth were put into their work or salaries, they could all have $15 an hour minimum wage and that’s a livable wage.” He made us versus them arguments saying that it’s so out of whack, you have to bring it back to something that is livable. If he used the language a little differently, the way you gave as an example, they would have been guilted into doing it in a way that wouldn’t feel like that. It’s just like, “If we don’t do this, if we don’t write this wrong, we’re going to look like the biggest jerks on earth.” The way you put it, it was very good. I also liked the example of Bernie Sanders because we see President Donald Trump going on rants almost daily on Twitter to making his arguments. In some ways, it doesn’t matter where your political ideology lies. Each side is not very good at communicating the way it was going to achieve their goals.
I remember there’s nobody doing PR for the Agriculture Department. There’s nobody doing PR work for the Energy Department. There’s nobody doing PR for the Health and Human Services. There’s no PR work done. There’s nobody saying, “Look at all these good things that this department is doing for us.” The voter has a sales marketing vacuum. All you’ve got to do is get a pundit or two or 50,000 over the last 30 years taking a shot at an organization that has no fundamental tool to push back.
This is like when you hear discussions about, “Our government budget is too high. We need to cut a department.” There’s nobody talking about all the good the department is doing for the country. People attacking that department.
There are people keeping birds off the runway so that the bird doesn’t fly, scaring birds with shotguns off of a runway so that the bird doesn’t fly into a plane’s engine so people don’t die. That’s a government job. I want that person there. I fly a lot. I want those birds off the runway. I do not want geese flying into an engine. I don’t want that to take place. A part $0.00 goes to pay that guy a salary rate to scare those birds off the runway. I want somebody there to do that. I don’t see it and it is a small thing. Not to me and my family, it’s not a small thing. Not to my ability to go do work in other states or throughout the world, that’s not a small thing. It’s a big thing.
There’s nobody that is illuminating to the country, all the things that these departments do for us, that’s fair.
The best marketers, the best PR people, and the best salespeople are the ones that are working for military contractors. Those are the best people because they’ve got the biggest budget and they keep cycling. The industrial complex knows they’ve got to look shiny and sparkly and in the good and in the right and that there’s respect there, that it’s valuable and they stay after it so much that it is literally nobody in Congress can vote against them. They build all of their parts in different congressional districts. They don’t build the plane in one state, in one city. They build the wing over here. That wing has to go over here. It’s the most inefficient way to do it from the perspective of manufacturing. It’s a very inefficient manufacturing thing but they can then see the votes of that congressperson while I can’t vote to kill this plane because I have 7,000 people in my district or 20,000 people in my district putting that wing together that then is shipped to Seattle in order to have this put to it.Your truth is impacted significantly by what your identity is. Click To Tweet
There’s a trucker that has to take the plane from this engine from here to here. Its manufacturing is like, “It is designed manufacturing-wise to keep the funding in place.” It’s not designed for efficiency. It’s not designed for cost-cutting. It’s designed for stability with the vote. Let’s keep our truth bullseye communication going. That truth won’t have or does have very little limits on the voter. What the voter wants to hear is how are you going to stand for mutual respect? How are you going to stand for accountability? How are you going to stand for things I value? People are amazed that Pete Buttigieg is number four or five in the list.
I’ve even seen four and close to even knocking on the door of three in some polls.
Why is he doing that? He’s staying very close to primary values. You go like, “At no time in my government will I ever communicate and talk with a foreign country to take advantage of our political system. I’m not going to do that. At no time, I do not even want to hear, even if it’s an advantage for me. I don’t want to hear it because it undermines the confidence of this voter and it makes them compliant that I am a win at all costs at the expense of other Americans? I don’t think that’s a good precedent for us to set. I don’t want to set that precedent.”
That’s an interesting one that you bring up. I agree, that’s a very good issue to bring up because it’s the polar opposite from what the president has done. He’s doubling down on help from foreign governments. I don’t know if it was at ABC News, somebody asked him if he would ever take help. He said, “Yes, why wouldn’t I? I’m sure.”
I would look at it to see if it’s happening. For people that are listening to that, we’ve got to bring compassion and empathy for that sentence. The compassion and empathy is the president’s truth in a capitalist competitive system. You look at any advantage that you can get against your competitor in the capitalist system. The worker that’s at the low end of the stick will say, “My boss does it to me all the time and I have to eat his crap every day because he’s the boss and I’m not. I want this guy to win because this guy is just like my boss. He’s the one that’s going to speak truth to power because he’s in a powerful position. He has the ability to speak truth more than my truth because I can’t say my truth. My truth gets me fired. If he says the truth, at least he’s making a decision on my behalf.”
They’re not voting for his qualities or attributes anymore. They’re not voting for the things he’s saying or doing. They’re voting for their own behalf. That’s their truth. He gives me a voice that was previously unexpressed. I turned into a six-year-old, he turns into my dad. I am mad as hell and I have a need for being heard. He’s telling me, not only that he meets his need for heard but he gets to choose whatever he wants to choose. Tom, the Donald Trump administration has been accused of not giving information to Congress. What have they been accused of? There are three or four things.
What did they choose of not giving to Congress? Donald Trump’s tax returns, number one. There was the mansion and then the whole treasury department denied and fighting that. Don McGahn to testify who was a White House counsel.
The primary word that they’re using then is the word no, correct?
No, which is stonewalling. It is withdraw. I’m not going to engage in the process. I’m not going to provide information. They’re using the word no. Notice how effectively they’re using the word no. “No, we’re not doing that. It’s not legal.” They’re going to explain that.
Yes. “No, I have the executive privilege.” “No, I’m not going to let the person testify.” The word no is a very challenging word because it’s a black and white word. There is either no or there’s yes. If I say yes, then I’m collaborating, cooperating and participating with my enemy. My real enemy isn’t Russia. My real enemy is the Democrats. See how all of a sudden the enemy is different? I’m going to say no to my enemy. I’m not interested in what’s good for America. I’m interested in what’s good for me because I’m a capitalist. I’m more like mob boss capitalists than any capitalists because this is the person I am. I’ve got away with it. My dad got away with it. He had more integrity than I did. People are going to know this. How can we get around the word no and do a communication bullseye and be empathetic and compassionate to a person that’s saying no to us?
We’d be compassionate to them.
I want to be compassionate to the person or no? I want to be compassionate. I want to speak their truth. I want to speak their truth to them when they say no to me. Let’s roleplay a little bit. You get to say the word no to me. You say no, “I’m not going to.” You could say taxes.
No, I’m not giving you my tax returns because they’re still under audit.
“Mr. President, it sounds like you would choose privacy and you want to choose to not provide any form of the taxes because you’d prefer privacy. You would like them to get to completion. It sounds like you’re going to choose to give it to me at a future time but you’re also choosing not to tell me which time it is. I have a need for certainty, a need for integrity and mutual respect. If you get to see the taxes of other candidates, we would like you to be in integrity and show mutual respect to the other candidates. Are you going to choose to not honor respect because the other candidates are doing it or are you going to still go for privacy to keep your secret at this point and not disclosures? Is that what you’re choosing to do?” You feel helpless and you have a thought as the president, you don’t have any choice because some other power over you has more respect to you and you have no ability to do that, to overcome? You have no ability to override the IRS, am I hearing that right?
I don’t know how to answer that.
The communication is clearly a bullseye. All of a sudden, he’s like going like, “If I say yes to that,” which is true, then what happens is that he just loses respect.
Why it was so amazing to me that no one, because he’s been asked about this question only about 100 times, maybe 1,000 of his taxes. He always says, “I’m under audit. I can’t release them.” The truth is he can but all they say is, “The IRS does have a rule over that. They say you can release them.” They’re arguing the fact instead of what you just did.Here we are in America where the President thinks of himself as King. Click To Tweet
If anybody’s reading this, this is the primary motivator for me doing this is that the context word of no always can be leveled with the subtext word choice because they’re choosing something else. When they’re choosing something else, if we have a communication bullseye, the big title of this particular thing could being Crafting the Communication Bullseye. The communication bullseye is using applied, empathy and compassion for the stuff that’s coming out of their mouth and reframe from getting into a truth argument with an illusion. Do not argue with somebody else’s illusion from a fact place. Scare them with certainty and a need. We have a need for protection of our coastal cities. Our coastal cities and certain real estate are under threat. As Americans, we need to work together to protect our coasts because our coasts are moving to the place where a threat is coming upon them. We need to stabilize our coast. What it looks like is having a carbon tax on tax users.
I am not talking about global warming. I am talking about protecting the coast. I’m feeling worried and concerned about the City of Miami. It’s such a fun city. I want to make sure it’s protected in the years to come. Many people can vacation there and for those who want to choose to retire, they can. I am enjoying what Miami is and I want to make sure the level of protection because so many crew ships, industries, and things like that depend upon this and I want to make sure it’s protected. Those industries are vital to us in America. Protection looks like a carbon tax. Protection looks like making these changes in our electrical grid. The narrative is power with, it’s a communication bullseye because that’s the end value.
Others would probably say, “You’re talking about global warming again.” That’s what they would want to frame at us because they can inject more doubt and skepticism that global warming is real. When you reframe it as the problem is carbon, whether it’s getting warm or not, maybe you’re not talking about that, you’re talking about it in a different way. As the communication bullseye are people that are hijacking truth, moving away from center toward the edges and when you argue, are you trying to bring them back to the middle?
I’m trying to bring that back to the middle, which is the primary language of which need are we going to suffer from, which is the most important need that we’re going to suffer from. If the most important need is integrity that I wanted the communication bullseye comes in and I throw the error to the middle, I want to build it around integrity. If it’s about choice, then the communication is like, “I guess we could choose to do it this way. If we choose to do it this way, this group of people will get a certain amount of money and certain amount of benefits, but this other group of people will not do that.” I’m not sure if that’s our best choice.” They’re yearning to make it a black and white discussion. Something they can label, something they can diagnose, something they can put in a box and dismiss.
If you put something in the box, if you allow label and diagnoses to take place then what happens is we’ve got to get off of it. You can’t call President Donald Trump a liar anymore because his population doesn’t believe that. His population believes that he is somebody, that he’s a champion and he’s my champion. I’m going to vote for my champion. It doesn’t matter if it’s Vladimir Putin or any other person that comes into power in the same way. The voting just becomes a Vladimir Putin experience which is a day of celebration where the propaganda has won over a constricted population that only gets and only has certain limits of expression to take place. There are similarities in other countries and I’m not saying it’s all bad. China has done some wonderful things on infrastructure.
They’re taking all the money that we spend in the military. They’re spending it on influence in their own country and influence in other countries. Some of it is a little tragic because they put the country in debt by what they’ve done. That’s a Chinese bridge that was put there and they bought our country somehow because we didn’t have the money to pay them for the bridge. It wasn’t sustainable inside that environment. Both systems have some problems to it but if you and I are not speaking from a place of choice, then it makes it very difficult.
To bring some clarity to this, is choice the best way to rebut the no?
Yes, the choice is the quickest and the best way. You could say this sentence to me. “Bill, would you like to invest in my company with $50,000?”
Bill, would you like to invest in my company with $500,000?
I get to say the word no back to you. No. Say, “Bill, are you going to choose to spend the money elsewhere?”
Bill, are you going to choose to spend your money elsewhere?
Yes. Once you have me saying yes, you can find out what the good reason is behind me not giving you some money. You might get to a point where I don’t have any money to give you or here’s $10,000, $20,000 or $50,000 or whatever on your $500,000 but at least even I said the word no, there’s still a dialogue that’s open. What the Democrats don’t understand at this moment, Nancy Pelosi, she’s not staring down the noes well enough. They’re staring down the noes from the internal place but not from the external place. From the internal place is we’ll get to file a court order. We’re going to do a contempt. We’re going to force you to deliver it instead of the external way. “It looks like the president is still meeting the need for privacy at the expense of truth. I wonder when he’s going to stop doing that. Transparency in government looks like truth, doesn’t it?” “Wouldn’t truth look like providing paperwork to the American public?” I built a narrative around choice, around privacy and around truth. That is a communication bullseye. If any of these candidates, Cory Booker, want to have their breakout moment, if you want to make something stick, modify your language so it does.
I don’t think they know how, Bill.
No, they don’t know how. That’s the sad part about this story, Tom. You and I regrettably are outliers and I’m one of those outliers with over 100,000 hours of using this stuff.
What’s shocking to me is each of these campaigns gets millions and millions of dollars donated to them. They have a budget. They have money to spend. They’re choosing how to spend it to be most effective to achieve their goal, to rise in the polls, to get as far on top as they can as they go. Through this process, it’s going to play out, and they could get help with communication. Every campaign, which has a communication director, do they not teach what you’re doing in college and communication?
No, it has a little bunch of limitations around it as well as the outside environment. This particular communication strategy, these strategies too, the legal profession doesn’t like either because the legal profession is adversarial too.
They’re very black and white, right?
It’s very black and white. Did you break this rule? Did you not break this rule? In my mediation practice, I’ll mediate with a room full of attorneys and say to the attorneys, “Do you want this thing to be a long dental appointment or would you like me to solve this now? In a long dental appointment, you guys are going to get paid the most amount of money but I’m not sure if it’s going to serve both of your clients. There is one client. I’m not sure if it’s going to save most of your clients. If both of your clients would be okay with a moment of privacy, we might get to closure on this quicker but if there’s not enough trust in the room, I would like the attorneys to stay.”
What’s the attorney interested in? One, he’s interested in $1 million and the other one is interested in going away for $200,000. Would you like to try for $1 million from this premise or would you like $200,000 and leave now? Many times the person says, “He’s willing to work with me. Here’s the $200,000. In fact, here’s $300,000. I’m glad we’re not doing it a court case for two and a half years.” By the way, all that money would’ve been given to the attorneys. Our legal system though is good about writing things down, is good at putting the lines and setting up the lines here. When we get somebody that has grown up in a system with all of these different lines and has learned, that he had enough money to outwait his opponent. Donald Trump always had enough money to outwait the person so the other person would go broke. “Take half of what you bill me.”
“Be happy or else we’ll go to court and argue about it for years and you’ll be lucky to get anything.”
He knew that he could play out the legal system. He knew that all he had to do was sit in a deposition and say, “I didn’t read that. I didn’t see that. This is the first time I saw that. My attorney was handling this.” He was always advocating responsibility to others. It’s no surprise that he’s advocating responsibility now. He’s not giving that. Choice is one of those keywords that gives us the power to stand and energize this experience. The next time we’re together, which we can definitely take a look at, is we’re going to talk about and engage the process of being able to communicate specifically to our own internal narratives of mind reading. There’s the mind reading, “I think the president will do this. I have the thought that the president will do that.” Mind reading is overrated. It’s better to step into it rather than make up a story about what you think they would do. They’re going to do this and then they’re going to do that. We’ve got to do a better job of exercising choice and empathy to deal with truth.
Thanks, Bill. That was fun. I hope you did too.
I did. I’m glad. I really appreciate your persistence because this is a big part of what a communication bullseye looks like.
Thank you so much. We’ll be back next time and we’ll dive deeper into what you just shared with us.
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