Facts are no match for a compelling narrative, says Jonathan Green. Despite the efforts of left leaning bloggers, conservatives are winning arguments and elections because they have better stories.
Voters see themselves as struggling with an ever rising cost of living, the federal government mired in debt and the parliament paralysed by the lack of governing majority. According to Green, none of these things is true. But against a "conservative political machine happy to deal with well-calculated and skillfully deployed impressions", truth is no defence:
The blogosphere is filled with number crunchers, graph bloggers and fact checkers. The picture they provide is lucid, accurate, and challenging to many of the familiar political tropes.
But it is the tropes that leave the lasting public impression. The frustration for the left is the lingering impression that facts ought, in the best of all possible worlds, to get in the way of the story. Trouble is, the story is increasingly the story.
What works politically is in fact a compelling, ahem, narrative – whether it be manufactured from fact or fiction is not really to the point.
So here we are in chapter one of a gripping tale with heroic wonk bloggers battling against conservative spin merchants and the mainstream media they understand so well. Will our heroes be defeated? Will they embrace the tactics of their opponents and be lured over to the dark side? Or will they turn to the light side of the Force and use the power of narrative for good?