In Politics Today, It's All About the Narrative

The real political story right now, at the dawn of the Obama administration, is the competition between narratives.

This came to me as I was introduced in a new media panel for the Colorado Senate Republican Caucus. (Vodkapundit Stephen Green was there too and wrote about his thoughts in PJM a few days ago.) During the introduction, State Senator Mike Kopp used the phrase "the narrative" and then corrected himself, suggesting the phrase "the narrative" was overused.

I just about jumped out of my chair to interrupt him. Talking about "the narrative" isn't just a meaningless trope. Understanding the impact of the narrative is essential.

If you control the narrative, you don't just control what gets reported. You control what people see and hear.

For example, have a look at this video:

This is an example of a trance state. Trance states are not some strange mystical thing, only seen with stage hypnotists and swamis; they're actually very common. Trance is just a state of consciousness, induced by some suggestion -- in this case, the simple suggestion that you count the number of passes -- that alters your perception. Alters perception pretty radically, in fact. (Yes, I'm being a little cagey here. Watch the video; it's much more striking than me writing about the video.)