The Reporter’s Primary Trick


Force someone to reduce a complex set of ideas to a sound bite, then develop a straw man criticism of the sound bit that will attract attention by violating the moral intuitions of as many people as possible.

Remember, the press is always lying. They are all the product of the Culture of Critique and Critical Theory, not the product of western Natural Law and truthful testimony. They are gossips for profit, not jurors.


Give moral answers, general ‘goals’, and sew uncertainty as to details, so that the other side comes to the table having prepared for a multitude of eventualities, that make it costly and time consuming to obtain agreement upon.

Feign preference for any of a set of ideas, meanwhile simply listing a priority of available terms that you are willing to accept.

Bring an ultimate decider into the room, and then leave the other side scrambling to develop consensus, as you wear them down.

Strike a deal, and when they come back to the table for more accuse them of bad faith, unethical conduct, incompetence, and disorganization.

State your position as take it or leave it because the other side is not serious. Meanwhile keep leaking to the imbecilic press and whomever else is engaged in gossip for a living, that the other side is incompetent and dishonest.

Walk away, say what you left on the table, and do what you left on the table that is in your interest.

Curt Doolittle

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