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"(Greenspan) had a way of speaking that made you think he knew exactly what he was talking about at all times," said Senator Tom Harkin, a Democrat from Iowa. "He was able to say things in a way that made people not want to question him on anything, like he knew it all. He was the Oracle, and who were you to question him?"
A classic example of rhetoric trumping reality.  There was a reason rhetoric was one of the seven liberal arts.  Barron's ran an article earlier this year which questioned Greenspan's academic credentials.  What cannot be questioned are his rhetorical credentials. Rhetoric is what enabled him to surf the crest of the Chicago School neo-classical economics wave set in motion by Friedman.

While I do not recommend that all college undergraduates be required to take a course on rhetroic, I do think that they should be required to take a course that alerts them to the power of that art to win on style arguments that should loose on substance.  The dominance of Friedman and Greenspan and the techniques used by Greenspan should be combed and used as exhibit A.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 13th, 2008 at 01:44:33 AM EST
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