Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Nazi Ballot Influencing

I came across this historical oddity the other day that illustrates how politicians subtly and not so subtly attempt to influence behavior.  The text of this 1938 voting ballot reads roughly: "Do you agree with the reunification of Austria with the German Reich that was enacted on 13 March 1938 and do you vote for the party of our leader; Adolf Hitler? Yes No.”  The different sizes of fonts and size of the yes/no circles speak for themselves.  We all know the outcome of this ballot.  I've not seen anything this overt in elections in the US.  But, since we are in the silly season, the ballot does remind me of the distortions seen in the political commercials now filling the airwaves before the mid-term elections.  Too bad these commercials don't come with truth detectors.

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