Beware of the Delphi Technique — The Underhanded Manipulation Strategy Used on Parents Who Stand Against Common Core / CSCOPE

By Donna Garner:

Someone wrote to me today and said that the CSCOPE/TESCCC/ESC establishment is using the Delphi Technique to manipulate the parent meetings being held around the state.  If that is the case, then people need to become highly aware of the Delphi Technique and how to defend themselves from being manipulated by it.

I was delphied when I served on the writing team for English / Language Arts / Reading curriculum standards (TEKS) from 1995 – 1997.

Following is an article written by Albert V. Burns in which he describes the Delphi Technique:

“The Delphi Technique: Let’s Stop Being Manipulated!”

By Albert V. Burns

More and more, we are seeing citizens being invited to “participate” in various forms of meetings, councils, or boards to“help determine” public policy in one field or another. They are supposedly being included to get ”input” from the public to help officials make final decisions on taxes, education, community growth or whatever the particular subject matter might be.

Sounds great, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, surface appearances are often deceiving.

You, Mr. or Mrs. Citizen, decide to take part in one of these meetings. Generally, you will find that there is already someone designated to lead or “facilitate” the meeting. Supposedly, the job of the facilitator is to be a neutral, non-directing helper to see that the meeting flows smoothly. Actually, he or she is there for exactly the opposite reason: to see that the conclusions reached during the meeting are in accord with a plan already decided upon by those who called the meeting.

The process used to “facilitate” the meeting is called the Delphi Technique.

This Delphi Technique was developed by the RAND Corporation for the U.S. Department of Defense back in the 1950s. It was originally intended for use as a psychological weapon during the cold war. However, it was soon recognized that the steps of Delphi could be very valuable in manipulating ANY meeting toward a predetermined end.

How does the process take place? The techniques are well developed and well defined. First, the person who will be leading the meeting, the facilitator or Change Agent must be a likable person with whom those participating in the meeting can agree or sympathize. It is, therefore, the job of the facilitator to find a way to cause a split in the audience, to establish one or a few of the people as “bad guys” while the facilitator is perceived as the “good guy.”

Facilitators are trained to recognize potential opponents and how to make such people appear aggressive, foolish, extremist, etc. Once this is done, the facilitator establishes himself or herself as the “friend” of the rest of the audience. The stage is now set for the rest of the agenda to take place.

At this point, the audience is generally broken up into “discussion—or ‘breakout’—groups” of seven or eight people each. Each of these groups is to be led by a subordinate facilitator. Within each group, discussion takes place of issues, already decided upon by the leadership of the meeting. Here, too, the facilitator manipulates the discussion in the desired direction, isolating and demeaning opposing viewpoints.

Generally, participants are asked to write down their ideas and disagreements with the papers to be turned in and“compiled” for general discussion after the general meeting is reconvened.

This is the weak link in the chain, which you are not supposed to recognize. Who compiles the various notes into the final agenda for discussion? Ahhhh! Well, it is those who are running the meeting.

How do you know that the ideas on your notes were included in the final result? You don’t! You may realize that your idea was not included and come to the conclusion that you were probably in the minority. Recognize that every other citizen member of this meeting has written his or her likes or dislikes on a similar sheet of paper and they, too, have no idea whether their ideas were “compiled” into the final result! You don’t even know if anyone’s ideas are part of the final “conclusions” presented to the reassembled group as the “consensus” of public opinion.

Rarely does anyone challenge the process, since each concludes that he or she was in the minority and different from all the others. So, now, those who organized the meeting in the first place are able to tell the participants and the rest of the community that the conclusions, reached at the meeting, are the result of public participation.

Actually, the desired conclusions had been established, in the back room, long before the meeting ever took place. There are variations in the technique to fit special situations but, in general, the procedure outlined above takes place. The natural question to ask here is: If the outcome was preordained before the meeting took place, why have the meeting?

Herein lies the genius of this Delphi Technique. It is imperative that the general public believe that this program is theirs! They thought it up! They took part in its development! Their input was recognized! If people believe that the program is theirs, they will support it. If they get the slightest hint that the program is being imposed upon them, they will resist.

This very effective technique is being used, over and over and over, to change our form of government from the representative republic, intended by the Founding Fathers, into a“participatory democracy.” Now, citizens chosen at large are manipulated into accepting preset outcomes while they believe that the input they provided produced the outcomes which are now theirs! The reality is that the final outcome was already determined long before any public meetings took place, determined by individuals unknown to the public.

Can you say “Conspiracy?

“These “Change Agents” or “Facilitators”can be beaten! They can be beaten using their own methods against them. Because it is so important, I will repeat the suggestions I gave in the last previous column.

One: Never, never lose your temper! Lose your temper and lose the battle, it is that simple! Smile, if it kills you to do so. Be courteous at all times. Speak in a normal tone of voice.

Two: Stay focused! Always write your question or statement down in advance to help you remember the exact manner in which your question or statement was made. These agents are trained to twist things to make anyone not acceding to their agenda look silly or aggressive. Smile, wait till the change agent gets done speaking and then bring them back to your question.

If they distort what you said, simply remind those in the group that what he or she is saying is not what you asked or said and then repeat, verbatim, from your notes the original objection.

Three: Be persistent! Wait through any harangues and then repeat the original question.

Four: Don’t go alone! Get as many friends or relatives who think as you do, to go along with you to the meeting. Have each person ”armed” with questions or statements which all generally support your central viewpoint. Don’t sit together as a group! Spread out through the audience so that your group does not seem to be a group.

Five: When the facilitator or change agent avoids answering your question and insists that he must move on so everyone may have a chance to speak, your own agents in the audience can then ask questions, worded differently, but still with the same meaning as yours. They can bring the discussion back to your original point. They could even point out, in a friendly manner, that the agent did not really answer your question. The more the agent avoids your question, and the more your friends bring that to the attention of the group, the more the audience will shift in your favor. To quote my informant: “Turn the technique back on them and isolate the change agent as the kook.” I’ve done it and seen steam come out of the ears of those power brokers in the wings who are trying to shove something down the citizen’s throats.

And it’s so much fun to watch the moderator squirm and lose his cool, all while trying to keep a smile on his face. Now that you understand how meetings are manipulated, let’s show them up for the charlatans which they are.

Related: Saul Alinsky, Cloward-Piven and the Delphi Technique


11 responses to “Beware of the Delphi Technique — The Underhanded Manipulation Strategy Used on Parents Who Stand Against Common Core / CSCOPE

  1. Pingback: Beware of the Delphi Technique — The Underhanded Manipulation Strategy Used on Parents Who Stand Against Common Core / CSCOPE | Wading Across

  2. But don’t be suckered into thinking anyone is using the Delphi technique if you get into an issue and find you’ve been badly misiniformed.

    Also, look up “poisoning the well.” We have a democratic republic courtesy of the Constitution, and it requires that every state have a republican form of government. Public meetings, town meetings, hearings, and other forms of public “input” is essential to the operation of our nation, and state and county, city and school board governments.

    Don’t let scare propaganda left over from the anti-war movement scare you from learning what’s really going on, and participating in government.

  3. May we use your article to reference Delphi? Thanks.

  4. I was in a church that did this!!!

  5. They have been using this technique for Sustainable endeavors in NJ….but last year some people were ready for it and fought it tooth and nail and it didn’t succeed; now they changed their tactics to just presentations and no Q&A and they repackaged it as good for the minority community, who by the way it hurts the most.

  6. I learned about this technique many years ago from Phyllis Schaffley. She is very much informed & talked about school boards/teachers using this method to push “Outcome Based Education”. They would bring parents & even some students into meeting rooms to ask for their comments/input, yet unbeknownst to the parents & students, they already had hundreds of pages of booklets made up to implement “Outcome Based Education”. If anyone did speak up against it at the meetings, they quickly isolated that person to make him/her look like some kind of crazy, out of touch person.
    I got to see some of the agenda pushing business/methods at a local college, when my oldest daughter was enrolled. One evening, my daughter had an extra credit class meeting at a small college in which they were going to talk about “global warming”. Well, I knew about a lot of the garbage that they use to push the “global warming” agenda. Therefore, I prayed & did a 15 minute search online, because I only learned of the meeting a short time beforehand. I printed up a few articles, went to the meeting, & prayed. I didn’t have anyone with me, other than my daughter & they did not know that I was her mother. I didn’t want them to give her a hard time, so I sat in the back. I’m telling you it was by the grace of God that every time they tried to pass along some “garbage” on “global warming”, I had the exact rebuttal right in front of my eyes, even though I had not had time to fully read all of the information. It was amazing! I kept calm & smiled & waited my turn & held my hand up, waiting as they ignored me & then finally called on me. They were confounded by my answers & information…so much so that one of the panelists asked my name & where I got my information. When I told him that I found it on the internet, he tried to put it down by basically saying that anyone can find all kinds of nonsense on the internet. Of course, he did not let me respond to his put down statement, so I put my hand up & waited & waited until someone on the panel finally called on me. I told them that there is a lot of very good information on the internet, including doctoral dissertations & that thousands of scientists came out against “global warming” agenda claims. In fact, some doctors in Canada warned the US not to sign any agreement with the UN regarding “global warming”, because it was a ploy by the UN to take over power. They said ever since they signed the treaty with the UN in regards to “global warming”, they could never meet the standards & were being fined extra large fines. They warned about the sly take-over. Unfortunately, I’m not the best talker, but thanks be to God, I had the articles in front of me with the most pertinent information to dispel their nonsense. I had information about the UN conference in Kioto, Japan & guess what they brought up at the meeting!?! 😉 Unfortunately, I cannot do the articles justice in this comment line. Anyway, I had them rattled & the students were completely surprised that someone was saying anything against the rank & file teachers/”agenda pushing leaders”. They even turned around & asked me where I got my information, so I told them they could have my papers & also suggested that they should look it up for themselves on the Internet.
    The panel of agenda pushers/”teachers” were upset. They didn’t know what to do with me, because I was patient, polite, & had the correct information to dispel all of their agenda pushing. In fact, at one point, I asked them why they brought along the Psychology professor for the panel on “global warming”!?! I wondered aloud why he was “Needed” there! Oh my it was something to see! It was electric! LOL!
    Since my daughter had to finish the class, I never gave her away in the room, although, she would have been happy with that. The next day, her classmates went on a field trip in a van. On the road, her professor was driving & he asked the students what they thought about that “woman” at the meeting & how should they go about shutting up someone like that! My daughter said that they got to the point of talking about some type of bodily harm & even dismemberment & she shouted, “That’s my Mom!” She said her professor, at the wheel, turned around & did a double-take & she never heard the subject change so quickly in her life! I forget now, but he later apologized to me, via e-mail, I believe. I could have followed up with it, but thought that it was enough for me to get the students to think about it all & not just easily swallow their agenda swill. I sometimes wonder if many of the students ever discovered what a con job they were trying to pull on them, after seeing some more undoing of the “global warming” agenda in the news & on the Internet.
    Bottom line: the “global warming” agenda is actually not about whether or not the planet has warming trends, it’s about using fear to get control. …& money. Period.
    Thank you for your great article & the great idea for tactics. I would have loved to have some friends planted in the group for the meeting, Unfortunately, I did not know about it until a short time before it started. Anyway, thanks be to God & the Internet, I was able to stump & hopefully if not stop, at least, slow down the agenda pushing & help the students to be able to see through the agenda pushing tactics/methods. At least the students were questioning & not just swallowing the swill.
    I guess the agenda pushers now have to get to them at the youngest ages & push their evil agendas through Common Core, or as I like to call it, “Communist Core”. Please, pray for America. Thanks.

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