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The Pentadic Analysis Example

All political artifacts have both direct meaning and hidden motives. In fact, although political leaders and speakers have to address the dominant social needs and concerns, they mostly try to achieve their political objectives and goals. It is reasonable to use the CNN interview with Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson for the analysis. The pentadic analysis as a form of criticism may be applicable in this context to formulate the well-supported arguments and responses. Gary Johnson is successful in outlining the major problems in the programs of Republican and Democratic candidates; however, he is unable to present the Libertarian program in the coherent and persuasive form.

The artifact reflects Gary Johnson’s analysis of the existing political climate in the US and offering the new Libertarian alternative to the general public. At the beginning, he explicitly states that neither Republicans nor Democrats can offer the effective and long-term solutions to the major social and economic problems. He persuasively explains the inability of other political leaders to address the key issues as they appeal to the governmental power in order to initiate their reforms (CNN). However, the work of the government presupposes the use of scarce social as well as economic resources and the growing redistribution of efforts. All these initiatives lead to the negative impact on the social and economic development of the entire society.


Moreover, other candidates do not pay close attention to the issues related to people’s civil rights. On the contrary, they agree to impose additional restrictions on civil rights to promote national security or other goals (CNN). Therefore, Gary Johnson states that only the Libertarian program with the focus on the limited government and preservation of citizens’ rights and liberties offers a consistent and effective approach towards the major public concerns.

The pentadic analysis allows examining the meaning and implications of the selected artifact in detail. First of all, it is reasonable to specify terms. The first is an agent who fulfills the role of the key protagonist (Sangalang 142). Thus, Gary Johnson is an agent in this case as he promotes his political views through developing the corresponding political messages. The second one is an act, and it refers to the actions performed by the protagonist in order to reach his/her objectives (Sangalang 142). In the analyzed case, the key messages provided in the interview represent the act under consideration.

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The third term is an agency, and it refers to the means used by the protagonist for accomplishing the selected act (Sangalang 143). Gary Johnson utilizes the combination of logical arguments and emotional appeals to promote his message. On the one hand, the politician demonstrates the inability of Republican and Democratic leaders to achieve their objectives due to the complete neglect of the basic economic principles and laws. Moreover, the violation of people’s civil liberties constitutes a much bigger threat in comparison with national security or other similar issues. On the other hand, he utilizes emotional appeals in some of his messages stressing the inefficiencies of other candidates (CNN). It seems that Gary Johnson realizes that a substantial fraction of Americans does not support any candidate. Thus, if they face a new alternative, they will be more open to supporting him/her even if they lack the proper understanding of his/her political and economic program.

The fourth term is a scene where the act takes place (Sangalang 143). In general, there are two dimensions of a scene in a given case. Firstly, it refers to the physical conditions of the place of the CNN interview. Secondly, it refers to the broad social and political scene. Moreover, Gary Johnson tries to maximize the social perception of the scene stressing the significance and responsibility of correct political choices for the future of the country (CNN). As the inconsistencies in the programs of other candidates are clear, there is a greater likelihood that citizens with a high degree of social responsibility will vote in favor of the Libertarian candidate.

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The fifth element of the analysis is the purpose of the act, and it incorporates the expected outcomes (Sangalang 144). Taking into account the existing political climate in the country, it does not seem likely that Gary Johnson believes that he will be elected as the next US President. However, he may pursue the following objectives. Firstly, comparatively high rates of social support will create the solid foundation for the subsequent political development and progress. It may be utilized in the future elections or other political events. Secondly, Gary Johnson aims to promote the libertarian ideas among the US citizens. It is extremely important regardless of the next US President because political leaders will have to take into account the dominant social views about the scope of the government and the proper modes of economic strategies.

It is also reasonable to assess the major strengths and weaknesses of Gary Johnson’s strategy implemented in the artifact under examination. The key strength refers to his ability to outline the key similarities between Republican and Democratic candidates. Gary Johnson has indicated that despite their rhetoric, the ultimate means used by both parties are almost identical (CNN). For this reason, it is necessary to search for some real alternatives that may improve the situation. In general, Gary Johnson is successful in utilizing negativity as a tool for outlining the disadvantages of his key opponents.

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However, the substantial weakness of his interview refers to his inability to present the essence of the libertarian philosophy or political program in a persuasive and consistent manner. It can be appealing only to people already familiar with the basic economic, social, and political views supported by Libertarians. Correspondingly, those people who do not have the proper understanding of the issues under consideration may face substantial difficulties with comprehending the relationships between civil rights, economic freedom, and limited government (CNN). Therefore, even if they find Gary Johnson’s general criticism of his opponents to be reasonable and justified, they may still experience doubts about the advocated measures.

Thus, Gary Johnson’s strategy is effective only in strengthening the beliefs and choices of individuals already supporting libertarian views. However, it is highly ineffective in affecting and changing the preferences of other population groups. In other words, Gary Johnson’s selection of the target audience seems to be incorrect. He should focus on a broader audience that considers the positions of different parties and tries to select the alternative that addresses its specific needs. The high level of abstractions and numerous statements about economic liberty and citizens’ rights do not offer effective solutions to the majority of the population.

To summarize, the analyzed artifact represents Gary Johnson’s attempt to maximize his political influence and the role of libertarian ideas in the US society. The speaker has outlined the major problems and logical inconsistencies in the programs developed by his opponents. He has indicated that their similarities exceed their differences, and they cannot offer an effective solution to the most urgent social and economic issues. However, Gary Johnson’s presentation of his political views and libertarian ideology has appeared to be unpersuasive and unsuccessful. Due to the incorrect selection of the target audience, the ultimate strategy has not allowed reaching the maximum possible influence. In general, the pentadic analysis has proved to be an effective analytical tool for examining and criticizing political artifacts.

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