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The Lost Art of the Great Speech: How to Write It * How to Deliver It by Richard Dowis

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Make them understandable

Sometimes statistics just need to be compared with something that the audience can more easily relate to. For example, a billion is a number that is almost impossible for the typical person to comprehend. And a trillion—well, that really boggles the mind. So if you refer to a trillion dollars, you might as well be speaking a foreign language. Your audience just won't be able to grasp it.

A speech about the cost of the federal government's antiPoverty efforts included this statement:

Since President Johnson launched his idealistic War on Poverty in 1965, this country has expended a whopping $5.4 trillion on programs for the poor. That's a lot of money.

Ho hum. Zzzzzz. Everybody knows $5.4 trillion is a lot of money. So ...

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