Politics of Fear? From which Party?

This election year is perhaps more strange than any other (and we have had some STRANGE ones!)  It used to be we would joke about the personalities of the candidates, and they ran on their policy ideas.  This year, they are running on their personalities, and apparently running from their policies!  That said, I want to tackle a couple of the other “strange” things that are happening this time around.

The Democrats have, for a very long time, (read, 4 years) been running around claiming that the Bush Administration, and the Republicans, are running a “politics of fear” only able to be re-elected when the American people are “afraid.”  Well it sure looks to me like the Democrats are doing the same thing.  Oh, they aren’t trying to make us afraid of terrorists.  They are making us fear the economy.  Fear a loss of jobs.  Fear each other.  Take, for instance, this comment from Obama’s acceptance speech:

Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less. More of you have lost your homes and even more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can’t afford to drive, credit card bills you can’t afford to pay, and tuition that’s beyond your reach.

I am sure you see it.  We should be afraid of what may happen to us if we don’t elect Obama.  In fact, the whole first third of his speech (and of every speech) was designed to instill fear into our hearts.

Hey–I am not saying it isn’t a great style.  It works.  It is a formula for speech-writing that has been shown through the ages to be successful.

It is also a speech designed to highlight one party, and their vision of the future, in comparison to another.  I believe we call that “being partisan.”  I don’t think anyone faults Obama and the Democrats for being partisan.  After all, it was a “Democrat Party Convention” after all.  But what is surprising was the criticism put foward by the Obama camp as read in the Mercury News:

Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton called the speech “well-delivered, but written by George Bush’s speech writer and sounds exactly like the same divisive partisan attacks we’ve heard from George Bush for the last eight years.”

Hmm.  partisan attacks?  Let’s see… what could those be?

Because next week, in Minnesota, the same party that brought you two terms of George Bush and Dick Cheney will ask this country for a third.

For over two decades, he’s subscribed to that old, discredited Republican philosophy – give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else.

You see, we Democrats have a very different measure of what constitutes progress in this country.

The speech goes on and on with these sorts of dichotomies. They (the Republicans) don’t care about, want to hurt you, only want to help their cronies.. but WE (the Democrats) care about you, and are willing to do what it takes to help you.

That, my Fellow Americans. Is partisan divisiveness. Don’t complain that Republicans do that, when you did it the week before.


3 thoughts on “Politics of Fear? From which Party?

  1. I was actually surprised how much self-identification with dems was at the convention last week. The “we Democrats” bit was not the best thing to do unless you are just willing to trash the swing voters or are confident that they will want to be a Democrat too. Whatever it is, I thought it was a strange mantra to say at the expense of “fellow Americans” which we will hear from McCain much more than the word Republican tonight. I don’t think Palin or Rudy used the word Republican at all now that I think of it…

  2. . . . and what to make of the insane screeching over Sarah Palin?

    I think the psychiatrists call it “transference” (when an individual attributes their own faults to others; ie “I am a lying sleazebag therefore everyone must be lying sleazebags” kind of subconscious “logic.”)?

    The attacks on “Pentacostals” is already moving into high gear.

    I left the “one party system” years ago; as an outsider though you can’t help but notice that their are at least “tactical” differences between Demmicans adn Republicrats.

    One party is more evil than incompetent; the other is more incompetent than evil.

    What a “choice” [sic].

    I would side with the founding fathers and choose incompetence and gridlock if I could . . .

  3. If you don’t know the difference between . . .

    1) “creationism” vs. “intelligent design;”
    2) “I will bend others to God’s will” vs. “I will bend to God’s will;”
    3) “Fatalism” vs. “Predestination;”
    4) “I am an instrument of Gods’ plan” vs. “I am chosen to be a witness to Gods’ plan;”
    5) “Ban these books” vs. “Should kids really have access to internet porn?;”
    6) “Fire my sisters husband” vs. “Do you think we should let a guy who tases children and slaps his wife around run around with a gun in a state troopers uniform;”
    7) “Let’s build a bridge to nowhere” vs. “Let’s support an omnibus transportation infrastructure plan;”

    etc. etc. etc.

    then what?

    This has *really* gotten ridiculous.

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