Sunday, July 31, 2011

Re-subscribe to the false dichotomy (no thanks)

Do you sometimes wonder if dramas like the debt ceiling crisis are manufactured in order to sway your sympathies? To keep you believing, for instance, that there's a huge, major difference between corporate Democrats and corporate Republicans?

For example, here are the sidebar ads that Google selected to show me next to results for my "debt ceiling crisis" search:


  1. The Debt Ceiling "Excuse"
    Don't Let Sen Snowe Use The Debt
    Ceiling To Cut Medicare. Call Her!
  2. Obama Debt Ceiling Plan
    Act now: don't let the GOP play
    political games with our economy.

Yesterday I found this letter in my inbox, and it made me think about the effects of false dichotomy and personification working in tandem to bewilder the American voter:

Got Obama’s back?

John Boehner and his Tea Party cronies will do anything – and I mean anything – to cripple President Obama and win an election. They don't care if we crash into the debt ceiling and ruin our economy. Their strategy is so transparent and cynical, Republican House leaders even showed their members a scene from a movie with the line, "we’re gonna hurt some people."

It's utterly shameful how far they're willing to go to stay in power. And it seems like the rest of the country is starting to notice.

Now is the time for Democrats like us to show that we will never, ever bring our economy to the brink of catastrophe – or worse – just to satiate the most unhinged members of the radical Tea Party fringe.

Republicans will stop at nothing to destroy President Obama. Give to the DGA today to show you have his back.

Click here to rush $5 or more to the DGA. We'll spend your money in the key swing states and show these Republicans that putting Tea Party fanaticism before patriotism is just plain wrong.

Critical Deadline: Less than 36 hours to raise $15,000. Stand with Obama - Don't let the Tea Party Destroy Our Values. Contribute Today.

Their hatred for our president has so blinded them that they're throwing centuries of American values out the window. They're willing to take a chance on crashing into our debt ceiling, plunging the economy into chaos, and costing us millions of jobs.

We have to fight back immediately.

Colm O'Comartun
Executive Director
Democratic Governors Association

© 2011 Democratic Governors Association

Paid for by the Democratic Governors Association. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. Contributions are not tax deductible.
 Ah, the smell of money on the evening breeze as election season approaches.

And even though it was sent from just an info address, and even though I have no idea why I am even on their mailing list, I replied:

Dear Colm,
I do not have Pres. Obama's back. He is one of the worst presidents I've ever held my nose and voted for. His record is abysmal, especially in areas like the conduct of air strikes on civilians, and on civil liberties, education, and immigration -- all places where the executive branch has some room to act effectively.

I was thrilled to see a Black person in the White House because African-Americans really deserved that milestone, and because it encouraged more young people to aspire to higher education. But with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer at a galloping rate, there will be little opportunity for most youth suffering from institutionalized racism to ever achieve financial security. Or for our country to achieve domestic security, for that matter.


Why did I hold my nose in November '08? Because after he had clinched the nomination to run for president, Senator Obama voted yes on that year's war supplemental funding bill, voted yes to give immunity to telecom$ that helped the Bush administration spy on U.S. citizens, and tipped his hand about his intention to escalate in Afghanistan. Why didn't I vote for a third party candidate? Partly because Noam Chomsky warned that McCain was raring to attack Iran -- which I feel certain will be an utter catastrophe if it happens -- and partly because I overheard a high school freshman say to another freshman wearing a campaign button for McCain, "Do you want the world to come to an end?"

Now, with the bombing of Libya, and the extrajudicial punishment of whistleblower Bradley Manning, and the secret CIA prison in Mogadishu, and etc. piling up on Obama's watch, no amount of nose holding could contain the stench.

And the bleating of Democrats about the supposed big difference between their party and the other corporate party will become the background noise of the coming election season.

Who to vote for? I wish Ann Wright were on the ballot.
Retired Colonel and State Department officer Ann Wright, Washington DC, March, 2011.

No comments: