Jackie on the corner isn’t sure what he’s going to do when 2020 rolls around. He says trump hasn’t made America Great. But maybe he needs longer than four years.” Jackie, I tell him, America was great in the first place and still is. But what he’s doing is dismantling this country brick by brick.
“Yeah,” says Jackie. It’s all Hillary’s fault.”
He has a point. If some normal person had run against trump, he or she would have won. So in a way, yeah. Others say it was Jeff Zucker, president of CNN. He gave trump so much air time that everyone just squandered their votes.
The real problem with this “president” is he doesn’t understand the job and doesn’t distinguish between truth and not-truth. You may be saying “yes, but all politicians lie. It’s what they do.” And that’s true. But most of them either admit it when cornered or walk it back or otherwise wriggle out of the net.
He’s the next best thing to Goebbels when it comes to “the big lie,” which means repeating the same thing over and over and over until people start to believe it. If you yelp that the moon is made of green cheese long enough, people will sign on. Even if you have to say you have proof there were bits of cheese on Neil Armstrong’s boots when he returned to earth.
Adolf’s propaganda minister had more in his arsenal than the big lie. He taught people that when you set the rules of the game and erect the framework, you win.
Example: Many trump supporters are anti-abortion though trump himself never was until he started running for office. But they don’t call it anti-abortion, they call it “pro life.”
Aren’t most people pro life? If you don’t know, ask anyone whether they’d prefer life or death. We have accepted the euphemist expression “pro life” for anti abortion. It’s much easier to sell.
The opposition has yet to catch on to speaking in code. Until it finds a better way of saying “Medicare for all” or “single payer,” there’s no chance of selling that.
President trump is an evangelist promising a white-dominated heaven on earth if only you believe in him and take him into your life. Eat your hearts out, Billy Graham, Pat Robertson, and the rest of that crowd of snake oil salesmen (and the occasional woman. Tammy Faye Bakker and Aimee Semple McPherson were that job’s diversity.)
We need a blue version of the hat. We need to undermine the Great Underminer. His core supporters -- his “base” -- is far smaller than the number of potential voters. And they’re his dewy-eyed prom date, even though they know he’s a bad boy. He holds them in his arms. They look up at him adoringly. He has plans for them when the music stops. And for us.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2019