Monday, November 08, 2004

Ignorance as Political Strategy

From a New York Times Op-Ed piece today by frequent contributor Bob Herbert....

"I think a case can be made that ignorance played at least as big a role in the election's outcome as values. A recent survey by...University of Maryland found that nearly 70 percent of President Bush's supporters believe that the US has come up with 'clear evidence' that Saddam Hussein was working closely with Al Qaeda. A third of the president's supporters believe weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq. And more than a third believe that a substantial majority of world opinion supported the US-led invasion of Iraq.

This is scary. How do you make a rational political pitch to people who have put that part of their brain on hold?"


At least now I understand why Bush and Cheney kept chanting mantra-like statements about Iraq that had been publicly and repeatedly proven to be untrue. A huge intentionally-uninformed and unread chunk of the electorate actually believed them, despite all evidence. Bush and Cheney reiterating the lies over and over reinforced their wishful fiction as reality in constituents' minds.

There were many times during the campaign when I thought Bush and Cheney were bumbling, unintelligible nutcases. Turns out they are brilliant political strategists. Ignorance was a powerful campaign tool.

One question for the Christians who swallowed and supported these falsehoods and dangerous fantasies.....

Whatever happened to your belief in John 8:32, "...the truth will set you free"?

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