10 September 2008

Republican Campaign Strategy ... More Bush/Rove Reliance on Bullshit & Lies ...

The Diane Rehm show this morning has a session on how "unfair" the press is being to poor Sarah Palin. As is her wont, Rehm has bent over backwards to accommodate the right wingers. As always, her guests are a handful of journalists and one right wing ideologue, in this instance Heather Higgins, chair of the board, the Independent Women's Forum. This is a persistent pattern on Rehm's part (although often she'll have a couple of right-wing ideologues 'offset' by a journalist). Pathetic.

In any case, there is a story from today's Washington Post on press coverage of the campaigns. Amidst the back and forth about the truth or falsity of this or that charge I noticed this comment:

"John Feehery, a Republican strategist, said the campaign is entering a stage in which skirmishes over the facts are less important than the dominant themes that are forming voters' opinions of the candidates.

"The more the target New York Times and The Washington Post go after Sarah Palin, the better off she is, because there's a bigger truth out there and the bigger truths are she's new, she's popular in Alaska and she is an insurgent," Feehery said. "As long as those are out there, these little facts don't really matter."

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Blogger Stan B. said...

Once again, it's sanity & reason v fear & emotion...

And as smart and charismatic as Obama is, unless he wakes up and realizes he's in a street fight, he's gonna go down in flames a la: Carter, Dukakis, Gore, Kerry...

Republicans got this down cold- appeal to the most basic, primitive fears and emotions and you got 'em by the short hairs each and every time!!!

10 September, 2008 11:57  
Blogger robby said...

This recalls a NYT article from a few years ago: The [White House senior aide] said that guys like me were "in what we call the reality-based community," which he defined as people who "believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality." I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. "That's not the way the world really works anymore," he continued. "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."

That article and the one you quoted of course bring to mind Harry Frankfurt's essay "On Bullshit." He writes, "[The Bullshitter] does not reject the authority of the truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it. He pays no attention to it at all. By virtue of this bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are."

10 September, 2008 15:10  
Blogger Jim Johnson said...

robby, I ought to have added my 'bullshit' label to the post (I now have) since the Frankfurt book is a running reference for me. Thanks for the riminder. JJ

10 September, 2008 15:53  

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