If you want to see propaganda in action, you couldn’t find a much better example than this week’s Republican convention.
The convention has stoked two of people’s primary emotions: fear and rage.
The Days of Fear
I already wrote the other day about how on Monday the Republican painted a picture that made it appear that we are just a hair’s breadth away from being overrun by terrorists even though, with the exception of the Orlando Pulse nightclub massacre, there have been hardly any successful terrorist events here since 9/11. I mentioned 10 of the things that are more likely to kill you than terrorists, including cows, champagne corks and falling coconuts. And no, sharks are not one of them.
No matter, the Republicans want us all to believe that we’re in great peril from terrorists, and that somehow our military needs to be “built up” again, even though we already spend more on the military than the next seven nations combined. This has been verified by Politifact, by the way. So unlike the Republicans, I’m not just pulling statistics out of my ass.
The Days of Rage
The Republicans would have you believe that Hillary Clinton is the worst candidate for office since Adolf Hitler sneaked into the Chancellorship during the Weimar Republic. According to one of their acolytes, Al Baldasaro, a New Hampshire representative who serves on Trump’s veterans’ coalition, “Hillary Clinton should be put in the firing line and shot for treason,” because of the Benghazi incident back in 2012. Chris Christie, of course, tried to “indict” Hillary on a day where the Republican theme was allegedly to “Make America Work Again.”
Hillary Clinton had almost nothing to do with the attack in Benghazi. While it’s true that there were requests made by the Embassy for additional security in Benghazi as elsewhere in the Middle East, those requests were not made to Hillary personally, and they could not be honored largely because the Republicans had underfunded embassies nationwide in their budget battles with President Obama. It’s also true that the Annex Security Team was delayed for about 20 minutes before responding to the attack, that delay was caused by “the top CIA officer in Benghazi,” and had nothing to do with Hillary Clinton.
Sean Smith’s mother might blame Hillary Clinton personally – and we can empathize with her loss – but her rage is completely misplaced. As is the rage of all the other Hillary-hating Republicans, who are proving the adage that “just because I’m paranoid doesn’t meant that they’re not out to get me.” That could be Hillary’s campaign slogan.
Make America One Again
Donald Trump is not going to Make America One Again. He can’t even make the Republican party one again. Ted Cruz, as we know, went off the reservation last night and refused to endorse Trump, instead telling the convention-goers to “vote their conscience,” accompanied by a sustained chorus of boos. This morning Cruz doubled-down on his non-endorsement, saying that he was not a “servile puppy dog.”
So this notion that Donald Trump can make America one again, this is propaganda in its most blatant form.
I mean, let’s be honest: Hillary Clinton is not going to make America one again either. When she gets elected – and she will get elected – it will be with the least political capital of any modern President, and with at least one branch of Congress (the House of Representatives) adamantly opposed to her. Hillary is likely to be the first woman President of the United States, but she also has a good chance of being a one-termer. If she’d had to run against Romney back in 2012, she probably would have lost.
So, that’s being honest. Saying that Trump – this divisive, despicable, Captain of the Clown Car – has any chance of uniting the nation, is complete lunacy, and no sane person should say those words out loud.
It’s as crazy as claiming that Fox News is “fair and balanced.”
Propaganda, it’s on full and naked display at the Republican convention.
 Somewhat amusingly, this outburst has earned Rep. Baldasaro some scrutiny by the Secret Service, since you’re not supposed to threaten the life of a Presidential candidate (or a former President’s spouse) already receiving Secret Service protection.