"And so," he said, "at 11 a.m. on a Tuesday, a prominent American politician spoke to Americans about race as though they were adults."
And that's all it really comes down to. While Republicans are the ones using buzzwords to describe Democratic priorities as "nanny states" and so forth, it's the Republicans and their media mouthpieces who create these buzzwords in order to dumb down our society to witless obedience. And it's succeeded.
(Would it be cliche to make an Orwellian Newspeak reference here?)
Bush and Karl Rove thought so low of their base in 2004 they put an anti-gay rights measure on 11 ballots, most of which were on states they knew they'd win anyway, just to make sure they won the popular vote. Ohio had it, too, in order to tip the electoral college. He thought so low of the American people (correctly) that he got us to buy duct tape to keep the terrorists' poisonous gases out of our homes in 2003. He hated us so much, he raised a fictitious terror alert color level when his Presidential opponent was up in the polls and created Reaganesque terms for our supposed enemies, like "Axis of Evil" (although at the time he called Iran part of this axis, they were assisting us in taking out the Taliban in Afghanistan. Halliburton was cutting deals with the Iranian government as late as 2003.)
Somewhere in Pakistan, Osama bin Laden is still laughing.
I thought Americans were sick and tired of being treated like children by bullies. I'm still unclear as to whether I was right.
Find any link from Drudge to a message board and you'll see some of the most vile comments you can imagine. You won't believe how many people with the gift of the internet really believe Barack Obama is a Muslim, a racist, and anti-American. Even if they don't believe that, they say it (kind of like how Phony Outrage pundits/actors just say things for ratings) and just saying it might be worse. Ignorance is more admirable than dishonesty.
I've lived somewhat of a sheltered life, in that I've never really been out of the northeast longer than a week at a time. I'm used to people agreeing with me, or, if not, at least conceding things like, "Who cares? If they want to get married, let them get married," or "I don't care that he cheated on his wife. He was a bad president because of the policies he put forth."
There are people who are willing to force themselves to believe that almost 4,000 dead Americans and countless dead Iraqis is "worth it" five years and a re-introduction of Baathists into the Iraq government after the fact. There are people who think warrantless domestic surveillance pales in comparison to not being able to smoke in restaurants.
There are people who think Rev. Ted Haggard cured himself of "gayness."
There's Larry Craig apologists.
On the other side of things, there are people who believe 9/11 was conducted by Reptilian Humanoids taking a human form in the U.S. government, which actually might be more likely than Larry Craig enjoying sex with his female wife in a bedroom.
I don't think any one of the 30-or-so percent of Americans who support the war, the surge, the tax cuts, whatever, actually believe in it. At least no one who keeps up with the news. They know Iraq has been a neo-conservative pet project, planned since at least 1993. They know Bush doesn't believe in his war on terror. (If he did, he would have secured the borders on September 12, 2001.) Our country is so divided, people will believe anything as long as it makes them consistent. Truth, be damned.
2004 proved that being wrong all the time is more important to Americans than correcting yourself when you're wrong. That, and John Kerry was a terrible candidate.
The Republicans were able to control the conversation and reverse common thinking. I can't be sure when I say this, but I'll bet there are places where more people believed Bush served in Vietnam than Kerry. Meanwhile, Bush protested the war in the most extreme form: going AWOL from National Guard duty.