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Reblogged:America's Unwitting Fifth Column

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A lengthy article on election advertising includes a passage that probably resonates well beyond the group it discusses:

"We assumed it would be a mover spot, and it just wasn't," McIntosh said. The video had the adverse effect of pushing away not just moderate voters, but also many Democratic-base voters, particularly young people, who find politics tiresome and irrelevant to their lives. "The folks who are younger, they're more skeptical. They're oftentimes just kind of like, Oh, I haven't had the best luck in life. They don't make a ton of money. They haven't got a college degree," said Samarth Bhaskar, a consultant for the group. "So with those groups in particular, we've seen when you put something in front of them that looks like a political ad or a political video, they get turned off right away. And so we tried our best to find other ways to, like, talk to them about these topics." [bold added]
Interestingly, the title of the piece includes the quoted complaint that "Trump is so saturated."

The piece is from the left, which seems from here to be blind to the fact that left-wing commentary (which necessarily includes most of what passes for news reporting these days) is guilty of causing this situation. Trump irritates the left to the point that many can't seem to utter a sentence without his name in it.

And when he doesn't come up by name, there is nonstop scare-mongering of one kind or another with the implication that we need the government to stop the apocalypse du jour. Add to this the fact that the government already runs or meddles with the majority of our affairs in our mixed economy, and it is no wonder that people are so sick of politics that they "turn off" anything that "sounds like a political ad or a political video."

Whatever you think of Trump or Biden, this is a Bad Thing in the long haul.

This is for many reasons I don't intend to explore right now, but it also reminds me of a passage from Ayn Rand that I ran across recently, from a proposed open letter ("To All Innocent Fifth Columnists") she wrote back in 1940:
Image by Tengyart, via Unsplash, license.
The Totalitarians do not want your active support. They do not need it. They have their small, compact, well-organized minority and it is sufficient to carry out their aims. All they want from you is your indifference. The Communists and the Nazis have stated repeatedly that the indifference of the majority is their best ally. Just sit at home, pursue your private affairs, shrug about world problems -- and you are the most effective Fifth Columnist that can be devised. You're doing your part as well as if you took orders consciously from Hitler or from Stalin. And so, you're in it, whether you want to be or not, you're helping the world towards destruction, while moaning and wondering what makes the world such as it is today. You do. [Bold added.] (Journals of Ayn Rand, pp. 348-349)
While I don't think there is any movement working specifically to establish a dictatorship in the United States at present, the logic of many of the dominant ideas people hold lead in that direction, and the closer we get, a real danger isn't just that the "frog" is getting used to increasingly hot water, but also that it has become so done with the people nosily throwing wood under the pot and playing with matches.

Too many Americans are getting too used to tyranny -- and so disgusted with politics at the same time -- that they neither see the need nor have the will to fight back.

-- CAV

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