They Aren’t Buying Conspiracy Theories-They’re Buying the Lie That Democrats Are the Enemy
The Capitol insurrectionists were not interested in conservative ideals. They were not interested in electing or supporting Republicans. They were there to stop the so-called steal, but were they more interested in stopping “The Libs?”
Those extremists and many Republicans have been hearing the decades-long drumbeat of negative messages about Democrats.
Decades-Long Big Lie: Far-Right Convinces Many to Hate Democrats
We talk about how they getting their jollies “owning the Libs” but it’s far more dangerous than that. Many of those who have listened to FCN, individual Republicans, and other right-wing media and talk show hosts have come to believe that Democrats and liberals are their enemies.
The radical right media has run a 15+ year systematic campaign with one simple goal — Convince viewers that Democrats are the enemy.
On a daily basis, they offer inuendos and outright lies about those on the other side of the aisle. It’s been a successful campaign that has convinced many to not trust Democrats and to hate liberals.
In 2019, a friend told me she was upset to find out that her sister believed that Democrats hate America. Astonished, I asked her why she thought that? My friend told me her sister watches Fox News and that’s what they say.
People like my friend’s sister have had a series of lies pounded into their psyche again and again. The calculated conditioning of viewers and listeners has been gradual and yet relentless. Those who have been most vulnerable to this messaging now believe almost anything they are told about “the Libs.”
Conspiracy Theories That Are Fueling Polarization & Creating Unrest
Yes, there’s a dangerous and unfathomable phenomenon in our country — the surfacing and growth of wildly bizarre conspiracy theories.
“CueAnnon” (purposely misspelled) is a baseless conspiracy theory whose followers believe that Satan-worshiping Democrats, Hollywood celebrities and billionaires run the world while engaging in pedophilia, human trafficking and the harvesting of a supposedly life-extending chemical from the blood of abused children. The contemporary antecedent is Pizzagate, the conspiracy theory that went viral during the 2016 presidential campaign when right-wing news outlets and influencers promoted the baseless idea that references in the stolen emails of Clinton campaign manager, Podesta were a secret code for a child trafficking ring. The theory touched off serious harassment of the restaurant and its employees, culminating in a December 2016 shooting by a man who travelled to the restaurant believing there were children in need of rescue.” — from The Guradian
Sidney Powell appeared numerous times on FCN after the 2020 election claiming “criminal conduct” by Democrats as she promoted Trump’s big lie of a “stolen election.” Her attorney later claimed “No reasonable person would conclude that the statements were truly statements of fact,” in a motion to dismiss a lawsuit against Powell.
Many of us assumed that only the uneducated would believe these theories. However, this February 5, 2021 article “The Democratic Party Has a Fatal Misunderstanding of the QAnon Phenomenon” debunked that belief.
The Democratic Party Has a Fatal Misunderstanding of the QAnon Phenomenon
On Thursday, the House voted to strip Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of her committee assignments…
It was a surprise that educated people fall prey to these outlandish theories, but the author of the New Republic article, Osita Nwanevu, buried his lede. The key message of his piece is the same as what I’m conveying:
“…the challenge we’re facing isn’t that millions of hapless and benighted yokels have been bamboozled by disinformation. It’s that millions of ordinary people from many walks of life—
*have a material or ideological interest in keeping the Democratic Party from power by any means possible.*
And those means include the utilization of narratives, including conspiracy theories, that delegitimize Democrats and offer hope of their eventual comeuppance.”
I rest my case.
Propaganda does work. Its nuclear arsenal consists of repeating the same message again and again— “the Democratic party is your enemy.”
The conspiracy theories take that message to the fascist conclusion where extreme harm will come to “the Libs.” The theories included one scenario where millions of Democrats would be rounded up, arrested, and detained. And another scenario where there would be a mass execution of Democrats. The believers of that second scenario seemed to have no problem with it and many celebrated it. Can you imagine a “both sides” of that one?
Fox “News” Channel has become more extreme over the years, especially the last four years when they had their own asset in the White House.
More from the New Reblublic article:
“they found that higher levels of political knowledge actually deepened the likelihood that conservatives with low trust in people and major institutions would endorse right-wing conspiracy theories.”
How did those conservatives come by that mistrust?
It’s not that they’ve bought into conspiracy theories — it’s that they’ve bought into the claim that Democrats are the enemy.
The conspiracy theories simply justify their belief that liberals are evil but most alarming is that it can justify harm being inflicted on liberals. And could easily be used to justify taking complete power.
The conspiracy theories also justify the related belief that “the (mainstream) media is the enemy of the people” — where have we heard that? The 45th president repeated it endlessly but borrowed it from Richard Nixon.
At an October 2016 election rally in Cleveland, two supporters of the 45th president were captured on video shouting, “Lügenpresse!” The defamatory German word for “lying media” used frequently in Nazi Germany.
It’s not simply that those boarding the Q Train aren’t uneducated yokels…
“The real big lie at the heart of the modern Republican Party is about public policy, not conspiracy theories.” — The Washington Post 2/4/21
Opinion | Republicans have been living the big lie for too long
We are all wondering how the Republican Party - the party of Lincoln - got to the point that it has an elected member…
“Starting in the 1930s, Republicans promised their voters the repeal of FDR’s New Deal. When the next Republican president, Dwight D. Eisenhower, did nothing of the sort, the modern conservative movement emerged, furiously branding Eisenhower a traitor.
When LBJ enacted the Great Society, conservatives pledged that once elected, they would tear it all down — and never did.
Ronald Reagan launched his political career by denouncing Medicare as a direct path to socialism. If it passed, he warned, “[We] are going to spend our sunset years telling our children’s children what it once was like in America when men were free.” Of course, as president, Reagan left Medicare largely intact.
In the early 1990s, House leader Newt Gingrich doubled down on a rhetoric of radicalism and extremism. He described political opponents as the embodiment of evil, who won only because they lied and cheated.”
Translation: During their campaigns, GOP candidates have repeatedly promised to dismantle policies put in place by Democrats (and that were popular with the public). But once elected those Republicans did not dismantle the popular Democratic policies. (at least not until 2016)
“This strategy led millions of Republicans to feel cheated and lied to by their leaders, creating an atmosphere of paranoia and suspicion toward anyone who is not utterly extreme. It also feeds the notion that true conservatism fails because of some kind of collusion, treason and betrayal.
It is a short and direct line from Gingrich to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.”
Anyone Considered Liberal May Be Labeled the Enemy
After years of being trained to view Democrats and liberals in an extremely negative light, and convinced that “The Libs” are anti-American and determined to take away their guns and their liberties, those angry and well-armed people are going to likely wish ill will on over half of the population. People of color are targeted for additional reasons…but these consumers of right-wing media will also target the allies of people of color.
The Shocking GOP Activity Happening at the State Level
This is the most disturbing thing that’s happening and what seems to be the most under-reported and underrated danger that our country faces.
The GOP-controlled state legislatures are passing authoritarian laws enabling them to win no matter how the people voted.
“The Republican chair of Arizona’s state House Ways and Means Committee introduced a bill Wednesday that would give the Legislature authority to override the secretary of state’s certification of its electoral votes.
One section grants the Legislature, which is currently under GOP control, the ability to revoke the secretary of state’s certification “by majority vote at any time before the presidential inauguration.”
Arizona GOP lawmaker introduces bill to give Legislature power to toss out election results
The Republican chair of Arizona's state House Ways and Means Committee introduced a bill Wednesday that would give the…
State Republicans jumping on the ex-president’s lawless bandwagon is concerning. They have either bought into his Big Lie or are simply part of the “new” GOP that is hell-bent on taking power by any means necessary.
Not only are they following in the footsteps of the guy with the lie, but they likely feel fully justified because of what they’ve come to believe heart and soul about Democrats. Radical far-right Republicans blatantly stealing power, no doubt believe they are saving their country from the “evil Dems.”
In another heartbreaking development at the state level, in February 2021,
“A school in Utah is continuing its Black History Month curriculum after parents asked the school to allow their children to opt out of the program.
What’s most shocking is that it was one of the Montessori schools, which are known for being progressive.
Maria Montessori Academy in North Ogden, Utah, after receiving requests from parents, sent an opt-out form last Wednesday for those unwilling to participate in the school’s planned Black History Month curriculum.
Less than a week later, school director Micah Hirokawa says that all families are participating, and the school is no longer offering the option to not participate.”
After allowing parents to opt-out of the Black History Month curriculum, a Utah school is switching…
A school in Utah is continuing its Black History Month curriculum after parents asked the school to allow their…
The good news is that the issue was addressed and resolved:
(racists get woke)
“Hirokawa and the Board of Directors said in a statement. “We are grateful that families that initially had questions and concerns have willingly come to the table to resolve any differences and at this time no families are opting out of our planned activities and we have removed this option.”
Is There a Both Sides to This?
There has certainly been plenty of negative rhetoric about the GOP over the years, from individuals and from comparatively small left-wing organizations (and therefore rather insignificant in regard to their influence).
These organizations have not had the platform to get their message out to a wide audience and often their messages have seemed extreme or consisted of reactionary buzzwords.
My own experience has been that I’ve heard about the “military-industrial complex” since the 1970s. I rolled my eyes at that phrase for decades thinking that while there was likely some truth to it, that it seemed exaggerated to me and I noticed that it was screamed by aggressive left-wing radicals that I wasn’t interested in hanging out with…because of their aggression. In my mind, their aggressive approach put them in the same category as those they were fighting against. (history shows that often a violent overthrow of a right-wing regime by a left-wing regime were later just as corrupted by power)
Back to the point. While there have been many who’ve called-out the GOP, it’s not been necessary to make stuff up, though I’m sure their dirty tricks have been exaggerated by some leftists. But there has not been an organized grand-scale campaign by Democrats to systematically destroy the GOP by spreading blatant lies.
Are Democrats in Danger?
Is there a smoldering contempt for Democrats that’s more widespread than we know? Is there a belief that not only are we liberal Democrats evil and too dangerous to be allowed in office but that we’re not even worthy of remaining unharmed? Listen to the message in the video below.
Couy Griffin purposely makes the threatening statement first — “The only good Democrat is a de*d Democrat.” He then tries to save his ass saying he doesn’t mean it in the physical sense but in the political sense. The creepiest part in the video is when the audience cheers before he “explains,” letting us know that at least those 50 people are just fine with dead Democrats.
It may sound far-fetched that every registered Democrat is in danger. But if 30 years of conditioning has embedded fear and hatred deeper than we know…and they’ve now been given permission, feel emboldened and incited by the ex-president and his extreme supporters what else can we think?
Published on February 11, 2021, this article states that “4 in 10 Republicans Say Political Violence May Be Necessary”
“The level of distrust among Republicans evident in the survey was such that about 8 in 10 said the current political system is “stacked against conservatives and people with traditional values.”
A majority agreed with the statement: “The traditional American way of life is disappearing so fast that we may have to use force to save it.”
A 'Scary' Survey Finding: 4 In 10 Republicans Say Political Violence May Be Necessary
The mob that attacked the U.S. Capitol may have been a fringe group of extremists, but politically motivated violence…
Let It Sink In That…
80% of Republicans believe that it’s acceptable to use violence to save what they see as “their” traditional American way of life.
The highest percentage was among white evangelicals. They’ve been told again and again by “news” sources with racist dog-whistle messaging that the system is stacked against them.
The Impeachment trial is wrapping up. The House Managers presented evidence that created an airtight case. The defense claimed freedom of speech and that Democrats use the word “fight” all the time. After accusing House Managers of editing together cherry-picked clips, the defense proceeded to do the exact same thing. The defense also blatantly lied when they said they didn’t have the “previously unseen Capitol security footage,” — the truth is that they did have it.
We are naive if we think for a moment that more than a handful of Republicans care about the irrefutable evidence presented by the House Managers.
We have two political parties.
One party wants to govern and serve the people.
The other party wants power and self-enrichment.
Our democracy is hanging by a thread.
The campaign of falsehoods against Democrats is the strongest element contributing to the so-called “polarization” in our country.
That polarization is not the result of actions on “both sides.” It’s not from disagreement. As I explain in No Difference of Opinion — Simply Some People Convinced of a Fabricated Reality, the polarization is the result of two sets of “facts.”
We’re not disagreeing on policy or ideology. We’re disagreeing about reality.
This “polarization” has reached critical mass and many of us are terrified.
My brothers and sisters of color have known this terror their entire lives.
White folks, including myself, will never be as threatened as they are but we fear that we’re about to find out what it’s like to have a target on our back.