Fear and Interest

Napoleon Bonaparte famously noted that the only forces that unite human beings are fear and interest.

If your experience is anything like mine, you’re being inundated with political advertising in the form of TV spots, radio spots, newspaper ads, and frank mail. I can only imagine what it’s like in districts that are actually competitive or states with senatorial elections.

The advertisements of Republicans, what few of them I receive here, rely on fear—fear of immigrants, fear of increased taxes, and fear of Democrats unleashed. The advertisements of Democrats rely on both fear and interest. The phrase “they want to take aware your health care” is an appeal to fear while the impressive array of additional services in health care and education are appeals to interest.

The lack of self-awareness continues to be astonishing to me.

3 comments… add one
  • Guarneri Link

    I can only assume that those ads are red meat, get out the base, directed.


    On the other hand, it is somewhat disconcerting to learn of Republicans’ desire to pitch wheelchair bound grandmas off of the nation’s cliffs. I saw it on a TV ad. I was on the lookout for these atrocities, but thankfully saw none, while traveling the Blue Ridge Parkway Saturday.

  • steve Link

    Summation of GOP plans at link. They weren’t throwing granny off the cliff as she had Medicare, and granny votes Republican. They were throwing a lot of younger people off of medical care, and if you were in an area where PP provided most of the women’s care int he area, you were out of luck. (Basically, a plan designed to raise maternal mortality rates as high as they are in Texas.)



  • The latest maternal morbidity and mortality report, for September 2018, from the Texas State Health Services department makes pretty interesting reading, steve. If I read it correctly, the greatest cause of maternal death among white women is drug abuse while the greatest cause of maternal death among black women is obesity. Lack of care doesn’t seem to be a grave contributing cause.

    In other words Texas does have public health problems but not those that the ACA was designed to address. Are Texas’s problems exacerbated by its relatively low footprint of public services? I honestly have no idea.

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