While watching CNN this morning, I was (un)fortunate enough to watch an interview with Dan Bartlett, the White House
Chief Propagandist and Spinmeister Communications Director, whose primary responsibility seems to be parroting Administration talking points while wearing a beatific smile and knowingly denigrating the intentions of Democrats. Bartlett seemed intent on focusing on talk of the necessity of “continued sacrifice” and how Democrats just don’t understand the nature of the threat we face. Then it struck me: how can Bartlett, and others in the Administration charged with spreading propaganda. look at themselves in the mirror without feeling at least a modicum of guilt? Are they so inured to reality that they can simply create their own and believe it as if it were carved in stone? Do these people honestly believe every bit of the propaganda they spew? Have they really been drinking the KoolAid for so long now that they believe that the talking points they recite so blithely are the absolute Gospel truth, and anyone with a shred of sense and patriotism will be in complete agreement?What really upset me, though, was Bartlett’s implied contention that those who do not support Our Glorious Leader in this time of war (i.e. – Democrats) are somehow unpatriotic, anti-American, and willing to coddle terrorists. Have the talking heads charged with spreading this Administration’s propaganda really sunk to the point where they can equate dissent with anti-Americanism? Apparently so.
As an American whose tax dollars help underwrite this crap, I’m incensed. Yes, I understand that every Administration needs to be able to present it’s side of the story in the best possible light. In that sense, this Administration is no different from any other. Nonetheless, this Administration devotes more time and effort to furiously massaging the message and spinning their version of the truth than any other Administration in recent memory.
I suppose I shouldn’t be particularly surprised that the Bush Administration devotes so much time, effort, and taxpayer money to propaganda dissemination. After all, any time they want to get their message out, where do they go but straight to the
GOP Propaganda Channel Fox News Channel, where they are guaranteed a friendly audience and a sympathetic ear? Our Glorious Leader, after all, seldom appears before anything but carefully screened, thoroughly vetted, and reliably Republican audiences who can be counted on to lob softballs at him (How long before we see your lovely wife run for office? Ack….)
If it was something as simple as the Administration working to get their version of events out, I could understand it. There’s nothing sinister in working to be sure that your point of view is “properly” represented. When this crosses the line into propagandizing and questioning the patriotic bona fides of those who dare to dissent, though, something is horribly wrong. This Administration seems heavily invested in promoting the attitude that dissent can and should be equated with supporting terrorism. Bartlett, for instance, seemed intent on subtly implying that Democrats are soft on terror and ignorant of the realites of the threat we face. One thing seems clear, though; the amount of effort devoted by the Bush Administration’s talking heads to massaging their version of the truth is directly proportional to Our Glorious Leader’s sagging poll numbers. Desperate times call for desperate measures, eh?
WE DESERVE BETTER.