Nothing sells news like fear. If marketers can make us afraid of something, we will buy any product that promises to help us avoid that fear. Those who create a fear in order to sell a product are known as snake oil salesmen.
Today there is a new ‘product’ on the market, a product for which new (unfounded) fears have been created and the lemmings are falling for the ploy – hook, line and sinker. The product? Donald Trump. The fears? Everything from Muslims, Mexicans, people with disabilities, free trade agreements, jobs, and more. He claims that only his product, himself, can keep us safe and “make America great again”. .
An excellent post by writer-blogger Hugh Curtler explains why so many Americans today are vulnerable to Trump’s marketing strategy and that the solution to this “politics of paranoia” lies in our education system. He claims, and I agree, that democracy cannot continue to exist in an environment where education is declining. Please take a few minutes to read his post and let him know what you think. Agree? Disagree?
Years ago John Dewey wrote a book about the relationship between democracy and education, making the claim that the former relies upon the latter. Without an educated citizenry democracy cannot survive. I have been harping on the same theme for many years now and am saddened to say that Dewey was spot on. We are seeing his prediction come true, especially of late.
Thousands of qualified American citizens are ready to vote for a demagogue who has openly lied and insulted whole classes of people while making it abundantly clear that he is an autocrat in the mold of Vladamir Putin: he wants to (and thinks he can) run the show by himself. He doesn’t realize that as president he must work with the sitting Congress in order to achieve anything. Given his past performance it is fair to say that if the Congress doesn’t act as he would want them…
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