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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Obama's Brown Shirts Continue To Attack Dissent

"Propaganda is not an end in itself, but a means to an end. If the means achieves the end then the means is good.........the new Ministry has no other aim than to unite the nation behind the ideal of the national revolution." Joseph Goebbels
President Obama is a bully, he doesn't like being questioned or crossed. Like most of the bullying kind, if you disagree with him he will go after you with personal attacks full guns blaring. Just look at some examples of the people who have crossed the President and got smack down by the Bully-in-Chief or his agents:
  • Sean Hannity
  • Joe the Plumber
  • Rush Limbaugh
  • Bob Basso, the guy who made those Tom Paine videos.
  • All Talk Radio
  • Gay bloggers
  • Right wing bloggers
  • Glen Beck
  • Insurance Companies
  • Fox News
Every time Obama attacks one of his critics he lowers the prestige of the office he holds. His attacks rarely involve presenting the facts, just calling people names.  Rather than proving that the president has a "thin-skin," these White House attacks are evidence of a concerted effort to marginalize criticism and as Joseph Goebbels said, "unite the nation behind the ideal of the national revolution"

As reported by Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen in today's Politico:
....President Obama is working systematically to marginalize the most powerful forces behind the Republican Party, setting loose top White House officials to undermine conservatives in the media, business and lobbying worlds.

With a series of private meetings and public taunts, the White House has targeted the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the biggest-spending pro-business lobbying group in the country; Rush Limbaugh, the country’s most-listened-to conservative commentator; and now, with a new volley of combative rhetoric in recent days, the insurance industry, Wall StreetFox News.

Obama aides are using their powerful White House platform, combined with techniques honed in the 2008 campaign, to cast some of the most powerful adversaries as out of the mainstream and their criticism as unworthy of serious discussion.

Press secretary Robert Gibbs has mocked Limbaugh from the White House press room podium. White House aides limited access to the Chamber and made top adviser Valerie Jarrett available to reporters to disparage the group. Everyone from White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel to White House Communications Director Anita Dunn has piled on Fox News by contending it’s not a legitimate news operation.

All of the techniques are harnessed to a larger purpose: to marginalize not only the individual person or organization but also some of the most important policy and publicity allies of the national Republican Party.

Dunn said that in August, as the president’s aides planned for the fall, they made “a fundamental decision that we needed to be more aggressive in both protecting our position and in delineating our differences with those who were attacking us.”

“It was a time for us to look at the extraordinary success we’ve had in terms of legislation but also to look at where we needed to be more aggressive in defining what the choices are, and in protecting and pushing forward our agenda,” she said.

The campaign underscores how deeply political the Obama White House is in its daily operations — with a strong focus on redrawing the electoral map and discrediting the personalities and ideas that have powered the conservative movement over the past 20 years.

.....“They won — why don’t they act like it?” said Dana Perino, former White House press secretary to Bush. “The more they fight, the more defensive they look. It’s only been 10 months, and they’re burning bridges in a lot of different places.”

White House officials see things differently. They see an opportunity to corner critics of the president’s policies, especially on health care and financial regulations, and, in the process, further marginalize the Republican Party.

Privately, officials have talked with relish for months of the potential to isolate the GOP as a narrow party of white, Southern conservatives with little appeal to independent-minded voters.

This won’t happen overnight, but a combination of demographics — especially the explosion of a Hispanic population that has been voting for Democrats — the near-extinction of Republicans in the Northeast and the steady rightward drift of the GOP’s grass-roots activists at least makes it a plausible goal.

By design or not, nearly every Republican whom Obama has nominated for a White House job — Ray LaHood for Transportation, Judd Gregg for Commerce and John McHugh for the Army — represents an area Democrats can take back if the sitting Republican is gone. None is from the South.

So is the strategy working? White House officials point to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll to argue the answer is emphatically yes. Only 20 percent of those surveyed identified themselves as Republicans, the lowest in 26 years of asking the question.

As bad as that number is, the news about independents is arguably worse. A staggering 83 percent of all independents surveyed said they don’t trust Republicans to make the right decisions.

It’s impossible to credit the Obama White House for these numbers, however. Republicans can claim the bulk of the responsibility after a decade of scandals, unpopular wars, unprecedented spending and a broad loss of public trust.

The White House approach could backfire if Obama looks too political or petty, some Democrats say privately. The skeptical reaction to the attacks on Fox News shows this is a possibility: Key commentators have argued that it is foolish of the White House to spend so much time slamming one network simply because it dislikes much of its programming.

An experienced Democratic strategist who likes Obama said his team was having a tough time striking the right balance between short-term skirmishing and the president’s long-term image. “The key to their success — short term and long term — is his personal likability and approval rating,” said the strategist, who requested anonymity in order to speak bluntly. “They’ve taken their eye off that ball a little bit.”

Charlie Black, a Republican lobbyist who was senior political adviser to last year’s presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), said the White House salvos are “a far cry from the post-partisan, consensus-driven, unifying approach” that was Obama’s signature during the campaign.

“Fighting with a bunch of different institutions turns him into a typical politician and makes people cynical that anyone’s really going to change Washington,” Black said. “A big part of his ‘hope and change’ message was: ‘We’re gong to talk to everyone.’ He might have had great intentions, but human nature and politics don’t change much.”

Politics is carrying the day right now. Consider the past week alone.

Jarrett made clear in an interview with POLITICO that the Chamber is on the outs with the White House. She then confirmed White House displeasure with the group to The Washington Post. The Chamber is as important to the GOP’s business strategy as any group in the country. The association spent $35 million lobbying in the third quarter of this year alone — more than the next 18 biggest spending groups in the country combined. It has lost some corporate members over the climate change fight, and the White House sees the potential to forge closer relations with individual companies and CEOs.

White House officials said they continue to meet with the Chamber and maintain that they are not at war, while acknowledging that they continue to have significant public differences.

Fox News has been getting the Limbaugh treatment — on steroids.

Earlier this year, Gibbs and others relentlessly hammered the talk show host and worked to portray him as the spokesman for the Republican Party. “They knew it was going to help Limbaugh but hurt the Republicans,” said Democratic strategist James Carville.

That was child’s play compared with the Fox drubbing. Dunn has done countless interviews to slam Fox and its opinion-dominated coverage — and Emanuel and White House senior adviser David Axelrod joined in over the weekend. The White House has cooperated gladly with stories explaining why it is on the warpath against the network.

The campaign against the insurance industry, a major supporter of GOP fundraising, likewise has cranked up dramatically in recent weeks, especially after the industry released a report warning of big increases in insurance premiums if the Democratic health bill becomes law. It is clear the White House now wants to isolate the industry as the most obstructionist and irresponsible corporate player in the health debate.

 If you are not frightened about the POTUS attempt to stifle criticism and debate, you should be. This is how democracy's are overthrown.

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