Projection in Politics
One of the most enduring characteristics of the human psyche is that it “projects” what it fears most about itself onto others. Although most of us do this (projection) most of the time, this mechanism is more active and pronounced in those with hysterical personalities—characterized by superficiality, egocentricity, vanity, dependence, and by dramatic, reactive, and intensely expressed emotional behavior (according to Webster). Nowhere is this more evident than in American politics.
Consider the issue of Social Security. One effect of this program has been to dramatically reduce the suicide rates for the elderly, which have declined 56 percent since 1930, according to Jacob Weisberg. Consider what would have happened had the Republicans prevailed in privatizing Social Security during the Bush administration. We’d have older people dying younger and committing suicide more often. Of course, this is exactly what the Republicans accuse Obama of wanting to do. Interesting, isn’t it?
I’m sure you see how it works. Accuse Obama (the black demon without a birth certificate) of doing the very thing you do yourselves, but don’t dare speak it’s name. Of course, you must mobilize the most vulnerable and hysterical members of the population (mostly poor whites) by telling them that the Democrats want to kill them. You invent death panels that decide whether they will live or die based on socialist priorities, and repeat this in various and sundry ways through the media (who are more than happy to help).
This stuff would be funny if it weren’t so sad and destructive. The very people who could benefit most from public health care are the ones who fight most strongly against it. Ask yourself how it’s possible to have a functional democracy when a large percentage of the population is incapable of understanding the issues being brought forth.
This has been going on for decades now. You have moneyed interests funding smear campaigns using conservatives as mouthpieces to mobilize an ignorant population into voting and acting against its own interests. How is this possible? Projection. It works every time, though it must be said that the process has been used so often that it is becoming obvious, even to its targets, who are slowly waking up to the fact that they’ve been had.