By Mike Lofgren
In a previous piece, I described how the Republican Party and its ideological allies in the fundamentalist churches have confected a comprehensive media-entertainment complex to attract low-information Americans and turn them into partisans.
The propaganda they are fed has become so disconnected from facts, evidence and logic that it is all too easy to laugh at people operating on demonstrably – and even ridiculously – false premises, such as the notion that Barack Obama, born in Hawaii, is not a natural-born American, or that the Sandy Hook school massacre was an elaborate fake designed to take away the firearms of patriotic Americans.
It would be comforting to believe that somewhere in the commanding heights of our permanent government, there are important players who are serious grownups who know what they are doing. That, at least, is the impression they seek to convey with their sober demeanors, credentials from think tanks or prestigious universities, and the measured, almost soporific testimony they deliver to congressional committees.
Think of Robert Gates, Ashton Carter, Timothy Geithner or Eric Holder. On the surface, they seem the very antithesis of the Tea Party fanatic, gibbering about ISIS training camps in America. The preferred pose of these establishment personages is that of the politically neutral technocrat offering well-considered advice based on their profound expertise.
That pose is nonsense.