Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wedge Issue Update: #9 Dirty Filthy Hippies (with a bullet)

Back in mid-October I mused about which wedge issue might ultimately pop up as the centerpiece of the 2012 Republican attacks. Down near the bottom of my possibilities I placed "9) Dirty Filthy Hippies Occupying Wall Street (and elsewhere)".
A month later, I would place this wedge issue right at the very top. On Fox News this exchange between Sean Hannity and Sarah Palin on November 17th described an Occupy Wall Street movement that bore no relation to any reality outside the Fox News studios:

HANNITY: All right. We see the violence there, one police officer I think had 20 stitches and a gash, things thrown in their face. You see the violence. This is really just a culmination, though. We have seen rape, we have seen arson, destruction of property, sex, masturbation in public, defecating in public, anti-Semitism, anti-American rhetoric, drugs, open-air drugs markets. Well, what do you make of this and the Democratic Party support for this?
PALIN: It is amazing that President Obama, Vice President Biden and former Speaker Pelosi along with many other Democrats have actually embraced this movement and actually, you know, patted these folks on their back as they have engaged in these -- some really atrocious activities. I think it speaks to what part of that mission is on the left, and that is disruption, it is distraction. It's very misguided and these are folks who are ill-informed, not understanding really who and what it is that they should be protesting. If they truly want free men and free markets in this country, then they should be, you know, making their voices known at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and letting Barack Obama know that they disagree with the crony capitalism that he has been so engaged in and allowed to perpetuate. These folks are misguided and I think it's just atrocious what is going on.

Read or watch the whole segment here if you're feeling a little masochistic.

On November 19th Newt Gingrich got rousing applause in Iowa with his instructions to Occupy Wall Street delivered to Frank Luntz and a pumpkin centerpiece: "Go get a job right after you take a bath." It could have been Nixon rousing the Silent Majority against the hippies.

Continuing in the old strategy to rouse the Silent Majority, we have Americans for Tax Reform President Grover "Rat Head in a Koch Bottle" Norquist, the most powerful man in America according the Alan Simpson, the strategist who has tied up the entire Congress with his no-tax pledge, giving us the final proof that #OWS will be used as a wedge in 2012 when he said, “The Occupy Wall Street is a tremendous asset and it’s a movement that I think will be very helpful [to his GOP clients and paymasters] in the 2012 elections, and I think it’s a mistake to interfere with them continuing to annoy middle class Americans." An annoyed middle class can then be manipulated to vote against their own economic interests.

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