It’s election year, and the heat is turning up between incumbent President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney. The insults are flying, the attack ads are in full swing, and yet, what is America up in arms about? Two issues have managed to top the political world in just a week’s time, just a few critical weeks away from election time. These issues are not new by any stretch of the imagination, but they were not something that was what you would say the talk of the town in Washington. A few short days can make a world of difference, and now, America is focused on issues that just seven days ago seemed to be completely dwarfed by other problems plaguing the nation.
We’ve talked in the past about how sitting presidents have a lot going for them in elections because there are things that they can do that someone running for president the first time simply can’t touch. For example, President Obama’s timely announcement that the war in Iraq was officially over and the troops would be coming home made him look like a winner compared to his challenger, but the reality, if you investigated the real facts, was that the timetable ultimately used by Obama to withdraw from Iraq was designed during the Bush presidency. But the President of the United States is a powerful platform, and Obama got to be the one to herald the end of the war and in effect, take credit. This is the kind of power that only Obama has at this time, and it makes him very difficult for anyone, regardless of how stinking filthy rich they are to (a la Mitt Romney) to compete with. However, what we are witnessing now is another powerful tool that those in power have in elections. It’s a term often used by magicians as they create illusions. It’s the idea of misdirection.
In magic, it’s one of the first concepts a performer learns. So many illusions depend on it. Put simply, the magician focuses the audience’s attention on one thing while he deftly uses sleight-of-hand to do another. The misdirection is so well-played, well-rehearsed, and universally appealing to the viewer, that he or she can almost not help but fall for it. Then, when they do realize what the other hand was doing, as the saying goes, it’s too late to see how the trick is performed and the illusion is complete. This is the exact blueprint that we are seeing right now.
Go back a week and a half and look at what the critical issues of this 2012 election were. Jobs, unemployment, the national deficit, Obamacare, taxes, and the war. Pretty much the same old suspects that have been lingering around since most of George W. Bush’s final term. Suddenly, in a matter of days, the entire paradigm that was United States politics has changed. It started with the shootings in Aurora, Colorado. This brought gun control back to the forefront. Now, Congress is considering a law to ban the online sale of ammunition in light of gunman’s James Holmes ability to purchase 6,000 rounds on the Internet in no time at all. Who does this help? Simple one here. Republicans.
We all know America’s two-party political system, and year after year it is the Democrats and Republicans duking it out as the only two real contenders in any political race, be it at the local, state or national level. Well, both parties are capable of misdirection. This article is not really leaning one way or another. We are watching a complicated chess game of forces that most of us cannot even hope to understand. This is the power struggle that is going on all the time, and it has a lot less to do with debates and house votes than you might think.
So, why would James Holmes going bonkers and shooting up a theater be an advantage to the Republican Party? It’s called getting out the vote, and it is the most critical part of any election. In 2008, President Obama rallied youth to his side, and that was a huge part of his success. There is a certain percentage of Americans that are going to vote, and they are going to vote one way or another, no matter what happens. Politicians don’t wake up sweating in the middle of the night worrying about these. They know which ones they can count in the bag and which ones there is no need to try to convince. It’s those others out there, the swing voters as they are called, that make many a candidate’s nightmares. Many of these swing voters lean one way or another, but are not particularly moved to get out and vote because either the issues don’t inspire them to get moving or the candidates themselves don’t appeal to them. But a hot-button issue can work wonders for getting a base out to the polling booths. Republicans get a lot of love from the National Rifle Association, and the rumors of gun control being something Obama will be all over if reelected have already been spread profusely. Most of the data that is used to support this. President Obama has never shown any inclination to push for more gun control, but the Republicans have successfully planted that fear in the hearts of many Americans. Now, gun control is back on the menu, and Republicans hope this will mean more of their base and swing voters turning out for fear of losing their weapons in a new Obama term.
Are we saying that the Republican party was involved in an elaborate scheme that resulted in the massacre at Aurora? We’re not going that far. We don’t want to go on record presenting this as a true theory because we know we can’t prove it. And if we could, we’d probably be dead before we could share it with you. Consider this more like an active discussion.
As for the other side, gay marriage is nothing new as political issues go, but due to some untimely comments by Dan Cathy, the CEO of Chick-fil-A, the popular fast food restaurant, that have enraged those that support gay marriage, it is back on the menu in a big way. Once again, the gay voting base is almost entirely Democratic, and getting them out to vote is viewed by some pundits as critical to Obama holding the Republicans off. The idea is that the gay community might not be as predisposed to get out and support one candidate or the other if both were in opposition to gay marriage. However, Obama has already changed his views on the issue a few months back, becoming the first American President to openly support gay marriage. Now, the comments from Mr. Cathy have blown the lid off and gay marriage may just be the number one issue come November.
But why on Earth would Chick-fil-A participate in a conspiracy like this? What benefit could they hope to obtain from it? Easy one. They get credit for sticking up for their religious values, which they are known for anyway. They get some badmouthing in the media, but at the end of the days hundreds of thousands rally around it, buying their food in “appreciation.” Churches all over America were holding their own private “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Days” having the restaurant cater food for their entire attendance on midweek nights. It’s kind of like the political model; Chick-fil-A pissed off the people that didn’t like their stance anyway, but they also got hundreds of thousands of supporters to come out and give them money in a big time way. Score for Chick-fil-A when it’s all over in the profit column. But who will get the “W” in the political column?
It seems like a slam dunk for Democrats but this could be a political ploy that could backfire. The party banks on African-Americans voting for Obama as well as the gay community and gay supporters. Only African-American pastors are already coming out in droves to contest this. And then there’s always the possibility that the Republicans are really behind it in the ultimate misdirection.
Or, as our readers know, Common Sense Conspiracy doesn’t think that everything is a conspiracy. Maybe it is just a coincidence that this happened when it did and the results remain unknown and hard to put a solid prediction on. But then, you never know do you?
Always watch what the other hand is doing. While you’re sitting in the drive-thru at Chick-fil-A, Congress is still biding their time and ignoring the Bush tax cuts which are set to expire. Why? Because no one wants to raise taxes two months before an election. Better to wait it out and move afterward. Never mind what the American public needs. It’s all about the votes and the politics. And a two-party system that exists in the greatest misdirection of all: illusion of choice.