Sunday, December 04, 2005

Manufactured Controversy: The War on Christmas

Sometimes you read, hear or watch something in the media that makes you shake your head and wonder what planet these people live on. Tune in to just about any conservative radio show, Fox News or any number of other conservative websites and you can find out there is some kind of "war on Christmas".

Funny, those are the only places this "war" exists. Everybody I know and the things around town you see smacks of the holiday season. The stores, the advertising, and all that goes with it. Do people really give a second thought when they read an ad worded "happy holidays" or "merry X-mas"? I think its fair to say that the overwhelming majority of people do not ever give it a second thought. Watch or listen to people like Bill O'reilly and you would think there is some kind of leftist plot to kill Christmas. Sounds tailor made for a new animated Christmas special. We can name it "O'reilly Saves Christmas"

So what's really going on here? The answer is quite obvious. The Republican party is mired in scandal after scandal, the war in Iraq is going very badly, the budget deficit is growing ever larger and cuts are being made in student loan programs to fund tax cuts for the wealthiest 1%. Our health care system is broken, and the people in power have no answer to the rising cost of health care, nor for the 47+ million people who can not afford coverage of any kind. The south is still reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and the news from the gulf region is not encouraging.

With an election coming up for Congress and Republican control in jeopardy the conservatives are trying to divert attention from the important issues that our country faces. So this month its the "war on Christmas". Fox News gives more attention to this phony war then any of the meat and potatoes issues I mentioned above. Next month it will be another manufactured war I am sure, like Intelligent Design or Gay marriage. To keep the folks on the right angry and voting the conservative talkies have no choice but to keep hitting their listeners over the head with this stuff. If you give them any time to think they may realize how bad things are and abandon the Republican party.

Will this strategy work for them? Only time will tell....

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