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A few thoughts on the “secret memo”

Well, all the world can now read the “secret memo”, and, not surprisingly, other than in the right wing fever swamp, the reaction has been dismissive at best, mocking derision at worst. A good collection of mocking twitter posts here.

The whole thing never made sense. The thing was created by Republican operatives who immediately claimed it was being held hostage by nefarious forces. it was a controversy created by and for Fox viewers. The underlying premise is: if you can sell it to the Fox viewer, you can sell it to everyone.

What this episode reveals is the fact that many Republican politicians have become dupes of their own propaganda machine. They have come to believe that everyone is as easily deluded as the average Fox viewer, and, in the process, they themselves have become as easily deluded as the average Fox viewer. That’s not how it’s supposed to work; it’s important that the propagandist realizes that he’s propagandizing.

Based on everything I’d read about the “secret memo”, it seemed clear that no one the least bit informed would be taken in. Nunes obviously believed otherwise and appears to have believed his own propaganda. He, like so many other Republicans, has come to believe that everyone thinks like him and the average Fox viewer.

The only question is: is it enough. Abe never pointed out the obvious: that it may be sufficient to fool most of the people most of the time. In fact, given how we elect our representatives, it may be sufficient, contra Abe’s assertion, to fool some of the people all of the time, provided those people live in the right places. We may be about to find out if that’s so.

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