Rumpt supporters, think outside the slogan—Part Two

Forrest Johnson

Hello to you Rumpt supporters out there. I have again read those letters to the editor, talked to you at the post office and read your comments in the newspaper.

After all this time I’m still asking the simple question of just how you could support a fake billionaire who makes things up at will, screws porn stars and prostitutes, has no moral compass or concern for other people and is willing to lead the country backward not forward.

At this point all I can figure is that you’ve fallen for a slogan and not reality. Yes, obviously some of you seem to think that allowing more pollution is just fine. That Obama was a bum. That our military is in shambles and we need to fix it now. That we need a tax cut that disproportionately sends money up the ladder rather than down. That we need to control those immigrants and build a big wall to stop them from entering and ruining our society. That we need to dispute the overwhelming evidence that the climate is changing. That we need to bring back coal and pollute more air, land and water. That we need to keep health care in free market hands so it will remain the most expensive and elusive system in the developed world. That Christian values and family values are under attack and you can’t even say Santa Claus without having the police show up at your door. That white America won’t be the majority in 2044 (caucasions will be 49.9 percent of the population—still a significant majority if we’ve stooped to wondering what all our ethnicities might be). 

I understand that you accept the aforementioned ideas as your slogans for a better America.

I’ve tried to make sense of this before. 

A thoughtful friend sent me a bunch of old newspaper columns I wrote from way back in the 1990s and 2000s. There I was, railing against the machine, so to speak. I had my weekly soapbox and 4000 subscribers and I felt a bit of an obligation to alert them about schmoozers and bamboozlers. The machine was saying that pollution was getting better (pollution gets better?) and global warming was a hoax, that the military was in shambles, that tax cuts were needed, that illegal immigrants were storming the border, that health care was just fine as long as the single-payer socialists don’t get their hands on it. That Christian values and family values are under attack from the godless left. That illegal immigrants and minorities are a threat to American culture.

Whew.

Déjà vu all over again.

As a longtime newspaper editor in the Lake County community I felt an urgency in those days to get the word out that lots of people in the machine were widening the latitudes of what was true or not when talking public and social policy. Slogans and talking points were paraded out in front of the truth in ever widening circles and it seemed to me, now branded “an enemy of the people” by Mr. Rumpt, that the machine was starting to get traction with the middle class by methods of obfuscation and distraction. That people were being schmoozed and bamboozled. That people were starting to believe slogans rather than truth.

Whew, here we are in 2018.

Déjà vu all over again.          

My significant other, Susan, asked the other day why we ruin just about everything in this world.

She wondered why we would choose to harm the environment with our industrial farming methods and the threat of sulfide mining in a water rich landscape. Why we would think that destroying 6000-8000 acres of wetlands in Polymet’s “modern, safe and environmentally friendly way” is a good trade for short-lived jobs? Why we would even question the need to reduce air pollution and protect wild rice beds in northern Minnesota and vast swaths of agricultural Minnesota that we know we’re killing with chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides for corn and soybean products that are turned into processed food products, cattle feed and ethanol. 

“Why do we ruin just about everything in this world,” she asked.

All I could say is that people will believe a slogan told enough times over the dull, boring truth. The slogan can manipulate just about anyone into false belief as long as they hear those slogan enough times, over and over, repetitive, populist, god-fearing, fearful.

At some point it appears that people just stop thinking for themselves because the slogan has done that for them and they believe the slogan more than the facts.

Once people believe the slogan it appears as those who create the slogan can move the rules to fit their needs and no one is worse for the wear. The slogan lives, life is going backwards not forwards, and the people are for that because they seem to have stopped thinking and have trusted the slogan.

Rumpt and his kind are the slogan, they exist outside of the truth. 

Rumpt supporters I ask, can you think outside the slogan?