Published October 27, 2008
Something that we should all be aware of and think about.
Topic: Upcoming election between Richard Nixon (R) and Helen Gahagan Douglas (D)
Question: How to discredit Gahagan Douglas in the week immediately prior to the election.
Plan: Accuse Gahagan Douglas being a Communist and attempt to link her to communist roots without any chance for her to respond. Distribute “pink” flyers subtly labeling Gahagan Douglas as a Communist sympathizer.
Have candidate surrogates not the candidate themselves lustily voice the link to communists at every opportunity.
“Nixon waged an inspiring red-baiting campaign and was unrelenting in his charges. If he never actually called her a communist, saying she was "pink right down to her underwear" was not a fashion critique. His legions were yet less restrained. Murray Chotiner, Nixon's campaign manager, printed an infamous flyer that was handed out at rallies. Printed on pink paper (and, thus, forever known as the "pink sheet"), it more than implied a connection between Douglas and communism.
Other Nixon campaign workers called Douglas a communist when they approached strangers on the street. They called her a communist when they telephoned thousands of homes the night before the election. In an era when the nation's fear was palpable, the strategy was a great success. On Election Day Nixon won handily.” © 2007 Carl Albert Center at the University of Oklahoma
Topic: Upcoming election between John McCain and Barach Obama.
Question: How to discredit Obama in the week immediately prior to the election.
Plan: Accuse Obama being a terrorist and attempt to link him to terrorism without any chance for him to respond.
Mail out misleading flyers with innuendo suggesting that Obama might be a terrorist.
Not the candidate (McCain) but have surrogates like Sara Palin lustily voice the link to terrorism at every opportunity.
McCain has waged an inspiring terrorist-baiting campaign and has been unrelenting in his charges. If he never actually called Obama a terrorist, he is certainly seeking to link him to terrorist organization. His legions are yet less restrained. The RNC is releasing a flyer with “Terrorists at our doors on the front and a picture of Obama and the words “Not who we think he is”, printed on the inside, implying a connection between Obama and terrorism.
Other McCain campaign members accuse Obama of not being who he claims to be at rallies around the country. Robocalls now link Obama with domestic terrorism, and suggests that he opposes mandatory sentencing of sex offenders. In an era when the nation's fear of terrorism is palpable, the strategy may be a great success. Who will win this election? And will we ever learn from the past?