Healthcare Rallies, Guns, and Astroturfing

Posted: August 17th, 2009 by Militant Libertarian

Today, We Are Change Arizona posted a video on YouTube (below) of a rally in Phoenix protesting Obama’s “town hall” on health care issues. No word yet on who the planted shills were asking questions in that meeting yet, but I’m sure that someone took notes.

A few days ago, I wrote an article about the Healthcare debate and how the reform debates miss the point.

Now what I’m seeing is that there is as much stupidity amongst those who protest against Obamacare as there are those who are for it. Sheep come in all political stripes, I guess.

It all started in New Hampshire when a guy showed up to an Obama town hall meeting carrying his pistol (openly). The event was in New Hampshire, where (gasp!) it’s legal to open carry. The national news media attempted to make this into a big deal as if he was only “barely obeying the law” with it.

Regardless of the guy’s intentions, he was well spoken when interviewed and didn’t cave to the blatant attacks and character jabs the media threw at him. He’s a great spokesman for the common man carrying firearms freely.

He’s not a great spokesman for the opposition to health care reform. He’s a detriment.

The gum-chewing, mostly articulate fellow in Arizona? Same. Great spokesman for the Second Amendment, crappy spokesman for opposing Obamacare.

Of course, the socialists progressives are having a field day with this. Now it’s “anti-Obama gun nuts” and “Far right Obama haters bring guns to rally.”

Anyone else see the issue here? I’m all for gun ownership rights. I’m one of those nutcases that believes that there should be no gun restrictions (zero, zip, zilch) of any kind. At all. But that’s not the point here.

The point here is that these well-meaning knuckleheads are screwing us over without even knowing it.

I can understand their motivation. I’ve been guilty of doing the same sort of thing. After all, there are so many infringements on our rights that it appears that we have to take every chance we can get to make sure the world knows that we aren’t going to back down and are exercising ALL of our rights (as not defined by the ACLU).

The problem is that it removes the legitimacy of our cause on the health care debate and puts us in the same astro turfing camp as the Obamabots who want socialized healthcare.

It removes the debate away from the real issue, which is the falsehoods being perpetrated as “healthcare reform” in Washington, and puts it into the media’s love affair with “nutjobs.”

I don’t care how articulate, nicely dressed, thoughtful, or intelligent you are. They own the cameras and they will make you look insane. Don’t give them something to focus on that has so many psychological implications in people’s minds.

In the first instance, in New Hampshire, the only thing that saved the guy was that he was alone carrying, he was a surprise so the media was too slow to react and get any footage, and by the time they got him on camera (well after the event), it had been talked up so much that it was kind of a let down to finally see the guy. He looked normal, coherent, and didn’t even have foam at the mouth.

This next one, though? Ya, they were all over him and the guy was only too happy to mug for the camera and get his AR on TV. That’s all that was really shown, so you know. The interview in the video above was by someone who agreed with the guy. So it was good. The media dispensed with that and just showed closeups of the gun and only begrudgingly admitted he was a black man. All in all, it looked bad for our side.

Can’t we focus? Can’t we just take care of this (huge) issue before it gets out of hand? Why do we need to muddy the waters with this?

I understand the “all our rights, all the time” argument, but it’s too complicated. Think from a 30-second sound byte perspective: if you can’t explain your stance to a 5-year old within thirty seconds, you’ve failed in modern media.

Sorry, folks, but that’s how it is. Focus, focus, focus. The narrower your points of argument, the more likely you are to win. Watch Dr. Ron Paul when he speaks in the debates during the 2008 elections.

Narrow, focused points, carefully crafted to convey the idea without wasting effort.

I realize that not all of us are as eloquent as Ron Paul and not many of us have been battling for liberty as long as he has. But let’s take a lesson from his Presidential and Campaign for Liberty campaigns. Focus!

What those who promote freedom seem to have a hard time realizing is that not everyone really wants it. At least, they don’t think they want it because they equate it with a lot of bad things. Think about that.

“Know your enemy as you know yourself.” –Sun Tzu

Here’s an example: let’s say you are anti-abortion. I would assume that at least 75% of the “conservatives” out there would agree that abortion is bad. Let’s say that I’m attempting to sell you on abortion as a good thing. How would I do that? What would be my strategy for changing your mind? Would I endlessly tell you that it’s about “women’s freedom” and “freedom of choice?” Maybe I’d harp on the whole “it’s my body, my choice” thing? Think that’d work?

Well, they’ve been doing that for years now and you aren’t convinced. Why hasn’t it worked?

Probably because they’re marketing to someone other than you. They aren’t trying to convince you, they’re trying to convince your publik skewled, brainwashed kids. You aren’t convince-able, but those kids of yours who’ve been going to the socialist brainwash camps since they were five years old? They’re convince-able.

Think about that for a minute and then think about what’s happening at these healthcare debates. We’re dealing with people who’ve been so brainwashed, that anything that looks “anti-Obama” or that appears to be in any way against the socialist agenda must be capitalist dogma and redneck Bubba talk.

Now consider this: if I showed you a passage from the Bible that says that a baby is not a human until it has been physically born and taken a breath.. what would you do? How would you react to that? I bet you’d start to question your stance on abortion.

Well, the good news is that it’s probably not in the Bible. I haven’t read it in a few days, but I’m pretty sure that’s not in there. Guess what?

The Obama Bible has direct contradictions to his health care plans. It’s right there, written by the jackephants horses themselves. It’s the legislation in Congress right now that is nothing like what Obama and friends are telling people his healthcare plans are.

It’s right there, handed to us, and easy to use.

But instead, people are bringing guns to rallies, holding up creative, but divisive signs with Obama as the Joker, and chanting things like “Liberty!” and “Freedom!” instead of “Obama is lying!” “Read the bills!” “That’s not in there either!”

See my point?

Once again, the freedom and liberty crowd is preaching to the choir instead of trying to win over new converts.

When the Mormons send their missionaries out to convert people to the LDS Church, they don’t go to other Mormon’s houses to preach the gospel. When the Jevhovah’s Witnesses walk through a neighborhood looking to bring people to Jesus, they don’t go to other Witnesses’ houses.

Why are we so intent on selling freedom to freedom lovers?

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