The power of dreams and the power of nightmares.

There are patterns in politics which are hardy perennials. They’ve been there for as long as politics has been around, which is to say forever. Politicians need you to vote for them and the way they do this is to sell you something. The thing they sell you of course is a promise but to sell it, they must already have your attention or get your attention. Unless they’ve got that, it’ll be a no sale.

The particular promise made varies with the times and the circumstances but the way it’s sold always utilises one of two techniques; the power of dreams or the power of nightmares. They’re both, in their own way, aimed at assuaging our fears. Some of those fears are frighteningly real, some are just illusory.

When times are bad, as they are now, they’ll use the power of dreams because people are already scared and boy are they looking for someone to fix things. When people are desperate, afraid for their jobs and worried about making ends meet, they’re ready to be sold the dream. Vote for me and I will get you back to work. I will cure the economy. Vote for me and I will bring back the good old days. Vote for me and I’ll make our country great again. I’m the one who can really turn this thing around. I’m Mr. Feelgood; vote for me and I’ll set you free.

For some reason, this sort of sales job on the electorate always comes with great slogans. The latest one of course was “We can do it”. What exactly “we” were going to do or how “we” were going to do it or precisely what “it” was, was somehow never quite enunciated throughout the whole of the presidential election but the slogan was more than enough to catapult him into the White House. The dream had yet again been successfully sold. Everyone was well stoked up to await the coming of the New Jerusalem.

The downside of selling the dream is that since times really are bad, you really do have to do something effective once you’ve ridden the crest of euphoria into office. It’s time to deliver and given the level of expectation you’ve created, excuses are simply not an option. If the right man is in office though, it can be done. FDR sold America the dream and inherited an America in the teeth of the worst recession in its entire history. Through a combination of real action and a ruthlessness that’s not often acknowledged, he got America back on its feet. It took years but he kept his voters on side with things like his fireside chats and while things didn’t get better immediately, they stopped getting worse. He succeeded in the end, which was why he was held in such high esteem and outright affection by the ordinary people of America. He was an exception to Powell’s rule; his political career didn’t end in ruins.

On pretty much every front, Obama has not delivered. His fall from grace has been as meteoric as his rise to fame. Within a year of taking office, he was friendless across America and across the whole political spectrum too. Weak and vacillating leadership in times of real emergency is no good to anyone. Basically, he’s been found out. In the absence of any other Democrat candidate willing to step forward, he’s going to run for the presidency again but everyone, including himself, knows that barring a miracle, he’ll just be taking a bullet for the party. While the coming presidential election will get some attention from the party’s political strategists, it’s trying to find a way to win the one after that which is really occupying their minds.

When times are good, the problem politicians have is that nobody is interested in them or in politics either. People’s lives are running along smoothly; they’ve got secure jobs and can even afford a few amenities and luxuries too. The politicians have to get their attention so they can sell them the promise. This is where the power of nightmares comes in. They have to snap people out of their indifference by finding something to scare them with.

Global Warming fitted the bill perfectly. As the scary scenarios started coming out, the politicians took note of the Alarmists, who then obligingly produced even scarier ones. A classic feedback loop developed. The Alarmists got lots more money for research which produced increasingly scary results. People got more and more scared about something that had never bothered them before and the politicians, all claiming to save us from this new nightmare, picked up more and more votes.

The amount of first-rate scientists producing the IPCC reports declined but the amount of propagandists increased. As the standard of the science went down the toilet, the raw naked advocacy went through the roof. This all came to a frenzied peak somewhere about the time of the Copenhagen climate conference. We actually reached a point where we had the spectacle of a Prime Minister of the United Kingdom openly declaring that we had “fifty days to save the planet” and not being laughed off the podium.

The recession put paid to the need to sell phoney nightmares. The voter has real concerns now and they centre about life’s basics; jobs and money. They’re hurting so they’re looking to the politicians again and paying attention. The politicians have adjusted their selling strategy in response. They’ve gone back to selling dreams. Add in the decline in the credibility of science due to Climategate et al, and you can see why the politicians have already jumped off the bandwagon.

The real climate powerbrokers were always the politicians and the scientists were always just their means to power. The politicians won’t be venturing into the political danger zone to save them either. They were always disposable. After all, a political career is so much more valuable than an academic one.

So there you have it, the power of dreams and the power of nightmares. Perhaps it’s time for the sleeper to awake.

©Pointman

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Comments
27 Responses to “The power of dreams and the power of nightmares.”
  1. ThomasJ says:

    Interesting post – as always, Pointman. Thanks.
    Here in Sweden – ‘the forerunner for all societies’, according our ‘leaders’ – the scrutinies of HOW have emerged to a new label: ‘Demokratur’. In Swedish, democracy is: demokrati, dictarship is: diktatur. Ok? So now you might grasp what’s all about. One can even google on ‘demokratur’ (at least in Swedish) and find out what’s defined.
    Not a positive perspective – and, worse! – it looks the same for all of EU.

    BTW: in the beginning of the -80’ies, Denmark was at a catastrophic point (although not as bad as Greece is today…) and a poet labelled: “Det gör ont i mitt Land” = ‘My Country hurts [me]”. They, the Danish, came through that crisis, we still have to go through – regardless of how at moment extremely good figures are.

    We haven’t had any ‘major’ crisis (war) since 1809. I think that is one of many facts leading to the mentally of the elitiest’s position this country’s politocrats try (and by enormous money-help) to achieve – for their own sake, only!

    Best regards from the Bestcoast!

    //TJ

    • Blackswan says:

      Hello ThomasJ,

      At least there is a degree of honesty in your new word combining democracy with dictatorship.

      For the rest of us we are still deluded into thinking we have Democratic Government ‘of the people, by the people’. The reality is that the majority do NOT want the policies being Dictated to us by the Political Elite.
      Also, we have the best interests of Minorities of our populations dictating the policies and behaviour of the majority.

      Maybe we should create a new English word that will convey Extreme Hypocrisy.

      • ThomasJ says:

        Hello Blackswan,
        Yes, it certainly seems to be a lot of ‘movements’ – especially in the UK:
        http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/2011/05/voters-alliance.html

        Hopefully, these all (individual) common senses manage in merging their efforts, inspirations, knowledge, competence and so on into a ‘single’ body of combined power to bring about a change, a real change!, of the society.

        Do not know, however, if any such initiative has any chances of establishment here in Sweden… sic! Especially as our educations system has since ~ 35 years abandonded the subject History from the schools. You just cannot imagine how deep the ignorance is here – it’s really scaring! But, ruling a stupified society is no challange at all, nor is there a need of any form of competence and to get proof hereof one can check out the various ‘leaders’ we’ve had over tha last couple of centuries… God grief!

        As to the EU, my rather close to 100% conviction is, that it will implode from its own internal, politocratical weight. It’s only (?) a matter of when…

        Have a nice weekend!
        Best regards from Swedens Bestcoast!
        //TJ

      • mlpinaus says:

        Swan..A new word indicating Extreme Hypocrisy…. Flannery?

        Marcus

  2. Keith Hill says:

    An insightful post again Pointman.

    Here in Australia we have a lying Prime Minister Julia Gillard (there will be no carbon tax under any governent I lead) who sold out to three Independents and a solitary Green to retain power and promptly backflipped on her pre-election promise to the electorate.

    We now efffectively have an asylum run by the inmates giving us arguably the worst, most inept government in Australia’s history. They were well and truly on the run with an unparallelled rcord of massive rorts and financial mismanagement of numerous bungled schemes and the majority of Australians opposed to their destructve proposed Carbon Tax.

    The Liberal Opposition was riding high until former leader ex-Goldman Sachs manager and carbon tax enthusiast Malcolm Turnbull decided to try and undermine current Leader Tony Abbott. Coupled with an inarticulate cringeworthy warmist Shadow Minister for Climate Change, Hunt, a closet warmist Shadow Treasurer Hockey whose wife manages a merchant Bank and a Left-biased MSM only too eager to take the heat off the Labor/Green/Independent government., the Opposition is looking increasingly fractured and could well snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by the time of the next election.

    As for finance, Labor has been fortunate in that there is an avalanche of money and investment in the pipeline from the sale of minerals and other resources to China. Of course the other side of that is, if China suffers a downturn we are down the gurgler!

    On the politics again, for my own part and many others I would think, we are reaching the stage of saying “a pox on both your houses”! If it wasn’t for the havoc that will be wrought on our young people already struggling with rapidly risng costs of services and commodities and battling to keep up with mortgages, I’d say it could be cathartic for the country to experience the ravages of idiotic Green/Labor policies as a result of the AGW scam. One can only hope irreparable damage is not done before people finally wake up!

    • mlpinaus says:

      ” a pox upon both your houses “…… exactly how I feel. Neither side of the pig shambles speak for me and mine. Time perhaps to remember the Gold Rush days and the miners revolt…..

      Marcus

      • Blackswan says:

        Hey Marcus,

        I’m always reminded of the miners’ revolt – I wear a Eureka flag lapel pin …. LOL
        Tried to buy a Eureka flag to fly outside my house last year and found it was ridiculously expensive cheap rubbish ‘Made in China’. Nah, I send emails to politicians instead.

  3. Blackswan says:

    G’day Keith,

    Well, you’ve put our Aussie experience very succinctly. Seems the odious Greens Leader Bob Brown has finally been found out by the MSM as the duplicitous liar he has always been. He said that the Queensland flood damage should be paid for by coal miners as they were responsible for AGW – then denied it, also said he wanted all coal mining and coal power plants shut down – then denied it. When journalists finally called him on it he called them the “Hate Media”.

    The Pointman is right; the Gangrenes Utopian Dream Run is turning into a nightmare – for them, as Australians wake up to the awful Reality of food-on-the-table and a roof-over-their-heads. People have been sleep-walking through their lives wrapped in cosy complacency and are finally waking up to the propaganda and psychological marketing ploys used by these Political Thugs to infiltrate every facet of our lives.

    As for “a pox on both your houses”, much as we would like to protect our younger generations from the financial calamity that awaits them, I fear that the only way they will finally learn that Credit and Insurmountable Debt is no way to run a household any more than it is any way to run a National Economy, is if the bubble finally bursts. Then it is they who will demand change.

  4. Blackswan says:

    Pointman,

    It seems the engineers on the CAGW Gravy Train are in desperation mode.

    They have recruited a brace of well-loved Socialist/Marxist Aussie actors headed by multi-millionaire Cate Blanchett to appeal to recalcitrant Australians who are telling them to take their Carbon Dioxide Tax and shove it.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/business-wants-low-carbon-starting-price/story-fn59niix-1226064883425

    The ads (costing a million dollars) kick off a “Say Yes week of action” led by the Australian Conservation Foundation, GetUp, Greenpeace, WWF, the Climate Action Network, The Climate Institute, the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, Environment Victoria, and the ACTU.” (That’s the Australian Council of Trade Unions, chief source of Labor Party funding, which received $10 million in our recent Budget to “better communicate with their members”. Nobody batted an eyelid).

    Every one of those organisations is greedily suckling on the taxpayer teat, and as for the Trade Unions, it is their membership who will be first on the dole queues as our Industry and Manufacturing is strangled into oblivion.

    “There has been a significant scare campaign out there and there’s been a lot of companies looking after their own self-interest,” Mr Connor said.

    “Australia is a high-polluting economy and we want to get the simple fact through that this approach would be one which started to make the big companies pay for their pollution. If you do that you can not only have money for clean energy but also money to help low- and middle-income households.”

    “High-polluting economy”? Even the Flim Flam Man (Climate Commission head, paleontologist Tim Flannery) has conceded in a radio interview, that even if all Co2 emissions suddenly vanished in Australia there would be less than ONE degreeC of difference in global climate and even that may not happen “for a thousand years”.

    It would be nice to think that this massive global Fraud will simply fade away but the reality is, in this neck of the woods, justification for ramming this unconscionable Tax through our Legislature is reaching fever pitch.

    You’re right Pointman, the nightmare they’ve been selling isn’t quite convincing some folks so they are using the oh-so-familiar smiling faces of our celebrities to sell the dream of a better world for our children. Shame those same kids are destined to be debt-slaves, their labour and productivity bought and sold on the international money markets.

    This nightmare isn’t over by a long shot.

    • mlpinaus says:

      Swan, been away flying in the Grampians for a bit, and come back to see a bunch of rich people, made rich by an ability to play “pretend”, telling me how I need to live….. Time for a Scottish moment. Perhaps a single malt time…. or to slip my dirk slowly out of its sock….
      regards
      Marcus

      • Blackswan says:

        Hehe – great idea Marcus.

        Spent some time in the Grampians last year – nice part of the world.

        Professional ‘mouthpieces’ selling this Scam is really the last straw for many people. It should be interesting to see if they’ll get away with it.

  5. Pointman says:

    Looking at the political situation in Australia at the moment, I simply don’t see any sense in it. Pushing for a Carbon Tax when the economy is already shaky is political and economic madness. I can’t see how the ALP or any of its politicians can possibly gain from it and all the possible outcome scenarios are lethal for both the party and them personally.

    They’re still selling future nightmares to an electorate who’re already fearful about the here and now. I can only conclude the politicians are stoopid.

    Pointman

    • Blackswan says:

      Pointman,

      The Gangrenes are holding Gillard to ransom – she either caves in to their demands or the minority Govt falls and if they go to another election they’ll all be wiped off the political map for a generation.

      Bob Brown has been shooting for this brass ring for 30 years, it’s his one shot then it’s all over for him. He has been a bit of a joke in the Senate for years and has never had so much power. He’s desperate and so is she. The Greens will have a majority in the Senate from July 1st this year and if she doesn’t concede to their demands they’ll pass nothing that she sees as other landmark legislation.

      “You do this, or we won’t give you that”. It’s how they’ve always wangled their policies into laws and regulations.

      You’re right – they are so blinded by their success in mounting a coup at the last election and seizing power from the majority-elected current Opposition, that they are way too stoopid to see they are guaranteeing their own political demise. Arrogant and stoopid.

      Aussies have had enough.

      • mlpinaus says:

        “Aussies have had enough….” Hope so. This one has. Wife says that most of her patients have had it too. Except those that have put in solar panels, …. they like the power meter going backwards…. one regards it as a 7% return on his money. About a 12.5 year payback…..
        Oh dear……not rentable by Philips Industries old standards… without factoring in the risk of goverment lowering feedin prices.
        regards
        Marcus

    • Blackswan says:

      Pointman,

      This is how Parliaments respond when people have tried to ‘tell it like it is’……….

      http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/upper-house-whip-under-fire-for-nazi-slur-on-scientists-20110601-1fgq0.html

      They are either gagged or censured on spurious grounds and the MSM runs with it.

  6. Blackswan says:

    Another example of how the MSM deals with people who tell the truth……..

    “the media watchdog prepares to investigate talkback host Alan Jones over his climate change coverage”

    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/society-and-culture/you-are-just-plain-wrong-about-climate-change-mr-jones-20110601-1ffhd.html#poll

    “No wonder he has agreed to be the founding patron of Australia’s newest and arguably most extreme climate-science denier organisation – the paradoxically titled Galileo Movement.

    This group’s leaders aren’t merely sceptical about mainstream climate science – they outright deny that the world is warming (the thermometers are in the wrong place). They scoff at the idea that human activity can cause warming (carbon dioxide is just plant food); and they even reject that global warming could be harmful (relax, do nothing – it’s natural).

    Instead, they fervently believe that it’s all part of a secret ideological conspiracy by corrupt scientists using fake data to collude with greenies, socialists, libertarians and the United Nations to falsely alarm the gullible and enrich themselves by stealing our money and sovereignty. Fair dinkum.”

    Even the Prime Minister, who gets to write an ‘Opinion’ column in the Sydney Telegraph to push her Carbon Dioxide Tax barrow, exhorts us that…..

    “With the science so clear we shouldn’t waste time on shock jocks or politicians who rely on false claims to run their scare campaigns. They quote one crank or another in the same way people have argued the world is flat.”

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/opinion/dont-listen-to-shock-jocks-on-carbon/story-e6frezz0-1226065130802

    Seems the Orange Roughy, so threatened by Jones’ clarion call to reality, is turning her Media attack dogs onto Jones, the most influential broadcaster in the country. He is part owner of the Broadcasting Network from which he is heard over most of Eastern Australia, so perhaps their broadcasting license itself could be at risk.

    Perhaps the Roughy has overstepped the mark – Jones has reeeally deep pockets and so has his partner in broadcasting, John Singleton, who made his mega-millions in the world of advertising and marketing. If it came to a court of law to render these men ineffectual in fighting her justification for this fraudulent Tax, it may well be the first time that these claims and counter-claims over the environment will be legally tested in this country.

    Bring it on, you stupid cow!!!!

    • mlpinaus says:

      Don’t get the lawyers in…..just let the pollsters keep it going as it is. Should be enough to panic a youngish back bencher with ambition…..
      Marcus

      • Pointman says:

        Hi Marcus. Yes, it would be a good way for a young turk on the back benches to shoot to fame. Whether he could ride that tiger to higher things would be interesting to watch. You never know …

        Pointman

      • Blackswan says:

        G’day Marcus,

        Good idea ……… if only.

        The way the apparatchiks of the Party Machine operate, it would indeed take an exceptional character to flout the Socialist diktats and go-it-alone as they would inevitably have to do. The fate of one Pauline Hanson comes to mind, though there is now a court case looming revealing that officers of the Electoral Commission conspired to rig her vote to fail in the NSW Upper House elections.

        The sorry saga of the Hanson experience is enough to make any aspiring MP think twice and perhaps a court of law is the only place where these matters can be tested. At least such an action got her out of prison where she languished on trumped-up charges of electoral fraud. No wonder she wants to see corrupt Electoral officers get their comeuppance.

  7. Blackswan says:

    Pointman,

    The ‘dream’ of the Blanchett Carbon ads prompted a furious community backlash, so they’ve reverted to the nightmare scenario, not to mention a little pseudo-victimisation for good measure…..

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/australian-national-university-scientists-moved-to-safe-location-after-threats/story-e6frg6nf-1226069184389

    “A CANBERRA university has increased security following death threats to its climate scientists, some of whom were moved to a safer location.

    The Australian National University has received a large number of e-mails with threatening and abusive language directed at some of its scientists.”

    They claim that the ‘scientists’ felt so threatened they have had to spend public money relocating them. Do they mean their workplace or their residential location? Very vague. How peculiar that such dire threats have not been put in the hands of the Federal Police to investigate, trace and prosecute.

    These threat scenarios are the last refuge of liars and scoundrels – everywhere. We had Phil Jones of the UEA CRU doing the same thing. Seems when a liar or a fool has no character or integrity they play the victim card.

    The real kicker was when the twerp from the ANU said, “Academics and scientists are actually really not equipped to be treated in this way.”

    What the….? These people have no compunction about their ludicrous doomsday scenarios robbing people around the world of their livelihoods, of bleeding national Economies dry, and then bleat that they aren’t “equipped” to be roundly criticised for it.

    Now I’ve heard everything.

    • Pointman says:

      Maybe someone sent them an email saying “We know who you are. we know where you live …”. Naw, it’s only the communications director of Greenpeace who’d do anything like that.

      Pointman

    • “Now I’ve heard everything” ……. five days later, er no, not quite.

      “Claims prominent climate change scientists had recently received death threats have been revealed as an opportunistic ploy, with the Australian National University admitting that they occurred up to five years ago.

      Only two of ANU’s climate change scientists allegedly received death threats, the first in a letter posted in 2006-2007 and the other an offhand remark made in person 12 months ago.”

      http://blogs.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/timblair/index.php/dailytelegraph/comments/false_alarmists/

      And these people demand their credibility be shoved down our throats and insist on our unquestioning acquiescence to every edict that issues from the Halls of Academia. Yeah, right.

      • Pointman says:

        The spin merchants got the headline they wanted. You can bet the truth won’t make the headlines either. Nice to have a compliant MSM, isn’t it?

        Pointman

  8. Blackswan says:

    The ‘nightmare’ continues…………

    “THOUSANDS of roads, railway lines, homes and commercial buildings along Australia’s coastline are at risk from rising sea levels caused by climate change.”

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/rising-sea-to-swallow-our-coast-thousands-of-homes-at-risk/story-e6freuy9-1226069354746

    “Climate Change Minister Greg Combet told The Sunday Telegraph a new report warns doing nothing is not an option, with up to 274,000 residential homes at risk.

    The Climate Change Risks to Coastal Settlements and Industry report warns the findings have major implications for multimillion-dollar developments along our coastline.”

    We now have local Councils refusing building permits to landowners who bought coastal property in ‘residential’ zoned areas – their property values have nose-dived, nothing can be built.

    Seas have risen by 1.8mm a year in 40 years? My toenails grow quicker than that. This has all been proven to be rubbish by the late Prof John L. Daly whose untimely death in 2004 was such “cheering news” to the fraudster Phil Jones in his emails to colleagues.

    http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2009/11/john-l-daly

    “Daly’s last great battle with the “science-is-settled coalition” was over a small line and arrow carved into a rock on the shoreline of the Isle of the Dead, at Port Arthur, Tasmania. It was placed there by the Antarctic explorer Captain James Clark Ross in 1841 to mark the Mean Sea Level in Tasmania.”

    That tidal marker can still be seen today, still at the high tide point after 170 years.

    http://www.john-daly.com/dalybio.htm

    How many millions of taxpayer dollars did the ‘Climate Change Risks to Coastal Settlements and Industry report’ cost Australians? An utter waste of money when Daly has already done the work for them. And what is the ‘risk’ to our coastline from carbon dioxide emissions? Absolutely zero.

    This is nothing short of criminal fraud.

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