Fear has been defeated — in Egypt, apparently. But Republicans are still trying to make Americans very afraid — afraid of scary brown people, afraid of those “liberal” Democrats, afraid of President Obama, afraid of Socialism, afraid of unemployment, afraid of those scary Moslems, and afraid of a host of other bogeymen that Republicans conjure up. And in November, 2010, they apparently succeeded in scaring the bejeesus out of the “mature” population that votes in off-year elections. In fact, what the Republicans fear is the loss of fear.
The elections in 2012 may be decided by whether or not the American people are still afraid — or whether Obama can convey a sense of optimism and hope that he brewed in 2008.
Republicans like Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin are trying to make us afraid of unions — especially unions of public employees. In Republican eyes, they’ve got three strikes against them: First, they’re union. Second, they work for the government. Third, and worst of all, most of them are Democrats! That’s why they won’t let Obama form a Works Projects/Progress Administration (WPA) like Roosevelt used to beat the Depression. But Walker and his Tea Party buddies made a miscalculation, and in Wisconsin, his union-busting proposals have driven the Youth and Labor into each others arms. This may be the thing that will energize the under-30 demographic and get them involved, and Walker is handing this gift to Obama on a silver platter. The stakes are enormous.