The Political Art of Fear-Mongering and Fundraising

SAN DIEGO, Ca., May 2, 2018 – The DNC and RNC have evolved into fundraising organizations. They no longer offer cogent solutions to our nation’s challenges.  hey simply try to fan the flames of hyper-partisan positions and extract money as they go.

If you ever venture onto one of the Parties’ websites, you will almost immediately begin to receive “personal” emails from high-ranking government officials, their family members, and a few famous celebrities. Please pretend that you really believe they sent the emails to you.

In their quests for cash, both Parties exploit harmless things such as presidential birthdays as well as those of their spouses. “Please sign the card… and make a donation.”  As campaigns become more expensive, expect the birthday solicitations to expand to include the birthdays of the President’s children, grandchildren, first cousins, gardener, etc. to help fill the gaps.

The Parties also like to survey you as if your opinion matters. The issues are usually irrelevant (“Which bumper sticker design do you like?”) or self-serving (“How would you grade the President’s performance: A+, A, or A-?). When you try to submit your answer, you’ll be hustled for a donation.

You may even be able to have dinner with the President who, rest assured, is “really eager to meet you.” Just donate to enter the drawing.

In the grand scheme of things, these are fairly innocuous methods of separating you from your money. The more sinister ones are viciously opportunistic.

The Republican Party routinely features ominous warnings about “fake news” and the media’s unfair assault on the President. It alerts you to how “witch hunts” and the “deep state” are destroying our country. You will be exposed to how our nation is in danger of being overrun by murderous hordes if a wall isn’t built in time.

The Democrat Party likes to focus on allegations of collusion, personnel turnover within the Administration, and spending abuses among Cabinet members (as if those haven’t occurred in the past). It also likes to suggest that the President is about to fire a Special Prosecutor, Deputy Attorney General, or someone else deemed to be fighting for justice or at least serving as an advocate for the resistance. According to the emails, a constitutional crisis is on the horizon that may well spell doom for our country if Republican advocacy for polluted air and water doesn’t kill you first.

However, the most distasteful campaigns are the ones that exploit human suffering.  When a tragic event occurs, the Parties circle like vultures over a decaying carcass.  They immediately default to their most polarizing positions that are designed to evoke visceral reactions among their respective bases.

For example, both Parties shamelessly capitalized on the recent Parkland school shooting. Apparently, the more victims the better from a fundraising perspective.

With respect to Parkland, the RNC and its supportive PACs immediately sounded the alarm that Democrats were committed to repealing the Second Amendment and confiscating your guns. They were quick to argue that “Guns don’t kill people – people kill people,” as if an intelligent discussion of the issue would be pointless. Correspondingly, the airways were flooded with celebrity spokespersons who explained why gun control is anti-American and an overt attempt to destroy the country.

Meanwhile, the DNC and its supportive PACs manipulated young survivors; weaving them into the narrative for their emotional impact. There were four such solicitations on the day of the shooting and 19 more over the next few weeks (23 total) …and the money flowed. The DNC argued that anyone with a gun is a threat regardless of their mental state. It also called for banning assault weapons, or rather anything that looks like an assault weapon, while continuing to ignore the appalling handgun murder rates in the major cities it has controlled for decades.

On a positive note, all our nation’s issues apparently can be solved for the amazingly low price of $3. That seems to be the threshold level for donations in our current political environment. Of course, it scales to $10, $25, $50, $100, and “other” should you be so inclined, but $3 is the magic number. It seems that every one of your Party’s candidates will lose if you don’t chip in $3.

Additionally, the need is always “URGENT” …particularly on the last day of an FEC reporting period. Of course, your donation will be equally important the next day. It will just have to be based on a birthday, survey, or with any luck, a horrific tragedy. If all else fails, the Parties will push the inevitable sale of tchotchke items like t-shirts, hats, pens, and other memorabilia that will make you feel like part of the team.

If you’re offended by the intellectually demeaning way the Parties solicit your money, do something about it. If you want to witness meaningful change, stop responding to their fundraising campaigns with a donation. If the monetary tap begins to run dry, they will be forced to change their tactics. It may even force them to try to earn your support by offering actual solutions. Imagine how rewarding it would be to receive that type of solicitation.


T.J. O’Hara is an internationally recognized author, speaker, and strategic consultant in the private and public sectors. In 2012, he emerged as the leading independent candidate for the Office of President of the United States and the first nominee of the Whig Party in over 150 years. He also has served as the Principal Political Analyst and host of Deconstructed for the Independent Voter News (IVN).


This article first appeared in T.J. O’Hara’s recurring column, Deconstructed, in the Independent Voter News (IVN).