Fear mongering (or scare mongering) is the use of fear to influence the opinions and actions of others towards some specific end. The feared object or subject is sometimes exaggerated, and the pattern of fear mongering is usually one of repetition, in order to continuously reinforce the intended effects of this tactic, sometimes in the form of a vicious circle.
These are high times for fear mongering. Not since the great Swine Flu scare of ... oh, 6 months ago have we experienced such a spate of nonsense coming from people who profess to know something about nothing. It's the latest epidemic.
They call it "Obamacare" and talk about us living in the "USSA," because they are afraid that what is going on now in politics will ultimately be bad for the country. These are the same people who stood by over the last 8 years and watched a complete nincompoop run us into the ground. Where were their words of warning then?
Afterward, they watched John McCain pick a dimwitted mayor as a running mate and stood idly by while she "you betcha'd" the country into an image-induced coma. Now, she writes books and produces TV shows in order to keep her face in public. Am I afraid? You betcha. But at least I'm afraid of something that is real, not something imagined or something that people tell me I should be afraid of.
I'm supposed to be afraid of the new health care legislation. Just like our ancestors were supposed to be afraid of Social Security, television or the horseless carriage. Every generation has its backward thinkers that believe that anything new is bad. I still remember how we were told that computers would increase unemployment, as hordes of workers would no longer have jobs. Meanwhile, more people work in the computer-based service industry than in industry itself, so where are those worriers now? Probably unemployed.
SHORT PERSONAL STORY: I was a part of a company that instituted computer-aided drafting (CAD) to replace paper drawings back in the mid-1980s. One old-timer refused to be part of the movement and continued to do his drawings with pencils on paper. Every once in a while the power would go out, prompting him to proclaim, "My drawing is still taped to the board!" It was, but his career was still taped to the board too, and those of us who embraced the change to computers saw our careers flourish, while those who kept drawing with pencils were probably left selling them out of cups on a street corner.
Change is hard for people, and the more narrow-minded you are, the harder it is. When change comes it requires adaptation, and we do not adapt well. We like to go along doing the same things the same way, because it requires zero effort. We are also easily led by people who yell the loudest. Take a break from the yelling and stop and listen. You'll find that the quiet is calming.
Like they say in the movies, "America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You've got to want it bad, because it's gonna put up a fight."
Some of you don't want to fight. Some of you want to go along to get along, and the longer things remain the same the better you like it. Sometimes, you have to change for change's sake. Sometimes, you have to take the tape off the board and work at something you might think is ridiculous but will be a benefit in the long run.
Think about something besides yourself for a change.