“Republicans are strong. Democrats are smart.”
Just hear me out…
Shortly after graduating college, I came across a book called “The Clam-Plate Orgy.” I read it quickly.
Yes, the author was saying that embedded into the image of a dinner plate of fried seafood, including clams, on the cover of a menu at some restaurant like Denny’s, were people having an orgy. The forms of the clams were the people having the orgy. The author claimed the image was subconsciously evoking sexual desires that were suggesting could be satiated by eating at this restaurant when we get hungry. Sex sells food too, according to the author.
Now, whether there really was a clam-plate orgy is immaterial. Personally, I didn’t see it.
However, what was fascinating was the author’s claims about how the subconscious mind works and how advertisers use this knowledge to manipulate us. Essentially, as per what I remember from twenty-two years ago, at the subconscious level our minds are far more emotional and thus reactive. Memories, images, sounds and sensations are combined with each other in ways that we are not consciously aware of, yet, those combinations have powerful effects on creating impulses, urges and longings that motivate our behavior, weather we realize it or not. The advertising industry deliberately creates those impulses, urges and longings through manipulative advertising to compel us to spend money on product over another,
Again, all this is supposed to be happening below the surface of our conscious minds, and this technology was discovered through billions of dollars spent by the advertising industry in psychological research to determine what could be used to motivate consumers to spend money on one product over another. The research sought to uncover our inner animals and fools that could be trained and deceived. Which firm spent how much on each study I don’t recall, but, the concept that our minds are constantly exposed to massive amounts of subliminal manipulation, conjured by billion-dollar psychological research ventures, which motivate us in ways we don’t realize is something to consider.
Three examples of this dynamic of how advertisers employ simple subconscious cues to motivate us to buy one product over another come to mind.
Marlboro vs. Camel. If you smoke Marlborough, you’re a rugged, individualist cowboy. You’re John Wayne. If you smoke Camel, you’re cool. You’re James Dean.
Of course that’s nonsense. Camel and Marlborough are both just cigarettes. They’re tobacco and paper. There’s no real difference between them. Yet, in the mind of consumers there is a difference, and the greatest evidence of that psychologically fabricated difference existing is the loyalty to one brand over the other, even though both brands are essentially the same thing. I maintain that this loyalty owes itself to advertisers knowing how to manipulate people into thinking that the type of cigarette you smoke says something about you: you are a cowboy, or you are cool.
Let me give two more examples before I get to my point about Republicans and Democrats. They are outdated examples from the 80’s and 90’s. More current ones exist. However, I haven’t watch TV for decades, so, I don’t have better examples. But Xers and Boomers will remember.
How about Coke vs. Pepsi? You remember Coca Cola Classic? You remember that Pepsi was the choice of a new generation?
“I more of a classical American. I drink Coke.”
“Oh yeah? Well, I’m trendy. I break with tradition. I drink Pepsi. I’m part of the new generation and this is my choice.”
Maybe there is more subtlety to be gleaned from this Coke vs. Pepsi dynamic. Still, I do believe advertisers had discovered that the battle for control of the market in caffeinated sugar-water had something to do with projecting an image about yourself, as cigarettes obviously projected something about yourself.
How about cars? You know darn well cars are attempts to project images about yourself. There may be no other thing that projects more about who you are (at least in your mind) than a car. Well, Chevy was once styled as the Heartbeat of America. If you drove one, you were a real American. However, if you drove a Ford, you were tough.
You think this is exaggeration? You think this is clam-plate orgy nonsense? Maybe it is. But I don’t think so. I think the billions spent on psychological research in determining what appeals to our most reactionary impulses discovered things about us that we ourselves don’t know and would make us wince or make us sick if we knew. I believe we are far more manipulated than we realize.
Now let me get to point. I can’t prove the following, but I believe it’s real.
I think the Republican Party sold itself as projecting strength for its followers. I think the Democratic Party sold itself as projecting intelligence for its followers.
Republican strong. Democrat smart. Marlborough cowboy. Camel cool. Coke classical. Pepsi progressive.
Why do I say this about Republicans and Democrats? Really, it’s just a hunch from what I’ve observed over the decades. Mock if you want.
Nonetheless, Republicans really like to say stupid things like “I support the troops” or “I back the blue” which is to say that they appreciate armed government agents who, in their minds, maintain the order of society, without the which chaos would ensue. The strength of those armed government agents makes that order in the first place. They love that strength. Therefore they too are strong.
Democrats have loved to say stupid slogans like “It takes a village” or “We’re the only country with public health care” which is to say that they think it is the role of government to forcibly take wealth and redistribute that wealth in a different form for the greater good of the community. Democrats think forcible redistribution is the way unto a better order of society, or a progressive order, which is smart. After all you are a stupid neanderthal if you don’t want to be progressive and smart.
Essentially, Republicans love warfare. Democrats love welfare. Of course, regardless of which part gets in power, neither goes away. Both parties are authoritarian and anti-American. Both grow the size of government, and increase the debt, and allow parasites to make a living off the producers of society. The status quo always remains. How are these two parties really that different? A cigarette’s a cigarette. Sugar water’s sugar water. A car’s a car.
The difference is in people’s minds.
I’m not saying all people tricked by this manipulation are bad. I’m not saying I disagree with them on everything. I’m not. But, America is so far from the ideal of where they’re supposed to be, and it’s because we’ve been led astray by evil mass manipulators, and the tricks they’ve employed should have been recognized long ago, but they’re still not.
Regardless, you’re not smart just because you vote Democrat. You’re not strong just because you vote Republican.
FEATURED IMAGE FROM: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Donkey_and_elephant_-democrat_blue_and_republican_red-_polygon_rough.jpg