Propaganda of the Shut Down

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During the Cold War, Communist Party USA excelled at what it called “campaigns.” These were carefully concerted efforts whereby they exploited an issue or cause to further an agenda. Such agitation and propaganda campaigns were a very effective tactic vigorously employed to sway public opinion. The FBI in the 1950s produced a lengthy classified report solely on the subject of campaigns.

Sadly, but not surprisingly, this tactic is precisely what President Obama and his allies have been doing with the government shutdown. What you’re witnessing is a “shutdown campaign.”

As has been widely reported, federal employees have been ordered to exploit this crisis, to make the shutdown as uncomfortable as they can. The White House is actively soliciting complaints from the public on “how the government shutdown has affected you.” These testimonies are tools for the propaganda kit.

One infamous culmination is the display at the World War II Memorial, which has been barricaded so no visitors can get near it. I’ve been to that memorial. No government employee is needed for you to stroll up and look at it.

But for the churner of propaganda, the spectacle of elderly, crying, dying, heart-aching, wheelchair-bound WWII vets travelling miles to honor their fallen brothers, perhaps for a final earthly time, only to be denied by cruel, intransigent Republicans, is apparently just too delicious to pass up.

Well, it was only a matter of time before this propaganda ploy found a way to assault our religious liberty. And alas, that has likewise come to fruition.

As reported by Steve Skojec at Catholic Vote, priests who serve as chaplains for the U.S. military were threatened with arrest if they celebrated Mass in defiance of the government shutdown—even if they did so voluntarily.

This is an outrage. It is the literal sacred duty of these priests to celebrate Mass. Their duty is to serve the Body of Christ—and not to serve as tools of government propaganda.

For Catholic Exchange dot com and Ave Maria Radio, I’m Paul Kengor.

image: Shutterstock


Dr. Paul Kengor


Dr. Paul Kengor is professor of political science at Grove City College and executive director of The Center for Vision & Values. His books include “The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism” and “Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century.”

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  • tofubamboo

    Surely Obama would not deprive Muslims of their right to prayer. Hmmmmm…

  • ThirtyNineWinks

    So did any priest get arrested? It would have happened on Sunday, 10/6. Or were they just blocked from accessing the base? I heard this news last week, but I haven’t heard anything new since Sunday.

  • pbecke

    You are without shame, Kengor.

  • QuoVadisAnima

    Render unto caesar that which is caesar’s – caesar has ZERO authority to suppress freedom of worship.

  • Dave

    Those wascally Wepublicans are at it again. Can’t twust ’em. The O’s administration is similar to a toon: not real but laughable. Unreal but staring us right in the sacred. How long, oh Lord, how long?