The National Republican Congressional Committee announced Friday a quartet of new ads focusing on national security. One, airing against Rep. Dan Maffei of New York, accuses the congressman of "backing constitutional rights for foreign terrorists." Another, in a bellwether Iowa district, claims that Democratic candidate Staci Appel supports "passports for terrorists." These ads open with footage from Islamic State fighters.One of the most insistent alarmists is David Perdue, running for the Senate against Michelle Nunn in Georgia. His ads accuse Nunn of “supporting aid for terrorists” -- this is one of those long causal chains connecting some Islamic charity that was once one of George Bush I's “ten thousand points of light” to Hamas -- and also tries to drag in immigration: “She’s for amnesty, while terrorism experts say our border breakdown could provide an entry for groups like ISIS!”
Yeah, our “Open Border,” where we have recently spent several billion dollars building fences and beefing up security; did you know that the Feds spend more on border control than on all other law enforcement activities put together?
I have to say I am puzzled over this. I regard ISIS as a bunch of monsters and a menace to the security of the Middle East, but the notion that they present a serious threat to Americans strikes me as overblown. You mean to say that your life is so sweet, orderly and safe that your biggest worry is would-be caliphs on the other side of the world? I suppose the point is that gruesome images from Syria and Iraq make Obama look weak; but don't we have worse problems?
Here's another question: at what point does the constant exaggeration of our problems by political alarmists -- Ron Paulites who think civilization is collapsing, security hawks who claim ISIS is after your children, leftists who think Fascists in the NSA and CIA control the country -- begin to weigh heavily on the national mood? Is one reason people in the modern world are so anxious and depressed that we are constantly bombarded by alarmist messages? I get ads every day that say some investment guru is predicting a "25 year depression," and since my internet profile is mostly liberal, I am sure others get much more of that sort of thing. Gun owners constantly hear that Obama is after their guns; environmentalists that global warming is some sort of existential threat; and then there's the way we make every school shooting into a media frenzy.
People need to relax. And politicians who fish for votes by spreading unjustified panic have a lot to answer for.