Destaque Internacional - Coordinator: Javier González, Buenos Aires / Madrid - Sept. 13, 2004.-

American Elections: What They Make Us Believe - and the Reality

Promoting a climate of anesthesia, through the avoidance of debates, is a strategy that enables one to understand the common denominator of the candidate Kerry, and of the Left in Latin America that supports him

The American presidential elections of next November 2 find the public opinion of that country divided, perhaps as never before, around religious, moral, and ideological themes. The existence of this division based on moral principles, with an intensity that was not seen in previous presidential contests, is little known in Latin America.

The Myth of the End of Ideologies

To the south of the Rio Grande one has been led to believe that ideologies and principles have come to be secondary.

From this myth of the end of ideologies those who have benefited above all are the ruling parties of the left, such as the Workers Party of Brazil, and the Democratic Coordination of Chile, as well as others that try to win upcoming presidential elections, such as the Extensive Front of Uruguay.

In fact, these understood - after years of presenting their revolutionary ideas such as they are, and generating with them a strong rejection from the population - that it is a lot more beneficial to resort to a climate of non-ideological anesthesia and to the relativist "consensus," leaving aside, as far as possible, the debates that one had recourse to in previous years.

This strategy is a new edition of what was called with perspicacity some decades ago, "unperceived ideological transhipment."

A Beneficial Sociopolitical Debate

The sociopolitical debate, provided that it is performed in the realm of ideas and in an invariably respectful tone, is beneficial to society, because it obliges leaders, parties and the public in general to define themselves clearly in the face of key issues. This is what is occurring, to an appreciable degree, in the United States. On the contrary, the anaesthetized and non-ideological environment is a help to those who find it to be uncomfortable when they have to define their positions, as is the case of the previously mentioned governing parties of the left in Latin America.

Kerry: Lack of Definition and Pseudo Spontaneity

Following this line of reasoning - exclusively in the sphere of the psycho-political analysis, without intending to raise a flag in the electoral contest of a country that is not ours - one observes that the candidate John Kerry is having recourse to a lack of definition, in a tone of anesthesia and in a pseudo spontaneous style, in order not to have to recognize publicly his leftist position in the face of delicate themes of a religious, moral, and political order.

With such a strategy, the Democratic candidate tries not to create enmity with important segments of American public opinion which, in their general lines, are adopting a conservative position.

Anesthesia: Demobilizing Action

It is undeniable that Kerry has been transformed into the "darling" of the leftists. In Latin America, these already understood the demobilizing efficacy of the psycho-political anesthesia, to be able to advance in the conquest of minds, while avoiding uncomfortable starts on the part of a public opinion that has sufficiently gone to sleep. But on the other hand they are uncomfortable with the adherence on the part of extensive sectors of American public opinion to family values, to healthy traditions and to the right of private property.

Attacking millions of conservative Americans directly would mean entering on a dangerous collision course with these principles, something that is the contrary to the climate of anesthesia and of consensus that they wish to create and maintain. Because of this, the left has opted to "demonize" not millions - which would be very risky politically - but a single person, the current president and the Republican candidate, George Bush, since in reality, in various aspects, he has not done anything other than fulfill the aspirations of those widespread popular sectors of his country.

The Left's Tactic: The Common Denominator

Promoting a climate of anesthesia, avoiding debates, this is a strategy that serves to do a "reading" adequate to the present Latin American and American opportunity, as well as to understand the common denominator of the political tactic of Kerry and of the Latin American left who support him.

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