Words Poorly Used #69a — Fear, II

You will often hear various people say, “fear is a great motivator.” And that is eminently true. Granted. Let’s look at a great motivator (however misguided), Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR famously spoke, “Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”  I repeat the second part, which is often left off, ” … nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes … ”  FDR was telling us that fear need not be connected to reality, and that feature has been used by fear-mongers, particularly the state’s fear-mongers, ever since.  FDR immediately launched the most massive array of paranoid bureaucratic agencies, borrowing from the model of J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI, seen so far in the memory of humankind.  Kim Davis, in my home state of Kentucky, no matter what you may think of her intent, is the logical descendant of Roosevelt. And now we turn to John Adams, who warned us, “fear is the foundation of most governments.”  And to continue, we will examine the case of petty tyrant, Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, who it appears can put people out of business at the stroke of a pen.  He has put the fear of unrestrained state power into every business owner in the state.  “Nothing is terrible except fear itself.” — Francis Bacon

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Kilgore Forelle

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