Contrary to what McCain's said lately, McCain believes that the biggest concern for Americans is not the economy but radical Islam.
Republicans highlighted this at the convention, saying that democrats were too scared to say "radical Islam" but that republicans aren't afraid to say it.
Conservative republican sites such as humanevents.com, freerepublic.com and worldnetdaily, and talk radio wingnut Rush Limbaugh, push the notion of radical Islam. It's a concerted effort.
But what they won't tell you in public is that they don't believe there is a difference between Islam and radical Islam. They seem to believe Islam, by nature, is a bad religion.
They also know that many Americans don't differentiate between someone who practices the Islamic faith, a Muslim, and someone who is a radical Islamist.
Which leads me to the covert campaign to smear Obama. At the same time republicans push radical Islam as the scourge of the Earth, they push the lie that Obama is a Muslim in smear email chains and all over the Internet. It's been going on for at least a year now.
For the people vulnerable to this message -- folks a little scared of voting for a black man -- making the connection between Islam and Obama is a no brainer (it really is). It gives them comfort in opposing Obama, and not seeking their own information. It matches their worldview.
I'm not saying that there aren't radical Islamists. I'm saying that conservatives lump these terrorist groups under the radical Islam umbrella for propaganda purposes.
The smear campaign has been stepped up. Recently, subscribers to 70 different newspapers in swing states received a DVD called "Obsession" about radical islam, which hints that Obama is Muslim. The DVD was produced by the charity, Clarion Fund, which got some of its money from a secret donor.
But, filled with dire warnings about Islamic terrorists, it hit doorsteps seven weeks before Election Day. And critics say it fuels the false whisper campaign that Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim.It was made in 2006 and it is propaganda to scare up some votes for McCain.
This is why McCain can't win. We can't have the hate machine in office any longer. We need the hope machine.
Here's more from NPR:
Earlier this month, subscribers to 70 newspapers in 14 states got a little something extra: A DVD that argues the same hard, militaristic line on terrorism that John McCain takes in his presidential campaign.
It's called Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West. The DVD was made in 2006, before this presidential contest began, and it doesn't even allude to electoral politics.
But, filled with dire warnings about Islamic terrorists, it hit doorsteps seven weeks before Election Day. And critics say it fuels the false whisper campaign that Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim.
Madaline Muir of Montgomery County, Pa., got the DVD in her Philadelphia Inquirer. She called it propaganda.
Know that these people are on a mission to smear Obama with this underground campaign, one that no one would admit to.
Wierzbicki, the movie promoter, also works for two political organizations. He's an organizer for Move America Forward, a political action committee that just produced an ad accusing Obama of playing politics with soldiers' lives.
He also is the PAC coordinator for the Our Country Deserves Better PAC. Its Web site says it has one objective: to defeat Obama.
Where is the funding coming from for this propaganda?
"Where is that money coming from? And what is the agenda of those behind this campaign? And who is behind this campaign ultimately?" Ibrahim Hooper, the council's spokesman, asked, regarding the DVD.
Those kinds of questions are often asked at the height of campaign season. But even if the election commission decides to investigate the Clarion Fund, the answers would likely be months away.
Read the whole story.
More on the Clarion Fund.