The Republican Party has become “The Party” of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eight-Four

In Paul Krugman’s opinion column “The Viral Lies That Keep Killing Us,”  which appeared in the January 3, 2022 issue of the New York Times, Mr. Krugman reviewed incidents in which members of the Republican Party had used lies and obsfucation, arising from the Covid pandemic, so as to engender support for the Trumplican agenda.

Mr Krugman wrote: 

“Alert readers will have noticed that these Republican claims, in addition to being false, contradict one another in multiple ways.

A distressing parallel can be seen in George Orwell’s novel “Nineteen Eighty-Four” (published in 1949) in which Mr Orwell wrote: 

“The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. …DOUBLETHINK means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.”

Further on in his New York Times essay, Mr. Krugman wrote:

“…none of this (the Republican lies and obfuscation regarding public health measures) makes any sense … unless you realize that Republican vaccine obstructionism … is about the pursuit of power.”

Further on in his novel, Mr. Orwell wrote 

“Ultimately it is by means of DOUBLETHINK that the Party has been able—and may, for all we know, continue to be able for thousands of years—to arrest the course of history.” 

The Republican Party has become “The Party” and “Big Brother,” who was the personification of “The Party,” in George Orwell’s prescient dystopian novel. Given the second half of Mr. Orwell’s above sentence, barring a significant change in political fortunes, the future of democracy in America is beginning to look very dark.

Hayward Zwerling


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