Comparing September 11 and January 6
September 11, 2001 AND January 6, 2021 were the two days in my life where I remember crying in pain for my country.
We read and witnessed heartwarming 9/11 tributes all day yesterday but all I could think about was how universal those tributes were regardless of political party.
Democratic President Biden and past Republican President Bush were both at the ceremony in Shanksville, PA, honoring those who died on United Flight 23. Biden said of Bush’s speech—“[He] made a really good speech today, genuinely.”
Even Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson posted a picture of himself observing the wreckage of the twin towers and wrote a heartfelt tribute to America’s fallen first responders and the troops that went to Afghanistan to hunt Bin Laden and protect us from subsequent terrorist attacks.
Think about that. If President Biden told Republican Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson today that the sky was blue, Johnson would look at the blue sky and go on Fox News and call him a liar.
I said I cried in pain twice for our country in my lifetime—on 9/11 and 1/6. To me, January 6 burns hotter in my soul than September 11 because it happened more recently, and at the age of 44, I’m more aware of what was at stake in America. Of course we can’t compare tragedies—instead we put them both in a special place in our hearts so that we will "never forget."
Unfortunately, when we memorialize the insurrection that killed Americans and almost destroyed democracy in our country next January 6, 2021, you can bet few Republican politicians will show up, and they’ll continue to tell their base that nothing really happened that day.
What happened to us over the last twenty years, when most EVERY American believed the same story about September 11, but a large and very vocal minority deny that we almost lost our country on January 6?
Here’s what happened—psychological warfare against our citizens, right out of Putin’s playbook, and the end of the Fairness Doctrine that resulted in internet disinformation flowing like old-fashioneds at a Friday fish fry.
As most of you have already heard, the act of government repeatedly crossing the line of what is acceptable in society eventually wears us down psychologically so that we are too exhausted to fight back, and that’s when a dictator can swoop in by promising to make it all go away.
And by beating a constant drum of disinformation like the “Big Lie” that Biden’s victory was fraudulent, people start questioning their own minds, thinking “if SO MANY people believe that the election was rigged, maybe I’M WRONG and it actually was.”
This psychological warfare and intentional disinformation didn’t stop when Trump was removed from office. No, his acolytes in Wisconsin—Ron Johnson and Congressman Tom Tiffany stepped right in the void, but they’re not nearly as good at it.
In this video Johnson admits that Trump lost the election in Wisconsin to an undercover reporter that he thought was on his team. The video can’t get any more clear, but has Johnson called on Wisconsin’s legislative leader Robin Vos to put an end to the sham election investigation that will cost taxpayers over $600K? No.
So here’s what we SHOULD do to right this ship.
We need to resurrect the Fairness Doctrine that was killed in the late 80s so that we can regulate any company that claims to report the news on cable and the internet as well as broadcast television. If they purposefully publish stories that are easily proven to be false, they should be punished financially and/or put out of business.
If we did this alone, we could get back to a place where most Americans got the same set of facts, just like when we watched the Twin Towers go down, and universally grieve for our country every September 11.
Unfortunately, we don’t hear anyone talking about the Fairness Doctrine—maybe because there are many more immediate dangers such as our voting rights being stripped in red states around the country and women’s reproductive rights being squashed in Texas—psychological warfare, remember?
So, until we can pass laws to punish those pushing lies to the public, we have to go after the liars.
And that’s where we come in.
We’re taking responsibility for two of them: Ron Johnson and Tom Tiffany, because they will be on the ballot in Northern Wisconsin next year. Other folks have to take on the other liars, but we’ve got these two.
And calling out liars in Northern Wisconsin has a very strong but indirect relationship to saving America. Wisconsin is one of only nine swing states in the country that decides our presidential elections, and making deep red Northern Wisconsin a LITTLE more progressive will ensure that Wisconsin votes blue and saves our democracy.
If you agree with what we’re doing, we have a few requests.
First, if you like craft beer, we encourage you to buy ours. 5% of our profits go to the Minocqua Brewing Company Super PAC, which pay for our signs and progressive activism in Northern Wisconsin.
To find out where you can buy our beer, please go here. If you don’t like beer or live far away and can’t get it, please consider buying some of our merchandise here.
Next, if you’d like your money to go further, please consider donating directly to the Super PAC here.
Together, we can do our part to bring truth back to our country, one beer at a time.
Kirk Bangstad, Owner of the Minocqua Brewing Company and Super PAC.