from Masterminds of the right by

9 July 2018

The tactics, and at times, the sheer genius, of the conservative lobby came most sharply into focus during the 1986 divorce referendum. Here was an issue that which was not as clear-cut as abortion. … the tactics used were those of the marketing guru. Points of psychological vulnerability were isolated and played upon. The fear of desertion for economically dependent women, the fear of being ‘replaced’ by a younger rival, the fear of forced sale of a family farm or property, the fear of loss of social welfare or pension rights. It was a campaign that unashamedly used fear as its primary weapon and it succeeded. The message did not have to be truthful for it to work. The message in fact, even if only half believed by those who heard it, could still work.

O’Reilly, Emily. (1992) Masterminds of the right

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