FUD is a persuasion, propaganda technique, within the acronym for Fear. Uncertainty. Doubt. Its wielders subject its targets to the tactics routinely in political speeches and commercials, as a selling point for products and positions.
The seller in no way relies on the superiority of seller's products and positions, but on the gullibility of the consumer. All the seller has to do is instill in you, the consumer, the voter, this "FUD" - fear, uncertainty and doubt, about the competition.
Fort Ticonderoga, NY. Lobbing FUD
You know the other guy's position has little merit if he or she has to lob FUD at you. Right? High fives. Now, duck.
Gene Amdahl knows first hand.
Amdahl left Big IBM in 1970, see chronology at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Amdahl, created his own competing product and tried to sell it.
What did IBM do? It did not respond by showing its products' own superiority, but instead spread a compost of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt about anyone straying from IBM's product widget, which was better known, over to Gene Amdahl's.
That Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt combination against the competition is the most potent addition to the basic Propaganda techniques list since Noah. For a start in the propaganda field, see Hello, Fodder - Propaganda Study.
Add to the propaganda techinques this FUD combination and see it in current political campaign use - at Hello, Fodder - Citizens, Participate in the FUD Patrol.
As campaigns proceed, as well as when you see commercials creeping creepily, keep your scorecard going.
Gene Amdahl: Do an Images search and he will be there. Read about his accomplishments at http://www.thocp.net/biographies/amdahl_gene.htm; and at http://encyclopedia.farlex.com/Gene+Amdahl. Wikipedia is a good starting point - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Amdahl.
Gene Amdahl - how come we never knew ye. We know your legacy, and your stalwart stand against the most insidious of corporate weapons against People - fear, uncertainty and doubt.
FUD. You, Gene, were the first. We are taking the same hits, since IBM spread the word that it works. You name an incumbent, or anyone seeking to Sell ideology or program, and find FUD over merit. Everybody in PR shouts it against the other guy.