Since 911, anyone not still blissfully asleep knows that certain media outlets can be considered propaganda. Web savvy folk refer to these outlets as the Mainstream Media, “MSM”…you know the ones. If you’re like I was several years ago and are still politically polarized, you’ll probably think of FOX or NPR, depending on your political bent.
For a couple years after 911 I still believed the whole al Qaeda and bin Laden story, complete with box cutters, planes and cell phone calls. It was after spending too much time on the Internet that I lost any doubt the Bush administration was behind 911; so I volunteered to register voters and pound pavement for the Democratic ticket. I was still a believer, but I didn’t think I was at the time…I thought I was an activist seeking justice.
I didn’t care for Kerry, but I hadn’t cared for many of the Democrats I’d blindly voted for over the previous thirty years, so that wasn’t unusual, and at the time I knew we’d win; how could we lose? Bush was a disaster. However after Kerry’s capitulation to Bush in the face of yet more alleged election fraud, I couldn’t deny that these bastards were on the same side…suddenly my cognitive dissonance faded and I began to see the roles these two hucksters were playing.
They knew the score…this was war; us against them; where they may have been more subtle before, this was different…this was blatant, in your face, “I dare you to do something about it” kind of different. This is the French Revolution in reverse…still…rich against poor, the same soul-sucking battle we’ve been waging and losing since time immemorial. It was as if pre 911 was a “cold” class war waged by proxy through politics, poverty, media and covert operations, but post 911 became a free-fire zone class war.
These guys were the front men for a class of con artists who have been using and refining perception management and behavior control for countless generations, all for the specific purpose of keeping the system in place, and keeping their chosen few in charge. 911 changed everything, isn’t that what they told us? The world’s most powerful people were actively covering up the crime of the century, and they were doing so with the full cooperation of the world’s media. But was this really a change; how long has this been going on? Evidently since the beginning:
“Propaganda and Persuasion” by Dr. Garth S. Jowett,
The use of propaganda has been an integral part of human history and can be traced back to ancient Greece for its philosophical and theoretical origins. Used effectively by Alexander the Great, the Roman Empire, and the early Christians, propaganda became an integral part of the religious conflicts of the Reformation. The invention of the printing press was quickly adopted by Martin Luther in his fight against the Catholic Church and provided the ideal medium for the widespread use of propagandistic materials. Each new medium of communication was quickly adopted for use by propagandists, especially
during the American and French revolutions and later by Napoleon. By the end of the 19th century, improvements in the size and speed of the mass media had greatly increased the sophistication and effectiveness of propaganda.
There really is nothing new under the sun. I recall watching the moonwalks on TV as a child, glued to the TV beside my dad…I had posters of the moonwalks on my bedroom walls, I built models of the spacecraft, and I stayed up late to read books about the missions; I was a true fan. Now however, when I look at the images of the props used for the Lunar Modules, I marvel how they could have fooled us then, and how they still fool so many of us now.
NASA had become the new age priests using the latest media sleight of hand and flash powder to dazzle while they picked our pockets. I’m sure many folks reading this will scoff at my words. but think on this…TV became mainstream only in the 1950s, when more than half of American households had one, but by 1962, 90% of American households had a TV set, making it the preferred medium for any good propagandist. Seven years later, they were broadcasting LIVE from the moon. What do you think is more likely…technology had advanced to such a degree (but is now unaffordable and no longer repeatable), or the moon walks were simply propaganda using the best medium available? I say the only thing preventing a return trip to the moon is not the Van Allen belt, but Adobe Photoshop.
In the historical context then, propaganda IS history, therefore, history IS propaganda.
The use of propaganda as a means of controlling information flow, managing public opinion, or manipulating behavior is as old as recorded history. The concept of persuasion is an integral part of human nature, and the use of specific techniques to bring about large-scale shifts in ideas can be traced back to the ancient world. Many artifacts from prehistory and from earliest civilizations provide us with evidence that attempts were being made to use the equivalent of modern-day propaganda techniques to communicate the purported majesty and supernatural powers of rulers and priests. In a largely preliterate age, dazzling costumes, insignia, and monuments were deliberately created symbols designed to evoke a specific image of superiority and power that these early propagandists wished to convey to their audience.The history of propaganda is based on three interweaving elements: first, the increasing need, with the growth of civilization and the rise of nation states, to win what has been called “the battle for people’s minds”; second, the increasing sophistication of the means of communication available to deliver propagandistic messages; and third, the increasing understanding of the psychology of propaganda and the commensurate application of such behavioral findings. Throughout history, these three elements have been combined in various ways to enhance and encourage the use of propaganda as a means of altering attitudes and for the creation of new ideas or perspectives. Only in comparatively modern times, however, have scholars and scientists begun to understand and assess the role of such mass propaganda techniques as an aspect of the social process. The history of propaganda does not develop as a clear linear progression, but certain significant historical benchmarks are worth examining as illustrations of how propaganda has been used at different times. In each case, those wishing to control or manage others (the propagandists) have made maximum and intelligent use of the forms of communication (the media) available to them while also accurately gauging the psychological susceptibility of their audiences so that their messages could be tailored to ensure the best possible reception. The successful propagandist is able to discern the basic beliefs, needs, or fears of the audience and to play upon those.
Conmen using my fears against me …is nothing sacred? Furthermore, if they’ve been playing this same game for millennia, then what isn’t propaganda? Speaking of sacred, does the Bible fit the description of the word of god, or does it fit the word of the powers that were using the best propaganda media available to them? The answer should be obvious that everything should be suspect as propaganda; certainly all the “isms” are…Darwinism, Fascism, Zionism, communism, capitalism, etc. If it appeals to fear, greed or lust, it’s probably propaganda and therefore not healthy for human consumption.
Fear is of paramount importance to a propagandist.
“American propaganda had its birth, so far as I can tell, in the advertising industry. The pioneers of advertising—a truly loathsome bunch—learned early on that people would respond to purely emotional appeals. Abstract theory and logical argument do nothing to spur sales. However, appeals to sexiness, to pride of ownership, to fear of falling behind the neighbors are the stock in trade of advertising executives. A man walking down the street with beautiful women hanging on his arms is not a logical argument, but it sure sells after-shave. A woman in a business suit with a briefcase, strolling along with swaying hips, assuring us she can “bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, but never let you forget you’re a man” really sells the perfume.Let’s take a moment and analyze the particular emotions that this execrable ad appealed to. If you guessed fear, you win the prize. Women often have a fear of inadequacy, particularly in this confused age when they are expected to raise brilliant kids, run a successful business, and be unfailingly sexy, all the time. That silly goal—foisted upon us by feminists and popular culture—is impossible to reach. But maybe there’s hope if you buy the right perfume! Arguments from intimidation and appeals to fear are powerful propaganda tool
American advertising and propaganda has been refined over the years into a malevolent science, based on the assumption that most people react, not to ideas, but to naked emotion. When I worked at an ad agency many years ago, I learned that the successful agencies know how to appeal to emotions: the stronger and baser, the better. The seven deadly sins, ad agency wags often say, are the key to selling products. Fear, envy, greed, hatred, and lust: these are the basic tools for good propaganda and effective advertising. By far, the most powerful motivating emotion—the top, most-sought-after copy writers will tell you, in an unguarded moment—is fear, followed closely by greed.”
Whether its fear of rejection or fear of terrorism, if the advertisers can instill fear, they’re likely to sell something. Fear is a powerful emotion.
“Campaigns with purely emotional content performed about twice as well (31% vs. 16%) with only rational content, and those that were purely emotional did a little better (31% vs 26%) those that mixed emotional and rational content.”
Even without statistics, it doesn’t take a leap of faith to agree that propaganda is advertising, is propaganda, etc. and anyone watching an hour of TV can attest to what base emotions advertisers are targeting; fear, greed and lust top the bill. It should be no news to anyone that TV programs are there to fill space between advertisements; with TV shows and schedules named “programs” and “programming” respectively; the Pavlovian significance thereof hopefully not lost on the reader.
Throughout history propagandists have used fear to motivate and direct large groups of people. We who are alive today are only different from our predecessors by virtue of the fact that few in human history have ever been subjected to the levels of propaganda we have. The last hundred years have been a boon for propagandists, and I disagree with one of the a above authors who said he believes propaganda “had its birth from the advertising industry”; I believe it has more to do with the psychology industry, which was developed almost in parallel to modern “Public Relations”.
Advertising and propaganda are related to psychology, and ironically enough, the two men best known for their respective fields of PR and Psychology are related too. Sigmund Freud and Edward Bernays, uncle and double nephew, one the father of modern psychology, and the other the father of modern PR.; life’s funny that way. Freud was married to the sister of Bernays’ father, and Bernays mother was Freud’s sister, but Freud also messed around with Bernays’ aunt, making life even funnier that way.
So after a few thousand years of priests, shamans and kings all using their best media to propagandize and scare the daylights out of their people, mass media technology reached new heights with the development of radio and TV; and with Bernays in charge the propagandists made their craft into a weapon. In 1928 Bernays wrote the book on propaganda, named “Propaganda” of all things:
“ THE conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society.”
Bernays sold his ideas of propaganda, which is really unsubtle brainwashing, to the minority whose power was threatened by democracy. What a guy…he says it all here:
“To-day, however, a reaction has set in. The minority has discovered a powerful help in influencing majorities. It has been found possible so to mold the mind of the masses that they will throw their newly gained strength in the desired direction. In the present structure of society, this practice is inevitable. Whatever of social importance is done to-day, whether in politics, finance, manufacture, agriculture, charity, education, or other fields, must be done with the help of propaganda. Propaganda is the executive arm of the invisible government”
This was in 1928; 73 years before 911 and Bernays was writing with the experience of the American Propaganda used in the WWI…it was this propaganda machine, one that relied on imagery instead of rationality, which was so successful in swaying the masses to do the bidding of the ruling minority. It was this system that so impressed Hitler that the Nazis emulated it in the next world war. That’s right; the Nazis copied American propaganda because American propaganda is second to none.
“Hitler learned to admire American propaganda through a young American expatriate who described to him, in glowing detail, how Americans enjoyed the atmosphere at football games. This American expatriate, with the memorable name of Ernst “Putzi” Hanfstängl, told the Führer how Americans could be whipped up into a frenzy through blaring music, group cheers, and chants against the enemy.”
So this is our history; this is the history that brought us to the age of the Internet which in turn brings us the 911 truth movement which works overtime to prevent a real discussion about TV fakery. We’ve met them …they’re the ones who use fear and guilt rather than rational argument; propagandists have been controlling media since the beginning, so don’t fool yourself into thinking they don’t control the Internet.
These are the people who brought us atomic weapons and radioactive fallout in Japan, and these are the same folks who are now reporting Japan returning the favor. These are the people who sell us the politicians who sell us wars, and who then sell us the rebuilding after the wars. These are the same people who sell us bankers’ bailouts followed by bankruptcies, austerity, “quantative easing” unemployment, and homelessness.
If history is any teacher, 911 was and remains pure propaganda, a made for TV movie with real and fake victims which provided literal smokescreen-cover for a massive heist and insurance scam, to be paid for with your tax dollars; with the cherry on the cake being the war on terror. It was a propaganda coup like no other, better than the “War of the Worlds”, the lunar landings and the combined antics of con artists performed for thousands of years before it.
Folks whose brainchildren are MKULTRA, COINTELPRO, Operation Mockingbird and Hollywood shouldn’t be trusted…and why anyone continues to believe a word spoken or written by them is a testament that we deserve all the derogatory implications accompanying the pejorative “sheeple”.
The first step in gaining your freedom is to turn off the TeeVee; the next step is to use your newspapers to start your fires and wrap your fish.
Below are some links which will come in handy to folks interested in unraveling a century of lies:
CIA Disinformation in Action: Operation Mockingbird and the Washington Post http://www.whale.to/b/mock.html
History as a Weapon
Propaganda and How to Recognize It