Saturday, August 27, 2005

Propaganda






Here is Jon Stewart on Talking Points.

And here is an excellent propagandist.

And this is the discussion of propaganda from Wikipedia

"The aim of propaganda is to influence people's opinions actively, rather than to merely communicate the facts about something. For example, propaganda might be used to garner either support or disapproval of a certain position, rather than to simply present the position.

What separates propaganda from "normal" communication is in the subtle, often insidious, ways that the message attempts to shape opinion. For example, propaganda is often presented in a way that attempts to deliberately evoke a strong emotion, especially by suggesting non-logical (or non-intuitive) relationships between concepts.

An appeal to one's emotions is, perhaps, more obvious a propaganda method than utilized by some other less overt and perhaps even more insidious forms. For instance, propaganda may be transmitted implicitly. Propaganda can be transmitted as the presupposition or presuppositions within an ostensibly fair and balanced debate or argument. This can be done to great effect in conjunction with a broadcast news format.

Here is an example of a hypothetical situation in which the opposing view points are supposedly represented: the hawk says, "we must stay the course", and the dove says, "The war is a disaster and a failure", to which the hawk responds, "In war things seldom go smoothly and we must not let setbacks affect our determination", the dove retorts, "setbacks are setbacks, but, failures are failures."

As one can see, the actual validity of the war is not discussed and is never in contention. Brief, succinct, and reductive arguments like these are often referred to as sound bites. In giving the appearance of representing opposing positions and view points, a debate (of what is really aspects of the actual, genuine, argument worthy issue) in which the debaters argue from the same basic assumptions, implicitly inculcates the presupposition(s) as sacrosanct truth, thus, establishing it as an accepted fact about the given issue.

The method of propaganda is essential to the word's meaning as well. A message does not have to be untrue to qualify as propaganda. In fact, the message in modern propaganda is often not blatantly untrue. But even if the message conveys only "true" information, it will generally contain partisan bias and fail to present a complete and balanced consideration of the issue.

Another common characteristic of propaganda is volume (in the sense of a large amount).

For example, a propagandist may seek to influence opinion by attempting to get a message heard in as many places as possible, and as often as possible. The intention of this approach is to reinforce an idea through repetition, and/or exclude or "drown out" any alternative ideas.

It was formerly common for political organisations to refer to their own material as propaganda."

We all use our minds and words to shape.

Some of us are better at it than others.

Some of us do it to it gain power.

Some of us do it to retain power.

Some of us do it to make money.

Some of us do it to make sense of it all.

As the POTUS says,

You've got to catapult the propaganda


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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Wikipedia piece is quite good. MS

11:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

great poster.

4:33 PM  
Blogger head lem said...

I was out of town when you posted this. Mind shaping or programming is precisely the problem of our heading-for-the-cliff herd of humans. We are not who we think we are. We are not "rational" creatures. The evidence is all around us that we are not rational. Yet we deny it. It is only when we understand the structures and functions of the interrelated components within the human brain that we have a chance to intellectually "evolve" beyond our current denialist's state.

9:36 AM  
Blogger OZ said...

well said lem.

10:31 AM  

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