(Note to subscribers: This post in its early stages accidentally went out under the title “K.” My finger hit the wrong button.)
JC started a post yesterday with a quote from Obama about how we don’t have time for propaganda, and that there would likely be misinformation. The translation from the lying liar Obama to English is, of course, that “we are going to start hitting you with lies, and will continue to do so until we are satisfied that the lies have worked.”
But for the lies to work, ground must be prepared. Seeds that fall on untended ground do not grow. The tending has been going on for decades, but in recent months a subtle seeding has been going on, setting the stage for a play. There is no longer a “Russia” or a Russian Federation. There is only a “Putin.”
If you suspect propaganda, it does not work. The moment you sniff it out it’s as useful as a politician’s promise. So Obama is alerting you to the possibility of Russian propaganda, setting your sensors on high orange alert. He is also disguising the American angle. That is calculated, part of American propaganda.
Alex Carey, the late Australian academic, spent his career studying American propaganda. He concluded that the greatest achievement of American propaganda was to convince Americans that there is no American propaganda. That is how effective it is. Americans do not even know it exists.
Here’s a couple of key aspects of American propaganda, which are deeply embedded, memory resident, and highly effective:
- Enemies must have a face on which we can focus our hatred.
- The bad guys live over there. The good guys live here, or “we’re rational, they’re not.”
For months now, since before the hugely successful Russian Olympics, American news and entertainment has been demonizing Russian President Vladimir Putin. Russia has thwarted some American imperial objectives, most notably the attempt to break up Syria and replace its government by means of terrorist agents. The false-flag gas attack last year was supposed to trigger an American attack, but they could not pull it off due to the presence of the Russians. This pissed off American state planners in their plush Wall Street and Langley offices, so that a decision was made that the Cold War needed to be rebooted. “Russia,” a vast and powerful country, had to become “Putin.”
Hate Putin, hate the Russians. It worked for forty years. Why not?
This same game has played out so many times I cannot count. Abdel Nasser in the 1950’s is probably too ancient to remember, but when Egypt got in the way of American ambitions, he became the “Hitler of the Nile.” Muammar Gaddafi’s demonization was so effective that his cold-blooded and brutal murder was seen as a good thing. Saddam Hussein, Manual Noriega, Slobodan Milošević, Ayatollah Khomeini, Bashar Assad, Osama bin Laden … these are just names, but then became household words, the object of extreme hatred, the focus of our angst. Once their evil creds are established in the public mind, American violence is justified. They put them on the cover of Time Magazine and the front page of Huffington Post with horns on the head and bombs in the background. They become the face of evil.
None of this happens without planning. American public opinion is under firm control of American state planners. If I tell that to an American however, I catch hell. “Why, goddamn you, I think through everything, analyze news from a number of sources (Fox or NPR, but I repeat myself) and make up my mind for myself! How dare you accuse me of falling for propaganda!!!
But you do, twice before breakfast. If you automatically reflexively thought that Putin shot down a plane, there is no nice way to say it, tool.
But none of this would work if Americans were not such a fertile seed bed for propaganda, and this has been going on all our lives. I broke out of it and am free, and am on the outside looking in. I see how it works. That makes me an outlier, and my attitudes and opinions therefore seem quirky to those who are still embedded in the game.
The most obvious attitude in Americans is as follows: We are rational actors. They are not. Once I see this attitude emerge I know I am up against the brick wall and that there is no reasoning that will change a person’s mind. So I don’t even try. I just say what I think. It’s pointless, so I just have some fun. This is why I don’t care what you think. If you breathe our air and drink our water, you don’t think so good.
This leads to a third critical function of our propaganda system. people tell me I am not good at changing minds, that I need to be patient and reason with people. That’s nonsense.
- Those who are not reasoned in cannot be reasoned out.
There’s no point in arguing about the plane they shot down. The ground was seeded, the plot hatched before our eyes. Putin is evil, Putin did it. I saw this yesterday in two partisans at 4&20, Craig and James Conner. Craig was disingenuous, afraid to speak his mind, so I tried to pin him down. I asked him of he thought the Russians, excuse me, Putin, shot down the airliner. He hemmed and hawed, but finally said
Putin, your hero, is in for a hell of a difficult slog. The deeper he digs and apologists like you cheer, it will be less than successful.
Game, set, match. He said “Putin” in the same way he said “Osama” on the afternoon of 9/11. The seed was planted and sprouted and is now a hardy plant.
No one — not the Ukrainian government, not the pro-Russian rebels, not the Russians — had anything to gain by blowing a civilian airliner out of the sky.
Notice what’s missing? It has not occurred to him that the US, the Brits, NATO might have something to gain by blowing up a plane. There’s a reason why those thought crimes never cross his mind: it is because we are rational, they are not.
By the way, if you think that Americans are lying liars and can do evil things, there’s a fourth peg of our propaganda system that effectively seals you off so that you don’t contaminate others:
- You’ve got a conspiracy theory there, buddy.
I don’t mind that notion so much anymore, as I understand that it takes a lifetime of indoctrination to produce the non-thinking, reactionary and hate-filled patriot that automatically buys in to the latest set of government lies. It takes a village where all you get is American news, education and entertainment. This produces the apparatchiks we call citizens. It ain’t changing anytime soon.
So to summarize the possible explanations for the downing of a civilian airliner and cold-blooded murder of 300 people, it goes like this:
- Putin did it! (Goddamned right he did. He is one evil mutherfucker.) Or …
- Americans did it. (That’s some kind of conspiracy theory you got there, buddy.)
PS: Last I checked, Israel is still bombing innocent Palestinians, and it is still the Palestinians’ fault. Bill Maher told me this last night. Maher is one funny comedian, but knows what it takes to keep his job.