By Eric Arthur Blair for the Saker Blog
First it must be said that Russia and China are terrible at propaganda. Just hopeless. They are so lousy at propaganda, they have basically given up. In today’s propaganda war with the West, they have failed miserably and lost.
However History is written by the Victors, and all objective evidence today indicates that Eurasia (more inclusively, the BRICS+) will inevitably prevail in today’s new Cold War (short of global nuclear war – in which case everybody dies).
In the bad old days, official declarations from the lofty heights of the Soviet leadership or Communist Party of China delivered on downwards to their citizens were blunt, high handed and frequently contradicted reality. They had no idea how to carefully craft persuasive messages. The cognitive dissonance afflicting ordinary people in the Soviet Bloc was what George Orwell parodied in 1984, using a fictional pseudo-British setting. Such blatant lies, such clumsy attempts at mind control from officialdom, were an affront to sanity and reason in the real world and simply did not wash. The Soviet and Chinese citizens, while superficially pretending to believe such hamfisted propaganda to appease the officials, completely distrusted the official narratives and sought to discover the truth by other means. They developed healthy scepticism and they forced change within their own societies.
Circumstances have spun around 180 degrees over the past few decades for several reasons:
- Official reports of their rising living standards are now entirely consistent with their personal lived experience, leading to increased trust by Russian and Chinese citizens in their governments and their media. High living standards are what the majority of people are mainly interested in (long healthy lifespan, job security, affordable healthcare, housing, food, education etc). There will always be a tiny minority of malcontents and criminal fanatics eg Wahhabi indoctrinated terrorists, who will try to spoil a good thing, but that is the nature of human perversity.
- Rising educational standards have generated an even more skeptical public. Many Netizens know how to access blocked websites and most know how to use VPNs. They fact-check the claims made by official sources and forensically analyse topics of importance in prolific discussion groups. Anybody familiar with China today will know that Weibo and WeChat are vigorous, rambunctious, wide-ranging forums.
- Official sources in Russia and China are aware of the above. They know that their most important currency is trust, and to maintain the trust of their audiences they are forced to report (mostly) truthful information these days, because they cannot get away with any big lies. Their lies will be found out and they will be humiliated and discredited.
- Russia today meets the definition of a robust democracy. Anybody who claims that peaceful dissent is violently suppressed in Russia does not know what they are talking about. Of course, it is illegal to say things like “there are no NeoNazis killing ethnic Russians in Ukraine” because that is a treasonous lie, just as Holocaust denial is illegal in Israel and Germany. Free speech does not extend to telling lies. Twenty seven million Russians were killed by Nazis in WW2, which is a bit of a sore point. Nazis murdering Russian speakers today on the borderland (which is what Ukraine means) is an intolerable situation. By February 2022, after 8 years of bombardment and 14,000 deaths, it became untenable for Putin to stand by any longer and passively watch the UkroNazis (funded and trained by the US/NATO) commit genocide against Russian speakers in Donbass. The Russian people would have tarred and feathered Putin if he did nothing. What do you call a system of governance where the majority of people determine what the leader must do? Here is a little secret. Do you really want to know what Xi Jin Ping truly fears? He fears the Chinese people. He is afraid of the little old grandmother in the rural village who cannot get clean water. He knows that if he fails to deliver, he will lose legitimacy. Last time I checked, one definition of democracy was a system of governance that delivers what the majority of people need and want. Smart people focus on beneficial democratic outcomes, the lead-up process being almost irrelevant. To paraphrase Mao, it does not matter if the cat is black or white, so long as it catches mice. Zelensky was elected by democratic process using false promises. Is he delivering what the majority of Ukrainians want? Or is he delivering what the US and minority criminal UkroNazis want? All political parties except the far right extremists have been banned. That’s Ukrainian “representative democracy” for you today. Stupid people focus on the purported democratic process (often a deceptive sham), completely ignoring whether the outcome is actually democratic. I know that the readers of the Saker blog are far from stupid (apart from the trolls). I know you can see through shams.
What about the USA? Fifty years ago the USA arguably had the highest standard of living in the world, hence US citizens largely trusted their government (ignoring the fact that US wealth, particularly following their deindustrialisation, was largely acquired through foreign plunder, exploitation and parasitic freeloading via the Petrodollar). As a nation founded on genocide, slavery, bigotry and racism, with US citizens taught disdain for foreigners from childhood, average Americans would automatically believe any negative news about “the other” (Russia, China, Iran etc) whether it was true or not. No need to fact-check. Even Americans “of colour” subscribed to such xenophobia and jingoistic nationalism, they were victims of Stockholm syndrome. Many brainwashed descendants of slaves identified with their kidnappers. The scientific study and practical application of propaganda actually originated in the USA. It has now been elevated to such a high art by the Deep State that they have been able to persuade Americans that 2+2 = 5, which the stupid sheeple will swear with tears in their eyes, with one hand waving the tar bangled spanner and the other waving the Ukrainian flag (yellow on top, of course), while screaming their daily two minutes of hate for Putin. Down with Russian cats! Down with Tchaikovsky! Down with the letter Z! Up with *elensky!
What is the real situation in the USA today?
- Official reports of a “healthy” economy are NOT consistent with their personal lived experience. The majority are suffering terrible economic insecurity and deprivation, while the 1% are enjoying skyrocketing wealth, not because of increased productivity but because of increased Kleptocracy. Living standards in the US are plummeting with healthy lifespans declining, incomes flat or declining, poor job security, unaffordable healthcare, housing, education – and worsening inflation. However inflation is far worse in Europe, America’s advance sacrificial goat, caused largely by high energy and commodity prices which are the direct consequence of their sanctions on Russia.
- Educational standards have deteriorated, with Americans more ignorant than ever of the geography and history of the outside world and stuck with their backward medieval prejudices. They lack critical thinking. They therefore remain receptive to bigoted messages from their mainstream media, blaming all their woes on foreigners and coloured immigrants. No need to fact-check, it must be true because it feels true.
- The mainstream media, even NPR, therefore know they can continue to vomit out toxic inflammatory bile (“Putin is a madman who must be assassinated“) which the stupid sheeple will continue to passively swallow wholesale. Long gone are the days when the New York Times and Washington Post were bastions of courageous investigative journalism. Ditto in the UK for The Guardian, which is not worth the paper it is (no longer) printed on. At least in pre-Internet days the physical paper could be used as fish wrapping. They have all been prostituted by the powers-that-be. They have expunged all proper journalists, replacing them with supine prostitute stenographers. Let us not even talk about Rabid Maddog’s Faux News.
- The USA today meets the definition of an authoritarian dictatorship. Authoritarian corporations are dictating government decisions – which was Mussolini’s definition of Fascism – the term Il Duce himself invented. Peaceful protests eg BLM are violently suppressed by militarised police forces. Indiscriminate shootings by trigger happy police for the crimes of “driving while Black” or “breathing while Black” remain out of control. The USA today has nothing to offer its citizens except more propaganda and more Elementary School mass shootings. Thoughts and prayers? Fuck your prayers, the facts prove that the American “leadership” do not give a shit about American children, it is the profits of the Arms Industry that are their top priority. America is FUBAR.
I have obtained permission to reproduce the striking “sheeple” diagram below (so long as I provide attribution). I find it a useful visual explanation for the prevailing AngloEuroZionist mindset. More detailed background regarding the diagram can be found in the article from which it originated, downloadable from here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwwY2c16I4w or here (direct link to document): https://www.dropbox.com/s/nio185d72vkqkpc/ChannellingTrout_full_compressed.pdf?dl=0
(see page 187, appendix three after the novella). That article mentioned Edward Bernays and various psychological studies on persuasion and conformity.
While bemoaning the supine prostitution of the Western Mainstream Media, it is also important to pay tribute to the courageous independent journalists, writers, analysts, whistle-blowers and documentarians who are trying to uphold and preserve some semblance of integrity, decency and sanity in the West. I will no doubt forget to mention some very important names (for which I apologise in advance) but here are just a few:
Julian Assange, John Pilger, Chris Hedges, Oliver Stone, Pepe Escobar, George Galloway, Robert Scheer, Daniel Ellsberg, Eva Bartlett, Vanessa Beeley, Brian Becker, John Kiriakou, Scott Ritter, Mnar Adley, Lee Camp, Ben Norton, Max Blumenthal, Aaron Mate, Alexander Rubenstein, Patrice Greanville, Rania Khalek, Peter Dale Scott, Aaron Good, Eric Zuesse, Gerald Horne, Garland Nixon, Whitney Webb, Abby Martin, Mike Prysner, the venerable Noam Chomsky, Vijay Prashad, Caitlin Johnstone, Danny Haiphong and of course the Saker.
What do they have in common apart from speaking Truth and advocating Peace? They have been smeared as “Russian/Chinese agents” and/or sources of “disinformation” and/or they have suffered cyber attacks and/or have been censored from mainstream platforms by the corporate and state powers. Julian Assange is in prison, being slowly murdered.
The AngloEuroZionist Empire claim to uphold the principle of Free Speech as sacrosanct. Orwellian much? Such sanctimonious hypocrisy is truly sick-making. Simple rule of thumb: for everything they claim, it is best to believe the very opposite.
The USA claims to be a freedom loving democracy. Reality: they are a violently oppressive fascist oligarchy who deny innocent children freedom from the terror of being gunned down in school.
The USA claims Russia is an authoritarian dictatorship. Reality: Russia is a de-facto democracy (albeit with some troublesome oligarchs) that tolerates responsible free speech.
The USA claims Taiwan is being oppressed by China. The USA is prodding the Taiwanese to declare independence for the sake of their “freedom”. Reality: If Washington-stooge Taiwanese “leaders” declare “independence”, they will be condemning the Taiwanese people to ongoing vassalage by the US empire, which is happy to fight China to the last Taiwanese. The USA sees the Taiwanese as disposable cannon fodder, just as Ukrainians are disposable cannon fodder. Is it just possible that the Taiwanese may be a little bit smarter than the Germans who are now committing economic suicide, or the Ukrainians who are now committing actual suicide on behalf of the psychopathic US neocons? Consider the alternative: if Taiwan merges with China, the resultant political and economic union, the tearing down of barriers and the ramping up of cooperative ventures, will inevitably make the Taiwanese richer. No question. The lucrative tourism opportunities alone are mind boggling. Furthermore if a major disaster strikes like a typhoon or earthquake, the immense capacity of mainland China will be rapidly mobilised to bring in massive supplies, food and power generators to aid the Taiwanese people. Mainland China will help rebuild Taiwanese hospitals, roads, railways and schools for free. Why? Because China sees the Taiwanese people as Chinese people.
That is the nefarious diabolical moustache-twirling Chinese plot for their “reconquest” of Taiwan: to make the Taiwanese even richer than they already are and to deliver prompt massive humanitarian aid, free of charge, should any disaster strike. Pure evil.
Erratum: quote attributed to Mao was actually by Deng
I would to see a link to a violent Police put down of a “peaceful” BLM protest.
First, I don’t believe most BLM protests were peaceful. I’m not talking about the 100% white people parade to the local police station or town hall with children and libtards carrying slogans. I’m talking about real BLM organized protests which were usually riots.
Second, I don’t believe there was a forceful police response to any of them until they had gone on for several days, OR they were in danger of marching into a neighborhood of the rich liberals who run the government.
Quit trying to rewrite history.
Ignoring centuries of slavery and social and economic persecution just exposes your bigotry.
I attended peaceful BLM protests in rich white communities that went on without event. The dozens of undercover police were not acting as agent provocateurs, as they did at many of these events and others like OCCUPY and Jan. 6.
– George Soros’s Foundation Pours $220 Million Into Racial Equality Push
Mr. Soros’s group will invest $150 million in grants for Black-led racial justice groups, and another $70 million toward local grants for criminal justice reform and civic engagement opportunities.
Soros expresses Blacks are especially easy to manipulate.
Soros started his career as SS employed. Today his is in the leadership of the Vatican, i.e. a Jesuit.
All that seems prove Soros spent a lot of money. It certainly does not prove that the US does not suffer from systematic racism.
El principal problema es porqué en insistir en que los “otros” te gusten a ti si o si, si su aspecto no es como el de los “mios” y su cultura tampoco es como la de los “mios” pues sólo queda el mejor recurso: la mezcla de razas; Como crees que duró el Imperio Español en América 3 siglos, pues creando una raza nueva que no era ni africana ni indigena ni europea sino una nueva pero con un espíritu 100% Hispano.
The main problem is why you insist that the “others” like you if you like them, if their appearance is not like “mine” and their culture is not like “mine” then the best resource is the mixture of races; How do you think the Spanish Empire lasted 3 centuries in America, creating a new race that was neither African nor indigenous or European but a new one but with a 100% Hispanic spirit.
The fact that black people vastly out number white people in US jails, and the fact that, similarly, police shootings feature black people much more than whites say otherwise.
I’m Native American (and also descended from founders). Pretty sure my ancestors were, and still are, treated FAR worse than the African imported populations were. Take a quick look at how many of each demographic are still alive today. I’m also quite aware of the impact on current residents by having an large wave of immigration into your land.
And thank you for agreeing with my point that the rich white neighborhood protests were the ones shown most of the time on the local news. Because they were peaceful and made everyone feel nice that they were showing how virtuous they were with their Instagram posts and BLM logos, until it was time to switch to Ukrainian flags.
The downtown protests? Not so much.
Ah yes, The Unified Theory of Wokeism. You are the perfect vassal for “presentism”…someone who attends BLM rallies.
Based on a limited, but not insignificant amount of experience, my take on BLM is pure american deep state color revolution tactics against the american federalist system of States having essentially sovereign rights within reason.
The western governments have colluded UNdemocratically to impose a foul, anti-human; anti-God hell on earth.
Some very decent, intelligent and well meaning people become hypnotized by the false, entirely engineered ‘narratives’ which the western satanic elite employ to make true useful idiots out of otherwise perfectly wonderful humans.
This is no longer a warning. Escalation from here is going to be the real deal.
God have mercy.
30% of the population of the Roman Empire were white slaves; then they became serfs of the gleba during the middle ages, they were also white, the two million slaves, who were captured on the European Mediterranean coasts throughout the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries, were white; The first slaves who arrived in what is now the USA were Catholic, and very white, Irish (more than 20,000) captured by the English Protestants. Black Cloud your rancorous arguments have little travel, they are childish and opportunistic. Do we whites go to Rome or Istanbul or London to ask for justice for things that were done to us centuries ago? Leave the opium of Liberation Theology
Explico: the reason you have not heard of violent police actions against BLM protests is because that news was censored by the mainstream media
But BLM protests are just the tip of the iceberg. Proper documentation of US police violent repression of civilian protests will require an exhaustive essay in itself, due to the long history and countless incidences. It is more difficult to censor news of the police murder of middle class white protestors as in the Kent State U shootings
He didn’t just “spend a lot of money.”
His Open Society Foundation essentially created B.L.M., the same way that Obama created I.S.I.S.
BLM was a completely astroturfed operation. In the beginning, transgenderism was a critical part of it, which the Open Society Foundation felt the public was not yet ready for.
The intelligence services are SUPPORTING BLM. The C.I.A. spreads wokeness, not white supremacy. Look at the recent Wikileaks about U.S. intelligence in Estonia. The C.I.A. had outlined an entire campaign to promote mass immigration into Estonia, to force that country solidly into the Western orbit. Wokeness is the new imperial ideology. Not traditional Christianity.
Your summary of the BLM astroturfing is perfect. The idea that the United States, today, is a cesspool of White supremacy and merciless oppression of POCs is itself part of the astroturfing, and very interestingly follows quite closely the tone of the lousy propaganda of the USSR that the author decries at the start of the article. I read Soviet propaganda about the US during the Cold War, and cringeworthy it was. As an example, I remember an article in one of the Soviet press organs decrying the press gangs in the 1980s that ruthlessly dragooned helpless US blacks into the Marine Corps. I never knew that I was living in 18th century England during the Seven Years’ War! How had I missed all those press gangs? Well, luckily for me, I had proper Marxist-Leninist dialectical analysis before my very eyes to set me straight on the matter.
One wonders therefore if Mr. Blair feels interiorly a profound disgust that the lousy propaganda was the result of the communists trying to cover up their failure to create the superior system that their ideology averred was destined to happen, or if he is merely embarrassed that the Soviets were unable to lie more convincingly.
As for Russia and the SMO, I agree with The Saker: The Russian General Staff is not beholden to any of us to explain any of its operations. Commendably, the Russians stick to facts in their communiques, which actually allows for a comprehensible analysis of operations. If sheeple in the West don’t get it, what does it matter? Those people have already spiritually declared war on Russia, so nothing Russia says is going to affect their worthless opinions or their increasingly frantic two-minute daily hate sessions.
NB: My denunciation of leftist propaganda regarding the “systemic racism” canard should not be construed as an endorsement of the U.S. and its society, because the U.S. does indeed have serious and almost certainly fatal flaws. It’s just that “systemic racism” is not one of them.
I could not find an actual example of BLM protests in that article. Going all the way back to Kent State weakens your argument, imo.
In Portland, which is Ground Zero for BLM, the mayor supported the rioters, even after multiple innocents had been killed. The police essentially stood down through most of it, while businesses and buildings are torched.
The U.S. media censors Trump and his supporters, not anything or anyone “woke.”
There are people from the Jan 6th riot, who have not seen the inside of a courtroom yet. They are even put into solitary. The BLM protestors went through a revolving door whenever they were arrested, bailed out completely by George Soros Open Society Foundation.
Agree, China and Russia are weak in the information warfare. They aren’t good at framing the narratives. In many media discussions felt they could do better. Also, they don’t seem to want to communicate the reality and facts. Why?
Let’s look at “Multilateralism.” Chinese, Russian,… participants don’t question the host or opponents to name a western leader promoting multilateralism. This will expose the West’s evil intent and authoritarianism to dominate and maintain hegemony in the unipolar order.
The lackeys of the Private Financial Empire are using our favorite words such as “suzerainty”, “Empire”,… in the reverse order. Paraphrasing Fiona Hill from her recent foreign affairs article, “Russia wants Ukraine to be its suzerainty.” Russians and Chinese need to call out the media to name a western democracy that isn’t a suzerainty. Also, they don’t speak the reality on the Russian and Chinese media, and state that the US$ is private money, the ploy behind democracies, failures to follow the constitution, dollarization bubble through the Euro$ market, cryptos,… Why do China and Russia don’t want to reveal reality?
Imagine people in China boycotting Starbucks, Apple, Nike,… the day after Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan. We didn’t see much of China’s unity and national strength in the response to Pelosi’s trip. In the EU, one nation can sell its goods to other nations. Why can’t China’s companies sell their chips to Huawei? This is a better measure of nation’s unity and strength. Are Russian and Chinese citizens united? China and Russia will need to show strong internal unity to win their external battles.
Here are good expose of the Western MSM propaganda:
CGTN – The 7 deadly sins of Western Mainstream media
This is a war of propaganda – John Pilger
“First it must be said that Russia and China are terrible at propaganda. Just hopeless. They are so lousy at propaganda, they have basically given up. In today’s propaganda war with the West, they have failed miserably and lost.”
It may be that there was an element of the above, in the rejection by Russia at least – I dont feel I can answer for China, but it may be so there too – but I doubt it is all.
We are all constrained and directed to a greater degree than many know, or will admit, by the systems which are part of the Paradigm of the culture we grow up in, and are bathed in. But those systems also were formed by us, so they take the shape of the way our minds work, just as we choose our Dominant Paradigm.
The Russians and Chinese are, in many ways, very subtle people. After almost one year spent in Russia, I decided that if I had to try to sum up the Russian people in one word, it would be that one – subtle.
The kind of propaganda put out by the collective West is anything but subtle. Read the ghastly UK Daily Mail, for the daily dose of their propaganda, the stunningly stupid lies, the taking of the reality, and just switching “Ukraine” with “Russia”. Even their poorly intellectually gifted audience are starting to wake up to it.
I just dont see the modern, highly educated and balanced Ruling teams of Russia thinking that way. And you cannot do Propaganda in a subtle way, except by clever film making perhaps. But even there, the perception manipulation shows through. These days of internet, and the availability of access to truth also mitigate against it.
It’s also a fact – you should never, ever, try to fight a battle using your opponents methods and rules. They structure those things, because they are what suit their mind set. It “works for them”. Thus, they are not going to work for you. If you try to copy them, you will lose, you will be beaten, because you are trying to step out of your own character.
I suspect that maybe Russian leaders are well aware of all these facts. I think that they have decided not to even try, but do what works for them – and indeed it is working. Be seen as honest; be seen as always keeping your word; be seen as living by good values, of love of Motherland and people, be seen as being quietly certain of your values and the right of your cause.
It may take time, but look how the world has been trending to swing towards Russia away from the propaganda driven collective West. Look how many now want to be associated with Russia and the organisations Russia is part of; how many dont vote against Russia any more.
And this will last – most of us get over propaganda sooner rather than later – apart from the dyed in the wool haters of course. But seeing worthwhile values lasts for as long as the values do – seeing through propaganda happens relatively fast. And there is an old saying “you can only lose your good reputation once – once gone, it’s gone for good”
The author has made an error on the following quotation this quote must be corrected to:
To paraphrase Deng Xio Ping, “It does not matter if the cat is black or white, so long as it catches mice.”
This is a famous reply from Deng to Mao, that tried to portray Deng as a traitor to the communist ideology.
At the end, Deng prevailed and China, today, is what it is, because of him, not because of Mao. Mao, was wrong and was leading China to a cul-de-sac.
North Korea and China have basically same economic philosophy. But North Korea has not Most Favorable Nation-status, and no investments from Apple. If China had been subjected to same level of sanctions as North Korea China would not have been a flowerishing economy of course.
Thank you for your correction, my mistake
Above was my reply to Felix
Russia and China may have lost the propaganda war but the reality is that I tend to believe what they report, whereas I tend to disbelieve everything the West reports. So, from my point of view, the West has lost.
What I see, is that the old USSR and the old west switched. The west has become like the USSR was, and modern Russia and China are becoming like the west used to be.
With all due respect, 50 years ago the United States public did not monolithically trust its government. On Sept. 15, 1972, the Watergate burglars were indicted in federal court. The presidential campaign that year became the subject of a classic series of Rolling Stone articles. We were coming to grips with racial justice and we had been in Vietnam for seven years. The country was conflicted, not monolithic.
Yes, wide swaths of what Nixon called the Silent Majority went along with what their government said. There are sheep in every country. You do the non-sheep a disservice by denying their existence.
I do not deny the existence of non-sheep which is why I included the diagram showing a small proportion of “sapients”. Fifty years ago despite transient problems like the 1973 oil crisis, economic prospects on the whole for average americans were nevertheless far better, with affordable housing, education, healthcare, secure well paying jobs etc. Also robust infrastructure unlike the crumble of today. Yes, there were civil rights protests, big in the news but spearhead by just a small minority – the sapients. The majority then, as now, were and are sheep.
Propaganda wars always seem to need a lot of fall guys, and we have a lot of fall guys.
Street guys, court guys, economic guys, Queen gals, I mean the London bridges are not quite falling yet, but the sweet foundations are quickly decaying.
some books to read about propaganda and manipulation of public opinion:
Propaganda by Edward L. Bernays
Manipulating Public Opinion by Edward L. Bernays
Crystallizing Public Opinion by Edward L. Bernays
The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind by Gustave Le Bon
Propaganda by Jacques Ellul
The Rape of the Mind, Psychology of Totalitarianism.
thanks, did not hear of this book before, there is entry on wiki. interesting.
my personal opinion is that this is only side show, brainwashing starts in government compulsory schools.
“The most erroneous assumption is to the effect that the aim of public education is to fill the young of the species with knowledge and awaken their intelligence, and so make them fit to discharge the duties of citizenship in an enlightened and independent manner. Nothing could be further from the truth. The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all; it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardized citizenry, to put down dissent and originality. That is its aim in the United States, whatever the pretensions of politicians, pedagogues and other such mountebanks, and that is its aim everywhere else.”
Nothing like propaganda.
The point is that even if Russia and China had the best propaganda machine going its totally irrelevant ,in the West, as it would be banned from being seen or heard. It would be pointless even trying. They do not even publish Putins speeches because they do not want the truth to be told.
There used to be a North Korean documentary on US Propaganda freely available on Youtube, back in the good old days.
Enjoyable read, Mr Blair. I hope you wouldn’t mind me using your patent “Rabid Maddog Faux News”. That’s pure gold!
Propaganda is the product of the ruling elite. Sheep pay attention to it. Intelligents don’t care about the elites or the sheep. They just want to be left alone. There will never be utopian government on this earth. Why would any intelligent person want to rule over others? Governing is drudgery, a useless waste of what precious little time we have.
One thing in your illustration is wrong: You can not be immun to propaganda, due to how the human Brain works. You have always counter any Propaganda with facts and or even dissect the Propaganda by the mechanisms they work to invalidate them for your own perception
Kerwas: the illustration was not mine, it was borrowed with attribution link, because I find it useful.
An immune system does not stonewall pathogens, it detects then first, then works out a response to them. You yourself wrote “You have always (to) counter any Propaganda with facts and or even dissect the Propaganda by the mechanisms they work to invalidate them for your own perception”
That sounds to me mighty like a mental immune system countering propaganda
“Free speech does not extend to telling lies.”
In fact it does, or at least it should in principle. The issue is who determines what is a “lie”? The current government? Big tech? Social media? Whatever group you grant this power to will surely end up abusing it to silence their opponents and to further their own social/political/monetary ends.
The main point of free speech is to allow open discourse so that the truth can be gleaned from disparate viewpoints, some of which will inevitably be false. The way to counter a lie is via promotion of truth and exposing of the lie, not via censorship and repression.
We need to return to teaching our children critical thinking, vigorous debate and historical study as the best methods for providing the mental fortitude to navigate the world; then the desire for a nanny state, censorship and cancel culture to “protect” them will disappear.
(I am not speaking here of defamation causing actual harm, which is already well covered by existing law)
A father: you are wrong. Full explanation as to why will take a long essay, but briefly: there are many scenarios in which we have determined truth beyond any reasonable doubt by scientific and observational and analytical methods, such as the fact the earth is round. We should not give lying flat earthers any oxygen, debate with them is a waste of time. So called free speech champions like yourself may argue we should give flat earthers equal airtime for the sake of “democracy” – what rubbish. I think it is appropriate that denial of the shelling murders of civilians in donbass by ukronazis is made illegal, because it has been proven to be a historical fact beyond any shadow of doubt, the 14,000 dead figure comes from UN investigators.
In scenarios where the truth is unclear, by all means lets have an independent open investigation eg the Bucha massacre where in fact Russia was insisting on independent investigation by the UN security council which the UK blocked at the time. I wonder why.
The US SCOTUS actually had a ruling on that – lies are protected speech.
The harm this does is that one has to first suffer the lie. The second harm is that one is now forced to defend oneself. Some people just don’t have the energy, or the ability to do this well enough, are not articulate enough. Plus one usually doesn’t have to counter just one person but the whole bandwagon of trolls that jump on board to increase the lie, and its spread. Defending a lie before the law with the help of existing defamation laws, especially in the US, is not possible for everyone either. Too many people lack the funds to engage the outrageously expensive, obscure and unreliable US legal system. Especially someone from countries with lower incomes and less expensive legal systems. Ie the average Russian with an average monthly income converted to $900 has no ability to counter a lie in the US legal system because of a lack of funds. The average Russian can also not counter a lie effectively online because the internet outlets will most likely not allow the counter argument, which means that the lie is perpetuated.
So in reality, your hypothesis does not work. And history has shown us just how costly lies can be. Which is why we have moral rules that cover lies. Which are being mostly ignored these days.
US SCOTUS is an ass. The S stands for supreme, so they are a supreme ass. One of the major reasons the US is in such a crapulent state is because of the legal protection of lies, which then stifles and overwhelms truth
On a flight from Munich to NY I was seated next to a Russian man and eventually he shared he was with the FSB. He told me he was going to study advanced propaganda techniques used in the US on its citizens. “What propaganda”? I asked. “Yes, exactly” was his response.
I was just reading an interesting article about primitive tribal instinct in relation to fascism, or as Craig Murray succincly puts it, mob rule, you know, the sort we see in WW2 documentaries about Germany.
Symbolism of fascism
How this resolves itself depends on which groups we’re talking about. The biologist, author and podcaster Bret Weinstein says that as Western society breaks down, it has ****reverted to a tribal form****, of the in- versus the out-group, and an overt fascist movement has emerged in the U.S. in particular.
Weinstein has some pithy insights into the “diabolical brilliance” of Biden’s Red Speech: there is nothing “Left” about the Democrats other than their rhetoric; even their platform is a “loss leader” to advance the interests of their paymasters.
We saw evidence this month that the Biden administration has regular meetings to decide who their partners in big tech should censor, in clear violation of the First Amendment. The ****FBI is busting into people’s homes, surrounding their cars at drive-thrus, and seizing their phones**** because they are active Republicans.
Weinstein says fascism does not “inherently live on the right.” Warming to his theme, he adds that “the sine qua non of fascism is the hybrid between corporate power and governmental power. ****Fascism is also about theft****. Fascists ****target someone and justify the liquidation of their wealth and well-being to generate phony growth for those who are in the fascist cabal.”****
He argues that Western liberalism is a powerful mechanism for generating well-being, insight and fairness but it is “a fragile mechanism that ****when disturbed defaults to a more robust, primitive state****. Fascism is tapping into an ancient mode that precedes formalized government… in which ****tribe or lineage compete against lineage****, in which they ****energize their own lineage by subjugating another.”****
“The Democrats are now openly playing with the symbolism of fascism. V for Vendetta is a movie adored on the left. The message to the left is: ****this is your fascism and the people we’re going after are your enemies. We will suspend everyone’s rights but don’t worry, because you are going to come out on top. You’ve got nothing to fear if you’re on our side,”**** says Weinstein.
“First it must be said that Russia and China are terrible at propaganda. Just hopeless.”
Perhaps this is a deliberate strategy, and an incredibly clever one!
While many of us have woken up to the western media and govt propaganda, many still have not. For those who are waking up right at this point in time – what will they see and what will make them wake up? If Russia and China were to be “good” at propaganda like so many people want them to be, those who are just awakening now will see what they think are two devilishly clever sides competing for their minds, and often westerners will default to what they know and trust which is the evil mind control of the west that they grew up with. However, if they see the blatant propaganda from one side (the west) and “terrible” propaganda from the other side(s) (ie: none) then they are more likely to see who the real liars are and hence see the truth.
I have come to see/learn that the way Russia handles most things is like pure mastery compared to the west, like the well worn saying of playing chess vs bingo. I believe that what appears to be “terrible” on the information/propaganda front is simply part of the same master strategy to DEFEND themselves against the collective west and hence defeat them. IMO most of us here realize that Russia does not do elaborate propaganda (ie: lying) like the west, they simply present mostly snippets of the truth when the ideal time arises.
Well said. Russia presents mostly defendable arguments. At least defendable at the time they are made. Looking back, people will be able to see reliability of info provided, no hype, facts.
However, that does not help at a time when emotive arguments stir up irrationality and the consequences that may bring with it. And when facts are pushed aside and narratives are created.
Also not true that the winner writes history. Every country writes its own history. The US still believes It won wwii and writes history accordingly.
Don’t forget the late Stephen Cohen!
What do you call a country where nearly one in 10 adults have medical debts and a broken bone can boot you into bankruptcy? A country where a city of more than 160,000 residents recently had no safe drinking water for weeks? A country where life expectancy has dropped for the second year in a row and poor people sell their blood plasma in order to make ends meet? A country where the maternal mortality rate of black women in the capital is nearly twice as high as for women in Syria?
You call it one of the richest countries in the world!
The UN recently demoted the US to 41st, down from 32nd, in a global ranking based on its sustainable development goals. This index is focused on the quality of life of ordinary people rather than the creation of wealth. And, on this measure, the US comes just behind Cuba and just above Bulgaria. The US is “becoming a ‘developing country’,” one MIT economist said last week, based on this index. An example: in Chicago, a lack of funding at the city, state, and federal levels means that toxically high levels of lead in the water supply will not be dealt with.
On an A to F grading scale, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the U.S.’ infrastructure condition a dreadful D+ and described investment in it’s improvement as “woefully inadequate.”
Here’s a breakdown of ASCE’s rating:
Inland Waterways: D
Drinking Water: D+
Hazardous Waste Management: D+
Thank you for your comment / citation which gave meat to the bones of my assertions. I would like to make it clear that I am NOT against Americans in general.
America is not a monolith, it consists of:
1. AmeriCANs who are a tiny minority striving for truth and a better world, some of whom I named above (yes, Assange and Pilger are Aussie and Prashad is Indian, but most of the names are American). I support the AmeriCANs with every fiber of my being, they are true patriots, unlike the MAGA knuckleheads.
2. AmeriCANTs who are the vast majority of hapless, clueless citizens who lack agency and are dreadfully suffering under a rapacious Kleptocracy and there are
3. AmeriCUNTs, the tiny minority of psychopathic Neocons and their ilk. They are like the ant brain fungus Ophiocordyceps or rat brain parasite Toxoplasma that cause their hosts to engage in suicidal behavior to benefit said parasite.
Thanks, Eric. Your analysis is wide-ranging and spot on. You could give more credit to Edward Bernays as “the father of propaganda”, but his work was most far-reaching in advertising which serves consumerism just as propaganda serves the state.
Alternately, I would like to know a little more about State propaganda in Stalinist Soviet times compared with pre-collapse Soviet times and the same for Maoist China versus the ‘open’ China.
Eric, I agree with much of your post.
But, the rot in America has been going on for a lot longer than 50 years. Duranty’s NYT reporting on the 1932-1933 Holomodor is proof positive of that. As was the ‘yellow journalism’ around the sinking of the Maine by Spain and of the Lusitania by Germany, both false, but both of which precipitated U.S. entry into war.
“…Of course, it is illegal to say things like…because that is a treasonous lie, just as Holocaust denial is illegal in Israel and Germany…” (because it is a lie)
I invite you to read the free PDFs, easily found, by Butz, ‘The Hoax of the 20th Century,’ Rudolf, ‘The Rudolf Report,’ and Leuchter’s, ‘The Leuchter Report.’ The three were, respectively, a Northwestern University engineering professor, a Ph.D.-level chemist, and the sole designer and builder of U.S. execution chambers. All are excellent, credible examinations of evidence and logic.
It is shocking how many things we accept as true today are nothing but terrible lies.
Me, the only sense I can make of the ever-more blatant and unbelievable statements coming from U.S. and European authorities is that there is a purposeful effort underway to destroy the remaining credibility of evil authority figures in a heroic effort to awaken the sheeple.
Keep up the fine work, Eric!
Listening to biden’s speech at the UN, I wondered: Did this idiot suddenly experience amnesia right before he took to the podium, or is he so shamelessly dishonest and hypocritical that he just does not care anymore? Everything he said was 180 degrees from facts and reality. The reason why US society is failing, in every way, is because it has stopped being honest and truthful. A handful of lies may give you some temporary benefits, but to become hooked on them inevitably leads to all sorts of contradictions and crises when the lies stack up so high that they can no longer be managed.
Western leadership is truly myopic and willfully ignorant. They are caricatures, as was stated by certain Russian officials. As for the EU bunch, you’d figure they wold know better due to their histories, but they have become dumbed down as their bosses across the ocean, maybe even more so.
Pawel: Biden is actually quite multi-talented. As per the ever entertaining Pepe Escobar: Biden functions both a senile teleprompter reader as well as a crash test dummy
I saw the writing on the wall, and left the US after 31 years some years ago. And as challenging as having to start over in a different land was, it was worth the effort.
The author noted: “While bemoaning the supine prostitution of the Western Mainstream Media, it is also important to pay tribute to the courageous independent journalists, writers, analysts, whistle-blowers and documentarians…….
Pepe Escobar, Pilger and Assange are wonderful journalists. But like the others you mention, save for Assange, none of them really understand how US Capitalism functions. Mind you, it is that system, that is causing massive conflicts around the world.
We suggest reading/hearing the world economist: Dr. Michael Hudson as he talks about how the US’ IMF, World Bank, spews out loans around the world. Easy enough to do in Latin America, Africa, parts of Indonesia and elsewhere. First the US bribes the wealthy in the countries, ensuring those people will make massive profits using the US/EU/UK financial system. Then it demands huge reductions in labor costs. Lastly, the US System then goes in and rapes those lands of lithium and many other products the US doesn’t have. The money made off of that circulates back to the US FED/Treasury as “free money.” That Free Money then goes into the pockets of the ultra rich in the US/UK/EU Central Banks.
That’s just one example of what US $$ has been doing for decades.
See Dr. Michael Hudson’s articles/interviews: http://www.michael-hudson.com