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Propaganda, The News, What People Believe & Why

Propaganda Techniques American Mainstream uses to Brainwash Americans

 

by Debbie Menon

 

I believe perhaps the running of the two articles on the same theme below as natural companions might alert or illuminate the hard core believers of Mainstream Media propaganda and/or so-called official stories, to what is being done to them on a daily basis, and on why people believe what they do and how hard facts belying fundamental beliefs usually seem to reinforce them in the gullible and thoughtless.

Dr. Cynthia Boaz deals with a common source, FOX News, and their application and employment of standard propaganda and “spin” techniques which we see every day… but which I am not sure yet that the general public in America, has probably become so familiar with because of its prolific and constant use, that they hardly or seldom notice.

There is a monolith of falsehood out there, and FOX News is but one of its foundation blocks. They must be chipped away if we are to topple the entire lie.

Ronald Reagan’s “Welfare Queen” anecdote in the second piece is an incredible example, it just reinforces what some of us have always known and perchance the non-believers might be persuaded and benefit from knowing.

14 Propaganda Techniques Fox “News” Uses to Brainwash Americans[1]

by Dr. Cynthia Boaz, Truthout

There is nothing more sacred to the maintenance of democracy than a free press. Access to comprehensive, accurate and quality information is essential to the manifestation of Socratic citizenship – the society characterized by a civically engaged, well-informed and socially invested populace. Thus, to the degree that access to quality information is willfully or unintentionally obstructed, democracy itself is degraded.

It is ironic that in the era of 24-hour cable news networks and “reality” programming, the news-to-fluff ratio and overall veracity of information has declined precipitously. Take the fact Americans now spend on average about 50 hours a week using various forms of media, while at the same time cultural literacy levels hover just above the gutter. Not only does Mainstream Media now tolerate gross misrepresentations of fact and history by public figures (highlighted most recently by Sarah Palin’s ludicrous depiction of Paul Revere’s ride), but many media actually legitimize these displays. Pause for a moment and ask yourself what it means that the world’s largest, most profitable and most popular news channel passes off as fact every whim, impulse and outrageously incompetent analysis of its so-called reporters. How did we get here? Take the enormous amount of misinformation that is taken for truth by Fox audiences: the belief that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and that he was in on 9/11, the belief that climate change isn’t real and/or man-made, the belief that Barack Obama is Muslim and wasn’t born in the United States, the insistence that all Arabs are Muslim and all Muslims are terrorists, the inexplicable perceptions that immigrants are both too lazy to work and are about to steal your job. All of these claims are demonstrably false, yet Fox News viewers will maintain their veracity with incredible zeal. Why? Is it simply that we have lost our respect for knowledge?

My curiosity about this question compelled me to sit down and document the most oft-used methods by which willful ignorance has been turned into dogma by Fox News and other propagandists disguised as media. The techniques I identify here also help to explain the simultaneously powerful identification the Fox media audience has with the network, as well as their ardent, reflexive defenses of it.

The good news is that the more conscious you are of these techniques, the less likely they are to work on you. The bad news is that those reading this article are probably the least in need in of it.

1.Panic Mongering: This goes one step beyond simple fear mongering. With panic mongering, there is never a break from the fear. The idea is to terrify and terrorize the audience during every waking moment. From Muslims to swine flu to recession to homosexuals to immigrants to the rapture itself, the belief over at Fox seems to be that if your fight-or-flight reflexes aren’t activated, you aren’t alive. This of course raises the question: why terrorize your own audience? Because it is the fastest way to bypasses the rational brain. In other words, when people are afraid, they don’t think rationally. And when they can’t think rationally, they’ll believe anything.

2.Character Assasination/Ad Hominem: Fox does not like to waste time debating the idea. Instead, they prefer a quicker route to dispensing with their opponents: go after the person’s credibility, motives, intelligence, character, or, if necessary, sanity. No category of character assasination is off the table and no offense is beneath them. Fox and like-minded media figures also use ad hominem attacks not just against individuals, but entire categories of people in an effort to discredit the ideas of every person who is seen to fall into that category, e.g. “liberals,” “hippies,” “progressives” etc. This form of argument – if it can be called that – leaves no room for genuine debate over ideas, so by definition, it is undemocratic. Not to mention just plain crass.

3. Projection/Flipping: This one is frustrating for the viewer who is trying to actually follow the argument. It involves taking whatever underhanded tactic you’re using and then accusing your opponent of doing it to you first. We see this frequently in the immigration discussion, where anti-racists are accused of racism, or in the climate change debate, where those who argue for human causes of the phenomenon are accused of not having science or facts on their side. It’s often called upon when the media host finds themselves on the ropes in the debate.

4. Rewriting History: This is another way of saying that propagandists make the facts fit their worldview. The Downing Street Memos on the Iraq war were a classic example of this on a massive scale, but it happens daily and over smaller issues as well. A recent case in point is Palin’s mangling of the Paul Revere ride, which Fox reporters have bent over backward to validate. Why lie about the historical facts, even when they can be demonstrated to be false? Well, because dogmatic minds actually find it easier to reject reality than to update their viewpoints. They will literally rewrite history if it serves their interests. And they’ll often speak with such authority that the casual viewer will be tempted to question what they knew as fact.

5. Scapegoating/Othering: This works best when people feel insecure or scared. It’s technically a form of both fear mongering and diversion, but it is so pervasive that it deserves its own category. The simple idea is that if you can find a group to blame for social or economic problems, you can then go on to a) justify violence/dehumanization of them, and b) subvert responsibility for any harm that may befall them as a result.

6. Conflating Violence With Power and Opposition to Violence With Weakness. This is more of what I’d call a “meta-frame” (a deeply held belief) than a media technique, but it is manifested in the ways news is reported constantly. For example, terms like “show of strength” are often used to describe acts of repression, such as those by the Iranian regime against the protesters in the summer of 2009. There are several concerning consequences of this form of conflation. First, it has the potential to make people feel falsely emboldened by shows of force – it can turn wars into sporting events. Secondly, especially in the context of American politics, displays of violence – whether manifested in war or debates about the Second Amendment – are seen as noble and (in an especially surreal irony) moral. Violence become synonymous with power, patriotism and piety.

7. Bullying: This is a favorite technique of several Fox commentators. That it continues to be employed demonstrates that it seems to have some efficacy. Bullying and yelling works best on people who come to the conversation with a lack of confidence, either in themselves or their grasp of the subject being discussed. The bully exploits this lack of confidence by berating the guest into submission or compliance. Often, less self-possessed people will feel shame and anxiety when being berated and the quickest way to end the immediate discomfort is to cede authority to the bully. The bully is then able to interpret that as a “win.”

8. Confusion: As with the preceding technique, this one works best on an audience that is less confident and self-possessed. The idea is to deliberately confuse the argument, but insist that the logic is airtight and imply that anyone who disagrees is either too dumb or too fanatical to follow along. Less independent minds will interpret the confusion technique as a form of sophisticated thinking, thereby giving the user’s claims veracity in the viewer’s mind.

9. Populism: This is especially popular in election years. The speakers identifies themselves as one of “the people” and the target of their ire as an enemy of the people. The opponent is always “elitist” or a “bureaucrat” or a “government insider” or some other category that is not the people. The idea is to make the opponent harder to relate to and harder to empathize with. It often goes hand in hand with scapegoating. A common logical fallacy with populism bias when used by the right is that accused “elitists” are almost always liberals – a category of political actors who, by definition, advocate for non-elite groups.

10. Invoking the Christian God: This is similar to othering and populism. With morality politics, the idea is to declare yourself and your allies as patriots, Christians and “real Americans” (those are inseparable categories in this line of thinking) and anyone who challenges them as not. Basically, God loves Fox and Republicans and America. And hates taxes and anyone who doesn’t love those other three things. Because the speaker has been benedicted by God to speak on behalf of all Americans, any challenge is perceived as immoral. It’s a cheap and easy technique used by all totalitarian entities from states to cults.

11. Saturation: There are three components to effective saturation: being repetitive, being ubiquitous and being consistent. The message must be repeated cover and over, it must be everywhere and it must be shared across commentators: e.g. “Saddam has WMD.” Veracity and hard data have no relationship to the efficacy of saturation. There is a psychological effect of being exposed to the same message over and over, regardless of whether it’s true or if it even makes sense, e.g., “Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States.” If something is said enough times, by enough people, many will come to accept it as truth. Another example is Fox’s own slogan of “Fair and Balanced.”

12. Disparaging Education: There is an emerging and disturbing lack of reverence for education and intellectualism in many Mainstream Media discourses. In fact, in some circles (e.g. Fox), higher education is often disparaged as elitist. Having a university credential is perceived by these folks as not a sign of credibility, but of a lack of it. In fact, among some commentators, evidence of intellectual prowess is treated snidely and as anti-American. The disdain for education and other evidence of being trained in critical thinking are direct threats to a hive-mind mentality, which is why they are so viscerally demeaned.

13. Guilt by Association: This is a favorite of Glenn Beck and Andrew Breitbart, both of whom have used it to decimate the careers and lives of many good people. Here’s how it works: if your cousin’s college roommate’s uncle’s ex-wife attended a dinner party back in 1984 with Gorbachev’s niece’s ex-boyfriend’s sister, then you, by extension are a communist set on destroying America. Period.

14. Diversion: This is where, when on the ropes, the media commentator suddenly takes the debate in a weird but predictable direction to avoid accountability. This is the point in the discussion where most Fox anchors start comparing the opponent to Saul Alinsky or invoking ACORN or Media Matters, in a desperate attempt to win through guilt by association. Or they’ll talk about wanting to focus on “moving forward,” as though by analyzing the current state of things or God forbid, how we got to this state of things, you have no regard for the future. Any attempt to bring the discussion back to the issue at hand will likely be called deflection, an ironic use of the technique of projection/flipping.

In debating some of these tactics with colleagues and friends, I have also noticed that the Fox viewership seems to be marked by a sort of collective personality disorder whereby the viewer feels almost as though they’ve been let into a secret society. Something about their affiliation with the network makes them feel privileged and this affinity is likely what drives the viewers to defend the network so vehemently. They seem to identify with it at a core level, because it tells them they are special and privy to something the rest of us don’t have. It’s akin to the loyalty one feels by being let into a private club or a gang. That effect is also likely to make the propagands more powerful, because it goes mostly unquestioned.

In considering these tactics and their possible effects on American public discourse, it is important to note that historically, those who’ve genuinely accessed truth have never berated those who did not. You don’t get honored by history when you beat up your opponent: look at Martin Luther King Jr., Robert Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln. These men did not find the need to engage in othering, ad homeinum attacks, guilt by association or bullying. This is because when a person has accessed a truth, they are not threatened by the opposing views of others. This reality reveals the righteous indignation of people like Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity as a symptom of untruth. These individuals are hostile and angry precisely because they don’t feel confident in their own veracity. And in general, the more someone is losing their temper in a debate and the more intolerant they are of listening to others, the more you can be certain they do not know what they’re talking about.

One final observation. Fox audiences, birthers and Tea Partiers often defend their arguments by pointing to the fact that a lot of people share the same perceptions. This is a reasonable point to the extent that Murdoch’s News Corporation reaches a far larger audience than any other single media outlet. But, the fact that a lot of people believe something is not necessarily a sign that it’s true; it’s just a sign that it’s been effectively marketed.

As honest, fair and truly intellectual debate degrades before the eyes of the global media audience, the quality of American democracy degrades along with it.

Dr. Cynthia Boaz is assistant professor of political science at Sonoma State University, where her areas of expertise include quality of democracy, nonviolent struggle, civil resistance and political communication and media. She is also an affiliated scholar at the UNESCO Chair of Philosophy for Peace International Master in Peace, Conflict, and Development Studies at Universitat Jaume I in Castellon, Spain. Additionally, she is an analyst and consultant on nonviolent action, with special emphasis on the Iran and Burma cases. She is vice president of the Metta Center for Nonviolence and on the board of Project Censored and the Media Freedom Foundation. Dr. Boaz is also a contributing writer and adviser to Truthout.org and associate editor of Peace and Change Journal.

Why Do People Believe Stupid Stuff, Even When They’re Confronted With the Truth?

by David McRaney, AlterNet

The Misconception: When your beliefs are challenged with facts, you alter your opinions and incorporate the new information into your thinking.The Truth: When your deepest convictions are challenged by contradictory evidence, your beliefs get stronger.

Wired, The New York Times, Backyard Poultry Magazine – they all do it. Sometimes, they screw up and get the facts wrong. In ink or in electrons, a reputable news source takes the time to say “my bad.”

If you are in the news business and want to maintain your reputation for accuracy, you publish corrections. For most topics this works just fine, but what most news organizations don’t realize is a correction can further push readers away from the facts if the issue at hand is close to the heart. In fact, those pithy blurbs hidden on a deep page in every newspaper point to one of the most powerful forces shaping the way you think, feel and decide – a behavior keeping you from accepting the truth.

In 2006, Brendan Nyhan and Jason Reifler at The University of Michigan and Georgia State University created fake newspaper articles about polarizing political issues. The articles were written in a way which would confirm a widespread misconception about certain ideas in American politics. As soon as a person read a fake article, researchers then handed over a true article which corrected the first. For instance, one article suggested the United States found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The next said the U.S. never found them, which was the truth. Those opposed to the war or who had strong liberal leanings tended to disagree with the original article and accept the second. Those who supported the war and leaned more toward the conservative camp tended to agree with the first article and strongly disagree with the second. These reactions shouldn’t surprise you. What should give you pause though is how conservatives felt about the correction. After reading that there were no WMDs, they reported being even more certain than before there actually were WMDs and their original beliefs were correct.

They repeated the experiment with other wedge issues like stem cell research and tax reform, and once again, they found corrections tended to increase the strength of the participants’ misconceptions if those corrections contradicted their ideologies. People on opposing sides of the political spectrum read the same articles and then the same corrections, and when new evidence was interpreted as threatening to their beliefs, they doubled down. The corrections backfired.

Once something is added to your collection of beliefs, you protect it from harm. You do it instinctively and unconsciously when confronted with attitude-inconsistent information. Just as confirmation bias shields you when you actively seek information, the backfire effect defends you when the information seeks you, when it blindsides you. Coming or going, you stick to your beliefs instead of questioning them. When someone tries to correct you, tries to dilute your misconceptions, it backfires and strengthens them instead. Over time, the backfire effect helps make you less skeptical of those things which allow you to continue seeing your beliefs and attitudes as true and proper.

In 1976, when Ronald Reagan was running for president of the United States, he often told a story about a Chicago woman who was scamming the welfare system to earn her income.

Reagan said the woman had 80 names, 30 addresses and 12 Social Security cards which she used to get food stamps along with more than her share of money from Medicaid and other welfare entitlements. He said she drove a Cadillac, didn’t work and didn’t pay taxes. He talked about this woman, who he never named, in just about every small town he visited, and it tended to infuriate his audiences. The story solidified the term “Welfare Queen” in American political discourse and influenced not only the national conversation for the next 30 years, but public policy as well. It also wasn’t true.

Source: www.freerepublic.com

Sure, there have always been people who scam the government, but no one who fit Reagan’s description ever existed. The woman most historians believe Reagan’s anecdote was based on was a con artist with four aliases who moved from place to place wearing disguises, not some stay-at-home mom surrounded by mewling children.

Despite the debunking and the passage of time, the story is still alive. The imaginary lady who Scrooge McDives into a vault of foodstamps between naps while hardworking Americans struggle down the street still appears every day on the Internet. The memetic staying power of the narrative is impressive. Some version of it continues to turn up every week in stories and blog posts about entitlements even though the truth is a click away.

Psychologists call stories like these narrative scripts, stories that tell you what you want to hear, stories which confirm your beliefs and give you permission to continue feeling as you already do. If believing in welfare queens protects your ideology, you accept it and move on. You might find Reagan’s anecdote repugnant or risible, but you’ve accepted without question a similar anecdote about pharmaceutical companies blocking research, or unwarranted police searches, or the health benefits of chocolate. You’ve watched a documentary about the evils of…something you disliked, and you probably loved it. For every Michael Moore documentary passed around as the truth there is an anti-Michael Moore counter documentary with its own proponents trying to convince you their version of the truth is the better choice.

A great example of selective skepticism is the website literallyunbelievable.org. They collect Facebook comments of people who believe articles from the satire newspaper The Onion are real. Articles about Oprah offering a select few the chance to be buried with her in an ornate tomb, or the construction of a multi-billion dollar abortion supercenter, or NASCAR awarding money to drivers who make homophobic remarks are all commented on with the same sort of “yeah, that figures” outrage. As the psychologist Thomas Gilovich said, “”When examining evidence relevant to a given belief, people are inclined to see what they expect to see, and conclude what they expect to conclude…for desired conclusions, we ask ourselves, ‘Can I believe this?,’ but for unpalatable conclusions we ask, ‘Must I believe this?’”

This is why hardcore doubters who believe Barack Obama was not born in the United States will never be satisfied with any amount of evidence put forth suggesting otherwise. When the Obama administration released his long-form birth certificate in April of 2011, the reaction from birthers was as the backfire effect predicts. They scrutinized the timing, the appearance, the format – they gathered together online and mocked it. They became even more certain of their beliefs than before. The same has been and will forever be true for any conspiracy theory or fringe belief. Contradictory evidence strengthens the position of the believer. It is seen as part of the conspiracy, and missing evidence is dismissed as part of the coverup.

This helps explain how strange, ancient and kooky beliefs resist science, reason and reportage. It goes deeper though, because you don’t see yourself as a kook. You don’t think thunder is a deity going for a 7-10 split. You don’t need special underwear to shield your libido from the gaze of the moon. Your beliefs are rational, logical and fact-based, right?

Well…consider a topic like spanking. Is it right or wrong? Is it harmless or harmful? Is it lazy parenting or tough love? Science has an answer, but let’s get to that later. For now, savor your emotional reaction to the issue and realize you are willing to be swayed, willing to be edified on a great many things, but you keep a special set of topics separate.

Source: www.xkcd.com

The last time you got into, or sat on the sidelines of, an argument online with someone who thought they knew all there was to know about health care reform, gun control, gay marriage, climate change, sex education, the drug war, Joss Whedon or whether or not 0.9999 repeated to infinity was equal to one – how did it go?

Did you teach the other party a valuable lesson? Did they thank you for edifying them on the intricacies of the issue after cursing their heretofore ignorance, doffing their virtual hat as they parted from the keyboard a better person?

No, probably not. Most online battles follow a similar pattern, each side launching attacks and pulling evidence from deep inside the web to back up their positions until, out of frustration, one party resorts to an all-out ad hominem nuclear strike. If you are lucky, the comment thread will get derailed in time for you to keep your dignity, or a neighboring commenter will help initiate a text-based dogpile on your opponent.

What should be evident from the studies on the backfire effect is you can never win an argument online. When you start to pull out facts and figures, hyperlinks and quotes, you are actually making the opponent feel as though they are even more sure of their position than before you started the debate. As they match your fervor, the same thing happens in your skull. The backfire effect pushes both of you deeper into your original beliefs.

Have you ever noticed the peculiar tendency you have to let praise pass through you, but feel crushed by criticism? A thousand positive remarks can slip by unnoticed, but one “you suck” can linger in your head for days. One hypothesis as to why this and the backfire effect happens is that you spend much more time considering information you disagree with than you do information you accept. Information which lines up with what you already believe passes through the mind like a vapor, but when you come across something which threatens your beliefs, something which conflicts with your preconceived notions of how the world works, you seize up and take notice. Some psychologists speculate there is an evolutionary explanation. Your ancestors paid more attention and spent more time thinking about negative stimuli than positive because bad things required a response. Those who failed to address negative stimuli failed to keep breathing.

In 1992, Peter Ditto and David Lopez conducted a study in which subjects dipped little strips of paper into cups filled with saliva. The paper wasn’t special, but the psychologists told half the subjects the strips would turn green if he or she had a terrible pancreatic disorder and told the other half it would turn green if they were free and clear. For both groups, they said the reaction would take about 20 seconds. The people who were told the strip would turn green if they were safe tended to wait much longer to see the results, far past the time they were told it would take. When it didn’t change colors, 52 percent retested themselves. The other group, the ones for whom a green strip would be very bad news, tended to wait the 20 seconds and move on. Only 18 percent retested.

When you read a negative comment, when someone shits on what you love, when your beliefs are challenged, you pore over the data, picking it apart, searching for weakness. The cognitive dissonance locks up the gears of your mind until you deal with it. In the process you form more neural connections, build new memories and put out effort – once you finally move on, your original convictions are stronger than ever.

When our bathroom scale delivers bad news, we hop off and then on again, just to make sure we didn’t misread the display or put too much pressure on one foot. When our scale delivers good news, we smile and head for the shower. By uncritically accepting evidence when it pleases us, and insisting on more when it doesn’t, we subtly tip the scales in our favor.

- Psychologist Dan Gilbert in The New York Times

The backfire effect is constantly shaping your beliefs and memory, keeping you consistently leaning one way or the other through a process psychologists call biased assimilation. Decades of research into a variety of cognitive biases shows you tend to see the world through thick, horn-rimmed glasses forged of belief and smudged with attitudes and ideologies. When scientists had people watch Bob Dole debate Bill Clinton in 1996, they found supporters before the debate tended to believe their preferred candidate won. In 2000, when psychologists studied Clinton lovers and haters throughout the Lewinsky scandal, they found Clinton lovers tended to see Lewinsky as an untrustworthy homewrecker and found it difficult to believe Clinton lied under oath. The haters, of course, felt quite the opposite. Flash forward to 2011, and you have Fox News and MSNBC battling for cable journalism territory, both promising a viewpoint which will never challenge the beliefs of a certain portion of the audience. Biased assimilation guaranteed.

Biased assimilation doesn’t only happen in the presence of current events. Michael Hulsizer of Webster University, Geoffrey Munro at Towson, Angela Fagerlin at the University of Michigan, and Stuart Taylor at Kent State conducted a study in 2004 in which they asked liberals and conservatives to opine on the 1970 shootings at Kent State where National Guard soldiers fired on Vietnam War demonstrators killing four and injuring nine.

As with any historical event, the details of what happened at Kent State began to blur within hours. In the years since, books and articles and documentaries and songs have plotted a dense map of causes and motivations, conclusions and suppositions with points of interest in every quadrant. In the weeks immediately after the shooting, psychologists surveyed the students at Kent State who witnessed the event and found that 6 percent of the liberals and 45 percent of the conservatives thought the National Guard was provoked. Twenty-five years later, they asked current students what they thought. In 1995, 62 percent of liberals said the soldiers committed murder, but only 37 percent of conservatives agreed. Five years later, they asked the students again and found conservatives were still more likely to believe the protesters overran the National Guard while liberals were more likely to see the soldiers as the aggressors. What is astonishing, is they found the beliefs were stronger the more the participants said they knew about the event. The bias for the National Guard or the protesters was stronger the more knowledgeable the subject. The people who only had a basic understanding experienced a weak backfire effect when considering the evidence. The backfire effect pushed those who had put more thought into the matter farther from the gray areas.

Geoffrey Munro at the University of California and Peter Ditto at Kent State University concocted a series of fake scientific studies in 1997. One set of studies said homosexuality was probably a mental illness. The other set suggested homosexuality was normal and natural. They then separated subjects into two groups; one group said they believed homosexuality was a mental illness and one did not. Each group then read the fake studies full of pretend facts and figures suggesting their worldview was wrong. On either side of the issue, after reading studies which did not support their beliefs, most people didn’t report an epiphany, a realization they’ve been wrong all these years. Instead, they said the issue was something science couldn’t understand. When asked about other topics later on, like spanking or astrology, these same people said they no longer trusted research to determine the truth. Rather than shed their belief and face facts, they rejected science altogether.

The human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion draws all things else to support and agree with it. And though there be a greater number and weight of instances to be found on the other side, yet these it either neglects and despises, or else-by some distinction sets aside and rejects, in order that by this great and pernicious predetermination the authority of its former conclusion may remain inviolate

- Francis Bacon

Science and fiction once imagined the future in which you now live. Books and films and graphic novels of yore featured cyberpunks surfing data streams and personal communicators joining a chorus of beeps and tones all around you. Short stories and late-night pocket-protected gabfests portended a time when the combined knowledge and artistic output of your entire species would be instantly available at your command, and billions of human lives would be connected and visible to all who wished to be seen.

So, here you are, in the future surrounded by computers which can deliver to you just about every fact humans know, the instructions for any task, the steps to any skill, the explanation for every single thing your species has figured out so far. This once imaginary place is now your daily life.

So, if the future we were promised is now here, why isn’t it the ultimate triumph of science and reason? Why don’t you live in a social and political technotopia, an empirical nirvana, an Asgard of analytical thought minus the jumpsuits and neon headbands where the truth is known to all?

Source: Irrational Studios/Looking Glass Studios

Among the many biases and delusions in between you and your microprocessor-rich, skinny-jeaned Arcadia is a great big psychological beast called the backfire effect. It’s always been there, meddling with the way you and your ancestors understood the world, but the Internet unchained its potential, elevated its expression, and you’ve been none the wiser for years.

As social media and advertising progresses, confirmation bias and the backfire effect will become more and more difficult to overcome. You will have more opportunities to pick and choose the kind of information which gets into your head along with the kinds of outlets you trust to give you that information. In addition, advertisers will continue to adapt, not only generating ads based on what they know about you, but creating advertising strategies on the fly based on what has and has not worked on you so far. The media of the future may be delivered based not only on your preferences, but on how you vote, where you grew up, your mood, the time of day or year – every element of you which can be quantified. In a world where everything comes to you on demand, your beliefs may never be challenged.

Three thousand spoilers per second rippled away from Twitter in the hours before Barack Obama walked up to his presidential lectern and told the world Osama bin Laden was dead.

Novelty Facebook pages, get-rich-quick websites and millions of emails, texts and instant messages related to the event preceded the official announcement on May 1, 2011. Stories went up, comments poured in, search engines burned white hot. Between 7:30 and 8:30 p.m. on the first day, Google searches for bin Laden saw a 1 million percent increase from the number the day before. Youtube videos of Toby Keith and Lee Greenwood started trending. Unprepared news sites sputtered and strained to deliver up page after page of updates to a ravenous public.

It was a dazzling display of how much the world of information exchange changed in the years since September of 2001 except in one predictable and probably immutable way. Within minutes of learning about Seal Team Six, the headshot tweeted around the world and the swift burial at sea, conspiracy theories began to bounce against the walls of our infinitely voluminous echo chamber. Days later, when the world learned they would be denied photographic proof, the conspiracy theories grew legs, left the ocean and evolved into self-sustaining undebunkable life forms.

As information technology progresses, the behaviors you are most likely to engage in when it comes to belief, dogma, politics and ideology seem to remain fixed. In a world blossoming with new knowledge, burgeoning with scientific insights into every element of the human experience, like most people, you still pick and choose what to accept even when it comes out of a lab and is based on 100 years of research.

So, how about spanking? After reading all of this, do you think you are ready to know what science has to say about the issue? Here’s the skinny – psychologists are still studying the matter, but the current thinking says spanking generates compliance in children under seven if done infrequently, in private and using only the hands. Now, here’s a slight correction: other methods of behavior modification like positive reinforcement, token economies, time out and so on are also quite effective and don’t require any violence.

Reading those words, you probably had a strong emotional response. Now that you know the truth, have your opinions changed?

Source: www.alternet.org

This story is cross-posted from You Are Not So Smart.

Check out a copy of the book “You Are Not So Smart.”



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  1. Mumbai attacks – Indian Governments has stated it does not know who is behind attacks BUT Fox News says that the Indian Government has pointed the fingers at two specific groups who are associated with Pakistan. Obviously Fox News is printing the Israeli version of events.

    At Least 17 Reportedly Dead After Explosions Rock Mumbai Markets

    Indian officials say they believe the responsibility of Wednesday’s attack rests with the Indian Mujahideen, a group that works closely with Lashkar-e-Taiba.

    Lashkar-e-Taiba is the group suspected to be behind the 2008 attack.

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/07/14/at-least-17-reportedly-dead-after-explosions-rock-mumbai-markets/#ixzz1S3OEwqLp

  2. When the BBC announced the breaking news about the attack on Mumbai it made the comment that last time there was an attack in Mumbai Pakistan was to blame.

    They sowed the seed as soon as the attack happened. Obviously the attack was either done by the US or Israel, no intelligent person would think otherwise.

    Thankfully both India and Pakistan know the game that is being played and they will not fall for it.

  3. Fox board of directors

    Joel Klein
    Executive Vice President
    CEO, Education Division
    News Corporation

    Andrew S.B. Knight
    Chairman
    J. Rothschild Capital Management Limited

  4. theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

    John Walker Lindh,
    timing is everything,
    clueless from calfornia
    wow,

    John’s lawyers later obtained from the American government an unclassified cable sent from the US embassy in Kunduz on 20 November 2001, to Colin Powell and the joint chiefs of staff. The cable was labelled “priority”. It bore the subject line: “Kunduz representatives appeal for a bombing halt during surrender negotiations.” It said that, according to local authorities in Kunduz, Taliban soldiers trapped in Kunduz “wanted to surrender to someone who would not kill them”. This was described as a “sticking point” in the surrender negotiations. The Taliban, according to the cable, had “proposed surrendering to the US or the UN”. The cable confirmed that the American authorities had informed their counterparts in Kunduz that “neither was a realistic option and suggested that they seek the [Red Cross's] involvement if they had not done so already”.

    • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

      interesting contrast to how the 911/IDF Sayanim were treated & rewarded & many are now in dhs/tsa.
      John Walker Lindh was just clueless & smoking opium and was enlisted or tripped up into fighting against a Russian backed faction thousands of miles from where his parents should have never actually helped finance him getting there!
      all that international intrigue “get out of jail/prison free card ” stuff does not cover
      Singular Citizenships

  5. Strewth John – the article was long enough – imagine if all the rest were included we’d be here till the middle of next week and never get through the comments which really is the best part – let the article provoke and then let the provoked get commenting….with provocational material….for example, I think he who calleth himself “theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?” likes to rattle on but his rendition on Nutty Yahoo was good…equally Smitty put on some good stuff which got a good blow back from Bruce Hayden even Debbie cooled down a bit towards the end and joined the comments debate…I thought it was all informative enough…

    So Debbie will`likely get going on the others over individual articles…or?

  6. I find this article to be very very skeptical. I know BOTH sides of the media use tactics to bolster ratings and to get listeners, but to single out just FOX does not seem to me to represent fair and unbiased reporting/journalism. Why not do a more complete study of say CNN, MSNBC, and FOX, then compare.

  7. I’m about 180 degrees out from your assessment of Fox News. If you were one to believe all the coined phases and gibberish of MSNBC, the propaganda of NBC, the lack of substance on CBS, the folly of ABC, and the many leftist leanings of CNN, you probably believe that George Soros is a savior/good guy, who believes in American values. Every one of those networks I mentioned active supported the election of a President (Obama) who was an empty suit and a resume so thin it wouldn’t wrap fish. Never in the history of this country have we spent so much money, mortgaging the future of our grandchildren in the process, with little or no results.

    After listening to all the mainstream media has to say, you probably buy into the class envy warfare they support; much higher taxes on those who already pay out over 50% of what they make; the great job Obama is doing for our nation, and that we are not in financial crisis as a country. All of us with an once of good sense don’t quite see things your way. Most of us who have succeeded (and give handily to charitable causes, by the way), have done so by putting long hours into school, and working 14-16 hard hours a day to reach success, while about 1/2 the country sat in bars or went home after work with a six-pack to watch TV sitcoms blaming us for keeping the lights on in our offices so we could work longer and harder, thereby destroying “mother earth and using too much energy”. Having lived in the Eastern Block countries doing humanitarian missions for many years, you get a whole new prospective of what is and isn’t real and meaningful news, and quickly see why Fox News is fast becoming the “standard” for info on the US. I further believe Winston Churchill was one of the foremost statesmen of our time, and right on when he so eloquently said, “If you are not a liberal in your youth you have no heart, but if you are not a conservative when you reach age thirty you have no brain”. But all-in-all, that’s the beauty of this country. We can have different opinions and hopefully, not have to resort to “name calling” or fisticuffs at a moment notice.

    • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

      Ed Mattson,twit,shill,knowingly insincere, or all three

      http://www.veteranstoday.com/2011/07/07/major-spy-scandal-suppressed-murdochs-hackers-national-security-threat/

      good post, Menon

    • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

      Ed Mattson,
      was Benito Mussolini a conservative in your opinion?

      (The Lobby/lawyer/finance/political hack) SYNDICATE

      f.d.a. monsanto/pharma abomination
      atf abomination
      AMA CANCER LOBBY abomination

      • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

        •Tyrants create a power structure, consisting of a multi-layered hierarchy, staffed by a conspiracy of accomplices. Accomplices receive their positions as a favor from the tyrant.
        •The worst dregs of society gather around the tyrant – they are people of weak character who trade servility for unearned wealth.
        •Accomplices can profit greatly from their positions in the hierarchy.
        •If people withdraw their support, the tyrant topples over from his own corrupted weight.
        Éttiene de la Boétie.

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          And Binyamin Netanyahu doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And Binyamin Netanyahu deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of John Hagee; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to Binyamin Netanyahu, who had carnal knowledge of John Hagee And he had power to give life unto the image of Binyamin Netanyahu, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. 16And Binyamin Netanyahu causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: 17And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of Binyamin Netanyahu, or the number of his name. 18Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of Binyamin Netanyahu: for it is the number of a man; and his number is

          911……..911…….911…….911…….911…………..911…..911…………

        • Viva Revolution

          When people are quiet under such lies, its lethargy, the path to the death of liberty.
          The tree of liberty must be refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

      • Don’t believe he would be a conservative by my definition. It is hard to have intelligent conversations with anyone with liberal bias. They seem to always seek shelter in stereotypical name calling. Mostly their dislike of the (what used to be) free enterprise system but has since been neutered by political/government interference.
        You are free to speak your thoughts and ill-will for groups like “AMA Cancer Lobby”, but, while always looking out for their own best interests, have still provided folks with a much better survival rate than in the past.

        By the way, the many problems faced by a lot of companies (Dow, Monsanto, et al) is the fact that competing for government and private sector contracts often puts them at odds with the safety aspects of products that need to be manufactured to meet the called-for specs. We all know that lengthy exposure to products like asbestos can create health problems. Almost everyone born between the 30′s-60′s, was exposed to asbestos in clutch and brake linings, insulation, and fire retardant material. Not all who were exposed have been affected like others, so while it was causative of many health issues, it also saved a lot of lives by its usage. This is not to excuse the manufacturers, but to explain “both sides”.

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          Ed Mattson,
          the many problems faced by contemporary society & individuals are companies (Dow, Monsanto, et al) have captured these federal agencies and we are forced at the point of a gun to have to live with & endure & contend with their ABC Armed enforcers. tyranny
          Monsanto pollutes the World to contaminate the tens of thousands of food crop strains & KOURTZ persecute & prosecute Farmers,people,families,Americans who have had the insult & theft of their rights & destroying/contaminating our food strains with no proper response from the Goobermuntzn
          We are compelled & forced at the point of a Gun to put up with and contend with these Corporations legislative/regulatory Agendas & “growth” & “progress”
          Most of their crap we never needed to begin with since they have been so excellent at
          rent-seeking by their psychobabble justifications,
          where have you been the last 50 years ?

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          The Cancer Lobby is a big sick Syndicate
          The Cancer Lobby is on active alert against treatment that works and doesn’t involve their
          chemical/radiation inquisition
          The Cancer Lobby uses Government agencies to enforce their agendas a the point of a Gun,
          actually,Lots of Guns,
          Everyone who hasn’t obeyed their dictates ends up ultimately with a Gun to their head,

      • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

        Who was responsible for the practice which began 25 years ago that in many Cities/Counties anyone with an IQ over 100 automatically had their application for LEO,Corporate enforcement rejected?
        yeah,this is old Newz, the plan is to get as many retards & goons in the ranks of ABC local/county/state/fed,especially fed, like dhs/tsa
        have plenty of dumbed down know nothing goons with heavy weapons to
        ENFORCE THE RURAL AGENDA (21)
        BOLSHEVIKS/KAPOS/CHEKAS TO HELP TAME & ASSIST RURAL AMERICA WITH THE GLOBAL AGENDA

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          schumer,waxman, etc. to help with the rural 21 agenda?

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          FACT
          Who was responsible for the practice which began 25 years ago that in many Cities/Counties anyone with an IQ over 100 automatically had their application for LEO,Corporate enforcement rejected?
          FACT

          • Similar practice by police departments. A principal reason we see so many stories of outright thuggery. You can bet there are many more than what we learn about. The same holds true for the atrocities our troops commit on a daily basis. We are no longer a republic but a fascist oligarchy.

        • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

          China Government territory zones in the States to provide assistance & personnel for
          THE RURAL 21 AGENDA
          IDF to provide technical experts,
          Everyone will be assured of lots of vaccinations, TSA confiscates all geiger-counters/dosimeters in response to an Alert that geiger counters/dosimeters are a terrorist threat
          Confiscation / occupation of agricultural land & assets , including providing security of all food stores/harvest
          and confiscation of seed stock for security
          poisoning the food water air & seed will be enforced for global security

          thoughts about some futures (near)

    • Ed, read “Churchill’s War” by David Irving. Churchill was a drunken sell-out who couldn’t keep a nickel in his pocket.

  8. I don’t understand. Why should we consider these two articles as superb critical analyses of media psychological methodology to implant subversive beliefs in us while the authors themselves seem to be victims or worse in collusion with the media to implant the very same ideas in us? The bogus ideas like Global Warming, Osama’s killing, Obama’s BC, psychology is science, 911, ..

  9. Anonymous Smith

    The most insidious brainwashing propaganda now emanates from the “Alternative” media.

    • So are you saying that the msm is better? I have long recognized the need for intelligent propaganda
      from the side of those who support the Constitution and/or those who are simply Real Human Beings opposed to the raping and looting the planet for profit. We are at war and have been for a long time now.
      currently it is a war of words but that can change at any moment. War demands propaganda.The Fascist Corpocracy is the enemy of all mankind…..except for those who profit off the misery of others.

  10. I like the article but I do think you missed something. And that’s taking the opinion of experts over what we have seen and lived. It’s bad when your own experience is dismissed because you don’t have the degree in that area.

    • Expert is a very relative term. We all know someone who went to college for a dozen years and are blathering idiots. Nowadays eighty percent of the kids will get a piece of paper that’s good for nothing except wiping their asses with it. A 100,000 ass wipe! Most “experts” today are just whores for the politicians and lawyers. They have a script. I’ll take experience over edurmacation any day. But that’s not the trend in this plastic fantastic world!

      • @ Coffeecrimson and Bruce Hayden

        Read what Pat Buchanan has to say about intelligent American Readers

        Who Owns The Future?
        by Patrick J. Buchanan
        12/28/2010

        “That speaks about who is going to be leading tomorrow.”

        So said Angel Gurria, secretary-general of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

        Every three years, the Paris-based OECD holds its Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) tests of the reading, math and science skills of 15-year-olds in developing and developed countries. Gurria was talking of the results of the 2009 tests.

        Sixty-five nations competed. The Chinese swept the board.

        The schools of Shanghai-China finished first in math, reading and science. Hong Kong-China was third in math and science. Singapore, a city-state dominated by overseas Chinese, was second in math, fourth in science.

        Only Korea, Japan and Finland were in the hunt.

        And the U.S.A.? America ranked 14th in reading, 17th in science and 25th in math, producing the familiar quack-quack.

        “This is an absolute wake-up call for America,” said Education Secretary Arne Duncan. “We have to face the brutal truth. We have to get much more serious about investment in education.”

        But the “brutal truth” is that we invest more per pupil than any other country save Luxembourg, and we are broke. And a closer look at the PISA scores reveals some unacknowledged truths.

        True, East Asians — Chinese, Koreans, Japanese — are turning in the top scores in all three categories, followed by the Europeans, Canadians, Australians and New Zealanders.

        But, looking down the New York Times list of the top 30 nations, one finds not a single Latin American nation, not a single African nation, not a single Muslim nation, not a single South or Southeast Asian nation (save Singapore), not a single nation of the old Soviet Union except Latvia and Estonia.

        And in Europe as in Asia, the northern countries (Finland, Norway, Belgium, Iceland, Austria, Germany) outscore the southern (Greece, Italy, Portugal). Slovenia and Croatia, formerly of the Habsburg Empire, outperformed Albania and Serbia, which spent centuries under Turkish rule.

        Among the OECD members, the most developed 34 nations on earth, Mexico, principal feeder nation for U.S. schools, came in dead last in reading.

        Steve Sailer of VDARE.com got the full list of 65 nations, broke down U.S. reading scores by race, then measured Americans with the countries and continents whence their families originated. What he found was surprising.

        Asian-Americans outperform all Asian students except for Shanghai-Chinese. White Americans outperform students from all 37 predominantly white nations except Finns, and U.S. Hispanics outperformed the students of all eight Latin American countries that participated in the tests.

        African-American kids would have outscored the students of any sub-Saharan African country that took the test (none did) and did outperform the only black country to participate, Trinidad and Tobago, by 25 points.

        America’s public schools, then, are not abject failures.

        They are educating immigrants and their descendants to outperform the kinfolk their parents or ancestors left behind when they came to America. America’s schools are improving the academic performance of all Americans above what it would have been had they not come to America.

        What American schools are failing at, despite the trillions poured into schools since the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act, is closing the racial divide.

        We do not know how to close the gap in reading, science and math between Anglo and Asian students and black and Hispanic students.

        And from the PISA tests, neither does any other country on earth.

        The gap between the test scores of East Asian and European nations and those of Latin America and African nations mirrors the gap between Asian and white students in the U.S. and black and Hispanic students in the U.S.

        Which brings us to “Bad Students, Not Bad Schools,” a new book in which Dr. Robert Weissberg contends that U.S. educational experts deliberately “refuse to confront the obvious truth.”

        “America’s educational woes reflect our demographic mix of students. Today’s schools are filled with millions of youngsters, many of whom are Hispanic immigrants struggling with English plus millions of others of mediocre intellectual ability disdaining academic achievement.”

        In the public and parochial schools of the 1940s and 1950s, kids were pushed to the limits of their ability, then pushed harder. And when they stopped learning, they were pushed out the door.

        Writes Weissberg: “To be grossly politically incorrect, most of America’s educational woes vanish if these indifferent, troublesome students left when they had absorbed as much as they were going to learn and were replaced by learning-hungry students from Korea, Japan, India, Russia, Africa and the Caribbean.”

        Weissberg contends that 80 percent of a school’s success depends on two factors: the cognitive ability of the child and the disposition he brings to class — not on texts, teachers or classroom size.

        If the brains and the will to learn are absent, no amount of spending on schools, teacher salaries, educational consultants or new texts will matter.

        A nation weary of wasting billions on unctuous educators who never deliver what they promise may be ready to hear some hard truths.

        http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=40846
        ________________________________________
        Mr. Buchanan is a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Churchill, Hitler, and “The Unnecessary War”: How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World, “The Death of the West,”, “The Great Betrayal,” “A Republic, Not an Empire” and “Where the Right Went Wrong.”

        • BTW, my father told me Finland was the only country that repaid their war debt to the united states.

      • there is truth in what you say Bruce….

  11. So Who Owns the Media & Prints the currency ? Damned by The Almighty, His Son, and every Truth telling, Truth Loving, Justice seeking indivdual on earth…”THEY” call themselves “JEWISH”….so why believe in Shit when truth is available ? [http://www.radioislam.org/medias/index.htm] What does it profit a man to gain the acceptance of “JEW” worshipping morons, “ACADEMICS” Pro-Israel = truth hating, Jesus Hating perverts and idiots and lose his soul ? {Why the reluctance to call a “JEW” a “JEW” ?} [http://disc.yourwebapps.com/discussion.cgi?disc=149495;article=137746;] When Jesus said “Know the Truth”, Was the verbal combat with the children of the devil in Yiddish ? @ John 8:32…I watched as the JEWISH MEDIA and the Zionazi Psychophants ATF/FBI {ADL} terrorists mass Murdered my neighbors using Tanks and Helicopters…and all the good JEW WORSHIPPING BAPTISTS were praising the LYING MASS MURDERERS..check out the links. [wouldn't it be useful to provide the "ETHNIC" tension of the Media owners...especially TalmudVision ?]…and the sciptwriters ? [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wkDBY8E0lcc&feature=related]

    • When people find out about this, there is going to some REAL antisemitism.

      When David Icke, as crazy as he is, talks about the reptiles he really means “The Jews”

      When Zionist disinformationist Alex Jones talks about the “globalists” he means “The Jews”

      For whatever reason we are a philo-semitic bunch and that has ruined our society. I have Jewish friends but they are normal people, atheists, and they don’t care about Israel because they know what is going on.

      Jews are unknowingly involved in some sort of generations old scheme most likely by one family – the Rothschilds. There is no doubt that they infiltrated the Freemasons and to what is their purpose I have no clue but the Freemasons have had a desire to re-build Solomon’s temple on the Temple Mount. Some people say they believe the ‘anti-Christ’ will then return. I say it’s all BS but SOMEBODY is up to no good.

      There are a lot of conspiracy theorists who are batsheeit insane, but there is some truth in this whole NWO thing to a degree, again traced to the Rothschilds. They created an usury banking empire in several nations, instigated wars to introduce democracy, and then got their shills to ‘aid’ those nations with some strings attached in the form of Usury. They conned Americans into the privately-owned Federal Reserve. They were responsible for the World Wars, funded both sides, profited from all of it, and gained Palestine for the Jews in the progress.

      Zionists have used Darby and Scofield to create the rapture and make Palestine for the Jews only which has brainwashed Protestant Christians. The holocaust generates sympathy for them as does the ADL and constant cries of antisemitism.

      When people say we should be allowed to examine history, they shouldn’t be smeared as “Jew haters” and this shouldn’t be a crime like it is in some countries. That indicates that people are hiding something. As time goes on and we realize that the lamp shades and soap were wartime propaganda used to demonize Nazis, that Anne Frank’s diary was written in ball point pen which didn’t exist at the time, that there is no evidence of gas chambers anywhere and forensic tests have proven this, that Auschwitz death toll has been reduced over the years, that Nazis had the crap beaten out of them and signed confessions in a language they didn’t speak, that during the Nuremberg trials they spoke of electrocution and steam extermination methods nobody mentions these days, well it doesn’t take a genius to realize that something is suspicious.

      Especially when hundreds of thousands of Jews are receiving reparations 70 years later. Especially when World Almanac figures do not support the 6 million thing. Especially when the Red Cross documents show that less than 1 million died and mostly of Typhus. A Nazi was executed for mistreating Jewish prisoners. Some Jews were sick and put in hospitals. Many went to multiple camps. Highly suspicious if there was an extermination program in place. Auschwitz even had a swimming pool.

      When something makes sense and people try to smear you for expressing your concerns, they are hiding something. There is no doubt Jews believe the holocaust happened as our history books say it did. But it is impossible for it to have happened like that. No Sonderkommando confession ads up or makes any sense so you can’t point to them as evidence. Plus only a couple ‘survived’. If somebody told me to gas my family and friends and cremate their bodies, I would tell them to kill me. These ‘Sonderkommandos’ are honored though. It makes no sense.

      But when you realize it solidified Israel’s creation and the transfer of refugees to Palestine it makes perfect sense.

      Controlling the wealth means they can buy the media and make politicians be in their debt to donations. Dumb Americans think they have the freedom to chose a candidate but the choice has already been made for them.

      This is reality! Hollywood has been dropping hints for years. The Matrix was one. The recent “Suckerpunch” is another. Americans are too dumb and selfish collectively to realize what is happening.

      • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

        Anne Frank’s diary was written in ball point pen which didn’t exist at the time,

        yeah, I read about that in the 1980′s, hilarious

        • And, I think I read it was written by, or in part, by her father.

          • theBorgHasBeenHereHowLong?

            This page has been deleted. The deletion and move log for the page are provided below for reference.
            15:21, 26 August 2010 JamesBWatson (talk | contribs) deleted “Sayanim” ‎ (G4: Recreation of a page that was deleted per a deletion discussion)
            18:42, 2 August 2010 Gogo Dodo (talk | contribs) deleted “Sayanim” ‎ (G4: Recreation of a page that was deleted per a deletion discussion)
            15:28, 21 July 2010 Black Kite (talk | contribs) deleted “Sayanim” ‎ (Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Sayanim)

            :)

      • Smitty,

        I must take issue with a few of your statements. The Palestinians are Semites. As are the Sephardic
        Jews who are second-class citizens in Israel. The fake Jews who run the country are Ashkenazi and Khazars. They converted (?) around 700 A.D. Thus, to use the term anti-semitic is to disparage the Palestinians. It only takes a few minutes to confirm this for yourself.

        When David Icke uses the term reptilian he means just that. When he wants to say Jew or Zionist he does. If you had read any of his books you would know this. Even if you ignore his reptilian beliefs
        (which I don’t) and his New Age type beliefs (which I do) his books are excellent textbooks on the history of how we came to be in this mess.

        As far as Alex Jones goes, I am glad you recognize that he is not exactly on our side. Perhaps you have seen the video of him disrupting a Second Amendment rally with a bullhorn at the statehouse in Austin. All he succeeded in doing was running off the media coverage. And then the faked infiltration of Bohemian Grove?? It was like a bad reality show. I’ve seen video of him screaming at the top of his lungs that “Israel has the right to exist!” and nearly coming over the top of his desk as he pounded his fist on his radio show. He’s married to a Jewess also. The man has done some good as far as waking people up on a lot of issues but he never condemns Israel.

        I’m not sure what you mean by “conned” when you talk about the Federal Reserve. If you call five or six senators voting for it on Christmas Eve in 1913 (not even close to a quorum) and the rest of the Congress letting it slide than I guess they were conned. The whole issue over a central bank began with the arguments between Jefferson and Hamilton. Too much to get into here but David Griffin’s book, The Creature From Jekyll Island, is an easy to read study. An older one is Secrets of the Temple. Obviously Hamilton has won the day despite the efforts of Jackson, Lincoln and Kennedy
        to take back what was lawfully ours.

        Lastly, I think you haven’t completely broken away from the mainstream kool-aid drinkers yet as far as the NWO is concerned. I say this because you say that there is some truth in this NWO thing TO A DEGREE. How about every time you hear the word “globalist” you just substitute NWO? It’s rather late in the game to take on the whole history of the thing. I’ve been studying this for almost twenty years so I have seen almost everything the ‘not batshit insane conspiracy theorists’. prognosticated come to pass. Nothing surprises me as I have been well-educated in a very small school. I encourage you to say exactly what you mean without waffling (except for the stuff that you think but might get your door kicked in of course). It’s way past the time to care what the unevolved
        ignorant masses think. Their God is television. Take care. My apologies if I am speaking to the choir
        on a few points. Take care.

      • Smitty…. perhaps, as you say, they are finding out…. The WJC (World Jewish Cngress) reports that anti-Semitism is on an unprecedented rise in Canada.

        http://www.worldjewishcongress.org/

        I wonder what has casued such a reaction?

        Has the ingrained and usual bigotry of Candians increased as a natural phenomenon, or are they simply learning more about the facts of Israel and Zionism?

        Or, in connnection with the original topic of this thread, what the media has been telling them, or failing to tell them, about these things?

        Earlaiman

  12. Um-m-m-m, pretty much reinforces what I have always thought I have always known, so I shall smile and move on.

    But, I know a hellova lot of ignorant brainwashed who might benefit from it… except that the author has persuaded me, or reinforced what I have always known, that it would not do them any good!

    I notice most comments depart from what the articles were written about, and divert to the examples given in those articles to clarify a point or present an example.Which, by the way is something which most if not every writer keeps in mind when writing articles, that his detractors are going to target his examples rather than his thesis if they cannot argue the thesis at hand, which in this case is “why people believe the shit they believe, and how some people take advantage of it,” having not a Goddamned thing to do with the topics being discussed here.

  13. Long essay … but I quit reading right here:

    “the belief that climate change isn’t real and/or man-made,”

    The only thing “man-made” about global warming (alias climate change) is the lie that there is such a man-made thing, The email dump was very revealing. Perhaps Debbie hasn’t bothered to read them.

    Amazing that an essay about propaganda would spew propaganda so early in its introduction.

    Todd Marshall
    Plantersville, TX

    • ok now use the word in a sentence,prop a ganda, orgins of the word, vaudeville with out the A humour, B dissent, C passion, culture, danger, intell, intrigue, etc or f truth, propaganda is a puppet show with no viewer feedback, why upset the fatalistic polarazation, treating your what, consumers, as about 12 years old, lord of the flies with a war machine, virtually thats fox sykeeatric targeted demographics, about 12 years old, quit staring, me thinks ya complain of skull drudgery so much the dragon must be , content

  14. I think the problem is the belief that the animal “science and reason” exists. When people disagree in any and all flaps, each side claims to be supported by “facts”. The Reagan example was indeed a fabrication, but many “welfare queen” cases have been verified. Reagan presented an “exaggerated composite”. Is this any less valid than “computer models” or “probability analysis”? Consider this latest Casey Anthony flap. There are really only two facts; (1) a child disappeared, and is apparently dead, (2) the mother has been cleared of murder in a jury trial. Period; end of story. Is any further speculation an exercise in “science and reason”? Further speculation is just that, speculation, and that’s what anything described as science and reason is.

  15. Right on Mike! If the elite pitted Fox against CNN (or any other network) it would turn into the Democrat/Republican name-calling that fills so much commenting space everywhere. It’s all the same pig. Just different skirts and lipsticks on different days.

  16. Just think how easy Mountain Climbing would be if you got a helicopter ride to the top. Saves a lot of time and energy. Once an educator {Black Man} wrote in my “annual”…”When you have a job to do, do it with a will, for those that reach the top must first climb the hill”…Kinda stuck with me. After “paying dues” for over 30 years…it just seems logical to narrow the focus on the PARTIES OF INTEREST…CUI BONO ? Who Prints the Currency, Who Owns the Media…Truth tellers or “JEWS”. What specifically makes someone “JEWISH” if it is not the Talmud & hating Jesus ? Where does Bad Faith come from ? {Talmud} All socalled “Media” in the west…Christian Democracies, first world nations are owned by Talmudic terrorists….because “THEY” print the currency. See THEY LIVE. Instead of avoiding the Truth at all costs {academia} …why not take a “Helicopter” to the Top…ask someone who knows. And then find out if the Truth is actually true. See Eustace Mullins THE WORLD ORDER. & The Curse of Canaan. Should one really wish to process true information to reach a true conclusion one must justifiably homicide TALMUVISION !!

  17. Then you have that large number of people who simply refuse to read anything or listen to anything that is not in agreement with what they have already decided is true.

  18. Last night soldiers’ charities demanded that the police release the names contained in Mulcaire’s 9,200 pages of records so they can discover whether they were targets.

    Col Douglas Young, the chairman of the British Armed Forces Federation, said police were failing families by leaving them in the dark about whether or not they had been targets.

    He said he would seek a meeting with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner if families were not told within days whether or not they may have been hacked.

    “It is now imperative that the police do follow up and do say as quickly as possible ‘we have now contacted everybody involved’ because otherwise it is going to leave a lot of worry and concern,” he said.

    A spokesman for the Army Families Federation added: “Families who have endured the loss of their soldier will find this privacy assault disgusting and indefensible, as will all serving personnel who will question the sanctity of their precious phone calls home.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/phone-hacking/8621797/Phone-hacking-families-of-war-dead-targeted-by-News-of-the-World.html

    • This obviously ties in with Gordon’s latest article on Murdoch and spying for Israel. Seems like someone is going to be murdered as part of the cover up. That’s just the feeling I get.

  19. As with any historical event, the details of what happened at Kent State began to blur within hours.

    Actually, details about any complex incident become terribly muddled within minutes. It’s human nature. Over 100 years ago in The Art of Cross Examination, Francis Wellman documented extraordinary examples of witnesses’ conflicting accounts of the same event and the ways a good trial attorney can use psychological stress to make the most adamant and well-versed witness’s testimony look like inconsistent deception.

    One thing about the news on TV is the context itself. The setting, lavish technology on display, appearance of authority, vast audiences, etc, all give the appearance of authenticity to an uncritical and unthinking audience. Tangential to Penumbra’s comment, the “news” is frequently a series of bald assertions which become like infectious memes when encapsulated in emotionally latent images. People do not fully take in what they see, and suggesting an interpretation simultaneously with emotionally latent images may be a powerful form of brainwashing.

  20. Great and necessary article Deb, unfortunately despite proper delineation of the argument for reinforced “beliefs” (memes, as it were) being based on hardened preconceptions in the face of concrete material fact to the contrary, you fall into the trap of endorsing the establishment (not left/right, simply “the establishment”) trap of using this important construct to reinforce the fraud of Obama’s natural-born status. This is not a matter of “belief” save for those who tenaciously cling to the fraud as fact (which you appear to do in the article).

    Simply put the “long form” BC, which itself was produced only years after it was rightly insisted upon and then in conjunction with an Executive Branch propaganda package that culminated in the May 1st “Osama bin killed” farce (an actual example of what you seek to outline above). This BC was categorically proven to be a forgery and one hardly need to be a rocket scientist to discover the clear textual inconsistencies and material abnormalities of the document presented to the American public. To believe anything presented by a repeatedly proven liar is to be a fool and this late attempt by the Obama regime to silence ongoing scrutiny of his eligibility to even hold the office as they were gearing up for yet another illegal invasion of a sovereign country purely for hegemonic aims, is the icing on the fool’s cake.

    It is not a matter of “belief” but material fact. Obama was, is and always shall be a construct, groomed from childhood for his duplicitous role in the corporatist oligarchy’s political drama (incrementalist-scripted narrative, if you will) to divide the sheep and keep them fighting each other instead of real threats to their welfare in the halls of power here at home, primarily within the oval office, Congress, USSC, inside the beltway and all other agencies within its proximity.

    Take this from one who is neither left right nor center, but solely interested in material documented fact. That fact is Obama is the child of a foreign national father, whose mother and grandmother both worked for the CIA and criminal banking syndicate respectively. ‘Ol barry is just the latest front man for a fraud that has controlled this nation and the minds of its predominantly inattentive and adolescent-minded population since dishonest Abe at the very least and perhaps back to the founders themselves with few exceptions.

    You also seem to carry on the endorsement of patently transparent fraud by calling the “Osama shooting” farce a “conspiracy theory”. Conspiracy clearly yes, theory no.

    If you insist on applying the preferred narrative style and memes of the mainstream media, then be aware that those who actually bother to research matters for themselves will soon come to view anything you have to say as suspect.

    Take it under advisement from one who still has respect for your work.

    • I’ve missed you Penumbra. You posted a comment on one of the Libya articles I think but otherwise not much lately.

      • Yes Penumbra you have been “missed”…..
        Nice to see you back….
        Please enlighten the mass ….
        All are starved for coherency…..

    • OK, Penumbra you are doing to me exactly what the writers describe in those articles above…. you agree with me in general… Yep… I am absolutely correct… except…..! And then you shift the topic ( a distraction technique), zero in on the Obama Birth Certificate, parlays it into a lifetime of fraud (exaggeration) and deceit on the part of Obama, and shoots me down for beings stupid , and ignorant, for not knowing that Obama is and has been a fraud from the day he was born…(posing a bigger and better lie, or unsupported assertion at best) “It is not a matter of “belief” but material fact. Obama was, is and always shall be a construct, groomed from childhood for his duplicitous role in the corporatist oligarchy’s political drama (incrementalist-scripted narrative…” And, I did not know that….?

      Infreakincredible!

      I know you are not simple minded or stupid … so what gives Penumbra.

      I have never said anything one way or the other about what I believe or disbelieve about Obama’s birth status and you should not make such wild presumptions about what I believe without checking with me for my opinion first (or at least citing the reference when I said it).

      In my opinion, this argument is not worth pursuing. After nearly four years in office Obama’s natural birth rights as an American are a moot issue and irrelevant. Whatever the facts, they will change nothing.

      But, this simply demonstrates how an informative article critical of the levels of American gullibility, general intellectual and cognizant awareness, and powers of reason, as well as the culpability and the failures of the Media can be turned into a distraction over a birth certificate. But… not unless I join in and play the game. So… won’t!

      Thanks for chiming in anyways and welcome back. I have also respected you in the past for your intelligent contributions to the comments section of Veterans Today.

      • Thanks Penumbra. Deb, you gave yourself up on that one. A President in violation of a fundamental constitutional principal is not moot because the Constitution is not moot. A globalist might consider it moot, and obviously Obama thinks it moot.

    • I hadn’t learned anything new up to the birth certificate part so I stopped reading. I figured anyone who was knowledeable on that issue would have flip-flopped the birthers and the braindead idiots. I’m glad I stopped there as I would have definitely stopped by the time she got to the Osama morphing fairy tale.
      I see a lot of misinformation on this site. Like a bad movie, I’ll just keep watching to see if it can get any worse.

    • I wholehearted agree with your assessment of Obama. He has been groomed from the start (as was Clinton) to be someone the ruling elites can present to the sheeple as their savior, but who instead turns around and sells them out and destroys their hopes and trust in the government and beliefs in themselves in the bagain. After Bush, the ruling class needed someone who could seemingly energize the public into believing a new world was about to be born. Obama has, instead, dashed all those possibilities and hopes beyond measure. All you have to do to see how far he has sunk is the secret negoitiations with the Reubs to get a grand agreement on cutting benefits and programs for the public to maintain the lavish tax breaks for the wealthy so they can be secure in keeping the wealth they steal from the workers who created it. The elite, indeed, are so sure they are secure from anything the people can do that rather than being concerned that the public will be turned off by Obama’s lies and broken promises so they won’t bother to vote, that is the whole point of their exercise that turns the public into catatonic creatures who will just dutifully do that they are told.

      As the joke in England goes about Klegg, why did Obama cross the road? It’s because he promised not to.

      Prien

      • “…believing a new world was about to be born.”

        Yeah, Prien, it’s called the new world order…

      • Does it even matter whether he was groomed from the start, every American President will be eventually hated ?

        Nothing will change, and if he is reelected, he will not change, and he will still be hated.

        And if he is not reelected then whoever is elected will be tolerated long enough for the public to discover that nothing has changed and they will learn to hate the new President.

        You still don’t know what and where the problem lies and that nothing is going to change, hate the US President or otherwise, until that situation changes??

    • Hey, Pen…

  21. @Mike, First… you establish your credentials, “I have studied the tactics used by the media for several years now…..” which loads your weapons with heavy duty, and gives you status as a qualified speaker ?? Then, you open your attack on Boaz…. (attack/discredit the author or her words) by attributing purpose and motive to the author which she has not stated in her article, but something which every reader is allowed to do and often does, but which no valid critic can do without more supporting evidence than your own opinion or hearsay, to wit; “(She) chose to focus her attack on FOX instead of the entire Corporate media.”)

    Huh! In my introduction remarks I clearly implied that FOX was cited by the author only as an egregious example and but one of the many other fundamental building blocks, without indicating that it was extreme or otherwise much or any different from the run of the mill MSM.

    I know you are a regular contributor to Veterans Today, I have not thoroughly studied your stance. As regards your take on Truthout, I agree from a cursory read Truthout is probably better than it was under Marc Ash when I use to blog there years ago; but still no different, hardly better or worse, than any of the other progressive web sites. I still have my apprehension about the degree of Zionist influence of penetration there, inasmuch as I still do not believe that they are focusing on Zionism as much as they are on immediate symptoms and ailments caused by Zionism as the source of the problems.

    I have been saying this for years, You cannot defeat a disease or a plague by treating the symptoms… and you cannot even cure the symptoms by treating them with aspirin when radical surgery is required. They seem to lack the forceful focus on Zionism that Will Rivers Pitt once brought to bear on GWB and the Bush administration. Pitt once explained himself by describing how much he “hated George Bush….” It s insufficient to “hate George Bush” a symptom, without “hating the cause” of the disease even more.

    Years ago I used to run word searches on Truthout for “Israel,” “Zionism,” “Palestine” etc, and always came up with zilch. I get better results now on word searches, but the criticisms when read are mild, toothless and offer no real meat to bite into.

    The Bush, the Obama and American administrations, foreign domestic policy and the US Congress are NOT the fundamental problems here, they are simply symptoms and effects of the decades old Zionist infectious plague, which is the fundamental problem.. as is Palestine and all of the other issues in the Middle East and North Africa.

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