March 12, 2013

On Deception - 4: More about propaganda
THE conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.
E. Bernays, opening of "Propaganda"
"Dissent is done with. Reason is done with. Intellect is done with. Common sense is done with. Everything the "Enlightenment" taught us is done with. We now live in an age, prescribed by Sigmund Freud's nephew, Edward Bernays, where "a leadership democracy administered by the intelligent minority who know how to regiment and guide the masses" has finally dawned upon humanity."
-- Gilles d'Aymery: Propaganda: Then and now


1. Backgrounds of deception
2. Kinds of deception
3. Theorists of deception
About ME/CFS


This continues
with some more information about propaganda. If you click the last link, you'll find links to the other two files, for which I will soon provide an index, since it is likely there will be more in the series.

The present Nederlog only gives some more information and links on the subject, but then if the subject interests you - and it should, for it explains much about your daily life and about politics - you'll find the materials linked to interesting.

Backgrounds of deception

When I found Edward Bernays' "Propaganda" on the internet in April last year, which I mentioned in my Nederlog of April 23, I knew very rapidly that this was something that would unriddle quite a few things for me, and indeed it did.

You find that text here
although as yet without my notes.

It turns out he is not the only father of "PR" ("public relations", to be considered below) as the professional liars and deceivers for hire like to call themselves. Here is one of Bernays' day and age, roughly, who also has as a claim to fame that he is "the father of public relations", as documented on Wikipedia:
There are also more modern ones, especially concerned with politics, in which case this industry of lying, deceiving and misinforming is best called propaganda (though the perpetrators themselves seem to call it "political consultancy")
and indeed there are many more, and in fact not only commercial agencies who will lie, deceive, misinform, and mislead a public for money and call this "public relations", but whole well-known institutions that are supposedly committeed to "research" that are referred to as "think tanks" in fact are often much better - much more truly, mucvh more realistically 0 descrined as institutes for propaganda.

2. Kinds of deception

Next, while what is most often called "PR" or "public relations" (here is Wikipediaś take on the subject; here mine) in fact is professional conmanship in any case - as I use terms - and while it is difficult to give precise definitions, it makes sense to distinguish three kinds of it - and I link in the first words of each alternative to the appropriate Wikipedia-article:
  1. advertisement: propaganda for and about commodities
  2. marketing: propaganda for product lines and corporations
  3. propaganda: political propaganda to mislead publics

  4. compliance professionals
In either case, the term "propaganda" is meant to convey that in each of these cases the public that is being worked on with advertisements, marketing slogans and name branding, or political propaganda dressed up as kind advice to members of the public, is being intentionally misled, lied to and deceived.

Also, each case may shade into another, and indeed major corporations engage these days normally in all three activities, namelyto sell their products, to get themselves known and admired or desired - "brand marked" - by customers and others, and to infiuence or ideed create or provoke political decisions that may effect the corporations.

But the techniques and also the publics which are targeted differ, as indeed makes sense, even though the main aim - mislead the public into making choices that benefit the corporation's interests - is the same.

And I should remark that while marketing and political propaganda, if done professionally, are dishonest and false from the start, there still is a small percentage of advertising, usually for small businesses, on the old pattern of "you can buy the best quality X for a mere Y dollars at Z" - that is, it seeks to inform you (perhaps dishonestly) rather than manipulate you.

Finally, the name "compliance professionals" covers all three professionals, and also of some other professions (secret services, police).

3. Theorists of deception

There is of course the arch-deceivers own text, which is quite interesting and quite brazen, viz. Edward Bernays "Propaganda", but while Bernays texts are useful to learn how to deceive (as Goebbels also publicly stressed), they are far from honest, as they practice what they preach.

There are a number of men and books that seem a lot more honest, and certainly are not by persons who grew rich through the craft of deception:
Stuart Ewen teaches history, sociology and media studies, and can be seen and heard talking in Adam Curtis's
which is a very interesting four part four hours series of BBC documentaries about the mutual influences of public relations, psychiatry and politics, and concentrates on the Freud family, notably Sigmund Freud's nephew Edward Bernays and his daughter Anna Freud.

Here are some relevant links
  Noam Chomsky is the famous linguist, philosopher and anarchist, and Edward Herman is his co-author of "Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media", linked above (which is a book I managed to have missed for 25 years) that was much inspired by work of Alex Carey, who died in 1987.

The Wikipedia-item on
Alex Carey has a number of interesting links at the end, which includes this one from what seems to be an interesting radio station:
from which I quote:
Alex Carey: Corporations and Propaganda
The Attack on Democracy
The 20th century, said Carey, is marked by three historic developments: the growth of democracy via the expansion of the franchise, the growth of corporations, and the growth of propaganda to protect corporations from democracy. Carey wrote that the people of the US have been subjected to an unparalleled, expensive, 3/4 century long propaganda effort designed to expand corporate rights by undermining democracy and destroying the unions. And, in his manuscript, unpublished during his life time, he described that history, going back to World War I and ending with the Reagan era. Carey covers the little known role of the US Chamber of Commerce in the McCarthy witch hunts of post WWII and shows how the continued campaign against "Big Government" plays an important role in bringing Reagan to power.

John Pilger called Carey  "a second Orwell", Noam Chomsky dedicated his book, Manufacturing Consent, to him. And even though TUC Radio runs our documentary based on Carey's manuscript at least every two years and draws a huge response each time, Alex Carey is still unknown.
I found two programs for this item in two versions, that seem the same in terms of content, but I have only heard all of only one set of two, also the smallest downloads as it happens, so here are the links from TUC radio 4041
This contains a considerable amount of text by Carey, as was mentioned in the above quotation. This is well worth listening to, and I am glad it is on line. [1]
[1] It may be that the two versions differ, and if I find out they do I will mention this in Nederlog. They start the same, but the one listed has two files of 29 minutes each, and the alternative one two files of 58 minutes each, each of which takes a little over 20 MB.

About ME/CFS (that I prefer to call M.E.: The "/CFS" is added to facilitate search machines) which is a disease I have since 1.1.1979:
1. Anthony Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS(pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why  (currently not available)

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2003)
5. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2011)
6. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

7. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)
Maarten Maartensz
Resources about ME/CFS
(more resources, by many)

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