The New and Improved Propaganda

Adolf Hitler and his Minister of Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, took great pride in their campaign to instill fear in the German people between 1933 and 1945.

They understood that the strongest and most renewable emotion in mankind is fear, and that, once a people have been won over by fear, there’s very little that you can’t get them to do.

To provide a focus for fear, a demon is necessary. Ideally, the people already fear a demon of some sort. If so, this demon should be co-opted and the fear magnified.

However, if no demon is already perceived by the people, one must be created.

The Nazis chose existing demons. Many Germans had an existing fear and hatred for Jews, non-whites and homosexuals, so the Nazis did all they could to demonise them and to present themselves as the crusaders against these demons.

Once this relationship has been created – that the only way to be saved from the demons is for the government to defeat them – the rest is actually quite simple. The creation of a police state, the banning of publicly held weapons, the pogroms, the waging of war, all of it can be accomplished by describing them as necessary in the defeat of the demons.

Hitler realised early on that the fear need not be rational. Once he understood that principle, he recognised that he could exaggerate the perceived danger of the demons, and as long as he maintained the rhetoric, the fear would increase considerably. As he himself stated,

“Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it and eventually, they will believe it.”

His speeches went a long way to increasing the fear, but Joseph Goebbels expanded the fear even more. He understood that if the Nazis took control of the media, they could implement the indoctrination far more thoroughly. Through the media, his goal was to degrade the thought processes of the German people to the point that they behaved as they were programmed to. As he pointed out,

“Let me control the media and I will turn any nation into a herd of pigs.”

Over time, he became extremely adept at controlling the media, and eventually, he only needed to focus on new rhetoric, as the media had become co-conspirators by repeating previously established rhetoric. His overview was,

“Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play.”

The German people were whipped into a lather in their hatred of the demons that had been promoted. When warfare was begun, they went along enthusiastically.

It was only when the casualties began to mount and German cities began to be bombed that they began to falter.

At that point, Messrs. Hitler and Goebbels increasingly relied on a more sophisticated demon: terrorism. As Hitler said at that time,

“Terrorism is the best political weapon, for nothing drives people harder than a fear of sudden death.”

But just what is it about the terrorism threat that’s so effective in scaring the populace?

Well, if Jews, non-whites and homosexuals are a perceived danger, they can be loaded onto trains and taken away, never to be seen again. And if even one such demon slips through the cracks and remains in your neighbourhood, he is, at least, a known quantity. It’s clear to all as to how to address the problem: Report his presence and have the authorities drag him off. Problem solved.

But terrorism is not a person; it’s an abstract.

That may seem like a small distinction, but it’s not. It’s of major importance in terms of its effectiveness in creating fear.

Terrorism is faceless and bodiless. It has no numerical limitation. It can be anyone: the man down the street or the neighbour across the hall. But best of all, an abstract can never truly be defeated. Its threat can be presented as being endless.

And if only the government can save you from the abstract demon, it stands to reason that, whatever rights must be given up, whatever losses must be suffered, this must be accepted. Submission to the demands of the leaders is essential.

Further, once fear has replaced reason, a people no longer ask why submission will bring about results; they simply submit and trust in the State.

As clever as the leaders of the Third Reich were, they only discovered the ultimate demon late in the game… But modern governments took it a step further.

Around the turn of the millennium, the nations of the former Free World began a campaign to create a fear of terrorism. They used the traditional principles: Create a demon out of existing concerns, expand upon the actual, then, through the use of repeated rhetoric, replace reason with fear.

Today, we’re so well-conditioned that, if we were in a queue at the airport and someone held up a sign that said, “terrorist,” we’d all want the authorities to come ASAP and drag him off. We’d have no concern whatever as to what his fate might be. Our only concern would be that he was now gone. Like the Germans, we’ve been successfully programmed to overreact with fear… to a mere word on a sign.

But the New Propaganda predates the “war on terrorism.” It began when another demon, Global Cooling, was created. It then became Global Warming, then Climate Change. In spite of the overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary, the Climate Change demon thrives, due to unrelenting rhetoric. Hitler was correct. Once again,

“Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it and eventually, they will believe it.”

But a third demon has recently been born in the form of the coronavirus. Was this a virus that began in the markets of Wuhan? Was it created in a lab by the Chinese? Was it created by the West and planted in China?

In fact, the true cause matters little.

It will be used to full effect as a demon to terrify the masses. It will be blown out of all proportion to justify the further implementation of a police state, the refusal of the right to cross borders and, ultimately, the shutting-down of the economy.

The government will not be blamed, as the virus is an invisible enemy that only governments can save us from. When told to be obedient and to sacrifice beyond all reason, we shall do so.

Terrorism, Climate Change and the coronavirus are the New Propaganda: a triumvirate of demons that are impossible to pin down. They are abstracts that we have been assured will destroy us.

The message is clear: Our only hope in surviving them is submission to those in charge.


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