The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Conservative Propaganda Machine Churns On, Vol 2; Part 13


It has been months since I revisited conservative propaganda as an obstructionist weapon against improving the nation financially and as a strategy for the 2012 Election.

Since the morning of November 5, 2008, conservatives have embarked on well-funded information messages for consolidation of their base and to capture the ear of uninformed voters.  The messages have been consistent and persistent, while conservatives in congress have boldly declared 'no cooperation' during a period when the nation needs cooperation the most.  Conservative media uses outright lies and 'slight-of-hand video editing in supporting of the propaganda.  As is the case with most propaganda, people buy-into it and act upon it.

The un-American like exhibitions of discord and unruly behavior at Democratic town hall meetings during the summer of 2009, are classic examples of effective propaganda.  Healthcare reform  legislation did not include Sarah Palin's claims of  'death panels'.  Reform also has less impact on Medicare recipients than Paul Ryan'sPath to Prosperity.  Republican town halls this summer have experienced that same level of angst, but from  more diverse  demographics groups. The LEFT has not developed a set of Rights Principles as a tool to promulgate  propaganda.



How long after the January 20, 2009 inauguration did we see the birth of the Tea Party?  How long after that birth did print and electronic media show the most vile, hateful and in many cases racist  placards and signage ever broadcast.  I took a liberty there, Tea Party placards and signage will have to settle for second place behind, Ku Klux Klan and Nazi party signage.  Nonetheless, the signage was visual exhibition of national discord rooted in conservative  propaganda.  Funding for Tea Party organizations such as FreedomWorks comes straight from the extensive and deep hoppers of the Koch Brothers and other 'uber' wealthy conservatives.  When coupled with slick political operatives like Dick Armey,  propaganda has yielded notable results for the poli/social right.

Political operatives like Karl Rove, Dick Armey and Roger Ailes (Bush the Elder) in partnership with highly compensated media public relations personalities deliver messages that win elections.  A couple of examples of the Propaganda Machine: Roger Ailes 'Willie Horton' ad campaign and the very effective Swift Boats Campaign against John Kerry.   For a couple of examples of Right-wing media contributions to the Machine.

Media
Rush Limbaugh....
Well, he inherited a AAA credit rating, an unemployment rate of 5.7%. Does anybody doubt this is on purpose?

Sean Hannity.... (New York Magazine)
Last night, Sean Hannity echoed Limbaugh, except that Hannity's figures say that Obama inherited a slightly better 5.6 percent unemploymetn rate.
Propaganda!  Both public relations experts know the data depicted in the chart just above.
The effectiveness of propaganda relates directly to the target audience  for the message.  Limbaugh's audience (some self-declared ditto-heads) will gobble-up any utterance that emanates from his EIB Network radio show. They will buy into the  5.7% figures as readily as hot apple pie and vanilla ice cream.  Hannity's audience is even more accepting of his subterfuge as he and his producers practiced 'message based/less than factual' editing of video tape. Comedy Central's Jon Stewart masterfully spoke about their discovery of 'effect edited video'' and other media networks have provided evidence of Fox News rallying up Tea Party crowds for camera shots.
For the uninformed or disinterested,  propaganda works.

Politicians
Rick Perry....
The effectiveness of propaganda is not lost on the current group of 'wanna bes' who are campaigning for the GOP nomination in 2012.
Current front-runner, Rick Perry, knows the value of strategically  placed messages with loose-fitting content.  Perry claims to have produced 40% of America jobs in the past two years.  He makes the claim as he attempts campaign leverage.

Perry, South Carolina, Aug. 13: Since June of 2009, Texas is home to 40 percent of all the jobs added in the United States.
According to a Business School professor at Southern Methodist University, the claim is a play of words and  is true for the state governors over the past 41 years.  Another author writes that while the jobs were created, state population growth has spiraled resulting in a high unemployment rate (the case with many other states).
"This point goes neglected," says Bernard L. Weinstein, professor of business economics in the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. "Yes, Texas has created more jobs than any other state" in the last two years. "But that’s been true since 1970. For the last 41 years Texas has added more jobs than any other state, and in most years, has led the nation in job creation," Weinstein told us. "So Gov. Perry can claim that these jobs were created on his watch, but they were created on everybody else’s watch too."
Other media sources have reported that the jobs referenced by Perry are often low wage jobs and few of those jobs have no opportunity for medical coverage and other benefits.  It is also important to note that Texas has no state tax (favorable for employers), benefits from oil money, and it has many military installations (potential sources for jobs).
While Perry is speaking the truth about pure employment numbers, his words lend to propaganda as they do not include a 'back story'.  A FactCheck.org article  shows Perry's propaganda in an easy to read perspective.

The Iowa Debate....
.......So, during Romney's four years in office, the state's annual unemployment rate went from 5.3 percent to 5 percent, while the national unemployment rate fell from 5.8 percent to 4.6 percent.

Bachmann....
Bachmann, Aug. 11: It was very important that we not raise the debt ceiling, because — consider what happened. The Congress gave Barack Obama a blank check for $2.4 trillion. What did the American people get in return? $21 billion in illusory cuts.
As we have written before, a "blank check" means unlimited spending.
As for the "$21 billion in illusory cuts," Bachmann is referring to the estimated impact on the federal deficit in the first year. The CBO estimates that the debt-ceiling agreement would reduce the federal deficit by $2.1 trillion over 10 years, including $756 billion over that time by capping discretionary spending.

Ron Paul....

I actually hate to give narrative here because Paul is a very old man and at times appears 'out of sync' with reality.
Ron Paul said that the CIA has told him that there is "no evidence" Iran is "working on" a nuclear weapon.
(Debate moderator Chris ) Wallace, Aug. 11: As for Iran's nuclear ambitions, you wrote this: "One can understand why they might want to become nuclear capable, if only to defend themselves and to be treated more respectfully." Is that your policy towards Iran?
Paul: Well, even our own CIA gives me this information, that they have no evidence that they're working on a weapon.

New York Times, May 30: The nine-page report raised questions about whether Iran has sought to investigate seven different kinds of technology ranging from atomic triggers and detonators to uranium fuel. Together, the technologies could make a type of atom bomb known as an implosion device, which is what senior staff members of the I.A.E.A. have warned that Iran is able to build.
Paul's brand of propaganda is often based in some stratosphere well beyond Earth, but nonetheless, it is propaganda.

Gingrich..... (Click link below, a must read)

As is generally the case, Gingrich responded to his obvious flip-flop that led to a form of propaganda.  He responded by taking the offense and labeling a friendly (Fox News) commentator with asking a 'gotcha question'.
Baier asked:
Baier, Aug. 11: Speaker Gingrich, as President Obama was deciding what to do in Libya, you were asked what you would do. You said, quote, "exercise a no-fly zone this evening, communicate to the Libyan military that Gadhafi was gone, and that sooner they switched sides the more likely they were to survive."
After the president launched military action a few days later you said, quote, "I would not have intervened. I think there were other ways to affect Gadhafi."
Are you certain about the way forward in Libya and where it stands now?
Gingrich called this "a gotcha question," and said that two weeks before the first comment, he had told Fox News' Greta Van Susteren that "we should … go in covertly, use Egyptian and other allies not use American forces." Gingrich then said that he was responding to Obama's change in position:
Gingrich, Aug. 11: I said that thing specifically after the president that day announced gloriously to the world as president of the United States that Gadhafi has to go. And I said if the president of the United States is serious about Gadhafi going, this is what we should do. The following interview came after the same president said, well, I didn't really mean go meant go, I meant go meant maybe we should have a humanitarian intervention. Now, the fact that I was commenting on Fox about a president who changes his opinion every other day ought to be covered by a Fox commentator using all the things I said, not handpicking the ones that fit your premise.
In a March7 , interview with Van Susteren, Gringrich said that the U.S. should say "we're intervening" and "exercise a no-fly zone." On March 23, he told Matt Lauer on NBC's "Today" show that "I would not have intervened." He added that "allies in the region" could have helped, but he "would not have used American and European forces."

Before the March 7 interview, on Feb. 24, Gingrich did suggest covert operations, as he said in the debate, telling Van Susteren that the U.S. should "be encouraging" people in the Libyan military to replace Gadhafi. But he did not mention using "Egyptians," and instead said that the U.S. "with the Europeans" should "isolate and cut off mercenaries from being hired."

These are but a few of the latest cases of political propaganda from the Right.  Some might say, well they seem more political  pandering,  exaggerations, campaign half-truths, and outright lies.  Of that I agree,  but if one looks closer at the comments it is hard to avoid clear subterfuge for audiences that will buy into the misinformation (without question).

Merriam- Webster appears to agree in its definition:
2: the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3: ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one's cause or to damage an opposing cause; also : a public action having such an effect
Yes, the conservative propaganda machine churns on.  It will go on unchecked if sites such as FACT CHECK and Left leaning media fail to stay diligent with watchful eyes and questioning tendencies. People like you and me also spread the word via websites which also give opportunity to share information that combat and refute the propaganda machine.

Rest assured if left completely unchecked, elections are won by people like George Bush and Dick Cheney.

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