Sunday, October 06, 2002

vaara sez:

I was leafing through Norman Davies' wonderful history of Europe (imaginatively entitled Europe: A History), when the following caught my eye.

Theorists of propaganda have identified five basic rules:

1. The rule of simplification: reducing all data to a simple confrontation between 'Good and Bad', 'Friend and Foe'.

2. The rule of disfiguration: discrediting the opposition by crude smears and parodies.

3. The rule of transfusion: manipulating the consensus values of the target audience for one's own ends.

4. The rule of unanimity: presenting one's viewpoint as if it were the unanimous opinion of all right-thinking people: drawing the doubting individual into agreement by the appeal of star-performers, by social pressure, and by 'psychological contagion'.

5. The rule of orchestration: endlessly repeating the same messages in different variations and combinations.

Explains a lot, doesn't it?