Reality, Russia, and Fake News Propaganda

By Ross Powell, Contributor  USDR

 

We live in an era of abbreviated attention spans, moral relativism, and the prominence of emotional hypersensitivity over logic and critical thinking. Such an environment is fertile ground for propaganda that plays on confirmation bias, normalcy bias, and cognitive dissonance. The manipulation and even control of the thoughts, ideas, and actions of both individuals and nations is as much a scientific venture as particle physics. Before launching into a macro-level discussion of the transparently ridiculous and obviously desperate strategies currently being employed by the globalists and the obsolete media, it is worth establishing an important, common sense grounding  principle:

Propaganda is the rule – not the  exception.

 

Propaganda can be understood as the intentional dissemination of disinformation, misinformation, or even the omission of information in order to achieve a goal. Every institution has a vested interest in making sure that its communications realize their intended effects. A government may need to steer public opinion in order to accomplish some political objective. A military must confuse and distract its enemy. A company wants to highlight the benefits of its own product while emphasizing the drawbacks of a competitor’s product. Anything short of the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth is propaganda of one form or another. We call it persuasion. We call it counterintelligence. We call it marketing. We call it sales. It’s all  propaganda.

If you think that our government and established institutions in media, industry, and finance don’t actively produce propaganda, then please stay tuned after the article as I also have a nice bridge that I think you will find to be an attractive investment opportunity. Let’s state it plainly: they lie. They omit, spin, distort, overplay, and fabricate. Their objectives are more important than the truth. Their narrative is more important than reality. Deceivers under deception eventually believe the lies they tell even though they know that they are  false.

When feelings and power matter more than evidence and truth, we can find ourselves pushed to extremes as a society. When this dynamic has occurred in the past it typically doesn’t go quietly into the night. When those in power are willing to destroy innocent lives in order to retain their influence and control, they certainly will be willing to lie in order to preserve themselves. After the election of Donald Trump, the globalists and obsolete media have gone into an absolute tailspin. They believed their own lie of Hillary Clinton’s inevitability. They clearly manufactured evidence to support it. The puppeteers of cognitive dissonance are tasting their own medicine, and the result would be comical if it weren’t so lunatic and  dangerous.

Their refrain has been difficult to avoid over the past month: yell as loud as possible, blame Russia and ‘fake news’, and assert everything as  fact.

Where is the evidence that Russia hacked or otherwise influenced the elections? Will you believe an anonymous report that you can’t look at from the CIA, an organization whose stated goals and tools both include propaganda? Or will you believe Julian Assange, the head of Wikileaks, an organization that has published millions of documents without a single case of demonstrably doctored or false information? Who has more credibility: the people who looked you in the eye and said that Trump would never win or someone who has risked life and limb to increase awareness of the truth behind how powerful institutions  operate?

Who decides what is ‘fake news’? Is it a list made up by a leftist professor? Is it a nameless, faceless group that is less than six months old presenting a declaration without any substantiation? Is it the obsolete media that regurgitates these sources and – before having to walk the allegations back – simply proclaims them to be accurate? Is it the social censorship networks and websites who ban accounts and restrict content based on nonconformity to specific ideological platforms? Why don’t evidence and track records of honesty determine the authenticity of  news?

I agree that fake news is dangerous. We’re still fighting in the Middle East a decade and a half after 9/11 and the historic lie of weapons of mass destruction. Should every outlet who reported that falsehood as fact be declared a ‘fake news’ source? The question is what standard will we use to evaluate the various benchmarks of truth and  falsehood.

As if things weren’t complicated enough, as a society we have been taught that truth and morality are subjective, relative, and situational. We live in a culture where people seem perfectly willing to claim that whatever they believe is true simply because they believe it in any particular moment. This is what is being taught and reflects what many so-called scholars believe. However, just because logic and critical thinking aren’t part of the standard educational curriculum doesn’t mean they have  vanished.

The latest attempts by obsolete institutions to regain their credibility stems from the utter embarrassment of their inaccurate election forecasts and the resulting backlash from their supporters. It seems that these ideological zealots are still in various forms of denial and anger. These stages of the grief and loss process are the most dangerous because the cognitive dissonance is still acutely painful. The subconscious dialogue is rather vicious. We couldn’t have been wrong. We couldn’t have lost. It must have been someone else. It must be this group who opposed us. We hate them and what they stand for. Let’s marginalize and discredit them. Then everyone will believe us  again.

This exercise in desperate groupthink is simply the blind leading the blind. It is the natural result of following what your emotions tell you to do in every situation, getting your news from Comedy Central, and behaving like an infant whenever you don’t get your way. Those who propose that ‘fake news’ be eliminated may end being shocked to find that such a sweep eliminates their own platforms in a bitter dose of irony. Here’s some free advice: stop it, go home, you  lost.

Ross Powell is the Founder of Survival 401k, LLC. He graduated from the University of Texas and is a veteran Naval Officer.  Ross worked in banking and finance for almost 30 years including some of the largest banks and insurance companies in the country. His intimate knowledge of the inner workings of financial institutions helps him direct clients into Solo 401k products to take control of their retirement funds and escape the pitfalls many see in modern Wall Street centric retirement portfolios. He can be reached through  http://survival401k.com/.

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.