The rank and file are usually much more primitive than we imagine. Propaganda must therefore always be essentially simple and repetitious. The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly… it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.
– Joseph Goebbels Nazi Propaganda Minister.
How fortunate for governments that the people they administer don’t think.
– Adolf Hitler
Take it from Goebbels and Hitler, true experts on mass-brainwashing. And the U.S. government, particularly the CIA, has learned a great deal from the Nazis. The Nazis in turn learned a great deal from American corporate advertising techniques and the American mass-media. The American corporate mass-media is the world’s greatest practitioner of what its student Goebbels preached: repeating simple-minded lies over and over for months and years, until the lies take on a life of their own and all the American sheeple repeat them unthinkingly as commonly accepted ‘facts’.
“So long as they continued to work and breed, their other activities were without importance. Left to themselves, like cattle turned loose upon the plains of Argentina, they had reverted to a style of life that appeared to be natural to them, a sort of ancestral pattern. They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve, they passed through a brief blossoming period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died, for the most part, at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer, and, above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds. To keep them in control was not difficult.” – George Orwell, 1984
The fact is that mass media, especially through television, is a source not actively or critically attended to. A researcher named Herbert Krugman, who later became manager of public-opinion research at General Electric, decided to try to discover what goes on physiologically in the brain of a person watching TV. He elicited the co-operation of a twenty-two-year-old secretary and taped a single electrode to the back of her head. The wire from this electrode connected to a computer.
Flicking on the TV, Krugman began monitoring the brain-waves of the subject What he found through repeated trials was that within about thirty seconds, the brain-waves switched from predominantly beta waves, indicating alert and conscious attention, to predominantly alpha waves, indicating an unfocused, receptive lack of attention: the state of aimless fantasy and daydreaming below the threshold of consciousness. When Krugman’s subject turned to reading through a magazine, beta waves reappeared, indicating that conscious and alert attentiveness had replaced the daydreaming state.
What surprised Krugman, who had set out to test the effect of TV-viewing on the mind, was how rapidly the alpha-state emerged. Further research revealed that the brain’s left hemisphere, which processes information logically and analytically, tunes out while the person is watching TV. This tuning-out allows the right hemisphere of the brain, which processes information emotionally and noncritically, to function unimpeded. It appears, wrote Krugman, “that the mode of response to television is more or less constant and very different from the response to print. That is, the basic electrical response of the brain is clearly related to the medium. Television is a communication medium that effortlessly transmits huge quantities of information not thought about at the time of exposure.”
The key phrase in Krugman’s findings was that TV transmits information not thought about at the time of exposure. As Herbert Krugman noted, we do not consciously or rationally attend to the material resonating with our unconscious depths at the time of transmission. Later, however, when we encounter a store display, or a real-life situation, or a name on a ballot that conjures up our television experience of the candidate, a wealth of associations is triggered.
A person’s recall of this information is evoked by the person or product itself, interacting with the stored data in their brain. Just as in Julian Jaynes’s ancient cultures, where the internally heard speech of the gods was prompted by props like the corpse of a chieftain or a statue, so, too, our internalized media echoes are triggered by products, props, or situations in the environment.
As real-life experience is increasingly replaced by the mediated ‘experience’, it becomes easy for politicians and market-researchers of all sorts to rely on a base of mediated mass experience that can be evoked by appropriate triggers. The TV ‘world’ becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: the mass mind takes shape, its participants acting according to media-derived impulses and believing them to be their own personal volition arising out of their own desires and needs. In such a situation, whoever controls the screen controls the future, the past, and the present.
Women, for instance, are carefully trained by media to view themselves as inadequate. They are taught that other women, through the purchases of clothes, cosmetics, food, vocations, avocations, education, etc., are more desirable and feminine than themselves. Her need to constantly reverify her value when compared with this false image through the purchase of merchandise becomes an overwhelming preoccupation, profitable for the merchandisers, but potentially disastrous for the individual. Thus fear, much like all types of emotion, makes people highly vulnerable to subliminal management and control technology. Through repeated, subliminal appeals and reinforcements of these fears, people can be induced into buying, and thinking, almost anything.
The brainwashing of Americans is too effective a political ploy for the puppetmasters to suddenly let the truth get in the way. The pattern is clear: Say what you want people to believe for the front page and on TV(Such as Iraq’s WMD’s), then whisper a halfhearted correction or apology that slips under the radar. It is really quite ingenious in its cynical effectiveness, and American’s only have themselves to blame for being a victim of it.