How Modern Propaganda Works

How Modern Propaganda Works, by Steve Sailer.

The Narrative is pushed less by printing fake news or by completely censoring true news than by the power of the prestige press to pick out ideologically convenient items from the vast surfeit of events and declare them the news about which we are all supposed to have a “conversation.”

Did, say, a Catholic schoolboy “smirk” at a “tribal elder”?

Now, that’s national news!

In contrast, in the wake of the vaunted Black Lives Matter protests in Ferguson, did four Teens of Color in St. Louis, shouting “Kill the white people,” hammer a white man to death?

Why are you interested in a local police blotter detail?

And if there is a lot of news for powerful interests to pick and choose amongst, there’s even more history.

Which anniversaries are treated as late-breaking news and which are seen as mere dusty arcana is another exercise in Narrative supremacy?

Consider an example of a dog that has barely been allowed to bark: A number of milestones in Christendom’s heroic struggle to stamp out Islamic slave raiding, such as Thomas Jefferson dispatching the U.S. Marines to “the shores of Tripoli” in 1804 and the Royal Navy freeing 3,000 European slaves from Algiers in 1816, have passed quietly in this century with only minimal 200th-anniversary media commemorations.

“If there is a lot of news for powerful interests to pick and choose amongst, there’s even more history.”

Calling attention to the West’s long, ultimately successful struggle against Muslim slaving is not encouraged because it might be conducive to Islamophobia, which, as the word explains, is bad. On the other hand, obsessing over white American slaving is good, because if it were at all bad then there would exist a word for it ending in “-phobia.” But there doesn’t, so how can you even mention it?

Of course, the NY Times’ trope that America’s “true founding” was the arrival of blacks in 1619 contradicts another fashionable bit of hype: that America is a Nation of Immigrants instituted by the huddled masses of wretched refuse on Ellis Island.

As we’ve all been instructed in recent decades, immigrants should be “at the very center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are,” much more important than all those boring settlers, founding fathers, frontiersmen, and cowboys, even if, technically speaking, they might have arrived earlier.

But do the descendants of Ellis Island immigrants possess bragging rights over the descendants of slaves?

And do blacks who aren’t the descendants of slaves, such as President Obama, also get Intersectional bonus points from the 1619 Story Line even though their ancestors sold African-Americans into slavery?

None of these conundrums are useful for the fraught unity of the Democratic Party in 2020; so don’t expect them to be brought up terribly often. It’s much more politically profitable for the Coalition of the Fringes to merely lambaste core Americans for the sins of their forefathers.

It’s not what they say that is wrong, so much as what they leave out and won’t tell you.

Keep this up long enough, and people — catching on to the general theme — believe the very opposite of what is true.

The goal of the modern propagandists is to get you to believe something that isn’t true, without ever saying anything that is technically false. No, who us??! We never said that.