DISSILLUSIONS addresses contentious issues with opinions that you may find challenging. Reader discretion is advised.
EXPLOITING PITY FOR MILITARY FAMILIES
Noam Chomsky in Media Control: The Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda: “… the point of public relations slogans like “Support Our Troops” is that they don’t mean anything […] that’s the whole point of good propaganda. You want to create a slogan that nobody is going to be against and I suppose everybody will be for, because nobody knows what it means, because it doesn’t mean anything. But its crucial value is that it diverts your attention from a question that does mean something: “Do you support our policy?” And that’s the one you’re not allowed to talk about.”
Chomsky’s right: to put it bluntly, “Support our troops” is the government’s chicken-shit way of getting us to say “My country, right or wrong!”, a sentiment that has motivated countless young men to die in wars created by corrupt and cynical leaders. Contemporary media stories that feature young wives and families waiting tearfully for husbands and fathers to return from invasions attempt to gain political support by tugging audience heart strings while ignoring political issues. “Supporting” our troops with an appropriate bumper sticker allows people to avoid thinking about why the Canadian government sends thousands of armed killers to Third World countries.
Close examination of Canadian military activity in Afghanistan reveals that Canadian troops weren’t handing out bread and cold cuts to starving locals, they were invading (read “murdering”) their way into a country where they had no right to be – thats why 158 Canadians have died there – killed by Afghanis who logically resist invasion by foreigners. The invading Canadian troops are volunteers who choose to enter theaters of war, regardless of our government’s political motives in deploying them. These young Canadian men are not conscripts: they CHOOSE to submit themselves to military discipline and to kill on demand. Would you do this? Why would anyone do this?
The main reason is poverty and unemployment: government-created poverty and its attendant propaganda are prime ingredients in building a “volunteer” army. Uncritical nationalism, misogyny, lack of education, unquestioning loyalty to their “betters,” love of the British Royal Family, racism and/or religious insanity all come in very handy. These are the issues which the slogan “Support Our Troops” encourages us to ignore.
If you really want to support our troops, build a movement that opposes poverty, nationalism, racism, the monarchy, religion, and rapacious invasions of third world countries. A better world is possible.
A THEORY ABOUT CONSPIRACY THEORIES
“Conspiracy Theory”: Foundations of a Weaponized Term | Global Research http://www.globalresearch.ca
“Since the 1960s the label has become a disciplinary device that has been overwhelmingly effective in defining certain events off limits to inquiry or debate. Especially in the United States raising legitimate questions about dubious official narratives destined to inform public opinion (and thereby public policy) is a major thought crime that must be cauterized from the public psyche at all costs.”
Truth is often obscured in the convoluted world of fake and real opposition to capitalism’s crimes against humanity. The above quote is from an article by Prof. James H. Tracy whose blog (http://memoryholeblog.com) seems to have many right-wing admirers. However, one reader makes the point that “…the ability of the wealthpower(sic) ones (i.e. the guilty perpetrators of, say, political assassinations or terrorist acts – DW) … to conceal their true identities and deeds IS ALWAYS going to exceed YOUR ability to discover and expose their true identities and deeds.” Unfortunately, he may be right. Trying to get at the truth about JFK or 911 may be as futile as arguing about the existence of God.
However, the value of conspiracy theorizing lies in its recognition that the mainstream media’s vision of reality is comprised of – not a haphazard collection of facts presented for our enlightenment, but – a carefully-orchestrated interpretation of events that may or may not be real. History provides numerous examples. The right mystifies the perpetrators (“Masons, Jews, One World Government, Zionists, the Illuminati”) whereas the left has a more prosaic view: the capitalist class and their toads. Disseminators of the “Masons/Illuminati/Jewish Bankers/Reptilian Aliens” explanation seek to mold people’s natural skepticism about the true nature of world events to the further uses of capital – in this case by disorientation and mystification. For a breath of fresh air, and indications of what kind of forces really lie behind terror and assassination, take a look at a socialist program: it’s based on a set of clear demands designed to meet the material needs of working people. There’s no mention of Masons, UFOs, Illuminati, etc. because socialists recognize that there’s only one conspiracy that matters: class rule.
HAS ANYTHING CHANGED SINCE 1880?
(QUOTE)”There is no such thing as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job.
“The business of the journalist is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.”
– John Swinton (ex-chief editor of The New York Times), c. 1880.