Miles Report No. 24
Controlling the message, rewriting the narrative.
“Propaganda should be popular, not intellectually pleasing. It is not the task of propaganda to discover intellectual truths.”
“It would not be impossible to prove with sufficient repetition and a psychological understanding of the people concerned that a square is in fact a circle. They are mere words, and words can be molded until they clothe ideas and disguise.”
“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.”
I’ll let you consider from whom these quotes originate, but they seem to fit the efforts of the current Harper government to establish control over the media, over science, over education, over access to information, in order to create their own fundamentalist/militaristic mythology of Canada.
Terror and Islamicism
This is one of the greatest mythologies of our time. A government that seeks control also looks for an external enemy to which the fears and angst of the population can be directed safely. The reason Harper does not want to explore the roots and causes of alienation leading towards terrorism, but would rather simply punish it, is that the roots of terror come from the western countries.
Since the break-up of the Ottoman empire, the Middle East has been under constant attack, invasion, occupation, harassment from Britain, France, and the U.S., at different times with differing amounts of power. It was the illustrious Winston Churchill, whom the Harper Conservatives are fond of quoting, who said, “I do not understand this sqeamishness about the use of gas. I am strongly in favour of using poison gas against uncivilised tribes,” in relation to subduing the Iraqis and Kurds in the early 1920s.
It was the British and U.S. MI/CIA that overthrew the democratically elected Mossadegh government of Iran in 1953, put in place the Shah and his SAVAK secret police, with the followup that is Iran today. France and Britain sided with Israel against Egypt in 1956 in order to regain control of the Suez canal and to re-establish British control of Egypt. At that time the U.S. put a stop to it, but that is the only time the U.S. ever limited Israeli actions.
It was the U.S. that supported with both money and supplies the Afghanistan mujahideen against the Soviet incursion. Those “freedom fighters” of Ronald Reagan became the “terrorists” of George Bush. The U.S. supported Hussein in Iraq during the Iran/Iraq war and turned a blind eye towards Hussein’s use of chemical weapons against the Kurds as it was convenient to do so at the time. There are many, many other incidents and actions that would fill many volumes.
Today, the U.S. and Canada support probably the most authoritarian tribal monarchies in the world of Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE, et al. It is not the Muslims they are afraid of, it is losing control of the oil and losing the mythological narrative of the Israelis that support their fundamentalist Christian views that they fear.
CBC, National Library, National Archives, government scientists, history education
When the above mentioned items are linked together - the controlling of the CBC’s financial lines, the shuttering of section of the Nation Library and Archives (and the withdrawal of information concerning the First Nations), the muzzle put on government scientists, indeed any government employee, the new “review” of education in Canada - while they all may seem innocent in isolation, they all follow the curve toward the totalitarian curve of controlling the message, creating a new mythos of Canada that fit’s the Harper Conservative funadamentalist/militarist view of the world.
There is no need to go into each individually. Each one could be - and are - rationalized away in fairly simplistic monetary terms, but collectively amount to placing limits on access to information leading towards the creation of a Harperite Conservative mythos about Canada.
Of course if one is to argue economics, the Harper Conservatives are full of double speak there as well. The current debacle over the ridiculous expense of the ship designs for our northern waters demonstrates a strong lack of fiscal discipline. And just last week one of the Conservative minions still argued that the cost of the F-35s remained at $9 billion. A nice repetitive lie that many of their followers will parrot after them. And what of the $3.1 billion missing/unaccounted funds from the original anti-terror efforts after 9/11? Well, if they can’t be accounted for the best bet of course is to change accounting methods…perfect….
Finally, attack ads
I love these. The more the Harper Conservatives attack and look like petty whiners the more they reveal the true nature of their own philosophy, which is power and control at any cost. Keep up the good effort!