Sunday, May 31, 2020

Walter Lippmann explains why journalists apply the label of protesters to rioters

Journalism today likes to provoke us, do you feel provoked? In the blueprint for modern journalism, "Public Opinion", Lippmann wrote on Page 355 the following:

It is a problem of provoking feeling in the reader, of inducing him to feel a sense of personal identification with the stories he is reading. News which does not offer this opportunity to introduce oneself into the struggle which it depicts cannot appeal to a wide audience. The audience must participate in the news, much as it participates in the drama, by personal identification. Just as everyone holds his breath when the heroine is in danger, as he helps Babe Ruth swing his bat, so in subtler form the reader enters into the news. In order that he shall enter he must find a familiar foothold in the story, and this is supplied to him by the use of stereotypes. They tell him that if an association of plumbers is called a "combine" it is appropriate to develop his hostility; if it is called a "group of leading business men" the cue is for a favorable reaction.

It is in a combination of these elements that the power to create opinion resides. Editorials reinforce.

Feeling provoked? You should feel that way, provoking you is the point. But to what end?

Walter Lippmann, the Father of Modern Journalism, is informing the reader that the journalist has leisure here to pick and choose whatever key word they prefer, based on whatever group that they the journalist prefers. Since the problem that needs to be resolved is that you are unprovoked, key words will be employed in the news to provoke you. In this instance, let's compare two different nationwide movements and compare the provocative keywords.

1) Movement #1 is entirely peaceful, and is seeking an end to coronavirus lockdowns so that they can get back to living their lives and feeding their children. Oh, and many times they show up to their protest with their guns. Really big guns.

2) Movement #2 is burning down Autozones, looting Target stores, and vandalizing and destroying private property.

So, which one are the protesters or not? According to most journalists, the answer would be that the first group are violent racists and nazis, even if they haven't actually hurt anybody, and even if the only nazi symbols present are those being used to describe other people, well there was a nazi symbol at one of the rallies anyways so that proves that they were nazis.

In Lippmann's day, these people burning down whatever stores would be called a "group of leading businessmen", because the journalist wants to cue you to have a favorable reaction. The journalists support this movement, and will do anything to make sure you support it too.

Meanwhile Lippmann would call the peaceful conservative protesters a combine, because the journalists really hate guns, and so therefore the media wants everybody to hate you as much as the media hates you. But because this is 2020 and the word "combine" does not have the power it would have had during the trust-busting days, the constitutional word of "protesters" is given to the looters in group #2, and the hostility word of "racists" is weaponized toward peaceful group #1. Now everybody is provoked. Thus, the problem has been solved. You have been provoked, and you have now been forced to have an opinion(forced by the journalists) about the two groups whether you like it or not.

That's the blueprint. That's how the machine works. It's been this way now for about 100 years.

1 comment:

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