Thursday, April 25, 2013

"Boston Strong" propaganda downplays martial law

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I didn't hear the media refer to what happened in Boston, for one day while the manhunt was going on, as martial law; however if that isn't what it was, it was way too damn close. The traditional media showed a lot of cheering people when they caught the suspect and ended the lock down and they even ran a tape of one individual who seemed quite amused by the situation while she explained how she was initially shocked when the police pointed guns at her but understood why they did it and seemed to approve after the fact and laughed it off. there was no reporting in the traditional commercial media about anyone that was outraged by it but that doesn't mean that there aren't people outraged by it. Alex Jones posted "Shocking Footage: Americans Ordered Out Of Homes At Gunpoint By SWAT teams" by Steve Watson on his web site (more on Alex Jones and his conspiracies later in post); clearly implying if not showing that at least a few people in the area might not have been quite so pleased with the activities of their own government.

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Since then there has been an enormous amount of hype about the new "Boston Strong" campaign.

It may sound good to many but the problem is that is does absolutely nothing to help understand what happened and why; instead it is clearly designed to stir up emotions and get people to get excited about this event as if it was a sporting event. In fact they're mixing this hype up with sporting events instead of providing serious coverage for it. They made a big deal out of having hockey players give their jerseys to police officers and baseball players had a similar ceremony which does a lot to glorify both the police officers and the sports players but does absolutely nothing to address the issues.

Are they even looking at this as something they want to understand and solve?

They say they are of course but there activities don't seem to imply that they're serious at all. They have routinely been very selective about which so-called experts that they invite to speak before the majority of the public and the ones that they present to most people are rarely if ever the most credible people whose work will stand up to scrutiny in the long run assuming scrutiny is applied at all. One of the most important things that they routinely ignore is how early childhood abuse might have led to violence later in life, or in this case how it might have contributed to the "radicalization" of the bombing suspects. If some people relied on the commercial media for all their information they might get the impression that this is a magical event that happens when they talk to a charismatic religious leader. There might actually be something to this but it is almost certainly not the beginning of what they call the way they might be "radicalized."

I'm not saying that the police are responsible for this, for the most part, but the assumption that we should wait to the last minute before any disaster happens is clearly implied when few if any people take a close look at the long term contributing causes and at the last minute it at least appears as if drastic measures are necessary.

What they refer to a "radicalization" process almost certainly begins at an early age where children are taught violence from an early age and it might continue into adulthood through follow up indoctrination process and in some cases the truth, although not necessarily the version of the truth that the commercial media is presenting to the public. I went into how early child hood abuse has often led to additional violence in several posts in the past including Does child abuse and bullying lead to more violence? and Child abuse and bullying link in study long over due so I'll keep that brief. These blogs include an enormous amount of research to indicate that this is a major problem and that by reducing violence early in life it could go a long way to reduce crime and violence later in life as well and it is backed up by plenty of reliable sources that have been peer reviewed. This tends to escalate as an adult and people that are raised in an authoritarian manner are much more likely to be subject to indoctrination of one kind or another and act violently. Some of these people might be inclined to obey orders blindly but not necessarily from the people some of us might consider authorities. Many of them may chose charismatic cult leaders or other demagogues as leaders later or they might strike out violently; this may be more common if they have a cause that they think is worthwhile, whether it is or not.

Recent news has some out to indicate that they may have been motivated by the recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the war on terrorism. There has also been recent testimony to indicate that many of the people in Yemen and many other areas have become increasingly angry over the drone strikes which routinely kill innocent people. I have no idea if the bombers in Boston were also motivated by this but even if they weren't it could serve to "radicalize" many other people that are angry with the USA. There is no guarantee that terrorists arte always reacting for rational reasons, in fact they often aren't; however there is a possibility that the truth could support their reasons in some cases when the news is selectively reported differently to people here than they are to people in many other countries.

Many of the people from many other countries are fully aware of the fact that the USA has been participating in illegal wars for decades. They're much more inclined to acknowledge the fact that the USA has supported several coups suppressing democracy and also supported many terrorists when the leaders of the USA seem to think it suits their purposes. The list of these activities is long and it includes coups in Iran and Guatemala in the fifties, support of the Nicaraguan Contras and the Mujaheddin, which later partially turned into Al-Qaeda or the Taliban in the eighties and apparently the Chechen rebels as well which is near Dagestan, according to Chechen Terrorists and the Neocons. This may mean that in many cases the "radicalization" process may include news reports that are accurate; however these accurate news reports are routinely downplayed in the commercial media and by high profile politicians but they're not ignored by those that we are fighting.

This means that many of the most important facts that might be contributing to the terrorist threat aren't even being considered; while all the hype and emotional appeal is being used to make arguments to justify the look down of a city which was damn close to martial law for a brief while if not martial law, as well as the opportunity to reduce people rights including the right to to a trial a lawyer the Miranda warnings and more. John W. Whitehead elaborated more on it in the following excerpts from his article.

‘Boston Strong’: Marching in Lockstep With the Police State by John W. Whitehead

Caught up in the televised drama of a military-style manhunt for the suspects in the Boston Marathon explosion, most Americans fail to realize that the world around them has been suddenly and jarringly shifted off its axis, that axis being the U.S. Constitution.

For those like myself who have studied emerging police states, the sight of a city placed under martial law – its citizens under house arrest (officials used the Orwellian phrase “shelter in place” to describe the mandatory lockdown), military-style helicopters equipped with thermal imaging devices buzzing the skies, tanks and armored vehicles on the streets, and snipers perched on rooftops, while thousands of black-garbed police swarmed the streets and SWAT teams carried out house-to-house searches in search of two young and seemingly unlikely bombing suspects – leaves us in a growing state of unease.

Mind you, these are no longer warning signs of a steadily encroaching police state. The police state has arrived.

Equally unnerving is the ease with which Americans welcomed the city-wide lockdown, the routine invasion of their privacy, and the dismantling of every constitutional right intended to serve as a bulwark against government abuses. Watching it unfold, I couldn’t help but think of Nazi Field Marshal Hermann Goering’s remarks during the Nuremberg trials. As Goering noted:

"It is always a simple matter to drag people along whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country."

As the events in Boston have made clear, it does indeed work the same in every country. The same propaganda and police state tactics that worked for Adolf Hitler 80 years ago continue to be employed with great success in a post-9/11 America. ...... Complete article

This hype and excitement has been repeated by one politician and celebrity after another in the mainstream media including Elizabeth Warren, who has been portrayed as a "consumer advocate" and perhaps the greatest defender of the lower and middle class in a long time judging by the propaganda that rose suddenly that enabled her to win an election for the senate without a primary challenge or addressing many of the most important issues as I tried to explain in several posts including Elizabeth Warren is NOT a “consumer advocate!!” The past posts explain the details but the basic impression I have been getting from Elizabeth Warren is that she is better than many of the other politicians on a few of the issues that have been taken to extremes and she has been using them to grandstand and create a good image for herself but on many other issues she is catering to the same campaign contributors and political activists as the other party members. Her recent appearance on the Rachel Maddow show was no exception. She repeated the same hype that all the other politicians about how Boston is so strong that we will get over this without addressing any of the contributing causes. this may make many people feel better and it may stir up a lot of emotions to imply that anyone that isn't going along with the program is challenging how great we are but it does absolutely nothing to understand what is going on and prevent it from happening again.

It has become politically correct to call these bombers idiots, jerks or losers; but, whether they are idiots jerks or losers or not, it isn't politically correct to address the more import question about how to prevent this from happening again.

Another propaganda tactic that they've been using is to portray many people that disagree with the official version of events as wild conspiracy theorists. This is an old effort that routinely avoids the actual definitions of conspiracy and theory and focus on the stereo types of conspiracy theorists and attempts to present the irrational conspiracy theorists and the rational researchers in the same category and dismiss them all by association instead of sorting through the details. This effort often attempt to portray all these people rational and irrational alike as mentally ill or close minded.

The irony is if the official explanation is true it is a conspiracy.

That's right, if the official explanation is true it is a conspiracy between the Tsarnaev brothers and possibly other people that might have worked with them or "radicalized" them. A conspiracy is when two or more people secretly communicate or act in a manner that affects other people. This is what the Tsarnaev brothers are alleged to have done and it involved a conspiracy to bomb innocent people so the government and the commercial media are conspiracy theorists. Somehow we're supposed to believe that they're not irrational people that fit the stereo type of "conspiracy theorists." This is a standard routine that has been going on for decades. The same thing happened with the 9/11 bombings and Jim Marrs made the same argument in his book about it.

In Jim Marrs and for that matter Alex Jones case they often might be irrational conspiracy theorists in many cases but sometimes they both get things right, as well, that the government is trying to distract people from. Dismissing one group out of hand with addressing the details is highly irrational and unscientific although I must say that I am skeptical of a lot of their work and wouldn't prefer to use them as primary sources for most research into the subject. Recently Chris Hedges has appeared on the Alex Jones show which seems to imply that he might be open to some degree of scrutiny; and this is just as well since I think some of his ideas about climate change and gun control need scrutiny and people should be advised to avoid appeals to emotion; however that doesn't mean they should remain complacent.

Another thing that is worth considering is what Philip Zimbardo referred to as "the foot in the door" psychological tactic. As I explained in Philip Zimbardo, Lucifer Effect, Stanford Prison Experiment and Corruption or Bias in the American Psychological Association Philip Zimbardo has done research for the Office of Naval Research and based on some of the material that he has provided as well as research from Alfred McCoy I suspect he may have done research for the CIA as well. He has indicated that this is a commonly known tactic that once people accept small steps for minor deceptive obedience tactics they might be more inclined to accepts larger steps that lead to a larger con. The same would presumably go to accepting a police state with martial law. I don't really expect that this will come to that but they have already taken more steps than I would have previously expected so I don't completely rule it out anymore. Whether this is inclined to happen or not it would be helpful to recognize the propaganda tactics that might lead to it and prevent it before it gets any farther. If people recognize it and discuss it then nothing happens and people say "see there was never anything to worry about," then it will have served it's purpose even if we never know whether or not educating people about propaganda was what prevented martial law.

In many cases many of the most important facts aren't part of a conspiracy by it's, strictest definition, because they aren't completely secret. Many of the details about the contributing causes of this are public knowledge; however they aren't presented as widely as the propaganda from the government, or in many cases the irrational conspiracy theories from people that might be considered less rational. This leads to a situation where both the irrational conspiracy theorists and the government are playing into each others hands because in many cases both sides are ignoring inconvenient facts and both are making appeals to emotion to get people to believe them without scrutiny.

The most effective way to avoid falling for either of the deceptive tactics involves sorting through the details more effectively; or at least relying on researchers that do a better job sorting through the details and doing a minimal review of those researchers. As the following excerpt indicates George Carlin might have agreed although he isn't the most thorough researcher that I would recommend. To the best of my knowledge Mike Barnacle didn't plagiarized these excerpts.

And the war got good ratings too, didn't it? Got good ratings. Well, we like war. We like war, we are war like people. We like war, because we are good at it. You know why we are good at it? Because we did a lot of practice. ......

Can't built a decent car, can't make a TV set or VCR where the fuck. Got no steel industry left, can't educate our young people can't get health care for our old people, but we can bomb the shit out of your country alright?! ......

You probably noticed that I don't feel about that war the way we were told, we were supposed to feel about that war, the way we were ordered and instructed by the USA government to feel about that war. You see, I tell you, my mind does not work that way. I got this real moron thing I do, its called thinking and I am not a very good American, because I like to form my own opinions! I don't just roll over when I am told to. ......

And I don't take very seriously the media or the press in this country who in the case of the Persian Gulf war were nothing more than unpaid employees of the Department of Defense and who most of the time, most of the time function as kind of unofficial public relations agency for the US government. So I don't listen to them, I don't really believe in my country and I got to tell you folks, I don't get all choked up about yellow ribbons and American flags. ......

That is the way the ruling class operates in any society. They try to divide the rest of the people. They keep the lower and the middle classes fighting with each other, so that they the rich can run off with all the fucking money. Fairly simple thing, happens to work. Complete article

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The following are some web pages that may provide some additional information that might help reduce violence even though they may not address this specific incident.

American Empire Project provides extensive information about the history of US activities that have been under-reported by the traditional commercial media.

“The Roots of Violence are NOT Unknown” and accompanying articles that explain how early childhood abuse leads to more violence later in life by Alice Miller.

Home page for Barbara Coloroso, an internationally recognized speaker and author in the areas of parenting, teaching, school discipline, non-violent conflict resolution and reconciliatory justice.

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