Tag Archives: Propaganda

Losing the War?

I read a lot of RKBA news. Seriously: A lot. (And that matters, as you’ll see.)

One theme that started popping up last week is the idea that RKBA advocates are somehow losing the culture war.

If you read the national news (or watch television, or get your news from mainstream web sites), that’s an easy conclusion to reach. So long as you don’t look too closely.

As I said, I read a lot of news. I must, to put together the weekly TZP news summary. Besides my casual browsing, I use several pre-built news searches on a variety of terms. The terms were selected to produce headlines from various points of view.

Probably 90% of the actual results reflect only one point of view; that RKBA is losing. You see it in “news” reports and Letters to the Editor (LtE) alike. You see it in polls and surveys.

And it’s BS.

Not to defend the NRA, but did you see the “news” story “Lawyer who worked for NRA said to have had concerns about group’s Russia ties”? So the NRA’s lawyer is worried about collusion?

Nope: Mitchell told McClatchy in an email that any suggestion she has concerns about the NRA’s Russia connections is a “complete fabrication.” But to learn that, you have to get past the false headline and two paragraphs of innuendo.

Or this oldie-butgoodie bullshit: “The NRA has blocked gun violence research for 20 years. Let’s end its stranglehold on science.” Absolutely factually wrong headline. Folks who routinely rely on the LA Times to inform them will have no basis to understand that the CDC was stopped from advocating and promoting gun control, and the funding they “lost” was the money they’d diverted from research, thus proving they didn’t need it. But try writing an LtE to correct that lie.

I’ve been writing LtEs on firearms-related topics for decades. Offhand, I can only recall two being published. One was a recent letter to the Texas Wilson County News in which I congratulated the publisher for getting facts right.

I have to go back to the mid-1990s for the only other published LtE: It ran in the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch. I opened to the Op/Ed page and found they’d run two letters side by side, to reflect “both sides” of the discussion. The pro-RKBA letter was… sad. An embarrassment to RKBA. Poor grammar, unfortunate word choices, incorrect statistics. You name it, that guy got it wrong, and I was pissed because I’d sent a letter covering everything that clown had, but I got it right. But I kept reading.

And found that crappy excuse for a pro-RKBA letter over my own name. They edited it to make pro-Second Amendment types look like idiots. They edited it so heavily — changing even facts — that I couldn’t recognize it as my own. I had to dig out my personal file copy and match paragraph to published paragraph to see that they’d followed my sequence. Sort of.

I protested. Nothing.

I threatened. Nothing.

I recently wrote another LtE to a local paper, objecting to falsehoods in another letter. They refused to publish it. The publisher claimed she could “correct” the falsehoods by printing a “correction” elsewhere.

She didn’t.

We are not losing the war. Yet. But we have lost the media battle. The editorial gatekeepers will not let our truly representative views be seen.

Polls/surveys? Same thing. Gallup claims “Americans Widely Support Tighter Regulations on Gun Sales”. To hear them tell it, 96% of Americans want universal background checks; 95% of gun owners. 75% of all Americans want a 30 day waiting period on all firearms purchases.

You couldn’t get 96% of all Americans to decide on vanilla ice cream over frozen feces, if only because of the jokers answering the phones. Certainly no state has ever come within 30 points of that figure in real elections or referendums.

So how do they get those numbers? Sometimes it’s through careful question selection, but that’s a crude technique, mostly abused by outright push-polls. The pro’s trick is weighting. That’s where you expect a bias in answers due to statistical clumping in the random selection of respondents, so you adjust the numbers to compensate. Real statisticians will do that for specific reasons.

(And what happens with “unscientific” Internet surveys; the ones where respondents aren’t carefully selected and “weighted”? Pretty much the exact opposite. The truth is somewhere in between.)

But if a pollster finds he’s getting too many pro-RKBA answers, out of proportion to the blue-city urban responses, and has to adjust…

Adjusting is exactly the wrong response. That’s deciding what the “right” result is before starting and faking the results to match preconceptions. If your “random” respondent selection was properly random, then the respondents should average out to represent — proportional to population — America. No need to “weight.” And to be sure, you randomly select another pool of respondents and run a second survey with exactly the same questions. Think of it as reproducing experimental results in real science.

Instead, we get nonsensical, proven-wrong (UNH survey in NH claimed 94% of residents wanted universal PPYI; when the Dems tried, they were voted out by large margins) 96% percent propaganda. (And kudos to the Crime Prevention Research Center for trying to conducted accurate surveys and analysis; statistics is inherently imprecise, so errors occur, but they try.)

The media gatekeepers have won the battle to inform the uninformed. They will not allow a proper defense of human/civil rights, an understanding of existing laws, or what already failed. The faked surveys become believable because, “Well, I never see anyone saying different in the news.” Convenient, that.

We have sites like this, and other bloggers and dedicated firearms sites rarely seen by those who don’t already share our interest. A few allies at services like Breitbart. Inconsistent, occasional support from Fox. The occasional local paper with severely limited circulation. If anyone can even find them, what with Google censoring bad-think search results, even shopping searches.

Social media? Are you still on anti-gun Facebook?

Big media has control. By blocking almost all positive discussion of firearms-related human/civil rights, they make appear there are none. Honest gun owners can be demonized, making it that much more likely that the deliberately ill-informed will support that much more erosion of rights. After all, only handful of radicals want those rights… they’re told, unaware of what they aren’t told.

At best, my writing here at The Zelman Partisans is preaching to the choir. More like shouting into an echo chamber.

Or a void.

Frankly, I’ve stared too long into the abyss. It’s a staredown.

But the choir doesn’t want me to say it’s hopeless. You want answers. Preferably quick, easy answers.

Sorry to disappoint.

Short of brainwashing Soros et al into channeling mass quantities of money into fact-based, unbiased, professional — as opposed to the current crop of “journalists” who decry their innocence in false reporting by exclaiming, “But it’s my job to report what [insert authority figure] said. It isn’t my place to question them.” — reporting, and the advertising necessary to make people aware of the news source, the media battle will lead to the culture loss already being decried.

The NRA can’t do it. They’re already the designated demon to the ignorant, and traitors to informed gun owners.

I can’t do it. I’m struggling to pay bills, without running up expenses chasing down leads or paying for honest surveys, or building a high traffic web site to pass that info along. Education like this is part of what The Zelman Partisans was created to do, but still lacks the resources to reach far enough.

Gun Owners of America can’t do it. They’re already reaching as far as they can, while pushing pro-rights legislation and law suits.

55,000,000 to 120,000,000 gun owners, and we can’t cough up a buck a piece per year to create a loud enough voice of truth. Hell, I’d settle for enough to buy an editor or two in major markets, the way the victim disarmament side has done.


Carl is an unpaid TZP volunteer. If you found this post useful, please consider dropping something in his tip jar. He could seriously use the money, what with truck repairs and bills.

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So How Could This Happen?

As I look at the massive amount of “change” our country has endured since I was a child, I’m not feeling a lot of “hope”. I had long wondered how our country had gone from one of fierce independence, strong work ethic and Judeo-Chrisitian values to one where living on the dole is viewed as an entitlement to some people, and it comes with a free obola-phone. The fierce independence and looking after yourself and your family has become “let the government do it”,  “wait for the police” and “there ought to be a law”. We are to have been a country ruled by law, not mobs. And we have moved so far away from that. “How could this happen?” A friend of mine on Facebook asked that the other day. This column was already percolating in my brain when he did. I may have some insight into it.

You know the old saying there is nothing really new under the sun? Well, many of the things we see in America now have been done before, and succeeded brilliantly for those that implemented the policies.

Let’s do a little compare and contrast, shall we?

There is a traveling exhibit from the Midwest Center for Holocaust Education called “nazi Propaganda”. No, I didn’t mean to capitalize nazi. There was an exhibit of artifacts and a lecture series that explored different aspects of the Propaganda.

“Propaganda is a truly terrible weapon in the hands of an expert”~~adolph hitler 1924
hitler had one of the best at propaganda Joseph Gerbils (Goebbels, yes, I enjoyed doing that too), who said that “Any man who still has a residue of honor will be very careful not to become a journalist”. That’s pretty rich coming from a one time journalist.

When hitler came to power in 1933, Germany had a very well developed communications system. There were 4,700 daily and weekly newspapers, a total circulation of 25 million. Of these 81%  were locally owned, although there were some national ones that had even attained international recognition. When the nazis came to power in 1933, they owned less than 3% of the 4,700 papers. Through the elimination of the multi-party system the nazis gained control of the newspapers that had been run by those parties. The nazis used the press and radio to create fears of a communist uprising and then the populace was willing enough to accept limits and the curtailing of their liberties.

The nazis had a great ally in Julius Streicher who produced Der Strumer, a virulently antisemitic “newspaper” and I use that term loosely here. Mostly it ran articles on how the Jews were to blame for everything wrong, and they wanted to start a war while the rest of the world wanted peace. They ran horrible cartoons by “Fips” designed to isolate and dehumanize Jews. It ran from 1923 to 1945 and during the Weimer Republic was the receipient of many lawsuits by politicians and Jewish groups. It did not stop them though, and when hitler came along, it thrived.  The nazi regeime also embraced the new technology of radio and television. They already had a thriving movie culture. With the creation of the people’s radio, hitler’s speeches could be broadcast everywhere, factories, homes and even the streets, and they were. The cheap mass produced radios had very few stations available on the dial, quite the shocker that, eh?

The German propaganda machine was also at work in the US and Britain believe it or not. In many news stories of the time the writing was done in such a was as to create fear among Americans and the British and leave them wanting to just get it over with and give in. Interestingly to me anyway, most of these stores came from the AP. Germany also forbid it’s citizens from getting any news from sources outside of Germany. But with the great radio shows on, why would they want to? I mean who could turn down hitler speeches and home making tips all in one broadcast?  Besides, listening to the BBC was considered very treasonous, and punishable by prison time.

Propaganda was used to sell the majority who hadn’t voted for hitler (was it racist back then to demand voter ID?) that there would be this national community, it’s just that a few people wouldn’t be part of it. Germans by in large it seems, ate that National Community Hope & Change stuff up. It was necessary to convince them not to intervene when they saw their neighbors of many years being hauled off and their belongings taken away. The ghettos were posted with signs warning of health dangers, that was meant to discourage non-Jews from entering and seeing conditions for themselves. With the lack of sanitation, people starving and lack of medical care, that was somewhat true, but not why the nazis posted the ghettos. Films were staged in the ghettos to show the German people that the Jews bred and carried diseases. The goal with that would be to decrease any sympathy the Christians might have felt and any desire to help the Jews. The Jews were also portrayed as not caring about anyone but themselves. Films were also staged to convince the world that the Jews were being treated very humanely, and just in the camps for “re-education” to the nazi way of the thinking and life. Nothing to see here folks, move along.

Part of the goal of the propaganda was not so much to enlist ordinary Germans in killing the Jews, but to convince them not to intervene on the Jews behalf. After all, they weren’t REALLY human were they?

So, why is this relevant today? People would recognize the dangerous conditions and do something about it before it ever got this far again, right?  No set of Americans would sit idly by while one segment of the population was marginalized and attacked by leadership would they?

How about people who believe the Constitution should remain the law of the land, and not ruling by pen and cell phone?

Would the government ever paint such people as “the enemy”?

http://www.theblogmocracy.com/2012/08/08/us-army-using-tea-party-insurrection-scenario-to-train-officers/

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/10/23/does-army-consider-christians-tea-party-terror-threat/

http://sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com/2012/08/bringing-war-back-home-full-spectrum.html

Would the government ever single out those people and use the force of the government to go after them?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2711039/Emails-IRS-official-Lois-Lerner-called-conservatives-crazies-holes-Eric-Holder-gets-new-pressure-investigate.html

http://www.commdiginews.com/politics-2/erev-rosh-hashanah-lois-lerner-degrades-conservatives-now-judaism-26594/

Remember all the antisemitic cartoons? Some of these appeared in newspapers, some were made up by readers.

http://lumberjocks.com/topics/34254

The Media Research Center put together a lovely list of some of the worst attacks by the mainstream “media” on ordinary American Citizen. Curiously, the “media” was very supportive of Occupy Wallstreet.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/mike-ciandella/2014/02/27/5-years-after-7-worst-media-attacks-tea-party

What happens when a reporter actually tries to do the job, and report on Government and investigate stories? Um, doesn’t turn out well.

http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/102714-723693-former-cbs-news-reporter-blows-whistle-on-pro-obama-bias.htm?p=full

So, while in Germany many of the newspapers MAY have been forced to regurgitate the party poop, in America it seems we see this kind of reporting, not because of being forced into it, but because the media itself is on board with the ideology of the current regime.

Anyone remember Candy Crowley from CNN a “moderator” (chuckle, chuckle, snort) helping the President out during the debate against Mitt Romney? Or who can forget the classic of CNN making it appear a semi-automatic rifle is a automatic by the way they talked during the “report”.
Speaking of ideology, when the media constantly calls a semi-automatic rifle an “assault rifle” and report on someone shot breaking into a house as a “gun shot victim” because the home owner shot him? Does that not seem to be allowing their ideology to drive the story, to influence people that haven’t a clue about guns? To convince people that the ability to defend themselves and their families from any kind of a threat is not something they should want.

Nice blog post about CNN and guns.

http://dustinsgunblog.blogspot.com/2007/11/cnn-lies-fakes-story-once-again.html

And a great video to show anyone who doesn’t understand about a semi-automatic and fully automatic.

If you want to compare how the obama infatuated press handles a story think about what you are hearing now that there was a Republican landslide on Tuesday. The media is marginalizing that, saying the people want Republicans to work with obama. The British press presented the story a bit differently.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2822484/WHAT-LANDSLIDE-Obama-threatens-vetoes-executive-orders-Americans-reject-giving-Republicans-historic-gains-Congress.html#ixzz3IIYedBh1

As did the Candadian http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/67371

I discovered the first time I went to Ireland and listened to the news on the radio as I was driving that the way I heard stories on the radio in Ireland was vastly different than the way they were presented at home.

Why would the media do this? Lie to citizens, target certain individuals (think Sarah Palin or Phil Robertson) certain businesses (Chik-fil-A or Hobby Lobby) try to isolate them, polarize and demonize them?

Some pretty good answers can be found in the film Grinding Down America. You can watch it on YouTube, but you have to find the different sections. Or, if you don’t mind the Spanish subtitles, the movie is in English, and it is well worth watching.

So, my first villain in “How could this happen”, is the media. And unlike Germany, the mainstream media in America is part of the problem, not the watchdog.

I mean seriously, if they can’t even report a story involving a gun correct AFTER it has happened, why do we even listen to them give a weather FORECAST?

Der Sturmer

Just create the indifference
Just create the indifference
Allow none to show sympathy
Allow none to show sympathy

 

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