Why This Blog?

The aim of this blog is to fit into the blogosphere like the bracingly tart taste of yogurt fits between the boringly bland and the unspeakably vile.

All comments will be answered if their author provides contact info.


I have no sponsoring group(s) or agencies, and I owe no allegiance to any candidate or group.

(C) Copyright 2012 DenRita Enterprises

Monday, October 29, 2012

What propagandists target 

Now that we've uncovered some of the Propaganda Techniques used in the Costa Mesa election, let’s address what weakness(es) the propagandist is targeting. (Which weakness besides laziness, that is – too lazy to read, research, or think.)

What is the propagandist aiming at in Costa Mesa?. An authority named Braiker said manipulators (and in our case, propagandists) exploit the following vulnerabilities that may exist in victims:


 "Disease to please" is an "addiction” to earning the approval and acceptance of others, or desperate to be part of the group. An example is someone joining CM4RG because some of their friends belong.

Emotophobia (fear of negative emotion) – those who change views when an aggressive person yells at them or threatens them. An example would be City Council visitors who abandon the chambers when large men in uniform stalk about scowling. They decide they no longer want to know how the Council debates an issue important to them -- because threatening men arouse negative emotion.

Blurry sense of identity (I’m in the union and the union supports this so I must support it too.)

Low self-reliance (Those guys in Sacramento must know what they’re doing so I’ll support them.)

External locus of control (believes outside forces, such as Council members, instead of personal effort, determine life success)

Another perspective on vulnerabilities

Another expert who studies manipulation said manipulators exploit the following vulnerabilities:

Naïveté - victim finds it too hard to accept the idea that some people are cunning, devious and ruthless. We’ve seen examples of this in folks who believe their union altruistically looks out for their personal interests. In reality, Big Unions have evolved into large, self-perpetuating businesses.

Emotional dependency - victim has a submissive or dependent personality. The more emotionally dependent the victim is, the more vulnerable he or she is to being exploited and manipulated.

Manipulators generally take the time to scope out the characteristics and vulnerabilities of their victim. Propaganda experts, for example, conduct studies and polls and carefully research opinion and personality characteristics before they design their mailers.

And a third expert says

According to yet another expert, Kantor, the too dependent, too immature, and too naïve are targets.

What do they see here

So the propagandists are targeting weaknesses; which weaknesses do they think Costa Mesa voters exhibit?

In the effluvia from our mailboxes, we can see that the PACs of the Big Labor organizations, and those supporting the three Anti-everything candidates (which are pretty much the same groups), think FEAR is a major weakness to exploit in Costa Mesa.

FEAR + More

The mailers generate fear with often-untrue warnings such as “There’s great danger in the Charter (or the 3Ms Mensinger, Monahan, McCarthy), while implying that only a few cronies of the powerful support this risky stuff. That’s appealing to the low-self esteemed with fear, and encouraging the “bandwagon” effect as it generates fear. “All of us are banding together to defeat this evil Charter because we’re stronger that way.”

It could backfire several ways

Propagandists risk losing votes by attempting a “bandwagon” effect without using facts or rational argument for persuasion. Mailbox owners who realize that the endorsers of the Charter, such as the OC Register, are expert researchers and very well informed may not want to join the “fearful and fooled” who oppose it. These voters may choose to join the “bandwagon of intelligent and informed voters,” instead.

Some propaganda from the Anti’s also risks alienating folks who understand Civics 1. One message – “concentrates all power into three votes“– just describes the way representative government normally operates, but in big, bold capital letters. Most of us learned about representative government in Junior High School, so the message insults our intelligence rather than inducing fear. Voters may vote their resentment.

Citizens and companies that normally affiliate with either the Republican or Democratic Party may be universally offended, as well, by the accusations of hidden agendas while the Council is winning awards for Transparency in Government. “I don’t care what viewpoint you say you represent, you’re obviously lying to me so you must have something to hide.”

That is, the circulars are gambling that very few people with mailboxes will recognize the insults to their intelligence, education, and abilities and reject the message, as well as the group that sent it.

Soon we'll know if it worked here

In a couple of weeks we should find out if the mailers convinced the unwary voters in Costa Mesa. Propaganda -- very expensive-- nearly a half million dollars as of today -- is being thrown into the Costa Mesa election by Big Labor.

Maybe it will work.

No comments:

Post a Comment