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  1. #41
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    I'm not a big fan of propaganda even when used for a "good" cause. I think over-simplification is one of the biggest problems we face in our information-rich society. Everything is boiled down to a simple message and then injected using the appeal to emotion with the hope that you will ACT before you THINK. Even if the action is good, I'm not really an ends-justify-the-means girl.



  2. #42
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    Propaganda is just a tool like a hammer, or a knife, or a gun. There's nothing wrong with it, and we can't blame a tool if it functions as it is supposed to function. We can apply morality only to the people using the tools, but never to the tools themselves. As I said, most advertising is propaganda. It's up to those who see it to recognize it for what it is and train their brains to guide their emotions instead of the other way around.

  3. #43
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    I'm completely comfortable with disliking a tool even when it functions as it is supposed to function.

  4. #44
    Administrator Wickett's Avatar
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    Good points, and I agree John that in the end it's morality that is key. I also agree with Jan though, that there's nothing wrong with disliking a tool, whatever it may be. After all, it's the lack of morality that moves people to invent such tools. I see nothing wrong with being against the people as well as the tool.

    Propaganda is a cheap way of getting your point across. It thrives on ignorance, whether it's technically correct underneath or not.

  5. #45
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    Alrighty...but I didn't say anything about liking or disliking a tool. I said we can't assign blame to a tool, we can only assign blame to people who use the tools inappropriately. And nope, no lack of morality behind the invention of propaganda or guns or any other tools you may dislike. At the beginning of America, self-defense and putting food on the table was mostly the morality behind guns. That's good morality in my book. Propaganda was used to unite Americans during the Revolution, and it was written in blood. It was not cheap, and our forefathers who fought for our freedom were not ignorant. Propaganda is not by definition false and founded on hateful or immoral ideas, and those fired by it are not by definition ignorant or unintelligent.

    If there IS any cheapness or ignorance to be recognized in an instance of propaganda, it is found solely in consumers who buy it, not purveyors. It is consumers who sell their emotions for a song and accept claims without investigation. The purveyors know exactly what they do and why they do it.

  6. #46
    Administrator Wickett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Oberon View Post
    I said we can't assign blame to a tool, we can only assign blame to people who use the tools inappropriately.
    One time I smashed my thumb with a hammer. Pretty sure I placed blame on the hammer. It never felt the same way about itself again.

    You make an excellent point about propaganda in the military to rally the spirits of the people, and I can't say that I have anything against that kind of use for it. Problem is, when is it ever used like that anymore? It's become a cheap way of forcing an idea on someone without any knowledge to back it up. Kind of like pro-life or pro-choice signs. I am 100% pro-life, but I think pro-life signs are just as useless as anything else. There is no backing for the idea, other than that someone out there with enough money to put their ideas on a billboard think it's wrong.

  7. #47
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    They're not useless. We have a row of billboards here in Columbus showing aborted fetuses in support of the heartbeat bill in Ohio. The abortionists constantly try to paint the baby as something like a gall bladder or appendix or even a parasite or tumor that needs to be removed. They're having apoplexy over these billboards calling them Nazi progaganda. I agree that what they show is in the best tradition of the Nazis, but the idea is to stop what they show, stop the holocaust. They're babies, REAL babies, and they're being mangled, burnt, crushed, sliced and diced. Those billboards show the reality of abortion. Are they propaganda? You bet....stark, horrifying, truthful propaganda, and they're having a tremendous affect. The heartbeat bill has a good chance of passing this time. Those signs are anything but useless.

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