Part 1 in the series Proper Propaganda
Have you ever been charged with a crime and told the arresting officer to “read my book”, “talk to my publicist”, or “listen to my personal address”? Typically, this is only something that those with great power or wealth can do. They aren’t just the news, they make the news.
No self-respecting newsman is going to wait until a court decides its case before reporting on some salacious story. They will interview family, friends, neighbors, enemies, and random people with random opinions to get some sound bites and make it appear that they are providing “the story”. If you are a Regular Joe, it might help if they interview close family and friends, because what is your mother going to say that will make you look bad? Of course, this isn’t the type of opinion that makes good headlines and sells the “news”. It is much more likely that they will find your paranoid neighbor, who never leaves their house, and has never actually spoken to you, but watches suspiciously whenever you take your early morning jog; or maybe they will find your ex, who has an ax to grind and loves to tell stories that are quite far from the truth…and a bit embarrassing. These are the stories that will be all over the news, making headlines, and filling the space between commercial breaks.
Not so, if you are among those that have any real influence. You can have your Press Secretary give out little tidbits about the topic that make you look good, even when you are the guiltiest person there is. Remember, you are probably not in jail, like Average Joes, you haven’t been made to look guilty by being paraded in cuffs from your home, wearing only your pajamas and with your hair messy from sleep, with cameras flashing. People may assume you are guilty, but there is nothing that gives you room to change public opinion than being able to dress your best, be coached by your lawyers and publicists, and give a serious, “honest”, and trustworthy smile and wave before letting your very innocent and honest looking public relations person sway the masses with well-engineered manipulation.
Normal people aren’t allowed to publicly state their side of the story, for fear of biasing the jury. Even in court, they are constrained, and often only able to answer yes and no questions. Any deviation from this is frowned on and may be considered Contempt of Court. On the other hand, if you are truly in a place of influence, every juror in the courtroom will have seen your innocent children and pretty wife or handsome husband pleading for them to see how innocent you truly are. They will have seen a large number of upstanding people of prominence standing before the cameras, vouching for your innocence. They will have been educated to the nuances of law and circumstances that “prove” your innocence. They will have heard your story, and found you innocent, before they can even be selected, let alone sequestered. Whether you are innocent or guilty, if you are using Proper Propaganda, you will tell your story, whether it be true or a pack of lies, because Self-Reporting is the best “reporting”.
Writes about politics from a Conservative Libertarian viewpoint. While pushing for a government that is Fiscally Conservative and Socially Liberal, he personally appreciates the Socially Conservative lifestyle.
Copyright R. A. Welkin