I and many who support Independence for Scotland will complain often of the Lies and misinformation which is spread by Unionist parties and the British Media, with the BBC near the top of the complaints table!
Of course, no matter how much we might complain about Imbalance in programming or lying perpetrators being allowed to spread their poison unchallenged, it is a complete and utter waste of our time, our complaints achieve little or nothing. It is only if they are really caught with their pants down, that they may quietly apologise,and watch that they don’t make the same obvious mistake again.
Otherwise, It is business as usual!
What I can almost certainly guarantee, is that for the next two and half years, all their nonsense will increase ten fold. The only thing that will put the hems on it, is if the Conservatives really secretly would like to get rid of the thorn that is Scotland from their side.
In which case we will see some of them making seemingly massive blunders, while appearing to support the Union. The others will do their best to talk Scotland down as usual, while appearing to give the impression that they are not doing so.
What we have is the Black Arts of Propaganda in full swing.
Often when we think of these Black Arts nowadays, they are associated with Spin. Spin of course is merely propagating Lies or half truths to your advantage or your opponents disadvantage.
People are well aware nowadays that this goes on, and even chuckle at the antics of the Malcolm Tuckers of this world. But they are still deceived, and still taken in.
How can they be taken in, if they know its going on?
Quite easily. Just because something appears as if its in sight, doesn’t actually mean that you recognise it for what it really is, or what it is doing to you.
Yesterdays news of Fred the Shred is a case in point. Did what you think was happening really happen? Yes and No.
Yes Fred lost his spurs. Yes there was much a moral backlash from the media and politicians. But Fred wasn’t really what it was all about.
I wonder how many did get it? By the looks of so called experts on tv programmes, they didn’t know. They couldn’t quite understand what was going on, and thought it strange that Fred had been singularly Scapegoated in this way, when others have not been. They said it was all a Symbolic gesture, but were they right?
Yes it was a Symbolic gesture, but it was nothing to do with financial regulation, or government action/inaction. It wasn’t even about Banking.
What you saw, you didn’t see. What you thought it was about, was not really what it is about.
It was the classic Illusionist trick of the Master Magicians of the Black Arts.
Do you see which hand the ball is in yet?
I will leave Freds story and come back to him later. I will leave you to ponder the trick and move on.
Let me instead give you a lesson in the Black Arts, and how they work. Perhaps you will recognise them better when you see them.
Lets look at some of the techniques, but before we do, a quick look at how Britain controls them.
During the Great Wars, propoganda was a huge tool for all sides, and it was a war within a war.
After the War In 1948, the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office created the IRD (Information Research Department), which took over from wartime and slightly post-war departments such as the Ministry of Information and dispensed propaganda via various media such as the BBC and publishing
The Information Research Department, founded in 1948 by Christopher Mayhew MP, was a department of the British Foreign Office set up to counter Russian propaganda and infiltration, particularly amongst the western labour movement.
The original offices were in Carlton House Terrace, before moving to Riverwalk House, Millbank, London.
IRD’s main targets were in the Third World. However, it was also set out to “be of use to” British media and opinion formers. As well as supplying material to the BBC World Service, secret lists were compiled of approved journalists and trade unionists to whom material was offered, if not always accepted.
The ethical objection raised by IRD’s critics was that the public did not know the source of the information and could therefore not make allowances for the possible bias. It differed thus from straightforward propaganda from the British point of view
Eventually The department was closed down by then Foreign Secretary, David Owen, in 1977.
But if you think for one moment that the British Establishment wont be using such methods now? Then you are extremely gullible.
The department closed not because of any controversy, but because It was outed!
Ask yourself why MI5 has a permanent Scottish office in Glasgow right next to the BBC and were caught involved with BBC vetting in 1980.
But of course we have the Spin Doctors of political government, who wont go to the same lengths as the Security Service but utilise deception in some of their ways. Blairs Government was the one to Introduce us to them. Campbell and Mandleson being the henchmen of it.
Ok, what do they do?
Lets have a quick look.
“The propagandist seeks to change the way people understand an issue or situation for the purpose of changing their actions and expectations in ways that are desirable to the interest group. Propaganda, in this sense, serves as a corollary to censorship in which the same purpose is achieved, not by filling people’s minds with approved information, but by preventing people from being confronted with opposing points of view. What sets propaganda apart from other forms of advocacy is the willingness of the propagandist to change people’s understanding through deception and confusion rather than persuasion and understanding. The leaders of an organization know the information to be one sided or untrue, but this may not be true for the rank and file members who help to disseminate the propaganda.”
“Propaganda is also one of the methods used in psychological warfare, which may also involve false flag operations. The term propaganda may also refer to false information meant to reinforce the mindsets of people who already believe as the propagandist wishes. The assumption is that, if people believe something false, they will constantly be assailed by doubts. Since these doubts are unpleasant, people will be eager to have them extinguished, and are therefore receptive to the reassurances of those in power. For this reason propaganda is often addressed to people who are already sympathetic to the agenda. This process of reinforcement uses an individual’s predisposition to self-select “agreeable” information sources as a mechanism for maintaining control.”
Propaganda may be administered in insidious ways. For instance, disparaging disinformation about the history of certain groups or foreign countries may be encouraged or tolerated in the educational system. Since few people actually double-check what they learn at school or in textbooks, such disinformation will be repeated by journalists as well as parents, thus reinforcing the idea that the disinformation item is really a “well-known fact”, even though no one repeating the myth is able to point to an authoritative source. The disinformation is then recycled in the media and in the educational system, without the need for direct governmental intervention on the media. Such permeating propaganda may be used for political goals: by giving citizens a false impression of the quality or policies of their country, they may be incited to reject certain proposals or certain remarks or ignore the experience of others
Common media for transmitting propaganda messages include news reports, government reports, historical revision, junk science, books, leaflets, movies, radio, television, and posters.
The Message: How is it Spread?
Is Latin phrase that has come to mean attacking one’s opponent, as opposed to attacking their arguments.
Take how Alex Salmond is attacked continually for being Smug, Fat, compared to Hitler or any other Dictator, or Mugabe by Paxman.
A prime example of this technique, used in the Lords, The Commons, The Printed Media.
This argument approach uses tireless repetition of an idea. An idea, especially a simple slogan, that is repeated enough times, may begin to be taken as the truth
Scotland being described as ‘Too Weak, Too Poor, Too Stupid’
The continual usage of Separatists to describe Independence supporters but mostly the SNP.
Appeal to authority
Appeals to authority cite prominent figures to support a position, idea, argument, or course of action.
The usage of so called experts to cast doubt on Scotlands ability to function. Cameron and Osbourne citing the chap from Citibank to say that they Big Business have concerns about investing in Scotland.
Before it was found out that the 3times Bankrupt CitiBank had been working with the British Government since Labour installed them.
There are many cases of this, so always do a background check on the expert cited.
Appeal to fear
Appeals to fear and seeks to build support by instilling anxieties and panic in the general population, for example, Joseph Goebbels exploited Theodore Kaufman’s Germany Must Perish! to claim that the Allies sought the extermination of the German people.
In Scotlands case, building fear that we would be marooned in a bad way and be in deep trouble if things didn’t work out after Independence.
Peoples fears of their pensions, and welfare,mortgages and for their children.
Appeal to prejudice
Using loaded or emotive terms to attach value or moral goodness to believing the proposition. Used in biased or misleading ways.
The repeated articulation of a complex of events that justify subsequent action. The descriptions of these events have elements of truth, and the “big lie” generalizations merge and eventually supplant the public’s accurate perception of the underlying events. After World War I the German Stab in the back explanation of the cause of their defeat became a justification for Nazi re-militarization and revanchist aggression.
Presenting only two choices, with the product or idea being propagated as the better choice. For example: “You’re either with us, or against us….”
Or In Scotlands case, why the Unionists Really want to keep it down to a straight choice for or against Independence, and why Salmond and the SNP are leaving them flapping over a possible alternative choice in the mix.
The creation or deletion of information from public records, in the purpose of making a false record of an event or the actions of a person or organization, including outright forgery of photographs, motion pictures, broadcasts, and sound recordings as well as printed documents.
The hiding away of the McCrone report is a prime example. Or from a slightly different example of this technique on the Media side, try watching a big debate in the Scottish Parliament on Holyrood Live, then watch the BBC Scotland News report later and look at how the editing is done!
Is used to increase a person’s latitude of acceptance. For example, if a salesperson wants to sell an item for £100 but the public is only willing to pay £50, the salesperson first offers the item at a higher price (e.g., £200) and subsequently reduces the price to £100 to make it seem like a good deal.
Or lets say..The British Government only wants Scotland to build one of three aircraft carriers. It makes it known that they are considering building four of them. They haven’t decided yet who is going to get to build them.
Scotland with a strong shipbuilding tradition thinks it should build them, but discovers that the British Government has leaked that they will all be going down to the South Coast.
Scotland puts is a strongly worded plea, and get told sorry, we really want to keep all of them down here.
Much noise and publicity ensues, media and press discussion, who said what and when.
Eventually the Government says, look we have decided to build only three, but think it only fair that Scotland gets to build one of them.
Scotland agrees, one is better than none, and the British Government has what it always wanted! And they can say how good they have been to us by letting us have one!
The use of an event that generates euphoria or happiness, or using an appealing event to boost morale. Euphoria can be created by declaring a holiday, making luxury items available, or mounting a military parade with marching bands and patriotic messages.
Used a lot in the lead up to the Scottish elections last year, 2 Royal weddings, date set to coincide close to Scots election.
Much flag waving, lots of noise, ridiculous hype, and one of them takes place up here!
The Scots didn’t buy it!
Watch out for more in the London Olympics, the determination to have a GB football team despite Scotland saying NO, it could jeopardise us in FIFA.
Queens Jubilee is another massive flag waving, drum beating exercise to look forward to.
And for opposite reasons, why they dont want the referendum in 2014, the year of the Commonwealth games and Scotland winning the World Cup! and the anniversary of Bannockburn.
Fear, uncertainty and doubt
An attempt to influence public perception by disseminating negative and dubious/false information designed to undermine the credibility of their beliefs.
There are far too many of these to mention with regards their actions towards Scotland,but they are easy to spot, and almost daily just now, so just watch what information is dispersed.
A half-truth is a deceptive statement, which may come in several forms and includes some element of truth. The statement might be partly true, the statement may be totally true but only part of the whole truth, or it may utilize some deceptive element, such as improper punctuation, or double meaning, especially if the intent is to deceive, evade, blame or misrepresent the truth.
Used a lot by Labour, and seen in action recently with Lamont, Curran, and Dougie Alexander all attacking Joan McAlpines statement in parliament on TV, where they repeated that she said “”the Liberals, the Labour Party and the Tories are anti-Scottish”
And variations of that theme,when what she actually said was,
“the Liberals, the Labour Party and the Tories are anti-Scottish in coming together to defy the will of the Scottish people and the democratic mandate that they gave us to hold a referendum at a time of our choosing, which, as the First Minister said, would be the latter half of the parliamentary session.”
The TV news all cut their clips to match the Labour version!
A Dysphemism is used when the intent of the propagandist is to discredit, diminish the perceived quality.
The use of the word Separatists to label Independence supporters as divisive.
Managing the news
According to Adolf Hitler “The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly – it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.” This idea is consistent with the principle of classical conditioning as well as the idea of “Staying on Message.”
Listen to Labour Politicians! They do it all the time.
An attempt to control the social environment and ideas through the use of social pressure.
Also well known In West and Central Scotland in years gone by. A Labour Councillor could put the boot into your local housing application if you weren’t on side. Or the opposite in Glasgow in recent years where it is often alleged that party contributions by wealthy business benefactors could get them public property at knockdown prices to sell later at an obscene profit. This is only alleged of course, nobody has been able to get the goods on it yet!
Propagandists use the name-calling technique to start fears and arouse prejudices in their hearers in the intent that the bad names will cause hearers to construct a negative opinion about a group or set of beliefs or ideas that the propagandist wants hearers to denounce. The method is intended to provoke conclusions about a matter apart from impartial examinations of facts. Name-calling is thus a substitute for rational, fact-based arguments against the an idea or belief on its own merits
Obtain disapproval or Reductio ad Hitlerum
This technique is used to persuade a target audience to disapprove of an action or idea by suggesting that the idea is popular with groups hated, feared, or held in contempt by the target audience. Thus if a group that supports a certain policy is led to believe that undesirable, subversive, or contemptible people support the same policy, then the members of the group may decide to change their original position. This is a form of bad logic, where a is said to include X, and b is said to include X, therefore, a = b.
Scottish Nationalists are Nationalists therefore equate Nationalists with BNP, Hitler, Nazis so you Get SNP = Nazis
It doesn’t matter that there a World of distinction between the two types of Nationalism, the important thing is to make Scottish Nationalists appear in the worst light possible!
Presenting data or issues that, while compelling, are irrelevant to the argument at hand, and then claiming that it validates the argument.
Listen to any politician facing a difficult question, they will answer something entirely different from the actual question asked.
Works on the principle that people are more willing to accept an argument from a seemingly independent source of information than from someone with a stake in the outcome. It is a marketing strategy commonly employed by Public Relations (PR) firms, that involves placing a premeditated message in the “mouth of the media.”
The British government uses Focus Groups, Ian MacMillan of CBI Scotland is trotted out frequently to attack the Scottish Governments Business policies. But they use many other seemingly Independent experts and groups who are also decidedly not Impartial.
The BBC in Scotland interviews many of them, but never mentions their connections, and always mentions a Nationalists connection.
Obviously the seemingly Independent one is more reliable, surely?
BBC correspondents Opinions should also be treated with caution, it is opinion not News! Many of whom have had Labour connections! Including the News and Politics Department Heads!
Assigning blame to an individual or group, thus alleviating feelings of guilt from responsible parties and/or distracting attention from the need to fix the problem for which blame is being assigned.
And so finally we come back to Fred Goodwin.
What was it all about?
RBS has been in the news a lot recently, the BIG Bonus outrage!
Over and over again as the current boss, who has turned down his massive Bonus, which incidentally is a lot less than the Bosses of the other Big Banks are getting (and quite disgracefully)Has been in the news.
When he said he was turning the Bonus down, end of that particular story.
Commentators have been surprised that the decision on Freddy has been announced and decided so quickly. They didn’t at all expect it.
But the Government wanted RBS kept to the front! So Freddy gets it right now!
All the talk of how RBS with its previous GDP being bigger than the whole Country, having to be bailed out resumes. We are reminded once more about these ‘Scottish’ Banks. The fact that they are nominally so is overlooked.
We are reminded of the scale of the so called rescue.
We are not told that the British Government did not take on their debts but acted as a Guarantor. It didn’t cost all that much in reality.
We are told again about this catastrophe and bad judgement by this Scottish Banker, and subliminally reminded of his Nationality and the Banks Nationality.
All designed to reduce confidence in Scotland by Scots.
Freds Scapegoating is also to make us see that the Government is taking action, when they are not! Fred is no longer even a Banker.
It is the Black Arts at work. You just need to open your eyes to see where they are misdirecting you!
Update: BBC Scotlands Blogs which have been shut to comments for months, Opens suddenly to allow comments on Freds Story in Douglas Fraser Blog.
Now given all that I have just written….What does that tell you? 😉
BBC Reporting Scotland highlighted Alex Salmonds regret for backing Fred in the good times.
No mention whatsoever of Labours granting him the Peerage,on First Minister Jack the Lord McConnel, nor indeed anything of the support and lauding of him done by Browns Labour Government.
Their Online report sees Lamont attack Salmond for the SNPs support of Light touch financial regulation in Scotland, when all Finacial matters are controlled by Westminster and It was Gordon Brown who made catastrophic mistakes.
Also as part of tonights Reporting Scotland:
Kenny McAskill the Justice Minister apologising for the treatment of Shirley McKee in the fingerprint case, which occurred long before the SNP came into Government, giving the impression that it was poor judgement by the SNP. No mention of Labour again.
UPDATE DAY 3
Finally we get there.
Today Labour accused Alex Salmond of backing Goodwin to buy ANB Anbro,and accusing him of bad judgement. In fact accusing him of Economic incompetence, and calling him Scotlands New Goodwin.
The assertion being that Scots independence would leave Scotland bankrupt.
They were willingly forgetting that the Financial regulations were in a Labour Governments power in Westminster and Alex Salmond had none.
That Labour with Gordon Brown at the helm had brought Goodwin in as a Special Advisor to them, and that is was Jack McConnell who nominated Freds peerage.
Blair and Brown and Balls presided over the whole disaster and made a bad mess a lot worse.
All of this was visible for those with the eyes to see and the brain to think, from day1