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First published on GR on January 9, 2023.
COVID-19 is the largest, most sophisticated propaganda operation in history. Psychological techniques were extensively used during 2020 to incite fear and panic in the population
Propaganda strategies were also used to get people to support and defend irrational COVID measures such as masking, isolation, social distancing, lockdowns and jab mandates
What made the COVID propaganda so much more effective than any previous propaganda operation is the fact that a virus is the perfect enemy. It’s invisible, could be carried by anyone, including those you love the most, and could “get” you anywhere
Classical rhetoric is about persuasion through argument. It appeals to logic. Propaganda, on the other hand, is a kind of subrational manipulation that appeals to our most basic instincts, such as fear. An informal definition of propaganda is “an organized attempt to get people to think or do something — or not think or do something”
The Great Lie is possible because the more divorced a lie is from reality, the more likely it is to succeed, as most people are reluctant to think that authority figures would lie and completely ignore reality
In the video above,1,2 initially published in August 2021, professor Piers Robinson, Ph.D. — co-director of the Organization for Propaganda Studies, whose research specialty is organized persuasive communication and contemporary propaganda — speaks to Asia Pacific Today about propaganda in the age of COVID.
As noted by Robinson, COVID-19 is unquestionably the largest, most sophisticated propaganda operation in history. Psychological techniques were extensively used during 2020 to incite fear and panic in the population, while other persuasion strategies were used to get people to support and defend COVID measures such as masking, isolation, social distancing, lockdowns and jab mandates.
The Propaganda War
Indeed, propaganda is what allowed for draconian and unscientific COVID measures to be implemented in the first place. Without propaganda and simultaneous censorship of opposing views, little of what we’ve been through would have been possible.
As noted by Robinson, while the use of state propaganda could initially be justified as a necessary means to achieve a public health objective — protecting people from COVID-related illness and death — it quickly became apparent that this was not the case, and likely never was.
Today, three years in, it’s quite evident that COVID is a psychological operation. For example, since 2022 at the latest, COVID has been nothing more than another endemic respiratory infection, much like the common cold, yet the pandemic has not been declared “over.”
We now also have clear evidence that the COVID jabs don’t prevent infection or spread of the virus, which negates the entire premise for vaccine passports, yet they’re being pushed anyway. In short, COVID-19 was (and still is) a means to an end; to suspend and strip us of Constitutional rights and civil liberties, and to further social, political and financial restructuring objectives outside democratic processes.
A Propaganda Masterpiece
Another propaganda expert who has spoken about the overt use of propaganda to create and maintain the pandemic is professor Mark Crispin Miller, Ph.D., whom I interviewed in June 2021 about the academic censorship he experienced at New York University.
Ironically, it was his teaching students how to question and resist propaganda that brought on the curtailment of his academic freedom, after teaching this important subject for over 20 years. Like Robinson, Miller believes that what we’ve experienced over the past three years is a propaganda “masterpiece” of unequaled scale and sophistication.
It began with the outbreak of an unknown pathogen in China. Media showed images of people allegedly dropping dead in the streets. This has never happened anywhere else since then, which strongly suggests those images were misappropriated for one purpose — to spread fear.
According to Miller, the type of fearmongering used to propagate the belief that COVID-19 was a lethal threat was the most devastating ever used in propaganda history. What made the COVID propaganda so much more effective than any previous propaganda operation was the fact that a virus is the perfect enemy.
It’s invisible, could be carried by anyone, including those you love the most, and could “get” you anywhere. As explained by Miller, in previous propaganda operations, the enemy was typically portrayed as having the ability to “infect” the people and the nation with its evil.
This was the case both with anti-communist propaganda and the “war on terror.” Communism was likened to an infectious disease set to ravage the nation, and terrorists were likened to a pandemic that had to be controlled and combated. With COVID, the propaganda shifted to the thing of fear itself — an actual virus.
Despite a long-held understanding that asymptomatic infection doesn’t exist, the propagandists even managed to convince the public that perfectly healthy people could spread the virus. It was a complete fiction, a scientific falsehood, which is how we know that the pandemic narrative was a psychological operation, yet people were so fearful, they didn’t question it.
What Is Propaganda?
As noted by blogger and propaganda analyst Klark Barnes,3 if we want to be free, we must know what propaganda is and how it works. Classical rhetoric is about persuasion through argument. It appeals to logic. Propaganda, on the other hand, is a kind of subrational manipulation that appeal to our most basic instincts.
An informal definition of propaganda is “an organized attempt to get people to think or do something — or not think or do something.” Propaganda can be true or false, or somewhere in between, and can be used for both good and ill. Public service ads encouraging you not to smoke, for example, are a form of benevolent propaganda.
The problem with propaganda is that it’s inherently biased and one-sided, which can become outright dangerous if the other side is censored.
This is particularly true when it comes to medicine and health, and the censoring of COVID-19 treatment information and the potential hazards of the COVID shots is a perfect example of this. State propaganda and war propaganda also rely heavily on the incitement of fear and anger, which makes people behave in ways they normally wouldn’t.
They Must Constantly Stir the Pot to Keep Fear Simmering
As noted by Barnes, media forecasts of other “imminent ordeals” are also a way “to keep widespread fear and anger simmering:”4
“The possible next acts include a cyber-attack (‘by Russia’); a breakdown of the world supply chain, and consequent food shortages, or famine (likely to be blamed on Russia); a heightened ‘climate crisis,’ necessitating further lockdowns …
‘[T]terrorist’ attacks, by ‘white supremacists’ and angry blacks (portending war between the races); an ‘alien attack’ on Planet Earth, as in The War of the Worlds or Independence Day; and — of course — another plague or two, or three, caused by some further COVID ‘variant,’ smallpox … the Marburg virus, and/or whatever other pathogen, real or imaginary, might serve the same old purpose …
Such looming sequels to the COVID propaganda … would also each inflict a vast amount of further suffering on humanity — and so those of us who study propaganda critically, as public intellectuals, must speak out loud and clear, to set things right.”
According to Barnes, setting things right involves, first and foremost, sharing the truth. Propaganda narratives that must be countered with careful and thorough analysis include but are not limited to:
Over the past three years, I’ve written many articles detailing all of these. But setting the record straight on individual propaganda topics is not enough. If we are to retain our freedoms, Barnes believes the public also needs to get much savvier about propaganda overall.
The Free Press Has Became a Propaganda Juggernaut
For decades, we had a free press that helped keep pro-industry advertising lies in check. Professional investigative journalists working for magazines, newspapers and broadcast outlets would write in-depth exposés, outing the truth behind deceptive advertising and countering industry propaganda with science, statistics and other documented facts.
As a result of the free press doing its job, ineffective or toxic products were often driven off the market. The answer that industry came up with for this problem was to control the press with advertising dollars. By becoming a major revenue stream, advertisers more or less automatically ended up controlling the content.
Even though media management and editors will deny it, if advertisers don’t want you to speak about certain issues that might adversely impact their business, all they have to do is threaten to pull their ads.
At that point, you have to make a decision: Ditch the truth or ditch your income. Most news organizations will ditch the truth for payment, and simply will not run reports that might harm the bottom line of its advertisers. As explained by Barnes:5
“That real-life Ministry of Truth was not set up ex nihilo by some iron faction of totalitarian oligarchs but gradually took shape out of a corporate media cartel with interlocking boards, heavily dependent on the advertising revenues of Amazon, Big Pharma … and the media’s own parent companies … with its assets closely managed by BlackRock, Vanguard and UBS …
[As] that vast commercial system has become more unified, it also has maintained, or even tightened, its covert relations with the military and ‘intelligence community’ …
And while the commercial media system has been thus corrupted top to bottom … the ‘public’ media and ‘alternative’ press — from NPR, PBS, the BBC and CBC … to nearly every single outlet on ‘the left’ — have also been absorbed into the juggernaut primarily by their funding through such sturdy CIA pass-throughs as the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Open Society Institute …
[The] ‘free press’ … has been turned into a bio-fascist fear machine, its propaganda services assured by Bill Gates’ ‘strategic media partnerships,’ and the concomitant ‘fact-checking’ operation that he also largely funds.
The propaganda gushing daily, hourly, from that system also has depended on the wisdom of such global PR firms as Weber Shandwick, Edelman and Hill+Knowlton Strategies … and, within the Fourth Estate, the rise … of ‘journalists’ prepared, in university, to be far less concerned with honest journalism than with … serving ‘social justice.’”
The Web of Players Silencing Truth
Indeed, as Barnes notes, advertising companies have likely played an important organizational role in the COVID propaganda. Another major one, which I suspect may have had a central role, is the Publicis Groupe. I detailed some of its many connections in “The Web of Players Trying to Silence Truth.”
In summary, Publicis represents a long list of major companies within the technology, pharmaceutical and banking industries in more than 100 countries.6 These companies, in turn, have various partnerships with the U.S. government and global nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).
Publicis has ties to NewsGuard/HealthGuard, educational institutions, Big Tech companies like Google, Microsoft and Bing, the U.S. State Department and Department of Defense, global technocratic institutions like the World Health Organization, national and global NGOs like the Center for Countering Digital Hate. And, it dominates health websites like WebMD and Medscape.
Taken together, this explains how certain views can be so effectively erased. Publicis itself is also a partner of the World Economic Forum, which is leading the call for a “reset” of the global economy and our way of life. As such, Publicis appears to be coordinating the suppression of information that runs counter to the technocratic narrative.
The Art of the Great Lie
Marshall McLuhan once said,7 “Little lies don’t need to be protected. But the great lies are protected by public incredulity.” Basically, people will deny really big lies by saying “Come on, you’re crazy, they wouldn’t do that.” It’s far easier to call people “conspiracy theorists” than it is to face the possibility that what they’re saying is true.
Little lies don’t need to be protected. The big lies are protected by public incredulity. ~ Marshall McLuhan
In a November 4, 2022, article,8 clinical and public health physician Dr. David Bell noted that the more divorced a lie is from reality, the more likely it is to succeed, thanks to the quirks of human nature and normal psychology:
“In a former role I had a boss who lied a lot. The lies were pure fantasy, but massive in scope and delivered with sincerity. They were very successful.
This success was based on the reluctance of most people to consider that someone in a position of authority in a humanitarian organization would completely ignore all semblance of reality. People assumed the claims must be true as fabricating information to that extent in those circumstances seemed to defy logic.
The principle of Really Big Lies is based on the lies being so divorced from reality that the listener will assume their own perception must be flawed, rather than doubt the claims of the person telling the lies. Only an insane or ridiculous person would make such outlandish claims, and a credible institution would not employ such a person.
Therefore, given that the institution is apparently credible, the statements must also be credible, and the listener’s prior perception of reality was therefore flawed. Lesser lies, by contrast, are likely to be perceived as sufficiently close to known reality to be demonstrably wrong. Inventing truth can be more effective than bending it.”
I believe this is precisely the strategy employed by Big Pharma, health agencies, government officials and the deep state propaganda arm over the past three years. Their claims have been so far from any semblance of reality, anyone aware of the facts has been left feeling more than a little crazy.
Unfortunately, while most humans have a moral and ethical compass, few end up following it when confronted by psychopaths in authority and the peer pressure to conform. As noted by Bell, good team players almost always end up supporting false narratives, and those who refuse to go along with what are clearly lies tend to be but a tiny minority.
Refusing False Narratives Has Real Consequences
As Bell correctly points out, over the past three years, health care workers, patients, researchers, academics and public health employees have been forced to embrace a long list of fantasy-based dogmas that are contradicted by prior public health orthodoxy.
But it’s the sharp break from factual reality that makes it impossible to question them because, if you do, you’re now questioning “the entire current hierarchy of public health,” Bell says. To quote Dr. Anthony Fauci, you’re not attacking him when you question his irrational flip-flopping, you’re questioning science itself.
If you question these fantasy-based beliefs, you’re a science-denier, and you’re putting your employment and reputation at risk. And, unfortunately, those risks are not imaginary. Many doctors and scientists whose reputations and contributions to public health have been beyond reproach for decades have been stripped of their medical licenses and lost their jobs for speaking out against the reigning COVID narratives.
Transparency and Truth Are the Remedy
So, where do we go from here? How do we end the madness and return to reality-based public health? Bell believes that public health professionals who have misled the public will inevitably pay a heavy price for their betrayal. He writes:9
“Whilst growing their industry’s finances, public health professionals are degrading themselves and betraying society. The betrayal, based on incessant lying, is something for which they will inevitably face consequences …
Eventually, even the most dedicated followers will begin to question the sense of putting on a mask at a restaurant door only to remove it 10 steps later, or vaccinating vast populations against a disease to which they are already immune whilst they die of other readily preventable diseases.
The way out of this is simply to refuse to lie, or cover for the lies of others … [The] truth will catch up, one day, with those who don’t … It is far better to leave early and live with dignity.”
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1 Asia Pacific Today August 4, 2022
2 Twitter Robert Malone August 7, 2022
3, 4, 5 Earlking56.family.blog November 19, 2022
6 Publicis Top Global Clients
7 Samim.io McLuhan Quote
8, 9 Propaganda in Focus November 4, 2022
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