Lies told by the corporate media outlets have a two-tiered structure. The surface level contains assertions that are debatable. Beneath it is an underlying level that consists of labels and buzzwords which provoke emotional responses. The underlying level is the important one. It is the engine of the lie.
Suppose I claim that, “Moammar Ghaddafi was a brutal dictator who slaughtered his own people.”
This claim has two levels. The underlying level consists of the label “brutal dictator.” It is designed to provoke an emotional response. The superficial level consists of “kills his own people.” This is a claim about someone’s actions.
What’s important is the underlying label, not the superficial claim. The engine of the lie is what someone supposedly is, not what he allegedly did.
Did the brutal dictator slaughter his own people? If so, how many? These questions can be debated, but they are not important. The important thing is the label of “brutal dictator.”
People believe the label of what someone is (“brutal dictator”) but they may not believe claims about what someone does (“slaughter his own people”).
By adopting the labels that are fed to them, PEOPLE BELIEVE EVERY CRUCIAL LIE THAT THE CORPORATE MEDIA OUTLETS TELL THEM, while they imagine that they do not, since they question the superficial claims.
“Yes he is a brutal dictator, but I don’t believe he has slaughtered ten million people.”
It does not matter. All that matters is that you adopted the label, which is the core and the essence of the lie. You may debate the surface claims all you want, but if you believe the underlying label, then you believe the only part of the lie that is important.
So-called “anti-war” people concede that, “Yes he is a brutal dictator, but…”
In this way they become pro-war. After all, we do not make war on someone because of what he does, but because of what he is. Who cares that he did not slaughter people? All we care about is that he is a “brutal dictator,” and must therefore be destroyed.
Society allows people to debate someone’s alleged actions (“Did he really slaughter his own people?”) but not to question society’s labels (“brutal dictator”).
“Of course he’s a brutal dictator. That’s common sense” (since most people believe the bullshit label).
When people make statements, they protect themselves by first agreeing with a label. “I don’t deny that he is a brutal dictator, but…”
In doing this, they immediately concede the entire debate, while they delude themselves that they have “won.” They voluntarily lose the argument, and then they wonder why the other side will not listen to their reasons. Why should the other side listen? The other side won the instant we adopted the other side’s labels.
To repeat, the effectiveness of media lies depends not on what someone allegedly does, but on what he allegedly is. And what he allegedly is depends what he is labeled.
Once you are labeled “evil,” all of your actions, no matter how kind and compassionate, will be “evil.” Your sheer goodness will be “proof” of your “evil.” When the German National Socialists passed laws against all forms of animal cruelty, the Jews condemned this as “evil,” since it was part of the (mythical) “holocaust.” How? Who cares? All that matters is that the Germans were “evil.” If you question this label, then you too are “evil.” To question a label is to be labeled.
Where am I going with this?
I just read some blog posts that purportedly defended the “leave” vote in the “Brexit” referendum, but which actually defended the “remain” side, because they adopted the “remain” side’s labels.
The blog posts agreed that the “Leave” people were “racists and ugly xenophobes,” but the blog posts defended the Leave vote nonetheless. In accepting the false labels of the “remain” side, they inadvertently attacked the Leave vote.
Many Britons voted to Leave because they have been impoverished by EU dictates, or because they don’t like being ruled by unelected bureaucrats in foreign nations, or because they are tired of austerity and neo-liberalism.
None of this matters. The only thing that matters is that they are “racists and ugly xenophobes.”
It does not matter what they do. All that matters is what they are. And what they are depends on what they are labeled (“racists and ugly xenophobes”).
What matters is not facts, but labels.
And so, once again, by adopting bullshit labels, PEOPLE BELIEVE EVERY CRUCIAL LIE THE CORPORATE MEDIA OUTLETS TELL THEM.
At this point the liars try to trap me like this…
THEM: Do you deny that the Leave people are racists and ugly xenophobes?
ME: I’m not interested in your labels. Tell me about the alleged actions of the Leave people that makes them racists and ugly xenophobes.
THEM: They complain about immigrants.
ME: That does not make them racists. If a nation has no borders, then it is not a nation. The UK is an island nation. Do you deny that Britons should be able to decide on their own immigration policy?
THEM: They’re still racists and ugly xenophobes.
ME: You ignored my question and simply repeated your labels. You scream “racism!” because it is a label that absolves you from having to think, and from having to prove anything. Do you claim that British people are more racist than are other people?
THEM: I’m not making comparisons. I am—
ME: Repeating your bullshit labels, so you don’t have to answer yes or no. What do you think is more important, the freedom to vote on the laws of your country, or the freedom of immigrants to move into your country? If you think the second is more important, than why should we have countries and borders in the first place?
THEM: I’m not here for a long-winded philosophical discussion. I’m here to—
ME: Repeat your bullshit labels. I get it.
People adopt a herd mentality based on labels, not facts. They go to war based on labels. In 1990 the US government said Iraq must be destroyed because Iraqis were throwing babies out of incubators in Kuwait. When this lie was exposed as a hoax, it did not matter. All that mattered was the label of Iraqis as “evil Muslims.”
The label “Nazi” has become synonymous with evil. What the National Socialists actually did or didn’t do is irrelevant. When you are “evil,” everything you do is “evil.” Everything you don’t do is “evil.” Every aspect of you is “evil.” The way you tie your shoes. The way you butter your toast. The way you scratch your scalp. It is all “evil.” It is all part of the mythical “holocaust.”
Likewise, since the Leave people are “racists and xenophobes,” everything they do, no matter how trivial, is “racist and xenophobic.” Everything they do to prove that they are not racists and xenophobes is more “proof” that they are “racists and xenophobes,” since they are just trying to hide their “evil.”
If we want to “question authority,” then we must start by questioning the labels that authority figures feed us.
Example: Instead of believing that label affixed to Bashar al Assad (he is a “brutal dictator”) ask for proof of what Assad has actually done. Most people will simply repeat the label. “How do I know he is a dictator? Because he is.”
When you read a news article, pay attention to the labels used. They will almost always be bullshit. Ignore what people supposedly are, and ask what they allegedly do.
For example, every time an Israeli slaughters a child, the Israeli claims that his victim was a “human shield.” That’s a label. The Israeli will not explain what the child or what other adults did that made the child a “human shield,” because those lies can be challenged.
The human mind thinks in labels. Society runs on labels. People kill each other because of labels. So, when anyone attacks the “Leave” people with labels (“they are racists!”) you can be sure that the attackers are hate-filled morons.