It is not hard to imagine a dialogue between Mediacrat, Psyops, Politician and Think Tanker – perhaps sitting around during a coffee break at the annual Bilderberg get together.
Mediacrat: We know the sheeple are stupid and believe everything we tell them over and over and over.
Psyops: That works for sure. Anything that sounds familiar has to be true. That’s how people learn.
Mediacrat: But some of the stuff we’ve been telling people is so far off the wall that even some of the deplorables, you know, the common people, are beginning to have doubts. Weapons of mass destruction, a new Hitler to overthrow every few years, and the more trillions we spend on defense the more threatened we are. Not clear whether we are overthrowing Middle East regimes for or against Islamic terrorists. Of course nobody knows where those places are, but what matters is the story line, which gets confused.
Politician: So who cares what the common people think? So long as we get the money from the oligarchs, we win the elections.
Mediacrat: Sure, but this doubt is hurting our business. People don’t buy newspapers any more, some of them even start looking for news elsewhere. Besides, if money wins elections it’s also because the money is us! We are the voice of big money! We do more to elect you than you do yourselves.
Politician: That’s not fair. I lie as much as you do, even more.
Think Tanker: Wait a minute. I’m the one who actually produces most of the really important lies. Without my fertile imagination, how would you be able to come up with all these dramatic pretexts for keeping the war economy running smoothly?
Psyops: I think you’re not giving me enough credit, but let’s not quarrel among ourselves. In order to maintain world hegemony, it is essential for the United States to be seen as the shining city on the hill, the home of democracy, crusading to impose its benefits on the rest of an ungrateful world. If masses of people show they don’t believe in our exceptional unity in diversity, it could make a bad impression on our satellites.
Politician: Then bomb them.
Think Tanker: We can’t bomb everyone at once. Only a few at a time, to keep things going.
Mediacrat: Bombs can’t do everything. We also need to manufacture consent. We have Hollywood, CNN, the New York Times and Washington Post, all doing their best. But until recently, they could count on the absence of any audible contradiction. Now something is happening – the Internet, blogs, Russia Today…
Politician, Psyops, ThinkTanker (in chorus): Russia Today! That’s it!
Psyops: Yes, Russia today is both the problem and the solution.
Think Tanker: I think I see where you’re heading…
Psyops: Look, RT has interfered grossly in our democracy by giving a voice to American intellectuals and journalists whom we have systematically marginalized for decades.
Mediacrat: Absolutely. RT lets real Americans say whatever they think about America and U.S. foreign policy. None of those Americans could ever keep a job as editorialist for the Washington Post. Newsweek would fire every single one. They’d never get a peep out of Pentagon, State Department and White House sources. How can a journalist report on U.S. policy without being briefed by anonymous official sources? Ridiculous.
Think Tanker: Just like us, media hold the party line by hiring Eastern European émigrés who count on U.S. military power to settle their historic grudges. Those are people who would really enjoy seeing Moscow bombed!
Psyops: RT doesn’t say much about Russia, and nobody wants to hear about Russia anyway. But they regularly interview highly articulate Americans – lots of them, in fact – who contradict the official narrative and who report news about things happening in the United States in totally the wrong way. This can cause confusion.
Politician: We know that.
Think Tanker: Fortunately few people in the United States listen to RT, its success is mostly confined to Americans who feel cheered up hearing people say what they were already thinking, but never expected to hear on a TV channel.
Mediacrat: But people who don’t think correctly must remain isolated. Moreover, along with Internet sites like Truthdig, Consortium News, The Intercept, CounterPunch, Global Research, the Ron Paul Institute, Paul Craig Roberts – the list goes on and on – lots of people are coming into contact with versions of reality which make our version sound increasingly far-fetched.
Psyops: And there you have it. RT presents an alternative narrative. The sites mentioned also present an alternative narrative. Therefore, the alternative sites are the same as RT, in fact, they are working for RT, and RT is working for the Kremlin!
Politician: The Kremlin – that’s good, sounds like the communist evil empire.
Psyops: Here’s the point. We insist that RT is a Putin plot to destroy America. The sheeple – or at least the older ones – are used to hearing that the Kremlin wants to destroy America, that goes down easily. In order to destroy America, the Kremlin uses RT (and Sputnik news) to create an alternative reality. We call that alternative reality “fake news”. It must be fake news because it’s not the official version. Now, watch this: the alternative reality fake news on RT very much resembles what is said on alternative internet sites, blogs, and so on. Therefore, it is all a Commie – excuse me, Putin – plot.
Mediacrat: We’d better hurry up and get this across before more people start watching RT.
Politician: There’s not a minute to lose. I’ve got it! When the War Party loses an election, that’s because of RT!
Think Tanker: Not very credible considering RT’s small audience in the United States.
Politician: Well, we can’t wait until the audience grows, can we? Let’s blame them now, a preventive strike.
Think Tanker: Now you’re talking my language.
Psyops: Look, we kill all those birds with one stone. First, we tell the masses that Moscow has gone back to being the Evil Empire, and everything it does is intended to destroy our glorious democracy, out of spite. Evil Empires are like that. Once they are convinced that Russia is the source of all evil, that RT is the instrument of that evil, a wicked foreign agent, then we make clear that all the other alternative sites are also fake news designed by the Evil Empire. So alternative commentators, journalists and intellectuals are also foreign agents. Nobody will dare listen to them. Simple, isn’t it?
Politician: I love it. Anyone who opposes me is a foreign agent. Let’s have another election!
Mediacrat: But what do we do with those American journalists – I mean foreign agents? We can’t fire them since we never hired them in the first place.
Psyops: Look, I don’t want to go too far, but there’s a lot of spare room in Guantanamo these days…