Thursday, April 14, 2016

Keep the Poke You Hide the Pig in...

...Interesting enough who cares about the pig at all. That this has been an aspect of commercialized endeavor since the huckster was born ought to go without saying. It is certainly of the reasons why I have always maintained that the hard sell is immoral.

But now that we live in the age of reality spinning, as attested to in the move "Wag the Dog," we can see what a boon the immensely clever hard sell can be to politics and propaganda. And the fact that this sort of thing is being adopted with a vengeance by hard line authoritarians, like Putin in Russia, but also like Fox News here, we can see just how perverse, and ultimately corruptive to civic discourse, is the notion that "truth" is irrelevant to establishing your own desired narrative to any situation.

I have been reminded of this sad situation by the linked article here from Defense One: "How Russia Is Revolutionizing Information Warfare" by Peter Pomerantsev. This is a very good read and I do recommend it, even though it is thoroughly depressing; especially so when the question of the rise of right wing parties are concerned. As the article states:

“Is there more interest in conspiracy theories because far-right parties are growing, or are far-right parties growing because more conspiracy thinking is being pumped into the information space?” asks Gleb Pavlovsky, a little wickedly.

The bottom line here, of course, is that, with everybody pumping out their own, wonderfully entertaining narratives, and the more the better, however mutually contradictory they are, how are we to keep from numbing out to all of it. How are we to keep from eventually envying the willful ignorance of those whose choices are already making a bunch of stressed systems a great deal worse.

Pro-Russian fighters in Donetsk sit in a vehicle with a heavy machine gun attached, on September 7, 2014.

How Russia Is Revolutionizing Information Warfare

Putin's Russia doesn’t just deal in the petty disinformation, forgeries, lies and cyber-sabotage usually associated with information warfare. It reinvents reality. By Peter Pomerantsev