the world is still in the grips of an emotional frenzy in the wake of the
terrorist attacks on
Hitler referred to emotion as a kind of doorway or "gateway" into the more suggestible regions of the human heart and mind; once this door has been opened it is possible to "get inside" of people's heads and direct their responses and actions. In the wake of the economic collapse in Germany and the humiliations heaped upon the German people after World War I, Hitler was able to use the emotions that emerged from these events to manipulate public opinion and, ultimately, to lead his people into a terrible and destructive war. Where emotion was lacking, such as in the case of the Jewish question, events were staged or phony stories planted in order to fire people's emotions in the direction that the government wanted to go. That a tyrant like Hitler was aware of and effectively used such knowledge should put all of us on guard. No intelligent person should allow himself or herself to be goaded into blindly supporting the actions of government merely because their emotions tell them so. What is right can only be determined in a state of emotional calm.
your emotions are turned off, you can turn to the task of analyzing
the causes, effects, and solutions to the problems that face you. There is
nothing inherently wrong with emotion, it is a necessary part of the human
psyche; it is that which has allowed us to develop a sense of empathy for our
fellow human beings. There is, for instance, nothing wrong with feeling emotion
for the innocent victims of the
In the end, the reader should remember that propaganda is used as much today as it ever was, and perhaps even more; if we allow ourselves to be manipulated by the spinmasters we could be led to the same unspeakable end that the German people faced. Let us sincerely try to avoid subjecting ourselves to lessons that, in a better world, should have been learned years ago. I would also like to warn my readers to be wary of the those who would stage and fabricate events designed to create emotional responses, as Hitler once did, in order to facilitate what would otherwise be unpopular agendas. To think that such ideas are mere "conspiracy theory" is to make a conscious decision to ignore history. Powerful people manipulate the masses quite consciously and quite deliberately, they always have, and probably always will (unless the masses wise up). A brief perusal of the writings of such people as Walter Lippmann, George Creel, Edward Bernays, and other influential government advisers should make this painfully clear; western academics and politicians have learned from the mass mind manipulation techniques employed by the Nazis, and incorporated them into newer, subtler, and better techniques. Propaganda for the Masses is the first part in what I hope to be an ongoing effort designed to lift the proverbial veil of global deception. Consider the excerpts provided below and then ask your self how these might apply to the modern world:
Excerpts from Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf:
"All great movements are popular movements, volcanic eruptions of human passions and emotional sentiments, stirred either by the cruel Goddess of Distress or by the firebrand of the word hurled among the masses ... Only a storm of hot passion can turn the destinies of peoples ... It alone gives its chosen one the words which like hammer blows can open the gates to the heart of a people ...
"The function of propaganda does not lie in the scientific training of the individual, but in calling the masses' attention to certain facts, processes, necessities, etc., whose significance is thus for the first time placed within their field of vision. The whole art consists in doing this so skillfully that everyone will be convinced that the fact is real, the process necessary, the necessity correct, etc. But since propaganda is not and cannot be the necessity in itself, since its function, like the poster, consists in attracting the attention of the crowd, and not in educating those who are already educated or who are striving after education and knowledge, its effect for the most part must be aimed at the emotions and only to a very limited degree at the so-called intellect...The more modest its intellectual ballast, the more exclusively it takes into consideration the emotions of the masses, the more effective it will be...
"The art of propaganda lies in understanding the emotional ideas of the great masses and finding, through a psychologically correct form, the way to the attention and thence to the heart of the broad masses. The receptivity of the great masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous. In consequence of these facts, all effective propaganda must be limited to a very few points and must harp on these slogans until the last member of the public understands what you want him to understand [or believe]...
"The war propaganda of the English and Americans were psychologically sound. By representing the Germans to their own people as barbarians and Huns, they prepared the individual soldier for the terrors of war, and thus helped to preserve him from disappointments. After this, the most terrible weapon that was used against him seemed only to confirm what his propagandists had told him; it likewise reinforced his faith in the truth of his government's assertions, while on the other hand it increased his rage and hatred against the vile enemy For the cruel effects of the weapon, whose use by the enemy he now came to know, gradually came to confirm for him the 'Hunnish' brutality of the barbarous enemy, which he had heard all about; and it never dawned on him for a moment that his own weapons possibly, if not probably, might be even more terrible in their effects...
"The function of propaganda is, for example, not to weigh and ponder the rights of different people, but exclusively to emphasize the one right which it has set out to argue for. Its task is not to make an objective study of the truth, in so far as it favors the enemy, and then set it before the masses with academic fairness; its task is to serve our own right, always and unflinchingly...
"The broad mass of a nation does not consist of diplomats, or even professors of political law, or even individuals capable of forming a rational opinion; it consists of plain mortals, wavering and inclined to doubt and uncertainty. As soon as our own propaganda admits so much as a glimmer of right on the other side, the foundation for doubt in our own right has been laid. The masses are then in no position to distinguish where foreign injustice ends and our own begins."