Hello , I am an ex Scientologist , this blog is primarily about that but I may address other topics as the mood hits me to . I was in Scientology for 25 years and spent about 10,000 hours using the indoctrination and thought reform method "study tech " . I also spent time on staff and met hundreds of Scientologists and did hundreds of the cult practices . Many were the "ethics cycles and OW writeups " that really are an attempt to suppress or remove a person's identity and replace it with a mental pseudo clone of Ron Hubbard . To make a fanatical slave for the cult .

I looked outside the cult for answers in about January 2014 and left the cult in about March of 2014 . While in about 99% of members have no idea of the truth .

We are told we are in a mental therapy or spiritual enhancement or religion or science for helping people unlock potential . Or any of several other fronts that all pretend kind and humanitarian goals .

The truth is Scientology is a terrorist mind control cult and this blog is my attempt to understand and expose that . And try to state as clearly as possible the tools that I have found helpful in dealing with this .

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 6 Propaganda: 7 Most Important Techniques Of Propaganda

Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 6 Propaganda: 7 Most Important Techniques of Propaganda

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 Any good critical thinker needs at least a passing knowledge of propaganda techniques. At least learning the most prevalent ones and some history of the subject. 

Propaganda: 7 Most Important Technique of Propaganda

Psychological Warfare:

As said Propaganda as a means to influence people is not something new. It is as old as the human group and has been employed at all times and on all cultural levels. It is, however, during the First World War that it was employed as a scientifically planned means of influencing people, as a formidable psychological weapon.
Thereafter, it was constantly perfected, reaching a high point in Nazi Germany. During the Second World War, both the sides again made use of propaganda. There was a “psychological war” or “war of nerves”. Every major belligerent systematically employed political propaganda and control of news as a weapon of warfare and. psychological warfare was recognized and accepted as a military instrument.
Psychological warfare is “the use of propaganda against an enemy through the employment of modern media of mass communications, together with such other operational measures and devices of a military, economic or political nature as may be required to supplement propaganda for the purpose of reaching mass audiences in order to persuade them to accept certain beliefs and ideas.”
It is used to undermine the enemy’s resistance, to dissuade neutrals from joining the other side, or to encourage friends and others. During the Second World War it was everywhere realized that the psychological warfare was at least as important as physical combat.
The value of psychological warfare as a technique of propaganda is as yet unknown. Soreno points out that “this kind of warfare depends on the skill and ability of the warrior to understand the problems of the enemy or target people and their patterns of thought and action, and to affect them with all the means at his disposal. He also feels that psychological warfare helps political leaders to camouflage reality and to dodge responsibility.

Instruments of Propaganda:

Propaganda today has become a science as well as an art; individuals specialize in it as a profession. Though propaganda may also be utilized for educational and public welfare purposes, but this constructive kind of propaganda has hardly been so far properly utilized. It is usually carried on to serve the interests of groups rather than the general public.
Alfred M. Lee and Elizabeth B. Lee classified the propaganda devices into seven major categories:
(i) name-calling (ii) Glittering generalities, (iii) transfer, (iv) testimonial, (v) Plain-folk, (vi) Card-stacking and (vii) Bandwagon. Each of these devices makes an appeal to feelings rather than to reason. They rest upon the premise that emotion or feeling has certain strategic advantages over the appeal to reason. These propaganda devices need not be used singly; they are usually employed in combination.
To these devices Alfred M. Lee later added: Guilty-by-Association and Guilty-by-Heredity and their opposites, Virtue-by-Association and Virtue-by-Heredity. He also analysed the “techniques of basic procedure” used by the propagandist. These include: Selecting the issue: Case making; and simplification.
A brief discussion of the above seven techniques are as follows: 

(i) Name-calling:

This technique consists in giving a bad name to a person, a group, an idea or an event. The name so given arouses an emotional attitude of hostility and rejection. The terms “capitalist,” “fascist,” war-monger”, “right-reactionary” create an emotional attitude of hatred toward the person. Thus, J.P. Narayan was called by the Congress leaders a right reactionary and the B.J.P. has been called after the Ayodhya incident a fascist party and a communal organisation.

(ii) Glittering Generally:

Under this technique the propagandist uses some attractive or impressive words or ideas which mislead the people. He may call his party “the protector of Hinduism” or the “saviour of dalits” or use the words like secularism, equality, justice, democracy to influence the public.

(iii) Transfer Device:

In this device, the propagandist presents his cause as an integral part of a larger cause by identifying himself and his cause with the collective representation acceptable to the public at large. Thus, to safeguard “people’s democracy” the communists condemn all non-communists as “counter- revolutionaries.” The Congress invokes the name of Gandhi in order to bolster its position. The opposition parties use the word ‘secularism’ to defeat the Bhartiya Janta Party.

(iv) Testimonial Device:

Under this technique the propagandist advertises a thing with the name of some distinguished person. Thus the name of a film actor Ashok Kumar may be used for selling ‘Paan Parag’.

(v) Plain-folk Device:

This device is used extensively by politicians. The politician professes that he is just like others, with their common virtues and vices. Thus a leader may embrace a child in a slum area or take his lunch sitting with the slum dwellers on a mat to impress upon them that he is one of them.

(vi) Card Tactics:

This device requires skill and ingenuity. The true facts are twisted and coloured by the propagandist to suit his interest and impress his listeners. Thus, a politician may weave a story and present it as a true event.

(vii) Band-wagon:

Under this technique the propagandist advertises that since everybody is doing a thing, therefore, you may as well do it. Thus, the advertisement, “Five crores of people in India are using Alias bicycle so you also should have it today” is a band-wagon technique.
The following are a few guide-lines for a propagandist:
Firstly, repeat your idea persistently and systematically. Even falsehood, when presented incessantly, begins to appear as truth. So never be tired of repeating your side time and again.
Secondly, do not admit, do not even suggest that there is any side to the question but that one you represent. In other words, you must distort the evidence.
Thirdly, cast your cause in the role of the hero, and your opposition in the role of the villain. Resort to generalities, emolionalised symbols and stereotypes. Prove the high-mindedness, nobility and humaneness of your cause, and at the same time, demonstrate the low motives, ignoble deeds and self-seeking activities of the opposition,
Fourthly, produce testimonials on behalf of your cause, supplied by persons whose names carry a great deal of weight, such as the president of the country or a famous actor,
Fifthly, to get the most permanent eventual results your propaganda targets should be children, mix your belief in the educational curriculum. This is what totalitarian states mostly do.
But as said above, all these are methods employed by the propagandist who to serve the interests of their groups try to influence the people. In such propaganda lie as a weapon has a definite value. The Propaganda Ministry of the Third Reich used the lie successfully for several purposes. The Soviets had developed a highly skillful technique of propaganda which was their basic instrument for propagating communism abroad. The effective propaganda of the Reds was an important cause of their success.
To emphasize again, scientifically speaking propaganda is neither bad nor good. According to Katherine Gerould “propaganda is a good word gone wrong.”

The goodness or badness of propaganda depends upon what cause the particular group propounds. An American may regard a cause propounded by the Soviet as wrong.
Anyhow, the fact remains that, in modern times, even a right cause unless defended by propaganda, is virtually certain to be lost or crippled. Therefore, even a democratic state must not make itself defenseless in the field of opinion, it must meet propaganda with propaganda, pitting the correct and justified against the false and negative.

I recently completed a long series of blog posts on something many of us encourage but rarely actually discuss - critical thinking. It's essential to good reason and in my personal opinion recovery from the harm Scientology and other cults do. Here's the entire series.
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 1 Looking at Both Sides
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 2 Logical Fallacies and Biases
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 3 Paul-Elder Critical Thinking Framework
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 4 Being A Pain In The Ass
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 5 Show The Work
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 6 Propaganda: 7 Most Important Techniques of Propaganda
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 7 Rhetoric and Sublime Writing
Cornerstones of Critical Thinking 8 We Learn Together

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