Friday, March 31, 2006

Propaganda defined

Marge Kaiser opens some eyes with Propaganda defined:
The following is a list of propaganda techniques from a high school political science textbook: "American Government, 1998," published by Educational Design, chapters 37-39.
Definition: "Propaganda: ideas designed to influence opinion and behavior."
Glittering generalizations:
Vague generalizations that sound good. Example: "Cause X is for freedom and justice."
The polls show that everyone agrees with Cause X.
Famous people such as movie stars vouch for Cause X.
Plain Folks:
The person promoting the idea says "I'm plain folk, just like you."
Name Calling:
Discount the opposition by labeling.
Stacking the deck:
Exaggeration, telling only part of the truth, bending the truth, oversimplifying the truth.
I wonder which journalism class teaches these techniques.
(and I wonder if any course leader could make use of some modern-day examples )

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