In offering to you, my countrymen, these counsels of an old and affectionate friend, I dare not hope they will make the strong and lasting impression I could wish; that they will controul the usual current of the passions, or prevent our nation from running the course which has hitherto marked the destiny of nations. But, if I may even flatter myself that they may be productive of some partial benefit, some occasional good; that they may now and then recur to moderate the fury of party spirit, to warn against the mischiefs of foreign intrigue, to guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism; this hope will be a full recompense for the solicitude for your welfare, by which they have been dictated.––Farewell Address, September 19, 1796
We may not be able to immediately change the onslaught of manipulation from politicians and bias from the media, but we can grow in our ability to perceive the reality of words and deeds. We can learn to explain to others how to sort through truth and lies. It is vital to the well-being of our country for us to be able to withstand the use of propaganda that is continually being used to cause division, to manipulate emotions in order to gain support for dangerous policies, and to play on insecurities and fears that would maneuver Americans into letting our liberties be undermined. I’ve written a number of posts that are in the propaganda category, but this is the list of those that go through fundamental techniques. I’m sure you’ve heard of some and will recognize others.
“And don’t be afraid to see what you see.”
Ronald Reagan, Farewell Address, January 11, 1989
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