This week on Sunday Letters I’m discussing the subject of propaganda, of public relations. I’m looking at the practice undertaken by corporations and governments the world over to engineer the consent of the masses towards their aims. Download the 1928 book titled; Propaganda, by the controversial figure, Edward L. Bernays.
The word “fuck” is emotive. Associations people hold with the word often mean it causes an affront to their morality and ethical ideas around the proper use of language. I heard it said that writers who use fuck in their work have little inherent ability.
Challenging authority at all levels is vital in our building of a healthy society. And for the creative, there is hardly a greater imperative. In systems of education, national and local government, in work environments, sports clubs and organisations. Wherever there are those who would assume authority over others there must be those who are willing to challenge them no matter what.
There’s a new religion taking hold. In fact, there are many of them, lurking in the minds of righteous and well-meaning people. In my country, Ireland, the unobstructed march of the righteous, initially well-meaning in their pursuits, ultimately brought about the exact opposite to that which they preached. The Catholic church and their unconscious disciples held high the moral benchmark for society. So high, in fact, none of us could reach it.
The mere exposure effect says I can manipulate you easily. I want to cleverly influence you towards doing what I want without you so much as suspecting I’m a crafty bastard. You’re asleep at the wheel you see and ripe for this manipulation. I have an agenda and I intend to act purposefully to get what I want from this transaction.
I was sitting in bed one night, my back against the tall solid wood headboard when suddenly it occurred to me the complete inadequacy of the words I had just spoken. My wife and I were discussing something trivial, I can’t remember what it was now, it doesn’t really matter anyway. I was in no doubt that right there, the words we just uttered were pointless, even primitive.
Having a family is a challenge right? The Joy of being a parent can’t be overstated I feel, but it can be challenging. We leave behind the freedom of the single life to have a family but it’s worth the sacrifice. I wonder though in that, is it really a sacrifice at all.