View Full Version : Propaganda Vs. Radical Transparency

05-30-2007, 06:07 PM
At the risk of becoming John Robb's flack around here, I thought this old post of his was very interesting:


05-30-2007, 08:13 PM
From this grain of truth, the US government/military reached (primarily due to hindsight bias re:Vietnam) the conclusion that moral conflicts are won through propaganda.
US knew this in the war in the Philippines and in ww2, everyone knows propaganda is important, always has been and always will be.
If the American (Philippines) or British public (Boer War) had know the truth about the concentration camps and forced relocations where people died it would have undermined the will of the people, so I can not agree that

A strict adherence to unvarnished truth. .
A willingness to listen to criticism and respond to it if justified.
Is the best solution. In war both sides get their hands dirty, the top 2 could easily undermine the publics will to fight (if we in the west still have this). The criticism I agree with 100%. I think JFK's manner of coming to conclusions is far superior to Bush's.

It generates dissent faster than it solidifies support.
I agree with this. I think we can all see how many differnt sources of information are around today. Bush's radio address is no where near as important as FDR's fireside chats.
Your never going to get the unity of effort you once had.

Just my thoughts

05-31-2007, 01:18 AM

In a phone interview today, Floyd—who is now director of external relations at the Center for a New Security, a Washington think tank—elaborated on what led him to abandon his career at the State Department, the only place he'd ever wanted to work.

"I'd be in meetings with other public-affairs officials at State and the White House," he recalled. "They'd say, 'We need to get our people out there on more media.' I'd say, 'It's not so much the packaging, it's the substance that's giving us trouble.' "

He recounted a phone conversation with a press officer at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad who wanted Floyd and his colleagues to sell the media more "good-news stories" about the war in Iraq. "I said, 'Fine, tell me a good-news story, I want good-news stories, too.' There was a silence on the other end of the line," he recalled. "It was like you could hear crickets chirping."

Floyd would tell his colleagues that the administration's message was drifting dangerously out of synch with reality. He was finding it increasingly difficult to place officials' op-ed pieces in serious newspapers. Few broadcast media, other than Christian radio networks, wanted to interview the department's experts, dismissing what they had to say as "more blah-blah from the State Department."

After a few recitations of these warnings, his bosses, as he put it, "started telling me to shut up. They didn't want to hear this."

06-01-2007, 09:11 PM
Nothing says we have nothing to hide, like not hiding anything.