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Simcountry is an Online Digital World where you are the President of a country.
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You lost the war...

Simcountry: Simcountry Bulletin Board  You lost the war...

Jarren (Fearless Blue)

Saturday, April 30, 2005 - 07:40 pm Click here to edit this post
A few messages have been posted regarding the access of people in some societies to `the truth`. This is a little problematic as it assumes that what they beleive which is different to what we beleive is wrong for that reason alone. The reason for this is often put down to propaganda (theirs) or ignorance (theirs).

The most effective propaganda is the lies by ommision comitted by society as a whole, not the lies of government. We do not like to hear tales that put us in a bad light. We learn by the books we read, the people we listen to, and the TV we watch, but what is in those books, and the tales people tell, and the news on TV is only ever a fraction of the whole. Which fraction it is, is determined by the people responsible for the books/tales/shows, and reflects the assumptions and prejudices of the society from which they come.

If a news program had a story that was important, but would cause people to switch off, or disbeleive because it contradicted their world view, would they show it. The more modern a society, the more in tune to the needs of its audience the media will be, and the more likely to finetune content, in other words, better and more accurately representing a particular viewpoint (liberal and conservative being different ends of the one viewpoint)

This is true of every society, not just the US. The full speech by Benjamin Franklin following the implementation of the constitution, famous in its day, is now little known (it states that the constitution provides what the US needs in the short term, but in the long term will result in the the collapse of the US as the people indulge their ultimate desire for despotism), does anyone wonder why it isnt in the text books (I apologise for the rough paraphrasing, I am dredging it up from memory).

There was a program on the life story of an Australian peace activist a couple of years ago (he was an elderly German gentleman who was in the Waffin SS during world war 2), he spent 18 months in a camp after the war in which almost half the prisoners died of mistreatment (I never heard of Germans dying in allied concentration camps before).

The primary motivation for the activists in the American war of independance was the fact that the English Government had decided to treat the indian tribes as if they were sovereign nations, and this meant preventing Englishman in the colonies (Americans) from taking their land, and therefore the English had to go (taxation without representation is a tariff, and was and is perfectly legitimate. The English spent over twice in developing the colonies what they took out, the Boston massacre was a newspaper figment, 1 person died, and they were trampled by a panicked crowd etc - all justifications). The letters of the founders of the constitution make it clear that land was the real issue. Again not in textbooks.

When Kruschev visited the US, he commented that it was ironic that the US feard Russia, when Russians had never fought a war in the US, but the US had gone to Russia to fight a war. Most Americans didnt know what he was talking about (US forces with other allies fought in Russia after world war 1 in support of white russian forces against the reds), how did they forget a whole war - if it doesnt make the books or the TV, and no one talks about it, how can you know?

The reason everyone hates the US, is we are saturated with the American view of us, and the American view of America (the whole world as villain, or desperate victim in need of rescue by the gallant and ever virtuous US), but the reverse is not true, Americans do not really get to see how other countries view themselves, or the US.

In this scenario, and the world being a large complex place, mutually contradictory viewpoints are not necessarily mutually exclusive, they can both be true, just a different bit of the truth.

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