There have been many concerning events taking place in Britain over the last few years, and what is of particular interest to me is how it has been received by the public, which in some cases has either forgotten about, or simply ignored some very serious issues. In a tradition stretching from Edward Bernays, governments and corporations have long used tested methods to control what the public are exposed to, and ultimately what they can think and feel: ‘If you can be told what you can see or read, then it follows that you can be told what you can say or think’. These people control far more than we think from their steel framed buildings, and if we make it easier for them they would only be grateful.
Edward Bernays was a nephew of Sigmund Freud, who although was much more famous was by no means more influential than his nephew. Edward Barnays was the founder of public relations, and he basically brought about the discovery of advertising and how the human mind is very impressionable if something is presented in a certain way. This still plays a huge part of how we live today in the age of advertising and how we read news, most of which comes from Rupert Murdoch’s papers which are a massive part of how we receive news.
How do they get away with it?
The biggest revelation to come out recently has to be what Snowden revealed, not only about how our governments are spying on us, but also how information is shared by governments of the world – interestingly showing how Israel is the only country to receive raw data from the US as a pose to the filtered information that others such as Britain receive, however this is only of interest when considering how America appears to be trying to reach some kind of peaceful solution to the war going on there.
Firstly, why would our government want to spy on us when I think it is safe to assume that not all of us pose a threat to society other than some kind of reason that follows in the vein of Bernays. If you do not believe so, then perhaps the fact that it has been largely swept under the carpet and forgotten about does serve to show how much what we think about is influenced by the news we read, and which is undeniably connected by politics.
Consider Rupert Murdoch, the biggest news mogul in the world owning the majority of newspapers in Britain, incidentally including the only ones that consider a pair of breasts newsworthy, namely The Sun, the late News of the World, and The Times, as well as major ones in America.
The power these papers have over the public is incredible, and highly financially and politically motivated. All politicians including Tony Blair know that their success largely depends on public opinion which is easily moved and altered by these papers, so in order to achieve success they are going to have to make a deal with Murdoch and receive his personal favour.
It has been incredibly shocking to see the support that UKIP raised and how people started to feel comfortable being overtly racist in the streets; the careful cherry picking of those on benefits and immigrants to portray the poor and immigrants as lazy thieves who want to work off of your living. This is the perfect excuse to divert money from benefits and other public sectors to other areas such as the £1bn increase in spending on nuclear weapons and other more profitable and shady areas.
It was not long ago while doing work at a school in a poor area that I heard the teacher put down the children’s ambitions to become footballers, actors, whatever, telling them that these dreams are unachievable instead it is a far better idea to literally stack shelves in Tesco. The amount of social ordering that goes on under our noses is incredible – and the most shocking of it all is that we are a part of it.