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Author Topic: Propaganda Today
G3
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This is how it works. You start with a huge newspaper like USA Today:
quote:
  • USA TODAY remains number one in total daily print circulation in the United States. According to the Audit Bureau of Circulations’ FAS-FAX report, USA TODAY’s daily print circulation was 1,829,099 for the period ending March 31, 2011.
  • USA TODAY is the newspaper leader in single-copy newsstand volume, selling more than 425,000 copies per day.
  • USA TODAY has one of the largest average-issue print audience of any national newspaper, with 3.2 million readers daily.

Then, you make the front page headline/story: " Gunshot wounds drive up government health care costs". (this was the front page headline story in the print edition today) For online use, put a scary graphic right at the top. In that story, you include such factoids as:
quote:
Gunshot wounds and deaths cost Americans at least $12 billion a year in court proceedings, insurance costs and hospitalizations paid for by government health programs, according to a recent study.

"I think people probably don't understand that as well as they ought to," said Ted Miller, author of a study that found that gunfire deaths and injuries incur a direct societal cost of $32 per gun.

Make it relatable:
quote:
"I was surprised," Miller said. "Back in 1994, the costs of drunk driving were substantially higher, but it has reversed.
Add in a few more numbers to make it "scientific":
quote:
He found that medical care in 2010 cost $3.2 billion for 105,177 deaths and injuries. In 1992, medical care cost $3 billion for 171,800 deaths and injuries, including 31,674 BB gun shootings, which were not included in the 2010 numbers.

According to government statistics analyzed by Miller for the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, costs to the government in 2010 broke down this way:
  • $5.4 billion in tax revenue lost because of lost work
  • $4.7 billion in court costs
  • $1.4 billion in Medicare and Medicaid costs for firearm injuries and deaths
  • $180 million in mental health care costs for gunshot victims
  • $224 million in insurance claims processing
  • $133 million for responding to shooting injuries

Miller also found that Medicaid covers 28% of hospital admissions for firearm injuries, 37% of hospital days and 42% of medical costs. But in another study, he found that even if people weren't on Medicaid when they were injured, about 8% ultimately enroll in Medicaid after their injuries. "So about half of the medical costs borne by Medicaid may be the best estimate," he said.

Finish with a call to action:
quote:
Manish Sethi, a trauma surgeon at Vanderbilt University and a researcher for the study, said his team decided to look at the numbers after seeing "a bunch of African-American kids with gunshot wounds" coming through the emergency room. "We have to do something."
Yes, that old standby "Think of the children". "We have to do something." Why, whatever could that something be?

And that's it, propaganda made simple.

Now this has gone out nationwide. The low information voters will see the front page, maybe scan it a bit and come to the pre-planned, spoon fed, inescapable conclusion "GUNS BAD", guns must go, Hulk smash.

Nowhere in this article is mention of a few salient facts:
quote:
According to the FBI, Americans use firearms in self defense 2.1 million times annually. Cases where firearms are used criminally amount to 579,000. Seventy percent of those cases are carried out by criminal repeat offenders.

<snip>
  • In the vast majority of those self-defense cases, the citizen will only brandish the gun or fire a warning shot.
  • In less than 8% of those self-defense cases will the citizen will even wound his attacker.
  • Over 1.9 million of those self-defense cases involve handguns.
  • As many as 500,000 of those self-defense cases occur away from home.
  • Almost 10% of those self-defense cases are women defending themselves against sexual assault or abuse.

No mention of the billions saved by simply brandishing a gun and preventing a assault. No mention of the lives saved or the trauma prevented. You are to come to the conclusion that such things *never* happen or such a fair and balanced media outlet would have reported it, right? Right.

Propaganda, USA Today is here to give you yet another daily dose.

[ March 05, 2013, 06:52 PM: Message edited by: G3 ]

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Wayward Son
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Linkie to quotie on firearms statistics.

Of course, he/she gets his statistics from Kentucky Concealed Carry Coalition, which just vaguely says, "These figures are compiled from the FBI's annual report on crime (Uniform Crime Reports), and from other law enforcement agencies."

So saying that this is "according to the FBI" appears to be inaccurate, since the source does not specify which statistics are from the FBI and which are from some other law enforcement agency. I would also be curious to see how these statistics were compiled, especially the one about guns only being brandished or with a warning shot fired, since I have never heard this one before.

[ March 05, 2013, 07:15 PM: Message edited by: Wayward Son ]

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G3
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Final step, call any contradictiion a lie.
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Adam Masterman
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quote:
Originally posted by G3:
Final step, call any contradictiion a lie.

Wayward works for USAToday??! [Eek!]
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AI Wessex
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"Final step, call any contradictiion a lie."

No, the final step is to accuse anyone who doesn't take what you say as gospel of committing a logical fallacy or refusing to bow down to your one-eyed view of reality.

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scifibum
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The two point something million per year stat is not from the FBI at all, but from a study done at a Floridan university. A lot of people who have done other studies think it's wildly overestimating the incidence of defensive gun usage. My first impression of the study is that the question they ask is misleading people to say they've used a gun defensively even if they only have one just in case, but haven't used it that way.

http://www.guncite.com/gcdgklec.html

[ March 05, 2013, 09:11 PM: Message edited by: scifibum ]

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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Adam Masterman:
quote:
Originally posted by G3:
Final step, call any contradictiion a lie.

Wayward works for USAToday??! [Eek!]
Ummm, no. I realize this kind of juvenile ridicule is part of what the true believers do in order to minimize if not completely shut down any dissent. Did you?
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Bud Martin
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I agree with G3, we are being spoon-fed propaganda by the media and there are no checks or balances in place to hold the news accountable for the journalistic indiscretions that they are making. They don't just put out propaganda, but they mix in the truth and misinform people to the point that the majority of us can't discern what to believe anymore.

Irrespective of this particular issue; how do you think we can stop all the spin and propaganda? It’s polarizing our society and driving our government to dysfunctionality. We need to address this problem!

Is there any method or process that we can employ to reduce this organized phenomenon that's eating away at our sense of fairness and our ability to compromise as a society?

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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
The two point something million per year stat is not from the FBI at all, but from a study done at a Floridan university. A lot of people who have done other studies think it's wildly overestimating the incidence of defensive gun usage. My first impression of the study is that the question they ask is misleading people to say they've used a gun defensively even if they only have one just in case, but haven't used it that way.

http://www.guncite.com/gcdgklec.html

Good counter point to the stats but it's beside the point isn't it? Whichever stats you want to use there are a *lot* of times where a gun is used to prevent crime and injury and USA Today did not report even the most minimal of the contradictions. You are clearly led to a conclusion that prevents you considering alternatives. Now, maybe not you specifically but I'm talking about the average public school product, low information voter.

You are not supposed to think about the other side of this, not even see it. And if anyone brings it up, the response is what you see above: call them a liar, ridicule them. The idea is to dehumanize dissenters, "otherize" them. When that fails to silence opposition, what's the next step? History is littered with examples ....

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AI Wessex
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OTOH, how should you respond to people who bring up evidence that is not reliable, and then insist that the conclusions they draw from that information should be taken as an important contribution to the discussion, and that those who object are just trying to silence opposition?

Let me simplify it for you:

1. A reports that X says Y, therefore A concludes Z.
2. B analyzes what X says about Y and determines that the information is unreliable, and therefore Z is not a reasonable conclusion.
3. A accuses B of trying to silence his opinion because B has an agenda.

You don't need to present a balanced view, but when you present only one side or a selective take of a particular source, you should expect reasonable people to push back. It is a logical fallacy to expect them to do otherwise.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Nowhere in this article is mention of a few salient facts:
Which are equally guilty of being propaganda as they're offered as absolutes without a proper comparativev context. Those numbers don't take into account the stats for comparable situations where no gun was involved or where teh presence of a gun made the situation worse rather than better, but rather use big positive sounding numbers to distract from that lack of context.

Important qualifiers on that would be things like:
In more than 50% of reported cases of self defense with a gun, the gun was actually used to escalate the situation;it's likely there would have been no self defense situation in the first place if not for the gun being used:
http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/6/4/263.full

A person who is the victim of an assault is more than 4x as likely to be shot or killed if they're carrying a gun than if they are not:
http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/full/10.2105/AJPH.2008.143099

Stand your ground policies resulting in 7-10% higher homicide rates:
http://econweb.tamu.edu/mhoekstra/castle_doctrine.pdf

For every reported use of a gun in self-defense in the home, there are 7 assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts, and 4 accidents involving guns in or around a home.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/9715182/

10 times more people were shot and killed in arguments than by civilians trying to stop a crime in 2011:
http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-11
http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-15

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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
Important qualifiers on that would be things like:
In more than 50% of reported cases of self defense with a gun, the gun was actually used to escalate the situation;it's likely there would have been no self defense situation in the first place if not for the gun being used:
http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/6/4/263.full

This one is the result of a telephone poll that has such respondents as:
quote:
For both surveys combined, a total of 146 self defense gun uses were reported by 43 people who were not police, military personnel, or security guards ...
Just who did they call? They talked to people averaging more than 3 cases of armed self defense? I'm not entirely sure what's going on with this one but this rate of gun use is very suspect. Did they call only high crime areas? Known gang members? This looks like something on the order of a push poll or something.

I'll have to take a look at the others later ...

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Wayward Son
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quote:
Final step, call any contradictiion a lie.
While denouncing mass media propoganda, you are forgetting another type of propoganda: call the opposition a liar, then disseminate your own lies. If the opposition calls you on it, just repeat they are liars and tell people to ignore what they say.

Yes, USA Today failed to mention certain aspects of the issue. But that doesn't mean your counterclaims should be taken at face value, either.

You criticize the MSM for not being "fair and balanced." But have you ever examined your facts, and the media you draw them from, to see if they are "fair and balanced?"

Or even accurate? [Wink]

Because that is one thing that really bothers me about criticism of the MSM by the Right Wing Media. They are quick to point out errors and bias in the MSM, but they do no better, and oftentimes worse, in those very respects.

MSM may not be great, but it's better than any alternative we currently have. [Frown]

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D.W.
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quote:
MSM may not be great, but it's better than any alternative we currently have.
The alternative we have is to bring up topics like this here. Your "opponents" can show you where you've been lazy and you can do the same for them. By piling together both side's propaganda and sifting through it as a group a little truth can occasionally be found.
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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:


You criticize the MSM for not being "fair and balanced." But have you ever examined your facts, and the media you draw them from, to see if they are "fair and balanced?"

Or even accurate? [Wink]


So it on to "attack the messenger!" is it?
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Adam Masterman
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quote:
Originally posted by G3:
quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:


You criticize the MSM for not being "fair and balanced." But have you ever examined your facts, and the media you draw them from, to see if they are "fair and balanced?"

Or even accurate? [Wink]


So it on to "attack the messenger!" is it?
That you see a *request* for you to critically examine your facts as an attack is telling; it more or less proves Wayward's point that you yourself are far less credible that any media source you think needs criticism. And yes, I was ridiculing you, or, at least, your self-serious tone; but be careful how flattering a reason you conjure for that ridicule.
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D.W.
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It's like a production of The Emperor's New Clothes at a nudist colony in here.
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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Adam Masterman:
quote:
Originally posted by G3:
quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:


You criticize the MSM for not being "fair and balanced." But have you ever examined your facts, and the media you draw them from, to see if they are "fair and balanced?"

Or even accurate? [Wink]


So it on to "attack the messenger!" is it?
That you see a *request* for you to critically examine your facts as an attack is telling; it more or less proves Wayward's point that you yourself are far less credible that any media source you think needs criticism. And yes, I was ridiculing you, or, at least, your self-serious tone; but be careful how flattering a reason you conjure for that ridicule.
You seem to have misunderstood quite a bit.
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Wayward Son
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No, I don't think Adam misunderstood.
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Adam Masterman
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
No, I don't think Adam misunderstood.

Maybe I misunderestimated? [Big Grin]
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Viking_Longship
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
It's like a production of The Emperor's New Clothes at a nudist colony in here.

Amen
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simplybiological
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G3, can we chat for a second?

I know I just resurrected my account after a long absence, and maybe I'm not seeing the full story here, but from what I can glean you've already got a bit of a checkered Ornery past. Let me ask a question-

What discussion are you hoping to promote by posting this?

Did you want to discuss media bias in gun reporting? Then maybe you should draw from a number of different articles or stories and pull together an argument about a persistent trend (I'm absolutely certain you could do so). One article from USA Today does not equal a trend.

Did you want someone to jump to the defense of USA Today as an outstanding news outlet? I don't think this board is the place for that discussion (thank goodness).

Did you want to begin a discussion about gun control? Then begin one. There are better ways to do so than to declare a logical victory over a poorly-researched article in a mediocre newspaper.

Did you want to discuss where the line is between an article being reporting, and being propaganda? That sounds interesting... ask that question, using this article and your analysis therein as an example.


My point is, this thread is a bit of a turd that's going nowhere, and the people on this board are capable of really high-level discussion. If you ask the question correctly, you'll get a discussion. If you ask it like this, you get... this. What is it that you're wanting?

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Bud Martin
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Here’s an interesting new take on mental illness in California. Now if you are a gun owner and have your weapons registered, no one in your residence can spend time in a mental hospital or they will come to your house and confiscate all of your weapons.

quote:
California is the only state that tracks and disarms people with legally registered guns who have lost the right to own them, according to Attorney General Kamala Harris. Almost 20,000 gun owners in the state are prohibited from possessing firearms, including convicted felons, those under a domestic violence restraining order or deemed mentally unstable.

“What do we do about the guns that are already in the hands of persons who, by law, are considered too dangerous to possess them?” Harris said in a letter to Vice President Joe Biden after a Connecticut school shooting in December left 26 dead. She recommended that Biden, heading a White House review of gun policy, consider California as a national model.

As many as 200,000 people nationwide may no longer be qualified to own firearms, according to Garen Wintemute, director of the Violence Prevention Research Program at the University of California, Davis. Other states may lack confiscation programs because they don’t track purchases as closely as California, which requires most weapons sales go through a licensed dealer and be reported...

They had better luck in nearby Upland, where they seized three guns from the home of Lynette Phillips, 48, who’d been hospitalized for mental illness, and her husband, David. One gun was registered to her, two to him.

“The prohibited person can’t have access to a firearm,” regardless of who the registered owner is, said Michelle Gregory, a spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office.


From:
Please read this article before commenting
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-03-12/california-seizes-guns-as-owners-lose-right-to-bear-arms.html?cmpid=yhoo

I bet a lot of people are going to stop going to the mental health clinics once they know that their records will eventually become public knowledge and that police could show up on your doorstep to search your premises in full view of neighbors. I know that its only done in the case of involuntary commitment, but that in and of itself is a slippery slope trying to define where the line of privacy is drawn. Looks like Hipaa might become extinct soon, for the betterment of public safety!

Future first step in destroying the life of a citizen that's too outspoken: 1) Disarm them by having any medical authority declare them mentally incompetent, any doctor or nurse will do (doesn't have to be true either) and then you can send in shock troops to search a residence, remove any weapons they might want to use for self defense and make sure they are terrorized by an overkill number of police officers to scare them with guns drawn and menacing looks.

This kind of propaganda goes hand in hand with intimidation.

[ March 12, 2013, 02:18 PM: Message edited by: Bud Martin ]

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Pete at Home
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(A little-cared about fact: During the Obama administration, government support for mental health institutions and other protections from the mentally ill has evaporated. )
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D.W.
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Well with no mental health then no guns will be taken away due to mental health reasons. A kinda depressing way to appease those against gun restrictions and a zero impact method to appease those who demand greater gun control... [Frown]
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Pete at Home
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A little bit more hope than change going on
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Wayward Son
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Did the "evaporation" of government support of mental health originated in the White House or Congress?
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Pete at Home
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I need to explain to you that Congress votes on bills and that the president signs them?

Or the concept of the bully pulpit?

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NobleHunter
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quote:
Did the "evaporation" of government support of mental health originated in the White House or Congress?
This is why I like the parliamentary system. You always know who to blame (the Tories [Wink] ).
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Viking_Longship
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quote:
1) Disarm them by having any medical authority declare them mentally incompetent, any doctor or nurse will do (doesn't have to be true either) and then you can send in shock troops to search a residence, remove any weapons they might want to use for self defense and make sure they are terrorized by an overkill number of police officers to scare them with guns drawn and menacing looks.


Defending yourself agains the police in the USA, no matter how abusively they're behaving, is regarded as both an unforgivable crime and an admission of guilt.
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Wayward Son
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quote:
I need to explain to you that Congress votes on bills and that the president signs them?

Or the concept of the bully pulpit?

Considering how little the House is bullied by the pulpit or anything else these days, I would need more details before assigning responsibility. [Smile]
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scifibum
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I'm also curious what exactly happened, not so much for knowing who to blame, but for knowing whether there's something specific I should write some letters about. (If I can overcome the overwhelming anger and sense of futility I experience when thinking about how my representatives make decisions.)
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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by simplybiological:
G3, can we chat for a second?

Sure, let's chat!

quote:
Originally posted by simplybiological:
I know I just resurrected my account after a long absence, and maybe I'm not seeing the full story here, but from what I can glean you've already got a bit of a checkered Ornery past. Let me ask a question-

I am a conservative in a liberal forum, that makes me a "other". Glean from that whatever you like.

quote:
Originally posted by simplybiological:
What discussion are you hoping to promote by posting this?

Did you want to discuss media bias in gun reporting? Then maybe you should draw from a number of different articles or stories and pull together an argument about a persistent trend (I'm absolutely certain you could do so). One article from USA Today does not equal a trend.

Did you want someone to jump to the defense of USA Today as an outstanding news outlet? I don't think this board is the place for that discussion (thank goodness).

Did you want to begin a discussion about gun control? Then begin one. There are better ways to do so than to declare a logical victory over a poorly-researched article in a mediocre newspaper.

Did you want to discuss where the line is between an article being reporting, and being propaganda? That sounds interesting... ask that question, using this article and your analysis therein as an example.

I was showing a example of how propaganda is created and promulgated in modern America. It was not about gun control or defending USA Today - there are examples of this every day in the MSM. You think this was a "a poorly-researched article in a mediocre newspaper"? It was not. It was precisely what it was planned to be and in one of the largest newspapers in the US and designed for mass consumption.

Part of this thread is to show what it looks like, educate others on how to recognize it. Some is just to discuss how propaganda works in general. I post about what interests me, if it generates discussion, great. If not, well, then on to the next topic.


quote:
Originally posted by simplybiological:
My point is, this thread is a bit of a turd that's going nowhere, and the people on this board are capable of really high-level discussion. If you ask the question correctly, you'll get a discussion. If you ask it like this, you get... this. What is it that you're wanting?

You should look at recent forum history. One of the posters upthread has a very deep and pervasive personal issue with me. He follows me from thread to thread to do nothing more than create "a bit of a turd that's going nowhere" and has a few allies that like to throw him some cover on occasion. Look around, you'll glean that too.

[ March 13, 2013, 06:57 PM: Message edited by: G3 ]

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