It is sad to see that even after the greatest information technological revolution, propaganda still has a big role to form people’s opinion and even control their behaviour. It is even sadder to see that the influence is not only on political views but goes down to the basic daily life decisions. All these happen even after so many information platforms are readily available at one’s fingertips.
Throughout the years and due to limited sources of information the media, mostly radio and newspapers, have been the source of information. The basic idea of this was to inform and this made it powerful because the one who controls information controls the masses.
At some point though, some intellectuals such as Joseph Goebbels and Edward Bernays saw an opportunity. They saw a window of opportunity not only for influence but control. They have figured that lies, repeated a million times, becomes the truth. These eventually became the cemented ideology of mass media to use propaganda as a tool to influence and sway opinions, perceptions and behaviours towards a favourable social outcome.
This is clearly the case we are seeing today with, especially the western mainstream media. It has so much established itself as the embodiment of the truth and would propagate narrative to mostly influence certain political outcomes. They have done so much sensitisation to the point where one cannot, for example, imagine life without the news and be up to date.
It has gotten so bad that real journalism in western mainstream media has died and all that is there is activist masquerading as journalists. There are no longer legitimate and truthful house media but propaganda engineering organisations. What most people are unaware of is that this propaganda and opinion-manufacturing houses are owned by people with not only big money but agendas as well.
All this power gives them more leverage on what narrative to run to influence an outcome only favourable to them.
Evidently, television has become one powerful mind control and social engineering tool. In other words, subjecting oneself either to brief moments or non-stop television viewing can be compared to the same as handing over one’s mind into another’s hand to program it on how it should operate.
The time spent watching television deprives one of the real and meaningful life experiences. It is the time that could be spent on activities that have an immediate incremental impact on the livelihood of an individual – like learning a skill that could even translate into an extra source of income.
The television situation is even worse for kids. Subjecting minors to non-stop television viewing can almost be compared to exposing minors to unknown entities. This is because of the evidence that, nowadays, even children’s programs are infiltrated with indecent subliminal messages. The saying “get them while they are young” is even more real. As a result, there is a greater sense of disconnect between parents and their children.
It is no surprise that many parents think there is something amiss with the new generation compared to theirs. At the same time, the same parents do not even once get to think that it could be their mishap. The mishap that because of this ever-demanding world; they are too busy working and hand the kids over to the worst babysitter – television.
So, the question is who forms your opinions and perspective? Is it out of your curiosity in moments of solitude and self-reflection or from the social engineering agenda? Are your child’s rebellious behaviours really of their own or subliminal messages from invisible entities? Perhaps, as Bob Dylan said, the answer is blowing in the wind.
By Karlos TheGreat
OSHIMWENYO is published every Friday in the New Era newspaper with contributions from Karlos Naimwhaka.