O brother, my Brother! What a great treatment of a method of managing electorates I've been calling *myth-jacking.*
Myth is not synonymous with lie; a myth is a metaphorical image of the composition and functioning of the cosmos. The power of myth is to shape the world in which we are enacting this wholly absurd theater of life.
Remember Rummy's myth-jacking memos?
"This mixing of Crusades-like messaging with war imagery, which until now has not been revealed, had become routine. "
National myths deliver us as a people into our Promised or Waste Land, exactly as we load them with our intentions: passengers into life boats, or kittens into burlap sacks?
Our myths, our shared narratives, are as indispensable as a mother's womb.
Benign or malign, either way we get taken for a ride. As Americans, we need to direct our own passage, but we aren't educated and socialized to be self-sovereign citizens.
Instead, we're taught to be loyal subjects, fans, of a political master of a mechanical universe; to shut up and do as we're told; to demonstrate our loyalty by our fervor when presented with patriotic symbols.
We're trained, like pigeons in Skinner boxes, to go kill or die at the whim of an imperious president "for god, king, and country," just like the good old days.
For example: We were jacked to war by myths of Iraqi WMDs. The myths themselves were the WMDs.
In this way, the power of myth is being used to power weapons-grade domestic propaganda.
Our myth says: God loves us the most, that's why we're destined to rule the earth forever, amen. God bless America! (God damn the rest of you.)
Since we're doing the work of the Big Guy Upstairs, says the myth, we can do no wrong; likewise, anyone who opposes us also opposes God, making them 'evil-doers' of whom we are duty bound to rid the world.
Factual arguments, however well phrased, often fail to move electorates, but the power of myth never fails