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Is there a push by media and politicians to foster fears among the American people?

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  • Is there a push by media and politicians to foster fears among the American people?

    Interesting article about how the Politicians promote and exploit fear among us.

    http://www.politico.com/magazine/sto...ics-213386?o=0

    I know people who talk about what terrible times we live in and how our lives are in danger. I’ve actually talked to a couple of people worried about current happenings about how WWII and the US Civil War were so much worse. The people pause for a moment and then agree and then go on to talk more about the horrors that we are living through. My mother was a great worrier—and she lost a lot of sleep over all sorts of imagined catastrophes. I just don’t let myself get too worked up over remote possibilities.

    The only times that I have feared for my life, or been convinced that I was going to die, has been in bad weather, and I don’t even blame that on global warming—it’s just weather that is just a condition of living on earth. I have leaky basement walls during bad rains so I worry more about damage to the house from that than I do bombings and shellings or rioting arsonists. I have more personal fears about a couple of dangerous intersections in town that I go through often and about big trucks running over my car on the highway than I do about being shot down by terrorists or shooters in theaters (and I go to the movies quite a bit). I realized during a tornado that I lived through that God can take me at time in any way that He chooses, and that it is pointless to let my enjoyment of life get waylaid by fear.

    What terrible thing has happened to you lately aside from traffic and weather that convinces you that we are living in terrible and dangerous times, maybe the worst times ever? Do you believe there is a big push by the media and politicians on fearful thinking?
    Last edited by Jannie; 27 Dec 15, 12:18.
    Homo homini lupus

  • #2
    I don't think their intent is to foster fear, but both parties are engaged in a sick power struggle with no regard for the United States or its citizens. The boutique media model where we can all get news suited to our political leanings only adds to it, and some of their tripe is far closer to propaganda that legitimate news. For Politico to lay blame only to right wing politicians only supports this. Both parties are responsible.

    I wouldn't say that fear is really the right word. From my perspective, its closer to a national state of anxiety and distrust that the political parties and media are fostering. My supervisors that use the 'divide and conquer' leadership style have always been my weakest and most ineffective leaders.

    I'd even go a little further to say that the political parties and media have to be responsible, to some degree, for some of these shootings and lower level instances of conflict, though its impossible to prove or measure their impact. When you tell people their way of life is threatened and that the person next to them is to blame, that's going to be a trigger for conflict in some people.

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    • #3
      Exactly why I don't watch tv news.
      Credo quia absurdum.


      Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Biscuit View Post
        I don't think their intent is to foster fear, but both parties are engaged in a sick power struggle with no regard for the United States or its citizens. The boutique media model where we can all get news suited to our political leanings only adds to it, and some of their tripe is far closer to propaganda that legitimate news. For Politico to lay blame only to right wing politicians only supports this. Both parties are responsible.
        You are correct on the right wing thing and the article does indict the left on some fears as well--Global Warming being the biggest. But it was mainly on the second page of the article. I removed Right Wing from the topic headline. Thanks.
        Homo homini lupus

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Jannie View Post
          Interesting article about how the Politicians promote and exploit fear among us.

          http://www.politico.com/magazine/sto...ics-213386?o=0

          I know people who talk about what terrible times we live in and how our lives are in danger. I’ve actually talked to a couple of people worried about current happenings about how WWII and the US Civil War were so much worse. The people pause for a moment and then agree and then go on to talk more about the horrors that we are living through. My mother was a great worrier—and she lost a lot of sleep over all sorts of imagined catastrophes. I just don’t let myself get too worked up over remote possibilities.

          The only times that I have feared for my life, or been convinced that I was going to die, has been in bad weather, and I don’t even blame that on global warming—it’s just weather that is just a condition of living on earth. I have leaky basement walls during bad rains so I worry more about damage to the house from that than I do bombings and shellings or rioting arsonists. I have more personal fears about a couple of dangerous intersections in town that I go through often and about big trucks running over my car on the highway than I do about being shot down by terrorists or shooters in theaters (and I go to the movies quite a bit). I realized during a tornado that I lived through that God can take me at time in any way that He chooses, and that it is pointless to let my enjoyment of life get waylaid by fear.

          What terrible thing has happened to you lately aside from traffic and weather that convinces you that we are living in terrible and dangerous times, maybe the worst times ever? Do you believe there is a big push by the media and politicians on fearful thinking?
          There are three things that our government currently pushes constantly as a source of fear mongering to Americans:
          1. Terrorists
          2. Gun violence
          3. The Climate

          Comment


          • #6
            I saw a report some time back that people who watch the worst news videos as they play over and over again on the news can negatively impact their mental health. of course, as the news reported this they played images of the Twin Towers collapsing. I'd agree with on the non-political fears as well causing anxiety.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Biscuit View Post
              I don't think their intent is to foster fear, but both parties are engaged in a sick power struggle with no regard for the United States or its citizens. The boutique media model where we can all get news suited to our political leanings only adds to it, and some of their tripe is far closer to propaganda that legitimate news. For Politico to lay blame only to right wing politicians only supports this. Both parties are responsible.

              I wouldn't say that fear is really the right word. From my perspective, its closer to a national state of anxiety and distrust that the political parties and media are fostering. My supervisors that use the 'divide and conquer' leadership style have always been my weakest and most ineffective leaders.

              I'd even go a little further to say that the political parties and media have to be responsible, to some degree, for some of these shootings and lower level instances of conflict, though its impossible to prove or measure their impact. When you tell people their way of life is threatened and that the person next to them is to blame, that's going to be a trigger for conflict in some people.
              When you get a chance, watch "The American President" starring Michael Douglas. There is a scene in there in which he explains exactly how this "fear mongering" concept works, including the punchline where he explains that politicians tell you who is to blame for it.

              Think about what Obama is trying to push right now - climate change as a global catastrophe even more important to Americans than jobs, a terrible economy, racism, domestic violence on an unheard of scale, millions of illegal criminals flooding our nation, drugs, human trafficking and all of our other social ills...but he's pushing "climate" as most threatening.

              Politics is all about selling perceptions, Biscuit, and about making people afraid, because fearful people become malleable and easily led....and controlled.

              The question isn't "does the government lie?" The real question is "does the government ever tell the truth?"

              Comment


              • #8
                MM - Agreed on all points. I think about that scene in the American President a lot. I didn't agree with the character's politics for the most part, but I absolutely enjoyed his ethics. I worry about where the country is going when people hang on politicians' words and believe what the media pedals (especially when the only watch one outlet). If nothing's on and when I run on the treadmill, I balance things out a little by watching CNN and Fox. MSNBC is so far to the left that I have a little trouble with them. I also try to avoid the editorial/opinion types like Bill O'Reilly and Rachel Maddow. How are they both so very intelligent and pedaling a mostly one-sided interpretation of what's happening in the world? My only reasonable conclusion is that they are sellouts, and who can trust someone who compromises their intellect to knowingly mislead people less intelligent than themselves with the natural outcome of destabilizing the country via misinformation.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Douglas MacArthur warned us about this back in the 50's so it isn't that new.

                  It is part of the general pattern of misguided policy that our country is now geared to an arms economy which was bred in an artificially induced psychosis of war hysteria and nurtured upon an incessant propaganda of fear
                  Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/au...3gXAZULIJ8w.99

                  Seems like he was far seeing

                  Our government has kept us in a perpetual state of fear - kept us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervor - with the cry of grave national emergency.

                  http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/au...3gXAZULIJ8w.99
                  "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                  Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                  you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
                    There are three things that our government currently pushes constantly as a source of fear mongering to Americans:
                    1. Terrorists
                    2. Gun violence
                    3. The Climate
                    The government is a reflection of who's in office when it comes to issues. Obama is a Progressive Leftist so the issues getting more attention are Progressive Leftist ones, from that perspective.

                    Terrorism is something of an outlier on that list. It gets on because it's a genuine threat even as the administration tries to downplay its significance. Gun control and Gorebal Warming are both Progressive issues.

                    In general, the current administration is pushing the Social and Economic Justice agenda of the Left. When Obama is out of office, the next administration will push their agenda and the direction of discussion and what's important will shift to those topics. Obama is irrelevant in less than a year. I do think he'll go down in history as a mediocre president at best. Who replaces him really has only to half try to do better than he did.

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                    • #11
                      Geez, I kind of miss "World Communist Domination" as a threat. I guess that it's just nostalgia...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Biscuit View Post
                        MM - Agreed on all points. I think about that scene in the American President a lot. I didn't agree with the character's politics for the most part, but I absolutely enjoyed his ethics. I worry about where the country is going when people hang on politicians' words and believe what the media pedals (especially when the only watch one outlet). If nothing's on and when I run on the treadmill, I balance things out a little by watching CNN and Fox. MSNBC is so far to the left that I have a little trouble with them. I also try to avoid the editorial/opinion types like Bill O'Reilly and Rachel Maddow. How are they both so very intelligent and pedaling a mostly one-sided interpretation of what's happening in the world? My only reasonable conclusion is that they are sellouts, and who can trust someone who compromises their intellect to knowingly mislead people less intelligent than themselves with the natural outcome of destabilizing the country via misinformation.
                        Add to that electronic ballots... I may seem a Luddite in that respect, but the last election cycle ended up with a straight out 75% democrat line up in CA.

                        Come on. Look at the statistics, Demographics and all that and tell me that wasn't rigged.
                        Credo quia absurdum.


                        Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Biscuit View Post
                          I saw a report some time back that people who watch the worst news videos as they play over and over again on the news can negatively impact their mental health. of course, as the news reported this they played images of the Twin Towers collapsing. I'd agree with on the non-political fears as well causing anxiety.
                          This is a well known phenomenon within media studies. People who watch tv news constantly can possess a much more negative and fearful outlook because of the prevailance of negative stories.

                          Though ironically, negative stories are what interests people more.

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                          • #14
                            Bad news sells, good news does not.

                            That's as old as the written word.
                            Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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                            • #15
                              Well Jamie, I think its not fear so much as it is a protest against the Govt deliberately doing what is can to put us in more danger.
                              Divisive policy at home.
                              Trying to draw in as many potential terrorists as possible.
                              Trying to mask terror as "workplace violence" and so on.
                              Energy policies and GW nonsense to make energy unaffordable in the long run.
                              And a host of others.

                              If there is growing fear out there, its not just that the current regime is hostile to most Americans... that comes and goes. But it you want to see real hysteria, watch and see how the growing realization that the US Govt is incompetent and out of touch with reality itself hits home.
                              THAT will be something to see...

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