I've read, perhaps, hundreds of thousands of pages on effective communications--and as many who have read my own posts will attest--there's always room for perfecting one's own craft. (Heh.) In all those words that I've read on the subject, it really happens much more rarely than I'd like to admit that I come across something that gives me as much pause as Hedges' piece did tonight. I can honestly say that reading it has caused me to reconsider how I might do a better job with regard to communicating my political sentiments. (Again, I'm sure many who are reading this will concur! LOL!)
Here are a few graphs from it:
The Corporate Media State Has Deformed American Culture -- Time to Fight Back
By Chris Hedges, Truthdig. Posted June 30, 2009.
Progressives must embrace emotion and passion to counter the force of corporate propaganda.
The ability of the corporate state to pacify the country by extending credit and providing cheap manufactured goods to the masses is gone. The pernicious idea that democracy lies in the choice between competing brands and the freedom to accumulate vast sums of personal wealth at the expense of others has collapsed. The conflation of freedom with the free market has been exposed as a sham. The travails of the poor are rapidly becoming the travails of the middle class, especially as unemployment insurance runs out and people get a taste of Bill Clinton's draconian welfare reform. And class warfare, once buried under the happy illusion that we were all going to enter an age of prosperity with unfettered capitalism, is returning with a vengeance.
Our economic crisis -- despite the corporate media circus around the death of Michael Jackson or Gov. Mark Sanford's marital infidelity or the outfits of Sacha Baron Cohen's latest incarnation, Brüno -- barrels forward. And this crisis will lead to a period of profound political turmoil and change. Those who care about the plight of the working class and the poor must begin to mobilize quickly or we will lose our last opportunity to save our embattled democracy. The most important struggle will be to wrest the organs of communication from corporations that use mass media to demonize movements of social change and empower proto-fascist movements such as the Christian right...
...The battle ahead will be fought outside the journalistic mainstream, he said. The old forms of journalism are dying or have sold their soul to corporate manipulation and celebrity culture. We must now wed fact to rhetoric. We must appeal to reason and emotion. We must not be afraid to openly take sides, to speak, photograph or write on behalf of the disempowered. And, Ewen believes, we have a chance in the coming crisis to succeed.
"Pessimism is never useful," he said. "Realism is useful, understanding the forces that are at play. To quote Antonio Gramsci, `pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will.' "