Be wary of the political class that wants to “re-educate” the masses and the “debates” piloted on social networks

Between a wheeled bench and a designer mask, between a flash-mob and the beheading of harmless statues, our action intellectuals who flock to the category of "progressives" seem to have understood all that we, derelict stupid ones, have not really assimilated . In the country where an important minister – who would prefer to be called "minister" – talks about the need to establish a "patnerscippi" (sic) with other countries that overlook the Mediterranean and very few are the innovations that make us jump on the chair – fortunately of most, still without wheels – when we witness the presentation of their "cultural revolutions". The prevailing theorem is the following: 1. are we unable to manage the general situation in the country decently? 2. It is the fault of the Italians. 3. We change the minds of Italians by adapting them to our solutions. It goes without saying that wherever you talk about re-educating anyone, the decisive role is that of the re-educator. However, it is the “re-” particle that raises far more than one doubt, if not more than one fear. They were content to "educate" very little, indeed, education in all its forms would be welcome, at least as long as we are given a choice by whom to receive it. But the concept of "re-education" , sometimes even foolishly used as it is, by the saviors of the homeland, brings to mind historical periods and movements that, all without distinction, ended up in blood. Francois "Papa Doc" Duvalier, the Haitian dictator who, from 1958 to 1970 armed the Tonton Macoutes to exterminate anyone he believed to be an opponent, also had the fix of re-educating the population of the island of which he proclaimed himself president. For the sake of completeness, we note that another statesman of the twentieth century also wrote: "Effective propaganda must be limited to a few slogans hammered continuously until they enter the heads and fix themselves firmly"; I do not pay, he added: “The masses do not know what to do with freedom and, having to bear the weight, they feel abandoned. They only admire strength. " Suffice it to recall that he wore a Charlot mustache and wrote "Mein Kampf" .

In short, nothing new, when we hear, today more than ever, of the need to propose a generalized change of mentality, as the scheme of the theorem above would seem to suggest. If anything, we could say that its first point is neglected, the one that starts from the ascertainment of the inability to govern the real situation of the country. Mass re-education is not based today on propaganda alone, but the goal to be pursued is always the same. If at the time of Hitler or Pope Doc it was regime propaganda, that is, our local Minculpop – and never an acronym was more apt – today we have other tools, more subtle and pervasive. Where propaganda alone no longer has decisive effects, especially due to the pulverization of information sources, the widespread diffusion of the "right mentality" is today mainly conveyed by social media, which, at least in theory, should start from the bottom, from the people. In fact, with all due respect to Pavlov and his conditioned reflexes that he studied on dogs, the input to the media debate never starts from the bottom, but from the very established power, which wants to make people believe that this or that need of citizens starts from them themselves, while in reality it has been skillfully piloted. A fervent population of telematic mugs not even realizes that they have been cleverly prodded in the media to provoke that "debate" (the double b is not a misprint) that they wanted to arouse to justify measures that are not always welcome or correct. The excuse of the people, who would always be right, what the reform requires loudly is pathetic but still effective, as was the "Gott mit uns" , a century ago.

While considering that "the people" are not infrequently rotten wrong, simply because they do not know certain issues thoroughly, we must also recognize that the individual person, considered individually, has other priorities (bills to pay, tax collection files, work that not always c 'is …) and is only marginally interested in the political debate, while maintaining a propensity to share any movement that proposes to change a status quo that does not satisfy at all. Precisely in that shaded area of ​​very pragmatic but fatalistic Italians, always looking for a new charismatic leader who takes us out of the Buriana, the germ of zero-cost propaganda finds the ideal breeding ground, the one that the recipients of the same do at without their knowledge, pushing theories read by chance on social networks, never studied or verified, considered valid or incorrect according to the "likes" they obtained. It is no longer necessary to launch the flyers from the biplane as D'Annunzio did and little would get the persuasive voice of Colonel Stevens today from Radio London . All stuff from the past. Today the propaganda in favor of the government in turn is made by us, if they are astutely turned on and fed, because we do not wait for the moment to have our say, a bit about everything. What about counter-propaganda? Same mechanism: just a tweet or a post on Facebook to trigger the delusion of social media. Then one wonders again why Zuckerberg, Dorsey, Bezos are among the most influential men on the planet. But, notice it: and the note is not insignificant, it is not the personal ideas of this or that patron of social media that makes the difference. We do that, launching ourselves into the never genuine social and political campaigns of social media, helping to spread "whatever", as the Albanian comedian would say. The conditioned reflexes of Ivan Pavlov's dogs were theorized in the late nineteenth century, but then there were no social networks.

The post Be wary of the political class that wants to "re-educate" the masses and the "debates" piloted on social media appeared first on the Daily Atlantic .

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Atlantico Quotidiano at the URL on Sat, 01 Aug 2020 04:06:00 +0000.