One of the reasons why the Conservative assault on reality has been so effective is that many of us do not have the vocabulary to quickly articulate, and therefore understand, how we are being manipulated.
In a previous post ‘Why the ‘media is left-wing’ is one of the Conservatives’ most important lies‘ I touched on a popular Conservative tactic. They claim that right wing media is actually left wing, because it’s a way of shutting down any debate of left wing ideas, preventing their examination and spread.
I’m aware that Roger Stone has said his political modus operandi is to “Attack, attack, attack – never defend” and “Admit nothing, deny everything, and launch a counterattack.”. I’m aware of Conservative hypocrisy and their use of victimhood as a tactic – where the powerful are always the victims.
But in the post I didn’t identify the underlying strategy that the ‘media is left-wing’ lie belongs to. I didn’t identify it, partly, because I couldn’t describe it in simple language.
Owen Jones can, though. He’s written a piece about a recent example of the Conservative ‘media is left-wing’ tactic. Jones wrote about Gary Lineker being suspended by the BBC for a tweet that was critical of the Conservatives.
Jones identifies the Conservative strategy as crybullying:
“For years, emboldened rightwingers have succeeded in driving the national political conversation ever further in their direction. They’ve achieved this in two ways: first, by treating progressive political opinions as illegitimate; and second, by simultaneously claiming that it’s rightwingers who are really being silenced, a truly shameless spectacle of crybullying.”
Crybully definition: “a person who presents himself or herself as a victim of injustice in order to intimidate and manipulate others”.
It’s a simple word, powerful because it describes so much Conservative activity, much more than their ‘media is left wing’ lie.
Without political vocabulary, voters are prey to bad-faith politicians. Reminds me of an audience watching a conjurer. The audience wants to believe, and are unaware of how much work a stage conjurer will put into fooling them. To many “reasonable people”, the amount of effort the stage conjuror will expend is unreasonable which makes the trick plausible, believable. The spell is only broken when the audience can describe how they are being fooled.
Which is why it seems that Conservatives would prefer that most voters remain politically ignorant. See: “the less people have been educated the more they are likely to be positive about [Boris Johnson] or Gove downgrading citizenship lessons.
Maximilien Robespierre is supposed to have said:
“The secret of freedom lies in educating people, whereas the secret of tyranny is in keeping them ignorant.”
Why the ‘media is left-wing’ is one of the Conservatives’ most important lies
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