KONY 2012: State Propaganda for a New Generation
The overnight viral sensation KONY 2012 brought worldwide awareness to the African war criminal Joseph Kony. Beneath this commendable cause, lies however an elaborate agenda that is presented in the video in a very manipulative way. We’ll look at the agenda behind KONY 2012 and how it uses reverse psychology to not only justify a military operation in Africa, but to actually have people demand it.
KONY 2012 is a viral sensation that swept the entire world in less than 24 hours. Its main subject is the African rebel leader Joseph Kony, his war crimes and the clearly defined “movement” to stop him. Countless celebrities have endorsed the movement, news sources have reported it and social media is buzzing with it. While the problem of guerrilla warfare and child soldiers has plagued Africa for decades, and several documentaries have already been produced regarding the issue, this particular 29-minute video made managed to obtain mass exposure and support.
KONY 2012 is less of a documentary than it is a highly efficient infomercial that is tailor-made for the Facebook generation, using state-of-the-art marketing techniques to make its point. Young people like “underground movements” and want to feel like they are changing the world. KONY 2012 taps into these needs to bring about something that is not “hip” or “underground” at all: A military operation in Uganda. Not only that, it urges the participants of the movement to order stuff, to wear bracelets that are associated with an online profile and to record their actions in social media. This makes KONY 2012 the first artificially created movement that is fully track-able, monitor-able and quantifiable by those who engendered it. In other words, what appears to be a movement “from the people” is actually a new way for the elite to advance its agenda.
A Propaganda Experiment
The video begins with an interesting statement: “The next 27 minutes are an experiment. But in order for it to work, you have to pay attention”. It is an experiment as it tests a new, groundbreaking way to get an agenda accepted by the Facebook generation. In the past, when the government needed to justify the invasion of a country, the President would sit in front of the camera and tell the public why war should be declared in this area of the world. In the case of KONY, the military agenda is disguised as grassroots activism, where the US army entering Uganda would be perceived as a “victory of the people”, effectively reversing the communications model.
Towards the end of the video, an image is displayed explaining how decisions (and messages) start from the top of the pyramid (the elite) and are communicated to the masses through mass media and such.
Due to the advent of social media, the above diagram has become a lot less effective to get a message across to the young generation. It is not CNN reports and the President addressing the nation anymore, it is about “liking” Facebook pages and viral YouTube videos. This is where messages now come across. Always studying, analyzing and exploiting the most effective ways to persuade public opinion, KONY 2012 appears to be an attempt to test out the effectiveness of a “viral” propaganda campaign. By creating this “movement” and making young people actually DEMAND the U.S. government intervene in Africa, the masterminds behind this campaign would manage the impossible: Reversing the propaganda model in order to make it emanate from the people. By doing so, the elite’s agenda is not only accepted by the masses, it is perceived as a victory by them.
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America the Police State - Unmanned Drones to Patrol U.S. Skies in Near Future
Already used by the US Army in war-zones such as Afghanistan, unmanned drones are about to be used by police departments, border patrols and even power companies. These remote-controlled planes can be equipped with high powered cameras, heat sensors and even weapons (they have been used to kill “terrorists” in the Middle-East) to track, monitor and potentially wreck havoc on groups or specific individuals. Although not yet used in the US their use on domestic soil is pretty much an inevitability. For example, the ShadowHawk, a drone conceived by the company Vanguard, greatly interests US law-enforcement groups for its weapon-bearing qualities. Its “international” version can be equipped with a 40mm grenade launcher and a 12-guage shotgun – all of this can be controlled from a laptop computer.
As a recent report from the ACLU states, unmanned drones in US domestic soil would represent “a large step closer to a surveillance society in which our every move is monitored, tracked, recorded, and scrutinized by the authorities”. Here’s an article from the Associated Press about to push for the use of drones in the US.
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“NDAA signifies the greatest transformation of our republic and our constitutional values since the founding of this country. The presidency has become more imperial under President Obama. By the way, he asked for the power in 2009 so it’s not like it was somehow imposed on him by Congress without him wanting it. These powers of indefinite detention are an absolute undermining of our due process and fundamental values.
The fact that the vast majority of Congress and the President would enact legislation allowing someone to point out anybody as a ‘belligerent’ means they could come by, kidnap me, indefinitely detain me until the end of my life with no legal representation, no charges, and no trial? Why is it that people in this country aren’t out in the streets calling for a return to our most basic and fundamental constitutional values? A return of due process? Return of habeas corpus? People in this country need to understand how vastly our system of government is being transformed and undermined by this administration.
It was started by President Bush, but it’s being continued on in the most subversive way by this administration.”
Lloyd Craig Blankfein is an American business executive. He is currently the CEO and Chairman of Goldman Sachs. He has been in this position since the May 31, 2006 nomination of former CEO Henry Paulson as Secretary of the Treasury under George W. Bush.
Blankfein earned a total of $54.4 million in 2006 as one of the highest paid executives on Wall Street. His bonus reflected the performance of Goldman Sachs, which reported record net earnings of $9.5 billion. The compensation included a cash bonus of $27.3 million.
Blankfein is a contributor to mostly Democratic party candidates and donated $4,600 to Democratic Party candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2007. Goldman employees and their relatives contributed almost a million dollars to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign — making it “the company from which Obama raised the most money in 2008” — and Blankfein has visited the White House ten times as of February 2011.
The information is right in front of our faces that the elections are predetermined by those in corporate power rather than fairly determined by the people. I mean, really? How can one compare to such a highly sponsored candidate like that? They had a 30 minute infomercial scripted, filmed, and broadcasted to the United States as a part of Barack’s campaign. A THIRTY MINUTE INFOMERCIAL. This is a corporate, media controlled country that desperately needs to be put back into the hands of the people.
Hacker group “Anonymous” struck out in retaliation, taking down the Department of Justice and Universal Music Group’s websites, as well as that of the Recording Industry Association of America. A member of the group is quoted in saying “more is coming” and that Anonymous, as well as other groups working in cooperation with it, intend to “damage campaign raising abilities of remaining Democrats who support SOPA.”.
Shortly afterwards, attacks were made on the Whitehouse website, Copyright.gov, BMI.com, Motion Picture Association of America as well as FBI.gov.
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The cautions about the fight not being over were echoed by Wikipedia, whose English-language version was easily accessible again Thursday. A banner at the top of the site reads, “Thank you for protecting Wikipedia. (We’re not done yet).”———————————On the next page Wiki directs us to, it states:
“SOPA and PIPA are not dead: they are waiting in the shadows,” Wikipedia said on a page linked from that banner. “We’re turning the lights back on. Help us keep them shining brightly.”
“SOPA sponsor Lamar Smith stated that the House of Representatives will push the bill forward in February. Senate sponsor Patrick Leahy still plans for a PIPA vote on January 24. Moreover, SOPA and PIPA are symptoms of a larger issue. They are misguided solutions to a misunderstood problem. In the U.S. and abroad, legislators and big media are embracing censorship and sacrificing civil liberties in their attacks on free knowledge and an open Internet.” READ MORE
“The reason they are always complainting about “pirates” today is simple. We’ve done what they did. We circumvented the rules they created and created our own. We crushed their monopoly by giving people something more efficient. We allow people to have direct communication between eachother, circumventing the profitable middle man, that in some cases take over 107% of the profits (yes, you pay to work for them). It’s all based on the fact that we’re competition.
We’ve proven that their existance in their current form is no longer needed. We’re just better than they are.”
The US Congress is considering America’s first system for censoring the Internet. Despite public outcry, the Internet Censorship bill could pass at any time. If it does, the Internet and free speech will never be the same:
WEBSITE BLOCKING: If SOPA or Protect IP passes, the government can order internet providers to block any site for its users’ infringing posts, using the same DNS-blocking methods as China or Iran.
RISK OF JAIL FOR ORDINARY USERS: It becomes a felony with a potential 5 year sentence to stream a copyrighted work that would cost more than $2,500 to license, even if you are an ordinary noncommercial user. Singing a pop song on Facebook could be a felony.
CHAOS FOR THE INTERNET: Thousands of sites that are legal under the DMCA would face new legal threats. People trying to keep the internet more secure wouldn’t be able to rely on the integrity of the DNS system.
Congress is trying to use the jobs crisis as an excuse to censor the internet. Tell them NO. Sign up for the massive call-in day next week here.
This CounterThink cartoon was originally published in 2006, and at the time it seemed almost outlandish to suppose that virtually an entire economy could be run on junk foods, sickness, disease and health care. And yet in the years since, this scenario has become more of a reality in the United States of America, where politicians are announcing “The economy is good” even while an increasingly large portion of that economy is based on disease-causing products and sick-care maintenance of the population (the “health care” system).