Television news needs to create a hypnotic effect. Otherwise it would fall apart and shatter into a million nonsensical pieces.
One: the presented data must be repeated, of course. This is the time-honored strategy. When the viewer sees and hears the same nugget many times, he accepts it because—“how can they say it so often if it isn’t true?”
Close on the heels of this: “everybody else must be accepting it, who am I to make an objection?”
And then, finally, there is the after-image effect. At the edge of consciousness, the viewer remembers the nugget and—“anything in my memory is automatically real.”
Two: a significant percentage of all news stories are framed as he-said, he-said. Two opposing viewpoints. No resolution. Done often enough, this produces cognitive dissonance, which in turn shuts off the rational mind and puts the viewer into a light trance, a state of suspension.
At this point, he becomes more accepting of other news items. No deliberation; no questions. He’s a channel, sucking in the information.
Three: the blend, the segue, the smooth transition from one news story to the next, as if the entire newscast is a single narrative: car accident on the highway, holiday shopping, ISIS, defective car recall, slow hurricane season, new drug for arthritis, stock market jitters, Presidential approval ratings, dancing cat YouTube video.
Consciously, the viewer can’t connect any of these bits, but the anchor is an actor who can pretend to make them all into a flowing story.
The viewer chooses to succumb—otherwise he would have to face the fact that he is looking at unbridled lunacy.
He doesn’t want that. He wants story. He’s solidly addicted. So he’ll settle for the nightly pretense of a story.
His settling deepens his trance.
Four: the invisible threat. This is always a big seller. Whether it’s al Qaeda or ISIS or some other group he’s never heard of—and will never see—he’s buying.
At some interior level, he’s hoping for an enemy that will justify his ongoing generalized fear, suspicion, and anxiety—as a point of focus. “Ah yes, there it is. Got it in my crosshairs. Now I know why I feel this way.”
The Surveillance State implies there are untold numbers of terrorists hiding in our country. The CDC hypes a new invisible germ that could sweep away lives.
“I don’t want to see the threat. Let it remain invisible. I just want to know it’s there. Then I can explain why I have feelings that point to no apparent target. Tell me there is a target. Then I’ll be satisfied.”In this kind of psyop, the viewer is quite happy to sit on one side of a line in the sand, where he doesn’t have to do anything.
Or, in extreme circumstances, the news will present a quick blitz of several simultaneous stories, all of which appear to be spinning out of control and bringing chaos.
This is a prelude to later assurances that order has been restored. Of course, the order always carries with it a retraction of some piece of freedom—characterized as a humane response.
To the degree that I watch, listen to, and read mainstream news, this is why: to observe these and other allied strategies in action.
Seeing how reality is being built among ladders, pulleys, ropes, utilizing workers, deploying front men, is the kind of education that energizes the mind and torpedoes the trance.
“Coming up after the break, more mind control. Stay with us.”