LIONEL PODCAST: Murica! Stop Giving Our Propaganda A Bad Name

Stop poo-pooing propaganda. Or Pshaw!. (I love archaic expressions of reaction.) It’s as American as the neck tattoo and viral video. We wallow and thrive in propaganda. News, history, popular culture — it’s all part of the propagandist meat grinder. Everything that we do, everything that we think and perceive is addressed and formed via the mechanics of “the conscious and intelligent manipulation of organized habits and opinions.” From our flag-waving obeisance to the conflation of political ideology with active popular memes, we are walking and talking propaganda automatons. Our history, worldview, name it. So embrace it. Listen herein. From Leni Riefenstahl and “Triumph of the Will” to Frank Capra and “Why We Fight” it’s all propaganda. From congregatio de propaganda fide or “congregation for propagation of the faith” and a committee of cardinals in 1622 by Pope Gregory XV, it’s a deliberate. Country music, John Wayne, talk radio, right versus left, positive and negative. History and news are pop culture. Stop fighting it. Embrace it. It’s quintessentially American. And watch especially how the country music retreads and wannabes are climbing over each other to weigh in and plant the flag on the Mount Suribachi of country memes. Like Toby Keith and Peter Jennings during the Iraq monstrosity.

I have seen these things with my very own eyes
And defended my battered soul
It must be too tough to die
American propaganda, South African lies
Will not force me to take up arms, that’s my enemies’ pride

And I won’t fight by his rules that’s foolishness besides
His ignorance is gonna do him in and nobody’s gonna cry
Because his children they are growing up
With bigots and their silver cups they’re fed up
They might throw up on you

Stephen Stills – Word Game

(This is one of Stills’ greatest and most significant contributions to music history ever. It’s reminiscent of early hip hop in its syncopation and cadence. Brilliant.)

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