Propaganda can involve seamlessly weaving elements of the false narratives a government or a news organization wants to perpetuate into a tapestry of true accounts so readers or viewers or listeners can’t detect that lies are being reinforced.
Take a segment in NPR’s Morning Edition today, on how some agreed-upon real government conspiracies of the past helped nurture a susceptibility to conspiracy theories in general.
Morning Edition host David Greene is interviewing Rund Abdelfatah of the new NPR podcast “Throughline.” Near the end, Abdelfatah says, quickly:
“Was the JFK assassination an inside job? No. How about 9/11? No. But did the U.S. help fund sterilization campaigns? Yes.”
Greene buys in, mentioning “crisis actors in a school shooting, a ‘deep state’ that is against President Trump, the birther movement — these kinds of conspiracy theories have become a feature of our current news and politics” — as if all are equally crazy.
Decide for yourself. Type “Morning Edition March 7, 2019” into a search engine, click on the link for today’s show, scroll down to the segment, and listen carefully.