The Doc is In

Doc points to my Spin Country entry but pushes back a little, noting that corporate propaganda may be less now than it once was, scrutinized as it is by fact checking bloggers:

“I’m not sure it’s worse now than it ever was. In fact, I think it’s better. One measure: common as they are, the number of press releases chasing me in the world has declined since Cluetrain came out. Of course, that may be because I’m one of the four last people you’ll want to send a press release if you’ve bothered to read the book; but still, it seems indicative.
 
Plus there’s the plain fact that you’ve got a quarter million or more stringers out there, calling bullshit on every specioius source that rears its flacky head. After awhile that has to have an effect.”

I agree. Also, as I put this and me to bed in the early morning hours, I felt the post was a little cynical:

“The brightest, most ambitious employees can’t afford to work for a living. They need to hold jobs for a living. Sure, they’d like to work for a living, but they need to do what best secures their families’ futures: their careers. And what builds careers? Expectations build careers. Track records don’t build careers, mentoring doesn’t build careers, innovation doesn’t build careers.”

I went over the top there, since most people in organizations do the right thing and work hard at doing it better. But the grain of truth is that they work for top-level managers who are forced to generate impossibly optimistic intimations of breakout possibilities, in an arms race against competitive optimism to try to get a little respect from jaded analysts (at least the analysts they don’t have in their pocket). I don’t see a conspiracy here, just the unfortunate maneuvers of people who do sorry things because they feel they need to.

The Fix is In

What’s shocking is the pervasiveness of cynical, amnesia-based representations by companies, governments and religious folk. Amnesia-based in the sense that it relies on the public’s tendency to be so busy with their real lives to track and check facts, but rather to respond to the tone of the representations it sees and hears, rather than the underlying, fairly obvious realities. Our memory seems about 3 months long and shrinking. It’s as if managers, politicians and evangelists believe their own PR and then, like a kid caught in a fib, feel forced to extend and embellish misleading statements to make them big enough to be believed.

No Way Out

The most obvious example of this disconnect is practiced by Karl Rove’s White House, Praising soldiers while cutting veteran’s benefits, cheerleading education while cutting school budgets, Deriding Big Gummint while designing the biggest deficit in history.

Our Attorney General, the Cop of Our Land, is on the record advising his people to overtly violate the Freedom of Information Act. Who’s going to prosecute them? It’s like a police cruiser parked on the sidewalk in front of Krispy Kreme.

It’s disgusting when corporate chieftains and evangelists violate our trust, but we can sell stocks and boycott products and worship elsewhere, precious freedoms all. But notice a cynical disconnect in the integrity of the leaders of the land, and you’re told to Love it or Leave it.

Bad news fellas, thinking people are here for the long haul, and our collective memories are long enough to notice lies and resurrect the truth.

1:57:18 PM    

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