We live in two Americas.
One America, now the minority, functions in a literate world. It can cope with complexity and can separate illusion from truth. The other America, which is the majority, exists in a non-reality-based belief system. This America, dependent on skillfully manipulated images for information, has severed itself from the literate culture. It cannot differentiate between lies and truth.
Political propaganda now masquerades as ideology. Political campaigns have become an experience. They do not require cognitive or self-critical skills. They are designed to ignite pseudo-religious feelings of euphoria, empowerment and collective salvation.
Campaigns that succeed are carefully constructed psychological instruments that manipulate fickle public moods, emotions and impulses, many of which are subliminal. They create a public ecstasy that annuls individuality and fosters a state of mindlessness.
Drew Curtis, founder of crowd aggregator Fark.com:
The ‘wisdom of the crowds’ is the most ridiculous statement I’ve heard in my life.
Crowds are dumb. It takes people to move crowds in the right direction, crowds by themselves just stand around and mutter. Only one percent of web comments have any value and the rest are ‘garbage’.
Curtis pointed to the America Speaking Out website launched by House Republicans to “allow the public to weigh in” on the issues. Curtis called the site an absolute train wreck. “It’s an absolute disaster. It’s impossible to tell who was kidding and who wasn’t.”