Category Archives: Get on the bandwagon

CNN: "The Trump supporters used by Russia"

CNN speaks with people unwittingly used by the Kremlin-linked Internet Research Agency.

Source: The unwitting: The Trump supporters used by Russia – Feb. 20, 2018
CNN itself covered a rally sponsored by the Internet Research Agency and falsely reported that it was organized by a 20 year old.
CNN does not mention that it too was unwittingly used by Internet Research Agency, publishing news stories sourced to Internet Research Agency social media propaganda.
Nor does CNN mention that its coverage of an elderly woman who attended one of the rallies is considered “doxing” and she is now being harassed online. Such behavior on the part of CNN acts to suppress others from attending political events (of any type). Their own news coverage conveniently omits CNN’s own direct involvement. CNN’s report comes across as a threat intended to suppress others from having public perspectives.
Doxing

“The term dox derives from the slang “dropping dox,” which, according to Wired writer Mat Honan, was “an old-school revenge tactic that emerged from hacker culture in 1990s.” Hackers operating outside the law in that era used the breach of an opponent’s anonymity as a means to expose opponents to harassment or legal repercussions.[10]”

This is CNN.

Of interest: US media fell for Russian-connected propaganda and then amplified the message

A conservative web site notes that CNN and MSNBC amplified the messaging of Russian connected propaganda operations.
Neither seemed clear on who organized the rally until CNN settled on a 20 year old college student. The DoJ indictment says it was organized by Russia connected actors.
Source: CNN and MSNBC Helped Russia Sow Discord by Promoting Anti-Trump Rally

Fitness trackers do not improve health; Plan B is to manipulate users via social media peer pressure #FitnessTrackers

This is a standard propaganda technique – “Get on the Bandwagon”, which uses peer pressure to encourage you to adopt someone else’s agenda:

The first is leveraging social networks to stoke competition or foster support. Researchers led by Penn State psychologist Liza Rovniak recently showed support networks to be highly effective at increasing physical activity in unmotivated adults, but Patel suspects the leaderboard format, a popular way of promoting competition by ranking users, fails to inspire anyone but those people at the top of the charts (who probably need the least encouragement anyway).

Source: Science Says Fitness Trackers Don’t Work. Wear One Anyway | WIRED
Even though fitness trackers do not work to change behavior over time, many employers now give away free fitness trackers in exchange for employer sponsored health insurance discounts.
Note
This only applies to employer-sponsored health insurance. In the individual market, the ACA prohibits giving discounts to individuals who engage in any healthy behaviors other than not smoking. The ACA turned the health insurance market place into a variant of apartheid.

Begging the question (fallacy) in propaganda messaging

“Begging the question, sometimes known by its Latin name petitio principii (meaning assuming the initial point), is a logical fallacy in which the writer or speaker assumes the statement under examination to be true. In other words, begging the question involves using a premise to support itself. If the premise is questionable, then the argument is bad.”

Source: Begging the question (fallacy) – Grammarist

This is explained by example at a conservative leaning blog:

This insidious process of begging the question is typical of totalitarian propaganda which made abundant use of expressions like “undeniably”, “unquestionably” or as “everyone knows” or their more modern equivalents like as “all decent people agree …”, “the science is settled” or “this is not who we are” to assume what must otherwise be proved. But it nevertheless compels obedience like a herd driving itself along.

This has the effect of positing a consensus which in fact may not exist.

This is the basic concept of asserting something to be true, followed by asserting that everyone already agrees (“Get on the Bandwagon” propaganda method).

This propaganda statement is extremely common as illustrated by the last item, above “this is not who we are” – this statement, often in exactly those words – was issued by United Airlines after they assaulted a paying customer, was used by Equifax after losing personal data on 143 million Americans, and is used in almost every press statement after a company has been caught doing something wrong or just plain stupid. Yet empirically, this is exactly who they are as illustrated by the event they are responding to!

Statements such as “everyone agrees” are intended to anchor you to the thought that the discussion on the topic is settled.

Update:In late 2017, numerous entertainment, media and political leaders have been accused, often with numerous accusers and witnesses, of using their position of power to sexually assault or harass women. In almost every case, the accused has used the “this is now who I am” defense even when admitting to the behavior.

Sen. Al Franken’s resignation announcement text using the now traditional “this is not who I am” phrasing:

“I am proud that during my time the senate I have used my power to be a champion of women and that I have earned a reputation as someone who respects the women I work alongside everyday. I know there’s been a very different picture of me painted over the last few weeks, but I know who I really am,” Franken said on the U.S. Senate floor Thursday morning.