Our world is full of fakes and liars and people who believe them. It’s annoying, and distressing at times, but hardly an acute observation. Lots of people believe the latest Obama or any other icon with a good image simply because they seem nice. People who buy that are beyond help unless they choose to help themselves. However there are other kinds of fakery which are more insidious.
I remember hearing last summer a few times on Finnish main stream radio news how the US government had increased terrorism alertness level, said by a female reporter in a serious tone. Even though there was nothing untrue in the words or details of the news, the message itself was disingenuous. More important was what was not said, instead of what was said. The words were true, yet they contained little meaning. The unsaid message was something along the lines: we the people of little Finland who don’t have to worry so much about the problems of the dangerous world out there should be grateful of our situation, live in fear, enjoy consumerism and let the big boys do their thing without our interference.
Had the news been genuinely trying to inform people of the events happening in the world, they would not have omitted facts such that the US government and their allies are the catalyst for most acts of terror that happen in the world, be it directly or indirectly. Terrorism in the this sense meaning extremists who want to cause fear and destruction. Or in a more direct way the terrorism applying to the military-industrial complex and the terror it brings. Had the newsreader been a genuine human being instead of a slave working for a machine, she might have said something like what a joke it is the US is increasing the alertness level. She might have hinted that it is more like an advertisement campaign for Homeland Security than an actual threat based on evidence. The Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq lie was more believable.
The media often does this sort of thing, they tell you something that is true, or rather they give you facts but not the truth. They distract you from looking at what actually matters with insignificant details. The best way to combat this is to have healthy sense of skepticism and curiosity, as well as keeping an eye of what is really happening. Understanding the big picture. For example, most of us would suspect some sort of deception if we were to see a pink elephant fly through the skies, since our big picture of understanding of reality says that sort of thing does not happen. Still, if we were to see it, it’s hardly smart to shut our minds to it, but rather to investigate further. Is it a large balloon, a hallucination or really a magical elephant? However, many do not have a good understanding of the big picture in politics and all that scheming stuff, so we tend to rely on the experts even if our gut instinct says there’s something fishy about it. The only way of understanding the big picture is to pay attention. We have to be able to receive information and also to digest it. Try to make sense of it.
“Eternal vigilance is the price we pay for freedom” is a cliché I believe in. See beyond words, forms and images to see the patterns.