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Month: May 2016

Scott Adams’ The Persuasion Reading List

Scott Adams’ The Persuasion Reading List

Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, has published his “The Persuasion Reading List”. His thesis is that people may be easily persuaded – and that those with the skills to persuade others end up winning, regardless of whether they are correct. Source: Scott Adams Blog

Scott Adams (“Dilbert”) thinks Donald Trump is a master propagandist

Scott Adams (“Dilbert”) thinks Donald Trump is a master propagandist

I have no idea if Trump is a master propagandist but Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams thinks Trump is highly effective at using the methods of persuasion. Propaganda is a set of methods for persuading others to adopt an action (in this case, vote for Trump): SCOTT ADAMS: I’ve been studying persuasion for decades and when I saw Trump last summer displaying the tools of persuasion I thought, ‘Oh my God, he’s not a crazy clown. Everything he’s doing, including his…

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#OccupyDemocrats is giving propaganda a bad name

#OccupyDemocrats is giving propaganda a bad name

TL;DR Summary Occupy Democrats makes an assertion that is easily proven wrong. The link between the bridge collapse and the real world events is a logical fallacy. This is the same format as last year’s false claim about an overpass collapse (Read that link – its unbelievable). What actually caused this collapse? A truck crashed in to the bridge, causing the collapse. “Officials say the collapse of the bridge was not a design or maintenance-related issue.” But, alluding to last year’s false poster…

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Another of Lincoln’s Celebrity Endorsement quotes

Another of Lincoln’s Celebrity Endorsement quotes

TL;DR Summary This poster uses the method of Celebrity endorsement and appeal to authority  to deliver its message. This quote is – surprisingly – accurate and not taken out of context. There are numerous fake Lincoln quotes appearing in propaganda posters, however.  

Denmark has the world’s highest personal debt – surprised?

Denmark has the world’s highest personal debt – surprised?

A popular and widely distributed social media propaganda poster proclaims Denmark as the happiest nation on earth because of a host of mostly false assertions about life in Denmark. Read the entire series about that nonsensical yet highly effective propaganda here. As yet another counterpoint to that silly poster, Danish households also have the world’s largest level of personal debt: “Danish households owe their creditors 321 percent of disposable incomes, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. That’s…

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Do more people go to jail than to college?

Do more people go to jail than to college?

TL;DR Summary This type of quote is known as a “glittering generality”. The clearly implied assertion is that more people go to jail than to college but this is false. The quote makes for good propaganda but it is a lie. Comparing “instant in time” measures, there were 20.6M in college in the fall of 2012 to about 2.4 million in prison or jail or detention. 41% of those aged 18-24 are in college! Poster source: Occupy Democrats Even though the quote is…

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Heads of state meet with social media CEO over propaganda opportunities

Heads of state meet with social media CEO over propaganda opportunities

German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with Facebook Nation president Mark Zuckerberg to request that Facebook Nation censor certain kinds of speech on social media: Speaking to the European leader at a luncheon, Zuckerberg was heard saying ‘we need to do some work’ in reference to the German push against racist and xenophobic posts on the Internet. ‘Are you working on this?’ Merkel, who has seen an increase in violence against immigrants in her country during a massive intake of Syrian…

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Facebook seeks to be unbiased propaganda platform

Facebook seeks to be unbiased propaganda platform

Or something like that 🙂 After allegations of bias and censorship by Facebook towards conservative viewpoints and groups, a survey done by YouGov indicates those who identify as Republican have dramatically cut their interest in Facebook (See The chart that shows why Mark Zuckerberg is hosting Glenn Beck and fellow conservatives at Facebook today – Recode)