I sometimes try to get establishment loyalists to explain to me exactly why we’re all meant to be terrified of this “Russian propaganda” thing they keep carrying on about. What is the threat, specifically? That it makes the public less willing to go to war with Russia and its allies? That it makes us less trusting of lying, torturing, coup-staging intelligence agencies? Does accidentally catching a glimpse of that green RT logo turn you to stone like Medusa, or melt your face like in Raiders of the Lost Ark?
“Well, it makes us lose trust in our institutions,” is the most common reply.
Okay. So? Where’s the threat there? We know for a fact that we’ve been lied to by those institutions. Iraq isn’t just something we imagined. We should be skeptical of claims made by western governments, intelligence agencies and mass media. How specifically is that skepticism dangerous?
The establishment is weaponizing hysteria over "Russiagate" and "fake news" to attack Black Lives Matter activists, anti-war voices, water protectors & other real progressives… & justifying it with the Orwellian lie they're "fighting propaganda". #WorldPressFreedomDay pic.twitter.com/xWi14nmS3a
— Dr. Jill Stein🌻 (@DrJillStein) May 3, 2018
Trying to get answers to such questions from rank-and-file empire loyalists is like pulling teeth, and they are equally lacking in the mass media who are constantly sounding the alarm about Russian propaganda. All I see are stories about Russia funding environmentalists (the horror!), giving a voice to civil rights activists (oh noes!), and retweeting articles supportive of Jeremy Corbyn (think of the children!). At its very most dramatic, this horrifying, dangerous epidemic of Russian propaganda is telling westerners to be skeptical of what they’re being told about the Skripal poisoning and the alleged Douma gas attack, both of which do happen to have some very significant causes for skepticism.
When you try to get down to the brass tacks of the actual argument being made and demand specific details about the specific threats we’re meant to be worried about, there aren’t any to be found.
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