January 6th exposes two competing propaganda regimes?

Kent Kroeger
8 min readMar 15

By Kent R. Kroeger (March 15, 2023)

Photo by Tyler Merbler (Used under the CCA 2.0 Generic license.)

“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.” — Edward Bernays, from his 1928 book: Propaganda.

“Propaganda is the deliberate, systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist.” — Garth S. Jowett and Victoria O’Donnell, from their 1986 book: Propaganda and Persuasion.

A common misperception about propaganda is that its synonymous with spreading falsehoods.

Yes, there are examples of propaganda campaigns using falsehoods to advance an agenda. Perhaps the ballsiest in American history was the brainchild of one of our most revered founders: Benjamin Franklin.

In 1782, while serving as the U.S. Minister to France and hearing that the British wanted reconciliation negotiations with the American colonies, Franklin concocted and published a fake Boston newspaper — The Independent Chronicle — which had in it a mostly fabricated news story about the British hiring Native Americans along New York’s border for the purpose of slaughtering American colonists. As the U.S. Revolutionary War was coming to an end, Franklin’s information operation served its purpose by reinforcing colonist hostility towards the British. There was no reconciliation.

Though it is impossible to know the practical impact, if any, of Franklin’s late-inning deceit on the war’s outcome, it is fair to conclude that he massaged the truth in pursuit of what he considered a righteous cause.

That is the justification every propagandist working today uses to rationalize their clever manipulation of the truth.

Fast forward to the present…

Fox News’ Tucker Carlson remains under fire from a broad array of news outlets, comedians, and politicians, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), over a series of segments on his Fox News cable show where he released and interpreted about 60 minutes of…

Kent Kroeger

I am a survey and statistical consultant with over 30 -years experience measuring and analyzing public opinion (You can contact me at: kroeger98@yahoo.com)