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Controlling Consciousness

Public Good Project

November 10, 2015

by Jay Taber

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The role of public relations (PR) in producing ‘discursive monoculture’ is currently in vogue with communication scholars. As an instrument of social control, the goal of PR is to dominate discourse, and to keep out alternative views.

Using PR, the donor elites in the US — MacArthur, Ford and Open Society foundations — set the civil society agenda. Human rights indicators — set by governments, NGOs and civil society — thus reflect the interests and bias of ‘the power elite’.

Access to communication technology and services is one obstacle to democratic renewal; overcoming the obstacle of communication gatekeepers requires that they be recognized as such. There are no neutral players in the netwar of ideas about privatization.

Consumers remain largely unaware that investigative journalism in mainstream media is extinct. Corporate and government public relations agents have filled the void with propaganda posing as news.

Wall Street’s vertical integration of controlling consciousness is based on five components: ownership of media, fabrication of news, integration of advertising with state propaganda, financing of foundations and brokerages, and co-option of NGOs and grassroots groups.

 

[Jay Taber is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies, a correspondent to Forum for Global Exchange, and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as communications director at Public Good Project, a volunteer network of researchers, analysts and activists engaged in defending democracy. As a consultant, he has assisted indigenous peoples in the European Court of Human Rights and at the United Nations. Email: tbarj [at] yahoo.com Website: www.jaytaber.com]

 

 

FURTHER READING

Charms of Naomi: the Mystique of Mass Hypnosis

Communication: the Invisible Environment

A Culture of Imbeciles

Dependence Limits Strategies

Distorting Reality

Illuminating Private Equity

The Point of Protest

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