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Day to Day Politics: What I write and why

Friday 16 March 2018

For most of my working life I worked in marketing and advertising, so I know how people are influenced, persuaded or swayed by such things as branding and repetitive advertising. Companies spend millions of dollars to subtly brainwash you, to align you with a certain brand or product.

They will use all manner of persuasive techniques, including sex and deceptive packaging to solicit your good will and loyalty. They even measure the eye blink rate of women from hidden cameras in supermarkets to test colour reaction. Yes, it’s that sophisticated. And brand loyalty is what they want.

There are more psychologists employed in advertising in America than in the health industry. It is all calculated to take power over your decision-making. And it works.

The same can be said for Australian mainstream media. It also wants your brand loyalty and the power to coerce you into its way of thinking. It uses similar techniques to the advertising industry and the main ingredients are untruth and the creation of perceptions with subliminal messages.

In the media it is easy to apply. It can be a headline, a one liner slogan like “stop the boats” or a photoshopped photograph and on television the way you lead a story or conduct an interview.

We are almost manipulated beyond our free will. But of course the often repeated blatant lie takes precedence and is the best tool to use for an audience that is uninformed and in a malaise and thus susceptible to this sort of propaganda.

Now of course they have another tool, “Opinion Journalism” – it’s true because Andrew said …

Now let me add that there is nothing wrong with opinions (we all have them) so long as there is a diversity of them. But the fact is we don’t have a diversity and we would be a much better society if we took the risk of thinking for ourselves unhindered by the unadulterated crap served up by a media who controls a large percentage of news in our major cities. We can also add self-interest groups and lobbyists.

The less-informed voters unfortunately greatly outnumber the more politically aware and therefore are the obvious victims of mainstream media deception where everything is reduced to simplistic slogans.

Where the opinion makers use all manner of tantalising, seductive and provocative words and imagery to win you over to what they want you to believe. Media is no longer about reporting news. It is about persuasion by opinion.

So it must have occurred to you by now that with a background like mine it would seem unremarkable if I didn’t use some of my learnt techniques to persuade you.

I don’t. The nearest I come is with the use of my fiction writing skills. But then it is only to make an article more interesting to the enquiring minds who appreciate my work and those who let me know when I get the slightest fact wrong.

Unlike Andrew Bolt who has to write for an average age of 13 to suit the demographic of the publication he writes for, I as do the other writers for The AIMN, seem to attract people of a higher level of thinking with a greater sensitivity for the things that matter.

As is often the case I get responses to my writing from a vast array of people – 99% of them are interested in explaining why they agree or disagree or fall somewhere in the middle.

Then there are those who use the platform as a means of letting off steam, expressing anger, looking for a fight, just wanting to be sarcastic, wanting to change the subject to suit their own argument and many more.

For the main part they all have something important to say. The last cohort however, for all their buffoonery require patience and kindness because they are seriously ill with mental problems that I’m not qualified to expand on other than to say one has to wonder about their upbringing.

So with all that said I hope I have explained that the origin of my writing stems from a long-held interest in social justice and inequality: of those who are deprived of a decent education, as I was, the environment and an urgent desire to repair and improve the standard of governance our politicians deliver.

Despite the laboriousness of writing everyday, at my age I am grateful that I have a megaphone by which I can express my opinions and await the comments that will adjudicate their worth. Being independent of mainstream media makes this possible. It is my fervent hope that in some small way my words might help to make the world a better place.

None of the things I believe in can be changed without a change in government. The AIMN is a blog that can influence that possibility.

My thought for the day.

“Finding the truth and reporting it is more important than creating a narrative where controversy matters more.”

30 comments

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  1. Pilot

    Lordy ol’ mate!! Correct me if I’m wrong, but, “…….await the comments that will adjudicate there worth…..” There? sigh
    You’re doing us old farts proud mate. A spade is a spade….
    Cheers

  2. Michael Taylor

    Thanks, Pilot. I’ve fixed the error.

  3. peterimrich

    Old Dog Thought: It ought to be said that money and the power of distribution of opinion differentiates John Lord from Andrew Bolt more so than their audience. News Corp provides Andrew Bolt with a bigger and far more commercial net. Thanks to to John, Kaye Lee, Michael Dowson and of course Aunty who always needs protection.

  4. auntyuta

    “How dumb are the masses of the world? One just has to look at the brazen, obvious false flag incidents that the elites keep piling on. Trained to be consumers of sensational news, the idiotic population of the West simply accepts allegations without thinking or analysis.” This is what it says in an article about “Framing Putin”:

    https://worldaffairs.blog/2018/03/14/framing-putin-pathetic-drama-in-uk-the-land-of-shakespeare/

    Framing Putin? I think it is pretty obvious.

  5. Leanne

    The gullible will always be gullible and until they open their eye’s and mind, nothing shall change for them.
    Hence because the gullible just narrowly got the LNP into government, it shows you and this Publication are
    having a positive effect.
    Unfortunately it is also the current numbnuts in power that think we will blindly follow like docile domesticated
    cows and sheep to the slaughter without a 2nd thought that are controlling the msm to the point we are only told
    what we need to know, when we need to know it, and why we need to know it………. IF msm became as it were
    back in the old day’s, it would be a lot better and governments would be a lot more scared than they are now of
    F#cking up.

    Good article John Lord and Thanks again for your wisdom and insight.

  6. Andrew Smith

    Good article and interesting how Australians, including educated, assume we have mainstream ‘media’ to inform us when in fact it’s a ‘medium’ lacking breadth, depth, good analysis and diversity; more about insularising us from the outside world and shaping opinions for marketing products, services and policies.

  7. David Bruce

    You remind me of the time I read “The Hidden Persuaders” by Vance Packard as part of a marketing course I did in 1985. In 2010, I decided to turn off my TV and haven’t missed it. Our world is changing in many ways, yet I still find the kindness of strangers is alive and well.

  8. etnorb

    Always enjoy your interesting articles John! Please keep on keeping us informed on a daily basis (as you have done!), if possible–funny thing is I almost always agree with what you say. And you always make your articles worth taking more than a glance at! I must admit that almost all the AIMN articles by all the “other” writers I read, have a similar affect! Certainly agree about the MSM, especially all the Mudrake media, well essentially, the Herald sun , the Daily Telegraph & the Courier Mail. Here in SA the Advertiser never seems to be as right wing & biased as these 3 papers are. However it is still owned by Mudrake, one has to read carefully sometimes!

  9. diannaart

    Now let me add that there is nothing wrong with opinions (we all have them) so long as there is a diversity of them. But the fact is we don’t have a diversity and we would be a much better society if we took the risk of thinking for ourselves unhindered by the unadulterated crap served up by a media who controls a large percentage of news in our major cities.

    Damn straight, John Lord.

    Warning the following contains material that may be highly offensive:

    Between the vested interests of Murdoch and the execrable IPA “championing the free-market” (cough, cough) they have stitched up the MSM and our once free ABC.

    These self-congratulatory parasites are the antithesis of diversity.

    PS

    Murdoch is living proof there is no god – well the warm, fuzzy one.

  10. Keitha Granville

    Thank goodness for you, and all the writers of the AIMN. I would suffocate with the drivel that is spouted on TV and in the broadsheets.

    Just this morning Sky was putting up figures on how many electors would be affected by the dividend imputation in specific electorates – $2000 here and $1900 there. I am glad this policy has been put out so far ahead of an election with plenty of time to debunk this theory that “mums and dads” and poor pensioners will be the big losers, rather than those with millions in super and thousands of shares who are currently paying zero tax and yet receiving a REFUND. How one can be refunded for something one has not paid is still beyond me.
    More facts and figures on the wealthy who receive this generosity would be good – AIMN is the place to get it out there.

    Keep on keeping on John, we need all the information and opinions you offer to keep us afloat until the election.

  11. helvityni

    “Then there are those who use the platform as a means of letting off steam, expressing anger, looking for a fight, just wanting to be sarcastic, wanting to change the subject to suit their own argument and many more.”

    Yes John, those people you find on any blog, but in my opinion they don’t appear here under your writings so much… Most posters here agree with you, you have a civilizing effect on commenters. I for one value it very much. Keep writing…

  12. Freethinker

    Thank you John for your valuable contribution in this site, your effort is appreciated by us all.
    I agree John that the main media is doing an unethical journalism but I have arrived to the conclusion that the blame is on the people that just read that source because they are to lousy to access another sources.
    By now we have to accept that those interested in the day to day management of the macro and micro economics in this country shopuld know that Murdoch and others are not reliable and do report the truth.
    if these people keep reading these media it is because not for ignorance but because they do not care less what it is happen as long as does not affect their life style.
    We have to accept that we have the government or politicians and that we deserve, the ones that have been elected in a democratic way.
    I am sorry to sound negative but it is time to accept that the “blame it is not in the pig but on those that scratch his back”

    Without intention to hijacking the thread, I guess that today we have some positive news: “History has been made by Tasmania becoming the first Australian state to return a female-majority parliament.
    Thirteen women and 12 men have been elected to the House Of Assembly as counting is finalised in the state election which was held on March 3.”

  13. Vicki Coppell

    I once read an argument that stated that you do not have the right to an opinion unless you have the evidence to back it. If you cannot back your opinion it is so much hot air. None of the contributors on AIMN are guilty of this.

  14. Diane Larsen

    John I look forward to your writing and the other contributers to the AIM network obviously I agree with your posts and consider them gems after having to put up with so much BS from MSM.I use to enjoy the 7.30 report with Kerry O’Brian but find that I can’t be bothered to watch it as the standard has slipped and it just makes me cross to listen to tossers not being held to account so please keep up the good work
    🌹

  15. Jan

    I coudn’t agree more with John on Bolt on writing for 13 years olds.LOL

  16. John Lord

    David Bruce. I still have a copy on my shelves.

  17. James Cook

    John, I’m a political naif and if I don’t read the AIMN every day I have little evidence with which to refute some of the right-wing, Telegraph inspired ravings from my surfing mates. Most of them are now reading the AIMN at least once a week. They are slowly realising that the MSM are not their friends. They are waking up to the fact that the Coalition are taking them for fools. It’s because of the work of you, Kaye Lee, Rossleigh et al that this change is occurring. I don’t comment often but I read always. Please keep up the opinions. I, and now some of my friends, value them.

  18. Ed H

    John, thank you for your posts here. I, for one, always try to read your posts in particular.
    Keep it up mate, the truth will eventually come out about just how rotten the current crop is.

  19. GrumpyT

    Lordy John, when I started to read this article, the thought went through my mind that you might be ‘retiring’. Fortunately, that thought was a whim. I cannot remember how I stumbled onto the AIMN website but am truly glad I did and, in some way unfortunately, it occupies my time when I should be doing other things. But, at least I get better informed and can see a variety of opinions – some with which I do not agree, but that is good –it exercises my one grey cell a little more. I am troubled by many things in this world and one of them is how ill-informed voters tend to be. It is unfortunate that many in our country do not know of the existence of the AIMN and its worthwhile contributions to discussion.
    I really wish that there was a very public forum that when the ALP (and others) come out with some excellent economic ideas (in my humble opinion) that they would spend time explaining them clearly and hope that the MSM might really print the explanations and not be superficial. Oh well, rant over – I must off to do something else.

  20. Kaye Lee

    James,

    We were all political naifs at some point. And then gradually, you start to feel uneasy. You start to question the direction the country is going. You start to question what you are being told. You start to lose trust.

    And then, as you start learning the truth, you feel the responsibility to share it with others, which is exactly what you are doing.

    Our writing would be little more than cathartic if not for our readers and commenters. It is you guys spreading the conversation that makes a difference.

  21. Tina Clausen

    I love your style of writing, thoughts and insights into social and political life in Australia. Reading your latest article is part of my daily routine. Please keep it up, you’re doing a wonderful thing.

    I often share your articles in various Facebook groups and forums, particularly when I can use them to sock it to our less than illustrious politicians, hehe. 🙂

  22. Frank Smith

    The present lead story on the Guardian is cause for further concern. Our ABC needs to cover fewer political and national news stories and present more “human interest” stories according to Michelle Guthrie and her team of imported “experts”.

    Wow, John, we need you more than ever and may you outlive Methuselah!

  23. helvityni

    Frank Smith, I thought this was lately happening with their ABC. I have noticed that Ms Sales has been including a human tear jerker or ‘a make you feel good story’ at the end of 7.30; must keep out of politics ,so not to upset our Government…

    That naughty comedian Micallef is cheeky to make fun of our politicians…how long will he last…
    The main evening news takes about fifteen minutes, the rest is dedicated to Sport…

  24. Frank Smith

    Yes, helvityni, I have noted Ms Sales ending the 7:30 report with those sorts of stories that would be better placed in a “New Idea” magazine in a doctor’s surgery. What further sickens me and leads me to reach for the remote is the way Ms Sales “fawns over” some of these inconsequential interviewees, often giggling like a young schoolgirl – she usually does the same with Turnbull.

    I also note that the Guardian only kept the ABC story up as a lead story for a very short time. Here is the link for those who missed it:

    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2018/mar/16/abc-news-should-cover-more-human-interest-stories-michelle-guthrie-says

    I fear for the future of ABC Radio National – I think its days are numbered.

  25. wam

    Wow Lord, disagree with your version of the truth and we:
    “are seriously ill with mental problems that I’m not qualified to expand on other than to say one has to wonder about their upbringing..”

    Arrogance of the ignorant who believe they are above average, above murdoch and blame those who are below for being influenced.
    .
    Is it true because you say but not because tlob says?? Is it true for Di to say dutton wants to revive the white Australia policy or was Di trying to have a last minute grab for SA?

    When you read tlob do you not consider anything he writes to be true?

    When rabbottians share American and British right wing posts, how do you react?

    Have you taken your car for tyres or battery and heard the wireless piped into the shop?
    ps
    The catholic church were not just abusers but, a la ‘Philomena’ were massive stealers of children. Tolb conceded, if my story of a Darwin man were true, that he was stolen by the church. But despite the evidence he baulks at a stolen generation believing these children were saved from Aboriginality.
    pps
    Sadly, Frank, Radio National is next. Personally ABC Breakfast and ABC 24 could go and leave Radio alone.

  26. New England Cocky

    I whole-heartedly agree with these excellent sentiments

  27. Stephen Brailey

    Quite a personal piece today John. I find it hartening that someone who was in a field that uses our conscious and subconscious desires to manipulate others has the integrity to look beyond device to present us with clear choices. So much of what we read is predicated on assumptions we have been given and false truths repeated so as to give them validity. I find your writing to be open and honest and lacking the hubris I find even in authors of a more humanist bent.

  28. Sean

    Hi John. It was nearly 12 months to the day that as a person who had been watching the ABC for about 35 years I decided it had gone to far down the track of the commercial media and I stopped watching. Have not watched commercial rubbish for 20 years or so.
    Must correct you on Bolts audience age mate. You are to generous. More like 6 years with a little bit of brain damage thrown in.
    Keep up the fine writing

  29. diannaart

    Advertising.

    Proof that exposure to carefully crafted stimulus can effect our choices…

  30. johnlord2013

    Wam. 1 I was referring to people who personally attack the individual and don’t stick to the facts.

    2 I have no idea what you are talking about.

    3 I assume you are talking about Andrew Bolt. There was a time when I read him. Now I don’t. My experience suggested he was a perverted liar.

    4 If you don’t like my version of truth then read Bolt. Entirely up to you.

    5 I have no idea who Di is.

    6 I have read Philomena and the Movie. Other than that I have no idea what you are talking about.

    7 doesn’t refer to anything I said.

    8 Appreciate your comments but I think we are on a higher level than I.

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