New Dawn Special Issue
Vol. 14 No 5 (Oct 2020)
from NewDawnMagazine Website
Pearl Harbor (1941),
We want answers to questions like:
In the mainstream narrative - the approved orthodox version of events - a clear meaning is always provided, often alongside the news of the dramatic event itself.
On the morning of 11 September 2001, even as the events were broadcast of the twin tower explosions, a banner streamed across TV screens:
This prompt designation of meaning to an event has an important psychological effect.
The first plausible explanation someone hears for a dramatic or traumatic event tends to fix in the subconscious and resists displacement by later explanations.
That's why the orthodox mainstream meaning is,
It is easy to see why followers of mainstream media consider themselves 'well informed'...
On any public topic, they know the meaning, and from that framework they discuss this or that development with a sense of knowing what it's all about.
For every story, big and small, the media always gives us a why along with the what.
Its stories and the attached meanings cover the whole scope of 'what's important', and there's little room for alternative explanations.
Contrary explanations from non-mainstream sources are easily dismissed:
Every explanation that
comes from outside the bubble is automatically suspect.
As if that weren't enough to keep the bubble sealed, there are specific mechanisms - what we might call info-firewalls - that are ever-present in the orthodox world.
More recently, growing out of events involving Wikileaks and the 2016 US presidential election, we now have a 'fake news' firewall.
In the middle of the election campaign, Wikileaks released information that should have seen the Clintons and their foundation indicted for serious crimes.
This obviously wasn't going to happen in the real world of Washington politics, and a quick info-fix was needed.
Instead of responding to
or denying the leaks, they were simply branded with a fresh new term
- 'fake news' - a term that soon became an all-pervasive meme,
automatically applicable to anything that contradicts the orthodox
This is why it's impossible to discuss issues with an orthodox believer if you have a contrary understanding of the meaning behind the events of the day.
Your attempt at info-intrusion can even be received as an insult, suggesting that the person isn't well informed and in need of coaching from 'arrogant you'.
A crisis is identified, given meaning, and changes announced. Another crisis comes along, and again we get big changes. Each crisis comes with its own little meaning story, unrelated to the meaning of the crisis that came before or the one that comes after.
Society stumbles along,
it seems, always responding to unexpected crises.
There can be no meaning in society's trajectory, in the orthodox world, because in that world we know very well that the trajectory has been imposed on us by unexpected random crises.
Any suggestion of some
kind of direction or path can only be a paranoid fantasy - you are
seeing patterns where none exist, like a Rorschach inkblot.
That's why a meaning is declared right away - even if it's a mystery how they figured things out so quickly. The meaning is repeated endlessly, via multiple info-genres, and kept alive thereafter.
No one ever refers back
to the events of 9/11 without including mentioning that horrible
Of course, there will also be testimony and evidence presented, but this need not go beyond the cursory. Since people already 'know' the meaning, the who and why, they need very little in the way of evidence to feel that the meaning has been adequately verified.
Psychologists call this
Thus, the whole power of 'Fort Orthodox' stands on one tactic:
This powerful tactic makes the job of info-propaganda much easier as the believer only looks for verification, rationalizations, but not proof.
With meaning firmly and promptly established, the media can focus right away on promoting the subsequent actions required following their declaration of what it's all about, e.g. terrorist attack, Novichok poisoning, deadly pandemic, etc.
To become a well-informed citizen of the real world, making use of what's available open-source, is a much more challenging undertaking. You must rely on your own judgment, discriminate between the wheat and chaff, and make overall sense of what you learn.
Not only are there deeper meanings for specific events than those offered in the orthodox world, there are also meanings that tie events together, that reveal directions and paths in society's trajectory.
Those meanings don't need to stand up to scrutiny as their means of implantation is based on psychological processes and repetition, not on hard evidence.
For example, considering the events of 11 September 2001, if you look closely into the evidence, it becomes apparent that the orthodox meaning - terrorist attack - makes no sense.
There is a standard pattern in the crisis-response scenario.
The real meaning of each crisis scenario, it turns out, is always the same:
The crisis event itself is more or less irrelevant to the scenario.
The event might be imaginary, invented or engineered, for example,
The real meaning of a crisis is always the 'response'.
Implanted meanings are
resistant to outside influence, as we have seen, but they are at the
same time quite fragile if evidence becomes relevant to the
Both parties in such an exchange feel that their knowledge is not respected, and their attempts to point out obvious facts are dismissed out of hand.
If those inside the
bubble won't give your ideas a hearing, triggered as they are by the
barrier memes, it is up to you to take the first step, to introduce
listening into the conversation.
We would do better by seeking to understand where they're coming from and how they see the world.
We need to recognize that it is quite understandable that an intelligent, critically thinking person can believe they are well-informed in the mainstream world.
They get packaged explanations for everything, and they hear the same message from many authoritative voices.
Why should they doubt what 'everyone knows' to be true?
We need to respect that such a person is doing their sincere best to be a well-informed citizen, and we need to include politeness in how we talk to people.
This is a process, an investment in relationship building.
And the investment is
necessary if the conversation is ever to reach more challenging
territory - without triggering defensiveness.
We are already far down
Many of us already try to wake people up from the all-pervasive narrative.
On the internet, people post revelatory articles and jump on comment threads, sometimes risking controversy in conversation. 'Fort Orthodox' remains unshaken by these confrontational approaches.
It doesn't make sense for
us to keep doing the same things and expect anything different to
'Fort Orthodox' is strong but vulnerable.
I invite you to give it a try - experiment in whatever way works best for you and see if you can get a conversation going where before there was a pointless confrontation.
Don't expect anything at
first, just practice a new way of engaging.