Propaganda war

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By Ver F. Pacete

As I See It

Thursday, January 17, 2013

POLITICS at any angle is an art. Oscar Ameringer calls it as the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich by promising to protect each other from the other. He who wishes to wage a political war should first estimate the cost. The objective is victory and could be obtained through an effective propaganda.

A political party will always come up with its own propaganda by using the best of minds, the best talents, the best strategy, and the best of tri media. The information may be true or false, but it is always carefully selected for its political effect. Facing the political enemy is considered a problem and it could be addressed by using the two levels of problem solving. Come up with strategy which is your broad plan of action and apply your tactics which are the means for carrying out strategy.

In Philippines history, the “ilustrados” of mid-19th century played vital roles as “propagandistas” in pursuing nationalistic goals. The Noli Me Tangere and the El Filibusterismo of Rizal awakened the Filipinos to face their social responsibility. The La Solidaridad was backed up by men of honor... Graciano Lopez-Jaena, Marcelo H. delPilar, Mariano Ponce, Antonio Luna and Jose Rizal. The fight was uphill but victory was attained.


The US and Filipino soldiers persevered to wait for the outcome of the Second World War in the Philippines because Gen. MacArthur made true his promise of returning to the Philippines to liberate the islands from the Japanese. "I shall return." This served as a good propaganda statement. In critical times and normal times, we always look forward to a good propaganda to align our motives and aspiration.

Ramon Magsaysay was the “man of the masses.” When he won as president, he made true his promise. He opened the gates of Malacañan Palace. Sen. Jose Locsin of Silay coined the “Filipino First Policy” for Carlos Garcia when he was running for president. Garcia won. Ferdinand Marcos was a propagandist by himself. He got Imelda for his visual presentation.

Marcos stayed long in power by making his people believe that "Mabuhay ang Pilipino." Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. had the power of speech to move his people against the dictatorship of Marcos. Erap made good slogan for the “mahihirap.” Noynoy Aquino became president because the Filipinos believed in his “matuwid na daan.”

Politicians in the local front today have also their battle of words as a part of their propaganda. Name calling is a low grade propaganda not deserving for statesmen. Barker and divers do more harm than good. From the surface, we now see who are barking at the moon and who are promising a pie from the sky. Fear makes the politicians restless; so they fall to shouting in order to keep up their courage without them knowing that they reveal their real color.

It takes two to tango. A politician cannot just fight himself. He needs to be irritated by an opponent politician so that he can react and both of them could look funny. Certain activities cannot be performed alone... such as quarrelling, making love, and dancing the tango. It's really fun and funny. Good propagandists should strike while the iron is hot. When you read the papers or listen to the radio commentaries, propagandists are taking advantage of favorable circumstances while they last. They don't wait for the sleeping dogs to bark.

We, the people, should not swallow hook line and sinker. We have to use our common sense which is not usually common among us. We let the propagandists understand that they can lead the cow or the sheep to water, but they can't make them drink. Never give a sucker an even break!

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on January 17, 2013.


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