Monday, January 16, 2006

The Big Lie

With regards to the huge commotion in the Blogosphere recently, I guess I can only say the following. Disclaimer: I stand on no one side of the two sides. I stand on my side. I'm also not a popcorn eater, I just want to act smart by saying all these.

When caught in a lie, there are usually three ways to go about doing things.

1. Come clean, apologise, and hope people will forget it sooner or later. Of course, one would lose credibility after it, but of course, there would also be respect appropriated.

2. Ignore the whole issue, pray, and hope things die down sooner or later. People have short attention span, so things will die down, sooner or later, but of course, that would mean that there would not only be a loss of credibility but also a subsequent loss of respect but people both on your side and against you.

3. The Chinese would call it beat die and not confess. It means that until death, one would not confess and argue that it wasn't a lie at all but the other party accusing you of lying. People who stand by your side will believe you, people who don't will hate you. It's like things remaining in its status quo just that it's more polarised.

In a circumstance of where evidence is clear that the lie is exposed, I would suggest that the first method be used. Like the Chinese would say, a big husband dare to do dare to admit. After all no man is faliable.

However, in a circumstance where evidence is not very clear and there can be room for manoevre, the third method might actually be more useful. I'm not encouranging lying per se, after all, one lie leads to another lie. But in a tried and tested method, lying straight through the teeth can indeed put things right. This is called The Big Lie in history, formulated and perfected by Nazi Propaganda Minister Dr Josef Goebbels.

More details of Dr Josef Goebbels and The Big Lie can be found in these two Wikipedia links.

If you are too lazy to click on the links and read about such serious political terms, I shall explain The Big Lie as simply as I can put it. It is saying a lie repeatedly that people always hear it and sooner or later after being so accustomed to it take it for real, and to them the lie has become a fact in the eyes of the masses. Dr Josef Goebbels did this to perfection and successfully manipulated the German people by his propaganda campaigns.

Of course, some people want evidence, so everything depends on how much evidence one can have on their side, but evidence cannot dissuade a person unless manipulated into a propaganda material. In fact, I seriously believe that a well presented evidence can make the most effective type of propaganda. I imagine if Dr Josef Goebbels has that type of propaganda on his hands and how much damage he can make with it.

I'm a big fan of propaganda materials, as in I like examining them and evaluating their successes and failures. Everything more or less can be political. Media is a very effective means of propaganda, but how does one manipulate media to their advantage? And another thing to consider is the reach of their media, it is directly proportional to its effectiveness.

And in politics, political allies are also very important factors. A good political ally can help one to garner support from a larger group of people while a weaker ally can quash one's successes. One reason why Hitler was able to make it to where he was on the eve of 1943 was his party members. He had people like Goebbels who was not only fiercely loyal but also one who had the power of communication in his hands. Goebbels did not start out as Hitler's ally early in the party's history, but Hitler won over him. He won fully over him.

Of course, some marriages of convenience might also be very convenient, but later it might still disintegrate. This can be seen as a reverse order of the Seven Warring States and the Spring Autumn Warring States. Although on paper it might sounds as though it is the Qin state vs the rest, but actually there are seven parties fighting all against each other in the wars and no two of them are actually close allies.

All I can say about most people are that they are actually ignorant creatures and do not learn from the experiences of the sages. Think, Sun Zi Bing Fa isn't popular for no reason. Why do people study Napoleon even until today. And Bismarck's Realpolitik vs Kaiser Wilhelm's Weltpolitik. I'm glad to be a history student with a good grasp of Political Science and with a wide reading interest.

Suddenly I feel like going to an office to work... hahahaha~ No way though...

PS: I actually didn't want to put the first paragraph in, no point linking everything I say back to one incident, but I'm afraid. I suddenly thought of something else and I don't want people to misunderstand me otherwise. Please after reading this just forget about the first paragraph. Treat this entry like an entry I've written for my own pleasure. hai...

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