The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words. - Philip K. Dick
The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. - Edward Bernays
The #1206 “fiction” series continues …….
A small group of well-dressed men and women sat around a boardroom table, all studying the information being displayed on the projector screen at the end of the room. Of particular interest to them were the heated interactions between a number of people on Twitter.
“As you can see”, noted the presenter, “The communications team of the other party is clearly presenting a message that is difficult to interpret and is oftentimes bullying, intimidating or insulting in nature. Many times their messages defy common sense, common courtesy and common competence levels and are often at odds with the people and even the political party they represent. How do you explain such behavior from so-called communication experts?”
One of the attendees cleared their throat and replied. “It is intriguing that in an organization with an unlimited budget, such wilful or accidental incompetence and disrespect could exist. In this day and age, the mastery of communication and interaction with the public is practically a no-brainer and so this doesn’t make any sense at all. But since you asked the question, I’m sure you already have the answer.”
The presenter smiled and paused in theatrical fashion before answering.
“What would you say if I told you that in fact, this communication team works for us, with a mission of relaying sensitive information back to us when needed while at the same time, intentionally spreading a confusing or disrespectful message to the public on behalf of the other party?”, he asked.
There was a pregnant pause in the room before another attendee broke the silence. “While that is quite entertaining”, he mused, “the fact is that anyone perceived to be wilfully leaking information or intentionally subverting the public message would be easily and quickly ferreted out and dismissed. So such an assertion on your part would be fantasy at worst and successful for only a short duration at best. In business, such individuals are fired, sued or both and in very short order.”
“Perhaps”, countered the presenter, “But what if I told you that our greatest achievement was not in placing rogue elements within their communication team to subvert the message to the public but in fact, was the placement of someone who would ensure that they couldn’t be fired?”
“You’re trying to tell us that we’ve infiltrated the other party at such a level?”, asked one of the attendees incredulously.
“How else could you explain the lengthy duration of such incompetent, inconsiderate, inconsequential communication to the public or access to information that is known only by a few ministers, their assistants and of course, their communications staff?”, replied the presenter.
“Who is this ultimate mole you claim to have established?”, asked another attendee.
“It is this person”, replied the presenter as the projected image changed from the Twitter feed to a photograph.
One of the attendees jumped up from the table and yelled “That is impossible!”
“Maybe”, said the presenter as he smiled, “But perhaps this email will change your mind”. As he spoke, the projector image changed again.
The room fell silent as the impact of what they were reading sank in.
The ultimate mole had been inserted but hidden in plain sight.
Very plain sight.
To be continued.
© 2014 – Harry Tucker – All Rights Reserved
All characters and political parties implied in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, or political organizations is purely coincidental. Suggestions that this is in reference to Alberta politics is purely speculation or conjecture.
A Confession – April 26, 2014
I wrote this blog post on March 5, 2014 as I watched the PC Party melt down from the inside over the activities of then Premier Redford and the PC Party’s inability to control the message and optics of the meltdown.
It seemed to me at the time that the inability to control the message seemed due to excessive ego, incompetence or ….. an intention on someone’s part to destroy the Party.
As I watch the latest debacle (Missing Redford spotted having dinner in Palm Springs) develop, I am still left wondering which of the three is closest to the truth.
This series, a departure from my usual musings, is inspired as a result of conversations with former senior advisors to multiple Presidents of the United States, senior officers in the US Military and other interesting folks.
While this musing is just “fiction” and a departure from my musings on technology, strategy, politics and society, as a strategy guy, I do everything for a reason and with a measurable outcome in mind. :-)
This “fictional” musing is a continuation of the #1206 series noted here.