When Media Go To War

Anthony DiMaggio

A more modern update of the Chomsky-Herman propaganda model as seen through the lens of the George W. Bush and Barack Obama incursions into the middle east during the early to late Aughts, showing in the least that the propaganda model is still alive and well. It is somewhat of an easy target though, as how most of the information leading to the middle-eastern invasions being mostly lies was already a known quantity after 02004 and 02005.

It is interesting for its notable (but somewhat limited) studies into how when juggling between the positions of powered interests and greater public opinion, mainstream media systems and similar elite media systems will tend to lag behind the representation of greater public opinion by at least two to four years, but it could not conclude if this was due to active suppression by powerful interests, or if it was just the slow-moving inertia of a large and disperse system. It also solidifies the propaganda model as a system of analysis from without, rather than from within.

I think the scholarship into the public relations industry has an interesting theoretical capacity. It could, in theory, document the effectiveness of government media control in a much more wholesale way than the pure-bred Chomskyists could accomplish on their own. Fortunately or not, the Chomsky school of media criticism might retain a certain level of favouritism that the other school could never muster, simply because public relations scholarship risks becoming as untrustworthy as the thing it inspects.

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