Thanks to Nazi atrocities, the word propaganda has been permanently blacklisted from civilised society. So at this point in history we can’t describe anything with this term without invoking a backlash of politically correct reactions . Yet propaganda is still a very well-practiced art, even to this very day. In fact, many people would be astounded by the kinds of benevolent organizations that still employ such tactics on a regular and ongoing basis.
Nuclear energy is one of those hot topics that drives people with more fear than facts. Even when simply weighing the environmental risks and benefits of this supposedly ‘Green’ energy source, people’s defense mechanisms still lock themselves into rigid and even fearful frames of mind that invariably leave no room for rationale debate. Even while we continue to burn coal and oil at an ever-accelerating rate of global destruction, the subject of atomic energy remains mired in taboo, and dogmatic diatribe which has stunted it’s further development in the western world (with the exception of France) for decades now. While we continue to inflict severe and undeniable harm on the world around us with supposedly safer alternatives.
This confounding ecological paradox leaves one tempted to consider the possibility that Big Oil & Coal have been well-served by our fears of nuclear power and would indeed be quite willing to support the propaganda efforts required to maintain the negative public profile that has dogged ‘nuclear’ for this long…Effectively assuring the utter dominance of a fossil-fueled society, even as you read this.
How’s that for a more realistic conspiracy theory?
Professionals working within PR are well aware of the deep complexity of their field, and recognize the many specialties and separate disciplines within the very wide umbrella term PR. In <a forthcoming piece>, I hope to expound on the immense value (both Social and Economic) that PR holds for both its Clientele and the various public markets they wish to meaningfully connect with. First though, I need to examine what I’ve perceived to be a very alarming veer onto a rather dangerous road for anyone in PR to be trying to drive on at present.
It started with a recent article by Naomi Klein, who although I don’t agree with philosophically, I had to concur was pointing out an obvious risk to credible PR. She postulates, that a recent putsch of Israeli films (about Tel-Aviv in particular) in the Toronto Film Fest, were being seen as a PR campaign for not only Tel-Aviv tourism, but as whitewashing of of the latest negative world reactions to hostilities against Palestinians.
Without getting into that political quagmire, it is clear that PR is a common concept that has been associated with trying to change public perceptions of negative events. For a very longtime now, there are countless other mentions of PR in the daily news and Media, where PR is associated with damage control, or ‘spinning” corporate interests. This well known generality is just the tip of longstanding (melting?) iceberg however.
Take the recent case of Michael Bryant’s run-in with a cyclist…