Edward Bernays' "Propaganda" Theory Has Been Perfected

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Jim Quinn via The Burning Platform blog,

When six mega-corporations who depend upon other mega-corporations, Wall Street banks and political parties for their revenue, control all of the news and information flowing to the masses, you have all the ingredients needed to control, influence and mold the opinions, tastes and ideas of the people. We are being manipulated by men who constitute the real government, hiding in the shadows and pulling the strings. Nothing reported by these six mega-corporation media mouthpieces for the oligarchs can be trusted. Their job is to coverup, subvert, and obscure the truth. And best of all, they have succeeded in convincing the people we are free and informed. Edward Bernays would be so proud.

h/t flash

The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. …We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. …In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”


Edward Bernays – Propaganda – 1928





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Karaio's picture



The corruption scandal in PETROBRAS closed the door to the Brazilian contractors subsidized by Banksters.

This is a tectonic shift in the works of infrastructure in Brazil!

Opens the market for Chinese and Russian!

Another shot that backfired!





Masterstroke in BRICS!


Karaio's picture

Most predict a huge drop in the shares of companies that manufacture earthmoving machinery ...


Jeff the Terrible's picture
Jeff the Terrible (not verified) Karaio Dec 30, 2014 6:20 PM

Ed couldn't have predicted idiots would put all their data out there for sale to his organizations



Arius's picture

My turn to make my contribution to the many of you who have been so kind to share your thoughts and provide links to various sources.  It has been a university for me. 


I am sure many might know it already but here is a link to the great BBC documentary Century of Self.  If not seen before get a diner a glass of wine and enjoy it ... I love it



Usurious's picture
Usurious (not verified) Arius Dec 30, 2014 6:28 PM



let me know if the BBC has anything on Synthetic Debt.........otherwise I pass

kaiserhoff's picture

Just so.

This concentration of power is the mother of all conspiracies, and the main source of power,

  for TPTB.

KnuckleDragger-X's picture

That's why the internet scares them, too big and too wild so they want to go full Orwell.

SafelyGraze's picture

a bunch of newswriters happen to notice the same thing: economic factors may take some "spring" out of the easter bunny's step this year.

nothing remarkable about that. 

you just report what you observe.

don't make it out to be a conspiracy or anything. 

merely the result of competent professionals reporting the same big-impact story the same way.

MisterX's picture
MisterX (not verified) Arius Dec 30, 2014 6:30 PM

this seems exactly like propaganda to me:


Radical Marijuana's picture

Yes, Arius, that video (although not that Vimeo source) is on my current collected list of Excellent Videos on Money Systems:

spinone's picture

Next watch Adam Curtis' The Power of Nightmares.

noben's picture
noben (not verified) Karaio Dec 30, 2014 7:40 PM

As I’ve said before...

“He who Defines and Controls the secular and religious worldviews, controls EVERYTHING”.

You get one group to define and control the Religious world, and the other to define and control the Secular world.  Eventually, the theory goes, one or the other will become the dominant global force.  When that happens, you use it to conquer the rest, and then impose a World Order.  With a new World Religion. 

Until quite recently (last 250 years), all attempts via the religious or military globalism have failed.  Then some bankers came along, who changed everything:  Their model would be used to conquer almost the entire planet, and is hellbent to conquer the rest.

p.s. Have any astute observers noticed that both sets of worldviews (in the West) are DEBT-based?  You think this is a coincidence?  Think again, little fishes and little sheep.

Radical Marijuana's picture

I agree,


The two State Religions that dominate most today are the monetary system and national security, as combined money/murder systems, which are based on the maximum possible frauds and deceits.

The monetary system is an apparently faith-based public "money" supply, which is made out of nothing by privately controlled banks, as debts for everyone else, which exists as government enforced frauds. That kind of fiat "money" is not overtly backed by anything, but rather is covertly backed by the force of governments demanding that taxes be paid using that kind of "money," as well as by other legal tender laws, including that the government forces itself to operate inside of that absurd State Religion of MAD Money As Debt.

National security has become almost totally based upon the deceits developed through a series of inside job, false flag attacks. There were a long series of such events, with the two most significant being the War on Drugs, which was primarily the war against marijuana, and the War on Terror. Both were wars based on deceits, as deliberately designed self-fulfilling prophesies, whose ultimate purpose was to drive the development of the underlying debt slavery systems.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small “inside” group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many.

--- Smedley Butler

According to that definition, both the monetary system and national security have become rackets. Neolithic civilizations' social pyramid systems were always based on being able to back up lies with violence, which have become more sophisticated systems of legalized lies, backed by legalized violence.

The deeper problems are that the relative success of those systems drives society as a whole to become more psychotically insane, because the violence never makes the lies stop being false, but only continues to enable those enforced frauds to get worse! Furthermore, there could be no genuinely better resolutions of those situations which did not address the deeper reasons how and why society ended up manifesting the fractal patterns of organized crime, through such series of State Religions.

Ghordius's picture

+1, yet... one word sums it up: corruption

piratepiet's picture

"War on Drugs, which was primarily the war against marijuana,"

Why would that be so ? 

Are you Santa Cannabis ? ( I followed the link on your profile )

BadLibertarian's picture

The reason that's so is that the PTB discovered in the 1960's that if an educated population of young people have easy access to it, too many of them start waking up to what's really going on.

Of course if an uneducated population of young people have easy access to it, they just watch cartoons and play video games, so it's a lot less of a threat to the status quo these days.

piratepiet's picture

What you write does not make sense to me.  Do you ascribe mind enhancing qualities to marihuana ?  Are your posts testimony to that ?   

The above author seemed to suggest the authorities especially crack down on marihuana as opposed to other drugs.  I wanted to know why he wrote that.

I suspect prohibition is sometimes a ruse to keep prices high and competitors out.  Think about it.   

BadLibertarian's picture

"Mind enhancing" might be a bit of a stretch, because it seems to imply enhanced IQ, but there's no doubt it amplifies the intensity of certain experiences.

Music, food, sex, movies - these are common examples of things that people report experiencing with greater intensity after consuming cannabis. The neocortex is a pattern recognition network and my guess is that the active compounds do enhance the abilities of portions of that network, but that doesn't mean that it works on everyone in the same way. 

Gangbangers don't suddenly start writing philisophical treatises because they've smoked a lot of blunts (though some of the more clever ones do write some pretty good social commentary and package it up the form of rap music). But it's not uncommon for people who are already educated and empathetic to become even more so when cannabis is added to the mix.

I think the 60's were a tipping point for this effect - we had a young population in this country that was better educated than at any time before (or since), they had aspirations for living in a world that would be substantially different from the one they inherited, in terms of conflict and extreme disparities in wealth distribution, and they had access to weed, which tends to in my opinion, help at least some people see through the illusions of control more easily than they could without it.

I think the elite have plenty of other sources of income (pressing a button on a computer to create debt out of thin air takes a lot less effort than growing and selling a crop), so I think it's more likely that the farcical schedule 1 assignment was motivated much more by their realization that too many people were "waking up" and challenging their authority than any desire to profit from its restriction - though they certainly have done that as well, especially on the enforcement and incarceration side of things.

Think about this for a second - methamphetamine is a schedule 2 drug, while cannabis is schedule 1. The only way that makes sense to me is that the powers that be felt more threatened by a bunch of college students smoking weed and protesting the system than they do by a bunch of redneck tweakers.

piratepiet's picture



Thank you for your answer.

Do not want to sound like a complete bore, but cannot recommend marihuana personally.( I have a friend who is a long time addict and I experienced the damage it does to his life )

Printing money is necessary to exercise power, but not sufficient.  You need to be able to provide people with stuff they want in order to give that money value.  Also think about fractional reserve banking and the role of cash in illegal transactions and connect the dots.  Not that I endorse that.   

Happy 2015


BadLibertarian's picture

I have a friend who avoids it because it gives him headaches. No one thing is a cure-all, and even things that are beneficial and effective for some might be ineffective or even dangerous for others.

I think many if not most people will get something positive from it, especially if they use it as a substitute to reduce or eliminate their usage of alchohol, but I certainly wouldn't give it a blanket endorsement for everyone.

And yes, banks get involved on the money-laundering side of it as well, for sure. But there would be (and are) plenty of ways to profit from it were it legal everywhere, so that is why (along with the history of the 1960's) I lean more towards the threat of civil unrest as being the more likely motivation for the S1 classification and the subsequently announced "war."

Things usually happen for more than one reason, so I'm not saying money didn't play a role - I just think that factor was more of the icing on top of the cake, as far as the decision making process went. It needed to happen for reasons of maintaining the status quo, and any time there's a new regulation invented by the government, there's always at least a few ways to make money from it for those who are connected.

Happy 2015 to you too.

Radical Marijuana's picture

Yes, piratepeit, those were photos of me having fun during a Canadian general election taking place during Christmas time.

The FACTS are that about 75% of the War on Drugs is against marijuana. Many people are initially surprised by that, however, there are no doubts that those are the statistical social facts in North America.

Also, I generally agreed with BadLibertarian's replies to you.

Ghordius's picture

"Have any astute observers noticed that both sets of worldviews (in the West) are DEBT-based?"

debt is the other side of credit, and credit is... natural. human action

debt/credit is like sugar, or corn, or whatever. it's not a problem per se, it's how you handle it. excess of debt is the problem

in ancient times, too much freedom led to slavery. why? because people were allowed to (pawn or) sell their children or even themselves to slavery, often to repay debt

today, in America, young people are allowed to pawn themselves, i.e. their future incomes as collateral for student debt

the result of this excess of unregulated freedom is... debt serfdom

debt contains interest, which used to contain an "insurance" part

you used to lend for 1% more because out of 100, one would default (not real example)

no default possible or allowed... results in the biggest problem about debt

excesses are the problem about debt, not debt per se. the same applies to sugar, corn, and nearly everything. poison is a matter of dosis

tip e. canoe's picture

excesses are inherent to human nature, excesses in debt simply reflect that.   the problem is that those who bear the consequences for those excesses in debt are much more often than not not the ones responsible for the excesses, and those responsible for the excesses are much more often than not rewarded with more excesses.  

then there is the problem of who be the judge who decides who must bear the consequences and who is rewarded with more excesses, which brings us back to those lingering issues of corruption and tribal loyalties.

jmo, but compound interest is an enormous problem about debt-based systems that is seldom, if ever discussed.   this interest on interest (much more often than not, frontloaded and attached to principal) is not only in its nature perverse (as you noted, "interest" was originally considered to be default insurance),

but creates all sorts of perverse incentives in people's intentions, simply for access to capital (since equity capital is effectively nonexistent except for those who already have gobs of capital and/or are willing to have an army of leeches (aka attorneys) to see them through the regulatory swamp).

all for this quest for endless "Growth", which is simply a codeword from a bunch of hungry ghosts starving for yield on something that doesn't really exist at all, except in their minds and the minds of those that they manipulate (see above topic).

besides, whose credit is it anyhow in the first place?   the search for that answer may lead us down rabbit holes that will cause chindit to show up and admonish the tylers once again for catering to lunatics and conspiracy nutters.

until the monopoly on money creation & allocation is broken and individuals are given the "freedom" to access capital without having to go through a nest of rent-seeking parasites to do it (including and especially having to individually bear the consequences for their own excesses), the System will remain FUBAR.

TeamDepends's picture

OK, for the newcomers: Democracy is bad. Really, really bad. Democracy is the opposite of what the Founding Fathers wanted.....

Radical Marijuana's picture

FAKE "democracy" IS "really, really bad."

However, using the general word democracy, as if what exists now is a "democracy," when it is actually a FAKE democracy, is WRONG. In a real democracy, the people would control the public money supply. The original American constitution was supposed to have a public money supply backed by gold and silver, whose value was set by Congress, where that Congress operated in a democratic republic, as the People's representatives, not the banksters' puppets.

What exists NOW is an almost totally privatized public "money" supply. Therefore, what actually exist NOW is pretty well totally the OPPOSITE to what the Founding Fathers wanted ... However, one should only blame that upon a FAKE democracy, whereby the methods of organized crime were applied to the political processes, in order to capture control over the powers of governments, so that those powers were effectively privatized.

One should not blame "democracy" itself for the existence of a FAKE democracy. In order for that to become successful, the public school systems and mass media had to be controlled, so that the vast majority of citizens would be reduced to becoming incompetent political idiots. A principle of a real democracy is that everyone must be educated as much as possible, so that they could be good citizens. The central principle of a FAKE democracy is a FAKE education, whereby the majority of people are brainwashed to believe in bullshit.

Propaganda theory has been perfected in order to maintain the FAKE democracy which was originally made by applying the methods of organized crime, primarily through the funding of all aspects of the political processes, such as through bribery and intimidation, as well as assassinations of those who could not otherwise be bribed or intimidated. The American constitution was systematically destroyed in the ways outlined in this recent article Things To Do In 2015 When You’re Not Yet Dead.

The methods of organized crime, as successfully applied to the political processes, in order to capture control over the monetary system, and then leverage that up and UP, to capture control over all other social institutions, such as the schools and mass media, were revealed by many good historians, such as Carroll Quigley, who wrote:

"powers of financial capitalism
had another far-reaching goal,
nothing less than to create a
world system of financial
control in private hands
able to dominate the
political system of
each country and
the economy of
the world as
a whole ..."

It is a cruel joke to say that America is a "free and democratic" country, AFTER the banksters have already taken control over the public money supply. Whatever America maybe should have been, as a democratic republic operating through the rule of law, has been dead for more than a Century. That the majority of people are only beginning to wonder about that, as it becomes blatantly worse at an exponentially accelerating rate, demonstrates how awesomely successful the best scientific brainwashing that money could buy has been in persuading them to want to believe in absurd bullshit.

NidStyles's picture

"Every socialist has his own utopia."


That includes you junior.

Radical Marijuana's picture

NidStyles, you seem to specialize in making non sequitur ad hominem replies, which are empty of any relevant content to the point of being vacuous stupidity.

I am NOT a "socialist" and I do NOT believe in "utopia." I believe that the supreme ideology is militarism, because the most important thing that people do is kill each other. The real roles of propaganda were developed in that context, because, as the oldest book on the Art of War begins and ends: "success in war depends upon deceits," and "spies are the most important soldiers."

Edward Bernays was doing fundamentally the same things, only in slightly more insightful and scientific ways. His two most significant early "achievements," in my view, were getting more women to smoke tobacco, and providing the public relations framework for the destruction of Latin American governments, by being able to falsely accuse them of being Communists.

Luckhasit's picture

Democracy is two wolves and a sheep discussing what's for dinner. In a democracy, the majority rules. 

The Founding Fathers wanted a republic, you sir are correct.

But you already knew that.

Radical Marijuana's picture

Fake democracies (which are the only kind that actually exist now) are wolves in sheep's clothing fooling much larger groups of sheep.

Real human ecology can be metaporically described as a small group of vicious wolves, using a group of domesticated dogs, in order to herd a much large group of zombie sheeple, which situation is protested by a small group of black sheeple.

In fake democracies, the majority do not rule, a tiny minority, which is the best at being dishonest and violent, rules, by keeping the large majority ignorant and afraid, so that that larger group can be controlled and exploited by a much smaller group.

The famous saying:

"Democracy is two wolves and a sheep discussing what's for dinner."

is quite ridiculous.


BadLibertarian's picture

RM, the one thing I would add to your metaphor is that the zombie sheeple are, for the most part, just as brutal as the wolves - they just aren't as smart. With the right propaganda, it's easy to get them to work as guards in the concentration camps, or the killing fields, or even just press the button in the Milgram pain experiment.

They want to be told what to do, and they want to be able to express their own sociopathic tendencies in officially approved ways that allow them to believe they are still "good" people. So the elite divide them and then exploit those divisions as sanctioned outlets for the brutality of the masses. War being one extreme example of this, and competitive but meaningless sports like football and politics being other safe and approved outlets for their vitriol.

Evolution produced intelligence late. It produced brutality early and often. The individuals who bubbled up into the leadership caste starting with our early history and still today were the ones who had more of this new intelligence thing and figured out that you could control more people with an idea than you could with just the direct an immediate threat of a sword.

Swords don't scale like memes do.

Figuring out how to domesticate the "Roman mob" with the right combination of propaganda and physical threat has been a very long project, and where that effort has been successful, wealth and prosperity have followed - though not for everyone.

The question I still struggle with is this - are the elite wrong?

I hate to even pose that question, but when you look at what the mob does when it does take control - the French revolution being one example, and narco Mexico being another, you can make a pretty good case that at least for most of history, brutal as their behavior has been, we are better off today under the slow and painful progress of the leadership we have had - at least in the West, than we would have been being ruled by a never-ending chain of Robespierres, Bonapartes, and el Chapos.

Which isn't to say that we can't do better in the future. There are more "black sheeple" now, probably than there have ever been before. But they are also pretty easy to get rid of - with the right instructions, the zombie sheeple are always more than happy to eat them.

Radical Marijuana's picture

I do not like it that I have to agree with you BadLibertarian, however, there is no doubt that you are correct!

BadLibertarian's picture

I don't like that conclusion either. It's nicer to think that if enough people would just wake up we could fix things. But I have a hard time finding historical evidence to support that belief.

I'll say this though. I think the "point" of evolution, just like the point of our efforts to build AI, is to produce something that is finally smart enough to re-write its legacy programming. If evolution is a "game," then that's how you win - by understanding what's going on and then being clever enough to figure out how to make things go a different way.

Humans are clearly the species that, thus far, has the best chance at getting over that obstacle and "winning the game," but in the end, we may just not be quite up to the task.

I'm not giving up though. I'm stubborn like that.

screw face's picture

....the Briiics are stack'en and pack'en

doctor10's picture

That "intelligent manipulation" is part of a democracy is in itself a remarkable piece of propaganda.


Such manipulation-especially when done impudently-is ALWAYS the hallmark of a tyranny.

tplink's picture
tplink (not verified) Karaio Dec 31, 2014 12:19 AM

my roomate's half-sister makes $65 /hr on the computer . She has been without work for 7 months but last month her pay check was $14940 just working on the computer for a few hours. you could try this out... www.works3.com

Racer's picture

Look up Adam Curtis


trader1's picture

he had a great blog post recently and is coming out with a new documentary in 2015:




The accepted version is that the neo-liberal right and the free market triumphed. But maybe the truth is that what we have today is far closer to a system managed by a technocratic elite who have no real interest in politics - but rather in creating a system of rewards that both keeps us passive and happy - and also makes that elite a lot of money.

That in the mid 1980s the new networks of computers which allowed everyone to borrow money came together with lifestyle consumerism to create a system of social management very close to Skinner’s vision.

Just like in the mental hospital we are all given fake money in the form of credit - that we can then use to get rewards, which keep us happy and passive. Those same technologies that feed us the fake money can also be used to monitor us in extraordinary detail. And that information is then used used to nudge us gently towards the right rewards and the right behaviours - and in extremis we can be cut off from the rewards.

The only problem with that system is that the pigeons may be getting restless. That not only has the system not worked properly since the financial crash of 2008, but that the growing inequalities it creates are also becoming a bit too obvious. The elite is overdoing it and - passive or not - the masses are starting to notice.

Which makes the alternative - the vision put forward by Lewis Mumford in the film, and which inspired Murray Bookchin - and the Kurds, seem more interesting as an alternative.

Here is Mumford from the film. He starts by criticising the managed utopia - how it turns people into sleepwalkers. He has a great quote:

You reward them. You make people do exactly what you want with some form of sugar-coated drug or candy which will make them think they are actually enjoying every moment of it.

This is the most dangerous of all systems of compulsion. That’s why I regard Skinner’s utopia as another name for Hell. And it would be a worse hell because we wouldn’t realise we were there.

We would imagine we were still in Heaven.”

Mumford then goes on to describe eloquently the alternative, a system of direct democracy where we would all awake and become genuinely empowered - able to take part properly in deciding our destiny.

It is a powerful and optimistic vision of a new kind of progressive politics. But it has one very serious problem.

It means we would have to spend a lot of time going to meetings 

Ignatius's picture


"Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country."

So who would that be, Jim?

joeyman9's picture

That would be those who won't leave you alone.

SickDollar's picture

Off Topic: Exclusive Planet Of the Apes IV footage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxJ_M3AlrdA

RaceToTheBottom's picture

Seemed pretty on topic to me...

Ness.'s picture

This is why I carry a pistol at all times and live in the sticks.  Oh, and near water.  That way if I run out of bullets I can always jump in the lake.  White men can't jump but we can swim.  

will ling's picture
will ling (not verified) SickDollar Dec 30, 2014 7:54 PM

On topic:

Really? before HIS time :


Rainman's picture

Edward Bernays ..... a distinguished capo in the Fabian Socialist movement. Excellent choice.

noben's picture
noben (not verified) Rainman Dec 30, 2014 7:49 PM

And a Master Chef of the Slow-Boiled Frog technique.

sbenard's picture

That is NOT funny!

alexmark2013's picture
Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies - Groucho Marx http://investmentwatchblog.com/politics-is-the-art-of-looking-for-trouble-finding-it-everywhere-diagnosing-it-incorrectly-and-applying-the-wrong-remedies-groucho-marx/
NidStyles's picture

Politics is the wanting of what someone else has and abusing the fear of the masses to obtain it.