The IUSB Vision Weblog

The way to crush the middle class is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. – Vladimir Lenin

Lessons in Humanity: Habeas Corpus and the Presumption of Innocence

Posted by iusbvision on December 19, 2010

Aside from the important legal and philosophical points addressed in this brilliant scene. There is also a communications theory lesson as well. Often we have talked about “Attitude Change Propaganda” (ACP). Attitude change propaganda is a tactic elite media journalists, academics with an agenda, and political hit men have used for years and continue to use to this day. ACP is when you pick out some of the facts and present them with an attitude; an emotionalism that implies a narrative. This is what Admiral Satee and her interrogator use quite effectively in this scene (until she takes it to far and the gig is up).

A classic example of this ACP tactic is at 4:27 in the video when the interrogator asks, “Captain can you tell me just what happened on star-date 44390 – let me refresh your memory”. ABC used this exact same tactic in the Charlie Gibson interview of  Sarah Palin when he asked, “the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war”. What ABC was counting on the viewer not knowing is that there are six Bush Doctrines, and how was Sarah supposed to remember which one was articulated on which date? She answered with one of the six recognized Bush Doctrines and Charlie Gibson said it was wrong and threw another in her face.

At 10:00 in the video Captain Picard gives the same warning that appears in Federalist Paper #1 by Alexander Hamilton:

Worf:  I believed her. I helped her. I did not see what she was.

Picard: Villains who twirl their mustaches are easy to spot. Those who clothe themselves in good deeds are well camouflaged.

Worf:  I think, after yesterday people will not be so ready to trust her.

Picard: Maybe, but she, or someone like her will always be with us waiting for the climate in which to flourish spreading fear in the name of righteousness (A classic example of why we should not trust those who use a crisis to gain power**). Vigilance Mr. Worf – that is the price we have to continually pay.

 

**

Rahm is best known for saying, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before,” at the Wall Street Journal CEO Council in Washington, D.C. on November 19, 2008.

 

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