Saturday, June 6, 2020

Comments by Bruce

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  • It’s a very interesting article on how difficult it is to get the message out there. It reminds me of the mechanisms in the propaganda model theory of Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky to explain systemic biases function in the media. The theory postulates five general classes of “filters” that determine the type of news that is presented in news media. These five classes are: Ownership of the medium, Medium’s funding sources, Sourcing, Flak, and “fear ideology”; quote taken from Wikipedia.

    The other side gets around our common sense filters by telling feel good stories, or putting fear into us.
    Last week on NPR they had a feel good story of a mother who finds help in Zolft to address her panic attacks during her pregnancy, and a researcher whose paper shows that it’s safe to use; very limited metrics were used to come to the conclusion.
    They sugar coat this drug advertisement with a mother’s story.
    As my wife pointed out doctors warn expecting mothers not to eat raw mike cheese, or shell fish, but Zoloft is no problem!?

    Could MIA information be disseminated using a feel good story, to get around the filters?
    There might be less aggressive filters with public media, and they are desperate for material.

    This is how it would play out.
    Sugar coat:
    A feel good story of a likable person who has carefully weaned herself/himself off of xxx, xxx, xxx, and xxx, and is now much happier and healthy; along with their significant other.
    By becoming more mindful, communicative, and engaged with the people around him or her
    And is coming to terms with past issues.
    The message:
    Dr x or researcher x, associated with the x institute, has recently done a meta-analysis of XXX type drugs, where the drugs were shown to be harmful in the long term, and to be no more effective than active placebos.
    Sociologist x has shown that people who are part of supportive communities are more resilient.
    Dr XX or researcher XX has said that in many instances drugs are prescribed to people (like the feel good person of the story) without getting to the root of their issues, which ends up masking their anguish, and causing long term physical and metal damage.