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All the Trump men, and Consiglieri

ElectionOracle / US Presidential Election 2016 Aug 02, 2016 - 06:55 AM GMT

By: Michael_T_Bucci


Twentieth-century “Minister of Propaganda and Enlightenment”, Joseph Goebbels, stressed how best to psychologically control the masses. Abstracted by scholars Jowett and O’Donnell, these principles are:

1. Avoid abstract ideas and appeal to the emotions.

2. Constantly repeat just a few ideas and use stereotyped phrases.

3. Give only one side of the argument.

4. Continuously criticize the opponents.

5. Pick out one special “enemy” for special vilification.

“The receptivity of the great masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous,” wrote Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf. “In consequence of these facts, all effective propaganda must be limited to a very few points and must harp on these slogans ..."

Goebbels concurred. “The rank and file are more primitive than we imagine. Propaganda must therefore always be essentially simple and repetitious ... keep forever repeating them in this simplified form despite the objections of intellectuals.”

For example, repeat:

“Make America Great Again!”
“America First!”
“Build The Wall!”

After the Brexit victory in Britain that Donald Trump supported, a major donor said it was won on the basis of emotion, like the Trump campaign, rather than “fact fact fact fact fact”.

Where will “fact fact fact fact fact” fit into Decision 2016: Clinton vs. Trump, if at all? Are anti-intellectualism, press suppression, character assassinations and McCarthyism on the rise along with Donald Trump?

Anti-intellectualism is a component of the Trump movement, but has historical antecedents.

In 1963, Richard Hofstadter analyzed anti-intellectualism in American life. He concluded it was historically embedded in the culture of America, an outcome of its European and evangelical Protestant heritage.

In 1952, Adlai Stevenson was called an “egghead” by Richard Nixon during the 1952 U.S. presidential race. “Egghead” became a pejorative term that replaced the former epithet “highbrow” used to denigrate intellectuals.

In 1969, Richard Nixon’s Vice-President, Spiro Agnew, swiped against Vietnam War protesters calling them “an effete core of impudent snobs who characterize themselves as intellectuals.”

“That [Agnew phrase] perfectly sums up today’s self-delegated protectors of American conservatism,” wrote Roger Stone at pro-Trump, “as, in their desperation to stop Donald Trump at all cost.”

Roger Stone, who once allegedly jumped out of Trump’s inner circle but now has magically returned as ally, is known as a GOP “political provocateur” and “dirty trickster”. He was Nixon’s “dirty trickster” before he was Reagan’s “dirty trickster” before he was George H.W. Bush’s “dirty trickster”, wrote CNN.

On November 22, 2000, Stone disrupted the Florida vote recount effort in Miami-Dade County. Later, the Supreme Court stopped all recounts; Al Gore conceded; and George W. Bush became the next president. Stone’s operation in Florida became known in the trade as the “Brooks Brothers riot”.

Roger Stone had been a protégé of Watergate felon Donald Segretti who wrote the “Canuck Letter” that destroyed Edmund Muskie’s presidential hopes in 1972. Segretti was an “agent provocateur” of Nixon’s infamous 1972 Committee to Reelect the President (CREEP), where Karl Rove, the election guru of George W. Bush, also worked.

Stone recently chided his friend Trump with words that parallel those of Hitler and Goebbels. “Campaigns cannot be a democracy, they must be a dictatorship,” he told

Also dominating the Trump campaign is Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort who, as one acerbic critic wrote, is “an unsavory type who looks like he just stepped out of one of the less successful Godfather movies.”

Over the course of a long lobbying career in D.C., Manafort and his firm “made a fortune fronting for a group of clients once referred to as the ‘torturers’ lobby’,” wrote The Daily Beast.

“[Manafort and company] made millions by representing a rogue’s gallery of clients: dictators, guerilla groups, and despots with no regard for human rights—including one man responsible for mass amputations, and another who oversaw state-sanctioned rape.”

In 1970, Vice-President Agnew denounced journalists as “nattering nabobs of negativism”. In May, 2016, Donald J. Trump said, “[t]he press should be ashamed of themselves” ... they “are not good people” ... “The political press is among the most dishonest people that I’ve ever met.”

But it was what Donald Trump learned from Joe McCarthy’s Red-baiting consigliere, Roy Cohn, that will remain a fixture in the Trump campaign and possible future presidency.

“Mr. Trump’s wrecking ball of a presidential bid ... has been a Roy Cohn number on a grand scale,” wrote The New York Times. “Mr. Trump’s response to the Orlando massacre, with his ominous warnings of a terrorist attack that could wipe out the country and his conspiratorial suggestions of a Muslim fifth column in the United States, seemed to have been ripped straight out of the Cohn playbook.”

And just what were Donald Trump’s ties to the Mob? (May 22, 2016) will tell you.


© 2016 Michael T. Bucci.

(Michael T. Bucci is a retired public relations executive currently residing in New England.)


“Propaganda - Goebbels' Principles”,

Goebbels' Principles of Propaganda, Leonard W. Doob, Public Opinion Quarterly, Fall 1950 pp. 419-442 (PDF)

Hitler, Adolf, Mein Kampf Vol. 1 Ch. VI, “The receptivity of the great masses is very limited ...”


“Anti-intellectualism in American Life”, Wikipedia.

“Egghead”, Wikipedia.

“Trumpism and Reaganism”, Roger Stone and Paul Nagy,, February 15, 2016.

“nattering nabobs of negativism”, Taegan Goddard, Taegan Goddard’s Political Dictionary.

“Donald Trump declares war on the press”, Paul Waldman, Washington Post, May 31, 2016.

“The return of Roger Stone”, Dylan Byers, CNN, April 19, 2016.

“Trump Campaign Now Run by Manafort-Stone “Torturers’ Lobby,” with Many CIA-Backed Overseas Clients”, Webster Tarpley. April 21, 2016.

“Presidential Key Events: George W. Bush”, Miller Center-American President.

“Context of 'February 24-25, 1972: ’Canuck Letter’ Destroys Muskie’s Presidential Hopes; Letter a Nixon Campaign Trick'”, History

“Trump ally Roger Stone says campaign ‘must be a dictatorship’”, Politico, July 19, 2016.

“What Donald Trump Learned From Joseph McCarthy’s Right-Hand Man”, Jonathan Mahler and Matt Flegenheimer, New York Times, June 20, 2016.

“Just What Were Donald Trump's Ties to the Mob?”, David Cay Johnston, Politico, May 22, 2016.


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