A Mind Infinite

Infinity: The Views of a Dreamer

Terror Sells

Terror Sells

Written by Aaron Peterson



If there is a story that is capable of selling the most it’s a story capable of generating fear. Terrorism generates that fear and leaves the imagination to do the rest, even when the implications the story gives are completely implausible. It’s time to face the fact that terrorism sells better than any other type of story capable of being printed, and it’s easy to sell to the public too. A story about an enemy preparing sinister plots against them, an invisible enemy lying in wait just preparing to strike. The enemy doesn’t have to be there, all that is needed is an active imagination a willingness to run with it and it can be pushed all the way home. Terror sells because it represents the abstract fears of people in post-modern society living in an age where no real enemy exists and the search for an enemy is ever present with the paranoia manifested by popular society. The government wants an enemy, it needs an enemy how else can it justify it’s military expansion outward at such a level that the question gets asked how it isn’t imperial. Terrorism is that easy enemy, it’s an abstract idea. The idea of terrorism can be used to justify any action even the most heinous with ending statement being “if the terrorists had won, they would have done far worse.” The people as an extension sit docile waiting for the news of the enemy… The terrorists, in sensational stories of global plots, horrendous actions and violence.

Terror has always sold. In the 1970’s, terror rode the West German state. The Red Army Faction was the go to blame for everything bad that was happening in Western Germany. It couldn’t be Western Germany, it had to be the terrorists of the Red Army Faction responsible for sabotage! The media abused the situation greatly with every Spiegel article taking greater liberties on what the truth was and twisting it around. A fiction of a great terrorist network in Moscow was built with cronies waging terror against Western Europe in a campaign to assault it’s very morale. The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum by Henreich Blum,  focused on the effect that the tabloids were having during the 1970’s in Western Germany to sensationalize everything to the cause of the day– terrorism!  The book follows the character Katharina Blum a housekeeper who faces an assault by a overly interesting tabloid reporter who ruins her life. It shows the ability for disinformation, the so-called bank robber as created by tabloid journalism is really a army deserter who had stolen money before deserting. In this respect, Katharina Blum is potentially every ordinary person who can be twisted as to being a ‘sympathizer’ of the “enemy.” The army deserter represents a section of society who drop out not seeing the point, losing interest. In this respect, the deserter is the ultimate enemy. Look at Bradley Manning, ex-military who was crucified for daring to blow the whistles and reveal a wide range of human rights violations. The media went in a frenzy shouting from the top of the their lungs in line with the government of course that he was in league with the terrorists for letting down the military effort for showing the truth of what is happening. Yes, if you break the line of the official ‘patriotic’ stance, you are in league with the enemy… It’s the doctrine of nationalism, to label everyone as an enemy of the state whether only in words or otherwise who poses a risk to the ability of the state to keep it’s mistruths together.

Edward Snowden was crucified by the media in the United States for the revelations of mass surveillance not only against American citizens but of the word. The media followed along with government commentators enthusiastically presenting a narrative of building him to be an agent of China, later Russia that was acting to build discontent.  A story that was built out of Snowden’s fleeing of the United States after releasing proof of what was happening to any government that wouldn’t extradite him to the United States, for the rightful fear that if he was turned over to the United States he would be charged with treason for daring to reveal what was ongoing in the United States. Absurdly, Secretary of State John Kerry called Snowden out saying that if he “were a man” he would return to the United States.  The macho language of making your opponent seem like less of a man for his willingness to survive took hold once again. The Snowden story took off in many times sensationalist forms where Snowden was presented as an enemy… A sit down with Snowden was presented in mass for US viewers with the catchy label of “Terrorist or Patriot”, with the oh so sinister commentary voice. Why the sensationalism, why the levels of absurdity instead of facts? People don’t want to hear facts, it isn’t profitable. Facts are made out of logic, if you show only facts people will begin thinking logically. When people think logically they assess the conditions and figure out for themselves what is going on… Apparently that’s good for no one.


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