Those who are able to set and control the lexicon, phraseology and over all terms of any debate, will ultimately be able to control the debate’s outcome. This reality can be seen on a daily basis in many corridors. Even those who may have no exposure to the slightest background information on any given debate, stand to be automatically be swayed by certain key words or expressions.
If one scowls at a “regime”, the audience immediately knows that the ruling body in question is somehow more sinister than a “disagreeable government”. If one talks about “settlers” in Palestine, a listener might think of settling in to life in an erstwhile abandoned pioneer’s village. But if one talks about “colonists”, a listener realises that the issue at hand is about the theft of land that is owned and lived upon by an existing population. If one talks about “moderate rebels” one might think of schoolyard rebellion against authority or even fictional characters from Star Wars. Taking things a step further, if one talks about “militants” one might think of some sort of legal auxiliary army. But when one describes “terrorists”, those listening will immediately think of illegal forms of violence conducted primarily against civilians.
But such deception tactics designed to force an opponent in a debate to defend not only their position but their language, are used not only in matters of war and peace but even in seemingly mundane elections in placid, economically declining western Europe.
There is perhaps no election in the world more mundane than a vote for local politicians in England. It is for this reason that yesterday’s local English elections have gained little international coverage. However, when one realises that the master of deception behind the mainstream media narrative is none other than the internationally infamous Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, then one realises that the English elections are an instructive example of how setting the terms of the debate can make war appear like peace, freedom appear like slavery and ignorance appear like strength.
In the run up to the election Sadiq Khan stated that his schismatic Labour party would perform well in Westminster, Kensington and Wansdworth. This would be like American radio host Alex Jones saying that he could win the state of California by a landslide in a US Presidential election or to put it another way, it is like saying that Rosie O’Donnell could win Texas in a landslide.
While the London ‘districts’ of Westminster, Kensington and Wandworth are increasingly multicultural and are experiencing ever more of a class divide, the fact remains that these places are still primarily home to the archetypal demographic who vote anything but Labour. They are mostly wealthy, upper class and white and those who do not fit such a description are typically Saudi, Qatari, Emirati or Kuwaiti billionaires who don’t vote in English elections in any case. Occasionally during General Elections (national elections), if everyone who is young, working class or of an ethnic or religious minority gets out to vote, they can just about squeeze by with getting a Labour member in, but in local elections which favour sub-sections of these wealthy areas that are the most wealthy and where few people except the old, wealthy and retired bother to vote, this is almost impossible.
To put it in a different way, in virtually promising a Labour win in Westminster, Kensington and Wandsworth, the Mayor of London promised the impossible and what’s more is that he almost certainly knew that he was promising the impossible. Sadiq Khan has been in London politics long enough to know where the wind blows in what direction.
Of course, Sadiq Khan almost certainly said what he said on purpose. Sadiq is known to be an arch-opponent of Labour’s leftist leader Jeremy Corbyn and furthermore, he seeks to position himself as a future neo-liberal leader of Labour in spite of his generally abysmal record as Mayor.
But since the mainstream media responded to Sadiq’s statements and proceeded to frame the terms of the debate as Sadiq set them, last night’s election in which Jeremy Corbyn’s party not only won but won in a more convincing and geographically diverse manner than it did in the previous local elections, is being framed by the mainstream media as a Corbyn/Labour loss.
Had Sadiq and his allies not framed the terms of the election as they had, there would be no choice but to acknowledge that under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, the party not only came in first place, but won by a respectable margin with wide geographic spread.
Imagine therefore, if the mainstream media and duplicitous politicians are able to paint such a patently dishonest picture of a straightforward and rather mundane election in England, how they are able to use these tactics to obscure the realities that are already obscured by the fog of war and civil strife?
The fact of the matter is, if one promises that a new Mercedes is able to hover as it drives, one is going to be disappointed when one learns the truth. But if one promises that the new Mercedes is a faster and more comfortable car than a 30 year old Volkswagen, one will feel happy in the Mercedes.
The fact is that the UK mainstream media that has cheered for war in Iraq, Libya and Syria on the basis of false information and has rushed to condemn Russia over equally false information is now saying that a man whose party just won an election has in fact lost an election. This is what happens one those who frame the terms of the debate in insincere ways are allowed to do so without a robust and truthful challenge.