Shortly before his inauguration the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) briefed John Kennedy on a plan developed during the Eisenhower administration to train Cuban exiles to invade Cuba.
On April 17, 1961, against the advice of his military advisors, John Kennedy approved an assault on Cuba at the Bay of Pigs.
Cuban armed forces defeated the U.S. backed invasion within two days.
On April 21, 1961, Kennedy held a tenth press conference attended by 402 reporters.
The questions are tough and Kennedy looks tired, but he is never insulting, he doesn’t blame the previous President, he doesn’t tell anyone to sit down or shut-up, he is the President and he knows his responsibilities to his office, the Constitution, the press and the American people.
This is how a normal President interacts with the press in a democracy.
Kennedy starts the press conference by saying he doesn’t want to talk about Cuba beyond statements he’d made the day before, announces U.S. support for a UN attack on World hunger, increased insurance dividends for Veterans and the Peace Corps first project. Then he takes questions.
QUESTION: Mr. President, quite respecting your feeling of not going beyond your statement of yesterday on Cuba, there still is in print this morning, quite widely distributed, a published report that you took the decision to continue training Cuban refugees with arms provided by this government, and for releasing ships and fuel for launching the current operations in Cuba. Furthermore, this report says, that you reached this decision against the advice of Secretary Rusk and Mr. Bowles. Now is this true?
THE PRESIDENT:I think that the facts of the matter involving Cuba will come out in due time. I am sure that an effort will be made to determine the facts accurately. As for me, I am confining myself to my statement, for good reason.
QUESTION: Sir, since last Saturday, a certain foreign policy situation has given rise to many conflicting stories. But during that time, reporters in Washington have noticed that there has been a clamming up of information from formerly useful sources. To my knowledge the State Department and the White House has not attempted to take a representative group of reporters and say “these are the facts as we know them.” And this morning we are not permitted to ask any further questions abut this foreign policy situation. In view of the fact we are taking a propaganda lambasting around the world, why is it not useful, sir, for us to explore with you the real facts behind this, or our motivations?
THE PRESIDENT:Well, I think in answer to your question that we have to make a judgment as to how much we can usefully say that would aid the interest of the United States. One of the problems of a free society, a problem not met by a dictatorship, is this problem of information. A good deal has been printed in the paper. I wouldn’t be surprised if those of you who are members of the press would be receiving a lot of background briefings in the next day or two by interested people or interested agencies.
There’s an old saying that victory has a hundred fathers and defeat is an orphan, and I wouldn’t be surprised if information is poured into you in regard to all the recent activities.
Now, I think we see some of the problems, to move from this particular case, in the problem of Space, where the Soviet Union — no reports were made in regard to any experiments that they carried out. “Our man in space” — I saw in a national magazine about some student said the Americans talk a good deal about their man in space. The Soviet Union says nothing and yet it wins. Well, that is one of the problems of a democracy competing and carrying on a struggle for survival against a dictatorship.
But I will say to you, Mr. Vanocur, that I have said as much as I feel can be usefully said, by me, in regard to the events of the past few days. Further statements, detailed discussions, are not to conceal responsibility because I am the responsible officer of the government, and that is quite obvious, but merely because I do not believe that such a discussion would benefit us during the present difficult situation. I think you will be informed and some of the information, based on what I have seen, will not be accurate.
QUESTION: You have practiced what has been described as the quiet diplomacy approach (to Russia). Your speech yesterday seemed to suggest that you have perhaps decided upon another approach?
THE PRESIDENT: No, I wouldn’t attempt to make a judgment or response to that. I think that — I am concerned about these kinds of problems which I just described. I don’t feel satisfied that we have an effective answer to it yet, and I think it’s a matter of the greatest possible concern to all of us, because I think events have been moving with some speed.
The use which Communists (Soviet Union) make of democracy, and then when they seize power, the effectiveness with which they manage the police apparatus so that dissent cannot arise, and so that the people can no longer express their will, liquidation by gunfire of the opposition, or by forcing them out of the country to be refugees -this suggests the kind of problem which we are going to have in this decade.
In my judgment, it is an extremely difficult matter for the free nations to deal with. But I must say that it is a matter to which we must address all of our energy and all of our attention.
Donald Trump might remember this ad; he was six when the ad came out.
Hillary Clinton was four.
The ad was produced by Roy Disney and Citizens for Eisenhower-Nixon.
Its target audience is the post war working class:
The ad below was made after the first presidential debate of 2016.
It is funded by a Right Wing PAC with a curious name: Future 45.
Future 45 describes itself as follows: “Future 45 is an independent organization devoted to educating voters about the challenges facing our country as they prepare to elect the 45th President of the United States.
Our next president will shape the Supreme Court in a way that will influence the direction of our nation for decades to come. The strength of our economy and the security of our nation depend upon electing a strong, proven leader.
While Donald Trump is a proven businessman with a plan to reignite our economy and recover American strength through peace, Hillary Clinton is a politician following the Obama model that has landed us in a fragile economy with slow growth feeling less safe than ever.
Americans understand this and are speaking up”
The Obama model that has landed us in a fragile economy with slow growth feeling less safe than ever?
The sentence reads like it makes sense but upon closer examination it’s says nothing.
We are in a fragile economy that feels less safe than ever.
Children abused by narcissists learn to shut-up and agree
We learn to normalize the brutality of everyday life in an abusive family.
The US Department of Justice defines Domestic Violence as follows:
Domestic Violence is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone.US Department of Justice
We use the term gaslight to discuss an insidious form of domestic violence.
The department of justice defines two critical elements of the pattern related to gaslighting:
Emotional Abuse: Undermining an individual’s sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem is abusive. This may include, but is not limited to constant criticism, diminishing one’s abilities, name-calling, or damaging one’s relationship with his or her children.
Psychological Abuse: Elements of psychological abuse include – but are not limited to – causing fear by intimidation; threatening physical harm to self, partner, children, or partner’s family or friends; destruction of pets and property; and forcing isolation from family, friends, or school and/or work.
The strategic goal of gaslighting is to make a child or partner doubt his perceptions and question his sanity.
As the target becomes more dependent, he begins to doubt his thoughts and opinions.
At its worst the target becomes utterly dependent on his abuser for his sense of reality.
Gaslighting typically happens very gradually in a relationship; in fact, the abusive partner’s actions may seem harmless at first. Over time, however, these abusive patterns continue and a victim can become confused, anxious, isolated, and depressed, and they can lose all sense of what is actually happening. Then they start relying on the abusive partner more and more to define reality, which creates a very difficult situation to escape.
Gaslighting is a mind game played by the most malignant kind of abuser.
This kind of abuser has no use for love or morality.
This kind of abuser must obliterate his target’s capacity for both.
This kind of abuser wants your mind.
How does gas lighting affect a person’s mind?
Gaslighting is psychological and emotional in its effect.
According to the Department of Justice, ″Emotional abuse is any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical in nature. Even though there is no established definition for emotional abuse, emotional abuse can possess a definition beyond verbal and psychological abuse. Blaming, shaming, and name calling are a few identifiers of verbal abuse which can affect a person emotionally.”
As an abuse survivor I was instinctively aware that something was wrong with the way the press and Donald Trump treated Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election cycle.
From stalking Clinton during the debates to character assassination and threats of violence Trump’s campaign for President stank of psychological abuse.
An abusive man and his political party psychologically raped a woman in front of the Nation and no one saw it.
The fundamental purpose of dezinformatsiya, or Russian disinformation, experts said, is to undermine the official version of events — even the very idea that there is a true version of events — and foster a kind of policy paralysis.
One way Putin’s achieves this goal is to deploy an army of internet trolls whose function is to overwhelm and derail legitimate public debate.
A June article by Max Seddon of BuzzFeed reported the Kremlin was spending millions of dollars to pay English-speaking Russians to promote President Vladimir Putin and his policies in U.S. media like Fox News broadcasting and The Huffington Post and Politico news sites. Trolls are reportedly expected to manage multiple fake accounts and post on news articles 50 times a day, often with sentiments as simplistic as “Putin makes Obama look stupid and weak!”
In order to promote its narrative, the Kremlin has adopted a two-fisted strategy, unleashing its troll armies even as it tightens Internet restrictions at home. On August 1, Russia enacted controversial new legislation aimed at muzzling social media, the last bastion of the country’s embattled opposition and a free flow of information about the war in Ukraine.
Anton Nosik, a popular Russian blogger and programmer who is sometimes referred to as the “father of the Russian Internet,” says the Kremlin is falling back on a time-honored strategy in its propaganda war on Ukraine. But this time, he says, the stakes are higher than ever before. (BuzzFeed reports that at least one trolling company—Internet Research Agency in St. Petersburg—is expected to spend more than $10 million in 2014 alone.)
These trolls are out in force in the United States and they aggressively attack anyone who challenges the Kremlin line.
The following comment is an example of skilled online gaslighting:
Let’s break it down:
My correspondent appreciates my opinion and tells me what part of it is true. He asks for specific instances of the violations I referenced as if he has no access to Google. He then goes on to repeat the Kremlin line that all governments are cruel and corrupt and illustrates it with the logical fallacy that an alleged crime by Obama obviates my right to be outraged by the possible theft of the 2016 election.
He closes by saying my fears are an artistic exaggeration (i.e. crazy) and invites me to share more of my fears.
Distort, devalue and demean.
The comment is a gaslight from the opening sentence to the closing line.
Imagine thousands of paid media trolls and automated trollbots at work 24 hours a day fabricating a false reality.
A collection of leaked documents, published by Moy Rayon, suggests that work at the “troll den” is strictly regulated by a set of guidelines. Any blog post written by an agency employee, according to the leaked files, must contain “no fewer than 700 characters” during day shifts and “no fewer than 1,000 characters” on night shifts. Use of graphics and keywords in the post’s body and headline is also mandatory. In addition to general guidelines, bloggers are also provided with “technical tasks” – keywords and talking points on specific issues, such as Ukraine, Russia’s internal opposition and relations with the West. On an average working day, the workers are to post on news articles 50 times. Each blogger is to maintain six Facebook accounts publishing at least three posts a day and discussing the news in groups at least twice a day. By the end of the first month, they are expected to have won 500 subscribers and get at least five posts on each item a day. On Twitter, the bloggers are expected to manage 10 accounts with up to 2,000 followers and tweet 50 times a day.
Putin’s gaslighting has the same strategic goal as a guy who psychologically tortures his wife.
He wants us helpless:
In most civilized nations psychological abuse is a considered a crime.
By now, July 25, 2017, we have learned that the US Senate had a vote of 51 to 50 which allows debate for the repeal of Obamacare/ ACA/ Affordable Care Act. Senators will be making several attempts to repeal healthcare that is one- sixth of the US economy. Some amendments will require 60 votes and some 50 where Vice President Mike Pence would be required to cast the tie breaking vote.
I was very disappointed and let down when Senator John McCain came onto the Senate floor, to make clear that while he didn’t support the current bill, he agreed that they should at least begin debate on the health legislation. And he did this after flying across the country due to his absence because of his recent surgery and a brain cancer diagnosis. Still, he delivered a sobering rebuke to GOP leaders about their resistance to work on a healthcare…
On a truly fae whim, I’m doing a lightning contest. Woot! I’m giving away a couple of faery favorite things.
Until 6 PM Eastern Only!
I’m very sorry, but I have to limit this to readers in the USA only.
How to enter
If you are in the USA, leave a comment on Episode 3. If you’ve already commented, they you are already entered!
I will assign a number to each person who comments from the USA. Then I will use a random number generator to match the winning numbers to the commenter. If you win, I’ll email you asking for your street address so Amazon can ship the prize. (Unfortunately that only works within the USA.)