by Gene Howington, Guest Blogger
“This thing, what is it in itself, in its own constitution? What is its substance and material? And what its causal nature [or form]? And what is it doing in the world? And how long does it subsist?” – Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, VIII – 11
“All war is deception.” – Sun Tzu, The Art of War
As previously discussed, “we need to differentiate between the terms ‘strategy’ and ‘tactics’. Strategy is defined in relevant part by Webster’s as ‘the science and art of employing the political, economic, psychological, and military forces of a nation or group of nations to afford the maximum support to adopted policies in peace or war’. Tactics, by contrast, is defined in relevant part by Webster’s as ‘the art or skill of employing available means to accomplish an end’ and ‘the study of the grammatical relations within a language including morphology and syntax’. By better understanding the tactics of propagandists, you not only gain a certain degree of immunity from their influence, but insight into their strategic ends.”
Today we will address strategy and tactics in the form of a case study. The context is the so-called “War on Drugs” and state’s efforts to legalize marijuana for medical and recreational use. The strategy is to exacerbate so called drug crime violence by obliquely attacking the burgeoning states effort to legalize marijuana and those who trade in legal marijuana by deliberately putting them at risk. The primary tactic in question is misdirection. When analyzing propaganda, it’s important to ask who brings the message, what do they want me to think, why do they want me to think it and how do they benefit? The leader of this campaign against the American people? United States Attorney General Eric Holder. Let’s examine the what, why and who benefits from what Mr. Holder wants you to think.