OGB Podcast #51- Edward Bernays’ Propaganda
In this week’s episode, Scott and Karl discuss Edward Bernays’ 1928 book Propaganda. Referred to as “the father of public relations,” and “the Machiavelli of the 20th century,” Bernays pioneered the scientific technique of shaping and manipulating public opinion which he famously dubbed “engineering of consent.”
His seminal work, Propaganda, is a look behind the veil of the most powerful and influential institutions orchestrating the unseen mechanisms of society. In Karl’s own words, “It’s a very good book you want to throw across the room.”
Tune in to hear a fascinating discussion about the methods, uses, and ideas behind Bernays’ influencers to regiment the collective mind.
- Bernay’s family history and connections
- About the author overview
- Discussion of who the book was written for
- Propaganda meaning
- government role in propaganda
- Neitzche on his vision of the “Bronze Age” people
- Scott and Karl discuss problems with propaganda
- WWII influences and methods
- Entertainment and propaganda
- Scott and Karl discuss Bernays’ ethics
- Ideas not originating witht the voting populous
- OGB competitors for attention
- Discussion of “weapon propaganda”
- Yellow journalism abuses
- Is propaganda easier to do now?
- Plans for future podcast topics
Resources/Articles/People Mentioned In The Podcast
- Anna Freud
- Mark Bernays-Randolph
- Torches of Freedom.”
- The Lost Tools Of Learning
- Chet Baker
- Lee Morgan
- Genealogy Of Morality
- The Republic
- Memoirs Of A Superfluous Man
- Pope Urban VIII
- “It’s A Wonderful Life” being propaganda for fractional reserve banking
- Allan Boom
- Oswald Spengler
- Horseradish Festival
- yellow journalism
- Foundation by Isaac Asimov
- The Boxer
- Thomas Kinkade
- Iron John
- A Christmas Carol
Scott Hambrick: I’m Scott Hambrick.
Karl Schudt: I’m Karl Schudt.
Scott Hambrick: Today we are going to discuss Edward Bernays 1928 foundational book (I think) Propaganda. It’s going to be hard.
Karl Schudt: I just want to lay it out there. I kind of keep it on the down low on podcasts.
Scott Hambrick: Uh oh, wait a minute. What is “it”?
Karl Schudt: My tendency to put on a tinfoil hat to keep the aliens from reading my mind.
Scott Hambrick: Hats off, Karl.
Karl Schudt: Because it can get self-indulgent, you know, you start thinking in those ways and then you start seeing things everywhere and it’s always aliens in the end. I just want to lay out three facts and then you dear listener can make of these facts what you like as we go on to talk about this interesting book, Propaganda. So, Edward Bernays’ mother was Anna, Anna Freud (Sigmund Frued’s sister), and his grand nephew is…Is it Mark Bernays-Randolph?
Scott Hambrick: That’s it.
Karl Schudt: Who is the founder of Netflix.
Scott Hambrick: Co-founder. I don’t want to be that guy but somebody that’s listening to this is going to do the “actually, um…”
Karl Schudt: Pardon me: cofounder. I’m not going to draw any connections there; I’ll let you do it.
Scott Hambrick: Interesting Thanksgiving dinners at their house. So, Bernays wrote this book, Propaganda is the name of the book, written in 1928, Bernays (some have called him the “Machiavelli of the 20th century.” On the back cover, I’m reading this edition that was printed by Desert Books, by permission of the estate of Edward Bernays. If you go to Amazon, you’ll see it has an orange cover with a darker orange stripe on the front of the thing. And on the back cover of the thing and I didn’t know this, I didn’t read the back cover of this ‘til after I read the book. Carl, did you read the back cover?
Karl Schudt: No.
Scott Hambrick: I would like to read this, “About the author. The nephew of Sigmund Freud, Edward Bernays (1891-1995) pioneered the scientific technique of shaping and manipulating public opinion which, he called engineering of consent. During WWI he was an integral part, along with Walter Litman, of the U.S committee of public information: a powerful propaganda machine that advertised and sold the war to the American people as one that would make the world safe for democracy. The marketing strategies for all future wars would be based on the CPI model (that’s the Committee on Public Information). Over the next half century Bernays, combining the techniques he had learned with the C.P.I, and the ideas of Litman, and Freud, fashioned a career as an outspoken proponent of propaganda for political and corporate manipulation of the population earning the moniker “the father of public relations.” Among his powerful clients were President Calvin Coolidge, Proctor and Gamble, CBS, the American Tobacco Company, and General Electric. In addition his propaganda campaign for the United Fruit Company, in the early 1950s, led directly to the C.I.A’s overthrow of the elected government of Guatemala.”
Karl Schudt: The estate of the author approves it.
Scott Hambrick: That’s what I’m assuming because that’s what the front matter tells me.
Karl Schudt: Some things jump out at me from that, one in particular “the marketing strategies for all future wars.” So, this is one of those “lightbulb” moments for you, you turn it on and say, “oh my gosh, they market for wars.”
Scott Hambrick: Yeah.
Karl Schudt: Of course they do.
Scott Hambrick: This guy wrote the book about propaganda. Can we get meta for a minute?
Karl Schudt: Sure.
Scott Hambrick: Is this book propaganda? Can we trust the book? Before we even talk about it, can we trust it?
Karl Schudt: Well, who’s it written for?
Scott Hambrick: It’s written for his peers.
Karl Schudt: It’s not written for me because it makes me less likely to believe anything about anything. It’s a book, that if it gets out, can destroy the basis of propaganda.
Scott Hambrick: Well, he talks about that and we’ll get to that in a second. I think we can trust it. I don’t see manipulative rhetoric in here. I think it’s very matter-of-fact and very step by step. That was my take. What do you think?
Karl Schudt: I thought this is the kind of book that Gorgias would have written. Gorgias was an…
Scott Hambrick: A sophistry manual.
Karl Schudt: yeah, how to influence public opinion. And it has the same gaps that Gorgias does when he talks to Socrates, Socrates says, “Well, for what purpose? Do you teach justice as well?” “Well, of course I do,” says Gorgias. And Bernays and Heral say, “Well of course we only use propaganda for things that are socially good.” Well, I looked up in a public information encyclopedia, the list of campaigns of Edward Bernays, and there’s a few of them. Just go through ‘em- cigarettes for women.
Scott Hambrick: I wanted to talk about that. Did you read about that?
Karl Schudt: “Torches of Freedom.” He connected it to suffragettes.
Scott Hambrick: So this American Tobacco Company hired him and he’s trying to get more people to smoke cigarettes.
Karl Schudt: Women especially.
Scott Hambrick: And he wasn’t doing very well and he said “well who’s not smoking?” Well it’s ladies (really) that’s the big untapped market, so they marketed it to ladies, and didn’t have a lot of luck. But the story that I have heard is that he got suffragettes, who were marching for the right to vote, to smoke and got video of them on silent movie newsreels and in newspapers. And then it became edgy, cool, young, hip women that smoked, there you go.
Karl Schudt: Makes me think, “Did my grandmother see one of these ads?” back in 1925, and pick up smoking?
Scott Hambrick: Maybe.
Karl Schudt: You know to be “edgy.” Fluoridation of the water. Had Coolidge have breakfast with actors so actors having access to the white house and vice versa. The United company thing; hair nets, soap (ivory soap), dixie cups (disposable dixie cups). The soap thing is interesting because he talks about it in the book. You promote soap carving contests, which is brilliant because one- it puts your soap in the public eye- and two- they gotta by soap to carve it. They’re buying a lot of your product that they’re not actually using. I don’t know. How do you feel, were you mad at this book?
Scott Hambrick: No. It’s a look behind the veil. We get to see that there’s a class of people that sort of dispassionately come up with these plans to change the way people think about things and to implant ideas in their minds. There’s some stuff about him that I think is not good. Like, I’m not sure what the thinks truth is? (We’ll talk about that here in a minute.) I’m not sure what he thinks the good life is, but his project is not to just subjugate people. I think he ends up doing that. But he’s just an American pragmatic guy, he’s like “I’m trying to sell soap. What’s the big deal? Soap sales are up. People are clean, don’t look at me.”
Karl Schudt: Yeah.
Scott Hambrick: But he’s ultimately fucking with people. I don’t like that.
Karl Schudt: I’m not sure he sees them as people: is my prblm.
Scott Hambrick: Well, they’re economic units, you know.
Karl Schudt: I want to dig into some of this so we’ll get into the book now…unless you have something else preparatory?
Scott Hambrick: No, let’s go, let’s go.
Karl Schudt: On page thirty-eight of the orange edition, he’s trying to clear the way for the word “propaganda,” that is not in fact a bad thing, and one of the ways he argues (it’s fascinating to me) he’s arguing democracy is kind of a sham, that there’s invisible governors that are really running the show. Right at the bottom of the page, at the paragraph at the bottom of the page, “in theory, every citizen makes up his mind on pubilc questions in matters of private conduct. In practice, if all men had to study for themselves the abstruse economic, political, and ethical data involved in every question they would find it impossible to come to a conclusion without anything.” I think that means “about anything” there’s a few typos in this book. “We have voluntarily agreed to let an invisible government sift data and high spot the outstanding issues so that our field of choice should be narrowed to practical proportions. From our leaders in the media, they use to reach the public, we accept the evidence and the demarcation of issues bering upon public question. You think you’re a free agent choosing, but you’re not. You’re only choosing from the things that the invisible government (which are his words, not mine, it’s not my tinfoil hat words, it’s his) that the invisible government has decided you can vote on.”
Scott Hambrick: Just prior to this, a couple pages earlier, he says, “that the demos cannot make decisions and cannot create ideas.” They can only vote on things given to them, there has to be somebody with a will to power and an intellect (those are my words, he doesn’t say that), but that’s what he alludes to that has to come up with the ideas. Because the voters cannot vote on what question to put forward because if they did, what questions to put forward would they be voting on and where would those come from? Somewhere there has to be someone or some group of people that pose the problems put in front of us in referenda and in the ballots. I’ve never really thought about that, it’s plain as day and it’s a brilliant insight. “The voters cannot create new ideas,” and we need new ideas from time-to-time, and somebody has to come up with it and since we get stuff on a ballot, that (to me) those two ideas- that we can’t create ideas, and that I actually see ballots that have ideas on them that I get to approve or disapprove absolutely and one hundred percent- proves that there is this level of government that he’s talking about that I don’t have access to.
Karl Schudt: Right. So, the book is a manual on how to do that: it’s how to be one of them.
Scott Hambrick: Right.
Karl Schudt: For your personal profit or he’ll say “for progress” and “for the good of the smooth functioning of society.” But it’s manipulation all the way down: from the top down. Boy, that really bugs me.
Scott Hambrick: Well, it might bug you, what’s not true though?
Karl Schudt: Dotty Lee talks about this. Dorothy Sayers talks about this in The Lost Tools Of Learning as she surveys this sort of thing, and it’s easy to find. You find people who don’t really think. I’ve seen “man on the street” interviews where they’ll read some politicians policy and attach it to the name of the guy from the other party. And the people will oppose it just because it’s not their team: showing that there’s absolutely no thought going on. Dorothy Sayers says somewhere we’ve made this happen. In other words, it’s not necessarily the case that you have a populous that can’t think and has to be spoon fed everything. We’ve made it happen because we don’t ever ask them to think and we’re expecting them not to think.
Scott Hambrick: Well, I said (just a couple of shows ago) that I found voting oppressive because I didn’t understand the bond election and roads and bridges and all these things and that’s what he’s saying here on page 38. That “it would produce nothing but confusion” if they had to understand all that stuff. So we have “voluntarily agreed,” these are his words, “we have voluntarily agreed to let an invisible got sift the data and high spot the outstanding issue so that our field of choice shall be narrowed to practical proportions.”
Karl Schudt: When did you “voluntarily agree?”
Scott Hambrick: Well, okay, right. I tell you what, if you walk into the booth and you vote and you cast a ballot- that’s an agreement.
Karl Schudt: I guess so, on the one hand I want to throw this book across the room which is a good sign for me that it’s an interesting, worthwhile book. I didn’t actually throw it across the room but I did put it down pretty hard.
Scott Hambrick: You didn’t wipe your butt with it, though.
Karl Schudt: No, I didn’t do that. But it’s a book that points to something real that you can’t look away and say, “he’s wrong,” this is a fact of human relations, this is how we do it. Most people do not think very much, most people are led. Somebody’s doing the leading. So, all the words about self-government- you wonder- how true are they?
Scott Hambrick: You know they are, absolutely, not true at all. How about that? He proposes a better government system on page 39. It might be better to have, instead of propaganda and special pleading: “committees of wise men who would choose our rulers, dictate our conduct, private and public and decide upon the best types of clothes for us to wear and the best kinds of food for us to eat. But we’ve chosen the opposite method: that of open competition to achieve the society has considered to permit free competition to be organized by leadership of propaganda.”
Karl Schudt: That’s not quite true, what he says there, “we have chosen the opposite method: that of open competition.” It’s not open. It’s not open. If it were open there’s that quote “democracy is the worst system of government except for all the others.”
Scott Hambrick: Right.
Karl Schudt: The benefit of it, if there’s a benefit is that it’s open and messy and that you don’t have huge smooshings of power together.
Scott Hambrick: “Smooshings of power.”
Karl Schudt: Yeah, smooshings of power. Because it should be a mess, it should be that somebody could stand up in the square and say, “wait a minute, the emperor has no clothes.” It’s supposed to be bomb-throwing, at least rhetorical bomb-throwing.
Scott Hambrick: If it’s supposed to be rhetorical bomb-throwing, the best bomb-throw wins. Here’s Bernays and his team and we’re back to where we started.
Karl Schudt: Except propaganda, I think, is sneaky.
Scott Hambrick: It’s just rhetoric, it’s just sophistry but it’s organized on a higher level and has a deeper understanding than is commonly thought or commonly understood. I can’t believe I’m defending Bernays! What has happened?
Karl Schudt: I don’t know. Are you even Scott Hambrick? What is your name?
Scott Hambrick: Oh what is happening?
Karl Schudt: So, let’s say, we’re going to have a discussion about who the best jazz trumpet player is. We’re going to argue over it and we’re going to try to persuade each other and you’re going to pick Chet Baker, probably.
Scott Hambrick: Maybe.
Karl Schudt: And I’m going to argue for Lee Morgan.
Scott Hambrick: Lee Morgan, okay.
Karl Schudt: So, we have an argument and we bring up their records and we talk about their careers. That to me is open and honest How about for months before the debate I have surreptitiously had “Sidewinder” playing wherever you go, and have inspirational stories about Lee Morgan (who, I believe, by the way, was shot by his wife on stage?).
Scott Hambrick: Wow, I did not know this.
Karl Schudt: …because he had cheated on her (I think that’s the story). I have all sorts of “puff” pieces on Lee Morgan: you’re encountering him wherever you go. So, now when I argue with you, I’ve already “won the field.” That’s propaganda.
Scott Hambrick: Right.
Karl Schudt: Propaganda is not,” let me persuade you based on the merits.” Propaganda is “let me show you a bunch of famous people who like Lee Morgan, and have his face pop up all over the place and then use your involuntary urges against you.”
Scott Hambrick: It’s pure sophistry rhetoric. If you and I argue about the merits and demerits of Chet Baker: it’s just dialectic but let’s talk about how he wants to do this. I hear what you’re saying, Karl, and I clearly think that there are lines that when they are crossed that trickery and manipulation and unethical behaviour is taking place.
Karl Schudt: You know what this reminds me of? Do you know the Genealogy Of Morality? When Neitzsche talks about his vision of the “Bronze Age” people, the old-time, ancient Greeks vs the sneaky, slave morality that’s going to get around them by propaganda. You’d rather it be two dudes getting together and fighting over Lee Morgan and Chet Baker, like men, and instead “nope, we’re not going to do that, we’re not going to come at it sideways.” It’s distasteful to me. Now it being distasteful to me is not the same as it being morally wrong and should be: it’s just something Carl doesn’t like. We probably have to do better than that.
Scott Hambrick: Well, okay, we have problems of free will we’re gonna have to talk about here in a minute. Let’s talk about what he thinks the mechanisms whereby propaganda works are. He says that “ideas and choices are winnowed by unforeseen forces in people.” They have to be. For example, (here’s Hambrick’s example) you go to your local store, you go down the soap/detergent isle, you cannot buy detergent that isn’t there. Somebody decided that these are the detergents that go in stores in your area and you had nothing to do with that. And he would say that there are “gate keepers,” “taste-makers,” “media,” “political parties,” and “other voluntary associations of people that help make those decisions,” and he’s more interested in changing the minds of those people in organizations so that downstream you buy the soap that he wants you to buy. He doesn’t use the word “taste-maker,” but he does use the word “influencer” which I thought was cool or interesting. And he was really interested (and you can see this thing on page 41) and you can find this thing all over the place: it’s at archive.org, you know whatever. He says that there are all these different kinds of people and they naturally group together and he says it’s extremely difficult to realize how many and diverse are these cleavages in our society; they may be social, political, political, economical, racial, religious, or ethical with hundreds of subdivisions of each. He goes on to name all kinds of associations that he found in the world almanac, in the American newspaper annual directory of 1928 he found over 22,000 periodicals of publications in North America and so on. He was very interested in identifying these influential groups, these influencers, these people who self-identify with these certain groups so he would know how to reach them and (frankly) manipulate them. He says says that “ideas are sifted and opinions are stereotyped,” right on down to maybe your neighborhood bridge club or the thousands of women that unconsciously belong to a sorority which follows fashion set by a single society leader,” (who’s married to Conway and goes and meets with the president). So it’s like, hmm. So, he says it is the purpose of this book to explain that mechanism which controls the public mind and to tell how it is manipulated by the “special pleader, who seeks to create public acceptance for a particular idea or commodity.”
Karl Schudt: I think all that’s true.
Scott Hambrick: It is true.
Karl Schudt: It’s obviously true and it’s there to be used.
Scott Hambrick: Is he bad for pointing it out? Are there some truths we should just put a rock on top of and not look at?
Karl Schudt: “Is he bad for pointing it out?” Okay, so, as usual, I’m going to go back to Plato. Socrates knows how to use rhetoric, somewhere in this book Bernays calls it “the weapon propaganda,” which is a nice turn of phrase. Rhetoric the “weapon propaganda,” it’s a weapon. Knowing how to use the weapon, I suppose, is morally neutral but who are you going to shoot with it. But, he’ll wave his hands at ethics here and say, “of course we want to do this in the service of truth” but before that his example was creating a fashion for velvet.
Scott Hambrick: I know.
Karl Schudt: So, of course this is what we’re gonna do. You know, we were joking a little bit this week if we hired Edward Bernays to work for Online Great Books, and we wanted a propaganda campaign to make OGB the cool thing. How would we do it? We’d have to go into these associations, we’d have to find some taste leaders and influencers, we’d have to get Kim Kardashian to read The Republic on her instagram page and give “shout out to OGB!” or whatever she does. I don’t follow her so I don’t know what her instagram’s like. What else would we do? Are there even sewing clubs anymore?
Scott Hambrick: I don’t know.
Karl Schudt: I don’t know, we’d need the person. In fact we do some of this, we do have some social media pages, we’re trying to make it the cool thing to do, we want you to come join us, we really do. Where is it a line too far, or where is it no good, or am I just being squeamish, and this is what everyone does and I should get over it?
Scott Hambrick: Well, it is what everybody does and don’t know if you should get over it. I tell you: that as somebody that runs a business and has run several businesses and would like people to voluntarily use our businesses and pay our prices, I’ve never wanted people that didn’t actually want our service. I never wanted anybody that was luke-warm about it to use the service. I mean it causes problems for everyone and so I never wanted to be very manipulative. If it’s about buying ivory soap: the stakes are pretty low. They buy a package of ivory soap, they decide they don’t like it and they don’t buy it again and they’re out a $1.82 or whatever it costs. But I don’t think manipulating people to get them to do something they wouldn’t do if they had fully used their free-will is a good idea for anybody. But one selling or the one buying. And, I also don’t like (there’s an assumption underlying this whole book) that people should be manipulated, that you should do it. As one of these leaders you have a responsibility to do it- that’s kind of underlying the whole thing. I don’t know that that’s true. If everybody does this is it even possible to have a good overarching outcome for society if everybody does this?
Karl Schudt: Well, back up a little bit. What’s a good outcome for society? The way that he judges whether one of these propaganda campaigns is ethical or not- he talks somewhere about “for the smooth functioning of society,” and I’m just- why does it need to function smoothly? What is smooth mean? It’s like efficiency. Why does it have to run well and what does it mean to run well? It’s the same question: to Socrates to Gorgias “Do you teach justice as well?” Gorgias is too embarrassed to say that he doesn’t and he says, “well, of course I do.”
Scott Hambrick: Right.
Karl Schudt: But that’s a big question- “what is society?,” “what’s a human being?,” “what’s legitimate for us to do?,” “what isn’t?” And if you don’t have that propaganda it can very easily be a bad tool.
Scott Hambrick: And his ethics and metaphysics is not healthy. I don’t think.
Karl Schudt: I don’t think so, I think it’s Freudian, and I’m not a huge fan.
Scott Hambrick: Of course it’s Freudian! Page 48- we’re gonna get to his ethics here, guys, in a little bit- “Propaganda is the executive arm of the invisible government.”
Karl Schudt: Oh, tinfoil hat.
Scott Hambrick: That’s not a tinfoil hat, that’s what he says, that’s his words!
Karl Schudt: I know but it’s like…
Scott Hambrick: his widow approved the publication of this. This is what he said in 1928.
Karl Schudt: I know but invisible got is a conspiracy theory.
Scott Hambrick: He worked for the government.
Karl Schudt: It’s like a whistle word.
Scott Hambrick: But he worked for it thought, they say right here he worked for the CPI (the Committee of Public Information for the United States government) and then essentially he ended up working with the C.I.A. to help overthrow the elected government of Guatemala. This guy has the employee badge, he can swipe his card and get into the invisible government building.
Karl Schudt: Where is the invisible…Is the building itself invisible?
Scott Hambrick: I can’t tell you. It’s like the “Hall of Justice” from the Justice League cartoons. Right below that this is really interesting to me (and I actually believe this is true). The first time this idea came to me, it was through Albert J. Nock’s book Memoirs Of A Superfluous Man. Universal literacy has given him the propaganda. Rubber stamps inked with advertising slogans, with editorials, with published scientific data, with the trivialities of the tabloids, the platitudes of history but quite innocent of original thought. Nock said, “that before universal literacy, there were common people who only had common sense and were unreachable by sophistry.” You would have had to go farm to farm to poison the minds of the common craftsman and with universal literacy people learned phonics and could sound out the words but they couldn’t do what we liked (was reading and criticism, and all that) and they became targets for this. Here, right here on page 48, Bernays about fifteen years after Nock said the same thing. And if these guys, if they had known each other, might have killed each other: Nock and this guy.
Karl Schudt: And twenty years later Dorothy Sayers writes a book about everybody’s got words at the mercy at the words being used against them which was the whole reason to study the liberal arts. It’s not enough to be able to read. You have to be able to judge.
Scott Hambrick: Karl, I think we have to be honest and say and show where he describes that the word propaganda came from the Catholic Church where, in1627, they instituted what they call the “college propaganda” as founded by a Pope Urban VIII, for the education of missionary priests. And propaganda at that time didn’t mean then what it means now. They were propagating ideas and propagating religious and political beliefs but it was probably more about training and education for those people than manipulation from behind the scenes like it kind of means today.
Karl Schudt: And that’s another difficult thing for me reading this book.
Scott Hambrick: The world’s been around for a while, that’s the point.
Karl Schudt: It becomes a bad word because of, probably, WWII.
Scott Hambrick: I think- WWI.
Karl Schudt: In public consciousness- probably- WWII because it becomes attached to (who is the propaganda guy for the nazis?).
Scott Hambrick: Goebbels.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, tell the big lie, tell it big enough, kind of the perfection of these methods. But then you start learning how this stuff is done and then you think, “well, it’s always been done,” and “Are there things that I like that are actually propaganda?”
Scott Hambrick: Sure.
Karl Schudt: My distaste with it spreads like the Aeneid is propaganda. It’s a word used by the Church. Well, is that bad that a church spreads it’s beliefs? I suppose there’s good ways and bad ways to do it, it depends how you do it. Which is what I’m going back to, you have to have a vigorous notion of justice to have a defense against this. Socrates says in the apology, “so persuasively did my opponent speak that I am almost convinced that I’m guilty.” It’s a heck of tool: propaganda.
Scott Hambrick: And you have to know what truth is, I think, for it to be used properly. On page 65, he gives a little case study, a PR account so he calls it a “Public Relations Counsel,” is what we would call a PR Specialist or a Public Relations Officer or a spin doctor. He says that “they may find that the orphanage is having trouble raising monies,” and the PR Counsel might find that public ideas about how orphanages should be run have changed. And maybe they need to reorganize the housing situation for the orphans to align with the public mood that thinks they have to be housed in cottages instead of open-bay dormitories, for example. So, if they reorganize their housing situation and then publicize that then perhaps the donations would go back up. Well, I thought that was super interesting because what does the public know about how to manage that?
Karl Schudt: Nothing
Scott Hambrick: Nothing, absolutely nothing. They just have some notions that it would be really nice if the orphans were four to a cottage instead of twenty-five to a dormitory. I have no idea what’s best but that’s a horrible way to manage a business, in my opinion, or an orphanage which is way more high-stakes than any business. I think it’s a way of testing a truth claim. That’s what he’s doing. We have two potential truth-claims: the best way to house orphans is in an open-bay dormitory situation like you see in old Dickens’ movies (old movies based on Dickens’ novels). Or put them in cottages, with four to a house (for example maybe), with a kitchenette, and one resident advisor, let’s say. What is the best way to do that? Bernays doesn’t even care. What does the public want to see? That’s the way we’re going to manage our orphans. That’s what he says. The way the public wants to see it done is the way we’re going to do it: that’s how he tests what’s best. Am I wrong? He doesn’t care about what’s best for those kids.
Karl Schudt: When he talks about progress, there’s a presumption that somebody knows what’s best- that somebody knows what’s best and in this case you have to do what the public will accept. So, if you look right in the middle of 65, this is a thing that I underlined, he has to make sure that what he has to offer the public is something that which the pblc accepts or can be brought to accept and somewhere else he says, “you dare not go against public opinion.” If you have an idea for the way orphanages should be run, you need to do it first: you need to get people, you need to make a movie where the plucky heroine is abused in the open-bay model, and the hero comes along says, “oh, get Elizabeth Taylor to play this role.”
Scott Hambrick: I was thinking it was going to be Julia Roberts, kinda like, “Erin Brokovich” movie.
Karl Schudt: I was thinking Elizabeth Taylor form “Jane Eyre.” And you put her in the cottage and she thrives and then tear jerking great ending, everybody watches the movie, they’ve been moved. The movie is an argument but they don’t know it.
Scott Hambrick: The “Erin Brokovich” movie is an argument.
Karl Schudt: Right but it’s consumed as entertainment. It’s really a documentary and it’s an argumentative documentary, but no it’s entertaining and Julia Roberts is pretty and sassy and you don’t know that you’ve been manipulated.
Scott Hambrick: On another podcast I griped about the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” being propaganda for fractional reserve banking. And the guy said, “Oh Hambrick, you’ve never seen the movie, you’ve got the plot, the setting, everything wrong.” I didn’t. I’m right about that. He saw the thing on top which was everything that was set up to make you have sympathy for the people that ran the bank. I don’t know how long that movie is, if it’s 90 minutes long, 87 minutes of it was set up so that you would be sympathetic to them when their mismanagement of the bank was exposed. He saw the thing on top but he didn’t see the other thing. “Oh, you don’t even know what you’re talking about.” Stupid.
Karl Schudt: I think you guys ought to read this book, you folks ought to read this book, you’re going to see it everywhere.
Scott Hambrick: Everywhere.
Karl Schudt: You’re going to see it everywhere. You’re being manipulated all the time, every day, the moment you open your eyes to the moment you go to bed, and maybe even after that.
Scott Hambrick: Never stops.
Karl Schudt: I went to Walgreen’s today, because we have a touch of the plague here in my house, and I had to pick up some medicine for a little boy, and I sent Scott a picture. The freezer doors at walgreens have now been replaced with television screens. Flat panel screens that display the product, bouncing around, happily, enticing you. You walk by and our visual acuities triggered by movement and the thing moves just enough so you turn your head and you look at it and you don’t even know what you’re doing and you see “oh, Heineken, that sounds good. Maybe I’ll pick some up.”
Scott Hambrick: And what an arms race. All the companies that have put their frozen goods in that store developed appealing packaging, tstd the lettering and the fonts so they could be legible so they could drive their sales and then somebody else got in front of that even and blocked the glass doors with other messages on video screens and you can’t even see the packaging of the things behind. It just never stops, the propaganda never stops.
Karl Schudt: Other examples: you go to the gas station, I don’t know if this has made it to Tulsa. When you go to the gas station and put your credit card in the damn- (pardon my language)- the little television screen pops up and starts bombarding you with all sorts of things sometimes it’s sports propaganda for the NFL, while I’m pumping gas. You can’t get away from it. You go to the airport and you have a news channel on every single place. Why are there tvs in an airport?
Scott Hambrick: I don’t know.
Karl Schudt: Why do there have to be tvs in an airport? It’s just assumed and they’re all on and they’re all on the same channel.
Scott Hambrick: I bet if we dug in- dear listener, put your tinfoil hat on with me- I bet if we dig in, we’ll find out that someone donated the televisions to the airport authority because they want them there. Why do they want them there?
Karl Schudt: The music you listen to- Allan Boom talked about this in The Closing of the American Mind that (this was 1995) he’s noticing everybody has headphones on all the time. You’re pumping stuff into your brain all the time and it’s not neutral, everybodys trying to get a piece of you. I read a book a while back, I’ve been trying to find it, I think I checked it out from the library (it was a children’s book, I read children’s books, young-adult dystopian fiction because it’s the best) and it was about getting a wireless implant in your brain and all the kids had them and the plot was that there was a homeschool girl who came off the farm and she got hers late. Everyone else got them at a very young age and she didn’t deal with it very well, (and the plot’s not happy). But you know you have this thing in your head and as you’re walking around (and Neal Stephenson has this same thing, I think, in some of his novels) you’re walking around and the advertisements are tailoring themselves to you. So right now you go browsing around on the internet and you go to (I don’t want to name any of these sites) but you go to some of these popular social media sites, they’ve already got the ads there for you, personalized to you. They’ve been tracking you the whole time, and you think “I want to be online all the time,” and what that would be like is everywhere you go the ads would be following you, you would never have a moment free from the propaganda.
Scott Hambrick: Never.
Karl Schudt: Which we almost don’t have now. And Propaganda is a thing, it’s a legitimate tool, I get that but I think it’s gone, boy it’s hard to have room to think. So, common decency, if there were such a thing, ought to say there is some kind of limit to what you can do (it seems to me).
Scott Hambrick: He, on page 69, he lays out his ethics (if he has any). First of all, (I’ll read these first two lines) if we accept public relations as a profession we must also expect it to have ideals and ethics. One: the ideal of the profession is a pragmatic one. Well, let’s talk about that. We talk about people being pragmatic all the time but it’s actually a philosophical school of thought, right, pragmatism. And I think he’s speaking about it in the strict sense, in the philosophical sense. I think he’s a twentieth century pragmatic which is a weird kind of western, American utilitarianism. Like ideas are good based on how well they work.
Karl Schudt: yes.
Scott Hambrick: Is that how you’d say it, Karl?
Karl Schudt: It’s not my cup of tea.
Scott Hambrick: I am no pragmatic. So we have this very popular usage like, “oh, he’s a very pragmatic person” which kind of means he’s practical. “He’s a very practical, he’s a pragmatic person.” well, I think Bernays here, we can’t dig him up and ask him (he’s dead) but I think he’s actually a pragmatist like a philosophical pragmatism where he thinks that the ideas are true. You can test whether an idea is true based on how well it works.
Karl Schudt: Right.
Scott Hambrick: Right? So, utilitarianism would say an idea is more true than other ideas based on how helpful it is.
Karl Schudt: How many happiness units it generates.
Scott Hambrick: So, if vaccines kill a thousand kids a year but we don’t have chicken pox and more (and chickenpox used to kill ten thousand) we’re up nine thousand, we’re good to go. That’s a very utilitarian calculus that you would make about that. Utilitarianism has some sort of calculus they do that makes more sense to me than the pragmatic one. How do you know if something works in a pragmatic sense. James, right? We’ll have to read some pragmatists here at some point. So that’s that. He thinks it’s a pragmatic one. The profession, the goodness, (I’ll put words in his mouth here) the goodness, the profession is proven by how well the darn profession gets its job done. Now the job is evil, I think. So at the bottom of page 69 he says that “the profession of public relations counsel is developing for itself an ethical code which compares favorably with that governing the illegal and medical professions.” Well, he’s poisoning the well. Tell me what the code is and I’ll decide if it compares favorably. Se he’s already put himself in juxtaposition with these other trusted professions: the legal, the medical profession, he’s screwing with us. “In part, this code is forced upon the public relations counsel by the very conditions of his work.” this is like pragmatic. We have to be ethical just because of the conditions of the work.
Karl Schudt: The job itself makes you ethical.
Scott Hambrick: The job itself makes you ethical. You couldn’t even do it if you were unethical.
Karl Schudt: That’s convenient.
Scott Hambrick: I’m having a hard time being generous. “While recognizing just as the lawyer does that everyone has the right to present his case in his best light he nevertheless refuses a client who he believes to be dishonest, a product which he believes to be fraudulent, or a cause which he believes to be anti-social.”
Karl Schudt: I want a list.
Scott Hambrick: I want a list.
Karl Schudt: Which clients did he refuse? Because he’s promoting smoking to women by tying it in to voting rights. He’s working it promotes WWI, which why were we there- because Bernays?
Scott Hambrick: A lot of it (I have a WWII story to tell in a minute). And then he says one reason for this, (he’s talking about his code of ethics) is that even though a special pleader (he’s talking about the public relations council) even though a special pleader, he is not dissociated from the client in the public’s mind. He doesn’t really have any problem with fraud or dishonesty or anti-social behavior. Well, if he does he chose to not mention that, he says, “the reason we don’t want to do that we just don’t want to be associated with that kind of client in the public’s mind. He’s a sketchy dude, man, and if he’s not sketchy he didn’t let us know that in this book.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, go the last paragraph on 70, “he should be candid in his dealings. It must be repeated that his business is not to fool or hoodwink the public.” Meanwhile the whole book tells you how to hoodwink the public. “If he were to get such a reputation, his usefulness in the profession would be at an end.”
Scott Hambrick: But the aim’s pragmatic.
Karl Schudt: Did you note the little dodge there, it’s not “fooling” or “hoodwinking” that’s bad, it’s “getting a reputation” for fooling or hoodwinking. Plato again, go back to Republic II, guy gives ring- which is better- to be thought to be just while being completely unjust? Being thought to be honest seems to be what’s important here, not actually being honest. Call me an idealist or something, all my hackles are, I have hackles and they’re raised at the moment. I wanna pull up 84. I think there is some peculiarities of the modern worlds that make propaganda more necessary.
Scott Hambrick: Wait a minute: necessary?
Karl Schudt: Yeah, well, let’s read. Five lines down- it’s about mass production- “mass production is profitable only if it’s rhythm can be maintained that is if it can count to sell its product in steady or increasing quantity. The result is that while under the handi-craft of a small unit system of production, (I think there’s a little glitch in the line here) when you had small farmers or small creaters a century ago, demand created the supply. Today supply must actively seek to create its corresponding demand.” How do you create demand?
Scott Hambrick: Propaganda.
Karl Schudt: Propaganda. How much do you need? I’ve been thinking, I have a tablet from 2012, an old google tablet, all of a sudden it runs real slow, it doesn’t do anything anymore, it’s pretty much a brick. Why?
Scott Hambrick: They need to sell a new tablet.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, you’ve got to create the demand.
Scott Hambrick: He talks in here about food and he says that food is not a very good market to be in because people eat until they’re full and it’s really hard to create excess demand in the food market. People might buy shoes and wear lots of different shoes but food spoils and it’s kind of a limit on that. But I thought, well, this is almost a hundred years ago, we’ve got an obesity epidemic. They have sold more food to us. They found a way to sell us more food than we needed to eat and it’s strictly a consumption driven movement. They don’t want you to be healthier, they just want you to buy more of their product and I also thought they probably even want more of it to spoil (just like your tablet). What is xyz food seller, what is their motivation to make sure to have a maximum shelf life? If they want it to sell more they have to walk a razor’s edge between having enough shelf-life and having too much. The whole thing’s busted.
Karl Schudt: It might be that propaganda is connected to- intrinsically connected to- a consumption economy. I don’t know what the solution is for that.
Scott Hambrick: For him, ideas that he talks about, there’s a competition for ideas and that the ideas are consumed even the ideas (for him) are consumer goods.
Karl Schudt: If you look at these social media networks (that I’m not going to name) they have infinite scroll, you never get to the end. They’re designed that way- infinite scroll, you just keep going, keep going, keep going- you sit there at the thing forever. Well, there the product is you, actually, but in order to make that keep happening you have to manipulate people. If I’m going to the market to buy feed for my cows, I only need so much (i don’t have any cows) I go back and I feed them. I can only sote so much I can only have so much. There’s only so much money they can get out of me to feed those cattle. So, we need to shift the game and to have a product- that you can’t have too much of.
Scott Hambrick: You need to have a different kind of economy, Karl. If everybody’s agrarian, what do you sell them? Flour, corn meal, sweet feed, hay.
Karl Schudt: Horseshoes.
Scott Hambrick: Horseshoes, a few durable goods, you have to uproot them from that kind of existence so you can move more product to them. You want them to be a rootless cosmopolitan person, you want them to move from Indiana to New York City.
Karl Schudt: One might think that. So one supports the other, i don’t know which came first.
Scott Hambrick: For a guy like Bernays, his clients are at the highest levels of everything, and when I say highest levels, I mean that they are the organizations they have the most potential number of clients like the CPI he worked with on WWI. It’s the whole nation is their concern like taste-making and influencing the entire nation is their concern. So if there are people, if there are organizations that are operating at that level and they have their Bernays of the day working then there’s almost no behavior that they wouldn’t be willing to influence in order to get the outcome that they’re tying for. So if that means you’re willing to leave the family farm and you’re willing to leave your family to go to Chicago but consumption goes up and they can show that when people do that then they’re for it. If you have a larger family and more of your income goes to feeding your family and not more consumer goods they might not be for that.
Karl Schudt: And if we’re judging rightness or wrongness based on the level of consumption well, it ain’t care of the soul. It’s so contrary, for me, this is a very good book that I want to through across the room (it is a very good book) I think you ought to read it and try to be sympathetic to him, see if you can, but it raises so many issues for me. What is the best sort of person? Let’s back up. Is the best sort of person a consumer? Or is the best sort of person self-sufficient? Does the best sort of person needs to have new fashion every year? I think I agree with Walker Percy on this, “fashion is evidence of original sin.” Things that used to be good are no longer good.
Scott Hambrick: I was reading Oswald Spengler and said, “conformance with fashion is evidence of conformity with culture.”
Karl Schudt: It takes two to tango so somebody’s making the new fashions. From the top, down, somebody’s changing the fashion so they can sell more stuff but from the bottom it shows some sort of lack in the person who all of a sudden realizes that bell bottoms are no good and I need to get skinny jeans. “No, your bell-bottoms are fine, they’re fine, keep wearing them.” So, if you have what I would call better people, they’re less susceptible to propaganda to change the fashions to make them buy more stuff.
Scott Hambrick: Insofar as we are manipulable by propaganda, we lack free will.
Karl Schudt: Right. I don’t think he thinks we have free will.
Scott Hambrick: I don’t think he thinks we have free will either. I wonder how susceptible he thought he was to propaganda?
Karl Schudt: Not to keep bringing up Walker Percy, Walker Percy talks about this all the time, “the behaviorists who freely choose to manipulate subjects and test them as if they have no free will.” There’s always the subject that like somewhere in here he talks about the person who thinks that he thinks. It’s on page 75, this is 74. “A man may believe that he drives a motor car,” because (we should call them motorcars) “that he buys a motorcar after careful study of the technical features of all the makes on the market, he’s concluded that this is the best. He is most certainly fooling himself. He bought it perhaps because a friend who’s financial acumen he respects bought one last week or because his neighbors believe he would not be able to afford it or because of its colors or because of his college fraternity.” So he didn’t really choose the car, but for me the line that made me perk up was “he is almost certainly fooling himself.” That presumes that there is a self there to be fooled. You can’t fool something that doesn’t exist, you can’t fool a rationality that isn’t there. Either “the human is a rational agent who can make choices” and in this case did not really choose the way he thought he did or he’s not a “rational agent” and there’s no choice at all. I think, probably, Bernays is acting as if there’s no choice at all.
Scott Hambrick: This is where he’s Freudian, he follows up with this idea you’re talking about on page 75. He says this general principle that men are very largely actuated by motives which they conceal for themselves. So he says “fooled” earlier but then he says later that they have “motives that they concealed from themselves,” This is as true of mass as of individual psychology. “It is evident that the successful propagandist must understand the true motives and not be content to accept the reasons for which men give for what they do.” So he talks about them fooling themselves but then later on he says, “there are concealed motives that they’re not aware of.” Do you believe that?
Karl Schudt: Then the propagandist is then able to manipulate the concealed motives.
Scott Hambrick: Do you believe that?
Karl Schudt: Do I believe that there are concealed motives?
Scott Hambrick: Mmhm.
Karl Schudt: Yeah. Yes and no. There’s a lot of things that you do that are sub-rational and they only become rational only upon your reflection upon them. So I ate (my daughter cooks all the time, I have one daughter who cooks all the time. The only food she really likes is noodles, and so she has taken upon herself to cook noodles every day at lunch.) and I ate some of her noodles and she asked me today, “did you eat some of my garlic, spaghetti noodles?” All of a sudden I’m thinking, “yeah.” “Why did you do that?” And now I have to come up with reasons, “well, because I had a hard day and I deserved it and I chose them as a treat: they went well with my chili.” I’m coming up with reasons (after the fact) when really what happened was I was hungry, I opened up the door, I grabbed the food, I ate it. It was not extremely rational. There’s sub-rational motives, there’s things that we do that we don’t really think about but then we actually can think.
Scott Hambrick: Sure.
Karl Schudt: I’m trying to think what’s my reaction to Bernays? I don’t like that things he says that are true are true. I want them not to be true insofar as I can make that happen. I want people to think more.
Scott Hambrick: I think people need to read this book.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, they probably do. I think the perfect companion to this book is the lost tools of learning by Dorothy Sayers. Well, they both worked in the same field.
Scott Hambrick: She was in advertising. He has some insights that I think are really interesting outside of even the ideas of propaganda. The idea that he put forth about the demos not being able to think or create new ideas, I think that’s exactly right, it’s hiding in plain sight, I had never thought of that before. I thought that was interesting and I think that’s true and that’s going to change the way I think about a lot of things. Cool insight. Have you ever heard that? Have you ever thought that before?
Karl Schudt: About a group psychology being different than an individual?
Scott Hambrick: No. About that ideas don’t originate with the voting populous. Of course that’s true. We just vote on what’s put in front of us. They’ll run these focus group farces with the Delphi Method or whatever but there’s still a taste-maker, a thought leader, whatever, a think-tank. A think tank! Those are designed to create policy that then maybe we get to vote on and put in place.
Karl Schudt: So democracy is never really democracy: it’s always oligarchy.
Scott Hambrick: It can’t be! I have a young friend who says that all governments are an oligarchical, the selection methods of the oligarchs differ: that’s the only thing different. I think he’s right. So, I thought that that idea was interesting. Then he has some interesting ideas about (they start on page 100) about business where he says, “we have different kinds of competition.” You have a competition like- two plumbers in the same town compete against each other. You know, about that kind of competition. And then there are competitions between industries like the plumber might compete with a pipe-fitter, where they are adjacent to each other, and depending on what you want to do you may end up going with this kind of craftsman vs the other kind of craftsman. But then there’s this inter-industrial competition and this is the one that I think (particularly small business people) miss out on: the interindustrial competition. Oklahoma Natural Gas sells natural gas to me, and they want me to buy a lot of natural gas and the toastier I keep my house the less likely I am to need another sweater. So Oklahoma Gas is competing with the textile industry. And then the textile industry (the more fashionable they make their sweaters) the more likely women are to wear them to holiday parties the less likely people are to turn the heat up when company comes over for the holiday party. So these two, seemingly, unrelated industries are at a death match.
Karl Schudt: That’s an interesting idea.
Scott Hambrick: It’s a crucial insight that is kind of high level and I’ve actually thought about this because I know that people don’t have a lot of disposable income and when we talk about competing for the disposable income (people talk about that in the business world) but really every single resource they have at this point, every single resource a customer, a consumer, an individual has at this point is up for to be competed for. Now we have this social media stuff that competes (for not just your dollars) but your time. Time on app. How long did you spend on the continuous scroll?
Karl Schudt: You know what the answer is, the answer to that?
Scott Hambrick: What’ the answer?
Karl Schudt: Too long.
Scott Hambrick: Too long. But that inter-industrial competition exits and people that are successful know that and they play that game and they compete for every dollar you have. But now we have these products that (supposedly) don’t cost us anything but if it doesn’t cost you anything, you’re the product, you just don’t know it. They are competing for you, for that which is you. Twitter, facebook, instagram, Netflix all of those people are competing for you. They talk about eyeballs, they talk about views, they are talking about your attention. They are using your attention as a product, and I think you should use your attention for your own gratification: play checkers with your own damn kids.
Karl Schudt: Our competition for OGB is Netflix, for example. We would like to have more of you join us and do our thing. I sure think it’s better, we have such good discussions and a great seminar on Tuesday but it’s got to compete. I go to the gym where I work and (love these people) they’re always talking about the latest Netflix show. I don’t know, whatever.
Scott Hambrick: I’ll tell you what. If somebody doesn’t want to read, I don’t want them to read with us either. No hard feelings but I’m not here to manipulate people. I hope I make a good dialectical case for why we would do this. I hope I set an example that people find to be interesting and would like to emulate for some. I’ve got a lot of stuff that’s bad about me but I hope to show that normal people can read these books and I hope that by showing that example I guess we’re na influencer in that Bernaysian way. I hope we’re upfront about there’s nothing eceptive about it but we’re locked in that competition with Netflix. You know another giant competitor, Carl, that I think we have for reading (not Online Great Books) just reading in general- is youth sports. That kids don’t have time to read and the parents are spending so much time at the practice, at the swim meet driving them to the thing. They have very little time. I think youth sports is a huge competition to reading.
Karl Schudt: I think that’s probably true. I think that the benefits of it are probably oversold.
Scott Hambrick: What’s the benefit?
Karl Schudt: Of youth sports? Well, physical fitness, learning the value of teamwork.
Scott Hambrick: Yeah, I think that’s the thing that people want.
Karl Schudt: What I think would be a genuine benefit, which isn’t sold very much, is the glory of victory.
Scott Hambrick: But that means somebody loses, Carl, we can’t be having that.
Karl Schudt: I know. I know. We don’t do many sports here. You ought to be able to read. This is your time, when you’re a kid, when you’re a youth this is a time when you can sit there with a pile of books, and you can read ‘em. You can sit down with a pile of Narnia books and plow through them.
Scott Hambrick: Read all of them on Christmas break.
Karl Schudt: And nobody’s going to say, “go to work.” It’s a glorious time.
Scott Hambrick: I want to tell my WWII story. I think I may have told this before but I’m telling it again. My mom’s people are from up around Chelsea, Oklahoma. She had two great uncles who would have been WWII age, and neither one of them participated, and they hid those boys from it. They didn’t do the selective service thing, they probably draft dodged, I don’t know the whole story, but neither one of them did so much as merchant marine, I mean nothing. That always kind of bothered me. And my grandmother was like, “oh no, we wasn’t the…” And when the selective service guy came around they went out in the woods, they ain’t no kids here.” That always irritated me but my grandmother said, “we had crops to get in.” They were not interested in either France or Germany or Italy or North Africa, nothing. They had no interest whatsoever. A lot of people would have said they were poorly educated, I don’t think any of them went to school past (probably) eight grade. I’ve told the story about them reading Omega in the Bible and naming the last child “Omega” so they were thoughtful people.
Karl Schudt: Was the first child named “Alpha?”
Scott Hambrick: “Bula” But they were self-interested people who had their own set of priorities and they didn’t do team sports. They didn’t do it, they hadn’t done it since kindergarten. They didn’t see themselves as a part of team America or whatever the hell that is. The had cows to milk and crops to get in and they were not interested in fortress Europe, at all, and they didn’t go. Seems right.
Karl Schudt: It seems certainly something that you oughta think about. My wife and like to go to small town festivals (I’ve talked about this before).
Scott Hambrick: Went to the Horseradish Festival with you not too long ago.
Karl Schudt: We did and there was surprisingly little horseradish at the Horseradish festival (in Collinsville). So, if you’re listening, Collinsville- more horseradish.
Scott Hambrick: By the way, all the other cities in the states of the union, more horseradish.
Karl Schudt: Because Illinois, you should know, Illinois is the horseradish capital of the world. It’s not just known for the city of big shoulders, down by St. Louis there’s a whole bunch of horseradish, which is good. I’m happy about that but a lot of these towns still have their little town square from back when people used to have town squares. We don’t do it now, we have cars we drive from our house to our job and back to our house, and you don’t ever just walk around the town. There might be a fountain, there will probably be a war memorial. I want you to go look at it.
Scott Hambrick: There are increasingly more of them.
Karl Schudt: More war memorials?
Scott Hambrick: Yeah! The WWI one and the WWII one.
Karl Schudt: I mean Spanish-American war. Go find these people who died in your town in some military adventure, I don’t know. We went to “Sevierville” in Tennessee, and…
Scott Hambrick: And “Horribleston” in Texas.
Karl Schudt: This is Dolly Parton’s hometown. Did I say it right; Sevierville? I don’t know (Severeville) there’s a statue of Dolly there ( I have a picture of my kids with DP) and there’s a war memorial and there’s like a family name that shows up. They have WWI and the WWII on the same one and there’s like three people from the family (say they were the name “Smith,” I can’t remember names, I should remember the name. So the “Smith” family, it was a weird enough name that you knew it was the “Smith” family. There were three of them in WWI that died and then one from WWII that died, and then they had names from Vietnam and none of them.
Scott Hambrick: They’re done.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, they’re all done, they’re all dead.So they went from Tennessee to Europe. So if you’re gonna say that this stuff is “fine” alright but you have to imagine yourself talking to this family, in Eastern Tennessee and saying…
Scott Hambrick: “You’re making the world safe for democracy.”
Karl Schudt: …you’re boys are never going to come back. It’s a momentous thing but the reason people sign up is because of people like Edward Bernays.
Scott Hambrick: Hey and our friend Malachy, who I love very much, “the few, the proud, the Marines.”
Karl Schudt: Look, I’m not saying “don’t”, I’m saying “realize the magnitude of what you’re doing.”
Scott Hambrick: On page 119, listen guys, he says “it is not necessary for the politician to be the slave of the public’s group prejudices if he can learn how to mold the minds of the voters and conformity of his own ideas with public welfare and public service.” This, the guy that can declare war. Later on he says, “in actual fact, it can only be done by meeting the conditions of the public mind by creating circumstances which set up trains of thought by dramatizing personalities, by establishing contact with the group leaders who control the opinion of the public.” And that’s how you get people to enlist. The day that will live in infamy. You know what I would have done? Maybe i’m wrong, I would have said, “You all can fucking have Hawaii.”
Karl Schudt: It’s too far away.
Scott Hambrick: It’s too far away! We’re going to spend how many trillion dollars and how many tens of thousands of lives so that Tenia, Saipan, Guam, Terawatt, Guadalcanal, Okinawa, Hawaii, what? There were nine people on Terrawat before that happened. Let ‘em have it.
Karl Schudt: When you drive through Illinois, you can drive through,(there’s a town)…
Scott Hambrick: Somebody’s gonna say, “Actually, there were eleven people….” I’m gonna get that email, it’s going to be great.
Karl Schudt: You can direct those to Scott@…
Scott Hambrick: That’s right…@onlinegreatbooks.com.
Karl Schudt: Don’t direct it to me. There’s a town in Illinois, we call it Marseilles because that’s how we pronounce French names in Illinois.
Scott Hambrick: I like that.
Karl Schudt: In illinois, I drive on a road called “Le Grange,” we have the Des Plaines River, this is how we do french. We’re going to pronounce all the letters: none of this fancy French pronunciation. So, Marseilles is a little river town in North Central Illinois and they have the memorial for Middle East Conflicts and you can get off and you can drive to it. It’s almost on the canal route so you can drive a little further south and go to one of the Illinois State Parks, you can camp there and watch the canals go through there in the middle of the night. You drive into this place and there’s usually a couple of guys on motorcycles pulling in and veterans pulling in and you go to this memorial and the thing that they do (you can read the names and then you can go to these little computer terminals they there) and you can look up the people. You can see where they’re from, you can see who they were.
Scott Hambrick: That’s good optics. I like it.
Karl Schudt: Read propaganda and then when you’re driving cross-country on one of your cross-country trips (which I also think you ought to do, dear listener) get a sense of what the country looks like. You can stop in Marseilles.
Scott Hambrick: Yeah, but don’t come to OK, we’re full.
Karl Schudt: Well, this is driving through.
Scott Hambrick: Yeah but still.
Karl Schudt: Stop in Marseilles, go to the Dairy Queen, get a hot dog, go to that Middle East conflicts memorial and look up a few of the names. Maybe find your hometown, I think you can search by hometown so you can find if people from your hometown that went and died and maybe it’s a good war to be in but maybe it’s not but this is the power of propaganda.
Scott Hambrick: Those people are dead.
Karl Schudt: So, when Bernays’ calls it the “weapon propaganda” that’s what it is, it is a weapon and boy it’s gonna be used on you. I hope they’re using it well.
Scott Hambrick: He’s got some practical, step-by-step instructions on how to increase consumer demand for products, political campaigns, how to make effective political campaigns, how to put up a platform, you develop a budget, you raise money, he shows you step-by-step how to do those things. (I wrote my own platform, Carl, by the way.) He talks about how the women’s movement should use this, how the education movement should use this. Let’s be generous, Carl. What’s the name of the country (of Groucho Marx’ country) that’s at war with in Duck Soup? What’s the one in 1984? Oceania.
Karl Schudt: Eurasia has always been at war with Oceania.
Scott Hambrick: So let’s say we’re invaded legit by Oceania. You can say “we” as whoever you want it to be. It could be the ninth ward in New Orleans.
Karl Schudt: I’m going to think of this in terms of the Patrick Swayze movie “Red Dawn.”
Scott Hambrick: If you can prove this, however you prove it, they are legitimate threat to your life and the lives of your children. Would we want to have this book so what we could rouse the people to most effectively face and defeat this threat.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, probably.
SH: We’re 101 years overdue for a flu epidemic and another pandemic, ,I think it was 1918, I think we got one coming. Do we want to know all these things to avert all the deaths that come with pandemic?
Karl Schudt: Look, all it means in Latin (it’s a future past participle) it’s things that are to be put forward. Did you call me a nerd?
Scott Hambrick: Maybe.
Karl Schudt: Propaganda, it’s like the name “Amanda,” “Amanda’s” the future passive participle of the verb “to love” so it means “she who is to be loved.”
Scott Hambrick: I knew an Amanda once. She doesn’t like me anymore.
Karl Schudt: Because she is to be loved.
Scott Hambrick: We’ll talk about her in another show.
Karl Schudt: So, you need to be able to know how to put forth a message. It’s a tool. When Bernays’ calls it the “weapon propaganda,” alright, what are some other weapons? Your rifle, your bomb, penicillin: these are weapons against things, they are morally neutral in and of themselves. You better use it in the right case (this is why all these questions) it’s the Republic for me over and over again. What is “justice?”
Scott Hambrick: Yeah. What’s truth, what is good? He talks about the news media on page 120, I think we need to point it out, he conceded and he already knows. By the way, remember, you probably remember (dear listener) from your history class they talked about “yellow journalism” and how the Herst Papers whipped the public up for support of the Spanish-American war, we know now that the main (We even know that slogan now, it’s over 100 years later) that the Main was probably not blown up by the Spanish. But he says that the newspaper man looks to the politician for news. The politician wholesales, the politician is the wholesaler of news. That’s where they get their news, the newspaper man. He says, “being independent everyday of the year, and for year after year upon certain politicians for news, the newspaper reporters are obliged to work in harmony with their new sources.” Of course they are, of course they are, that’s consequences! I wrote down here, “What exactly is the news?” What does it even mean?
Karl Schudt: Something new. There’s going to be an agenda behind it so the thing that perked me up was, I think, his wonderful words about the New York Times on163.
Scott Hambrick: I couldn’t believe it! Do you think it was true?
Karl Schudt: No, I know it wasn’t true! So I have a page open right now, this is page 163, and the New York Times has taken an outstanding example: news is printed because of it’s news value.” That’s undefined and for no other reason the Times’ editors determined with complete independence what is and what is not news. They broke no censorship, they are not influenced by any external pressure, norwayed by any values of expediency or opportunism. This was written in 1928, the New York Times had Walter Duranty working for them who was the Moscow correspondent from 1922-1934, who reported favorably on Joseph Stalin who ignored the famine in Ukraine. In 1929 he got an exclusive interview with Joseph Stalin, told not one bit of truth, on the Soviet Union, got the Pulitzer prize. Why, why did the New York Times publish his stuff? Did they have sympathies with the Soviet Union? That’s why it was news fit to print. So, he’s got this one example that he points out of something that is neutral, at the same time he was writing this book, I can point to an example of where they were not. I’m thinking of takeaways from this book, the takeaways from this book, there are methods: there are methods that you might use well, in service of something legitimate but you better know what justice is or have some good ideas to know what’s legitimately good. I posted on instagram, I called it “Defense Against The Dark Arts.” (It’s a Harry Potter term. All the cool teachers taught Defense Against the Dark Arts.) You need to know what’s being used against you. Maybe it’s being used to get you to floss and so it’s not really being used against you.
Scott Hambrick: Except Oral B wants you to buy more floss than you need. There’s no end to it, Carl.
Karl Schudt: You ought to know that you’re being manipulated and then maybe you can be less so, and maybe build some room for rationality and actually thinking of the people.
Scott Hambrick: I think there is. You said in the beginning of the thing, if everybody knows about propaganda, would it still work. If everybody read this book would it still work. On page 122 he says “It will be objected, of course, that propaganda will fed itself as its mechanism becomes obvious to the public. My opinion is that it will not. The only propaganda which will tend to weaken itself, as the world becomes more sophisticated and intelligent, is propaganda that is untrue or unsocial.” I think that he’s been proven to be wrong about this. I think he’s lying about the untrue or unsocial, (I’m going to go ahead and say that) untre and unsocial propaganda. The methods work. There’s nothing about the methods that make them not work if it’s not true. There’s no requirement for anything to be true for manipulating a taste-maker, buying advertising, using music to imprint jingles and slogans in your mind. There’s nothing about truth that makes those things not work. There’s nothing about unsociability that would negate and of the techniques: that is not true, that is just not true. Maybe he thinks that would be the case but: no. I think we know now that that’s not so.
Karl Schudt: His view of human nature of the group, that;s on 71, “the group has mental characteristics distinct from those of the individual. Is motivated by impulses and emotions which cannot be explained on the basis of individual psychology. The group is not rational.” If the group is not rational then they’re not judging truth.
Scott Hambrick: Is there such a thing as a group? People always talk about society this, society that and I’ve always contended that there’s no such thing. It’s a useful shorthand, we have to talk about groups of people, but you really can’t find them or point at them.
Karl Schudt: I don’t know: they act like groups. Emerson said, “tell me your sect and I know your creed. I know your opinion.” I can know all your arguments before you say them if I know what team you’re on.
Scott Hambrick: this is a matter of statistics, It’s a heuristic, it’s a way of thinking about things, but there are outliers, I mean I don’t want to be that guy “I know a really tall woman.” I don’t want to be that woman. “What do you mean,’men are taller than women?’ I know a lady who’s 6’3.” But groups are a really useful way for him to think about certain marketing avatars (is what they would call them nowadays) that can be reached and persuaded by certain arguments or certain methods. But it’s just really Heuristic, there is really no SouthWest Chicago, harp owning group. Even if there were nine of you.
Karl Schudt: I think there’s more to it than that, I think there are clubs and cliques and groups that act as if they’re one thing.
Scott Hambrick: If you legit pay dues to the AFLCIO, that’s a thing, but soccer moms. There was a lot of talk, probably during the second Bush campaign as the “soccer moms” as a voting block. That’s not true. They can easily expect ladies who drive certain kind of vehicles and have 2.3 kids to be a certain way. But that group doesn’t really exist, that’s not a thing.
Karl Schudt: When I was a kid, I read a book called Foundation by Isaac Asimov. What the book war but was psycho-history, using the advanced math of Harry Seldon, you could predict the future. The plot was the collapse of the galactic empire and there was going to be 100,000 years of darkness or it might just be 500. And Seldon builds this foundation t go off to a planet and they are going to know certain crucial elements of the future and Seldon’s little avatar will pop out every now and then and tell them how to fix problems. The gist of the book was (and of course this wouldn’t work) but it works because the galaxy’s so big that when you get a group of people big enough that you can determine particular qualities of them and you can predict their behavior. A group of ten soccer moms is not a group but you can micro-target this is a nation of 370 million people you can target an awfully large group that is homogenous and then find the propaganda that works for that particular group. And because we’re all social media remoras we’re just waiting for that propaganda (and they’ll find us) because the social media knows tells them who we are and our buying habits, and where we live, and what links we click, and they’ll find us. In other words, they’re making it capable of doing something like Asimovf was talking about.
Scott Hambrick: Avoid being in groups.
Karl Schudt: I think propaganda’s probably easier to do now.
Scott Hambrick: I think it is too. It would have been very difficult to do before universal literacy. You get that, now they can all read Walter Duranty lying to them in the New York Times, or the Hearst Papers lying about Cuba in the 1880s and 90s. Now you don’t have to wait for the early paper or the evening paper to arrive, it’s in your hand all the time, and the average American (I’ve read) spends about 2.5 hrs a day on their mobile device. Almost nobody spent that much time reading periodicals or watching the news before that. I hate that group stuff, Carl. I took one of these tests about the big five personality traits: agreeableness- I’m in the zeroith percentile.
Karl Schudt: I don’t think I was that high, I was higher than zero.
Scott Hambrick: I’m in the 98th percentile for conscientiousness.
Karl Schudt: I scored really high in openness. Can you believe that I was like 98 on openness.
Scott Hambrick: I’m on 83rd which is most people wouldn’t have expected that. Assertiveness: 98th. So, if you have somebody that’s that disagreeable and in the 98th percentile for assertiveness, it’s a recipe for disaster. Politeness- 4th percentile. So I don’t like that group stuff, screw that, can’t do it. He talks about art needing propaganda, Carl, and my mind went directly to you. He says that “propaganda plays a part in pointing out what is and is not beautiful.” Good lord, do you think that’s true. Do you think that if we could find Tarzan, the man of nature and we put him in front of Greek statue- you know that Roman bronze “The Boxer?” I love that thing so much. If you put a man of nature- a Tarzan; an uncultured, an unculterated…Uncultured makes people think that if they fart in public, I mean somebody that’s not socialized and isn’t programmed by a television and everything. Do you think a man of nature could stand in front of that and see the hurt and the wonderfulness in that sculpture?
Karl Schudt: yes, I do. Now, put him in front of Jackson Pollock. That whole episode with the banana taped to the wall that sold for 120,000 dollars.
Scott Hambrick: Do you know what I think happened?
Karl Schudt: That the whole thing was a scam?
Scott Hambrick: I think that the whole thing was a scam including the guy that ate it. And I think the whole thing about the Banksy was shredded. I mean that whole thing was a scam. Worked- made us talk about it on our show.
Karl Schudt: If you have to have somebody tell you something is good that’s a big read flag. You’re being manipulated if you can’t look at a piece of art and say “that’s good.” Now there might be some distinctions right. My mother-in-law loves Thomas Kinkade.
Scott Hambrick: Yeah, why not?
Karl Schudt: She also loves really sweet wine. You have to be sugar forward on the wine and she’ll like it.
Scott Hambrick: “Sugar Forward” that’s my stripper name. On the red stage is “Sugar Forward.”
Karl Schudt: I’m not going to argue with her about art but I have some disagreements on that. I think Thomas Kinkaid’s not so great.
Scott Hambrick: But what’s it for though? I hear ya. If it makes your house cozy.
Karl Schudt: That’s fine but all she’s doing is buying a twenty dollar print and putting it in a frame. She’s not spending 120,000 dollars on something that some art critic or the art industrial complex has decided will be valuable this year. Which has no objective value at all. You look at things: a child could’ve drawn it, there’s no artistry to it. The only value is that the critic says it has value.
Scott Hambrick: I hate all aesthetic critics: art critics, movie critics, or architecture critics. I think discussion and explication that whatever it is what we do, clearly, I think that has some value. And I’ll listen to other people do the same thing like I listen to partially examined life and some other things but I don’t want to hear anybody’s aesthetic opinion about whatever. I just don’t care. It couldn’t be less relevant to me. You know what I hate? I’ll talk to somebody and they’ll say, “have you watched xyz?” My answer is always “no.” And they say, “you should watch this it’s really well done.” What does that even mean,”well done” it doesn’t mean anything. You mean they didn’t shoot it on a super 8 camera and you can’t see the mike on the top of the frame? What do you mean it’s “well done?” Stupid. Page 157- Walker Percy died a little bit when I read this. He extra died and then Shelby Foote was extra sadder- “The treasures of beauty in a museum need to be interpreted to the public and this requires a propagandist.” Guys, this requires no respect for us.
Karl Schudt: Well they probably don’t think the that you have a rational mind or probably a will or an aesthetic sense until they tell you. It’s right here, it’s clear as day. You don’t know that the thing is any good. Somebody has to tell you that it’s good.
Scott Hambrick: He’s hiding in plain sight guys. He told you right there, here’s another one he told us right there on page 159- “Propaganda is customizing the people to change and progress,” we need to be told over and over and over again that change is good. He says is right there. And then of course I wrote “towards what.”
Karl Schudt: Towards what the “invisible government” wants you to have, and I’m not being conspiracy theory, this is what Bernays said. Quote “invisible government”.
Scott Hambrick: And he says on page 163- I’m trying to get through my notes ‘cause all my notes are excellent. I should publish all my notes, they’re better than the book (no, maybe they’re not)- he says “the PR Counsel creates some of the day’s events.” What? “They create the days events.”
Karl Schudt: And if he doesn’t pay enough attention to an actual event, it’s not an event.
Scott Hambrick: We know that, they say, “oh, that’s a non-event.” It’s a lot of the things that he talks about. You know one of the things about the Great Books (I always say this, when I do guest appearances on other shows) is that we end up having vocab and ideas that we all have, or most of us have, that came from these books, whether we know it or not. I always give the Iliad examples: Helena’s the face that launched a thousand ships, and Christopher Marlowe wrote that about the Iliad, we know that. We know who Achilles is whether you read the Iliad or not, we know about Hectoring, I always give those examples. We know about non-events, we know about influencers, like the ideas out of this book (we know about a lot of them). This book is enormously influential. I don’t have a problem with the ideas (as much), I have big problems with the ethics, I have big problems with his epistemological and metaphysical underpinnings, I think he doesn’t know what’s right, I think he doesn’t know how we know things, I think he doesn’t know how to act properly, in plain language. But I do think he found the secret decoder ring for getting people to act in the way that he would like them to act.
Karl Schudt: Yeah, whether the book caused it or it is just describing it and this is the way the world works and you better know about it, I think you better know about it, you’re living in the matrix.
Scott Hambrick: And it’s been around forever.
Karl Schudt: Do you wanna know?
Scott Hambrick: Maybe not.
Karl Schudt: I do.
Scott Hambrick: Make you miserable. Can I get an “amen?”
Karl Schudt: I don’t know. We’re going to have legalized, recreational marijuana on January 1st and I’m not going to partake. I had this discussion with a friend, at the gym. “Are you going to?” “No.” “Have you ever?” “No.” “Why not?” because I want to have a clear perception of reality. “Well, what if reality sucks?” I don’t care, it’s real.
Scott Hambrick: I might agree with that. I’m not interested in soporistics. I like my stimulants, Carl, I cannot tell a lie, I like my caffeine, quite a bit, my nicotine. There’s Edward Bernays 1928 book Propaganda anything else to say about Ed?
Karl Schudt: Well, next time you pull up the Netflix website, keep it mind or don’t pull up the Netflix webpage.
Scott Hambrick: Tinfoil hat time: Netflix isn’t making any money. How long can you not make any money. I was talking to our dear friend Matt Reynolds, about this on the Barbell Logic podcast, and he says “It’s just amazing to me that they had the foresight to see this and do that. Netflix had the foresight to create that.” I was like, “Matt, it wasn’t foresight. They knew precisely what they were doing, they created the thing. They didn’t anticipate that it would trend and get in front of it, they created a thing because this book is their family lore. This is their business, this is the family business like in the English tradition; the Smith family- they were into blacksmithing. The Cooper family- they made barrels. This is the propaganda family.
Karl Schudt: The Hambricks built…Brick ham?
Scott Hambrick: From what I understand, I don’t know if this is true, you have a Hamlet of a little town…Somebody that managed a toll bridge next to a little town.
Karl Schudt: So, they were trolls.
Scott Hambrick: That’s exactly right..low in agreeability, that’s exactly right.
Karl Schudt: I think that’s my favorite part of the whole podcast today.
Scott Hambrick: What do you want to read next, Carl?
Karl Schudt: It’s getting on towards…
Scott Hambrick: “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere I go.”
Karl Schudt: yeah, I want to read everything.
Scott Hambrick: I do too. No one is emailing us any suggestions and maybe that’s fine because I have nothing to ignore.
Karl Schudt: Brooke says Iron John.
Scott Hambrick: Brooke Albidstricker?
Karl Schudt: No, Brooke from Online Great Books, Brook Schaff, I think?
Scott Hambrick: I have read Iron John.
Karl Schudt: I have not.
Scott Hambrick: Robert Bly’s book, Iron John, it’s a book about mythology and they used to (in masculine culture). We could read Iron John, it could be alright.
Karl Schudt: The other suggestion is because we’re getting to Christmas it would be A Christmas Carol but I’m afraid you’re going to do the “It’s A Wonderful Life” treatment to A Christmas Carol.
Scott Hambrick: Probably. Wouldn’t that be fun?
Karl Schudt: It would be fun. So, we could do that. There’s all sorts of things to do.
Scott Hambrick: Is this good pod when we do this?
Karl Schudt: If it’s not Brad will chop it off, right?
Scott Hambrick: I think it’s good pod. Do you want to do A Christmas Carol?
Karl Schudt: Sure, let’s do A Christmas Carol. But you have to try not to hate it.
Scott Hambrick: Oh, I’ll try not to hate it.
Karl Schudt: ‘Cause Dickens really is good, but it also might be propaganda, and you’re gonna come in and say, “Scrooge was right! Tiny Tim deserved to die!”
Scott Hambrick: The little cripple.
Karl Schudt: “He should die soon and quit taking up the surplus populations food.” It’s so good though. My favorite version of theatre is the Muppet version of A Christmas Carol, which Michael Cain played Scrooge and Kermit the Frog plays Bob Crachet and Miss Piggy plays Mrs. Crachet, and Rizzo the rat…no, no, no, Gonzo plays Charles Dickens.
Scott Hambrick: What is Gonzo? Is he a weasel?
Karl Schudt: No, but I think he’s a chicken but Gonzo says, “I’m Charles Dickens,” and Rizzo the rat says, “No, you’re not.” “Yes, I am.” And then rizzo says, “Charles Dickens was a giant of literature, a genius.” And Gonzo says, “thank you.”
Scott Hambrick: Ridiculous. I just looked at our schedule, and if the next show is about that, it will come out on January the 2nd.
Karl Schudt: Is that too late?
Scott Hambrick: Yeah, probably so.
Karl Schudt: I like our American trend that we’re doing, I like some of these American books that haven’t been read very much. Recently, I want to do Ben Franklin, I thought Thomas Paine might be fun, Barnaby The Scrivener- Melville.
Scott Hambrick: Uh, which one you want?
Karl Schudt: You want to do Bartleby? Let’s do Bartleby.
Scott Hambrick: Ok, Bartleby…
Karl Schudt: …The Scrivener.
Scott Hambrick: By Herman Melville. Yeah, that’ll be great in our series here about maybe propaganda, I want to read Marshall McCluen’s The Medium Is The Message, at some point fairly soon as well.
Karl Schudt: And more about propaganda and Walter Duranty: I can’t pronounce his name: Solzenitzen.
Scott Hambrick: Oh gosh, so huge.
Karl Schudt: Well, we’ll have to pick a chunk.
Scott Hambrick: I’m game. Well, there is another Online Great Books podcast, I hope you guys enjoyed it. I hope we didn’t wear our tinfoil hats too much. Here’s you some propaganda: people call things that are patently true “conspiracy theories.” Now there are some conspiracy theories about all kinds of things from flat earth to the moon not being a satellite (there’s all kinds of wackadoo stuff here). Anyone that says any talk about Bernays is a conspiracy theory is probably not right. The guy puts it all right there. Go read it for yourself.
Karl Schudt: Bernays says it, It’s not us.
Scott Hambrick: Go look at his resume and see what jobs he had, and then you’ll at least know what the toolbox he used in those roles was, and then you can look at the outcomes and then you can try to figure out how honest and beautiful those outcomes were.
Karl Schudt: Well, that’s another podcast.
Scott Hambrick: The human is broken. Hey guys, thanks for listening, go to onlinegreatbooks.com/ogbpodcast and you can sign up for our VIP waiting list and give us a review somewhere: google play, iheart radio (of course if they’re listening in here, they don’t care), tune in radio, we’re everywhere good pod can be found. Also, send a link to the show to one of your gullible friends, you know, one of your friends that sees a commercial for a tv dinner and then gets hungry. Send this to one of those friends and maybe we can get ‘em to unplug a little bit.
Karl Schudt: One last thought: (I apologize) read this book if you are still the sort of person who watches the Super Bowl and watches it for the commercials, read this book first.
Scott Hambrick: Thank you for listening.
Karl Schudt: Thanks.
Scott Hambrick: Were you glad that we read that one, Karl?
Karl Schudt: Oh, I hate that book.