The profound simplicity of Revel’s nuts and bolts account of totalitarianism’s Cold War advance, far from being obsolete, actually sheds light on a defining feature of today’s progressive ascension: the perverting of the free press into a propaganda ministry.
Revel’s trenchancy is proven in the fact that the mechanics of Soviet cultural infiltration he identified may now be seen at work again, this time undermining the West not from without, but from within. The war Revel described thirty years ago has progressed to its natural final stage: the West, having weakened before communist propaganda even as the communist nations themselves were crumbling, has now taken to propagandizing itself into rejecting its victorious heritage in favor of the “ideal” of complete state control. Marxist disinformation is now homegrown.
First, a look at the mechanism Revel isolated. Paradoxically, the totalitarian world’s great advantage in its cultural assault was the openness of the democracies themselves. Specifically, our free press became the communists’ best weapon, as it gave them a strategic advantage: the communist nations, being closed to Western observers, were able to impoverish, starve, and execute their populations at will, with almost no direct scrutiny until much later, whereas in the West, every government action was questioned and critiqued as it happened. The practical result was to shield totalitarian atrocities with a real-time information blackout, so that the state’s official propaganda was all that the outside world was permitted to hear, initially. Meanwhile, Western society was continually wriggling under its own microscope, its imperfections fully exposed.
This exposure disparity fed very nicely into the mythology of communism as a grand ideal, by contrast with the rickety, flawed political machinery of the West. Everyone saw freedom’s warts, blunders, and impurities; from the totalitarian world, there were only declarations of purity and superiority, supported by apologetics from Western intellectuals, and mitigated only by vague, unsubstantiated rumors of secret police, repression of political opponents, and other implausible-sounding evils.
This real-time information gap, as Revel explains, was the key to tyranny’s ideological success. For when the ugly truths of communism did, at last, leak out, they inevitably came “too late,” once the potential public effects of immediate knowledge — horror, outrage, disillusionment — had already been diluted by time. That is, the West received the worst of the news once it had already become mere “history,” thus dulling its emotional impact.
It is not so much the poor or slanted reportage on anything that a comes from the right that has always concerned me, it is the total absence of any reporting on the negative aspects of the left. This amalgamation of errors called an “immigration reform bill” is a perfect example.
Last night, what was it that blared over the newswires, even on Fox?
Why it was the incredible, amazing, super-fantastic deficit reducing effects of the bill according to NBC News:
In a boost for proponents of comprehensive immigration reform, a new report from the Congressional Budget Office estimates that the immigration bill currently being debated in the Senate would increase the U.S. population by 10.4 million and would decrease federal budget deficits by $197 billion between 2014 and 2023.
The much-anticipated report indicates that enacting the legislation would create new federal outlays of about $262 billion in the first decade but would increase revenues – largely from new income and payroll taxes – by $459 billion.
It also estimates that about 8 million undocumented immigrants would initially gain legal status under the bill’s provisions.
While the CBO does not typically provide estimates beyond the first decade of enactment, the report tackled estimates for the time period of 2024-2033, estimating that the federal budget deficits would decrease by an additional $700 billion over that time. By 2033, the net increase to the U.S. population as a result of the bill’s enactment would be about 16 million, CBO says.
The positive estimates are a boon for proponents of the reform effort, who argue that immigration is an economic imperative for the country as well as a moral and political one.
So how did they manage this amazing feat?
Well, you have to go to a source that isn’t interested in hiding the tricks of their “progressive” idols:
As with Obamacare, the Gang structured its bill to make it “score” artificially well from a budget perspective. They did this by delaying the newly legalized immigrants’ eligibility for most federal welfare benefits for ten years, which takes those benefits outside of the ten-year window that is scored by the CBO. But that cosmetic shift did little to conceal the plan’s baleful effects. Here are the main points of the CBO analysis:
The CBO confirms that the bill provides for a vast influx of new, legal immigration. The Senate Budget Committee says:
CBO projects 16 million new immigrants will be added by 2033 on top of the current law projected flow of 22 million and that 8 million illegal immigrants will be granted permanent status – for a total of 46 million legal immigrants, including a doubling of guest workers to 1.6 million in a single year.
Contrary to the claims of the bill’s sponsors, this influx will be overwhelmingly low-skilled. The CBO says:
[T]he new workers would be less skilled and have lower wages, on average, than the labor force under current law.
The result is that unemployment will increase, and wages will be driven down, for America’s existing blue collar work force:
Taking into account all of those flows of new immigrants, CBO and JCT expect that a greater number of immigrants with lower skills than with higher skills would be added to the workforce, slightly pushing down the average wage for the labor force as a whole… However, CBO and JCT expect that currently unauthorized workers who would obtain legal status under S. 744 would see an increase in their average wages.
Terrific: the only ones who would gain would be those who came here illegally, while native born workers would suffer. The CBO report continues:
[T]he average wage would be lower than under current law over the first dozen years. … CBO estimates that S. 744 would cause the unemployment rate to increase slightly between 2014 and 2020.
Behind these rather antiseptic observations lies a human tragedy: falling wages and rising unemployment for the very segment of American society that has struggled the most in recent years. On top of that, the nation’s welfare system will be severely strained. While newly-legalized immigrants will not immediately be eligible for federal welfare benefits, that does not apply at the state and local levels. Those welfare systems will be overwhelmed with millions of new claimants–the cost to be borne, of course, by the taxpayers.
ABC, NBC, CBS and CNN skipped this that USA Today reported – but almost as an afterthought:
But the CBO also found that the border security components in the bill would reduce illegal immigration only by 25%.
Billions of dollars spent and we only reduce illegal immigration by 25%? This alone should condemn the bill to the paper shredders.
The reportage methodology of omission is nothing new. Walter Duranty of the New York Times reported flowery stories of Stalin’s successes in Russia while omitting the politically motivated mass starvation Stalin used to subdue the Ukraine.
The media in America are nothing but love-sick fanboys of collectivism and statism.