Disinformation: How It Works
By Brandon Smith
Clearing House" --
There was a time,
not too long ago (relatively speaking), that governments and the
groups of elites that controlled them did not find it necessary
to conscript themselves into wars of disinformation.
Propaganda was relatively straightforward. The lies were much
simpler. The control of information flow was easily directed.
Rules were enforced with the threat of property confiscation and
execution for anyone who strayed from the rigid socio-political
structure. Those who had theological, metaphysical or scientific
information outside of the conventional and scripted collective
world view were tortured and slaughtered. The elites kept the
information to themselves, and removed its remnants from
mainstream recognition, sometimes for centuries before it was
With the advent of anti-feudalism, and most importantly the
success of the American Revolution, elitists were no longer able
to dominate information with the edge of a blade or the barrel
of a gun. The establishment of Republics, with their philosophy
of open government and rule by the people, compelled
Aristocratic minorities to plot more subtle ways of obstructing
the truth and thus maintaining their hold over the world without
exposing themselves to retribution from the masses. Thus, the
complex art of disinformation was born.
The technique, the “magic” of the lie, was refined and
perfected. The mechanics of the human mind and the human soul
became an endless obsession for the establishment.
The goal was malicious, but socially radical; instead of
expending the impossible energy needed to dictate the very form
and existence of the truth, they would allow it to drift,
obscured in a fog of contrived data. They would wrap the truth
in a Gordian Knot of misdirection and fabrication so elaborate
that they felt certain the majority of people would surrender,
giving up long before they ever finished unraveling the deceit.
The goal was not to destroy the truth, but to hide it in plain
In modern times, and with carefully engineered methods, this
goal has for the most part been accomplished. However, these
methods also have inherent weaknesses. Lies are fragile. They
require constant attentiveness to keep them alive. The exposure
of a single truth can rip through an ocean of lies, evaporating
In this article, we will examine the methods used to fertilize
and promote the growth of disinformation, as well as how to
identify the roots of disinformation and effectively cut them,
starving out the entire system of fallacies once and for all.
Media Disinformation Methods
The mainstream media, once tasked with the job of investigating
government corruption and keeping elitists in line, has now
become nothing more than a public relations firm for corrupt
officials and their Globalist handlers. The days of the
legitimate “investigative reporter” are long gone (if they ever
existed at all), and journalism itself has deteriorated into a
rancid pool of so called “TV Editorialists” who treat their own
baseless opinions as supported fact.
The elitist co-opting of news has been going on in one form or
another since the invention of the printing press. However, the
first methods of media disinformation truly came to fruition
under the supervision of newspaper magnate William Randolph
Hearst, who believed the truth was “subjective” and open to his
Some of the main tactics used by the mainstream media to mislead
the masses are as follows:
Lie Big, Retract Quietly: Mainstream media
sources (especially newspapers) are notorious for reporting
flagrantly dishonest and unsupported news stories on the front
page, then quietly retracting those stories on the very back
page when they are caught. In this case, the point is to
railroad the lie into the collective consciousness. Once the lie
is finally exposed, it is already too late, and a large portion
of the population will not notice or care when the truth comes
Unconfirmed Or Controlled Sources As Fact:
Cable news venues often cite information from “unnamed” sources,
government sources that have an obvious bias or agenda, or
“expert” sources without providing an alternative “expert” view.
The information provided by these sources is usually backed by
nothing more than blind faith.
Calculated Omission: Otherwise known as “cherry
picking” data. One simple piece of information or root item of
truth can derail an entire disinfo news story, so instead of
trying to gloss over it, they simply pretend as if it doesn’t
exist. When the fact is omitted, the lie can appear entirely
rational. This tactic is also used extensively when
disinformation agents and crooked journalists engage in open
Distraction, And The Manufacture Of Relevance:
Sometimes the truth wells up into the public awareness
regardless of what the media does to bury it. When this occurs
their only recourse is to attempt to change the public’s focus
and thereby distract them from the truth they were so close to
grasping. The media accomplishes this by “over-reporting” on a
subject that has nothing to do with the more important issues at
hand. Ironically, the media can take an unimportant story, and
by reporting on it ad nauseum, cause many Americans to assume
that because the media won’t shut-up about it, it must be
Dishonest Debate Tactics: Sometimes, men who
actually are concerned with the average American’s pursuit of
honesty and legitimate fact-driven information break through and
appear on T.V. However, rarely are they allowed to share their
views or insights without having to fight through a wall of
carefully crafted deceit and propaganda. Because the media know
they will lose credibility if they do not allow guests with
opposing viewpoints every once in a while, they set up and
choreograph specialized T.V. debates in highly restrictive
environments which put the guest on the defensive, and make it
difficult for them to clearly convey their ideas or facts.
TV pundits are often trained in what are commonly called
“Alinsky Tactics.” Saul Alinsky was a moral relativist, and
champion of the lie as a tool for the “greater good”;
essentially, a modern day Machiavelli. His “Rules for Radicals”
were supposedly meant for grassroots activists who opposed the
establishment and emphasized the use of any means necessary to
defeat one’s political opposition. But is it truly possible to
defeat an establishment built on lies, by use of even more
elaborate lies, and by sacrificing one’s ethics? In reality, his
strategies are the perfect format for corrupt institutions and
governments to dissuade dissent from the masses. Today,
Alinsky’s rules are used more often by the establishment than by
Alinsky’s Strategy: Win At Any Cost, Even If You Have To Lie
Alinsky’s tactics have been adopted by governments and
disinformation specialists across the world, but they are most
visible in TV debate. While Alinsky sermonized about the need
for confrontation in society, his debate tactics are actually
designed to circumvent real and honest confrontation of opposing
ideas with slippery tricks and diversions. Alinsky’s tactics,
and their modern usage, can be summarized as follows:
1) Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy
thinks you have.
We see this tactic in many forms. For example, projecting your
own movement as mainstream, and your opponent’s as fringe.
Convincing your opponent that his fight is a futile one. Your
opposition may act differently, or even hesitate to act at all,
based on their perception of your power. How often have we heard
this line: “The government has predator drones. There is nothing
the people can do now…” This is a projection of exaggerated
invincibility designed to elicit apathy from the masses.
2) Never go outside the experience of your people, and
whenever possible, go outside of the experience of the enemy.
Don’t get drawn into a debate about a subject you do not know as
well as or better than your opposition. If possible, draw them
into such a situation instead. Go off on tangents. Look for ways
to increase insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty in your
opposition. This is commonly used against unwitting interviewees
on cable news shows whose positions are set up to be skewered.
The target is blind-sided by seemingly irrelevant arguments that
they are then forced to address. In television and radio, this
also serves to waste broadcast time to prevent the target from
expressing his own position.
3) Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.
The objective is to target the opponent’s credibility and
reputation by accusations of hypocrisy. If the tactician can
catch his opponent in even the smallest misstep, it creates an
opening for further attacks, and distracts away from the broader
4) Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.
“Ron Paul is a crackpot.” “Gold bugs are crazy.”
“Constitutionalists are fringe extremists.” Baseless ridicule is
almost impossible to counter because it is meant to be
irrational. It infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to
your advantage. It also works as a pressure point to force the
enemy into concessions.
5) A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.
The popularization of the term “Teabaggers” is a classic
example; it caught on by itself because people seem to think
it’s clever, and enjoy saying it. Keeping your talking points
simple and fun helps your side stay motivated, and helps your
tactics spread autonomously, without instruction or
6) A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.
See rule No. 5. Don’t become old news. If you keep your tactics
fresh, it’s easier to keep your people active. Not all
disinformation agents are paid. The “useful idiots” have to be
motivated by other means. Mainstream disinformation often
changes gear from one method to the next and then back again.
7) Keep the pressure on with different tactics and
actions, and utilize all events of the period for your purpose.
Keep trying new things to keep the opposition off balance. As
the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank
with something new. Never give the target a chance to rest,
regroup, recover or re-strategize. Take advantage of current
events and twist their implications to support your position.
Never let a good crisis go to waste.
8) The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.
This goes hand in hand with Rule No. 1. Perception is reality.
Allow your opposition to expend all of its energy in expectation
of an insurmountable scenario. The dire possibilities can easily
poison the mind and result in demoralization.
9) The major premise for tactics is the development of
operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the
The objective of this pressure is to force the opposition to
react and make the mistakes that are necessary for the ultimate
success of the campaign.
10) If you push a negative hard and deep enough, it will
break through into its counterside.
As grassroots activism tools, Alinsky tactics have historically
been used (for example, by labor movements or covert operations
specialists) to force the opposition to react with violence
against activists, which leads to popular sympathy for the
activists’ cause. Today, false (or co-opted) grassroots
movements and revolutions use this technique in debate as well
as in planned street actions and rebellions (look at Syria for a
11) The price of a successful attack is a constructive
Never let the enemy score points because you’re caught without a
solution to the problem. Today, this is often used offensively
against legitimate activists, such as the opponents of the
Federal Reserve. Complain that your opponent is merely “pointing
out the problems.” Demand that they offer not just “a solution”,
but THE solution. Obviously, no one person has “the” solution.
When he fails to produce the miracle you requested, dismiss his
entire argument and all the facts he has presented as pointless.
12) Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it and
Cut off the support network and isolate the target from
sympathy. The target’s supporters will expose themselves. Go
after individual people, not organizations or institutions.
People hurt faster than institutions.
The next time you view an MSM debate, watch the pundits
carefully, you will likely see many if not all of the strategies
above used on some unsuspecting individual attempting to tell
Internet Disinformation Methods
Internet trolls, also known as “paid posters” or “paid
bloggers,” are increasingly and openly being employed by private
corporations as well governments, often for marketing purposes
and for “public relations” (Obama is notorious for this
practice). Internet “trolling” is indeed a fast growing
Trolls use a wide variety of strategies, some of which are
unique to the internet, here are just a few:
1. Make outrageous comments designed to
distract or frustrate: An Alinsky tactic used to make people
emotional, although less effective because of the impersonal
nature of the Web.
2. Pose as a supporter of the truth, then make
comments that discredit the movement: We have seen this even on
our own forums — trolls pose as supporters of the Liberty
Movement, then post long, incoherent diatribes so as to appear
either racist or insane. The key to this tactic is to make
references to common Liberty Movement arguments while at the
same time babbling nonsense, so as to make those otherwise valid
arguments seem ludicrous by association. In extreme cases, these
“Trojan Horse Trolls” have been known to make posts which incite
violence — a technique obviously intended to solidify the false
assertions of the think tank propagandists like the SPLC, which
purports that Constitutionalists should be feared as potential
3. Dominate Discussions: Trolls often interject
themselves into productive Web discussions in order to throw
them off course and frustrate the people involved.
4. Prewritten Responses: Many trolls are
supplied with a list or database with pre-planned talking points
designed as generalized and deceptive responses to honest
arguments. When they post, their words feel strangely plastic
and well rehearsed.
5. False Association: This works hand in hand with item
No. 2, by invoking the stereotypes established by the “Trojan
Horse Troll.” For example: calling those against the Federal
Reserve “conspiracy theorists” or “lunatics”; deliberately
associating anti-globalist movements with racists and homegrown
terrorists, because of the inherent negative connotations; and
using false associations to provoke biases and dissuade people
from examining the evidence objectively.
6. False Moderation: Pretending to be the “voice of
reason” in an argument with obvious and defined sides in an
attempt to move people away from what is clearly true into a
“grey area” where the truth becomes “relative.”
7. Straw Man Arguments: A very common
technique. The troll will accuse his opposition of subscribing
to a certain point of view, even if he does not, and then
attacks that point of view. Or, the troll will put words in the
mouth of his opposition, and then rebut those specific words.
Sometimes, these strategies are used by average people with
serious personality issues. However, if you see someone using
these tactics often, or using many of them at the same time, you
may be dealing with a paid internet troll.
The best way to disarm disinformation agents is to know their
methods inside and out. This gives us the ability to point out
exactly what they are doing in detail the moment they try to do
it. Immediately exposing a disinformation tactic as it is being
used is highly destructive to the person utilizing it. It makes
them look foolish, dishonest and weak for even making the
attempt. Internet trolls most especially do not know how to
handle their methods being deconstructed right in front of their
eyes and usually fold and run from debate when it occurs.
The truth is precious. It is sad that there are so many in our
society who have lost respect for it; people who have traded in
their conscience and their soul for temporary financial comfort
while sacrificing the stability and balance of the rest of the
country in the process.
The human psyche breathes on the air of truth. Without it,
humanity cannot survive. Without it, the species will collapse,
starving from lack of intellectual and emotional sustenance.
Disinformation does not only threaten our insight into the
workings of our world; it makes us vulnerable to fear,
misunderstanding, and doubt: all things that lead to
destruction. It can drive good people to commit terrible
atrocities against others, or even against themselves. Without a
concerted and organized effort to defuse mass-produced lies, the
future will look bleak indeed.
You can contact Brandon Smith at:
This article was
originally published at Alt-Market
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