"In his forum called 'Designing a Media Relations Strategy To Overcome Concerns Surrounding Hydraulic Fracturing,' Range Resources communications director Matt Pitzarella explains how to 'overcome stakeholder concerns' surrounding fracking.
'We have several former psy ops folks that work for us at Range because they’re very comfortable in dealing with localized issues and local governments,' Pitzarella said. 'Really all they do is spend most of their time helping folks develop local ordinances and things like that. But very much having that understanding of psy ops in the Army and in the Middle East has applied very helpfully here for us in Pennsylvania.'
It was during Anadarko Petroleum's manager of external affairs, Matt Carmichael's, session on 'Understanding How Unconventional Oil & Gas Operators are Developing a Comprehensive Media Relations Strategy to Engage Stakeholders and Educate the Public' that he suggested his colleagues:
'Download the U.S. Army-slash-Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Manual, because we are dealing with an insurgency,' Carmichael said. 'There’s a lot of good lessons in there and coming from a military background, I found the insight in that extremely remarkable.'
To be clear on exactly what Carmichael meant when he said they're 'dealing with an insurgency' we obtained a copy of the FM 3-24 — the final edition of the 2006 Counterinsurgency manual provided to psy ops soldiers. We substituted the word government with corporation.
' ... insurgency has been a common approach used by the weak to combat the strong. At the beginning of a conflict, insurgents have the strategic initiative ... the insurgents generally initiate the war. They may strive to disguise their intentions, and the potential counter-insurgent will be at a great disadvantage until [corporate] leaders recognize that an insurgency exists and are able to determine its makeup and characteristics to facilitate a coordinated reaction.
While the [corporation] prepares to respond, the insurgent is gaining strength and creating increasing disruptions throughout the state. The existing [corporation] normally has an initial advantage in resources, but that edge is counterbalanced by the requirement to maintain order. The insurgent succeeds by sowing chaos and disorder anywhere; the [corporation] fails unless it maintains order everywhere.'..."
The treatment of captive populations as either adherents (consumers) or potential guerrillas is not limited to the "bad" corporations. Banks, newspapers, defense contractors and oil companies may have hired the first ex-military experts in disinformation, population control and psychological warfare, but they won't be the last. A permanent military devoted to endless warfare produces experts who generally leave service sometime before they die.
Doing business, even small business, requires mystification. Business is unfair. Always. Doing business means separating a person from the product of her labor, to her repeated disadvantage. Grocery chains, gas stations, restaurants, amusement companies, counseling practices, engineering firms - they all develop media relations departments once they pass a critical mass of wealth, market presence and accumulation.
Once a business is capable of moving the market, it reinforces this capability.
It begins to understand consumers - or, patients and clients - as potential traitors. As persons in need of loyalty and brand reinforcement.
This is, not incidentally, how the corporate press sees the rest of us as well. If you do not respond to their product as would a loyal consumer, you are treated as an insurgent, or potentially so. The larger portion of news output depends upon the treatment of the listener, viewer or reader as a person who might otherwise be hostile should the narrative fail
You, who are probably a producer of commodities or commoditized services, must act like a commodity yourself. As an item on shelf, dependable in its branding. That is the how the producers of news segments, ad campaigns and state propaganda understand you, us, the whole lot of competing captive populations. We are energy and wealth producing possessions with enough of a smattering of will to potentially resist, or to seek new conditions.
Considerable treasure and loot is budgeted towards getting us to "internalize" a consumptive form of obedience, to better prevent resistance which works.
You've learned about how Gandhi was a great man, no doubt. How his non-violence was like a kind of solar magic which enervated a nation. How India emerged from his spectral man-womb, perfectly formed from pure and noble protest, from the holy reception of British violence. That Gandhi gets taught in school. Gandhi the child fondler, the racist, the man who ordered his wife's death by refusing her medicine, the guy who nearly starved himself to death to stop Congress Party from giving rights to the Untouchables - he doesn't make it into the hagiographies, the history books, the school texts or the PBS retrospectives. The Real Gandhi makes Permissible Gandhi look like, um, propaganda*.
And like most of us who were fed this pig's swill of educational and moral self-betrayal, you might not even be aware of the thousands and tens of thousands of Indians who sabotaged train tracks, burned out British and local police stations, assassinated officers and engaged in what is now commonly referred to as hateful, evil, immoral "terrorism." They probably even vandalized park benches, broke windows and burned out collaborating businesses.
The real Gandhi, and the historical India are continuously elided, in favor of the non-violent Saint and his loyal millions of lightworking do-gooders.
"Gandhi-ji" good, actually hurting those with all the power and guns, bad. Bosses with smiles on their faces because the rube proles are waving placards and playing with poppets, good. Banks empty of customers because the lobby, designed to look like the interior of a temple, is on fire, bad.
Kind of like: Martin good, Malcolm bad.
Or: Obama cool and articulate, McKinney nappy haired craaaay-zee.
This "internalization" of self-defeating, action-limiting beliefs operates from within and without. Those people who fancy their selves as members of a resistance, but who have incorporated the over-class's obeisances, mental obstructions, consensus mentality and rule making hierarchies into their memories operate from within a movement, constantly (if most likely, unconsciously) reinforcing the imposition of the masters' rules and restrictions on conduct, reinforcing those pressures which are routinely applied from without. Those within a resistance, especially those most prone to propertarian convictions, will often attempt to assume ownership over the messaging, "optics" and moral fiber of that resistance, movement or protest. They will insist on decorum. They will demand a respect (a fetish, actually, but who's nitpicking?) for property and its sacral functions, its usefulness, its value. It is important to them that the correct owners of the resistance be established. That it have the right brand. They are branded by the corporate and educational cultures which generally tend to produce them, and their pursuit of brand awareness, brand placement and brand protection reflects these facts.
They do the work of the ruling class, of course.
They are not alone in performing this task.
Huffington, Yahoo, MSNBC, CNN, the networks and FOX have run daily pieces on the precipitous state of Iran's "nuclear ambitions" for the last week or so. We are being prepped for the possibility of one more expansion of the endless war to keep global, Western capitalism - managed from London, New York, Washington, Berlin, Paris and Rome - afloat atop a rising tide of manufactured Emergency and storyboarded crisis.
Emergency is the answer to insurgency. Crisis is the reaction to criticism.
This is now business as usual. Same as it ever was.
* - because Permissible Gandhi is fucking propaganda. Seriously, this fuck was a child fondling defender of forced chastity, female servitude, racial superiority and the hatefulgodsbedamned caste system. Also, it's no hard task to draw a line of causation from Gandhi to Nehru to Gandhi to nuclear India.