Artful Anecdotes
Report; Posted on: 2006-10-06 00:01:55

Artful anecdotes are an insidious propaganda technique attaching words, thoughts, or actions to fictitious characters who are then made to stand for the class or type of person targeted for disparagement and defamation in the propaganda campaign.

Archie Bunker

Former Vice President Albert Gore's favorite hate symbol, Archie Bunker, is a classic example. When Norman Lear decided to destroy the popular American image of European American blue-collar workers (faithful to their wives, work every day, and support their children), he created the fictitious Archie Bunker, using the character's fictitious words, thoughts, and actions to defame all European American blue-collar workers in a racist and classist way.

It worked so well that we were frequently treated to the spectacle of former Vice President Albert Gore mentioning Archie Bunker in public speeches as though Archie Bunker were a real person.

The irony surrounding the Archie Bunker hate caricature is that all of Archie Bunker's putative thoughts and personality traits sprang from the mentality and meanness of Norman Lear, not from the minds of blue-collar European American workers.

Norman Lear went on to use his ill-gotten gains from the marketing of "All In The Family" to found People for the American Way (PAW), now one of the tools used by anti-European Americans to degrade and silence European Americans.

Judge James W. Ware

Another recent example is provided by James W. Ware, federal district judge in San Jose, who delivered his own dishonest and racist tale for years to gullible audiences about a brother's murder during his youth by fictitious "whites" while the brother was riding on Ware's bicycle handlebars.

Judge Ware was exposed as a liar and hoaxer in 1998, and he was forced to withdraw his candidacy for an appellate federal court judgeship. He continues to serve as an federal district judge in San Jose, however. The murder of a sibling (a half-sister) of Judge Ware did occur during his youth, but the killer was an African American man.

Rigoberta Menchu

December 1998 saw a spectacular expose of a collection of artful anecdotes that were perpetrated on an unsuspecting world in 1983 by Rigoberta Menchu when she claimed, among many other falsehoods, that a major land dispute took place between European-descended landowners and indigenous Guatemalans, including her own family. Her lies masked the fact that it was a family conflict between her father (who owned 6,800 acres) and his in-laws, not a racial conflict at all.

[See "I, Rigoberta Menchu," 1983, by Rigoberta Menchu; and see "Rigoberta Menchu and the Story of All Poor Guatemalans," 1998, by David Stoll.]

Congressman Tom Lantos

In late 1990, to hustle the USA into Gulf War I, a scheme was hatched by Congressman Tom Lantos (D-San Mateo), a high profile PR firm, and the royal family of Kuwait to enlist the perjured testimony of the daughter of Kuwait's ambassador in connection with the great baby incubator scam.

Another congressman was also involved (John Porter), but he has denied all knowledge of the scam. Congressman Lantos has never denied his involvement or apologized to the American people. Here is how the Village Voice described the artful anecdote that pushed the US over the brink into its first war against Iraq with all the horrendous results for European American veterans who died or succumbed to illness and disability:

"So on October 10, 1990, the Congressional Human Rights Caucus held a hearing on Capitol Hill at which (the PR firm), in coordination with California Democrat Tom Lantos and Illinois Republican John Porter, introduced a 15-year-old Kuwaiti girl named Nayirah. (Purportedly to safeguard against Iraqi reprisals, Nayirah's full name was not disclosed.) Weeping and shaking, the girl described a horrifying scene in Kuwait City. 'I volunteered at the al-Addan hospital,' she testified. 'While I was there I saw the Iraqi soldiers coming into the hospital with guns and going into the room where 15 babies were in incubators. They took the babies out of the incubators, took the incubators, and left the babies on the cold floor to die.' Allegedly, 312 infants were removed.

"The tale got wide circulation, even winding up on the floor of the United Nations Security Council. Before Congress gave the green light to go to war, seven of the main pro-war senators brought up the baby-incubator allegations as a major component of their argument for passing the resolution to unleash the bombers. Ultimately, the motion for war passed by a narrow five-vote margin. Only later was it discovered that the testimony was untrue. (The PR firm) had failed to reveal that Nayirah was not only a member of the Kuwaiti royal family, but also that her father, Saud Nasir al-Sabah, was Kuwait's ambassador to the US....Of the seven other witnesses who stepped up to the podium that day, five had been prepped by (the PR firm) and had used false names. When human rights organizations investigated later, they could not find that Nayirah had any connection to the hospital. Amnesty International, among those originally duped, eventually issued an embarrassing retraction."


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