Lessons in Corporate Propaganda by Fortune Mag, Mitch Daniels & Chomsky

MUNCIE, Indiana BLOG – Once a year Fortune Magazine bestows a list of the top 50 leaders in the world. One of our Twitter fans sent us a link to the story showing Mitch Daniels with a 41st ranking. From the icon placed beside the link, we could tell they weren’t impressed. Normally, we wouldn’t bother, but since we just finished an article about moral leadership, thought it might be enlightening. Then we saw Taylor Swift was ranked as a top 50 leader, and we figured it was another piece of public relations propaganda put out by the corporatist machine.

Brief History on Mitch Daniels

We’ve written about Mitch Daniels plenty of times, most notably here, here and here. As a former governor of our state, he received plenty of recognition. Mitch Daniels is good friends with the Bush’s, one of the United States dynastic ruling families. None of the men are very bright, but apparently they have a good blood line and follow orders well. Mitch also got much of his reputation during the Reagan years as a “hatchet man”, for slashing government programs for “we the people” while showering the rich with lower taxes and deregulation of industry. The great economist Thomas Piketty attributes our current economic crisis on policies adopted by Reagan, so Mitch helped create our current problems three decades ago.  He also spent time at Eli Lilly, a place where good conservatives learn how to profit off preventable diseases. They’re not a wellness company, but a profiteer from the illnesses created by U.S. industrial sectors like food, energy and government.

Fortune didn’t discuss Mitch’s days as board member of Indiana Power & Light Company (IPALCO). Retirees at IPALCO have a special place in their hearts for conservatives like Mitch Daniels and Dan Coats. It took “incredible timing” and destruction of evidence to keep them both out of jail for selling their IPALCO stock (insider trading) before it was officially swapped for AES stock, and then lost all its inflated value. This 1990’s energy scam is literally known as, “Indiana’s Enron”.

What Kind of Leader is Mitch

Anyway, since we just discussed moral leadership last week, we thought we’d apply principles of moral leadership taught by Bass & Covey. We got really excited after reading Fortune’s opening statement of:

Governments are failing, companies are under siege, and age-old institutions are losing their grip. How do you lead in a time when everyone is a free agent, following his own star? We’ve found 50 living lessons.

It’s a captivating opening paragraph, but how were they going to connect this analysis of today’s tumultuous environment to a political hack like Mitch Daniels. We’ve never seen Mitch Daniels as navigating through chaos – more likely a creator of confusion or Captain Chaos.

Quality leaders use acceptance, tolerance, forgiveness, honesty and persuasion to lead people toward a vision. They aren’t admired for what they do, but how they accomplish it. When you consider how he got his current job at Purdue, Mitch appointed 80% of the Purdue board, who then hired him during an off campus ruse in a Chicago airport hotel. When reporters asked why the hiring wasn’t done on-campus, the board said it was more convenient to meet in a hotel. When asked for documents surrounding the interview and eventual hiring of Mitch Daniels, the board declined. We’re sure the reporters wanted the evidence of how the board reconciled the facts they hired the least qualified candidate for the job. As a public university, which accepts taxpayer dollars, we should have demanded the new governor fire him immediately, but since the new governor was Mike Pence, also a corrupted conservative in Indiana, it wasn’t going to happen.

You would think a “respectable trade magazine” like Fortune would have ruled him out based on the unethical way he was hired as president, or the immoral way he transacts business, but it must have slipped thru their thorough “vetting process”.

It’s obvious that Fortune and Time Mags are both part of the same corporate media like our newspapers in Indiana owned by Gannett. We suspect the other ones play by the same rules which keeps them from holding each other accountable.

Americans Are Fed Propaganda by Corporate Owned Media

We just finished listening to one of the greatest intellectuals of our time, Noam Chomsky. This MIT professor is a genius on many topics, but you rarely see him on television, or discussed on public radio, especially in major media-zines like Fortune. Why? Because he tells the truth.

Please take time to watch his video:

Americans aren’t told the truth – the media tells you a general narrative. We are not to tell you the truth which guides us along evolutionary awakenings leading toward a progressive society – our goal is to feed you what you want to hear and sell stuff for corporations.

It’s an enabling process, we don’t challenge you to become better, so you’ll demand better, we tell consumers exactly what they want to hear. Look at the Gannett owned StarPress in East Central Indiana, they don’t inform readers, they brand the criminals because you can’t offend them. They report about gossip, but never discuss the truth. They tailor their message to the 5th grade reading level because educated people leave the state for more progressive communities.

If you look at our paper from the outside world, our branded message is Muncie is full of criminals and people should stay away. When you consider we are a college town, it reinforces why students and professors want to stay on campus – exactly the opposite of what residents/business owners want them to do.

Fortune Magazine Brands the Myth of Capitalism

For Fortune Magazine, they create the myth of business, or narrate stories about successful CEO’s and companies. If you’re interested in climbing the corporate ladder, read successful magazines like Fortune, and follow the brave leaders like Mitch Daniels, and you too, can become a success. Or, better yet, buy his book and learn how he did it. Do you think he’s going to tell you the truth? Do you think he’ll explain how he scammed IPALCO workers while he was a board member? Of course not, it’s 100% pure propaganda, just like the history he professes we should follow.

Listen to what Noam says about the media:

The leading student of business propaganda, Australian social scientist Alex Carey, argues persuasively that “the 20th century has been characterized by three developments of great political importance: the growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy.

Fortune Magazine has carved out a niche – coffee table rag. The secretaries of CEO’s place these issues on coffee tables outside corporate boardrooms allowing waiting visitors to quickly check who top leaders are in the world. Very few people know anything about Mitch Daniels, or his thoughts about the education profession shared with Tony Bennett, or his Treasurer (Richard Mourdock) who confiscated millions of dollars from taxpayers from reaching public schools.

These casual readers will never know how Mitch Daniels screwed over millions of struggling Hoosiers after the 2008 Depression. When the private sector fails our society, the role of government is to step in and support citizens. Instead, we allowed “conservative leaders” like Mitch Daniels to cut back social programs which helped the most fragile Hoosiers – seniors and kids. What’s even worse, we allowed them to blame our economic problems on minorities and President Barack Obama. We allowed our embedded cultural racism and bigotry to be used to blame all our problems on unions, blacks, or any other social class we felt was inferior to us.

There are almost no records of Mitch Daniels’ efforts to invite the worst corporate owned farm operators (CAFOs) in the world to set up shop in Indiana by lowering, and in some cases, eliminating regulations on factory farms. Despite all the hard work by thousands of volunteers, the public knows almost nothing about this because “leaders” like Mitch Daniels and the press support these profiteers.

By the time Hoosiers figure out what’s happening, we’ll be knee dip in hog manure. Meanwhile, the China-owned hogs will be processed and served to the growing middle class in the Guangdong Province.

Indiana judges are still sorting out the mess Mitch created by privatizing the welfare offices across the state with IBM. IBM is seeking $110 million in damages.

Don’t forget who setup the BMV which was caught overcharging Hoosiers millions of dollars in fees. Also, when you look around the state and see our crumbling infrastructure, you can thank Mitch Daniels for capping property taxes on farms, business and real estate developers. We turned over the finances of our schools to the state under Mitch Daniels and local school districts have struggled ever since.

We get a sense of how Mitch Daniels thinks when he hammered on the famous historian/activist Howard Zinn, after learning of his death. Remember the emails that turned up between Mitch and Tony Bennett? Mitch called Zinn’s historical works, “excrement”. Meaning, Mitch prefers the white-washed version of our history where hand-picked leaders are portrayed as great conquerors versus oppressors. Where scoundrels such as him are painted out to be heroes on the pages of Fortune Magazine. Where Native Americans weren’t wiped off the U.S. map by genocidal white-supremacists – they were transformed from hostile heathens into good Christian land owners.

In other words, Mitch is a product of the corporate propaganda spewed on Americans for generations. He’s also esteemed by those of our Ruling Class for carrying out their dirty work while our media brands them all the great American success story to anyone who will listen.

The ‘American Success’ Myth is Crumbling

For the record, the chaos we are experiencing today is the ongoing global revolution. We are stripping through the layers of force-fed propaganda and lies being fed through corporate owned media outlets and those willing to sell out to make a dollar in the system while it lasts. The myths about capitalism, growth and consumerism are crumbling before our eyes. While giant corporations seek out new cheap labor and resources, the wake of their devastation is everywhere. Mitch Daniels was in the driver’s seat when this happened. He endorsed and advocated for supply side economics which extracted enormous wealth from the working class and deposited it in off-shore banks of the wealthiest members of the Ruling Class.

Renegade journalists are leaving their computers at the propaganda machines and holding both the media, private sector and government accountable. They are also giving a voice to those government leaders who are serving the will of the people and holding the private sector accountable.

The advent of the computer, internet and social media has allowed us to communicate world-wide in an instant. Corporate propaganda machines have been weakened. We can hear or read directly from Iranians about what it’s like in their country and compare it to the propaganda we hear on TV and read in the newspaper.

We have student loans totaling over one trillion dollars. These students were told they must get a college education to get a better paying job. They now have a degree, no job prospects, and thousands of dollars in loans to pay back. Has the government rushed to bail them out to revive the stalled economy like they did in 2009 with the capitalists?

Here are a few more words of Noam Chomsky:

You don’t have any other society where the educated classes are so effectively indoctrinated and controlled by a subtle propaganda system – a private system including media, intellectual opinion forming magazines and the participation of the most highly educated sections of the population. Such people ought to be referred to as “Commissars” – for that is what their essential function is – to set up and maintain a system of doctrines and beliefs which will undermine independent thought and prevent a proper understanding and analysis of national and global institutions, issues, and policies.

Now you know why we harp on the Libertarians who clamor about Democrats for spending money on “we the people”, or why we must, “Make deep cuts in Social Security and Medicaid/Medicare”.

Think about it for a moment – Mitch Daniels, der Commissar.

What kind of government eliminates regulation on financial institutions, so they can make risky loans, and then when it backfires on the them and hurts the world’s economy, turn around and spend trillions of dollars bailing them out while blaming immigrants, minorities and senior citizens for the problems?

You’ll have to admit, they have one heck of a propaganda machine. How were they able to pull that off without millions of Americans showing up in Washington, and at the New York Federal Reserve, demanding heads be placed on the guillotine? Or, why didn’t we all end up owning preferred stock in the companies we bailed out? Why use taxpayer subsidized debt to make investors whole?

Here’s the perfect white-washed spin about Mitch from Fortune:

The former White House budget director and Indiana governor is demonstrating that his green eyeshade approach works just as well in academia. As president of Purdue University, he’s frozen tuition, cut costs by zeroing out administrative waste, and negotiated a deal with Amazon to save students up to 30% on textbooks. No wonder Republican Pooh-Bahs are eager to lure him back to public life. For now, though, he has forsworn a return to politics.

This gets you ranked as one of the top 50 greatest leaders in the world? Cutting costs or eliminating government programs has the Republican Party leadership salivating for his return to politics?

Can anybody say the educational system in Indiana is better off today, than it was a decade ago because of Mitch Daniels? The damage is still being carried and when it’s done, it will take years to fix it.

We already know his policies for the food system aren’t working for us because of last months Gallup’s Wellness Ranking. We are sure corporate farmers are pleased with their profits, and we can still get antibiotic laden chicken, original or crispy, for nearly the same price as we did in 1995, but have our profiteers factored in the costs of our poor health and poisoned environment to the cheap price of drive-thru chicken? Who pays for all those extra expenses we wouldn’t have if corporations had to play by the same rules as organic farmers?

As Noam Chomsky states quite clearly, it is “corporate propaganda” spewed by “corporate owned media” to the public masses. For this reason, the Top 50 Leaders Edition of Fortune Magazine deserves the number one (#1) ranking among all other coffee-table rags.

What’s funny is you can use the same spin which Fortune Magazine uses to rank Mitch Daniels highly, to also rank someone like Adolf Hitler as a top 50 leader in the world. What’s not so funny is Adolf used a state-run propaganda machine (media operated by the Ministry of Propaganda & Public Enlightenment) to influence millions of honest Germans to follow him as he marched into the gates of hell with his nationalistic vision for the world.

We’ll leave you with one of Hitler’s famous quotes, “By the skillful use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell, or an extremely wretched life as paradise.”

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Todd Smekens

Journalist, consultant, publisher, and servant-leader with a passion for truth-seeking. Enjoy motorcycling, meditation, and spending quality time with my daughter and rescue hound. Spiritually-centered first and foremost. Lived in multiple states within the USA and frequent traveler to the mountains.

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