I was hanging out at my granny’s growing more bored by the minute. She was napping as she tends to do with her downtime after a night of work at the local rest home. So I was left to my own devices, no granny chat, a shoddy internet connection and having finished my book. The truth is there isn’t much excitement happening in Bennettsville as one would surely expect from a small town in South Carolina. I had noticed long ago that the population of the state seems to be made up of lots of elderly, but I have learned recently that this is actually “a thing” this surely only negatively impacts the number of thrills to be had. At any rate, I picked up the local newspaper which my grandmother always keeps lying around figuring I would give it a whirl. Aptly named the Marlboro Herald the little rag has been around my entire existence at least and I imagine long before I was a twinkle in an eye. Although everyone has been crying about how print media is dead this little paper seems to be hanging in there unfazed. I believe this is due to two things… the comfort of tradition and the tendency of the older population to need just that. Anyway I opened the herald expecting and getting the normal 2 pages worth of obituaries and some riveting stories about the shenanigans of people in my age group. But I also found a few things that had me shrieking what the fuck?
I had no idea that I would come across so much imperialist, perception management propaganda. I guess on some level I was holding out hope that such a small publication would have escaped the clutches of the mighty machine. But alas I now remember that the little cogs do in fact coalesce into the whole contraption. How can this one publication escape being turned into a brain cleaning pamphlet when the people who write for it edit it and publish it are products of the same system it is. I perceived the disparaging overtone of the paper on a conscious level but what are the implications for someone less awake taking in the subliminal ideas presented by this garbage? I think personal disaster, this is the kind of trash that has kept africans as slaves, and its still being used today to reinforce the same mentality. Moving the plantation to the mind and disguising the forced labor as gainful employment. This is a community of hardworking people like my granny who have struggled there whole lives to keep food on there tables and roofs over there heads. Yet here you have a local newspaper disparaging the people into states of complacency and disempowerment. An exact scaling down of the mass media’s biased and narrow journalism practices. A microcosm of our larger world, life under the perception presented to us by the slave masters. Yes they are still around because they are timeless we refer to them as the elite or the top %10 these days.
First up “From the pastor’s pew” I actually didn’t read this one when I snapped the photo. I saw the title and knew there would be some issues, but read the photo later and my jaw dropped. It speaks volumes and I find it strange that there were any articles about religion in a newspaper. The article is seriously about how people should be more content being in positions of servitude. The author proceeds to point to too much aspiration for the sore state of people’s happiness and well being. The article mention’s Sam Walton the founder of Walmart the worlds second largest corporation as a shining example of hard work and perseverance “in a world contaminated with the philosophy of getting ahead at all cost”. So somehow this tycoon is servant enough for the oh so mythical Jesus but the people who run his stores and make his products for slave wages are overly ambitious and power grubbing. It’s unbelievable! The article dances around Walton admitting that his biggest worry is keeping his low level employees in line “If we can instill in them that they are out there to serve, we will continue to prosper”. Think about this, a corporation as prosperous as Walmart could just pay employees the most competitive wages and give the best benefits to ensure loyalty but the goal is to maximize profits by paying out as little as possible. Walton is really concerned about all his slaves realizing exactly what they are. What I find really strange about the whole mention of Walton is that the town just got its first Walmart maybe a year ago. Now the creator of an entity designed to extract wealth from the masses without regard for the environment or its people is the model for morality.
This actually made me nauseous. Here we have a black man being played for the fact that he looks like most of the residents. On the one hand the poor schmuck may not realize what is being done to him and that would be incredibly sad. But Williams definitely has douche bag ideas about the way things are going down. So the article mostly bashed communism as the ultimate in creating a lazy frivolous population while holding up capitalism as the model economic system. The basic crap we have been being beat over the head with since the dawn of this empire. Novice style regurgitation of the same tired ideas and examples really. The guy has the second article in the paper that blames working people for their condition and that’s pathetic. He gives capitalism credit for giving people ambition with its incentive of unfettered growth. He attacked the work ethic of those under communist rule and says human nature is to be lazy without incentive and points to this as why communism is doomed to failure. His opinion was irrelevant to me. I don’t know what communism is like because I have not live under it. I know capitalism has failed and has become or maybe is inherently an evil system that has created an empire for a few people at the top of a global society of billions. Even so this guy is entitled to his opinion. I’m more concerned about the self loathing he is bleeding all over the pages, implanting those same deadly ideas into the consciousness of the community. Implying to the people that things are the way they are because without master’s system of doing things were naturally lazy and unambitious. The icing on the cake is that the whole message is delivered in a recurring segment called “The right side” in high contrast white on black lettering for a subliminal boost. Right next to a photo of Armstrong William’s solid trustworthy looking african american face to seal the deal.
“The hillbilly ten commandments” are a little bit less disparaging I guess. More on the side of comically inappropriate, this is just embarrassingly stupid material for a newspaper. Sort of like horrible comic relief after the despicable article above, this was situated right at the bottom of the page after “The right side”
Lastly here is the section where they list all the arrests in the area from public intoxication to robbery. This is something that seems to be more common here in the south but I could be wrong. You see sections like this in news papers in many of the towns around here. In my opinion this is completely disparaging to those who find themselves in the clutches of the legal system. No one is perfect and shit happens, so those low moments in a person’s life when they end up in the slammer or summoned to court are personal and should stay that way. It seems evil too me to reveal this kind of information to ones friends and neighbors in such a small community where everyone knows each other. In reality few people are engaging in rape, murder or any other seriously detrimental crimes from a societal stand point so why soil a person’s reputation for committing stupid infractions with no victims. So do the crime, do the time, and deal with all your neighbors who know exactly how you slipped up in detail, thats not fair. If the owner of the local cleaners see’s a person’s name in the blotter how much less likely is he to give them work, regardless of what for. A glimpse of the prison industrial complex in action, if one can’t get work they’re naturally more likely to do something to get themselves arrested again.
When I see things like this I still find myself blown away not from surprise but because I wonder how it’s getting past people. Then I remember that I didn’t see all the indoctrination we are subjected to nonstop for so long. The thing is it takes being able to observe something to see what is happening but you can’t observe the whole of something that contains you. It sucks to sit with the reality that no one can save everyone. We can all save some though and I will never stop telling those I can reach the truth about the fear being forced into their subconscious mind. Once the mechanism is pointed out it loses its power. I think my granny thinks I never shut up, but I sense thats ok with her.