Options Presented in Propaganda
The idea of propaganda is to get you to do something you are not now doing. You are urged to support, vote, buy, etc. The propaganda piece can suggest what might happen if you don't do what is suggested.
You may see some of these fallacies in the presentation of options.
- Either/Or Fallacy: This is the False Dichotomy fallacy. It consists of framing the issue to make it appear that there are only two options. One option is made to look terrible, with the implication that the other option presented is the only choice.
- Extrapolation: This is simply making spectacular predictions on the basis of very few currently available facts. Such predictions tend to be extremely unreliable. Physicist Niels Bohr is credited with "Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future."
- Fear: A fear-based message warns of some horrible outcome if you don't do what the propagandist suggests. The idea is to divert your attention from the real issue; the goal then becomes reducing the fear. If this works, you have been deceived. Fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) can be very powerful. Beware of any message featuring FUD.
Study the actions suggested by the propaganda. Look for fallacious reasoning. Look for additional options not presented. Look for rival causes.