Thursday, February 09, 2017

They didn't ask me, but. . .

. . . this seems right:
The Trump administration is more trusted than the news media among voters, according to a new Emerson College poll.

The administration is considered truthful by 49 percent of registered voters and untruthful by 48 percent.

But the news media is less trusted than the administration, with 53 percent calling it untruthful and just 39 percent finding it honest.
I finished college just before the Derrida/Foucault wave really hit my campus, so I can't claim any specific expertise involving post-structuralism, but it seems we're here. Here is a quick and dirty definition of post-structuralism:

 In the Post-Structuralist approach to textual analysis, the reader replaces the author as the primary subject of inquiry and, without a central fixation on the author, Post-Structuralists examine other sources for meaning (e.g., readers, cultural norms, other literature, etc), which are are therefore never authoritative, and promise no consistency. A reader's culture and society, then, share at least an equal part in the interpretation of a piece to the cultural and social circumstances of the author. 
Some of the key assumptions underlying Post-Structuralism include:
  • The concept of "self" as a singular and coherent entity is a fictional construct, and an individual rather comprises conflicting tensions and knowledge claims (e.g. gender, class, profession, etc). The interpretation of meaning of a text is therefore dependent on a reader's own personal concept of self.
  • An author's intended meaning (although the author's own identity as a stable "self" with a single, discernible "intent" is also a fictional construct) is secondary to the meaning that the reader perceives, and a literary text (or, indeed, any situation where a subject perceives a sign) has no single purpose, meaning or existence.
  • It is necessary to utilize a variety of perspectives to create a multi-faceted interpretation of a text, even if these interpretations conflict with one another.
This is a great approach to take, so long as you are able to control how things are interpreted, and the Left has exercised this control in the main for the last 50 years. It's also a great approach if you're into gaslighting. The key to making post-structuralism work for you is to ensure the "variety of perspectives" brought to bear in the interpretation support your agenda. It's also a great way to drain meaning from anything you find uncongenial to your agenda.

I don't know if Trump ever studied such things, but he understands the value of the strategies one can take from draining meaning from an author. As soon as the idea of "fake news" began to take root, his team grabbed it and placed the label on his opponents. Trump is violating ethics rules left and right? Fake news. Trump is Hitler? Fake news. And if it is true that Trump has marginally more credibility than his critics, his interpretation will prevail. And the continual rage on the Left merely reinforces the idea that a more leftist interpretation of events is something that can be ignored. As long as Trump doesn't blink, he'll continue to win the larger arguments. I've seen thousands of examples of people on social media bashing Betsy DeVos and Jeff Sessions. They are both in office today.

7 comments:

Bike Bubba said...

This explains a lot about all the times I'll make a comment on social media with a big of irrefutable fact that blatantly contradicts a person's narrative, and the end result is as if nothing happened. Either that, or my facts and argument weren't quite so irrefutable. :^)

Seriously, getting into a post-truth era is pretty scary for a lot of reasons.

Mr. D said...

Bubba, I’m coming to the conclusion that most of what I see on the internet is the work of someone trying to gaslight me. And maybe I’m trying to gaslight you. Place your bets.

Bike Bubba said...

Actually, I was already sure of that, but I drop by here anyways. I'll return the favor. :^)

I'm reminded of the time my brother refused to consider how his worldview would change if he knew most rich people don't inherit much. He refused to even consider the possibility--and scarier yet, he's got degrees from Hahvid and Beserkeley. Somebody that should, really, be able to consider "how many angels can dance on the head of a pin" without his head exploding or something.

Mr. D said...

Actually, I was already sure of that, but I drop by here anyways. I'll return the favor. :^)

I'd assume nothing less, good sir!

Unknown said...

Our strategic gaslight reverse will be severely depleted by the end of the next four years...

- Ringer

R.A. Crankbait said...

I have been stocking up on the cans of beans for the gaslight wars.

Here, try and pull my finger off of my keyboard.

Bike Bubba said...

RA; does that mean you're going to be "Count Flatula"?

Scary thing is that our "gaslighting", complete with Count Flatula, will be less noxious than that we see in the press and elsewhere....