30 November 2014 – last modified 2021
The leading figure of the public relations industry, Edward Bernays, explained that “the very essence of the democratic process” is “the freedom to persuade and suggest,” what he calls “the engineering of consent.”
Propaganda by Edward L. Bernays (1928)
p 47 “If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind, is it not possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will without their knowing it?”
p 49 “But men do not need to be actually gathered together in a public meeting or in a street riot, to be subject to the influences of mass psychology. Because man is by nature gregarious he feels himself to be member of a herd, even when he is alone in his room with the curtains drawn. His mind retains the patterns which have been stamped on it by the group influences.”
p 53/4 “The newer salesmanship, understanding the group structure of society and the principles of mass psychology, would first ask: ‘Who is it that influences the eating habits of the public?’ The answer, obviously, is: ‘The physicians.’ The new salesman will then suggest to physicians to say publicly that it is wholesome to eat bacon. He knows as a mathematical certainty, that large numbers of persons will follow the advice of their doctors, because he understands the psychological relation of dependence of men upon their physicians.”
The next page has more quotes from Propaganda.
The Fluoride Deception by Christopher Bryson (2004)
p xxii “He [Edward L. Bernays] also promoted water fluoridation, consulting on strategy for the National Institute of Dental Research.”
p 159 “Selling fluoride was child’s play, Bernays explained [in a 1993 interview]. The PR wizard specialized in promoting new ideas and products to the public by stressing a claimed public-health benefit. He understood that citizens had an often unconscious trust in medical authority. ‘You can get practically any idea accepted,’ Bernays told me, chuckling. ‘If doctors are in favor, the public is willing to accept it, because a doctor is an authority to most people, regardless of how much he knows, or doesn’t know.…By the law of averages, you can usually find an individual in any field who will be willing to accept new ideas, and the new ideas then infiltrate the others who haven’t accepted it.”
p 159 “By publicizing the purported health benefits of certain products, Bernays similarly increased sales of bananas for the United Fruit Company, bacon for the Beechnut Packing Company, and Crisco cooking oil for Procter and Gamble.
p 160 “Before World War II, the diminutive media wizard [Bernays] had been a PR adviser to Alcoa. He operated from the same office building, One Wall Street, where the Alcoa lawyer Oscar Ewing had also worked. In 1950 Ewing had been the top government official to sign off on the endorsement of water fluoridation, as Federal Security Administrator in charge of the US Public Health Service.
‘Do you recall working with Oscar Ewing on fluoridation?’ I asked Bernays. ‘Yes,’ he replied.”
Needless to say, the forced fluoridation sales technique has not changed much over the years.