Papa of Propaganda
Forget about (well, you know...) Hitler's guy Joseph Goebbels or Stalin's guy Molotov. They just gave propaganda a bad name. But Bernays basically invented it.
From his 1925 book ORGANIZING CHAOS, the first paragraph:
THE conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.
Bernay's first task was to drag the screaming isolationist U.S.A. into World War I.
... with stuff like this:
Then he parlayed his techniques into a big P.R. business. His first biggy account was a ciggy account - Chesterfield. This dude convinced women is was cool and sexy to smoke.
But Propaganda wasn't "bad" until the Nazis and the Commies used it to brainwash their populations to love monsters and monstrous behavior. Never mind millions of lung cancer deaths. Never mind the twisting of facts, the repetitive Big Lies, the assumption that we can be talked into anything.
Now, we've got Fox News, Andrew Breitbart, the Koch brothers and others propagandizing with the best (worst) of them. More examples to come.
Thanks, Edward Bernays. (Oh, and he was a "liberal elite" of his time.)