Mustafa Kaya: "Public opinion, common sense, perceptions and society"

Mustafa Kaya: "Public opinion, common sense, perceptions and society"
Date: 18.10.2020 17:00

Milli Gazete columnist Mustafa Kaya writes on public opinion. Here is the full article.

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Although the concept of public opinion may seem to be a pure, neutral or impartial concept, there are serious debates on whether it is not at all in terms of political science, social psychology or sociology. There are even those who claim that this concept is an irrational power over societies. So much so that it is thought to be a magical concept in order for the people to direct them to the desired side by the ruling groups. According to those who defend this, it is even possible that the concept of public opinion is completely rejected.
Today, the role of mass media in imposing a single point of view by preventing alternative views beyond the opposition circles in societies has become undeniable.
Even when it comes to public opinion, one can even talk about a public opinion that everyone has set their own limits. At this point, it should be emphasized that the "public opinion" expressed by those who dominate the communication tools is presented as if they are common components of the whole society.
Famous linguist Noam Chomsky and economist Edward Herman also questioned the role of mass media in their work The Manufacture of Consent: Political Economy of Mass Media (1992). As it is known, mass media is a system of delivering messages and symbols to the public. While doing this, they entertain individuals and also serve to inform. However, trying to make them accept certain values, beliefs and behaviors can only be possible with a systematic propaganda.
Today, it is obvious that political domination takes place on the basis of culture and ideas. Propaganda has now evolved not to engage civil society in a particular view and ideology, but to make it accepted as "common sense" going much further. Beyond voting for a political party, all actions of that party are expected to be accepted and defended as “correct” and “right”. In other words, acting with "common sense" means submitting and consenting to all statements of the government. It is thus easier for the masses in economic distress to believe that this situation is ideologically temporary and that the country will easily overcome them and achieve prosperity. The fact that the masses who are played with their perceptions are forced to passively obey instead of questioning what they are told is an indicator of what kind of propaganda they are subjected to. The manipulations that were once used to imitate or change reality are now a thing of the past. Because the reality itself, which is wanted to be changed, has become inimitable. The denial of the lie with another lie has now formed a spiral and the truth is faced with the danger of disappearing completely with the help of mass media. This transformation points to a detailed social engineering process. This process is organized according to scientific principles based on the findings of social scientists and applied by professional public relations experts. In other words, beyond the daily random developments, it is the systematic work of a group of professionals and the presentation of new "believable" points and symbols to the society as an engineering project. In this way, the country was turned into a small room and an environment where a single whisper was repeated hundreds of times was aimed.
Of course, our purpose from these statements is not to give a general public relations ceremony. Of course, our intention is to point to the obtaining of consent, especially of the masses that are governed, dominated or expected to act according to a certain ideology and in a way silenced. In our country, there is a government whose motivation is lost and whose main aim is to remain at work. In this corner of myself, I try to share with you, my dear readers, what a government that cannot promise a good, good, true or prosperous future to its citizens to stay in power. It is no longer unnoticed that deliberate calculations such as preventing objection to him and preventing the opponents from coming together are made by deliberately using methods of division, segregation and marginalization. The main reason why diametrically opposed practices always find social responses during the 18-year period of power is, in a way, the success of "social engineering" studies. At this point, it is also true that some beneficial steps taken by the government are the driving force in the first place for social support. However, if we look at what remains in the final analysis in terms of political, social, economic or cultural aspects, the question of whether the result is development, change or metamorphosis becomes important.
The only way out of all these crisis areas is the rebuilding of the minimum commons. Public opinion or common sense actually means the minimum commons in society. Existing ways and methods are not sustainable. Processes managed by impositions of perception cause much more negative consequences when the facts emerge. Any method that is fair, natural, non-transparent and does not comply with the usual flow of life cannot ultimately be successful.


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