Why do individuals and governments engage in propaganda Because it works.  Some people believe lies even if evidence is strongly against them.  Consider Republicans and the January 6 riot at the Capitol.  Half of Republicans believe the lie that it was a peaceful protest or the work of left-wing liberals.  And, they will go on believing the falsehoods because it plays into their mind sets.  They are sheep following false shepherds and traveling a path to destruction of democracy.  There have other instances of propaganda which have survived through generations — notably, the post-Civil-War canard that the clash was about states’ rights and not slavery.  The problem with propaganda is lies can shape history by turning the public against the facts and truth.  Authoritarians depend on that, and they succeed often enough.  Propaganda will always be a part of communications.  It is up to communicators to respect facts and to avoid it.

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