It’s time that we understand the repercussions of what happens when manipulators just market emotions to us. How many times have we heard, “It’s just a [insert controversial subject here]” as a means of downplaying the impact of an action? Manipulation of the emotions is a marketing tactic, and in the end the manipulators are often successful at making us have REAL emotions related to things that aren’t real or never happened. On this episode of The Axiom Amnesia Theory, Heit & Cheri address media manipulation head on.

Topics discussed include the uproar over “Django Unchained” slave dolls, “Django Unchained’s” manipulation of Black folks’ emotions, manipulation of emotion in film and books, the ridiculous documentary “Thrive”, Violinist Joshua Bell ignored playing in the subway, whether you can identify which group has ill motives just by looking at them, cultural significance of Pootie Tang and Idiocracy, propensity for monopolies to always form, less entropy is the way of the universe, alliances of the rich that prevent the poor from surviving, how extraordinary people give their descendants a boost for many generations, addressing people who say “Django is just a movie,” brand marketing via latching on to existing brands, and more!

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Segment 1

  • Discussion about the continued conflict over the movie Django Unchained, the makers of which are now marketing slave dolls.

  • “You can exploit us all you want, but selling slave dolls… Now you’ve gone too far!” It’s interesting to watch the shift as people turn on Tarantino and Django. The fact that the slave dolls seem to be the catalyst for the shift is an indicator that people still don’t get it…

  • Al Sharpton and others have called for a boycott of the dolls, not because of the foolishness of the movie and slave dolls, but because they are marketed to children.

  • Most people loved the idea of the movie and the movie itself, with only a few objectors. Now that some prominent people are standing up, now the bandwagonism has begun.

  • Discussion about Tavis having read the screenplay, yet people saying that because he didn’t see the film, his criticism is invalid.

  • If you missed the original comments on the movie, check out Episode 112: Don’t Yank My Django Unchained and Episode 114: Django Won’t Unchain Your Brain

  • Discussion about the manipulation of Black folks’ emotions with this film. Manipulation of the emotions is one of the greatest assets of any good storyteller. This is true of books and film alike.

    When you understand this, then you can understand how the sensation of “feeling good” about a fictional occurrence in a book or movie is merely a manipulation of your emotions based on something that is not real. A REAL emotion related to something that never actually happened…

    Now, what happens when you want to feel better about something bad that really happened? What happens when a storyteller presents you with a story that seems to retell a piece of history, but with a “better” ending?

  • This is all just clever marketing on the part of Tarantino.

  • Discussion about how emotions are manipulated via marketing and storytelling to make you feel a certain way about products. Examples given are things like ads that say shoes can help you jump higher, etc.

  • Discussion about Axiom Amnesia’s photo, which asks “Can you identify which group has ill motives?”

  • Discussion about the labeling and categorization of people is dangerous.

  • Discussion about Joshua Bell, a violinist, who is a famous musician. He played for 45 minutes in a subway for free and hardly nobody noticed he was even there. They weren’t told that he was famous, and that he was great–so they mostly ignored him.

  • Discussion about the cultural significance of the movie Pootie Tang, despite its slapstick comedic approach.

  • Discussion about the similar significance of the move Idiocracy.

  • Why do people have to be told something to recognize that it is great or that is sucks? People really need to experience things and form opinions for themselves.

  • Discussion of the marketing manipulation in the documentary Thrive:

  • The guy who made Thrive basically combined every other anti-establishment documentary, then made sure to use every commonly used buzz word. In the end it is all about gathering a following for him and whatever future foolishness he has in store.

  • Having followers gives people power and control. When you have an army of people, it is easy to disseminate your messages and make money or use those people in whatever way you wish.

  • We have gotten away from being able to assess what’s real, what we think.

  • Discussion about how monopolies will always form, given the same ingredients in the mix.

  • Discussion about the notion of diffusion across a semipermeable membrane and the particles moving toward balance. It seems like less entropy is the way of the universe.

  • Discussion about how people formed alliances on the TV show Survivor, which made it impossible for others to have a fair chance at survival.

  • In any situation people will have different amounts of resources, so in the end, the rich will continue to gain, while the poor lose.

  • Discussion about how extraordinary people give their descendants a boost for many generations. Their offspring are not necessarily extraordinary, but they continue to float off of the advantages given by their ancestors. George W. Bush and the Jackson family are given as examples of this.

  • Discussion about Sasha and Malia Obama having the star power to make money right now, simply because they are the daughters of President Obama.

  • Discussion about how Will and Jada Smith’s kids were put into the best position to develop the raw talent that they have. This is an advantage over the average child.

  • Discussion about how people say Django Unchained is “just a movie,” yet the news programs’ commentary brings it into the realm of being more than just a movie. Django is a brand that has an economic impact.

  • Discussion about how the best brand marketing latches on to an already existing brand to give it a boost.

  • Django Unchained is not “just a movie.” It is brilliant brand marketing, and we need to understand how this all plays into the system of capitalism and the messages sent by the film and commentary.


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