There is a kind of propaganda that everybody knows is propaganda, but which involves statements which everybody expects a personage to make. Call it Expected Lies.
So that when a fellow who used to be President was asked if his latest already-well-known dalliance was true, he wagged his finger and said no. As he was expected to. Nobody (above a certain intelligence) believed it, but because the lie was expected, those on his political side were expected to support it, which they did (at first) in a desultory fashion. The Expected Lie is after all one of the reasons why we have taboos on self-incrimination.
This is a silly but illustrative example. Why did this fellow tell the lie? Because, simply, if he told the truth he would have had to act on that truth. So that if he said, “Yes, I did it and often, and once with a cigar” there was little recourse left to him but to resign. A drastic action, one filled with portents and consequence. The Expected Lie brings freedom from acting.
Nothing more than this explains the endless stream of nothing-to-see-heres we get from European leaders after the latest killing by Muslims in the name of Islam. We are told the Expected Lie in many forms: “This is not true Islam (even though the Muslim attackers swear that it is)”, “All Muslims are not terrorists (a truth but non sequitur)”, “We don’t know the reason for the murders (despite the sworn testimony of cowardly killers)”, “The slaughter was sparked by racism (false, and even if true no excuse for wanton murder)”, “The rapes of children and their cover-up were not unusual (a hell-condemning perposterosity)”, “Immigration is good and will continue (even though all of history shows forced mixing of cultures leads to violence)”, and so on.
Nobody believes any of these Expected Lies, nor are we meant to. Yet there is something in all of us that screams, “Why can’t these bloody liars tell the truth!” They cannot because, as with the serially offending President, admitting the truth must needs lead to action. And the action called for cannot be countenanced by these leaders.
At the least would be the public recognition that Equality and Diversity are false gods. Religions as deeply held as these are not given up over a few deaths. Better would be the ejection of Muslims from once-Christian countries, but that would not only cause leaders to admit the superiority of Christianity over Islam, but again it would force them to say Equality and Diversity are wrong. (I’ll soon have more to say on the freedom of religion.) At the most would be war: Crusade against Jihad.
None of these actions are palatable; none will be taken. The Expected Lies therefore must continue.
God bless Pope Francis. He was on yet another plane and as is his wont he spoke without even notes on his cuff. He admitted the world was at war, but he clarified what he meant by war:
“When I speak of war, I talk about it seriously, but it’s not a war of religion. It’s a war for money, for resources, for nature, for dominion. This is the war,” Pope Francis told journalists on his July 27 flight from Rome to Krakow.
“Could one think of a religious war? No. All religions want peace. Others want war,” he said. “Is that clear?”
No, your holiness, it is not clear. Blessed be the peacemaker, but Our Lord also said, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” While Christianity desires peace, war, like the poor, is something we recognize we will always have with us.
The Pope’s propaganda isn’t believed, and isn’t expected to be believed. Did not the holy Quran say (sura 2 at 191) “And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out” and (sura 9 at 5) “So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush…”, and more beside? Did those religions which offered human sacrifice desire peace?
What’s puzzling here are the actions expected were the Pope to tell the truth instead of the Expected Lie. One would be the admission that Christianity is superior to Islam. Is the Pope reluctant to make this claim? The Pope may calculate that his opinion is so weighty that the secular leaders of Europe (and elsewhere) would have to openly agree with him, thus leading to the consequences noted above. But does Pope Francis really believe he is so important in the post-Christian West?
I leave this question with you, dear reader.