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FILM, MYTHOLOGY AND POLITICS

From the plays performed in the amphitheatre below the Parthenon to the stories of the native Americans, our world is dominated by the power of myth.

Film represents the culmination of the revolution in western art produced by Richard Wagner. In his Festspielhaus in Bayreuth Wagner created a revolutionary design. The orchestra was hidden so that the audience would focus its attention on the story alone. The music became a subconscious power that was a part of a mythological vision.

The evolution of film has gone beyond Wagner's wildest dreams. Today, with the link between video and stereo in the last ten years the ordinary citizen can create a truly awesome "Festspielhaus" in his own living room (or any room).  The power to persuade has reached a new peak of perfection.

The greatest power of film is in many ways the subconscious message. A film defines various structures of reality, various concepts of good and evil, in its own world. The viewer is often captivated by it all - without realizing that he is receiving a message.

A person who might not watch a political speech will be captivated by a fascinating story with all the power of modern special effects. The roar of guns from his giant stereo speakers might make him think that his own house might be the center of a world war and so on.

Films, like ancient myths, can contain powerful subconscious messages. Through the power of film, minds can be changed, directed and controlled.

THE POWER TO CONTROL MINDS

In the new millennium, the power to persuade, to dazzle and to manipulate will reach a level never seen before in history.

As the world becomes totally connected by video, it will be possible for all the people of the world to receive powerful political messages. No need to be literate. No need to know how to operate a computer. Film is the universal communicator, the atomic bomb of global communications.

In countries like China and India TV is growing at a rate that staggers the imagination.  In the villages of Indonesia people who cannot read and who do not have running water or sewers, are sitting in a state of fascination before flickering color electronic windows, watching American TV shows in their native languages.

THE POLITICAL IMPLICATIONS OF A VIDEO WORLD

Some see a new, peaceful, decentralized world coming. This is naive. What we could be moving towards is an age of political control beyond the wildest dreams of Orwell.  What Orwell failed to understand is that people often want totalitarianism. Stalin's show trials were among his most popular projects. Hundreds of thousands of people marched through Red Square shouting "death to the wreckers" as the trials began.

The ability of modern broadcast video to deliver a powerful political message will overwhelm the potentially fragmentary effects of satellite TV and home video. Furthermore, modern technology also is a great blessing to police powers, which will enable satellite signals to be jammed and video tapes to be suppressed. These technologies can be manipulated to serve the state.

The end result is that the power to persuade, the power of political propaganda, is rising to a level never seen before in world history.

Up until just the last 100 years only a limited number of people could hear a leader. Hitler and Roosevelt used radio in a manner that was unprecedented.  Modern mass rallies could only be held in our time due to the invention of the loud speaker.  Today, mass rallies are accompanied by high quality stereo sound and giant video screens.  TV is a weapon beyond the wildest dreams of Hitler and Roosevelt.

Charismatic leaders have immense hypnotic power in person.  The global electronic video network will enable charismatic leaders to become more powerful than ever before.  These people will be able to communicate, excite and captivate on a scale never seen before.