The Nazis used propaganda effectively. They also used the media to keep their citizens complacent. They would produce films and fill the theaters with people. This kept their population under control. When they were discussing the movies they weren't discussing politics. When they were in the theaters they weren't on the streets or at home discussing the policies of the Nazis. It was a very effective way to control their citizens without guns on every corner.
We have sports. Football games, baseball, basketball, NASCAR.
We are a nation that has announced that one in six Americans are starving in America and yet 100,000 football fans spent $1,600 a ticket (and more for scalped tickets) to go to the Super Bowl. The hype before and after the game keeps people focused on the game and not on politics.
We have movies, thousands of movies to watch in theaters, at home, on the net, on planes, etc.
We have computer games that adults and kids play, again thousands of games being played for hours. The games include the capability of connecting hundreds of players at a time.
Imagine a complacent citizenry being fed inane dribble in movies, tv shows, and computer gaming - 24/7. Imagine a complacent citizenry being lulled into thinking sports games have any significance beyond a game that you watch once. Rivalries, playoffs, rabid fans, thousands spent in memorabilia, office pools - quite an impressive way to keep citizens from discussing politics.
I suppose some fool out there would think I was comparing our current government to the Nazis. How absurd. That is a jump and a stretch beyond reasoning. Don't ascribe to my column your crazy thoughts.
I am simply stating that Americans have a lot of free time on their hands. Time that they fill with inane pursuits. The government surely wouldn't manipulate the inane pursuits and the availability of those pursuits 24/7 - that would be sinister. Our government wants us to be happy and to pursue any interest we have, well any interest other than political ones. We can trust our government to have our best interests in mind, so not to worry the government is in the politicians capable hands. We can enjoy reruns of Mr. Ed or Honey BooBoo. We don't need to bother our pretty little heads with anything more intellectual, really we don't.