In the ever-evolving world of information, successful propaganda campaigns have left a lasting impact on society, shaping our beliefs and actions. Whether it’s the perception of a nation, dietary habits, or economic policies, these beliefs are deeply ingrained in our culture.
While some may persist due to deliberate manipulation, others continue because they serve as convenient shortcuts in our complex world.
A social media user on a popular forum wanted to know which propaganda effort was so successful that people still believe in it today. Some answers posted by other users were thought-provoking. Keep reading to get a look at some of them.
1. Humans Use Only 10% Of Their Brains.
The belief that humans use only a fraction of their brain’s capacity has been perpetuated through books, movies, and popular culture. This myth is often invoked to suggest untapped potential, but it’s simply inaccurate.
One commenter jokingly said, “…sometimes I’ve got the impression that only 10% of humans use their brains.”
“If our brains naturally fired at near 100%, we would not be able to digest and absorb food fast enough to supply the brain. We would also need vastly more efficient lung and blood circulation. We would also have a severe problem maintaining neurotransmitters,” revealed another commenter.
2. Eating Carrots Makes Your Vision at Night Better
The myth that eating carrots improves night vision is another classic example of successful propaganda.
One commenter revealed that this idea was promoted during World War II. “… the British developed the first practical radar system and used it successfully to detect Luftwaffe bombers. To hide the technology from the Germans, the British government started a propaganda campaign pedaling the idea that eating carrots helped their RAF fighter pilots see better when the still-secret radar was responsible for the improved interception capability.”
3. Breakfast Is the Most Important Meal of the Day
Time and again, we have been told that breakfast is the most important meal. This belief is deeply rooted in society and has driven the sales of countless breakfast cereals and morning beverages.
One commenter had this to say, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day” is an ingenious marketing slogan. The catchphrase is widely credited to Dr. John Harvey Kellogg and fellow 7th Day Adventist James Caleb Jackson in their efforts to promote breakfast cereal.” “Kellogg created his breakfast cereal in a religiously motivated effort to save us from our carnal impulses,” said another commenter.
4. Bulls Hate the Color Red
The notion that bulls hate the color red is a common misconception perpetuated by the sport of bullfighting.
“Bulls are colorblind; they react to movement, not color,” revealed one commenter.
This misconception persists due to the romanticized image of the bullfight, which has been promoted through art, literature, and popular culture. It is a prime example of how symbolism and perception can overshadow the truth.
5. The Customer Is Always Right
The phrase “the customer is always right” has been widely embraced in business and customer service. This idea is rooted in the belief that businesses should prioritize customer satisfaction above all else. However, the reality is more nuanced.
“What a dumb slogan, but people keep repeating it.” wrote one commenter.
Another commenter had an idea of the actual quote. Here’s what they wrote: “The actual quote is, ‘The customer is always right in matters of taste. Nothing about price, service, or refunds, just taste…”
5. The Trickle-Down Effect
A commenter let us in on the trickle-down effect, an economic policy that suggests that benefits provided to the wealthy will ultimately benefit everyone in society.
“Pundits, politicians, and their brainwashed followers continue to advocate for tax cuts on corporations and the ultra-rich because they will give more back.”
Another commenter replied, “… it’ll make business expenses rise, and then they’ll terminate operations or offshore them. How do you not read this as corporate greed?”
The economic concept has faced considerable criticism and debate over the years, as the promised benefits to the broader population often fail to materialize.
6. The American Dream
One commenter said, “The American Dream was a marketing ploy created by people in the real estate space to sell… you guessed it – real estate.”
For decades, the “American Dream” concept has been a cornerstone of American identity. It is the belief that anyone can achieve success and prosperity with hard work and determination. “…it includes aspirations such as homeownership, a good education, and economic success. This myth has been so influential that people worldwide often see the United States as the land of opportunity, all of which is a fallacy,” read another comment.
Although this one is clearly a matter of opinion, some people aren’t buying it as a reality.
7. Capitalism Is Good for All
Capitalism has been praised as an economic system that benefits all, but it also faces criticism for fostering inequality and environmental degradation. While capitalism can drive innovation and economic growth, it often prioritizes profit over people and the planet.
“In reality, one can only be as successful in capitalism based on who they know, what situation they were born into, and luck,” said one online forum user.
Capitalist systems are prone to economic cycles, leading to financial crises and market instability. These cycles can result in job loss and financial hardship for many.
8. An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away
The saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” has been ingrained as a symbol of healthy eating. While apples are nutritious and healthy, maintaining good health involves various factors, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, and other lifestyle choices.
One commenter said, “During the prohibition, too many apples were left over after the drop in cider production. They needed a way to sell them, so they told people they were mega healthy to increase sales.”
Relying solely on eating an apple daily is not a comprehensive health strategy.
9. Vaccines Cause Autism
The notion that vaccinations can lead to autism is a myth that has stubbornly persisted for years. This belief can be traced back to a now-discredited study published in 1998. The study, authored by Andrew Wakefield, suggested a link between the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine and autism.
However, this study was later debunked, disputed by the scientific community, and retracted by the medical journal that published it. Numerous extensive studies have been conducted since then, and none have found substantial evidence supporting the vaccine-autism connection.
“What drives me the most crazy about this is the original study that founded the anti-vax movement, the debunked and retracted study in the Lancet …,” said one of the commenters.
10. Recycling as a Climate Change Mitigation Strategy
Recycling has been widely promoted as a sustainable practice that benefits the environment. However, some still argue that recycling is not as effective as advertised. The truth lies in a more nuanced understanding of the process. One commenter said, “The biggest scam in history…..recycling.”
“Most of what we recycle isn’t even recycled. Consumers only make up about 3% of the world’s industrial waste,” said another commenter.
Recycling is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Its effectiveness varies depending on factors such as recycled materials, local infrastructure, and consumer habits.
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